Devices such as walkie-talkies have been around for a long time. If the very first products were distinguished by a weak signal, a large amount of interference, then modern designs are compact and powerful products. With its help, you can provide remote communications exactly in those areas where it is needed most, and this happens quite often. If you do not take into account entertainment or amateur devices, then the possibilities of compact radios are very wide. Walkie-talkies are often used by employees of security organizations, intelligence officers, taxi drivers, hunters, fishermen, ship captains, builders, and so on.
On sale today you can find a truly huge range of such products, so choosing the most suitable device is not as easy as it might seem at first glance. We decided to dedicate the rating to the best walkie-talkies of 2020. Before we start looking at specific models and analyzing their performance, let’s take a look at what these devices are and what you should pay attention to when choosing them.
What factors are important when buying a walkie-talkie?
At the first stage, it is necessary to decide for what purposes this device will be used. We did not consider highly specialized equipment, having decided to refer only to the most common products. Conventionally, products can be divided into several varieties: travel radios — they must have small overall dimensions and a capacious battery that allows them to do without recharging for a long time. Walkie-talkies for lovers of hunting and fishing are necessarily equipped with a shock-resistant and waterproof case. Units designed for motorists in general and truckers in particular must be powerful and reliable, small overall dimensions are not important in this case. Products designed for use in the city are usually used by security guards and builders. The most important characteristics of these devices are autonomy and compact overall dimensions.
Such radio stations operate in certain ranges, in our country the most popular are CB (27 MHz), UHF (400-480 MHz), VHF (136-174 MHz). In principle, it is impossible to say which one is better or worse — a lot depends on the area of u200bu200buse here: for example, the SV will show itself best in open spaces, in forest conditions it will not work so well. Here, the device operating at the VHF frequency will be optimal.
Another important point influencing the choice of device is the power of the transmitter. It may seem that the more powerful, the better, but this affects the battery life. If it is possible to regularly recharge the battery, then it is quite acceptable to purchase powerful products. In addition, pay attention to the type of battery — it can be either specialized batteries or the most ordinary AA batteries. Battery powered walkie-talkies are best suited for hiking, and there are models that have a low power consumption mode that allows you to extend battery life. This parameter is absolutely not important for models designed for use in cars, since there the device is connected directly to the vehicle’s electrical network.
Portability options depend on the type of radio. For automotive products, it is important that it is convenient to install, and the tourist structure should fit comfortably in the palm of your hand and not exceed the most ordinary smartphone in terms of weight. Be sure to take into account the range of the radio. Communication range can vary significantly depending on the frequency at which the product operates. In addition, at the moment, external factors directly affect — humidity, cloudiness, ambient temperature, relief, and possible obstacles. The range of an automobile-type walkie-talkie depends on the power of the installed antenna, the strongest transmitters allow communication between machines located at a distance of several tens of kilometers from each other.
In accordance with the current legislation, some types of walkie-talkies are subject to mandatory registration. In particular, this applies to devices operating in the UHF and VHF bands. Many models have a number of additional features. In particular, with their help, you can select certain subscribers and conduct a dialogue directly with them, which is very convenient in case of congestion on the air. The Active Noise Cancellation system reduces the amount of interference on the channel and makes communication more comfortable. Many walkie-talkies are equipped with an external headset. Travel radios, as a rule, are placed in a shock-resistant and waterproof case, which will reliably protect the device from damage.
When compiling our ranking of the best walkie-talkies of the year, we took into account all these points, in addition, we took into account the ratio of price and quality of products, as well as user reviews. We have tried to include here only affordable products so that each of our readers can afford to purchase the model they like.
4. ROGER KP-55
This is an ideal device for people who prefer outdoor activities such as cycling, skiing and so on. The mass of the product is only 60 grams with overall dimensions of 47x74x14.5 mm. The radio is placed in a case made of rubberized plastic. The assembly is excellent, no extraneous squeaks, backlashes and other manufacturing defects were found. It reliably protects the internal elements from the ingress of dust and moisture — the assembly complies with the international standard IP57. This can tell the user that the walkie-talkie will work quietly even in the most dusty places, it can be immersed in water to a depth of 1 meter and kept there for an hour. In urban conditions, the communication range of the device is from 500 meters to 1 km, in open areas this figure is much higher.
