Whether you want a radio for emergency purposes, or one for a week outdoors camping, its best that you go for the best options available. The consumer market has several options when it comes to such types of communication devices. That said, some of these products won’t necessarily be suitable for your needs. Thus, when you want to find the best CB base station, its best for you to make an informed choice for the best results. We have developed this in-depth guide to help you with the selection process.
- 1 A Beginners Guide to CB Radio
- 2 4 Best CB Base Station Reviews
- 3 Finally
A Beginners Guide to CB Radio
Commonly referred to as the Citizens Band Radio Service or CB, this is a type of radio communication which is in the Personal Radio Service Category (PRS). Similar to other types of PRS, such as MURS and SMRS, CB is suitable for both personal and public use. The use of such a device is covered by Part 95 of FCC rules. Moreover, using a CB Radio does not require a license.
Channels and Age Requirement
The number of channels on CB services is 40 channels, which can be found in AM Mode or Single Sideband (SSB) mode. The benefit of using SSB is that its less prone to noise, and also covers an extensive range when compared to AM mode. Furthermore, it also occurs on the high end of CB radios. As far as age goes, there is no age limit when you want to use CB radios. In fact, anyone can use a CB radio. The channels on CB radios and frequencies are not assigned to a specific party. Usually, you can use the CB Radio on any of the 40 channels and frequencies reserved by the FCC, but there are some key factors to consider.
Factors When Using CB Channels
First, you can only use the 40 channels and frequencies that are available with your CB radio. However, Channel 9 is best reserved for emergency purposes or when traveling. Any channel can be used for emergency or travel purposes. Furthermore, since all these channels are shared, its best to give priority to emergency communications in all channels.
The maximum required for operating CB radios depends on the type of signal you want to transmit. Usually, the AM signals have a maximum of four watts. Furthermore, SSB mode has a maximum power range of 12 watts Peak Envelope Power, otherwise referred to as PEP. According to the FCC, you cannot raise the power output of the CB unit, or connect it to an amplifier or perhaps modify the connectivity of the device. Plus, you are only allowed to use an FCC-certified device, with each label being certified for specific purposes.
CB is only suitable for short-range and local communications. However, you can increase the range by performing a signal bounce off the ionosphere, otherwise referred to as a “skipping.” This technique is referred to as a “shooting skip,” and some CB users can bounce a signal for hundreds of miles. However, the FCC has specific rules for CB station communication ranges, which average at 155.5 miles. That said, CB signals are known to skip naturally based on various factors, so it is not unusual to send transmissions to unintended directions.
Since the 40 channels are shared with other users, there are some rules to consider when operating CB radio. Users should never speaker with another station for long durations, which usually surpass the five-minute mark. You must for a few minutes, before starting another communication process. During the early days of using CB, the FCC did not necessitate users to have a license or call sign. While neither of these is no longer required, it is still common to reserve a “call sign” usually in the form of “CB handle.” Users can create their unique handles based on FCC rules.
Also, CB users have specific lingo and codes, which are reserved for communication purposes. Usually, ten codes are accepted universally for CB transmission, when in the AM mode. Also, the Q signals are typically reserved for Single Side Band signals.
When getting a CB radio, the most critical factor to consider is the antenna. Even if antennas are often components of Handheld CB radios, they are usually not included with the mobile units. You must purchase these components separately. Regardless of whether its an entry-level radio or a top performer, the type of antenna you pick can have many benefits.
4 Best CB Base Station Reviews
The Uniden BC355N 300 channel base and the mobile scanner is a feature-packed and user-friendly communication device. It can pick up various types of reception, including six service banks that you can use for multiple applications.
These include applications such as emergency medical services, weather, air, marine, and more. Even more, this exceptional unit comes with Close Call RF Capture Technology, which instantly tunes to the signals from transmitters that are close.
With the unique pre-programmed search, you will find it easy to find active frequencies, and you will stay on top of local occurrences within your area. The radio even lets you save as many as 300 frequencies, which you can scan using preset frequencies. Thus, whenever you come across a newly activated frequency, you can keep it for future use. This way, you will enjoy quick access to frequencies each time.
You will also be pleased that this unit features a backlit display, which makes it easy to use in low light conditions. The entire set is even available with an AC adapter and DC power cable, which makes power supply highly convenient.
The Uniden BEARCAT 980 40- Channel SSB CB Radio is also an excellent recommendation for your needs. This unit helps you stay connected while out on the road, and it's also perfect for people with a long drive ahead of them.
It features a large and easy to read display channel, which makes machine operation convenient. Furthermore, the radio comes with an outstanding control panel, with a seven-color personalized display. The unique display makes the base station convenient to use in all light conditions.
The makers of this unit have also done well to include easy to read laser-etched keys. When getting a CB base station for your needs, its good to go for a unit with a robust design structure. Such a design not only ensures longevity but also makes it easy to install the radio in small spaces such as a car.
With its revolutionary design and versatile functions, it’s not only an ideal choice of a bedside radio but also an indispensable tool for emergency preparedness purposes, traveling, camping, backpacking, and other outdoor activities.
The newest and most advanced Kaito Voyager PRO KA600 CB base station is an excellent recommendation for your needs. This is an excellent radio, which is ideal for both emergency and normal communication purposes.
It provides various ways through which you can power up. These include an AC/DC adapter, three AA batteries, and an in-built rechargeable Ni-MH battery. More so, the patent flip-up 180-degree adjustable solar panel provides a convenient power supply for your needs.
With its revolutionary design and versatile functions, this unit is not on an ideal bedside radio, but the perfect way to address emergencies. The radio is also connected to the Emergency Alert System (EAS), which will automatically activate to alert you about any bad weather. It even features a Radio Data System, which is a communications protocol that lets you communicate through FM radio signals.
The CB base station also comes with a host of additional features, including an alarm clock, sleep timer, thermometer, and more.
Realize what you have been missing in communications when you have the Midland MXT400VP3 Micro mobile two radio. This 40-watt walkie talkie features high and lower power GMRS channels, which make communication a convenient process.
Even more, the radio can provide an extended 65-mile communication range in open areas, with little or no obstruction. This is all thanks to the exceptional MXTA11 5db gain antenna, which improves the connectivity range by 4x.
The best part about using this unit is that all its features are simple to use, and the radio boots up fast. You will find it easy to tune to your chosen channel and the ergonomic dials that make everything way much more comfortable.
To make things better, the radio comes with as many as 142 privacy codes, which provide you with several channel options. This way, you will never hear of any unwanted transmissions. The inclusion of a convenient keypad lock will also prevent accidental prevention of mode keys when in use. The Midland brand has also done well to incorporate this unit with keystroke tones, which produce audible sounds with each press.
There are many ways you can communicate in the modern world. We have identified the best CB base station, which is often perfect for emergency communication and more. When getting a CB base station, it's best to familiarize yourself with the rules and factors associated with the use of such a tool.
Also, try and consider the key features of the ideal communication station for your needs. There are many different brands and types available today, which means you have to make an informed choice for the best results.