The Handheld 2 Meter Radio For 2023

Nicolas Ward By, Nicolas Ward
Updated
BAOFENG BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) 8-Watt Dual Band Two-Way Radio
Image credit: Amazon.com

The Rundown

1. Best Overall: BAOFENG BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) 8-Watt Dual Band Two-Way Radio

The BF-F8HP is a compact, powerful and easy-to-use radio. With the new in-depth manual that guides you through the capabilities and customization of the BF-F8HP, this no-nonsense radio is a perfect choice for beginners. Read Review

2. Best Bang For The Buck: Yaesu Original FT-65 FT-65R 144/440 Dual-Band Rugged

The Yaesu FT65R is a 14-channel, 2.4GHz transceiver with 100W output power and an IP54 rating for the most challenging conditions. The FT65R is supplied with a 1950mAh Li-Ion battery pack that can be recharged in approximately 3 hours using an external charger. Read Review

3. Best Economical: Baofeng UV-5R 1800mAh Battery Rechargeable Two Way Radios Long Range

With two-way radios and a 1800mAh battery this Baofeng UV-5R is able to be used for hours on end. It only needs one AA battery to operate and offers a range of up to 3 miles. This radio also comes with a 771 antenna which can increase the communication distance. This model features an LCD screen that displays call information and channel selection. Read Review

4. Best Economical: TYT TH-UV8000D High Power Dual Band Handheld Transceiver

The TYT TH-UV8000D is the newest member of the TYT family. This model features an extra long range, dual band design, with a huge antenna and built-in battery that provides 4 hours of use on a single charge. Read Review

A handheld 2-meter radio is a radio that operates on the 2-meter ham radio band. Radio bands are used for short-range communications between stations to maintain direct contact with as little intervening separation as possible. Due to their short range and frequency allocation, they are best suited for local or regional communication.

The majority of commercially available handheld 2-m radios fall into one of three groups: digital (or "digital hybrid"), analog, or so called "digital hybrids". Within each type there are many brands, models and price points. Here we take a look at everything from general features to in-depth reviews and comparisons to help you find the best handheld 2-m radio for your needs.

We think the highly recommended product for the handheld 2 meter radio is the BAOFENG BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) 8-Watt Dual Band Two-Way Radio with  a new in-depth manual. In case you need more alternatives and more in-depth guidance, you may explore the following.

Our Top Picks

High / Med / Low Power Settings (8W, 4W, 1W); Frequency Range: VHF: 136-174 MHz(Rx/Tx). UHF: 400-520 MHz(Rx/Tx); Broad (Wide) / Narrowband (Narrow) Selectable

Upgrades from our Previous Generation UV-5R: Twice the Output Power (8 watts up from 4 watts output), New Hardened Durable Radio Shell, 30% Larger Battery, V-85 High Gain Antenna (Twice the Antenna Performance), USA Support + In-depth User Guide Included; A PC03 FTDI Programming Cable is Recommended for Easier PC Programming

Kit Includes: BF-F8HP, 2100mAh Battery, V-85 Dual Band Antenna, CH-5 Charger, CH-5 110V Adapter, Earpiece Kit, Wrist Strap, Belt Clip, User Manual

The BF-F8HP was designed in the USA and because not everyone is a radio-expert we really wanted to focus on providing an easier user experience! That starts with the new in-depth manual that guides you through the capabilities and customization of the BF-F8HP. On top of that the BF-F8HP also includes exclusive concierge customer help and warranty support. This concierge service is only available on select BaoFeng models such as the BF-F8HP, UV-82HP, and UV-5X3

BTECH is proud to be in the USA, which allows you to have the best available local support for any issue that may arise. BTECH only engineers and develops radio products. That brand focus allows you to have the best available radios and accessories with the most features, with real USA warranty and support.

TOP Choice #2 Yaesu Original FT-65 FT-65R 144/440 Dual-Band Rugged
Our Score:
9.6
YAESU

The FT-65R features a newly designed large white background LED display

The big front internal speaker provides 1 full watt of powerful, crisp and clear audio

The FT65R is supplied with a 1950mAh Li-Ion battery pack that is capable of over 9 hours of operation.

