5 Best Handheld Two-Way Radios (Reviews Updated 2022)

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Handheld two-way radios (also known as walkie talkies) are an excellent way to stay connected when other forms of communication, such as cellular service, are limited or not available. These devices work with radio signals, sending out and receiving them; in other words, users use these devices to talk to one another. Since radio signals are available virtually everywhere, these devices are extremely useful, as you are almost guaranteed to pick up a signal.

If you’re going to be spending any time in a remote location and you need to stay connected, a handheld two-way radio is definitely something that you should consider investing in. But, like all types of technology, there are so many different options available. To help you on your quest for finding the best handheld two-way radio, we’ve put together this handy review, which features our top picks for the best devices and includes some useful information about two-way radio communication.

First, let’s take a look at the handheld two-way radios we’ve selected:

Best Handheld Two-Way Radios


1. Cobra ACXT1035R FLT Walkie Talkie

Cobra Acxt1035r Flt Walkie TalkieThe first option on our list of the best handheld two-way radios is the Cobra ACXT1035R FLT Walkie Talkie. Cobra is a highly reputable manufacturer of a variety of communication devices, including CB radios, and ham radios. All of the products that they offer are outfitted with the latest technology; plus, they’re super durable and very easy to use. Their AXCT1035R FLT Walkie Talkie definitely lives up to the Cobra name. It can transmit and receive signals up to 37 miles away, which makes it a long range two-way radio or a long range walkie talkie.

Not only do these devices offer extended signal range, but they also feature a total of 2,662 channel combinations, so you’ll have access to plenty of channels without having to worry about a lot of interference. It also acts as a weather radio, as it receives NOAA weather alerts that will notify you of an upcoming storms or emergencies.

Thanks to VOX voice detection technology, it transmits without having to push any buttons, so you’ll be able to keep your hands free and available for any task you may be working on. It’s a completely waterproof two-way radio and it actually floats, so if you drop it in the water, it won’t sink! And, thanks to the bright orange color, you’ll have no trouble spotting it.

Lastly, this device features VibrAlert, which uses vibrating feedback to let you know when you’re receiving transmissions. Given the distances that it works over and the features that it boasts, it would make an excellent hunting two-way radio.

What We Like About It

  • 37 mile range
  • It’s fully waterproof and it floats
  • Bright orange color is easy to see
  • Offers more than 2660 channel combinations for easy and private communication
  • Receives NOAA weather updates and alerts
  • Hands-free operation

Reasons to Complain

  • A few users said that it drained through battery power quickly

Final Verdict: If you’re looking for a waterproof, long range two-way radio that offers an array of handy features, the Cobra ACXT1035R FLT Walkie Talkie is a great choice. It’s easy to use, gets great reception, works over long distances, and boasts plenty of useful features.

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2. MURS Hand Held Two-Way Radio, M5380-HT

Murs Hand Held Two Way Radio, M538 HtIf you’re on the market for a shortwave radio, the MURS Hand Held Two-Way Radio, M5380-HT is a good option. It sends and receives messages from all other radio units that are made by the manufacturer, which means you’ll be able to connect with a large community; plus, it’s durable and offers some great features.

This device can transmit and receive signals up to 2 miles away. It offers five channels (all of which have five operating frequencies) and 38 privacy channels, so there are plenty of combinations to choose for increased privacy. It’s also outfitted with an earphone jack, which further improves privacy.

It’s in full compliance with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), too, so there’s no need to worry about getting a license; something that is needed with other handheld ham radios and two-way radios. This device is powered by six AA batteries, it has a lightweight, compact design, and it’s easy to use.

What We Like About It

  • It has a 2 mile range
  • Boasts five channels and 38 sub-channels for increased privacy
  • Features an earphone jack
  • Complies with the FCC
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Easy to use

Reasons to Complain

  • A few users noted that it isn’t as durable as they hoped it would be

Final Verdict: If you need a reliable way to stay connected by you don’t need to communicate over great distances, the MURS Hand Held Two-Way Radio, M538-HT is a good option. It has a 2 mile range and offers all of the basic features. While it doesn’t have all of the bells and whistles that other handheld two-way radios have, it’s still a reliable radio.

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3. Baofeng UV-82 UP UHF FM Transceiver Dual Band Two Way Radio

Baofeng Uv 82 Up Uhf Fm Transceiver Dual Band Two Way RadioIf you need reliable communication in remote areas, but you don’t want to spend a lot of money, the Baofeng UV-82 UP UHF FM Transceiver Dual Band Two Way Radio is a good choice. It’s offers all of the basic features that you would expect from a handheld two-way radio; plus, it’s lightweight, compact, and it won’t weigh you down.

This device has two power settings: high (5 watts) and low (1 watt), and it’s programmable. Its frequency ranges between 65 and 108 MHz (which is limited to commercial FM radio reception). ON VHF, the frequency range is between 135 and 174 MHz, and on UHF, it’s between 400 and 520 MHz. It offers plenty of channel combinations to ensure privacy, as well as storage for 128 group channels.

Plus, you can change the names of the channels to whatever you prefer. The device is powered by a 1800 mAh battery and has a keypad lock to prevent accidental channel changes. Other notable features include a tone time-out timer, a channel monitor, a battery saver setting, and a built-in LED flashlight.

What We Like About It

  • Features a bright, easy to read, LCD screen, and the color can be changed
  • Outfitted with safety features, like an emergency alarm, a built-in flashlight, and a keypad lock
  • Offers storage for 128 group channels
  • The reception is clear
  • It’s easy to use
  • The price is very affordable

Reasons to Complain

  • Some customers said that the unit wasn’t as durable as they had hoped

Final Verdict: The Baofeng UV-82 UP UHF FM Transceiver Dual Band Two-Way Radio is an affordable handheld two-way radio that offers a variety of features, is easy to use, and provides reliable, clear reception and transmission.

