Although CB radios are not as widely used as they previously were, this form of communication is still utilized by many people across the country. Some of the most common examples are truckers, civilian groups that are trained as first responders, and those who frequently travel to remote areas that are not covered by cell phone companies.
No matter why you’re searching for a CB radio, it is important to know exactly what features you should be paying attention to. This is especially the case when these types of radio are not the cheapest of communication options and the fact they could possibly be used in emergency situations.
To make the search much easier we have collected together the top ten available CB radios and all the advice that you will need to make the final choice.
The Main Features
Here are some of the most important parts of the CB radio that you should pay attention to when looking over the list of the top ten products.
- Noise Filter. For any CB radio, it is crucial that background noise is filtered out and that only the user speaking is transmitted. This is especially the case when the CB is being used in noisy environments such as in a moving vehicle or in a windy location.
While the best CB radio will always have this feature they do differ in terms of the effectiveness of the noise filter. The best way to be able to see this is if you turn to trusted reviews that provide a balanced judgment on this feature of a specific CB radio.
- Size and Mounted-Feature. Our list consists only of mounted CB radios, there are however also handhelds. While it is clear that there are various situations that each one would be sorted, this is often where buyers make the most mistakes.
Make absolutely sure that the CB radio is compatible with the mounting system that you will place in your vehicle or that the handheld device will not add too much bulk to your overall gear.
- PA Capability. This is one of the more specific features but really is useful for certain users. Being able to use the CB as a PA system will mean you can use it for distress calls and at various events. It should be noted, however, that using a CB as a PA requires a horn, and this piece of equipment is rarely included in the original product bundle.
Pro Tip – It is important to ignore any claims on radio range or watts of power. As required by law, every CB radio has 4 watts of power and an almost equal range. You should, therefore, choose a CB radio from its other differentiating features.
Choosing the Best CB Radio
While the previously mentioned features are certainly important, there is one aspect that should be considered above all else. CB radios tend to be used on the go or in more chaotic situations and therefore should be easy to use at all times.
This usability will make sure that it is always reliable when you need to use the CB and that you will not present a danger to others whilst using it.
Here are the best ways to judge the usability of the best CB radio:
- Backlight and Glowing. To aid the use of the CB radio in the dark you should look for the product that has had intelligently designed lights included on the control panel.
- Channel Scanning. Several of the models on our list will have automatic scanning built into the system. This means that you will not have to manually search through all of the available channels for activity as the radio will do this for you.
- Controls. The interface of the CB radio should be large and easy to use. Not only should everything be simple to identify when on the move but they should be sturdy enough to deal with being roughly poked and prodded.
Top 3 CB Radios Reviews
The Uniden PRO505XL is an incredibly compact and durable CB radio. It comes with all of the features and performance that you would expect from the best CB radio and then some. You have access to emergency channels, a public address function that lets you connect to speakers as well as the ability to check the strength of the signals being accessed.
The LCD display screen is easy to see in the daytime or at night. The display shows the current channel, volume, and the other features in use too so you always know exactly what is going on with your radio.
The speakers on this system are great but the option to use the radio to amplify announcements is a great addition. Considering the compact size and the low price, you really can’t go wrong with this device.
The most appealing thing about the Cobra 29 LX is the fact that it has a huge multi-color display that gives you all the information you could possibly need to know about how the radio is functioning. This display can be set to one of four colors based on your preferences or to match the night display in your car.
This radio scans through 40 channels to search for transmissions and then it will stop when there is activity. This is a great feature if you just like to browse through what is happening on the radio without having to manually go through each channel yourself.
This is one of the CB radios that also have the weather channel and a PA option, which is always good to have on hand. The entire build of this device is really superior and more than worth the higher cost.
The Uniden BEARCAT is one of the higher-end CB radios on the market but it delivers better performance and has great features so it comes with a higher price tag for very good reason. The first thing that you will notice about this radio is how sleek and simple it looks.
The display tells you everything you need to know and the dials keep you in control. There are even 7 colors for you to choose from for the display. The clarity and the signal strength with this radio are things that other models cannot compete with.
You will also get the noise-canceling microphone, mounting bracket, and power cord, which is everything you need to set this radio up and get listening or talking right away. Set up with this model is super easy and straightforward. It is practically ready to use right out of the box.