Baofeng walkie talkie radios are known for their intelligent design, crisp audio quality, and exciting features, but what sets the baofeng radio models apart from the competition are their competitive prices. This innovative company has found a way to deliver quality to users without hurting their finances. There are many models to choose from, each with its perks and downsides; this is where this review comes in, to introduce you to the best walkie talkies from Baofeng. If you are wondering which baofeng to buy, where to buy it and why? Wonder no more as this baofeng review answers all these questions and other cogent ones.
Table of Contents
11 Best Baofeng Walkie Talkies
1. BaoFeng UV-5R
This is a tremendous radio with its compact and easy to use design and its features and accessories. It is one of the best radios on the market with its long-range, dual power input or dual charging methods and dual-band display. The BaoFeng handheld radio is tough and sturdy, and it’s lightweight and small size makes it easy to hold as it fits into your hands with ease. It also has a VOX function to communicate hands-free using the ham radio, making for a great BaoFeng UV 5R review.
- The radio has a 136-174 / 400-520 MHz frequency range that allows you to communicate over a very long distance.
- It has a large LCD screen with three backlight colors to select from.
- It uses an included Lithium Polymer battery, provides a 4-watt output power and has durable battery life.
- Users need to purchase a programming cable to get the radio programmed for use.
2. BaoFeng BF-888s
Your conversation doesn’t get interrupted and can be heard with clear sound quality with this long-range two-way radio. The walkie talkie comes with an original programming cable that can be used to program 50 CTCSS and 105 CDCSS tones and a desktop charger for each unit. The VOX function allows you to use voice prompt in English and Chinese to operate the BaoFeng radios. It has a belt clip and wrist strap for portability and a flash, so you never have to worry about the dark.
- It has 16 channels for you to pick from and has a quick scanning function.
- The two-way radio comes with an English user manual.
- The ham radio has a 3watt power output for impressive battery power and uses 1500mah li-ion batteries, including the extra TID battery.
- Signal strength is affected by the presence of an obstruction in the terrain.
3. BaoFeng GT-22
The Baofeng GT-22 FRS is hands down, one of the best ham two way radio in the market. The device boasts a signal strength of up to 4 miles, which is great for use outdoors due to its long-distance coverage. It makes communication with staff over long distances easy. The two-way radio comes with a useful belt clip and a hand strap, which can also work for other Baofeng radio products. Its out of the way antenna that provides quality signal reception, coupled with its aesthetic look and feel, makes the Baofeng GT-22 FRS perform its functions without discomforting the user and blend with the environment. Its functionality includes squelch, TOT, VOX, busy channel lockout, and battery save function, with its frequency range set to the FRS channel. A gem amongst walkie talkies, well worth its price.
- Comes with an earpiece
- Fast charging (attains full charge in under 4 hours)
- Rechargeable battery life up to 40 hours
- Good audio quality
- No protruding screws on the radio
- Equipped with Voice-activated VOX
- Not waterproof
- Only works on FRS frequency
- No LED display
4. BaoFeng 2-Pack Upgrade UV-5R 5
The Baofeng UV-5R5 walkie talkie is arguably one of the best in the radio market. It boasts of a much-needed versatility thanks to the numerous functions it has. The Baofeng UV-5R5 has two selective power levels: the low power 1W and high power 4 to 5W options. The frequency ranges available include FM radio (65 0 – 108 0 MHz), VHF (136-174 MHz) and UHF (400 – 520 MHz). It consists of 128 channels, 105 code DCS and 50 code CTCSS. It can broadcast and receive radio transmission as far as 25 miles thanks to its high gain 7” antenna that still ensures quality sound. The radio is equipped with a squelch feature that can be adjusted with assigned buttons. Its wide range of frequencies is a feat that is rarely achieved by ham radios. With a battery output power of 1800 mah, it can last through the day without recharging. It has a push to talk (PTT) button that is easy to reach without overly distracting the user from his engagement. At its price, it’ll be a good buy for ham radios rarely operate UHF 400 and above.
- Can be used in the dark thanks to the LED display
- Sports a handy flashlight
- Versatility serves well in an industrial setting
- Although rainproof, excess water will damage it
- The antenna can sometimes get in the way
5. BaoFeng BF-F9V2
The Baofeng-9V2+ is a dual-band two-way radio that has enough functions to make it one of the best amongst Baofeng radios. With an average battery life of 26 hours thanks to it 2100 MAh Li-ion battery, the two-way ham radio makes communications swift and easy with up to 128 channels available for use, truly a gem amongst walkie talkies.
It is equipped with an LED display that shows battery life, selected power options and other important information. It sports a comfortable grip and a powerful battery.
