Hi, my name’s Christopher and I’ve been working with radios since I was a teenager. It started as a hobby that eventually bloomed into academic pursuits and finally, a career.
When I first started tinkering with my dad’s Yaesu FT-757GX back in the ‘90s, my only source of guidance was my old man. His time in the military taught him many things about communicating under dire circumstances and he bestowed everything he learnt onto me.
While I couldn’t have asked for a better teacher, I remember wishing that I had others I could talk to so I can learn more about radio communication.
That’s why my team and I started Military Radio. To help amateur radio enthusiasts, as well as professionals who need radios for their jobs, find their most suitable choices. We also detail any easy tips, tricks and secrets that we may come across during testing.
Collectively, our team tests over 50 products each month to find the best of the best. The radio products that you read about on Military Radio are the ones that have stood out from the crowd after rigorous testing.
Naturally, different personnel in our team typically test different types of radios, depending on their expertise. The different types of categories that you can read about on Military Radio include:
These are the most common types of radios that you’ll find most people have. They are dual-band radios since they can receive both AM as well as FM signals. AM stands for Amplitude Modulation while FM stands for Frequency Modulation.
To listen to most of the popular radio stations within a metropolitan area, you’ll need a radio that’s capable of receiving FM signals.
These radios come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. We test them with a specific set of factors in mind such as:
- Radio reception
- Build quality
- Sound quality
Amateur radios, colloquially known as “Ham radios”, are most commonplace for people looking to learn radio communication. These are the type of radio that you’d use for non-commercial messaging with other ham radio operators.
You don’t need a license if you’d like to merely buy a ham radio to just listen to different radio frequencies. However, if you want to transmit messages as well, then you’ll need to study up to get yourself a technician license.
This license requires you to pass an examination that consists of 35 questions related to topics such as:
- Radio theory
- Standard operating procedures
- Safety regulations
Once you obtain the license, you gain the ability to transmit messages and communicate with other licensed ham radio operators.
CB radios stand for Citizen Band radio and as the name suggests, they provide you access to “citizen bands” that allow regular folk to communicate with each other. They can be utilized by regular citizens for one-to-many communication over short-length radio waves.
|It’s important to note that CB radios are different from ham radios. You don’t require a license to use CB radios for personal or business-related communication.
Similar to most land-based mobile radio services, multiple different radios in the same area are able to share the same frequency signal. However, only one radio device may transmit at any one given time.
As the name suggests, these types of radios are constructed with portability in mind.
The most common examples of such radios are two-way radios such as walkie-talkies. They are small radios that can be utilized by two people to remain in contact over short distances. These are often the radios of choice for organizers and staff members of major events.
Another type of portable/handheld radio is simply one that works as an AM/FM radio. Naturally, they don’t allow you to transmit your signal but you can use them to listen to AM and FM frequencies.
While we’re at it, we also have portable ham radios. You can construct a ham radio Go Box that allows you to take your ham radio with you on camping trips. It’s a great thing to have since it can come in handy during harsh weather conditions and power outages.
Car radios can be difficult to measure the effectiveness of since they come in so many different varieties now. Not only do you have simple factory head units but you also get high-end monsters with features such as GPS navigation, anti-theft, and more.
In most cases, we judge car radios based on the following criteria:
- Room for customization
- Types of different music inputs available
- Radio reception
- Build quality
- Ease of installation
Lastly, we have our Radio Guides & FAQs section which we use as a place to address all of the common concerns that we find among radio enthusiasts. We scour through forums and try to answer all major questions that we find worth answering.
Additionally, our team also uses this category as a dumping ground for many secret tricks and lessons that we learn through our constant testing of different products. Any time anyone from our team discovers something neat, they have to write a post about it that goes here.
Considering that we test over 50 products and write over 30 reviews a month, there are certain brands whose products we test fairly regularly.
Some of the more household names that you’ll get to see products from on Military Radio include:
Jensen is a brand that is known for their durable and heavy-duty radio and audio accessories. If you want an amplifier, a speaker or a radio that is able to withstand tough weather conditions, then you’ll most likely be able to find a Jensen product that makes the cut.
In addition to manufacturing amps and speakers, they also manufacture televisions and TV accessories.
We really don’t think we have to give an introduction for Sony as a brand. On Military Radio, you’ll see the brand being mentioned when we review their top-of-the-line car radios as well as portable radios and CD players.
Prunus was a brand that came about as a passion project for a team of radio enthusiasts (just like us!) Their radios and accessories are often built-to-last and prioritize quality rather than variety or quantity.
Whenever we test Prunus products, it’s almost always a given that their sound quality will be the best out of all the products we test that day.
Sangean is a Taiwanese brand that provides some of the most varied line of products we’ve seen as far as radio brands go. They have radios that excel at a variety of different things such as:
- Sound quality
BAOFENG is a brand that has become one of our go-tos when it comes to handheld two-way radios. Their products are some of the most robust that we’ve tested and they’re incredibly easy to use as well.
That’s why we often recommend BAOFENG products to novices.
Meet the Team
Christopher R. Bunce
Considering how much I played around with my dad’s ham radio as a child, he pushed me to get my technician’s license as soon as I turned 18. I’ve been testing out all sorts of different radios and participating in ham radio contests ever since.
The reason why I’ve been obsessed with radio communication for as long as I have is because there’s always something new to learn. I started Military Radio not only to share everything I’ve learnt over the years but also, to discover things I never knew about radios from all of you.
Hey, I’m Luke and I’ve worked for over eight years as a radio mechanic at a variety of different specialized body shops around the country. If you wanna know anything about the latest car radios, speakers, amplifiers and other accessories, I’m your guy!
As repayment for an old favor, I’m helping Christopher out with testing for all car radios and car radio troubleshooting guides for Military Radio.
During my time in college, I used to volunteer regularly at our campus radio which was my first exposure to the world of broadcasting. It opened me up to a whole new world of communication and ever since, I haven’t looked back.
Over the years, I’ve been a part of several radio broadcasting stations across the country. My job at Military Radio is to test communication products w.r.t. their broadcasting capabilities and highlight the best ones for you.