Offers up to 5W of output power along with lower power settings of 2.5W and 0.5W.

Boasts an IP54 rating along with MIL-810-C, D and E.

Package Include: 2 X Portable radio, 2 X Baofeng Antenna, 2 X 771 Soft Antenna ,2 X 1800mAh Li-ion battery, 2 X Charger ,2 X Belt clip ,2 X The sling ,2 X Earpiece ,2 X User's manual,1 X Progarmming cable,2 X Speaker

With Function VFO & Memory channels scan,Dual display / Dual standby/ Auto Keypad Lock

【3】In addition to the original Baofeng antenna, we also gave away a bend freely 2X771 soft antenna to increase the communication distance and make your conversation smoother.

【NOTE:】This equipment has been tested and found to comply with the limits for a Class B digital device, pursuant to part 15 of the FCC Rules. FFC ID: 2AJGM-UV5R

The Baofeng UV-5R is necessary for traveling, survival, hiking, cycling, work, camping, fishing, Emergency Alarm. it is Walkie talkie lover's favorite.

5.Package Include:TYT TH-UV8000D Walkie Talkies*1, 7.2V/3600mAh Li-ion Battery*2, USB programming cable*1, Antenna*2(High Gain One included), Desktop Charger*1, Power Adapter*1, User Manual*1

2.Frequency: TX: VHF 144-148mhz (2m) UHF 420-450mhz (70cm), RX: VHF 136-174mhz, UHF 400-520mhzSoftware:Download programming software & driver on TYT official website.

1.▲▲☞FONGHOO☜▲▲ Official Distributor of TYT. Frequency Range: VHF UHF, Dual band,Dual display,Dual standby, a spare battery, USB programming cable, FCC certificate portable walkie talkie. FCC ID: POD-ANG8

3.Function:,128*2 channel to store, 25 channels, 1750 Tone, CTCSS/DCS,VOX,ANI,MSK,DTMF&Remote kill/stun function,Reverse frequency function.

4. Equipped with 38cm High Gain Antenna and 10W ultra-high output power to guatantee a father and stable communication range. Radio Size:2.32*1.42*4.53 inch;Weight:0.46l

【5】Package Include: 2X Portable radio 2X Baofeng Antenna 2X 771 Soft Antenna 2X 1800mAh Li-ion battery 2X 3800mAh Li-ion battery 2X Charger 2X Belt clip 2X The sling 2X Earpiece 2X User's manual

【4】In addition to the original Baofeng antenna, we also gave away a bend freely 771 soft antenna to increase the communication distance and make your conversation smoother.

【3】On the basis of the original 1800 mAh battery, we additionally provided a 3800 mAh high-capacity battery with a direct charging hole for easy charging. working time more durable.

【1】The Baofeng UV-82 is High Power.Low/Medium/High three section power adjustable.

【2】Dual PTT / dual display / dual standby Auto Keypad Lock. FCC Part 15 Part 97 Certified,FFC ID: 2AJGM-UV82.

HAM Guides Quick Reference Card Included

Bundle - 3 Items

Yaesu FT-60R Dual-band Handheld Radio, 5W

Radiowavz Antenna Tape - Help Create your own Homebrew Antenna from 2m - 30m

Bundle - 3 Items

Yaesu FT-65R - 2 Meter/70cm Dual Band FM Handheld Transceiver

Radiowavz Antenna Tape - Help Create your own Homebrew Antenna from 2m - 30m

HAM Guides Quick Reference Card Included

The Atlantis 155’s submersible, Floating Handheld design allows you to stay secure and connected while having fun on the water.

Receives all Marine Radio Channels, including all USA, Canada, and International Marine VHF channels (includes the new 4-digit channels and Canadian “B” channels) and receives all NOAA Weather Channels and Alerts

It Floats, meets the toughest Waterproof standards IPX8 / JIS8, and even clears its speaker of water after being submerged. And with its compact size it’s never far away when you need to stay in touch the most.

When every inch of space count, you still want the important features that will keep you safe at sea. The Atlantis 155 doesn’t sacrifice big features to keep its profile small.

