Best Long Range Walkie Talkie

Are you searching for the best long range walkie talkie?

Not all two way radios are capable of handling long distance communication. The top long range models can go for miles while maintaining clear audio. I have reviewed the most popular models available on today’s market and after reading this article you will know my recommendations.

Check the quick list below for links to customer reviews and prices for my picks, or read on for the full review:

  1. Retevis RT1 High-Power Two Way Radios Long Range UHF 70CM 16CH VOX
  2. Retevis RT-5R 2 Way Radio 128CH FM UHF VHF Radio Dual Band Two-way Radio Rechargeable Long Range Walkie Talkies with Earpiece
  3. Midland – GXT1000VP4, 50 Channel GMRS Two-Way Radio – Up to 36 Mile Range Walkie Talkie
  4. Ansoko Long Range Walkie Talkie Rechargeable FRS/GMRS 16-Channel Handheld Two Way Radio with Earpiece
  5. Midland – LXT630VP3, 36 Channel FRS Two-Way Radio – Up to 30 Mile Range Walkie Talkie
  6. Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two Way Walkie Talkie
  7. Motorola T260TP Long Range Walkie Talkie Radio
  8. Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two Way Radio
  9. Retevis RT21 Long Range Walkie Talkie
  10. Retevis H-777 Long Range Walkie Talkie

A long-range two-way radio, also known as a walkie-talkie, is a great way of maintaining contact with the rest of the crew across extensive distances. These small handheld units hold a significant level of importance as they’re the same devices used by rescue teams and emergency responders as a means of communication during their missions.

Features to Look for in a Long Range Walkie Talkie

Effective Range

The distance in which a long-range two-way radio can operate in will vary depending on whether you’re in a densely populated area or not. This is mainly because the effective range of such devices is susceptible to interferences by other overlapping frequencies or physical obstructions. 

Most manufacturers advertise their products as being able to cover ranges that reach up to 20 miles or more, which is only applicable in ideal situations where there are no interferences whatsoever. Realistically speaking, you should be expecting long-range walkie-talkies to have a maximum operating range that’s around 4 miles.

Power Output

The power output, also known as the wattage output, is the amount of power that the radio is capable of putting out. The more the power output is, the more range you’ll get, and vice versa. Larger walkie talkies usually have a power output that’s around 4 to 5 Watts, while smaller models tend to have a power output of 2 to 3 Watts.

Display Option

Screen display is a time-saving feature that allows you to keep track of your radio’s settings while being able to toggle it without having to reprogram your device with every minor change. It also keeps you aware of the batteries life and which channel your radio is on. Digital radios have also included additional features like private calling and texting.

Battery Life

Stable battery life is a crucial component in a walkie-talkie, after all, you don’t your battery dying out on you during an emergency. You want to check if the battery is able to last a sufficient amount of time without needing to be charged. You also want to keep an eye out for models that offer a power saving mode, which will help you get the most out of the battery.

Design

Walkie-talkies that have longer antennas will have better reception than models with shorter ones. Also, if you intend on using your device in an area that’s known for heavy rain or in the ocean, then you might want to consider buying a walkie-talkie that has a waterproof design. You also want to make sure that you get a lightweight walkie-talkie that won’t weigh you down.

Out-of-Range Alert

This feature basically lets you know whether your device is in or out of range without you having to fiddle with it. The way this takes place is through your radio transmitting a code to the other device, if the other device communicates back, then that means that your radio is in range.

Other alerts you might want to consider are the weather and call alerts. Weather alerts scan nearby channels and notify you about the current weather condition in your area. Call alerts grant you the ability to pick specific tones when receiving calls from your group, which usually includes the option to pick a vibrating tone as well.

Channels & Frequencies

Basic walkie-talkies usually feature 2 or 4 channels, while high-end models can offer up to 22 channels. Typical models tend to use a single frequency for their operation to ensure smoothness. However, a unit that features a single frequency is most likely to have poor reception. For that reason, it’s always preferred to choose a two-way radio that features a variety of frequencies and channels.

VHF & UHF

Radios that use VHF technology are able to communicate with radios that use UHF technology, but you need to know that the opposite is not true, which is why you need to make sure that your units are compatible with each other in terms of frequency. VHF technology is favored because it’s operational distance and signal are both a lot greater than UHF radios. Low-band VHF radios tend to have a frequency range of 49 to 108 MHz, while high-band models tend to have a frequency range of 169 to 216 MHz.

10 Best Long Range Walkie Talkies

Retevis RT1 High-Power Two Way Radios Long Range UHF 70CM 16CH VOX

The Retevis RT1 provides a sturdy design that provides an accurate 4-mile range even in heavily populated regions and wooded areas, which is pretty impressive compared to bold claims from other manufacturers. The 3000 mAh battery supports around 260 hours of standby use and the high/low power output ensures a very stable signal.

