Are you looking for the best two-way radios? Here are the 10 best 2-way radios to buy in 2020. The Keen Hunter has picked the best of the best two radios from the market for you.

We, at The Keen Hunter, have spent around 46 hours on research and testings to finally come up with these 10 best two-way radios 2020.

Rest assured that you will be buying only the best long-range 2-way radios / long-range walkie talkies today with us. Before we proceed to the list, let’s fisrt get quick introduction to the two-way radios and their purposes.

Best Two-Way Radio

An Introduction To Two-Way Radios 2020 | What Are 2-Way Radios?

What Are 2-Way Radios

You don’t need to be a hunter or hiker to make use of a 2-way radio. One can use two-way radios for camping or a family trip to a theme park. Low cellular network can be a dangerous situation when you’re lost and need help. 2-way radios don’t require a tower to operate, it can operate on its own, within a reasonable distance. 2-way radios also have emergency features that can come in handy. It can also be used at home to play around with your friends and family.

Never bought any two-way radios before?

Don’t worry: The Keen Hunter is here to help you. We have added the best two-way radios buying guide at the bottom of the best two-way radios reviews section. So, just read that best two-way radios buying guide, and you will get enough information and details to pick the best from below two-way radios reviews list.

So, that’s all with the jargons. Let’s now get started with top 10 best two-way radios buying reviews and buying guide 2020.

Best Inexpensive

Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two-Way Radios with Earpiece 6 Pack UHF 400-470Mhz Walkie Talkies Li-ion Battery and Charger Included

The Best High-End

BaoFeng BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) 8-Watt Dual Band Two-Way Radio (136-174MHz VHF & 400-520MHz UHF) Includes Full Kit with Large Battery

Best Mid-Range

Midland - GXT1000VP4, 50 Channel GMRS Two-Way Radio - Up to 36 Mile Range Walkie Talkie, 142 Privacy Codes, Waterproof, NOAA Weather Scan + Alert (Pair Pack) (Black/Silver)

Top 10 Best Two-Way Radios Reviews (Tested) And Buying Guide 2020

Retevis RT22 Two Way Radios Rechargeable Walkie Talkies 16 CH VOX Channel Lock Emergency Alarm 2 Way Radio(10 Pack)

#10. Retevis RT22 Two Way Radios

Looking for long-range walkie talkies? This one which is among long-range two-way radios is made for you. The Retevis RT22 Two Way Radios is a fantastic walkie talkie which is FCC certified. It is a pocket-sized mini-system with a short antenna that can go pretty much anywhere undetected.

The slim look makes it more desirable for commercial use. Despite the short antenna, it has an extended range and comes with a built-in FM function.

It also comes with 16 preset channels with privacy codes which reduces third party interference, thus leading to a lot fewer confusions.

PRICE: $            Editor Rating 3.8/5.0             Fakespot Grade:  (what’s it)

  • USB charging, allowing the unit to be charged anywhere

  • VOX hand free and emergency alarm feature

  • Quick scanning

  • License-free, so you can use the frequency legally without purchasing

  • The headsets have been found to cause problems in many cases

  • Durability and longevity issues

  • Fragile belt clips

Radioddity GA-2S Long Range Walkie Talkies UHF Two Way Radio Rechargeable with Micro USB Charging + USB Desktop Charger + Air Acoustic Earpiece with Mic, 2 Pack

#9. Radioddity GA-2S Long Range Walkie Talkies Two Way Radio

Radioddity GA-2S Long Range Walkie Talkies Two Way Radio is another cost-effective walkie talkie which has been ergonomically designed for applications in security teams, construction teams, warehouse, hotels, etc.

It contains a 1500 mAh battery which provides an incredible 96 hr of standby time on a single charge. Charging can be done via a micro USB cable. It is pre-programmed, so no need for manual setup.

Radioddity GA-2S Long Range Walkie Talkies Two Way Radio can reach up to 3 miles and is CHIRP supported, allowing programming by a PC with a programming cable. All in all, it’s among the best two-way radios options 2020 that you can buy.