It allows you vary the power levels (high-8W, med-4W, low-1W) 8 watts radio support. It only operates as simple or semi-duplex. With its high gain antenna, the walkie talkie has long-range support of 5 miles and a frequency range that includes FM radio (65-108 MHz), VHF (136-174MHz(Tx/Rx)) and UHF (400-480MHz (Tx/Rx))
Equipped with a flashlight with two modes, ‘Always on,’ that is used for darkness lighting and ‘Keep flashing,’ that can be used to ask for help（SOS）or as a response to your companions; effect for construction sites.
The most powerful signal model, these specifications make it the best Baofeng radio in the market.
- Comes with an earphone and belt clip
- Lightweight at 130g
- Programmable and easy to use
- Not waterproof even though it’s made for the outdoors
6. BaoFeng UV-5RH
The Baofeng UV-5RH is the newest version of the Baofeng UV-5R high power series. It is an 8 watts two-way radio with available frequencies 136-174 MHz and 400-480 MHz. It also has a unique frequency receiver band from 65-108 MHz. Channel steps include 2.5/5/6.2512.5/20/25 kHz. The 8 watts high power radio comes with an SMA female antenna and a flexible antenna; thanks to this, it boasts a 12-mile signal radius. You have the option of selecting RF power at high 8 watts, mid 4 watts or low power 1-watt options. The 1800 mAh Li-on battery allows for communication well over 30 hours, which is very efficient as most walkie talkies are made and used for such long hours. The dual-band two-way radio has several options, which include the ability to customize channel names. The baofeng radio has a top-class performance and is suitable for use on a variety of occasions. The Baofeng UV-5RH has a push to talk (PTT) button available and an LED display equipped with essential information like the selected channel and RF power. It also supports dual watch and dual reception. In the package alongside the radio is an earpiece and belt clip.
- Comes with an English user guide that makes it easy to use
- Equipped with an auto keypad lock that prevents erroneous function changes
- Battery life not as strong as other baofeng products
7. BaoFeng UV-5R Plus(Jungle Camouflage)
The BaoFeng UV-5R (Jungle Camouflage) is a two-way radio with 50 CTCSS and 104 DCS. BaoFeng radios have a design that is simple, compact and makes for easy usage. Its in-built speaker gives clear, loud sound, and the flashlight helps you when you go out in the night or while you explore dark environments. The radio has an LCD screen with an HD color display on which you can view the power level of your device and the dual-band antenna, which is an upgrade from the previous version.
- It has VOX and voice prompt features for hands-free communication.
- The FM radio is available to keep up with news and broadcasts.
- It comes with a 1800mAH Li-ion battery pack and a power adapter to adjust voltage and output.
- The walkie talkie has a tough metal shell to ensure durability.
- A license is required before you can use this radio.
- Using the flashlight can cause a quicker battery drain.
8. Baofeng UV5RA
Baofeng products are always outstanding. Unlike others in its range, this is a standard upgrade with lightweight and distinct details. The Special VHF radio receives band from 65-108 MHz, and its RF power can be selected at 1 or 4 watts. Its frequency range is one of a kind, and its communication efficiency is second to none. The radio is a dual-band FM receiver, which features an LCD screen. Best baofeng radio so far. Let’s not forget to mention its speaker output, and its long battery life gives it a perfect condition for use anywhere. There are few dual band two-way radio with these features.
- The radio has a dual-band.
- The radio features VHF and UHF frequencies.
- The radio allows the user a long battery life.
- Its Large LCD display allows for more work.
- The radio overheats
- The charging base is not so durable
9. Baofeng UV-82
The UV-82 is one amateur ham radio you can not wait to have on your belt; this dual-band two-way radio is the ideal long-range communication device. Couple this with its user-friendly interface, including its state-of-the-art LCD screen, dynamic power settings and other features that ensure you get the most value for your money. The UV-82 ham radios also feature an emergency alarm, keypad lock. UHF and VHF bands that provide you can easily connect and communicate with your team members. The aggregate of these exciting functions makes this arguably the best radio every produced by the manufacturer,
- The gadget is DTMF encoded
- The device has a wattage of 8W
- Its antenna allows you more range for communication
- It features CTCSS and DCS squelch that prevents interference
- The programming of the device can be done with a computer
- The device might be complicated to program
10. BAOFENG GT-3TP MarkIII
This is touted by many as the best baofeng radio on the market, and when you consider the performance of the device, you would understand why this claim is often made. This dual-band two-way radio is a bundle of different exciting functions we have come to expect from the radio brand. The radio has an FM radio feature, an LED flashlight, a power 3800mAh battery, an HGA antenna for improved communication range, and its construction assures the user of its durability. In the package are this radio model, a belt clip and a car charger when you are on the road.