The radio is equipped with a DSP processor, which allows you to make the device circuit simpler and achieve minimum overall dimensions. It should be noted that such a product is susceptible to various electromagnetic interferences. The speech on the walkie-talkie can be heard very well. The autonomy of the product is also very decent — about 15-17 hours in the 5/5/90 cycle, but if you use the maximum settings with the highest power, then the battery will last for about 6 hours of continuous operation. The model is charged from a power supply unit with a micro USB connector. The antenna here is soft, so it will be almost impossible to break it. Despite the fact that the device is more like a toy, it is quite high quality and allows you to create a completely acceptable communication channel. The product operates in the frequency range of 446 MHz at an ambient temperature of -20 to +55 degrees.
- The mode of the lowered consumption of energy of the accumulator is provided;
- If necessary, you can instantly copy the settings from one device to another;
- Noise reduction is adjusted manually;
- Minimum overall dimensions and weight;
- Reliability and durability;
- Waterproof case.
- No ping system provided;
- Reporting a low battery too late.
3. BELLSOUTH T-388
This kit is characterized by high quality workmanship and low cost. With the help of these walkie-talkies, it will be possible to always stay in touch on tourist and country trips, including where there is no mobile connection, and where it is, it will be possible to save a lot on these costs. Devices are small in size. The case is made of matte plastic of medium roughness, which will never slip in your hands. Its shape is ergonomic, the walkie-talkie fits comfortably in the hand, the finger recesses are arranged in such a way that the product is very comfortable to hold in both large and miniature hands. At the top of the structure is a rigid, rigid antenna, a high-brightness LED flashlight, and a headset jack. On the front side there is a speaker, which is covered with a perforated plastic plate. There are also function buttons and a backlit LCD display, which will display all the information the user needs.
Performance for a model of this price category is quite high. The maximum communication range reaches 5 km in open space. Each radio operates on the basis of 4 AA batteries. This ensures long autonomy of the device, if necessary, the batteries are changed within seconds, which saves a lot of time for charging the battery. The flashlight is bright enough, it will be very useful in the dark. The noise reduction system is very reliable, it works stably, the sound is crisp and clear.
- The design is equipped with a 2.5-inch LCD informative display;
- It is very easy to operate the product;
- High-quality noise reduction system;
- Convenient ergonomic body shape;
- Acceptable cost.
- The information on the display is problematic to read under the bright sun.
Another design that is quite affordable in terms of cost, which is characterized by a decent bundle. In particular, this device comes with two sets of antennas — one standard, the length of which is 17 cm, and elongated — 35.5 cm. The design is quite interesting, the shape is streamlined, all corners are rounded, the body surface will not cut into fingers or palms . The case is made of high-quality medium-density plastic, users in the reviews regularly note the high build quality: there are no backlashes and extraneous squeaks, all elements are carefully fitted, the gaps between them are minimal. The design has a built-in lithium-ion battery, which has a significant resource of work. All controls are located very conveniently. All the keys are plastic, they are pressed with characteristic clicks, the stroke is average, it is not necessary to apply particularly significant efforts when pressing.
The maximum power of the radio station is 10 W, which allows you to use it effectively even at fairly large distances. All settings can be changed by connecting the equipment to a computer — for this you will have to download the appropriate driver and application. The radio operates stably both in open spaces and in difficult terrain. There is a liquid crystal display with three backlight modes, which allows you to comfortably use the equipment both on sunny days and in bad weather or in low light conditions. There is a monitoring function that allows you to capture and listen to even weak signals and scan all channels, there is a connector for connecting a wired headset, which is also very convenient.
- Sufficiently powerful device;
- Long work from one charge of the accumulator;
- Quality assembly;
- Attractive appearance;
- Ease of use.
- Tight connector for connecting an antenna.
1. Baofeng BF-888S
Among inexpensive products, this walkie-talkie is the most popular not only among Russian users, but also among many foreign fans of such equipment — this is evidenced by statistical data from various electronic trading platforms. The radio is equipped with a built-in memory for 16 channels, and they can be programmed only through a personal computer. The model is placed in a plastic case, the assembly is reliable, no complaints. The display is not provided here, which is why it is not possible to access important functions such as activating the noise reduction system. The power of the radio is 5 W, it operates at a frequency of 400-470 MHz. The overall dimensions of the device are 115x60x30 mm — it is quite comfortable to hold in both large and small hands.
