The 6 Best Long Range Walkie-Talkies For Powerfully Distant Communication


Here we are, about to dive headfirst into the unsung world of long-range walkie-talkies. It’s easy to let these simple yet wonderfully practical devices slip under the radar in a world increasingly dominated by smartphones, apps, and whatever new-fangled gizmos Silicon Valley is cooking up this week.

But much like a sports fan might relish the charm of a vintage baseball game on a grainy black-and-white T.V., there’s something satisfyingly straightforward about the reliable, no-nonsense functionality of a long-range walkie-talkie.

In an age where the digital sphere is perpetually updating, upgrading, and generally making it harder to ‘switch off,’ walkie-talkies serve as a delightful antithesis to our technologically saturated lives. They don’t demand your attention with a barrage of notifications, and there’s a certain thrill to their instantaneous, direct line of communication – not to mention the touch of nostalgia they bring.

So, as we hunker down and get ready to assess the top contenders in this surprisingly competitive field, you might find yourself reminded of the simple joy of pressing a button, speaking into the device, and hearing a voice on the other end.

No filters, no text bubbles, just good, old-fashioned talk. Who knew that in the brave new world of the 2020s, something as simple as a walkie-talkie could feel so revolutionary? But then again, isn’t it often the most unassuming of tools that make the most significant difference?

Whether you’re preparing for a wilderness adventure, organizing a significant event, or just gearing up for some apocalypse-style scenario (because, hey, it’s always good to be prepared), here’s our rundown of the best value and top-tier walkie-talkies on the market today. Let’s dive in, shall we?

TL:dr, My Top Picks

  1. Best Overall – Midland 50 Channel G.M.R.S. Two-Way Radio: A consistent and powerful long-range walkie-talkie with 50 G.M.R.S. channels, JIS4 waterproof protection, and easy voice & sound activation. It offers a reach of up to 36 miles under perfect conditions, but 1-2 miles is more realistic in city conditions.
  2. Best for Features – Retevis RT86 Two Way Radios: Walkie-talkie with a built-in flashlight and long-range, perfect for business needs. It has excellent sound quality and is easily compatible with various models.
  3. Budget Option – Luiton Walkie Talkies Voice Scrambler: Known for its durability, functions, and sleek design, this military-quality dustproof device offers up to 10 miles of reach and 16 memory channels.
  4. Runner Up – Retevis RT22 Two Way Radio: A long-range walkie-talkie with 30 G.M.R.S. channels and 35 menu function settings. Its side button switches to weather channels which is very helpful during outdoor activities.
  5. Runner Up – Olywiz Walkie Talkies: Palm-sized lightweight device with a built-in L.E.D. flashlight, suitable for field survival activities, road trips, and hiking camping sessions. Offers up to 3 miles of reach.
  6. Runner Up – Baofeng Walkie Talkies: Long-range rechargeable walkie-talkies, perfect for various activities like hiking, camping, and biking. It can function even in environments with obstructions.

Let’s compare the top 3 a bit:

Feature Midland 50 Channel G.M.R.S. Two-Way Radio Retevis RT86 Two Way Radios Luiton Walkie Talkies Voice Scrambler
Maximum Range Up to 36 miles Not specified Up to 3.6 miles
Typical City Range 1-2 miles Can penetrate buildings and steel structures Not specified
Number of Channels 50 Preset with 50 CTCSS and 232 DCS 16
Waterproof Rating JIS4 Dustproof Not specified
Extra Features Voice & sound activation V.O.X. hands-free, large L.E.D. flashlight, shatterproof active view display, emergency alarm function V.O.X. hands-free, Voice Scrambler, low battery alarm
Compatibility with Other Models Yes Yes, with a firmware update Not specified
Design Standard Heavy-duty, shock-proof design with stout antenna Slim and thin with an anti-skip pattern
Battery Life Not specified 16-24 hours (2600mAh battery) All day working and one week standby (1500mAh battery)
R.F. Power Not specified Not specified Less than 5W
Antenna impedance Not specified Not specified 50Ω
Transmission current Not specified Not specified Less than 1.2A
Receiver sensitivity Not specified Not specified -122dBm (12dB S.I.N.A.D.)
Other Separate charging base, compatible with Mac and Windows systems Belt clip for easy carry