PRICE: $     Editor Rating: 3.7/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • Pre programming makes it easy to use

  • Good battery life

  • Reprogrammable via PC

  • Decent range and long standby time

  • No battery indicator

  • Long charging time

  • Substandard earpiece

BaoFeng UV-5R UHF VHF Dual Band Two Way Radio Walkie Talkie with 5 Earpieces + 1 Programming Cable, 5 Pack

#8. BaoFeng UV-5R UHF VHF Dual Band Two Way Radio

The BaoFeng UV-5R UHF VHF Dual Band Two Way Radio is a clear winner among amateur radio operators. If you are looking for the long-range walkie talkies, this one could be a great option. Though it has been discontinued, it continues to be sold at Amazon at incredibly low rates, which makes it all the more desirable.

It contains a battery of 1800 mAh and provides a frequency range of 400-480 MHz. The signal reception is made better by a 7-inch antenna, which also allows the inbuilt FM radio function for all those times when you might be out and bored.

Also, it comes with a programming cable and supports CHIRP. The UV-5R is excellent to have with you when you are out trekking or other scenarios in the wild or remote places, where the cellular network might be inferior. Overall, it’s among the best long-range two-way radios 2020 that you can buy.

PRICE: $$     Editor Rating: 4.0/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • Lightweight and compact

  • Clear reception from NOAA

  • Reasonable cost

  • FM function and good for long-ranges

  • Not as good as police scanners in some instances

  • Slow scanning

  • No voice prompts or PPT lockout functions

Retevis RT21 Two Way Radio Rechargeable 2 Way Radios UHF FRS VOX Emergency Security Long Range Walkie Talkies with Secret Service Earpiece (10 Pack)

#7. Retevis RT21 Two Way Radio

The Retevis RT21 Two Way Radio is the perfect walkie talkie for people who are sick of poor battery performance of their devices. One of the unique features of the RT21 is its power-saving mode, which automatically switches off the device after it has been left unused for a few minutes.

It is excellent for construction sites and warehouses. It includes a discreet earpiece along with a private code function to keep your conversations from being intercepted. Though it might not be the best in business for outdoor purposes, where the signal quality degrades over longer distances.

The RT21 offers 1m of fall protection, as it has been designed, keeping in mind the usage at construction sites. The unit comes with a low battery indicator and can also respond to voice commands via the Retevis software. Overall, if you want to buy the best 2-way radios 2020, Retevis RT21 Two Way Radio could be a great option for you.

PRICE: $$     Editor Rating: 4.1/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • Long battery life, allowing uninterrupted communication

  • Small, discreet earpiece ensures privacy

  • Emergency alarm and voice activation in both English and Chinese

  • Durable, and provides clear indoor communication

  • The surrounding environment highly hampers the outdoor operation

  • Weak belt hooks might break if overused

  • No micro USB support so can only be charged via charging docks

Ansoko Long Range Walkie Talkie Rechargable FRS/GMRS 16-Channel Handheld Two Way Radio with Earpiece (6 Pack)

#6. Ansoko Long Range Walkie Talkie Two Way Radio

If you are looking for long range 2-way radio which can have a range of 3 miles, Ansoko Long Range Walkie Talkie Two Way Radio should be the one on your radar. Known for providing consumer electronics and home improvement products, the Ansoko UHF long-range, sturdy and lightweight walkie talkie which is accompanied by an earpiece of good enough audio quality.

Just like the Arcshell, it has a range of 400-470 MHz. It comes with a battery pack of 1500 mAh which is perhaps the best thing about this device, as it can support 8-12 hours of continuous use after being charged for 4 to 5 hours.

The Ansoko comes with VOX, and a built-in LED flashlight and SOS support. It is mainly intended for short-distance communication. Overall, if you here to buy the best buy two-way radios 2020, you can consider Ansoko Long Range Walkie Talkie Two Way Radio as a value for money option.

