The editorial staff of 20 Minutes was not involved in the production of this article.
For our tests, we first evaluated the sound quality as well as the robustness of the devices. Then, we took into account their autonomy, their mode of feeding and their accessories. In addition, to verify their capture and range, we placed ourselves at different distances in various indoor and outdoor locations. Finally, we placed the different devices in the hands of adults and children to judge their maneuverability and ease of use. We also checked the different functions of the talkies, as well as the quality of their screens.
The selection of the 4 best walkie talkies to choose in 2023
- Midland G9 Pro: for outdoor use
- Retevis RT388: child-friendly
- Motorola T42: the smallest form factor
- Retevis RT24: the strongest
Midland G9 Pro: for outdoor use
Used mainly for hunting, this talkie is intended for outdoor use. It has a dual power supply and a large backlit screen, allowing better visibility. In our tests, we found it easy to use and even though it is heavy, it fits well in the hands. On the performance side, it includes a double PTT button, 32 channels and a large number of private codes, making the capture excellent. Its maximum range is 12 km in the open field, 4 to 6 km in the forest and 1 to 2 km in buildings. Finally, the device uses 4 AA batteries and its autonomy is from 12 to 36 hours. Also note that the brand provides several accessories (earpiece, belt clip, etc.)
- Dual power supply
- Easy to use
- Multiple accessories
- 32 channels
- Excellent capture
- Heavy equipment
Retevis RT388: child-friendly
These devices seduced us with their quality / price ratio because they were able to detach themselves from the toy aspect. They have backlit LCD display, 10 call tones, flashlight, Scan and VOX features, keyboard lock, etc. With their compact and lightweight design, they are suitable for children. In terms of their performance, they include 8 channels for a maximum range in free field of 3 km and the sound was very clear. On the other hand, their feeding mode has been impractical and they use a lot of energy (between 6 and 16 hours of autonomy), which makes them less economical.
- Clear sound
- Multiple features
- Compact and lightweight design
- 8 channels
- Inconvenient feeding mode
Motorola T42: the smallest form factor
Easy to use, these walkie talkies have proven to be effective, especially thanks to their LCD screens, thanks to which it is possible to navigate between the different features of the devices. However, not having a backlight, they are not legible in the dark. In addition, even if they lack some functions (lamp, emergency call, Roger beep), the devices are easy to handle and hold well in hand. In addition, they have 16 channels and have a range of 4 km in open field. Finally, we found its volume and sound quality sufficient.
- Easy to use
- Holds well in hand
- 16 channels
- Sufficient volume and sound quality
- Lack of backlight
- Lacks some features
Retevis RT24: the strongest
Thanks to their simple design and excellent quality allowing them to withstand any weather conditions, these talkies are very strong. They are equipped with a PTT side button, indicator light and 2 dials allowing them a good grip. They have 16 channels and subcodes avoid picking up foreign signals. In addition, even if they lack some features, they still have interesting parameters for clear communication. In addition, we appreciated the recording in the buildings and the audio component was effective. Finally, note that the autonomy varies between 8 and 12 hours and the maximum range is 2 to 3 km in free field.
- Excellent quality
- Good grip
- 16 channels
- Autonomy between 8 and 12 hours
- Lacks some features
Other models tested
- Baofeng UV 5R 8W: This model was difficult to program and use. It is reserved for professionals accustomed to this kind of device
- Midland XT10: The autonomy of these walkie talkies has been low and their power mode is impractical
5 key criteria for choosing your walkie talkie
According to our product experts, here are the key criteria to consider when choosing your walkie talkie.
- Maneuverability is influenced by the size and weight of the device
- Favor the lightness and compactness of the walkie talkie to ensure a good grip
The quality of capture
- The number of communication channels, private codes and the frequency of the model influences the quality of capture
- Also note that some environments are particularly sensitive to interference but some components are able to counter them.
- The roger beep announces, thanks to a sound noise, the end of each speech
- The presence of a VOX button offers hands-free use
- The use of a dual channel allows communication with two people at the same time
Charging and autonomy
- Some products are sold without batteries included
- The majority of products use Lithium batteries that charge via USB, which is the alternative to choose
- The autonomy must exceed 12 hours of resistance for optimal use
- The IP is composed of two digits: one that indicates the level of protection against solid parts
- The other indicates water resistance
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