Midland GXT850 Review
FCC ID: MMAGXT850
Power Output ERP:
1.6379 Watts (GMRS High)
0.278 Watts GMRS/Med
0.2035 Watts (FRS/Low)
Advertised power output 5 watts
This radio had a hefty look and feel. It is advertised as being waterproof.
I did not test this.These radio have both CTCSS and DCS coded squelch
to assist in interference protection.
Sound Quality: The radio had a nich hefty audio quality. Volume was
sufficient for all but the noisiest environments.
Ease of operation: I considered the menu layout to be confusing at first.
Setting CTCSS and DCS codes was a bit more complicated than I would
have liked to see. Nonetheless, after learning the functions with
the help of the manual, I was able to navigate easily. CTCSS and DCS tones/codes are listed in the manual.
Advanced Features: These radios have an advanced selective calling system. It allows each user to input an
ID tag and selectively call individual radios, or the entire group. Each radio is set with an
ID tag and a group number. This system is effective with large groups and wasn’t tested
in a group mode. It worked great with the two units I had. At first, it was a bit complicated; but we got it down after
a little while. These radios offer Voice Operated Transmit (VOX) for hands-free operation. A silent “vibrate” function is also available.
Scan function: If you set a CTCSS/DCS code, and then scan, the scan function “remembers” these codes and when it scans that channel, it will scan the pre-set code too. This is useful if your group operates on different CTCSS/DCS coded channels. These radios will not display, or scan a CTCSS/DCS code if they are not pre-set. As such the radio isn’t good for “finding” codes.
Ranges: (Test area was in a suburban environment. Your experiences may vary based on terrain and environment)
(Squelch enabled, Maximum effective range)
Car to car: .75 miles
Car to house: 1.18 miles
Person to person outdoors: 1.55 miles
Person to house: 1.18 miles
Battery Life: Charge life of supplied battery pack is effective for
normal use all day. Battery did not indicate loss of power during
test period. Supplied charger charges both the supplied pack, and your own
Final Comments: I enjoyed these radios. Admittedly, they were a bit more
complicated to use, but then they had a lot of features. They are durable and effective.
Scan function does not allow for locking out undesired channels or display CTCSS/DCS tones.
I consider this a drawback.
As with All GMRS capable radios, and FCC-Issued GMRS license is required for GMRS frequencies.