PRICE: $     Editor Rating: 4.2/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • Amazing battery performance

  • Emergency alarm support

  • Classic black finish, making it look more professional

  • Decent quality earpiece

  • Not waterproof

  • Audio quality is pretty sub-standard

  • Fragile belt clips

Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two-Way Radios with Earpiece 4 Pack UHF 400-470Mhz Walkie Talkies Li-ion Battery and Charger Included

#5. Arcshell Rechargeable AR – 6 Two-Way Radios

Another small and lightweight two-way radio coming from Arcshell, the AR-6 is a simple device with a convenient user interface with minimum switches and add ons to make the radio more comfortable to use.

It comes with 16 pre-programmed channels and a mechanical rotary switch channel selector. Arcshell Rechargeable AR – 6 Two-Way Radios carries a similar battery and range as the AR-5. It has a built-in high-quality speaker to provide crystal clear sound even in noisy places. It can also serve as a speaker system if you lay the radios in various parts of the house.

The range is very terrain dependent, but it has been found to touch the 1.2 miles mark reasonably easily. Battery life is dependent on the frequency of transmission and can range anywhere between 8 to 96 hours. All in all, Arcshell Rechargeable AR – 6 Two-Way Radios is another best buy two way radios in 2020 on our list that we suggest you buy!

PRICE: $     Editor Rating: 4.2/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • Lightweight and compact

  • Durable with a decent battery life

  • Cost-effective

  • The decent range for everyday purposes

  • No screen to show channel/volume

  • Not compatible with other walkies

  • The headsets are not of excellent quality

Motorola T260TP Talkabout Radio, 3 Pack

#4. Motorola T260TP Talkabout Radio

With hands-free feature, it’s another option among long-range two-way radios or long-range walkie talkies which allows you to use the radio as a speakerphone and an impressive range of up to 25 miles, the Motorola T260TP Talkabout Radio is an amazing entry-level 2-way radio. It can keep you updated with the weather conditions via one of its 11 weather channels.

Its scanning feature allows you to scan the channels currently in use. With 22 channels and 121 privacy codes, which account for 2662 combinations, finding channels has never been easier.

The T260TP uses NiMH batteries which can provide juice for about 10 hours. Additionally, 3 AA batteries can be used for up to 29 hours. It is compatible with other FRS/GMRS radios, irrespective of the brand. In addition to these, a keypad lock provides privacy and prevents user settings from being tampered with. Overall, Motorola T260TP Talkabout Radio is another best two-way radio walkie talkie 2020 to buy without overthinking about anything.

PRICE: $$      Editor Rating: 4.4/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • Provides two-way power, NiMH rechargeable battery, and 3 AA batteries

  • Easy charging with micro USB port

  • Compatibility with its counterparts

  • Weather channels and alert system

  • Not waterproof

  • Poor rechargeable battery life

  • No battery life indicator and charging issues

Arcshell Rechargeable Long Range Two-Way Radios with Earpiece 6 Pack UHF 400-470Mhz Walkie Talkies Li-ion Battery and Charger Included

#3. Arcshell Rechargeable AR-5 Two-Way Radios

The Arcshell Rechargeable AR-5 Two-Way Radios are one of the best handheld two-way radios for extensive group communication. Coming with a sturdy build and lightweight, these might not be the prettiest of the lot, but they do back enough power to boast of a 5-mile radius, which is terrain dependent.

It has a frequency range of UHF 400-470mHz and comes with 16 memory channels. Custom channels can be set up within this frequency band too. The Arcshell is 4.3 inches, small enough to fit in hand quickly. It’s among the best handheld two-way radios 2020 to buy.

With a 1500 mAh Li-ion battery which can provide a maximum output of 3 watts, it can provide at least 8 hrs of juice on a 2.5 hr charge. It has a loud enough speaker for noisy environments, and voice activation removes the need for a push-to-talk button. All in all, Arcshell Rechargeable AR-5 Two-Way Radios are another best option among the best two-way radio walkie talkie 2020 to go with.

