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Page Updated 27 Apr. 2004

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Stornophone 500

The Storno CQP500 was introduced in 1963 with built in speaker/mic followed with the remote CQP500R using a remote speaker/mic. The Storno 500 was available with up to 3 crystal controlled channels and single or double tone transmit signalling options. Transmitter output power was 0.5W, later increasing to 1W apart from the UHF 300mW models.

Design features

The CQP500 was an all transistorised design and was then the world's smallest true pocket sized portable transceiver. The set used a modular design consisting of interconnected chains of miniature module cans with separate screening covers over the receive sections, housed in a pressure-diecast light alloy cabinet. Interesting features included a battery condition indicator lamp on the bottom of the set which illuminated when pressing the tone transmit button which also made it a quite reasonable torch!
CQP500 Module

Technical Developments

The CQP500 receiver was a single conversion superhet with an unusual crystal controlled discriminator design. All the main RF modules consisted of miniature components mounted on printed circuit boards housed within a metal can. Each module was a separate stage in the transmitter or receiver, with inputs and outputs wire linked to the adjacent stages making for a very logical layout when fault finding.

CQP500 Tones

System capabilities

Tone signalling capabilities were limited to single or double tone transmit only with the possibility of tone 1 or tone 2 selection on some remote versions. Special versions were developed with sub-audible CTCSS transmit and receive tone signalling, in particular the Metropolitan Police custom version but the space taken by the tone module limited the set to single channel only working.


The CQP500 Remote versions had an extended speaker/mic unit allowing the main radio to be body worn.


The CQP560 was the UHF version of the CQP500 and differed from the VHF models in that the transmit power was lower at 300mW but also the local speaker/mic versions also had the socket for remote operation. When used with the internal speaker/mic the socket needed a blanking plug with internal links to be fitted on the socket. They were also limited to a maximum of 2 channels.



Models specifically designed and approved for working in flammable atmospheres were available in local and remote versions with special cases, batteries and locking tools and their transmit power limited to 400mW.


The later 1W transmitter power versions became available with the development of improved RF power transistors capable of higher power and gain at VHF radio frequencies.
Met Police Radio

CQP512R-1549 (Met Police)

The first portable radios widely used by the Metropolitan Police were made to a customised specification featuring CTCSS tone transmit and receive. The sets were single channel with a Met Police crest fitted in the position normally reserved for the channel switch. The famous 'talking brooch' style remote speaker/mic had a 3 position volume control and there was no off switch!
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