NiMH Rechargeable 4xAAA, 950mAh NiMH rechargeable batteries and DC charging cable included. 3 Watt Transmit Power with user selectable 3W or 1W Transmit power. 3 Year Warranty and Full 3 year Waterproof Warranty.

With the Largest LCD screen in its class 25mm (h) x 40mm (w), and Paper White Backlight display for Day Time, and Red Backlight display for Night Time, it’s the radio you won’t leave shore without.

✔ Easy Programming: More convenient to manual programming most of settings via the keypad, as well as PC programming with the cable in the box. SUPPORT CHIRP.

✔ 96 Hours Battery Life: Come with two 2200mAh high-capacity batteries this radio has a continuous working time of 12 hours under 10W (high) power mode, 24 hours life under 5W/1W (med/low) power mode and 96 hours on standby. Supports you longer, especially in emergency situation.

✔ What's in the Box: GA-510 Radio, 2 x 2200 mAh rechargeable batteries, programming cable, dual band antenna, charger, adapter, belt clip, wrist strap, earpiece and user manual.

✔ Dual Band, Dual Watch, Dual Display. Completed with a hard case outside, supports using for years, especially for business and outdoor using, like at the construction field, security work, survival rescue.

✔ Tri-Power & Long Range: A further and more impressive communication range comes from the 10W high power feature. The Radioddity GA-510 can be set in 3 power modes (high/medium/low) (10W, 5W, 1W) to give you the best talking quality under different circumstances.

Receives all Marine Radio Channels, including all USA, Canada, and International Marine VHF channels (includes the new 4-digit channels and Canadian “B” channels) and receives all NOAA Weather Channels and Alerts.

Built to throw in your pocket or tuck away on deck, its compact size is never far away when you need to stay in touch the most.

It Floats, meets the toughest Waterproof standards IPX8 / JIS8, and even clears its speaker of water after being submerged. 6 Watt Transmit Power, with User selectable 6W, 2.5W, or 1W Transmit power.

Includes Built-in Lion battery pack, AC & DC charging cables, and charging cradle. 3 Year Warranty and Full 3 year Waterproof Warranty.

The Atlantis 275 comes with 6 Watts of Big-Ocean Power in a compact Submersible Floating Handheld VHF Marine Radio, and even includes an Emergency Strobe Light and built-in Flashlight Feature.

With the Largest LCD screen in its class 25mm (h) x 40mm (w), and Paper White Backlight display for Day Time and Red Backlight display for Night Time, it’s the radio you won’t leave shore without.

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What to Look For in a handheld 2 meter radio?

Looking for the handheld 2 meter radio requires consideration of many criteria. Product learning varies in type, feature, and customer ranking. Overall, it comes with several difficulties in buying. So, we are available to support you occasionally.

It is beneficial for you to have a closer look at the things below to evaluate and then choose which one is suitable:

Number Of Handsets

You will need as many handsets as you can afford when purchasing two-way radios. While a twin-set may suffice for camping trips, busy warehouses might need more to ensure everyone is connected. The price per handset drops when you purchase in bulk. To meet every customer's requirements, we offer many two-way radio packages. If you need to add more handsets, we also have single handsets.

Battery Type

Many two-way radios can be powered with regular alkaline batteries. Others have rechargeable batteries that include a dock. Two-way radios should not be used for longer than one day without power access. A model that takes both regular and multiple batteries is a better option if you are going on camping trips. We recommend regular 2-way rechargeable radios. This is because used batteries are expensive and can cause damage to the environment.

Channels & Privacy Codes

Two-way radios that are license-free have a fixed frequency they can transmit on. PMR446 The majority of two-way radios without a license have 8 to 16 channels. These tune the frequency at which handsets communicate. There are usually privacy codes in addition to channels. These codes do not protect your transmissions, contrary to the title. They allow you to talk freely and without being interrogated by others. This can prove problematic if your use them in an area such as a ski resort, where many other two-way radios are in use.

Weatherproofing

You can't keep your two-way hidden in your bag, but there is a good chance it will be exposed to other conditions than the cool, mild, early summer sun when there is a gentle breeze blowing. It is important to consider the weatherproofing of your two-way. If you reside in an area with moderate temperatures and light to predictable rains, some models can withstand splashing water.
An entirely waterproof radio is an option. Many models are waterproof and can withstand severe rain. Some models can be submerged up to 30 minutes without causing any damage. A model that floats will be your best option if your radio is used for fisherman, fishing or crossing open waters. If you drop your model accidentally, it can be easily picked up from the water surface.