PRICE: $     Editor Rating: 4.5/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • Cheap but functional design

  • Crisp and clear audio, despite the surrounding interference

  • Great value for the price

  • Lightweight and easy to handle

  • Shorter battery life and takes more time to charge

  • Complicated attachments

  • Lesser power and reduced range as compared to others

BaoFeng BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) 8-Watt Dual Band Two-Way Radio (136-174MHz VHF & 400-520MHz UHF) Includes Full Kit with Large Battery

#2. BaoFeng BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) Two-Way Radio

If you are on the lookout for a simple radio at an affordable price, BaoFeng BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) Two-Way Radio is the one you should go for. Coming from one of the bestselling brands on Amazon, the BF-F8HP is a dual-band walkie talkie radio which is next in the line of UV-5R series.

An upgrade from the 2nd gen, it has a 2000mAh battery which doubles the output power to 8 watts, compared 4 watts of the 2nd generation counterpart. Designed in the USA and loaded with various power settings, it comes with a frequency range of 65 -108MHz. It also has options for broadband and narrowband.

The best part about this is that it is completely compatible with the 2nd gen UV-5R, so there is no need to replace the entire set. Even the antennas can be switched for better overall performance. It also comes with exclusive concierge help and warranty support, making it a better deal than the previous models. Overall, BaoFeng BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) Two-Way Radio is among the best two-way radio walkie talkie that you will not regret buying. Just go it.

PRICE: $$$     Editor Rating: 4.7/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • 30% larger battery

  • Simple documentation and improved concierge support

  • High gain V-85 antenna for enhanced performance

  • Fully compatible with the UV-5R series

  • Twice more costly than any other BaoFeng

  • Annoying firmware bugs which might pop up sometimes

  • Reduced battery life due to more massive power output

Midland - GXT1000VP4, 50 Channel GMRS Two-Way Radio - Up to 36 Mile Range Walkie Talkie, 142 Privacy Codes, Waterproof, NOAA Weather Scan + Alert (Pair Pack) (Black/Silver)

#1. Midland – GXT1000VP4, 50 Channel Two-Way Radio

The Midland GXT – 1000VP4 walkie talkie is a two-way radio featuring 22 GMRS channels plus 28 extra pre-programmed privacy channels with an easy access button. It features a backlit LCD screen which makes it easier to see in the dark.

Since it is mainly designed for emergencies, it is tough, waterproof and can send alert notifications about severe weather conditions. The Midland comes with rechargeable battery packs which can keep them operating for hours at a stretch.

It also comes with USB support and whisper mode for communicating in quiet and secretive environments. Overall, when it comes to buying the best of the best long-range walkie talkies or best two-way radios, you will not find any better option than Midland – GXT1000VP4, 50 Channel Two-Way Radio.

PRICE: $$     Editor Rating: 4.9/5.0      Fakespot Grade: 

  • The privacy codes offer up to 3124 channels options

  • SOS siren alerts and locator signals for emergencies

  • NOAA weather scan

  • Impressive range and affordable price

  • A complex menu, making it hard for beginners

  • Reception gets fuzzy at the 36-mile range

Two Way Radios Buying Guide 2020

Two Way Radios Buying Guide 2020

Purchasing a 2-way radio that fits your needs is crucial. And choosing from a variety of radios might seem tedious. Buying the no. 1 item that is in every Top 10 list might seem like a wise idea, could you be anymore wrong. Usually, a Top product is mid-range with decent features. So, when you need a 2-way radio for a certain job, the Top one might not always solve your problem.

All that out of the way, allow us to help you in picking the one that will best suit your needs. Here a few facts and features that you should consider when buying the best two-way radios 2020.

Durability Of Two-Way Radios

durable two-way radios

A 2-Way Bluetooth radio is commonly used for outdoor activities, which requires that it withstand fluctuating temperatures, water, and moderate impact.

So, here are a few things you might want to consider while purchasing a durable 2-way radio.

