In an ever-expanding world, we need more means to connect and share information. We have our cell phones and personal computer, but when looking to communicate with people in the same space as us, we look to cheaper options like walkie talkies. Of course, there are many on the market and choosing the right one might be difficult, especially on a budget, and this is why we come in. Our years of reviewing the best budge walkies have afforded some experience in the field and put us in the right position to draft this review of the best budget walkie talkies under $100.
Before you are ready to enter stores to search for your next two-way radio, there are a couple of things you must understand. These factors would guide you when making your pick and would ensure that at the end of the day when you swipe your card, you only leave the store with the most affordable walkie talkie.
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Considerations choosing the best walkie talkie under $100
You have two choices when it comes to choosing what frequency your radio would operate on, UHF or VHF. We get asked the question ‘what is the difference between uhf and vhf?’. UHF means ultra-high frequency and is one of the transmission bands radios broadcast on, it has its pros and cons, with the pros far outweighing the other. It has a shorter wavelength allowing it to better penetrate steel and concrete.
VHF, on the other hand, means a very high frequency. It is broadcasting between 30MHz and 300Mhz. It is most appreciated when it is used in the outdoors; this is why it is used by maritime and aviation outfits. If you have an event in the open or need some work done on some field, radios with this frequency type are the best option.
This simply means the longest distance the radio pairs can be apart for and still communicate effectively. It goes without saying that radios with the longer-range are the wiser pick. When you are in the outdoors with family and friends, the difference between a successful outing might be the ability to communicate across long distances. Being able to discuss effectively over such long ranges offers another layer of security.
These devices are roughly the size of a mobile phone and can very easily slip out your hands; this is why it is important that they are built sturdy. The build quality would determine to a large extent how long you can use these radios for. Many people use their walkies in demanding terrains, and this requires that they are constructed to withstand the wear and tear constant use my bring. The best walkies usually have textures that dissuade grip and in some cases are waterproof and dustproof, so you can get more use out of your device.
Your radio can have all the future tech, fun and exciting features, but it would not matter if it does not stay powered on long enough for you to discover these interesting add ons. It is imperative that in your search for a new radio, you keep an eye out for one that offers extensive battery life. There might be times when you would be off-grid and unable to charge your device, in situations like these, you need your device to be able to stay on as possible. The need to keep your radio on has seen some top companies invest in alternate power sources like solar energy. The best walkie talkies should have a tightly sealed compartment that does not enable water to enter the battery, or the battery fall out.
Best Walkie Talkies under $100
We looked to combine quality with value and came up with these awesome radios for your budget. Enjoy!
1. Arcshell Two Way Radios
If you are looking for a radio that does it all without breaking the bank, the archsell just might be the one for you. It is compact and portable, allowing you to fit it easily into your pocket or in your travel nag when you are looking to travel. Each radio pair has a removable belt clip and water-resistant build, so the radio can be used anywhere, and everywhere you go. These radios operate on a frequency range of UHF 400-470 MHz; they come with 16 channels pre-installed on the pair straight out of the box, with a synthesized voice informing you of your channel change every time you turn the channel selector.
The radio pair comes with a rechargeable Li-ion battery of 1500mAh capacity each, an AC wall wart type a plug and charging dock. You have about 96 hours of talk time on a two and half hour charge depending on how much transmission is done. These radios come with state of the art speakers and receivers for crystal clear communication, and each with a single earbud earphone. The radio pair also features the VOX function that activates the radio with speech without having to use your hands; this would come in handy when you are working and really need to get a piece of information out.
2. Motorola T100TP
This blue beautiful two-way radio might not loom like much, but it does more than enough. The first thing that grabs your attention out the box is the stylish design; the aesthetics make this one of the best choices on the list. It is not just all bark; this radio packs some bite too. The simple, compact design makes it very easy to carry around when hiking with the family or camping with friends. It operates on three AAA alkaline batteries and would work for as much as 18 hours! It is also capable of receiving a transmission from GMRS and FMRS two way radios. It also has other cool features like auto squelch, talk confirmation tone, keypad tone, call tone and low battery led alert. If you are looking for that beautiful, durable, all-rounder walkie, you just might find it in this gorgeous Motorola radio.
3. Cobra RX680
The RX680 is by cobra attempts everything you would want from a walkie and gets everything right, the first time. This cheap walkie talkie has an LED flashlight at the base of the radio that keeps you going when the sun abandons you and allows you to get as much work done as possible. The radio informs you of incoming transmissions with either hepatic feedback (vibration) or an audible beep that calls your attention, especially when you are away from the device. With 2,662 channel combinations, 121 privacy codes and a long-range signal, as long as 38 miles on this bad boy, what is not to like?
The body of this device is also durably built, it is dustproof and waterproof, and it comes with rechargeable batteries that allow for about 18 hours of runtime, in the package is also a micro-USB charger so you can charge the device anywhere you find yourself. People who already own this radio can not stop talking about two features, the VOX function that allows you to communicate with teammates, friends and family without pushing any buttons, all hands-free and the NOAA alerts that inform you of how the weather is doing around your location.
4. GOCOM Walkies
If the beautiful design does not already have, you hooked on this excellent choice, the 75 hours of continuous usage and almost 120 days of standby time would grab your attention. You can opt for a seat charger that charges two at the same time, use the quick charger or opt for the rechargeable AA battery. Either choice you go with would see your radio work fine all the same. Like every other walkie, the range vary depending on how much obstruction is present in the area, if you are using it in town, you have a 3-mile range, in the woods you have 5 miles, 14 miles at open sea and between two mountain tops, you have a whopping 32-mile range. You have the option of a channel scan to look for activity and 2662 channel options.
It has an LCD screen with a LED flashlight that could serve as a quick alarm feature, a VOX function that enables you to talk hands-free when you are busy with work or other things, the single earbud earphone is aesthetically pleasing and at the same time offers premium sound quality. If all these could function are not enough, this rather underpriced walkie is waterproof, allowing you to carry it with you every step of the way, regardless of the terrain.
5. Baofeng BF-888S
This radio works in the frequency range f 400-470MHz. It is a 2-watt handheld radio that delivers a lot of quality; it allows for optimum communications as it comes fitted with customizable programming and 16 memory channels. It also features an emergency alarm and quality flashlight for when you need to work in poor lighting conditions. This functional radio also features alert for low voltage, other battery-saving functions and VOX mode for when your hands are occupied, and you still need to get that message out.