The Best CB Radio For Your Vehicle
It is not right to feature CB antennas without highlighting the awesomeness of the best CB radios. If you want a communicating device that can get you on the grid of information and updates, these CB radios are certainly helpful.
A CB radio, or Citizen's Band radio, is a device that offers an accessible two-way communication service. It has an accessibility that is way better than ham radio. It is far more user-friendly because the setup is simple and straightforward. And just like what I have mentioned in the past, these CB radios don't require a license to operate.
There are a lot of things that we should discuss these CB radios. But this time, it is quite appropriate that I will highlight first the top CB radios that exist in the market today. Who knows? You might see these devices as a plausible investment in the near future. Read on now.
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- Best CB Radio On The 2019 Market
- Why You Need The Best CB Radio In Your Vehicle
- Features Of The Best CB Radio
- Final Verdict
Best CB Radio On The 2019 Market
1. Cobra 29LX Professional CB Radio - Editor's Pick
2. Uniden Bearcat 980SSB - Runner-Up
3. Uniden PRO505XL CB Radio - Price-Friendly Option
4. President McKinley USA CB Radio SSB - Premium Choice
5. Cobra 25 LTD 40-Channel CB Radio - Best CB Radio for Ergonomics
#1. Cobra 29LX Professional CB Radio - Editor's Pick
The brand Cobra is one of the top producers of two-way radios in the market today. In my experience in dealing with these radios, I have encountered several of their units. A few of them have made a mark on me. And that includes the Cobra 29LX Professional CB Radio. This particular unit is made for daily use. It has a hassle-free operation, which makes it a good choice for amateur operators.
The interface of this radio features an LCD that has selectable display color. It allows you to see the status of the device for easier operation. This radio also has NOAA weather channels that have been integrated on its system. You will always know if there are impending weather conditions that can cause delays on your part. It can also automatically tune itself to the channel that has the most abrupt latest update.
A useful clock and alarm system has been placed to the Cobra 29LX to further enhance its functionality. An ergonomic automatic diagnostic is prompted by this radio to assess its RF and voltage output. Antenna matching is also readily available on this CB radio.
- Automatic weather scan
- Clear and configurable LCD
- Can easily match third-party antennas
- Built-in alarm and clock
- Automatic diagnostic system.
- No noticeable drawbacks.
#2. Uniden Bearcat 980SSB - Runner-Up
I could not also easily ignore the presence of Uniden Bearcat 980SSB whenever I see it being displayed. There are numerous instances where I have tried to operate this particular CB radio from the Uniden. It is a tough piece of equipment. That's what I can guarantee. It has superb ergonomics that make it very user-friendly item.
The price of this item is pretty standard. Therefore, investing in it shouldn't become a problem on your part. Of course, you'll get more compelled once you discover some of its impressive features. It has a wide and full-screen LCD that prompts all the necessary information that you need from the radio. It also features a noise-canceling microphone.
I have to tell that the Uniden Bearcat 980SSB is compatible with several wireless microphones for CB radios. It is one of the most desirable features that this radio has. Automatic radio diagnostics are also readily available on the Bearcat 980SSB radio.
- Impressive hardware ruggedness
- Compatible with wireless microphones
- Built-in microphone has a noise-canceling feature
- Capable of weatherscan
- Highly visible LCD.
- The LCD screen gets scratched easily; only use a microfiber in cleaning it
- Beeping sound every after configuration is quite a nuisance.
#3. Uniden PRO505XL CB Radio - Price-Friendly Option
Of course, it would be a bad thing if we skip out some of the decent CB radios on the entry-level category. After all, I have already seen budget-friendly two-way radios that can do a lot of things. For this particular category, I have to place the Uniden PRO505XL CB Radio on the limelight. It has an entry-level value, but its quality is downright superb.
One of the key features of this radio is its public address function. With the later, you will be able to connect the radio to an external speaker. You can do this whenever there are urgent or emergency announcements that should be made. The radio automatically cranks itself to channel 9, which is the general emergency service channel in most frequencies.
Overall, the radio has around forty channels that you can utilize for group or private communication. It is also notable that the radio is capable of RF diagnostic. It can assess the strength of its signal of incoming transmissions. Such a feature would allow you to configure the radio to optimize its performance.
- Capable of connecting to external PA speakers
- Automatically sets itself to emergency channels
- Comes with up to forty channels
- Visible LCD
- Features a rugged mounting system.
- Default speaker is not that audible
- Tends to jump to one or two frequencies when scanning.
#4. President McKinley USA CB Radio SSB - Premium Choice
It is also a worthy thing to consider the quality of the President McKinley USA CB Radio SSB. This particular option is downright functional and powerful. When paired with a good CB antenna, this thing can provide strong reception for signal transmission. Several weather frequencies are also integrated on the system of this CB radio for quicker and real-time updates.
Of course, there are several features that you can harness on the President McKinley USA CB Radio SSB. Such of these is its switchable talkback, RF power control, ANL, and an ergonomic noise blanker. It also has an automatic channel scan that is vividly displayed on its LCD screen. You can configure the latter's color for optimal visibility.
