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Getting a "Walkie-Talkie" for FRS Use

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techguru

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Hello! I don't know if this is the right topic to put this in, but here we go anyway.
I am looking basically for a walkie-talkie. I want something that won't require a license to use and won't be illegal to use. Not anything too expensive (under $100) and comes with 3-4 units that can communicate with each other at once. I don't need anything with a huge range, but just something that covers less than 5 miles. I would use it in a wooded area mostly (I live in MA in the middle of the woods lol). I just need some suggestions from all of you guys on recommended walkies that would fit my criteria.

Thanks! -Vincent
Ok, to be 100% legal what you're asking is not possible unless you win the lotto by finding a set of MURS radios at a failed business liquidation auction.

This is because your options are only UHF FRS which is only 500mw (half a watt) and VHF-HI MURS at 2-watts and HF AM CB at 4-watts.

The FRS option meets your price needs but not your distance needs.

The MURS option meets your distance needs but not your price needs.

The CB option is a gamble.

If going with the FRS option I would get these: Two 16 Mile/22 Channel FRS/GMRS Radios with AC Adapter - Two-Way Radios at Uniden Simple and rechargeable and no tempting illegal wattage available, just don't use channels 15-22.

If going with MURS I would get these Motorola RMM2050 On-Site 2-Way Radio (Single) RMM2050 B&H Photo Wonderful build quality, MIL spec.

CB might be a good balance between price and range depending on pirates and interference in your area.

PRO401HH Handheld CB Radio - CB Radios at Uniden
 
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techguru

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In my experience it is quite the opposite. I have several GMRS radios. I have some motorola talkabouts, and use an ICOM HT as a "base station" (10 dbd tower mounted antenna). They all work fine.

On the other hand, I also have 4 Boefengs. The transmit audio is extremely low. This is a known problem. Some work, some don't. In order to get usable transmit deviation on GMRS or FRS (which is NFM) I have to put it in WFM mode to have the audio sound like the cheap motorola talkabouts. On 2 meters, in WFM mode, all 4 radios are pretty much useless. Everyone tells me my audio is so low that they cant hear me.

I have tried the "open the microphone hole" trick... it did very little.

The factory is unresponsive.

The dealer ( 409 shop) basically said "what do you expect for $40 bucks?".

I know that some of them work OK, and some of them don't. It is a crapshoot.

Rick
UV-5R is soooooo last year. UV-82 is the current model and is supposed to be 100% better than the UV-5R.

Amazon.com : BaoFeng UV-82 (USA Warranty) Dual-Band 136-174/400-520 MHz FM Ham Two-way Radio, Transceiver, HT - With Battery, Earpiece, Antenna, Charger, and More : GPS & Navigation
 

EmilyWolf

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Sorry, I was under the impression that VHF was better in wooded area and UHF was better in an urban area....
Oh no I was referring to MURS devices. They tend to do the same as FRS. And 70cm goes through wood better. Unless the trees are low vegetation absorbtion wouldn't be a problem.
 
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KF5YDR

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No its not and murs is out of this guys budget and bad. Tech license for vhf is better
I see a lot of misinfo and FUD back and forth on whether VHF or UHF is better in the sticks.

It is a matter of physics that lower frequencies work better through foliage and trees and in uneven terrain. UHF is exclusively line-of-sight and is readily absorbed by living things.

Getting a ham license may be exactly what OP needs, if he wants to keep it 100% legal. That, however, has the disadvantage that everyone he needs to talk to needs to get licensed as well. I don't know if that's viable.
 

KF5YDR

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Particularly, 440 is the beginning of the part of the EM spectrum where transmissions won't go through wood (or leaves, or people, or cows) worth a durn. When you get to about 700 MHz, you can step behind a bush and lose 3 dB. Around 1 GHz, heavy rainstorms start to become RF opaque. That's how weather radar works.
 

gewecke

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Oh no I was referring to MURS devices. They tend to do the same as FRS. And 70cm goes through wood better. Unless the trees are low vegetation absorbtion wouldn't be a problem.
I think you may have some research to do, no offense intended. :)

Frs is on UHF, and uhf is not recommended for simplex in wooded terrain.

VHF would be your best option, and for the op as well.

73,
n9zas
 
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