Hi. My name is Judy and I am new to this Forum. At my desk at work I have a RELM base station and my work guys have RELM radios and we have both Simplex and multiple Repeater capability. (M&O Division at a public school district). I do keep a RELM handheld at home in case of off-hour emergencies. Also, I was a police/fire dispatcher in the 70’s, so I am comfortable with radios. But using them and knowing anything about them are two totally different things, as you obviously know.
I have read both recent reviews by jwilkers on the Midland GXT1000 and the Cobra CXR900. Both radios sound like they are nice.
A two-way radio set is something I have wanted to purchase for years, but never really looked into it. Yesterday, in anticipation of buying myself a pair of two-way radios, I purchased a FCC license so I could legally use GMRS if necessary. The RELMS are a little out of my price range and I will not use my work handheld for personal use.
Enough about me. Back to radios.
Between the Midland GXT1000 and the Cobra CXR900 FRS/GMRS Radio - is there one that you like better or would recommend?
I live rurally in the desert. Most of us live on 2-1/2 to 5 to 10 acre parcels. I would probably use my radios for line-of-sight with a neighbor or two - maybe I could even talk them into getting the same model so we could all communicate in an emergency - either personal or community. We live in earthquake area in Southern California - home of the 1992 Landers 7.6 earthquake.
I also would like to have a two-way radio set for travel and vacations. Cell phone coverage at my house and in my area is not always reliable unless I twirl around 3 times and stand on my right foot with my cell phone and head tilted to the south. And even then I break up and it is difficult for people to hear me.
I know that we have ham radio clubs locally who have their private repeaters somewhere, but I’m not sure where.
p.s. jwilkers I have been reading your reviews of the various radios and for an inexperience lay-person as myself, you make it pretty easy to understand.
Thanks! I think I’ll go with the Cobra, then. The greater range and battery life is more important to me than durability and water resistance. It’s pretty dry in the desert and I won’t be going on any dirt bike or dune buggy rides.
Thanks for helping me with those differences which allowed me to make my decision. I feel comfortable going with the Cobra now.
Power output: (ERP)
2.24 Watts High-GMRS
.49 Watts Low, FRS
so the Midland actually have higher output power?
or in midlands review was mentioned wattage which is going from transmitter to antenna , not actually from antenna in the air?
I would like longer range. And if they are the same i would take midland.
But it seems like cobras have longer range, is that true?
What is your advice?
yeah… but i thought that your reviews were based on approximately same conditions.
also i’ve seen review of Midland GXT 850 with “maximum power allowed by law” statement also(in yor review 1.73 wt). Marketing, heh?
Doesnt all the Midland series 800-900-1000 have a same transmitter(hardware)? (please anwser on this, if you can)
I almost decided to buy Cobras(based on your review, i hope its not “marketing” type:). Because you claim Cobras have longer range than Midlands in real world.
Tired to read forums to see which one has longer range,(there is not much info) whole week long…
The power=range thing is one that is a lot more complicated than most think. In the most general terms a radio with the maximum of 5 watts is going to have more usable range on average compared to a similar radio that is one or two watts.
However, the quality of the components, the antenna, and the efficiency of the design are what really determines range. If you look at a lot of commercial grade radios they tend to be 2-4 watts while having the same or greater range and clarity of many 5 watts radios. It is about how well it was engineered.
So putting the maximum power in a low cost radio is how they are able to sell them for a low price while still having acceptable range. It is like putting a very powerful engine in an otherwise average car to make it fast. It works, is much more affordable, but will not compete as well with something built with every component engineered to the fullest.
A few like Cobra are putting a bit more effort into the engineering of the radios, so what you get are comparable to other radios though they have less “power”. So simple answer: power=range, but well engineered radios can get the same from less or do even better.
so(continuing to irritate you), why Cobra still claiming “maximum power allowed by law” in its specs?
if maximum is 5 not 2 like they have.
cobras have 3.5 wt advertised :))) why?
i sent letter to Cobra, will see what they will respond
thanks guys, your help really helps