Midland GXT1000 Review

Midland GXT1000 Review

Power 5.33 Watts (ERP) GMRS
.42 watts (ERP) FRS

These ratings are identical to the 2008 Midland GXT900

An FCC license is required for use on all GMRS frequencies. No license is required
on FRS-only channels.

Features of the GXT 1000 include:

High, Medium and Low power settings for flexibility and battery life.
CTCSS and DCS for interference protection.
Group setting and Caller Identification for selective calling within a group.
NOAA weather radio.
Channel Scan.
“Whisper” mode for increased microphone sensitivity when talking quietly
Waterproof design. JIS standards for water resistance.
Increased communications capacity via CTCSS and frequency settings for 50 “virtual channels”
“Vibrate Mode” to allow for silent paging, or calling in noisy areas where you cannot hear.
Dual channel watch function.
End of transmission tone for ease of communication.

This model looks and feels like most of the recent models Midland has released over
the years. It has a hefty look and feel, yet is generally light in weight. It fits easily
in the hand and the controls are easily accessible and functional. The case is
attractive and functional looking. It is definitely not a children’s toy.

With all the functions, the radio is “menu driven”. This means channel selection and
all other functions require the use of the menu system. The “menu” button gives access to
all the FRS/GMRS functions. Weather radio functions are accessed via the same button by
holding down the menu button until the WX function appears.

The CTCSS and DCS tones are combined into one menu and setting, rather than
two separate classifications. This makes it more handy for those not familiar
with these type systems. These fall under the “group” mode settings which can further be
modified to call specific radios by assigning a unique ID for each radio, thus allowing one
radio out of a group to be called, rather than all radios.

You need to read and understand the manual to become familiar with the functions and how to use them.
This radio is a complex and flexible piece of equipment and requires proper study to use properly.

** Explaining the 50 “channels”:

These radios utilize the combined 22 frequencies of the Family Radio Service (FRS) and General
Mobile Radio Service (GMRS). Regardless of channel selection, they are using only the 22 frequencies
authorized in these two services.

A system, known as Continuous Coded Squelch System (CTCSS), also incorrectly
referred to in some cases as “Privacy Codes”, allows these “extra channels”.

On most cases, a user must manually select a CTCSS tone. With the GXT 900/950 series,
these are “hard-coded” into the channel selection. You could be on channel 42, which
is actually the same exact frequency as channel 22. (this is an example only, I have NOT
analyzed the exact frequency/CTCSS tone combination.) The only difference is that the
channel selector automatically assigns a CTCSS tone. This is why you cannot manually assign
a “Privacy code” for any channel above 22. If you were to have the correct frequency/CTCSS tone
set on the first 22 channels, you could exactly match the “extra channels”.

All in all, this does simplify matters. You need not assign a CTCSS tone if the radio does it for you.
It does complicate matters if you only want to use license free FRS-only channels.

Performance Evaluations:

Audio Quality:

Transmit audio was robust. Whisper mode was interesting, as it really amplified
quiet “whispered”… Even using a normal voice, it wouldn’t overdrive the transmitter, as I feared.
Audio reproduction was good and accurate. Use of whisper mode with a headset dramatically
improved reception, as it increased microphone sensitivity as well as gain.
Receive Volume was good, except in the noisier areas, like one would expect. With a headset,
this problem is circumvented.

Communications Ranges:

Mobile to mobile: Exceeded 1/2 mile on freeways. (may be more… test vehicles never exceeded this distance)

Indoor Use: Was able to communicate effectively in and out of
a 3 story hotel, moving in lobby, restaurant areas, etc, with ZERO noise.

House to car: .82 miles

Person to person ouitdoor: 1.25 miles

House to person outdors: 1.25 miles

These ranges were tested in suburban environment with houses, trees, etc.
Ranges may exceed test distance as I used familiar areas and set boundaries.

I was impressed with the ranges in our recent hotel visit. We had ZERO noise,
which is a first on vacations at this hotel. Last year’s Cobra couldn’t even do this.

Battery life: During trip I never had to recharge… During power on test, batteries exceeded
8 hours, which I benchmark as a typical “day of use”

Water resistance: Poolside and in humid areas indicated not problems. I do not want
to deliberately dunk a radio. I have too much respect for communications equipment.

Final thoughts:

What I liked:

The end of transmission tone (AKA Roger beep) is simple… no annoying tone, a comfortable
tone. It is used when the transmitting station unkeys also. Nice touch.

During our vacation, we never lost communication. This was VITAL, considering we had ZERO
cell service in the area. A lifesaver.

The radios are durable and well built. Not surprising, since Midland has some great commercial

Sound quility was very good. It was brought to my attention that there have been some issues in
that ares in the past. It appears Midland addressed these. This is important, as many “design flaws”
in consumer radios are ignored by many manufacturers.


From what I experienced, really just a little confusing at times on menus. Once you get
used to them, they are fine. Remember, a full-featured radio has to have some complications.

Recommended. They are very good radios.

Acquired a GMRS license then ordered a pair of these and a motorcycle headset.