This radio has a minimal set of features, but it is quite enough, especially at such a low price. Often, the station is purchased as a spare channel. Along with the design, a battery charger is supplied, there is a clip that allows you to hang the radio on your belt, and there are also headphones. The length of the antenna is 11 cm. The device is also equipped with an alarm and a very powerful LED-type flashlight, the capacity of the lithium-ion battery is 1500 mAh at a voltage of 3.7 V, thanks to which the model is able to work offline for up to 8 hours, the battery will be fully charged within 4 hours.
- Quite decent communication quality;
- Reliable battery that provides long-term operation without recharging;
- Acceptable output power;
- There is everything you need for comfortable use.
- The flashlight starts to flicker after a while.
The best models for fishing and hunting
3. Motorola TLKR-T80 Extreme Quad
This is a very convenient means of communication when used outdoors over short distances, especially when mobile communications are intermittent or not functioning at all. The walkie-talkie is quite simple to use — even a person who has no experience with radio stations can set it up. The device operates in a range that does not need to be registered. In open spaces, the maximum communication range can reach about 10 km, but the manufacturer does not indicate in the instructions that this can be achieved in sunny weather in the absence of wind and only in open areas. For power, you can use standard finger-type batteries or rechargeable batteries, in addition, a built-in nickel-cadmium battery is provided, but it will not be possible to recharge it — you first need to completely plant it, and then put it on charge.
The set went on sale literally a year ago. The kit comes with four walkie-talkies at once — very convenient for hunting enthusiasts, there are also two stations for charging devices. For communication, 8 channels are provided, this is quite enough for a full-fledged conversation. The body is water-resistant rubberized. There is a liquid crystal display type, it is equipped with a convenient backlight and a charge indicator. The mass of one walkie-talkie is 140 grams. The functionality is wide, there is the ability to scan channels, you can simultaneously monitor two channels at once, if necessary, the keyboard is blocked, automatic shutdown is provided.
- Easy to enjoy;
- You can use ordinary finger batteries;
- There is no need to register radios.
- Shows the battery discharge only when it is already completely discharged.
Motorola TLKR-T80 Extreme Quad
2. KENWOOD TK-2406M
This radio operates in the VHF range at a frequency of 136-174 MHz, allows you to provide the highest power of 5 watts. The user can use one of 16 communication channels. There are two programmable buttons on the case, which a person can configure depending on their own needs. The radio has a so-called panic button. In order to quickly select an available communication channel, there are scanning modes. It is worth noting that this model is able to function normally in a fairly wide temperature range — from -30 to +60 degrees. The mass of the product is insignificant, the case is of high quality, made of rubberized materials. On the sides there are rubber inserts that will not allow the walkie-talkie to slip out of your hands. The sound transmission quality is very high, largely due to the installed powerful speaker. The device is perfectly protected from moisture — IPX5 standard.
All settings are programmed using a personal computer or laptop. In addition to the function of high-quality suppression of extraneous noise, there are a number of additional features. In particular, there is a walkie-talkie activation by voice through the headset. The battery power is not very high, so it runs out pretty quickly, especially if the device is in the cold.
- Good workmanship and assembly;
- Clear sound, voice can be heard easily;
- Long service life;
- There is nothing superfluous on the surface of the case.
- Weak battery.
1. Vector VT-43 H2
This device is the best suited for lovers of hunting or fishing. This radio is capable of operating in two bands — VHF 136-174 MHz and UHF 400-470 MHz. The maximum power of the equipment is 5W, if desired, the user can choose low radiation with a power of 1W, which can significantly save battery power. There are quite a lot of memory channels here, all of them are quickly accessed, and switching between frequencies is almost instantaneous. The design is equipped with a functional liquid crystal display, where not only the necessary information is displayed, but there is an additional opportunity to gain access to all the features of the product. In particular, it can be used to adjust the operation of the tone or digital type noise reduction system.
The case of this radio is made of polymeric materials, it has a full-fledged push-button keyboard, where you can enter the required frequency. When scanning the ether range, it is possible to use the frequency grid. The radio has a jack for connecting a wired headset. It is equipped with a fairly powerful lithium-ion battery with a capacity of 2800 mAh, which allows you to achieve a long period of battery life. This radio is quite suitable for daily use in a variety of conditions. The housing is waterproof and also dustproof.