The VOX feature grants you the convenience of using hands-free operations. The scramble function, coupled with the non-standard analog tone, provides privacy and security throughout the call. Another cool feature is the squelch adjustment, which helps filter out excessive noise and improves the call quality. On the flipside, despite the rugged design, this unit isn’t waterproof. Also, this radio comes at a pretty steep price tag.

Pros

  • Impressive communication range of 4 miles
  • Great call quality with no background noise
  • VOX feature allows hands-free operation

Cons

  • Steep price tag
  • The design isn’t waterproof

Retevis Dual Band Two-way Radio Rechargeable Long Range Walkie Talkies

The RT-5R is a dual-band radio that functions on both UHF and VHF technology at a selectable high/low power output to suit your needs. The battery capacity is 1400 mAh, which is pretty average compared to other units on this list, but it’s enough to support your day working. The shining feature in this device has to be the crystal clear earpiece that allows for great hands-free operation when coupled with the VOX function.

The manual keypad set allows for easy adjustment even when you’re not familiar with the settings. This radio offers 128 channels for your convenience and the squelch function helps you filter out background noises and enhance the signal sensitivity. The problem with this radio is the not-so-durable belt clips, which seems to be a recurring theme with pretty much all Retevis radios. Also, the software is a little too simple and assumes too much knowledge in the buyer.

Pros

  • Earpiece provides high-quality audio
  • Compatible with UHF and VHF technologies
  • Offers 128 channels for multiple calls

Cons

  • Belt clips aren’t long lasting
  • Software is oversimplified
  • Not waterproof

Midland GMRS Walkie Talkie

The GXT1000VP4 from Midland features 50 GMRS channels and a scanning channel to check for nearby activities. The manufacturer claims that the unit has a substantial 36-mile range in ideal situations, which practically boils down to 1.5 to 2 miles of effective range. Additionally, the unit features 142 privacy codes that provide up to 3124 channel options to help you filter out other conversations.

The waterproof design of this walkie-talkie makes it an ideal choice for those who live in areas known for heavy rain. Moreover, the weather scan function tunes into available channels to alert you of the weather condition in your area. Like other models on this list, this radio also features a VOX function for your hands-free convenience. A few setbacks that this unit seems to suffer from are the mediocre battery life and the fairly noisy receiver.

Pros

  • Waterproof design ideal for rainy regions
  • 142 privacy codes for increased security
  • Weather scan and alert functions

Cons

  • Battery life isn’t suitable for long trips
  • The receiver is noisy and range limiting

Ansoko Long Range Walkie Talkie

This UHF long-range radio from Ansoko features a solid effective range of 3 miles at a frequency range of 400 to 470 MHz. The range varies in different working conditions, of course. The 1500mAh battery is by far the best thing about this device. While average in terms of capacity, the battery supports 8 to 12 hours of continual use. Also, the time taken to fully charge the battery is 4 to 5 hours.

As far as the design goes, it’s pretty sturdy and light in terms of weight. This walkie-talkie is also accompanied by an earpiece that provides decent audio quality. Further, the Ansoko radio features VOX functionality, LED flashlight, and an emergency alarm. However, like a lot of other radios, the belt clips are pretty flimsy and could break easily. Also, the audio quality is mediocre and can use some improvements.

Pros

  • Great battery life with short charging time
  • Comes with a decent-quality earpiece
  • LED flashlight and emergency alarm

Cons

  • Belt clips can break easily
  • Mediocre audio quality

Midland FRS Two Way Radio Walkie Talkie

The LXT630VP3 unit from Midland is a waterproof radio that’s compatible with FRS and GMRS radios of the same channel/frequency. This walkie-talkie features 121 privacy codes, a 3-level VOX function, and 36 scannable channels. And again, the whole 36-mile range is really just an effective range of 1.5 to 2 miles.

The dual power option grants you the ability to use the included rechargeable battery packs or 3 AAA alkaline batteries (not included). The battery life is pretty poor and it takes around 12 hours to charge it, which is a little too long compared to other models. Also, while the audio quality is pretty good, there’s a little delay on intercept.