OK, let’s analyze this a bit…

Our contenders are Midland, Retevis RT86, and Luiton, which, if we were talking about an N.B.A. match-up, would be like having the Lakers, the Celtics, and the Knicks on the court. They all bring a lot to the table, and each has its flair, but let’s see who’s hitting three-pointers and who’s fumbling in the paint.

The Midland 50 Channel G.M.R.S. Two-Way Radio is coming out strong from the get-go. It’s like the LeBron James of walkie-talkies – robust, reliable, and has the kind of range that makes you question the laws of physics.

Claiming up to 36 miles, this bad boy can reach across the cityscape, much like how LeBron can seemingly cover the entire court in a single bound. But remember, folks; the keyword is ‘up to.’ It’s more like a decent 1-2 mile pass in real-world conditions – still, nothing to sneeze at. Plus, with waterproof features, it’s the type to make the shot even in the pouring rain.

On the other hand, the Retevis RT86 is like the Kyrie Irving of walkie-talkies. It’s got a bag full of tricks up its sleeve – a hands-free operation, a built-in L.E.D. flashlight, and an emergency alarm function. It’s a clear contender with its uncanny ability to penetrate through buildings and steel structures. Pesky obstacles won’t stop this one; it’s got the agility and finesse to weave through the defense. With its hardcore design and stout antenna, it’s not only flash and dash; it can take a hit and keep ticking.

Now, the Luiton, it’s like the Julius Randle of walkie-talkies. It might not have the household name recognition of the other two but don’t count it out just yet. It has a solid mid-range game with up to 3.6 miles range. The design is slim and thin, and its power consumption is on the lower side – it’s that efficient player every team needs. Add a Voice Scrambler feature to that, and you have a player that can make secret plays and keep the opposing team guessing.

These are some top-tier walkie-talkies, each with its own unique skill set. But who’s your M.V.P.? Are you going for Midland’s long-range game, Retevis’ feature-heavy approach, or Luiton’s budget-friendly performance? That, my friends, is as difficult as picking the G.O.A.T. of basketball. And just as with the N.B.A., in the world of walkie-talkies, it ultimately comes down to what you value most in your game.

How Are Long Range Walkie Talkies Different from Regular Ones?

Long-range walkie-talkies function just as they sound – suitable for long-distance communication. The radios cover a maximum long distance in ideal conditions or work at that specific distance when no obstructions exist. Obstructions can be in the form of buildings, trees, or even mountains that can interfere. Regular walkie-talkies do not cover such a long-range and do not use such advanced technology in their functioning.

Do You Need A License?

According to the Solid Signal blog, “If you are using a walkie-talkie labeled “FRS/GMRS” or one labeled “G.M.R.S.” then yes, you do need an F.C.C. license.” F.R.S., or Family Radio Service, channels, are free to use, but G.M.R.S. (General Mobile Radio Service) walkie-talkies require licensure. You’ll have to pay some cash for the fee and file F.C.C. forms 159 and 605 to get certified.

Understanding F.R.S. (Family Radio Service)

longshore man on walkie talkie

F.R.S., or Family Radio Service, is a famous private two-way, short-distance data and voice communication service. It plays a significant role in group and family communication within a neighborhood or during outings. F.R.S. channels are used for two-way communication with the help of handheld radios or devices that are like walkie-talkies. Many other services allow such communication as G.M.R.S. or General Mobile Radio Service.

This is a license-free radio system, and radios use narrow-band frequency modulation, N.B.F.M. All equipment used in Family Radio Service needs to be regulated and approved by the concerned authorities.

