Hand Held radios are low priced and can be very useful. Hunters, fishermen or your family out on an outing staying in contact is beneficial.
The plus side is if it gets dropped in a lake, river or is lost in the woods you are not out the price of a smart phone.
Programmable VHF/UHF Hand Held Radios
Baofeng – TYT
Abaree – JJCC
Ailunce – Wouxun
Generally Programmable Radios will transmit on 136-174 mhz and 400-520 mhz. Allowing you to program and store 128 memory channels.
Channelized VHF/UHF Hand Held Radio
Midland – Cobra
Retevis – Btech
Motorola – GTX
Generally Channelized Radios transmit on FRS, MURS or GMRS Frequencies.
Channelized radios transmit on:
FRS(Family Radio Service) *No license required.
MURS (Multi Use Radio Service) *No license required.
GMRS((General Mobile Radio Service) *License Required.
Marine Radio Service *No license required.
There are many brands of VHF/UHF hand held radios available and if used and properly cared for any brand will likely serve your needs.
Programmable Radio will have detachable antennas.
This will allow you to add/attach a better, high quality antenna and make your Hand Held radio more effecent and allow you to reliably communicate over longer distances.
Channelized radios do not have detachable antennas.
*Alkaline battery and Zinc-carbon battery is Non-rechargeable.
***Lithium batteries should not be confused with lithium-ion as they are rechargeable.
**Mercury battery is a non-rechargeable battery.
**Nickel cadmium and nickel oxide hydroxide are rechargeable.
How far can you talk on a Hand Held radio
Communciations range/distance is highly dependent on several factors.
Radio power output in watts of RF(Radio Frequency) energy. 5 watts is better than 1/2(0.50) or 2 watts.
Antenna length, longer is usually better.
Terran, heavily wooded areas city buildings, hills and mountains will reduce your communications range. 5 watt radios can be expected to reliability communicate from 1/2 to about 5 miles over mostly open flat terrain.