Tower Hobbies
Frequencies and Channel Numbers

Frequencies and Channel Numbers

Like all radio equipment, an R/C system broadcasts its signal at a specific wave rate and this is known as its "frequency". Just as commercial radio stations that you listen to each operate on their own frequency, so do R/C transmitters. There are several different frequencies to choose from and these are now referred to in the R/C industry by "Channel Number". This channel number is easily confused with the number of control channels used in the model but the two are quite different - the channel number that your transmitter broadcasts on (e.g., channel 56 or channel 80) refers to its frequency, not the number of model features it can control.

If the model you plan on operating flies in the air, choose an aircraft channel number (usually channels 11-60). Certain radio systems are also available on 50 MHz ham radio frequencies (channels 0-9). If selecting one of the ham frequency channels, please note that an FCC amateur license is required for usage (and such systems can only be operated at 1-watt maximum power output). If you are operating on the surface (car, boat, etc.) choose a surface channel (usually channels 61-90). Please note that countries other than the United States may treat frequencies differently.

The best channel number choice would be one that is not used very often in your area or club. Tower Hobbies allows you to specify a certain channel number for your radio or other frequency-controlled item. You may also specify no preference in which case we will send the most available channel number to you.

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