The best CB antenna is not exactly a rare gem. However, choosing the right one can be a little tricky or quirky. After all, the market today is filled with dozens of options for this particular CB radio accessory.
Specifically, a CB antenna optimizes the performance of a CB radio. By the way, CB stands for "Citizen's Band," which indicates that they are accessible frequency bands for folks like you and me. And having a CB radio, you will be able to get the same type of information and updates that you can receive from a ham radio. A CB antenna can prevent signals from being blocked, too.
Regardless of the use of your CB radio, the installation of a CB antenna is necessary. In here, I have listed some of the finest options that you can have for antennas for your CB radio. You can check them out and see which one can fit your needs.
Best CB Antenna On The 2019 Market
K40 K-30 35" 300 Watts CB Antenna
FS-4BK 4' Firestik(r) Ii Fs Series Tunable Tip Cb Antenna
Midland 18-2442 Mobile CB Antenna
WILSON 305-38 300-Watt Little Wil Magnet Mount Antenna
TRAM 703-HC Center Load CB Antenna Kit
Let's now review each antenna individually:
1. K40 K-30 35" 300 Watts CB Antenna
The K-30 is a CB antenna that you can certainly use. It is one of my favorite CB antennas today, considering that it is versatile, rugged, and downright functional.
I had tried this one on my RV, and it did wonders.
This particular antenna has a power-handling threshold of 300 watts, which is quite sufficient for a variety of CB radios already.
This antenna has a length of 35 feet, which is already an acceptable size for many CB radio owners. The antenna has been pre-wired, too, for quicker installation and lesser maintenance. Furthermore, its body has been wrapped with a coax cable. Such construction prevents the antenna from being a flimsy stick.
Another ergonomic feature of this antenna is the 180-degree radius tip. Such a design removes the need for you to use balls and magnets for its installation.
2. FS-4BK 4' Firestik(r) Ii Fs Series Tunable Tip Cb Antenna
It was in the mid-summer of 2016 that a fellow survivalist had introduced the Firestik FS-4BK to me.
I was configuring a CB radio with 26-27Mhz frequency when he showed it to me.
At first, I was skeptic using this antenna, considering that it was my first time using it. But due to his persistence, I tried it. And gladly, it worked well.
This particular Firestik CB antenna has a 5/8 wavelength design, which holds decent power and capacity.
Specifically, it is rated at 900 watts, which has surprised me indeed. I thought it was a bluff, but it worked that way. You can utilize this antenna for both dual and single configurations, which made it extremely versatile.
However, let me remind you that this one requires fine-tuning for Standing Wave Ratio (SWR) signals. It is a completely understandable drawback since no antennas have yet to solve this little quirky problem.
3. Midland 18-2442 Mobile CB Antenna
If you are looking an inexpensive CB antenna, you might want to try this Midland 18-2442.
It has a sturdy construction that is suited for external uses and different applications.
The antenna itself is powerful enough that it can provide sufficient reception for specific types of CB radios. Even for its inexpensive price, you will be surprised by the quality of this antenna.
The entire antenna has been installed on a center load mount so that it can remain balanced all the time.
The 17-7 stainless steel whip construction of this antenna guarantees its resistance from corrosion or rust. There is also a spring relief integrated on the system of this antenna. It ensures that whip damages are drastically lessened.
The Midland 18-2442 Mobile CB Antenna comes pre-wired already. No complex installation processes are needed before it could work. Right from the start, this CB antenna can display a high level of signal efficiency and reception.
4. WILSON 305-38 300-Watt Little Wil Magnet Mount Antenna
For a high-end CB antenna, the WILSON 305-38 should be one of your top choices.
You see, this CB antenna has a low-profile, but it doesn't mean that it has a flimsy performance.
The construction of this unit is superb and can easily survive different weather conditions and external elements.
The entire body is firm enough to withstand strong wind breezes.
This antenna features a 10-ounce magnet. The said component guarantees that this antenna will stay grounded on your vehicle.
Meanwhile, the coil of this antenna has a 14-gauge copper wire. The latter enhances the audio clarity of your radio. It is a beneficial feature if you are constantly dealing with noisy background noises.
Of course, you can ensure that this one can improve the reception of your radio. It can double the transmitting and receiving capacity of the device, which is essential for extensive and rigorous applications.
5. TRAM 703-HC Center Load CB Antenna Kit
The TRAM 703-HC is definitely a fine piece of CB antenna at an entry-level value.
Despite its price-friendly tag, the TRAM 703-HC is capable of covering different frequencies in the CB spectrum.
It can improve the reception of your CB radio and ensure that it can vocalize crystal clear audio, regardless of your location.