Weight And Size

Both weight and size play a major role in carrying all you need. Two-way radios are small and lightweight, so they can be carried in a bag or attached to your belt. Although smaller units can be more affordable than larger models, they might not offer as many features or provide the same protection. Heavy-duty, impact-resistant two-way units that are heavier and more durable are a better choice for outdoor enthusiasts who want to be tough.

Maximum Range

When choosing a 2-way radio, the first thing to think about is how far you want them to travel. Consumer 2-way radios with a transmit power of 0.75W and the PMR446 frequency can travel up to 10 km. This could be possible only in the ideal circumstances: high above ground with no obstructions between radios. This range is unlikely to be achieved unless you use your walkie-talkies to connect between mountaintops. The maximum range in a dense urban setting is more likely to be lower. A good radio will provide sufficient range to reach the majority of people. You will require more power and range than that. They are more costly than the license-free model and require a license.

Emergency Features

Your two-way radio is a great tool for emergency planning, whether you are camping, hiking or hunting. An Emergency Alert radio sends an alert to all radios within your radio group in case you need immediate help. There are many types of emergency alerts available, and they vary from brand to model. Some alerts combine a beacon flashing S.O.S with international Morse Code, others send a loud alarm to members of the group. These alerts block any activity on radios and get louder until someone responds.

FAQs

What Is The Life Expectancy Of A 2 Way Radio?

Two-way radios of commercial grade are made to comply with Military Specifications as well as Intrusion Protection standards. These radios can live for a long time if they are maintained and used in accordance with the specifications. Two-way radios can last up to 10 years. But radio batteries rarely last more than 3 to 4 years.

How Many Radios Can I Use One Location?

You can use as many radios at any location you wish, regardless of the license. To manage communication better, we suggest that the channel's users be limited to ten.

How Far Do 2 Way Radios Broadcast?

Broadcast distances of commercial-grade hand-held radios are generally between one and two miles. While VHF radios can broadcast further, they do not penetrate as far. UHF radios transmit a greater distance and have better penetration.

Can I Change The Frequencies On My 2 Way Radios?

Many commercial-grade 2 way radios can be programmed from either a computer onboard or via a PC. Although you cannot change VHF to UHF, the radio can be programmed with a PC or on-board programming. However, it can alter the frequencies in the band.

Is VHF Or UHF Better?

The frequency band that a radio can operate within is called VHF (very high frequency), or UHF [ultra high frequency]. VHF operates between 136 and 174 MHz, while UHF operates between 400 and 512 MHz. Wave length is shorter the higher frequency. A signal will travel farther if it has a longer wave length. It is easier for the signal's to penetrate if the wave length is shorter. VHF broadcasts better over open water and from an unobstructed location to another. For broadcasting through buildings or other obstructions, UHF is better than VHF.

Why Do 2 Way Radios Have Multiple Channels?

Every channel can be programed at a different frequency. Most modern 2 way radios can have between 4 and 16 channels, although some radios may have up to 256 channels. Channel one will be the only channel that broadcasts on the frequency being used. It is beneficial for commercial applications to have different communication depending on the work group or whereabouts. Radios can be used by schools to broadcast the news. Teachers and administrators might prefer one channel.

What Is 2 Way Radio VOX?

Voice activation is VOX. VOX promises hands-free operation. "Speak and the radio will open to broadcast your message." However, voice activation should actually be called sound activation. The VOX function on a 2-way radio can't distinguish between a call to help or the usual grunts, groans and grunts of normal physical activity. VOX may cause more problems than it solves. We do not recommend VOX being used in commercial applications.

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About Nicolas Ward

Nicolas Ward

Nicolas Ward is an elite author with many years of experience in the music field and the owner of many engaging articles at TheAudioCritic. He studies music production and has many years of passionate research into sound systems. Appearing in many popular newspapers, Nicolas Ward provides useful knowledge and the latest information on music and sound.

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