  • Waterproofing:

Predicting the weather might not fit everyone’s laundry basket. That’s why being prepared for the battle against Mother Nature will go a long way. A 2-Way radio needs to be Waterproof, Weatherproof, and Dust resistant to help against unforeseen calamities.

– Splash Proof radios can withstand a few sprinkles of water, but will not endure if dropped or exposed to water for a long time. Not suitable for frequent outdoor use.

– Waterproof/Dust-resistance is an essential feature to have on a 2-way radio. Mid-range radios have an IP rating of 67, which means it can survive for 30 minutes in 1-meter deep water and is fully dust-resistant.

  • Weatherproof:

If you live in a place with extreme weather, you might want to look for a radio that can withstand that type of weather. Weatherproofed 2-way radios can work in extreme cold and protect itself from humidity.

  • Impact Resistance :

If you are a rough user or want extra protection for your radio, you might want to check the durability on the specification. An impact-resistance does not come in affordable 2-way Radios. But if you’re willing to pay the extra cash, you’ll get yourself a long-lasting 2-way radio. For average daily use, you might not need heavy-duty radios. It just makes it more difficult to carry it around.

Mass & Measurement Of Handheld Two-Way Radios

Mass & Measurement Of Handheld Two-Way Radios

2-way Radios come in distinct shapes and sizes. Most overweight 2-way radios come with additional features. Additional features might include impact resistance, extreme indoor range, and extra UHF frequencies.

These radios are useful while in a dense forest or a multiple story building (such as hotels).

If you’re looking to use it for hunting or scouting, a mid-range radio is satisfactory. These radios are compact, have basic durability features, cover a reasonable range, and are affordable.

Channels & Privacy Codes Of Two-Way Radios

Channels & Privacy Codes Of Two-Way Radios

Radios transmit the communication using different frequencies known as channels.

To keep the channels private, they use privacy codes. When you use privacy codes, only the radio that uses that particular code will get your message.

This feature is useful when you are in a crowded area with too much activity.

Channels Of Two Way Radios

There are 22 common channels on standard radios. There are two different services, namely Family Radio Service (FRS) and General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS). Most 2-way radios have access to 7 FRS, 8 GMRS, and 7 FRS/GMRS channels. You may require a license to operate in GMRS channels, depending on the country’s regulations.

Privacy Codes:

Some 2-way radios have more than 120 privacy codes, which can make up to 2500 possible combinations. These codes don’t make your communication private. Still, it will make it unique, so only the radios with your combinations can listen to you.

Call Mode:

With the call mode, you can transmit a message to a single radio without anyone else listening to it even if they are on the same channel.

Emergency Features To Look For In Best Two-Way Radios

Emergency Features To Look For In Best Two-Way Radios

One of the helpful features to have in a hiking or hunting equipment is the Emergency features. A few of the Emergency features almost all 2-way radios have are Panic Button, Lone Worker, Man Down, and flashlight.

Panic Button:

When you are in danger, a panic button can save your life. It sends out a signal to all nearby devices and an alarm to the base station. And if a nearby device has a display, they can see your location.

Lone worker:

The lone worker feature allows you to set a timer on the radio. Within the given time you need to reset the timer, if you don’t, you’ll receive a warning, and if still there is no response, an alarm is triggered. It gets louder by the minute if no one responds.

Man Down:

This feature is similar to Lone Worker, except this takes in the angle and movement of the radio. If the radio is slant, you’ll be informed to set it straight, and failing to do so will set off the alarm. Also, if it is falling at a rapid rate, it will trigger the alarm.

Flashlight:

Having a flashlight on a 2-way radio is a boon. It’ll help you at night or while travelling through a dark tunnel. But the flashlight drains the battery if not used wisely.

The Long-Range Two-Way Radios | Long-Range Walkie Talkies

The Long-Range Two-Way Radios | Long-Range Walkie Talkies

The range is usually what most people look at while buying a 2-way radio. The average range of FRS is 6 miles, and GMRS is 50 miles in a clear line of sight.

