0333 123 3050

Call us for expert advice
Monday to Friday, 8.30am-5.30pm

Call for expert advice
How to choose two Way Radios

How to choose Two-way radios
Let us help you make the right decision

With the vast selection of Two way radios available in today’s market, it can be difficult to differentiate between them to find the product that exactly suits your needs.

Not all two way radios are suitable for every environment or activity so choosing the right one is important. Some key factors to consider before purchase are the range, frequency, licenses and robustness of the radios but using this guide should make the job a lot easier. For this reason we have created this guide to help you choose the best two-way radio for your needs.

How to choose two Way Radios

WHAT AM I USING THE TWO-WAY RADIO FOR?

Two way radio for Professional Use

For Professional Use

two-way radios are essential when working in the construction, security and events management industries. With hundreds of tasks being carried out simultaneously it can be difficult to keep track of what’s going on at all times. Considerably easier than using a mobile phone, two-way radios keep you in constant communication and allow you to manage those tasks with greater ease.

Two way radio For Leisure Use

For Leisure Use

We recommend using a two-way radio for activities such as hiking, camping and sailing. Typically these environments don't have the greatest mobile phone signal and often carry a certain degree of risk. A two-way radio gives you a greater sense of safety knowing someone is merely a touch of a button away. This security is reinforced by added features such as the emergency alert buttons on certain models.


WHAT RANGE DO I NEED?


Environment

The range can vary from a few hundred metres anything up to a number of miles. One of the greatest limiting factors of the two-way radio is the surrounding environment.


Is there any obstruction?

The 3 mile range of a device in an open space might be up to five times less in a densely packed city landscape; consider this if you plan to use the device for both indoor and outdoor activities.


VHF or UHF?

Very High Frequency (VHF) is commonly used for long range communication in open areas, while Ultra High Frequency (UHF) is better suited to use in urban areas as it will penetrate through built-up areas and dense forests.


WHAT FEATURES DO I NEED TO CONSIDER?

Depending on the usage, the following features need to be taken into consideration when purchasing a two-way radio. For instance, construction site workers will be looking for a robust radio, while campers will look for a radio with a high IP rating.

  • Licensed free or licensed
  • Radio frequency
  • Range of transmission
  • IP ratings & Robustness

Other features:

Shockproof

Shockproof

Resists damage when dropped or knocked

Model Size

Model Size

The dimensions of the device itself

Scan Function

Scan Function

Scan channels in order to find communication

Emergency Call

Emergency Call

Automatically calls for assistance in an emergency situation

Emergency Call

Channels/Sub-channels

Channels allow you to tune the device to specific frequencies.

Emergency Call

Screen Display

The visual display on the two-way radio face

Emergency Call

Weight

Worth taking into consideration, depending on your intended use

Hands-free

Hands-free

VOX function; allows you to speak without pressing any buttons


WHAT ARE PTT AND VOX FUNCTIONS?


Do you need hands-free communication?

VOX mode (Voice-Operated Switch) keeps the microphone active at all times, allowing you to communicate without touching any buttons.


Is there any background noise?

Generally radios are equipped with either the press to talk function (PTT). If there will be a lot of background noise when using the radios, PTT would be a better option than VOX.


DO I NEED A LICENSED RADIO?


Consider number of channels you need

For the majority of activities, unlicensed radios are adequate; they offer sufficient channels and range.


Privacy codes

A licensed radio gives you a wider range of communication, more channels and provides the option of privacy codes.


Licenses are easy to get

Getting a license is a straightforward process. It costs only £75 for a five year period ; other radios can be added free of charge.


DO YOU NEED A WATERPROOF RADIO?

NEED A WATERPROOF TWO WAY RADIO?

How resistant does my radio need to be?

The first thing to check for when buying a waterproof radio is the IP rating.

Understanding IP ratings

With IP ratings, the first of the two digits refers to protection against solid objects; the second denotes protection against liquids. With this information, you should then be able to choose the device suitable for your needs. For more information, download our guide.

Do you require a robust device?

If planning to use the device in challenging conditions, you should consider products certified by US MIL STD 810 or ATEX testing - this ensures protection from extreme temperatures and dangerous substances. Click here for more information about ATEX radios.


WHAT ACCESSORIES ARE AVAILABLE?

Batteries and chargers

Batteries and chargers

All battery powered devices require a charger. Spare long-life batteries can come in handy in an emergency situation where a power supply is unavailable.

Hands free kits and headsets

Hands-free kits and headsets

Useful in the construction industry in particular, hands-free kits allow you to communicate while you work. Many radios on the market come with a G shaped earpiece; however, if working in security, a discreet earpiece may be more suitable.

Ear defenders

Ear defenders

Perfect for noisy environments, ear defenders generally cancel out any background noise to allow you to communicate clearly. They also protect your ears against irreversible damage as high noise levels in factories, airports and construction sites can cause hearing loss.

Speaker microphones

Speaker microphones

This is the ideal accessory for someone who has to communicate frequently. You can choose from noise-cancelling, submersible, compact, heavy-duty or simply a standard microphone depending on your needs.

Covers and cases

Covers and cases

Even with a high IP rating, a case gives your device increased protection.

Antennas, connection cables and belt clips

Antennas, connection cables and belt clips

If looking to increase the range of your two-way radio, independent antenna kits are available. Connection cables allow you to link your radio to a headset. Belt clips ensure you can carry your two-way radio with ease.

NEED EXPERT ADVICE?
Call us with your questions
0333 123 3050