This CB radio also comes with a voice-operated switch (VOX) for enhanced functionality. It allows a hands-free operation, which is a great thing for busy and erratic situations.
- Automatic squelch function
- Voice-operated capability
- Features multiple weather bands
- Strong radio signal transmission
- Comes with a stable mounting platform.
- It comes with small buttons, which are tricky to navigate
- Generates a noticeable alternator noise.
#5. Cobra 25 LTD 40-Channel CB Radio - Best CB Radio for Ergonomics
I have mentioned already that CB radios are generally user-friendly. However, if you want something that has all the ergonomics in the world, you will certainly have to try the Cobra 25 LTD. This one has a professional-grade construction, which features some improvements to its drivers.
This one features microphone connector on its front panel for easier installation. Take into account that the microphone of this CB radio has a 9-foot cord. You will no longer have to deal with short cords that can make your setup a lot difficult. Furthermore, all the controls and buttons on this CB radio has been configured so they can become more tactile. You will no longer have the tendencies to press the wrong buttons here.
- Automatic preset on the Channel 9
- PA-capable CB radio
- Noise blanker feature
- Full RF control
- Strong signal transmission.
- The built-in speaker is not that great.
Why You Need The Best CB Radio In Your Vehicle
In an era where the computers, smartphones, and tablets are truly dominating, it is quite rare already for people to search the old-but-good devices. Items like handheld ham radios, long range walkie-talkies, and long range two-way radios are already considered things of the past by many. And sadly, that's really the case.
Unfortunately, they are not aware that these modern things are not that stable. When satellites and towers collapse, the things that you are holding frequently in your hands will not be in use anymore. And that's the most alarming thing here. You see, our societies are always on the verge of these threats that could immediately level down our progression. Once that happens, you will find yourself reeling and disconnected.
A radio, specifically a CB radio, is something that you can rely on when these modern services will fail. It can get you on the grid as long as other radio services are being offered. As a matter of fact, many government emergency services operate on frequencies that are tapped by these CB radios. You will definitely get something here.
But aside from this perk, there are a lot of things that you can get from having a CB radio on your vehicle. Whether you have a truck or an RV, a CB radio will come beneficial.
One of the key advantages of a CB radio is its simplicity. It is an indispensable item that you can access without being complicated by its cost or operation. Unlike VHF or UHF radios, owning a CB radio doesn't require you to own a license. Furthermore, they don't really cost that much. Well, if you compare a CB radio to cellular phones, it is undeniable that the latter is cheaper. But the long-term cost of getting prepaid load and data services can overturn such fact. On the other hand, a CB radio and CB antenna are just one-time purchases.
Compared to other communicating devices like cellular phones, CB radios don't suffer from weak or spotty signals. You can't rely on a phone anymore in places where there are no satellite services anymore. If you are travelling to distant destinations, these cellular are not reliable at all.
A CB radio can survive these circumstances. Since radio signals can be everywhere, it is also a given that a CB radio can operate ubiquitously. Many government and third-party groups are sharing the frequencies of a CB radio. You can always get the update that you need.
Features Of The Best CB Radio
If you are new to this stuff, it is quite understandable that you can easily get confused by the various terms that revolve around it. For you to get the right CB radio, you must know all of its essential features first.
Single Side Band (SSB)
All of the CB radios that I have listed here are all SSB. The latter guarantees that the radio is capable of transmitting up to 12 watts of power. Ordinary CB radios can only do as much as 4 watts, which is not good for strengthening a transmission range. If you are communicating with another radio or station, their devices should have SSB capability. Otherwise, they won't reach you at all.
The squelch control enables the radio to remain static until there are incoming transmissions. It is a standard feature for various CB radios nowadays because it improves the overall functionality of these devices.
When a CB radio has an RF gain, it means that the device is capable of filtering transmissions. Specifically, the filter process is quite dependent on the strength of the incoming signal. It is a necessary feature that guarantees that no subtle background noises can be heard while you are talking. You can also use this to amplify a weak transmission.
A CB radio that has a PA system will allow you to connect it to a public address platform. Of course, this will require you to have a PA horn that you can install on the top of your vehicle.
It is necessary for CB radios to have access to a plethora of weather channels. Features like weatherscan and NOAA are extremely crucial for the user to get updated to developing situations like storms and typhoons. These channels will also provide real-time advisories for sudden road closures or detours.
For vehicles which are always on the go, the installment of the best CB radio is extremely crucial. When your wheels go off-the-grid, a CB radio will ensure that you can remain updated. It can provide you faster means of accessing crucial information regarding emergencies and weather services.
All of the CB radios that I have listed here are extremely prompt and ergonomic. You will love to have them in your vehicle because of their impressive transmission capabilities. For instance, the Cobra 29LX Professional CB Radio can guarantee excellent reception regardless of where you are. It can also provide a smooth interface, which promotes simpler operation.
That's it for now. If you have questions or suggestions, feel free to drop them in the comment section below.