Innovations always bring ease to the consumers in a way or another. Although the analog walkie talkies have improved in the past decade at securing stable communication, there are still some hard to ignore limitations. Thus, to counter the flaws of analog transmission, a digital walkie talkie was introduced.
But do they actually provide for better transmission? Or how they outperform the analog radios? And which manufacturers have specialized in producing the digital radios? Read the full article to know this all about digital radios.
Digital Two-Way Radios VS Analog Two-Way Radios?
Analog Walkie Talkies
The analog radios have been in the market since around 1933. This long history has brought multiple innovations in the device such that most of its flaws are overcome. Now, you can find the analog walkie talkie in small size, lightweight and large battery capacity.
However, what dictates the name of these radios is the operational technique. The analog walkie talkies establish the connection by carrying signals in analog waveforms utilizing the frequency modulations. Such communications are generally possible between a single transmitter and receptor. Also, the radios have a limited transmission range.
Digital Walkie Talkies
On the contrary, digital walkie talkies are the outcome of modern technology adopted by the radio industry. These walkie talkies work by converting the sound signals into digital form i.e., in binary numbers. This conversion might take a few seconds to transmit the message but the results it offers are exceptional.
The digital radios deliver crisp and clear sound with no interference as eavesdropping on a digital signal is quite difficult. Furthermore, digital radios have a smart technology that detects and suppresses the background noise to enhance the message of the transmitter. Then there is an extended transmission range, GPS tracking option, liberty to transmit to multiple receivers simultaneously, and a lot more than make these devices a better option than the analog ones.
Nonetheless, to enjoy all this you need to invest a small fortune. Also, it may take some time to get used to these radios but once you get comfortable with them, the transmission experience offered will never let you plan to quit using these radios.
Our Top Picks for Digital Walkie Talkies
The XT660 is the first digital radio launched by Motorola which is unlicensed as well. The radio comprises exciting features taking communication to the next level. With its digital PMR446 technology, you can maintain a stable connection with an individual or with the whole group.
The walkie talkie has 128 channels and a bundle of analog and digital privacy codes to secure conversation at maximum stability. Every message you deliver will be heard with clarity at the reception end, thanks to the high-quality speaker with 1.5W audio output.
The installed backlit LCD will keep you updated on the basic information like battery status, network level and the channel tuned. Whereas the keypad eases operating along with providing you the option of sending text messages of up to 126 characters.
And while you transmit, the standard Li-ion battery will continue powering your radio for around 20 hours. You can also record and re-listen audio of 15 minutes by using the record button. Although a bit bulky in size, this radio contains a whole heap of innovative features that the users would love to experience.
This radio supporting both digital (dPMR446) as well as analog (PMR446) technology, is another addition to the list of best digital walkie talkies. The radio has around 32 digital channels and 16 analog channels making your transmission compatible with both types of radios.
You can start transmitting through these walkie talkies right after buying as they are license-free. Owing to the fact that it’s a digital radio, the excellent transmission quality is a guarantee. To keep up this promise, the radio contains a high-grade speaker that can emit the audio messages with 1W of output.
Communicating at noisy locations makes the message delivery difficult, but the audio amplifier in this radio solves the problem by minimizing the extra noises. You can carry these walkie talkies to work at commercial or industrial sites, or for exploring out in a forest as they have a rugged built compliant with different military standards.
The Li-ion battery installed offers long operating hours and the VOX feature eases transmission by allowing hand-free mode. However, instead of a backlit LCD, the radio updates about current status using 7-color LED which makes functioning a bit complex.
The Retevis RT40 is another top-end digital walkie talkie. With its compact dimensions and lightweight, this radio is best if you love venturing. You can easily switch between analog and digital modes by tuning in the available 16 analog, 16 digital and 16 analog/digital channels. This advanced channel availability allows the user to establish communication not only with digital units but also with analogs.
Moreover, this digital walkie talkie can establish a static-free communication at a transmission range of around 4 Km. The 1700 mAh battery installed is powerful enough to keep you connected with your group for the whole day without requiring a recharge.
At the reception end, the 500mW speaker ensures that all messages deliver in a crystal-clear voice. To prevent distortion from background noises, the squelch feature works to detect and suppress the extra voices. Although modulating the radio is hard, one can strive to understand it for the sake of intelligible reception.
This radio is best for the hams willing to understand the operating of a transmitter. From channel numbers to names, frequencies to radio IDs, everything can be set through your computer. Plus, the integrated LCD and keypad will enable hassle-free transmissions.
With the availability of 3000 channels, you can always secure a stable communication even in remote areas. The 1000mW in-built speakers and DSP renders powerful reception. To keep you transmitting during electric failures or unavailability, the installed 3200 mAh battery will power the radio for around 16 hours.
You can explore outdoors without worrying about losing connection as the transmission range (8 Km approx.) of this radio is quite extensive. While the strong build of the radio endorses that no matter whether the dust invades or you submerge the radio in water, it will continue operating without any malfunctioning.
Here is another dual-band radio from Retevis comprising modern transmission technology. You can transmit through the radio in both analog and digital modes. As the radio is compatible with Motorobo, you can also use it for GPS tracking when away from home. The feature also assists in identifying the exact location of your lost mate.
Handling a large group of workers is hectic and the problem multiplies when you don’t have a reliable transmission channel to coordinate. To counter this, these radios install 2000 mAh Li-ion batteries to ensure smooth communication for 14 operating hours.
The radio has 3000 channels out of which you can easily scan and activate the most active band. Muffled reception is not a possibility with this radio as it contains CTCSS/DCS codes to guard your conversation. The in-built LCD with two colors and DTMF keypad keeps you working from day till night without requiring any prior practice for operating.
Should You Buy a Digital Walkie Talkie?
The digital walkie talkies have undoubtedly enhanced the transmission experience by carrying audio messages in the form of digital bits. This innovation opens doors for multiple features that you might not find in the analog radios. Some of them are crystal-clear communication, wide transmission range, coordination with multiple radios at once and much more.
Although expensive, once bought, these rugged radios can serve seamless transmission for ages. Also, as the digital radios recommended are backed by the tried and tested brands, investing in their products won’t cause any harm.