Pros

  • Very clear voice reception
  • 121 privacy codes
  • Compatible with FRS and GMRS radios
  • Waterproof design

Cons

  • Mediocre battery life with long charging time
  • Prominent delay on the intercept

Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two Way Walkie Talkie

Arcshell Long Range Walkie Talkie two way radio with earpiece

This is a great small sized walkie talkie that can reach long range with the right terrain. It measures approximately 4.5″ x 1.3″ x 2.3″ without the antenna. It comes with a removable belt clip and an earpiece. It utilizes a frequency range of 400-470MHz. Mine came with 16 pre-programmed channels and had a simple rotary channel selector. This radio comes with a rechargeable Li-ion battery and a charging dock. These radios charge quickly and depending on usage, will work for 8-96 hours according to the manufacturer. When tested I got a little over 38 hours of use on a single charge. Reception range is up to five miles in clear areas and diminishes with more cover and buildings in the way. These would work great on a jobsite or with a family needing to keep in touch out camping or hiking.

Pros

  • Long battery life
  • Up to 5 mile range
  • Simple controls
  • Comes with earpiece and charging dock

Cons

  • Range diminishes in cover and congested areas

Motorola T260TP Long Range Walkie Talkie Radio

This is an excellent two way walkie talkie perfect for emergency situations, work, and family trips. It can be powered with the included rechargeable NiMH battery or with three AA batteries. The battery life is very good so you know it’s working when you need it. You can receive the 11 weather channels and receive weather alerts from NOAA. It has a scan feature along with a low battery indicator. Comes with 22 channels and 121 privacy codes. This walkie talkie can communicate with any FRS/GMRS radio when on the same channel and privacy code. This is an exceptional long range two way radio.

Pros

  • Picks up 11 weather channels
  • Receive NOAA emergency alerts
  • Long range
  • Communicate with other walkie talkie brands on the same channel and privacy codes
  • Excellent value

Cons

  • Can be pricey if many radios are needed

Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two Way Radio

This model from Arcshell is very similar to the other on the list. It is compact and boasts up to five miles in reception range. It does lose some range when in tree cover or among other obstacles. The rechargeable battery has a good life that will last you up to a couple days of moderate use. This walkie talkie comes with a charging dock and an earpiece. It is a good performing simple design that is a good value for home and work use.

Pros

  • Rechargeable battery with long life
  • Simple design
  • Comes with charging dock and earpiece
  • Good value

Cons

  • Loses range in heavy cover

Retevis RT21 Long Range Walkie Talkie

This is another high performing long range walkie talkie from Retevis. This is tough and well constructed walkie talkie that can stand up to extended use making it great for work. This two way radio has excellent reception and performs well even with obstructions. The sound level goes high and it comes with a quality earpiece. It can be set to private mode to keep conversations just between you and the intended receiver. Comes with a belt clip and a hand strap making it easy to keep this radio handy. It is also backed with a two year warranty. This is one of the best options for those who need a high performing radio that can stand up to abuse.

Pros

  • Durable
  • Long range even in cover
  • Includes a quality earpiece
  • 2 year warranty

Cons

  • Premium price

Retevis H-777 Long Range Walkie Talkie

This is a great long range walkie talkie at a lower price point. The rechargeable battery will last a day or two with moderate use. It has a USB charger making it a great option for having in the vehicle. It has an up to three mile range and performed adequately with obstructions. The sound was not as good as the premium model but was loud enough under all but the loudest surroundings. The six pack is an excellent value and will suit business and home use.

Pros

  • 2 year warranty
  • 3 mile range
  • Long battery life
  • Good value

Cons

  • Not as loud as the premium model
  • Reception not as good in heavy cover

For more guides and tips read these articles:


Despite the steep price tag, it’s quite clear that the Retevis RT1 is the clear winner in terms of range and battery life. The only downside to this device is that it’s not suitable for rainy areas. If you’re in need of a walkie-talkie that can hold its own in the rain and you don’t mind compromising on battery life, the Midland GXT1000VP4 should do the job just fine. Which one of these 5 products do you think is the best?

Here is the quick list with my picks for the best long range walkie talkie. For price and customer reviews check the links.

  1. Retevis RT1 High-Power Two Way Radios Long Range UHF 70CM 16CH VOX
  2. Retevis RT-5R 2 Way Radio 128CH FM UHF VHF Radio Dual Band Two-way Radio Rechargeable Long Range Walkie Talkies with Earpiece
  3. Midland – GXT1000VP4, 50 Channel GMRS Two-Way Radio – Up to 36 Mile Range Walkie Talkie
  4. Ansoko Long Range Walkie Talkie Rechargeable FRS/GMRS 16-Channel Handheld Two Way Radio with Earpiece
  5. Midland – LXT630VP3, 36 Channel FRS Two-Way Radio – Up to 30 Mile Range Walkie Talkie
  6. Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two Way Walkie Talkie
  7. Motorola T260TP Long Range Walkie Talkie Radio
  8. Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two Way Radio
  9. Retevis RT21 Long Range Walkie Talkie
  10. Retevis H-777 Long Range Walkie Talkie
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