Understanding G.M.R.S. ( General Mobile Radio Service)

G.M.R.S., or General Mobile Radio Service, is another licensed radio service for two-way voice communication suitable for short distances. It uses handheld devices like walkie-talkies or mobile radios for the purpose. G.M.R.S. is available to any individual for use in short-range communication. G.M.R.S. licensees can establish repeaters that help in extending the range of communication. One G.M.R.S. repeater can be linked with any other repeater.

G.M.R.S. is generally allotted 30 frequency channels. These are usually around MHz and 467 MHz. These are also divided into 14 interstitial channels and 16 main channels. Licensees can use the eight main 462 MHz channels for simple communication.

The Best Long-Range G.M.R.S. Walkie Talkies

*Many walkie-talkies promise over 30 miles of reach, but that’s under optimal conditions with an obvious line of sight. 1-2 miles is realistic if you’re in the city.

Best Overall: The Midland Waterproof Walkie Talkie

Bestseller No. 1
Midland 50 Channel GMRS Two-Way Radio - Long Range Walkie Talkie with 142 Privacy Codes, SOS Siren, and NOAA Weather Alerts and Weather Scan (Black/Silver, Pair Pack)
  • 2-Way Radios - These Walkie-Talkies Feature 50 Gmrs (General Mobile Radio Service) Channels, Along With Channel Scan To Check For Activity. The Jis4 Waterproof Protection Prevents Splashing Water From Having Any Harmful Effect On It (Splash Resistant)

The Midland Waterproof walkie-talkie is a consistent and powerful choice for long-range communication.

These walkie-talkies are available with 50 G.M.R.S. channels with a channel scan feature. The device is available with JIS4 waterproof protection that helps to prevent water splashes that can damage the walkie-talkie. Thus, it is a splashproof device offering a decent range of communication.

Whether you are using it – during hiking, camping, or Overlanding, this walkie-talkie is the perfect device that helps you stay in touch with your family and friends. It is a long-range water-resistant walkie-talkie with a reach of up to 36 miles. The device offers easy voice & sound activation transmission with nine sensitivity levels. It is available with a rechargeable battery pack.

  • Number of batteries: 5 Lithium-ion batteries
  • Noise Level: 60 dB
  • Channels: 30
  • Tuner Technology: G.M.R.S.
  • Temperature Range: -10-50 Degrees Celsius

Mile Range: 36 miles under perfect conditions; 1-2 miles more realistically

With Flashlight: The Retevis Flashlight Walkie Talkie

This walkie-talkie is perfect for meeting your business’s needs because it has a more extended range than usual. The device comes with a built-in flashlight. This handheld radio can connect to the base station. The maximum transmission capacity can be expanded without worrying about dense forests and mountains. The device has advanced voice activation, providing a smooth hands-free experience whenever required.

The sound quality of the device is excellent. Audio is loud and clear in most noisy environments. This walkie-talkie is easily compatible with various models and is suitable for use with different walkie-talkies. Each device has a built-in 2000mah battery, which is just enough to meet the members’ requirements. Charging is easy with its multi-function charging method – thus, a USB cable can also be used.

It is the perfect device to carry in dark and dingy regions with dim lighting. Its built-in flashlight offers the much-needed support to move through comfortably in darkness.

  • Number of batteries: 5 Lithium-ion batteries
  • Noise Level: 60 dB
  • Channels: 30
  • Tuner Technology: G.M.R.S.
  • Temperature Range: -10-50 Degrees Celsius

Mile Range: 36 (1-2 miles in the city)

Video Overview

Budget Option: The Luiton

Offered by Luiton, this walkie-talkie is best known for its durability, functions, and innovative, sleek design. This is a military-quality dustproof device with a built-in anti-interference feature. It is an ultra-thin device that is compact and convenient to carry, suitable for hands-free communication.

It is available with a 16-memory channel, making it easy to find a track. The device is compatible with any other radio and can be used regardless of the brand. It offers a micro-USB charging feature. The device provides excellent range and can reach up to 10 miles, depending on weather conditions and terrain.

