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Having the best ham radio is useful in case of an emergency when phones and the internet aren’t available. Here’s a guide to help you select the best amateur radio depending on your budget or experience level.

RELATED: Ham Radio Training: The Serious Survivalist’s Most Critical “Life-Line”

Top 11 Ham Radios on the Market | Best Ham Radio to Use

1. Wouxon KG-UV9D

You can enter the ham radio world with this affordable device from China. One of its noteworthy capacities is that its ultra-high-frequency or UHF is reprogrammable.

Depending on your preference, you can arrange its settings to accept and transfer a communication on 220 MHz or 440 MHz. It includes a full range of voice announcements to cater to visually-impaired users.

Additionally, it holds up seven bands reception and has an integrated flashlight.

2. AnyTone AT-D878UV

Apart from being a ham radio, this unit also serves as a handheld GPS. Whether you’re biking, hiking, or doing other sorts of activities, this device will provide positioning and navigation.

Add a personal touch to this model as the font colors are customizable. You can also monitor two timeslot zones, and its database is complete worldwide. It offers an incredible capacity of 4,000 channels, 10,000 talk groups, and 200,000 digital contacts.


BTECH focuses on the development of its radio products. This allows you to have the best ham radio with accessories, features, and warranty. It even took two years for this model to evolve.

If you’re looking for a versatile amateur radio, this is the best device that’s available on the market. You can change its background to blue for nighttime use, or black during the daytime. Its battery is also long-lasting and can run up to 35 hours.

It can keep up to 4,000 channels and 200,000 contacts as well, allowing you to have a huge virtual audience. The best thing is that you can customize this ham radio with their free programming software.

4. Whistler WS1040 Handheld Digital Scanner Radio

Be always in the know and the first to hear storm announcements with this ham radio. Its technology allows you to learn about upcoming weather reports before they’re televised. With this, you’ll be able to prepare as soon as possible.

Don’t get overwhelmed with its programs. Every item in this amateur radio’s menu comes with a few descriptive lines to assist you. It also has a function that lets you sort objects depending on your preference.

This handheld ham radio has modern audio hardware for clear reception and communication. It allows you to look for frequency transmissions in your local area and transfer to them.

5. BaoFeng BF-F8HP

Maximize your ham radio with the built-in features that come with this model. It has a frequency modulation or FM and a flashlight as well. Its 24-hour battery life lets you communicate without recharging it for a day.

It provides eight watts of output power and has a high-quality radio shell to resist wear and tear. You’ll also make the most out of this device as it comes with an earpiece, belt clip, and hand strap.

Even beginners in the ham radio world can use this model. It comes with a detailed manual for an easy user experience. You can also enjoy its after-sales services such as warranty and customer support.

6. BaoFeng UV-82HP

Program your ham radio the way you want it. With this unit’s 128 memory channels, you can add, remove, or assign alphanumeric names to them. Its three power levels let you select how far you can send messages.

It’s also referred to as a tri-power radio. This is because it has a frequency range of 136-174MHZ on UHF, 400-520 on VHF, and 65-108 on FM. It also has a dual push to talk or PTT button which means that you can communicate on two frequencies.

RELATED: An Easy Way to Set Up Your HAM Radio

7. Radioddity GD-77

Be amazed at how crystal clear and noise-free the audio is from this ham radio. Even if you turn up its volume, the sound won’t even get distorted.

You’ll also get a mobile phone-like feature with its short message service or SMS function. Once you set it to DMR mode, you can already send messages to other radios.

8. TYT TH-9800 Quad Band Mobile Two Way Radio

With this model, you’ll have not just one but a total of four bands! Enjoy the power of this transceiver with sophisticated features at a low price.

Each variable frequency oscillator or VFO has knobs for squelch, channel, and volume. It has a full twin display and accepts additional frequencies.

9. TYT MD-UV380

The best ham radio is reliable no matter the situation. It relays information regardless of the circumstances. This device holds up to these ideas and doesn’t fail on communicating as its screen is easy to read day and night.

It supports two kinds of antennas – the stubby and the white band whip. Additionally, it comes with a belt clip so you don’t have to worry about this model slipping from your hand.

10. Xiegu G90 HF Amateur Radio

If you’re big on aesthetics, this is the ideal ham radio for you. With its colorful display, your communication will get more exciting. Even the keypad of its microphone has a backlight.

You can also place your radio’s head wherever you want. It has a detachable design wherein you can separate the display head from the main body.

11. BaoFeng UV-5R

If you’re looking for a handheld radio that doesn’t break the bank, then this is the ideal model for you. Its low price doesn’t sacrifice its reliability. It’s one of the most inexpensive on the market yet offers the needed functions in a portable radio.

Carrying this device around won’t be a problem if you’re always on the go. You can switch its power settings from high to low so you can conserve its battery life. It also has an impressive speaker output so you won’t have trouble hearing in any situation.

Learn about the features of amateur radios so you can get the best ham radio that’s suitable for your needs. Watch this video by TinHatRanch to know the answers to your other questions on amateur radio:

Despite the advances in technology, radio still plays a role in long-distance communication. It’s one of the most economical means to send messages across the globe. Invest in the best ham radio so you can enjoy its full potential.

What do you think is the best ham radio for beginners? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below!

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