Hey, first post…

Just a quick question. I ordered a set of these and I’m assuming that no FCC license is required to use any of the channels in Canada? or are they regulated here too?

Hey, first post…

Just a quick question. I ordered a set of these and I’m assuming that no FCC license is required to use any of the channels in Canada? or are they regulated here too?

No license is required in Canada for any channel. The FCC is the regulatory body in the USA. Industry Canada (IC) regulates communications in Canada.

With the GXT1000, I was able to get 1.0 mile range from car to house in a suburban environment on level ground. Costco, Winco, Circuit City, and many other buildings and houses were blocking the line of sight.

I also had good luck with this radio and the Midland closed face motorcycle helmet headset in a desert dirt bike race. I was able to communicate to the pits and to another rider loud and clear when within range.

sorry - should have started new thread. Will do so.


Hello there,

anybody knows about the actual height (antenna included ) of those radios?

Also if the microphones included in most offers are good enough…


You need to elaborate on the Microphone question… with the info you have given, I have no clue.

The radios are 8 inches tall, including antenna.

If you would like to review a product and have it added to this section, post your review in the general discussion forum and PM a staff member to approve it.

A question about the GXT1000VP4 regarding the frequencies it can transmit and the 50 available channels:

You mention that the radio only transmits on the 22 GMRS/FRS frequencies, regardless of the channel number and uses combinations of the CTCSS/DCS coding to establish these channels. However, in my testing I find that this is true for only a few of the channels above #22.

For instance, channels #23-26 are actually clones of channels 1, 3, 5 and 7; however channels #27-29 and #31-33 are transmitting on the following frequencies:
27 = 467.9000
28 = 467.9500
29 = 468.0000
31 = 467.9375
32 = 467.9875
33 = 468.0375

Channels #34-37 are clones of FRS channels 8, 10, 12 and 14; then channels #38-47 are transmitting on the following frequencies:
38 = 467.9250
39 = 467.9750
40 = 468.0250
41 = 468.0750
42 = 467.9125
43 = 467.9625
44 = 468.0125
45 = 468.0625
46 = 467.9000
47 = 467.9500

And channels #48-50 are clones of GMRS channels 19, 21 and 2.

This GMRS/FRS radio appears to be transmitting on the GMRS/FRS frequencies, and also on frequencies that are in the Special Emergency Radio Service and the Emergency Medical Radio Service. Is this right? Maybe I’m missing something on the FCC website, but how can this radio be legally transmitting above 467.7125 MHz?

They can’t be. Re-check your tests. You may be getting “images” rather than receiving on the correct frequency.


Perhaps I don’t yet understand the “channel/privacy code thing” (I’m kinda new to this whole thing sill) but on Midland’s site for this radio they show the base frequencies they employ. :slight_smile:

The highest frequency is channel 14 @ 467,712,500 Hz. If this channel were to then be assigned sub-channel 38 (CTCSS Privacy code 38) @ 250.3 Hz, then the highest frequency that this radio will communicate on is 467,712,750.3 Hz. Is my understanding correct or am I out in left-field? If true, then I’m not sure where frequencies as high as 467.900MHz are coming from. :confused:


That is incorrect. If your channel 467.7215 Mhz, has a “privacy code”, then you are still transmitting on 467.7125 Mhz.

All the so called “privacy codes” do is keep your radio quiet when someone isn’t using the proper “code” (which is actually a subadudible tone, or subaudible numeric sequence).

ANYONE can HEAR you, all they need to do is hae no “code” set. It is only for those communicating.

This subaudible code is transmitted with your signal, to allow your squelch only to open when a corresponding “code” is heard in your signal.

Really, there is no privacy at all.

Hope this helps.

Hie… question, with this GXT1000 can i operate with Yaesu FT-1807M, i mean can i establish communication of my mobile car Yaesu with GX1000 midland? thanks for your answer and have a happy new year

That is not possible. Those radios MUST transmit in the FRS and GMRS frequencies. Perhaps your measurements are being confused by “images”…

Thanks for the review. I’m really considering the 1050 radio for hunting. Reading your review, I am three steps closer to buying the radios. Did you just use the included headset/mic or did you use another after market setup? I’m thinking one of the “in the ear” head sets or maybe a throat mic. The whisper mode is what really attracts me to this radio set, but the other features seem to be solid. Thanks again!

It has been so long I forget :slight_smile: The “whisper mode” is like a mic gain control. It does work pretty good.

I have four GXT650’s. I needed another radio as our group was expanding. 650’s were no longer available, so I looked into GXT1000’s. Midland said all features were compatible. I received the radios and programmed them, including silent operation and vibrate alert. What I found was that a 650 alerting a 1000 will cause the 1000 to emit an audible alert, even if both radios are set to silent operation. I also found that the 1000 alerting a 650 will cause the 650 to produce a audible alert, even when both radios are set to silent vibrate. Midland denies any knowledge of this. Please keep in mind if you plan on mixing radios. We use them for hunting, so the noise is an issue. If anyone knows a way to silence these radios, please respond.

FCC License is required in Canada