The TRAM 703-HC has a weather resistant construction. It is extremely rigid and doesn't yield down to corrosion, rust, and other quality-deteriorating elements. It also comes with a magnet mount, stainless steel whip, and shock spring. These components ensure that the antenna can remain stable and physically unharmed throughout your adventures.
Although it is true that the reception range of this antenna only extends up to 3 miles only, I still find it appropriate and decent. For an inexpensive CB antenna, such a feature is already surprising. I wouldn't wonder why I have a couple of colleagues who prefer this CB antenna on their rigs.
CB Antennas And CB Radios
Before I fully discuss the function of a CB antenna, it is appropriate if I should highlight what a CB radio is. Read on to find out.
In my years of experience in handling different radios and transmitters, I have several encounters with people who think that a ham radio and a CB radio is the same. Even though it makes me cringe, I could still not blame them. Aside from their appearance, these two terms are being used interchangeably--but inappropriately.
Of course, I always take time to educate these curious people if they would seek my counsel. In layman's perspective, I always highlight that a CB radio (or citizen's band radio) is a more accessible version of a ham radio. The latter does require you to have a license to operate. A CB radio doesn't.
On my end, I also always emphasize that ham radios are a little bit complex compared to a CB radio. Technically, an operator must be knowledgeable in dealing with the spectrum of frequencies that are present on a ham radio. Moreover, they should also know how to work things if there is radio traffic going on.
A CB radio doesn't have complexities like this. I am not saying that a ham radio is too difficult to use. In fact, I highly urge that people would try to learn how to use them. It is just that at this point, CB radios are more user-friendly.
Once you have a CB radio, investing in the best CB antenna should be your next priority.
What Is A CB Antenna
A CB antenna is an essential component for the proper operation of a CB radio. As of now, there's nothing more vital than it. I just want to dismiss the idea that the built-in antennas of CB radios are already sufficient. If there are certain demands and requirements, the factory-built antennas of these radios may not come suitably. You can say that concept is similar to VHF antennas.
There are two functions that a CB antenna can provide you. First, it gets radio frequencies that are being converted into electrical signals through the receiver of the radio. In an opposite manner, the transmitter of the radio converts its electrical signals into radio frequencies. The antenna then radiates these radio frequencies.
The second function of a CB antenna is to optimize the reach of the frequency signals of a radio. At this point, you'll realize that antennas tailored by third-party manufacturers have been designed to match the wavelengths of the radio frequency being transmitted by the radio. When it comes to tuning purposes, such quality of a CB antenna is extremely necessary.
Finding The Proper Length Of The Best CB Antenna
Every application and setup require finding the appropriate length of a CB antenna. In fact, it is one of the most immaculate consideration in choosing a CB antenna.
The wavelength capacity of an antenna is connected to how long it is. A full wavelength is 984 megahertz per frequency. A CB radio frequency starts around 25 megahertz. Therefore, if you want an antenna that can create a full wavelength, make sure that it has a length of 39 feet.
But of course, that one is a little too long, right? You can't attach a 40-foot antenna on the bumper of your vehicle. What we usually do is to select antennas that are just part of one full wavelength. You can see variants like 1/2 wavelength, 5/8 wavelength, 1/8 wavelength, and 1/4 wavelength. These options are pretty common for CB antennas.
For instance, 1/4 CB antennas have a length of around 10 feet. It is commonly known as the "whip." That's the one that you see on vehicles like trucks and cars. In fact, your RV might need them, too.
CB radios can accommodate up to 40 channels. Of course, each of these frequencies has corresponding frequencies. As far as I know, it is not right that you purchase different antennas for a particular frequency. That is seemingly impractical unless you have the sufficient purchasing power.
CB antenna manufacturers have to deal with this problem. Most of the time, what they do is to choose the frequency that is in the middle of the spectrum. After this, they would select the appropriate antenna length for such frequency.
Well, not everyone can do this right. One thing that you have to inspect is the proper integration of the Standing Wave Ratio of the CB antenna. Usually, meticulous tuning is done until such time the SWR of the antenna corresponds to its height, design, and frequency.
When having a CB radio, it is also proper that you invest in the best CB radio as well. It is the right amenity that can improve the overall performance if your radio is capturing specific radio frequencies. These antennas are great for capturing signals from different radios, which in turn, can get you updated.
There are a lot of CB antennas that exist on the market today. However, only the best ones have been featured here. You might want to inspect them first before going to other options. They are good starter units. But certainly, they have the qualities that can meet your preferences and needs.
That's it for now. If you have questions or suggestions, feel free to drop them in the comment section below.
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