It is best to be prepared for emergency situations, and the best way to do that is with mobile ham radio. The best thing about these radios is that they can be installed in your vehicle so you never have to worry about being out of range or not having access. In addition, there are many different models and brands available on the market today and we will show you some of them below!
Here Are The Top 3 Mobile Ham Radio To Check At A Glance If You Are In A Hurry:
Top 9 Best Mobile Ham Radio Reviewed
Buying Guide For The Best Mobile Ham Radio
1. How much do I really need to spend on a mobile radio?
Mobile radios come in all shapes and sizes from high-end professional rigs with lots of bells and whistles at the price to be expected, down to VHF handhelds that will do an adequate job for minimal cost. If you’re going to splurge on a good rig, make sure it has features you’ll actually use – not just ones that sound cool or look impressive. You can pick up a decent dual-band VHF/UHF rig for around $200 that would suit your needs if it’s primarily local range communications (within 30 miles) you want. Another option is to go for a handheld transceiver with built-in mobile mounting brackets and power options – these are fine if you’re looking at communicating on the local repeaters or possibly even on simplex out to around 5 miles, but they are by no means “all-in-one” solutions since you’ll have an incredibly limited number of channels available. If your needs are anything beyond this scope, you will find yourself paying for it one way or another – whether it’s through not being able to get the needed range out of your mobile setup or buying multiple kits instead of using a single all-band/all-mode mobile radio that can do everything you need it to.
2. What kind of antenna am I going to use?
This is something elsewhere you’ll need to take a look at your needs and decide what is reasonable for the price. If it’s only the local range you’re looking at, chances are that any antenna will do – but any extended range operations will require an external antenna if not very careful attention is paid to grounding/battery drain/etc. Keep in mind that unless you have a commercial vehicle or RV, there is usually limited space available for mounting antennas on top of your car or truck – so make sure whatever route you choose leaves enough room for radios/lights/windshield wipers, etc.
3. How am I going to power my radio?
Any mobile radio will require 12-16vdc direct current (DC) power to work, so unless you happen to have a car battery wired and sitting under your seat – you’ll need some sort of power source. There are two main options here:
a) Get a complete mobile kit – these come with everything (radio, antenna, DC power & mount, speaker/mic). These can be relatively expensive depending on the brand and what you’re looking for – but they usually include everything that’s needed; or
b) Get each piece separate – This is by far the most economical route if your needs are reasonably low-end. A decent dual-band radio will run around $175-$200 and an antenna for it will probably be another $75-$100 (including mounts/cables etc.), which means you can easily get by for less than $300 – possibly even as little as $200 if you watch for sales.
4. What other accessories will I need?
This question is a lot harder to answer since it comes down to exactly what features your mobile rig has and what kind of tasks you want to use it for, but here are a few ideas:
a) A speaker/mic – these usually come with the radio itself, but they’re often cheap aftermarket devices that don’t sound all that great or last long. If you have a better option available go ahead and splurge on it – but in general try to stick with the OEM equipment when possible; b) Coax cable – This isn’t something everyone thinks about, but if you’re mounting your radio in the trunk it can be a real pain to run new cables when moving antennas, etc. around. Make sure your kit comes with enough coax to get the job done or that additional feet are easy to find/affordable; c) DC power adapters – The mobile radio is pretty self-sufficient once everything is hooked up, but consider accessories like cigarette lighter sockets for powering other items (GPS units, laptops, etc.) and USB charging ports coming out of the radio so you can keep your phone charged on longer trips;
5. What should I BYO?
The short answer here would read “nothing” since no one wants an incomplete kit where they have to go back and buy missing items, but there are a few things to consider:
a) Manuals and documentation – This can be especially helpful if you’re not familiar with whatever system your mobile rig comes with. Sometimes the manuals that come with aftermarket accessories aren’t all that complete/helpful so having something else available with more information is important; b) Mounting brackets – These may or may not come with your kit and it’s often difficult to find quality metal ones at retail stores since everything seems to be made of plastic these days. If mounting the radio in the trunk (like most people do), make sure you get good brackets specifically for this purpose; c) Power cables – If using commercial mounts, chances are they require certain types of power connectors and unless you have a power source nearby you’ll need an extra length of cable with the correct connectors.
3 Benefits Of Mobile Ham Radio
1. First of all, Mobile Ham Radio has a better range than your typical handheld or stationary 2m/70cm radio. It is because mobile radios are usually highly powerful, have better antennas mounted on them and you are not limited to just 1 watt of power like with typical HTs.
2 . Secondly, it should be obvious that your antenna being outside the vehicle makes stronger signals than putting it inside your car. This is why people who use their HTs in public areas should always use an external antenna if they want the best range possible.
3. Lastly, if there was a natural disaster or another emergency, a Mobile Radio operation can come to the rescue. Even though most stations are required to have their licenses renewed once every 10 years by now, their knowledge of Ham Radio principles can still help others at a moment’s notice.
We hope this post gave you some insight into the top 10 mobile ham radio systems for your vehicle. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, we’ve given you a few of our favorites to hopefully help guide your decision on which system will work best with your needs and budget. Now that you know about these options, it should be easier than ever to find the perfect gear for use in any situation! Which model do you like most? Let us know by commenting below.