Keep in mind that the range mentioned in the specification only works if there are no obstacles in the way, hence the “clear line of sight.”

When there is no clear line of sight, FRS radios can only transmit up to 0.6 miles, and GMRS can transmit up to 10-15 Miles. The usual complaints people have are about the range not being accurate.

And that’s because the actual range was calculated in an open field with no obstacles. You only get about half of the actual range when there are obstacles.

So, always calculate the range accordingly. Don’t blindly trust everything written in the package. We have listed several long-range walkie talkies / long-range two-way radios in our best 2-way radios reviews 2020 list. So, go through the list to pick long-range walkie talkies for your purposes. 

VOX Support In Two-Way Radios

VOX Support In Two-Way Radios

Voice Activated Transmit (VOX) is one of the essential functionalities you can have in a 2-way radio. It allows you to transmit communication without pressing the button. It has a smart sensor that automatically starts when you speak.

This feature can come in handy when you’re climbing or riding a bicycle. Attaching a high-quality headset with a mic can make it more efficient.

Most mid-range radios have a VOX feature. But always keep an eye on the specification cause most low range light-weight radios cut-off this functionality.

VOX used with Bluetooth headset can also come in handy. You can cut all the wire space and make it truly a hands-free 2-way radio.

Power Source Of Two-Way Radios

Power Source Of Two-Way Radios

Power is the primary feature to consider while purchasing any electronic device, and a 2-way radio is no exception. 2-Way radios use a NiMH or NiCd batteries.

NiMH Battery:

Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) batteries are much preferred than others. The operating temperature of the NiMH is 100 °C, which far exceeds the standard of other batteries. These batteries can work at the extreme cold of up to -30 °C, and blazing heat of 75 °C. It has a High Energy density, which makes it much lighter than the competition. It also has No Memory Effect. Memory Effect occurs when you cannot use the full potential of the battery. NiMH batteries last longer than NiCd batteries, considering the Memory Effect.

NiCd Batteries:

Nickel Cadmium (NiCd) batteries have a Memory Effect after multiple uses. Cadmium is also a highly toxic heavy metal, not suitable for the environment. NiCd batteries are often used for a cordless screwdriver, which requires high torque power. For a 2-way radio, a NiMH provides sufficient and efficient battery power.

  • Alcaline/Li-ion supported radios.

Weather Alerts Function In Two-Way Radios

Weather Alerts Function In Two-Way Radios

As mentioned earlier, not everyone is capable of predicting the weather. So, having a weather alert on your radio can help you in being prepared.

NOAA Scanner:

NOAA channels transmit alerts about the weather whenever necessary. And having a radio that can receive those channels is crucial. A 2-way radio with an NOAA Channel Scanner will alert of any hazardous weather in your area.

Weather channel:

Few radios can tune in to the weather channels to get every second report of the weather. If you want to know the weather while in the fields, you can tune in to channels.

Bluetooth Compatibility| Bluetooth Two-Way Radio

Bluetooth Two-Way Radio

If you’re tired of getting tangled in earphone wires, you can get a Bluetooth two-way radio. Connect your Bluetooth headphones, and you’re good to go. Having Bluetooth two-way radio is useful for bike riders and hunters, where you need your hands to be free.

But it also has its drawbacks. Bluetooth headphones usually have a battery that can only go up to 6-7 hours. So, you might want to bring a power bank while on a long trip for your Bluetooth two-way radio.

That’s all. Hope this guide has helped you in buying the best two-way radio for your purposes from the above best two-way radios list 2020. That’s all for now and thanks for reading this post here at The Keen Hunter. We are The Keen Hunter, hunting best products for all your needs on a daily basis.

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Motorola T260TP Talkabout Radio, 3 Pack

About the Editor

Simon Wagner

Simon Wagner

Simon is the owner and editor-in-chief for thekeehunter.com. He has been writing and publishing online reviews for fifteen years. Brett spends most of his time in the sunny Southern California beach town where he grew up.