The Beginner's Guide to Choosing the Best Long Range Walkie Talkie

With tons of brands out there like Olympia, Midland, and Motorola, it can be challenging to determine which ones are the best for your two-way radio needs. Whether you need it to communicate on a construction site or during a camping trip, long range walkie talkies work where there is little to no cell reception. They also tend to be more durable than your average smartphone.

Ideally, you want to take range into consideration when looking for the right long range walkie talkie. Range varies based on conditions like terrain and weather. Then you have to consider frequencies, durability, battery options, and pricing.

Some walkie talkies require that you obtain an FCC license before operating them. In addition to becoming licensed, learning how to communicate as a professional via a two-way radio goes a long way in your success with using walkie talkies.

Continue reading to find the best long range walkie talkie based on your specific needs.

1. Midland GXT1000VP4

The Midland GXT1000VP4 is ideal for up to 36 miles in range in optimal weather conditions and terrain types. It has 50 channels available with 285 privacy codes allowing for secure communication. It also has channels that keep you up-to-date with the latest weather alerts from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

This walkie talkie supports the JIS4 standard for waterproofing allowing for light rain or splashing. The battery lasts an average of 11 hours. It has two options for power: a rechargeable battery pack or four AA batteries.

On average, you can purchase a pair of Midland GXT1000VP4 walkie talkies for $70.

2. Uniden GMR5089-2CKHS

The Uniden GMR5089-2CKHS has a range of up to 50 miles. It comes equipped with fifteen GMRS and seven FRS channels. Users can also obtain the latest weather broadcast alerts from NOAA.

What makes the Uniden GMR5089-2CKHS stand out from the rest is that it is ideal for wet conditions as it is submersible to a certain extent. With JIS7 specs, this Uniden walkie talkie is fully waterproof and entirely submersible. It will even float to the surface when it is dropped into water.

It also has a direct call feature where you can contact each other one-on-one without speaking with everyone else on your channel. The average cost for the Uniden GMR5089-2CKHS is $100.

3. Cobra RX680

The Cobra RX680 has a range of up to 38 miles in optimal conditions. It has 22 channels and has access to the latest local weather alerts. It is water-resistant under IP54 standards. It comes with a rechargeable battery that can last for up to 18 hours per charge. 

Weather alerts are also available with this walkie talkie, making it even more appealing to those using them on hikes and camping trips. Weather can change from fair to disastrous in a flash, with little to no warning. The weather broadcast allows you to change plans before you get caught in a storm.

The average price for the Cobra RX680 is around $90.

4. Dewalt DXFRS300

The Dewalt DXFRS300 uses FRS signals and spans up to 37 miles in range during ideal weather and terrain conditions. There are 22 channels available and they also have privacy codes for a more secure connection to the other walkie. 

This walkie talkie is higher on the durability scale as it can withstand a drop from up to two meters and is resistant to water and dust via the IP67 standard. It comes with a 2000mAh Lithium Polymer battery that lasts on the longer side of 12 hours. It costs approximately $190 for a pair of these walkie talkies.

5. Olympia R100

The Olympia R100 Long Range Radio is another top contender when it comes to range. It gives a range of 37 miles in optimal conditions. It has 50 channels that you can flip through to find one with little interference and ideal communication. It also has seven channels that can give you weather updates via the NOAA.

It is just as durable compared to some of these other walkie talkies because it is resistant to water and dust. It is rated waterproof under the IP54 standard stating that it is protected from any angle that dirt and water may come into contact with the walkie talkie.

The Olympia R100 uses a AA NiMH rechargeable battery pack.  For a pair of Olympia R100 walkies, it will cost about $80.

6. Motorola Talkabout T460

The Motorola Talkabout T460 has a range of up to 35 miles in optimal conditions while allowing up to 2 miles in city conditions from all of the possible obstructions. It contains 22 FRS/GMRS channels with 121 privacy codes.

The walkie talkie comes with a NiMH rechargeable battery pack or they can be swapped out with 3 AA batteries when needed.  

While previous versions would have required a certain licensing, the Motorola Talkabout T460 no longer requires an FCC license. On average, you will find that the pair of walkie talkies costs approximately $80.

7. Backcountry Access BC Link 2.0

On the higher end of the price spectrum, you will find the Backcountry Access BC Link 2.0. You can expect it to cost nearly $200. With 22 FRS GMRS channels including 121 sub-channels meant to ensure minimal interference. Depending on the conditions, you may find that it has a range of up to 40 miles.

The BC Link 2.0 is also waterproof by the IP56 standard. This walkie talkie will continue to work if it comes in contact with snow through more frigid temperatures. The battery power for the BC Link 2.0 has an integrated 2300mAh lithium-ion battery that cannot be removed. Normal use allows up to 80 hours per charge while lasting up to 400 hours on standby.

Finding the Best Long Range Walkie Talkie For You

While there are many different brands out there, the best long range walkie talkie for your will be based on your specific needs. How far away will your walkie talkies be from each other? Do they need to be waterproof or shock resistant? How much money can you invest in the purchase? Make sure to consider all of your options before making your purchase.

Check out our latest buying guides on all things relating to two-way radios, over.

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