- Display with universal backlight;
- The keyboard, if necessary, is blocked;
- You can program the radio both offline and through a computer connection;
- The case of the increased durability;
- High battery capacity;
- Acceptable cost;
- The battery charge indicator displays actual data.
- Not detected.
Vector VT-43 H2
Walkie-talkies for cars
3.President Lincoln II A.S.C.
It is quite enough to even glance at this device, and it immediately becomes clear — it combines everything you need, which both a sophisticated radio amateur and an ordinary truck driver can wish for. The product is quite complex, it will suit even those who are well versed in radio engineering and the corresponding type of communication. This radio is made on the basis of components of the highest quality. The design is equipped with a multifunctional display, which displays all the necessary data. In particular, it provides information about the frequency, channel number and band letter. The radio station operates in the range of 28-29.7 MHz. There are a lot of settings here, with the right approach to this issue, you can ultimately get the optimal quality of data reception and transmission. If necessary, the user can even adjust the sensitivity of the microphone.
It is possible to adjust the reception frequency, which will ensure a clear sound of the interlocutor’s voice. There are built-in filters that allow you to completely get rid of even the most serious interference. Noise suppressor is available both manual and automatic. If necessary, the display can display information about the mains voltage on board the vehicle, a system of reliable protection against too high voltage or amperage is also provided.
- Made exclusively from the highest quality materials;
- The channel switch is rotary — you do not have to be distracted by it when driving;
- A huge number of fine-tuning equipment;
- Extended functionality of the liquid crystal display;
- The radio station is perfectly protected from high voltage and from its surges.
- To gain access to all the capabilities of the device, you will have to delve into the hardware component of the design.
President Lincoln II ASC
2. MegaJet MJ-333
The radio station has a set of all necessary functions, which allows you to comfortably use it on the road. The device is made in the form of a monoblock with a wired intercom. The case is of high quality, made of metal, the front panel is made of matte black plastic, on which all sorts of dirt, dust and so on will not be noticeable. The walkie-talkie has a liquid-crystal display, information on it is perfectly visible regardless of viewing angles. Illumination amber, LED type. All buttons and other functional elements of the model are also backlit, which has a positive effect on the usability of the design. The headset has no additional elements — only a microphone and a PTT. The assembly of the model is of high quality, we did not meet a single complaint in the user reviews.
In terms of hardware, the radio station is equipped with two noise suppressors at once — automatic and threshold. In general, as the owners of such stations note, they are characterized by low cost and a long service life, during which they retain all their original functions. Overall dimensions are compact, so such a device can be placed even in a passenger vehicle. The speaker is quite loud — its power is 3 W, it is possible to quickly switch to the emergency channel.
- It picks up the signal well even at a considerable distance;
- Acceptable cost;
- High quality workmanship;
- Reception and transmission of the signal occurs at a qualitatively high level;
- A simple device allows you to ensure a long service life of the equipment.
- Automatic noise reduction makes the reception a bit rough.
1 Optim Voyager
This is a modified model of the previous generation. The creators tried to take into account all the comments and wishes of users, as well as the latest trends in the market for radio stations operating in the CB range. The result is a rather interesting and stylish design. The complete set is no different from the standard one — a headset and accessories for mounting in the car are supplied with the walkie-talkie. The case is made of die-cast aluminum with additional stiffening ribs, which reliably protects the radio from various kinds of defects. The liquid crystal display located on the front panel of the radio is color and has a night mode. It displays a large amount of various information that will be useful to the user, including a status indicator. In addition to it, on the case you can find six hardware function buttons, the purpose of which, if necessary, can be programmed.
Keys for quick transition to the general or rescue channel are provided. Like the previous model, there are two types of noise suppressor here — spectral and threshold. It is worth noting that the device will consume power if only the time is displayed. However, the developers of the radio say that this moment can be reduced to almost zero if you set the supply voltage to 12.5 V or even less.
- Inexpensive, but quite effective equipment;
- Color liquid crystal display;
- All functional elements have LED backlighting;
- Easy to use regardless of the time of day.
- Not detected.
In conclusion, a useful video
Well, that’s the end of our review of the best walkie-talkies of 2020. For each model, we have collected a maximum of information, therefore, as we would like to believe, now you can easily choose the best products for yourself. If you still have doubts or unresolved questions, you can ask us in the comments — we will try to quickly respond to them and give you a comprehensive answer.