- With up to 8 watts output power (8W), you get clear reception on this device
- It has a single push to talk button setup
- The radio features CTCSS and DCS privacy tones
- The antenna is not durable
- The radio could overheat when charging
11. Baofeng UV-5R TP
This radio is the tri-power version of the original UV 5R radio, just like most other radios on this product list. Its rugged build and structure make it the perfect radio for the outdoors, any terrain or environment. With its power setting feature, it can increase or reduce its transmission out power to give you more range in areas with an obstruction or when you need to send information across longer distances. The UV-5R TP is an easy to use radio, and with the easy to understand user manual, you would require little to no experience to operate this device. This radio meets all the ham radio requirements and is a must-have if you are an amateur radio operator.
- The power settings allow you toggle among the 1W, 4W and 8 watts options.
- The radio has an FM radio function
- The tri-power feature makes it an upgrade to most of the other radios in production
- You might need to alternate batteries, as its 1800mah battery pales in comparison to others
Overall Best Buy
The Baofeng GT-3P Mark III. All the radios on this list are exceptional in many ways than one and would offer you a range of features that would ensure you get the most out of the purchase, but the best by a country mile has to be the GT-3P Mark III for the following reasons.
Of all the radios on this best radio reviews, the Mark III stands out for its aesthetics and appealing appearance. The orange parts by the radio side make it beautiful and visible if it falls off, and you need to look for it in places in low lighting. Couple this with the amazing features like tri-power settings, the broad frequency range, quality audio and superior quality, and you would understand why this is the best of the rest.
Best Budget Buy
The Baofeng GT 22. The first thing that strikes you when you look at this radio is that it is without a display. This can be off-putting, but on using the device, you would realize that the manufacturer has made the radio one of the most comfortable use that makes the screen unnecessary. The lack of a display could be seen as a design feature as it brings down the weight and thickness of the radio to the barest minimum. When you consider the fact that you would be getting two quality radios at under $25, you would be able to appreciate how sweet a bargain this purchase is entirely.
Considerations choosing a Baofeng Walkie Talkie
At first glance, most of these radios look alike and allow you to toggle between high power levels and low power levels; they are majorly bulky and offer nearly the same functionalities. You begin to notice some slight differences on close inspection: some radios have an LED display, and others have an LCD display. The similarities and dissimilarities make a choice even more complicated, and this is why we have drafted a list of the important factors to consider when making that choice. They are:
If you want something small and handy, you are very likely barking up the wrong tree. This does not mean Baofeng does not have small-sized radios on sale, but most of them are stocky, affecting their handling and usage. The size is often a consequence of the large batteries in the units; they offer a long battery life and allow you to enjoy all the other radio features.
The radio’s design means you have a sizeable push to talk button that is easy to access, with varying transmission power for more communication when you need more. The radio has a state of the art screen to inform you of the radio vitals, like the battery power level and privacy codes as an example. All these should make the radio fragile and susceptible to damage. Still, the body’s design and the materials’ quality means that the radio can survive falls from considerable heights. This should not be a license to be careless with the device.
One of the many things baofeng radios are known for is the extended battery life; the units are powered by powerful batteries that ensure that you can use the radios for as long as 24 hours. This is important because if the power unit or battery pack is ineffective, it will mar the overall experience using the baofeng radio.
The VOX feature allows you to use the communication radio hands-free; this results from the intelligent circuit in the design that activates the radio once a signal is received. This will enable you to get more work done and allows for efficiency.
This allows you to plug in your earpiece, headset or headphones to communicate with friends, family or teammates. It also allows you to listen to music playing on your favorite radio station if your choice radio has an FM radio feature.
If you are looking to pick up a ham radio and worry about having to cough up too much money, you are in the right place as baofeng satisfies all your ham radio needs without hurting your finances. The radios offer a certain quality that has become synonymous with the baofeng brand at competitive market prices. The following radios have been carefully selected to fit in every budget.
Are ham radios illegal?
They are only considered illegal if you are transmitting without a license. It is totally fine if you have yourself a license.
Do you need a permit to purchase ham radios?
No, you do not. You can own a ham radio; you can even listen for frequencies on the radio. The downside to not having a license is unable to transmit on the radio.
Do I need experience using other radios before owning a ham radio?
Experience definitely helps make everything more straightforward, but these radios come with detailed guides in their packages that make it simple for anyone to pick up and eventually understand how the radios work.
What is the average ham radio range?
You need to understand that the range is dependent on the weather, obstructions in your environment, among many other factors. But on average, your radio should allow you at least two miles of range.