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4. Greaval Rechargeable Walkie Talkies

Greaval Rechargeable Walkie TalkiesThe Greaval Rechargeable Walkie Talkies comes with four long-range walkie talkies. They would be ideal for use as a business two-way radio, for hunting, for hiking, or for any activity that requires communication with a group of people.

Each walkie talkie in this set features 16 preset memory channels and has a five watt power output. They can transmit and receive signals up to three miles away in an open space that’s free of obstructions; in buildings, they can operate up to 50 stories away, and in residential buildings, they can be used to communicate up to 1.5 miles away. A 50ohm antenna on each radio and a high quality speaker allows for crystal clear reception.

These handheld two-way radios are outfitted with VOX, so they can be used hands-free, and they offer an emergency alarm, as well as a low battery alarm, which lets you know when it’s time to charge up the lithium ion batteries. They have a UFH frequency range between 400 and 470 MHz, and each unit is equipped with a built-in LED flashlight. They also come with a earpiece and a hand strap for total ease of use.

What We Like About It

  • Comes with four long range walkie talkies
  • Features 16 preset memory channels
  • Powered by rechargeable 1500 mAh lithium ion batteries, which can hold their power for up to 20 hours
  • Has a range of up to 3 miles (in open areas)
  • Features a built-in flashlight
  • Emergency and low battery alarm

Reasons to Complain

  • Some users said that they ran out of battery power a lot faster than advertised

Final Verdict: The Greaval Rechargeable Walkie Talkies come with four long range two-way radios that are durably built and are equipped with all of the standard features, as well as a few extras, to allow for easy, reliable communication.

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5. Retevis H-777 Two Way Radios UHF Radio 2 Way Radios

Retevis H 777 Two Way Radios Uhf Radio 2 Way RadiosLast on our list of the best handheld two-way radios is the Retevis H-777 Two Way Radios UHF Radio 2 Way Radios. This set comes with a total of 10 high quality walkie talkies, making it an ideal choice for anyone who has a large group of people that needs to stay in contact.

All 10 devices in this set are preset to the same frequency and the same channel, which makes for hassle-free communication as soon as you take them out of the box.

All units are equipped with a voice prompt function, so the group can be easily located without having to take their hands off their tasks. There are 16 channels and 50 privacy settings for added privacy, and each unit features a built-in flashlight.

What We Like About It

  • Comes with a total of 10 hands-free walkie talkies
  • Each unit has 16 channels and 50 privacy codes
  • The units are set to the same frequency and the same channel for instant connectivity right out of the box
  • All devices support hands-free communication
  • Offers clear reception
  • Easy to use
  • Every device has a built-in flashlitght
  • For the number of units you receive, the price is very affordable

Reasons to Complain

  • A few users said that the range on these walkie talkies was pretty limited

Final Verdict: If you have a large group of people that needs to stay connected over a short area, the Retevis H-77 Two Way Radios UHF Radio 2 Way Radios is a good option. It comes with 10 individual units, and each one offers all of the necessary features, are easy to use, and offers clear reception.

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The Best Handheld Two-Way Radio: A Buyer’s Guide

Best Handheld Two Way Radio ReviewsCellphones are great, but sometimes, they aren’t reliable. Why? – Because in order to work, they have to be within relatively close range of a cellular tower. That means that if you’re in a remote location, such as the woods, an island, high up in the mountains, or even inside a building with thick walls, you can’t use them. Fortunately, there is a way that you can stay connected in these types of locations. How? – With a handheld two-way radio.

What is a Handheld Two-Way Radio?

A handheld two-way radio, more commonly referred to as a walkie talkie, is a handheld communication device. It sends out and receives radio signals, which can be accessed virtually everywhere, so you can stay in touch with the people you need to connected to, even when there ‘s no cell phone service.

In addition to making remote communication possible, some two-way handheld radios also boast handy features; for example, some can receive weather reports and emergency alerts from NOAA, have built-in flashlights, and can be used as FM radios, too. There are many options that also features hands-free technology, which means that you can communicate without having to hold the device or push any buttons; just strap it onto a holster and it uses voice recognition to send and transmit signals.

How do Handheld Two-Way Radios Work?

Handheld two-way radios work by sending out and receiving message via radio signals. As such, in order for two devices to communicate with each other, they need to be within sight of one another; however, there are models that can operate in obstructed areas, such as through multi-level buildings.

These devices are outfitted with a number of channels. The devices that are communicating with each other need to be set to the same channel in order to work. Frequencies and power vary from model to model, which affects their range.

Factors to Consider

In order to find a two-way radio that suits your needs, there are a few factors that you’re going to want to take into consideration:

  • The range refers to the distance that the devices can send and transmit signals over. If you want to communicate over a longer distance, you’re going to want to invest in a long-range two-way radio; some models can transmit and receive signals over distances that exceed 30 miles! Shorter range models usually operate over distances of up to 3 miles.
  • The more compact and lightweight the device is, the easier it will be to transport.
  • Voice activation. If hands-free operation is important, look for a model that supports VOX technology.
  • Battery power. The stronger the battery is, the longer the device will hold its charge, which is important because you don’t want to have to keep charging up or replacing batteries.
  • Additional features. As mentioned, some two-way radios are outfitted with a variety of features, such as NOAA weather alerts, built-in flashlights, and more.

Summing It Up

With a handheld two-way radio, you’ll be able to stay connected in virtually any location. All of the devices featured on our list are well-designed, offer clear reception, and are easy to use; some also offer additional features, such as weather alerts and flashlights. No matter what your needs may be, you’ll find a handheld two-way radio to meet them in this review.

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