The package includes two radios, two charging cables, two batteries, two belt clips, and an optional charger base. This is the perfect device for various outdoor activities such as hiking, hunting, and camping.

  • Frequency Range: 400 – 470 MHz, 400 – 520 MHz
  • Voltage: 3.7 volts
  • Channels: 16
  • Tuner Technology: UHF
  • Dustproof: Yes

Mile Range: Up to 10 miles (.5 miles in the city)

Video Overview

Runners Up

The Retevis

SaleBestseller No. 1
Retevis RT22 Two Way Radio Long Range Rechargeable,Portable 2 Way Radio,Handsfree Walkie Talkie for Adults Cruises Hiking (4 Pack)
  • Pocket size and the light weight is a huge advantage; lightweight; thin like a cellphone; easy to carry

The Retevis is a long-range walkie-talkie that is easily operated and highly functional. It comes with 30 G.M.R.S. channels. This walkie-talkie has many unique features, including its 35 menu function settings. With so many menu function settings, it becomes easy to operate this walkie-talkie. Other features include the alarm mode, PTT-ID mode, V.O.X., and many others. The device is also available with its volume and channel adjustment knob. Thus, it is now possible to adjust channels and volume without checking the walkie-talkie.

One of the most valuable features is the side button to switch weather channels. Users need to know about weather conditions, especially on hiking or camping trips. Such features allow the user to know about the weather at any time. Thus, with prior knowledge of the weather, changing plans is more accessible. This is an excellent option when looking for 2-way radios for different purposes.

  • Number of batteries: 2 Lithium-ion batteries required.
  • Water Resistant: No
  • Channels: 30
  • Tuner Technology: G.M.R.S.
  • Noise Level: 60 dB

Mile Range: 1 – 1.5 miles

Video Overview

The Olywiz

Bestseller No. 1
Olywiz Walkie Talkies for Adults Long Range with Earpiece, 2 Way Radio Rechargeable 1800mAH 16CH Walky Talky Loud&Clear USB Dual Desktop Charger 2 Pack HTD826
  • Simple & Compact: Talk by the Olywiz walkie talkies radios with a push to talk button, work out of box with quality earpieces. Easy to communicate with other 2-way radios or mobile radio by programming to the same frequency. Note: Please program your frequency according to FCC Rules.

The Olywiz is a palm-size lightweight device that is suitable for almost everyone. Children to seniors can use the device as its primary functions are easy to use. There is a built-in led flashlight in the device. Thus, it is easy to use in dim light or in an emergency. This walkie-talkie is ideal for field survival activities, road trips, and hiking camping sessions. Every walkie-talkie comes with an earpiece. Hence, users do not have to buy the earpiece separately.

The device offers a long talking range with its stable high-gain antenna. It can reach up to 3 miles without obstruction or in areas with less congestion. Radio transmissions usually depend on factors like weather; if everything is clear, the maximum range can be optimum. The device is perfect for warehouses, schools, supermarkets, restaurants, commercial construction zones, and for security purposes.

  • Number of batteries: 1 Lithium-ion battery required.
  • Water Resistant: Yes
  • Channels: 16
  • Tuner Technology: UHF
  • Low Battery Alert: Yes

Mile Range: 3 miles

Video Overview

The Baofeng

Bestseller No. 1
BAOFENG UV-5R Ham Radio Kits 8W High Power Dual Band Baofeng Radio Handheld Radio Long Range Walkie Talkie for Adult with AR-771 Antenna, Programming Cable etc,2pack
  • 【Professional Baofeng UV-5R Full Set】All You Need Is In One Box!Package contents include:8W Portable Radio ,Baofeng Original Antenna ,AR-771 Soft Antenna(high gain Antenna can boost signal ) ,PL2303 Programming Cable,1800mAh Li-ion Battery(long standby),US Base Charger , Belt clip ,The sling ,Earpiece,User's manual

The Baofeng is known for its classic design. The device is easy to read because of its tri-cooler display. Its basic settings can be accessed using the keypad and the menu. There are nine sensitivity levels for easy hands-free operation. The device comes with 128 preset channels and 104 DCS digital-coded squelch choices.

Users looking forward to advanced choices can use the advanced settings that offer potent options. For this, the device needs to be connected to a computer. Additional NOAA Alert feature is one advanced and necessary feature. This feature automatically scans and sends weather alerts to the user, sending signals about severe weather ahead. It is one of the most reliable options during inclement weather and when cellular towers are overloaded.

  • Number of batteries: 2 Lithium-ion batteries
  • Battery Life: 60 hours
  • Channels: 128
  • Tuner Technology: G.M.R.S.
  • Water Resistant: No

Mile Range: 3-6 miles

Video Overview

With so many top-quality walkie-talkies available, buy the one with the needed features. Do not forget to check details like transmission range, extended range, LCD details, optimal conditions for performance, how well it works in severe weather, and its price. Buy a smart, simple, reliable, high-performance, and durable device that meets your needs.

A walkie-talkie, formally referred to as handheld transceivers, refers to a handheld two-way radio receiver developed during World War II.

The walkie-talkies come in handy when keeping in touch in an environment with virtually no mobile network coverage. Not only can you communicate with family and friends but also a wide selection of people within your selected program.

Many people have asked if there exists a walkie-talkie that can operate for a range of 100 miles. This is a good question which we’re going to answer today- remember to check out our article on extending a walkie talkie’s range.

So, how long range can they go- 100 miles?

If you’re looking for a traditional walkie-talkie that can transmit for this range, then I am sorry to disappoint; they don’t exist.

Typically long-range walkie-talkies that can output a power transmission of 5-watts can give a maximum of 50 miles or more, but so much of this depends on the locations and the conditions of the surrounding areas.

There is touchable evidence to prove some walkie-talkies can achieve close to 100 miles. Still, in such circumstances, the users must have been to almost perfect conditions such as hilltop to hilltop, which can’t be replicated when working in an urban or outdoor area.

If you’re looking for some long range walkies, these are some solid options:

There is a wide selection of walkie-talkies in the market with numerous features, a recommendable amount of power output, quality antennas, and above all, a cost-effective price that can all get you close to the 100-mile mark.

This makes the selection of a convenient option a hard choice. Worry no more since we brought you a selection of longer-range options that can almost get to 100 miles, but not quite.

1. Cobra RX680 2 Watt Rugged Walkie Talkies

Suppose you’re looking for an exceptional walkie-talkie that can get you close to the 100-mile range under considerably favorable conditions.

In that case, you’ll never go wrong with the Cobra RX680 2 Watt Rugged walkie-talkie.

This brand has been widely used and commended for its long-range performance and a ton of other exceptional features, including over 2500 channel combinations, 120 privacy codes, and inbuilt weather alert features.

2. Motorola VX-261- D0 5 Watt Business Use Radio

This brand of walkie-talkie will never disappoint when it comes to long-range performances. Since its inception, this walkie-talkie has undergone several alterations, especially for its general build quality and weatherproofing.

It also offers its users several frequencies of up to 16 channels to choose from by working through dual bands, UHF and VHF.

3. DEWALT DXFRS800 Heavy Duty Walkie Talkies

For building sites, business, and commercial settings with several users, the DEWALT DXFRS800 is the ideal choice. These walkie-talkies boast an IP67 waterproof and shock proofs for extra durability.

They also have an impressive range of communication, a wide range of channels, and plenty of communicative flexibility. It also happens to come with a holster that can swivel up to 180 degrees, thus ensuring a more customized storing position.

4. Midland GXT1000VP 4 2-Way Radios

This is also another elite long-range 2-way walkie-talkie that comes at an affordable price. They come with a convenient charging dock for ensuring that your batteries are powered up, an adapter for charging them in your car, 50 Gmrss channels with 142 privacy codes, and above all, they can transmit an SOS signal and receive NOAA channels in case of emergencies.

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