Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie Review [8 Reasons to Buy & 3 Reasons Not to Buy]

Outdoor enthusiasts will tell you how tough it is to find a two-way radio that truly works and meets their needs. This is not because there are no well-built and functional radios out there; it just means there are too many walkie talkies on the market, each competing to be heard, and every manufacturer will say anything to outdo the competition and present themselves as the right choice.

As we always advise, the best way to tell if a product (especially a walkie talkie) is worth your investment is to carry out a thorough investigation by looking at honest reviews.

We’re not talking about random reviews by affiliates who only care about making a sale; I’m referring to detailed reviews like this one, based on actual experience and verified user testimonies.

Take the BAOFENG UV-5R Walkie Talkie, for instance. How do you know it is the right radio for you? What do you know about it? The first question you should ask yourself is what you need a walkie talkie for; then cross-reference that need with the functionality and features of the radio you’re considering. Note that it is wrong to simply take the manufacturer’s word for it; pay attention to reviews.

If it’s the BAOFENG UV-5R you’re looking up and wondering if it does what the manufacturers say it does, then this is the right place to find out. We’ll tell you everything you need to know about the product, including reasons why you may consider buying it as well as reasons why you may just have to look away. Let’s move on with the nitty gritty.

The BAOFENG UV-5R MK4 offering is a two-piece HAM radio within the Mirkit edition.

The exterior gives off a very rugged look that screams “serious business”.

Well, it is for serious business quite alright- hunters, fishermen, law enforcement agencies, adventure enthusiasts and campers have very good things to say about the product.

Don’t let the image deceive you, this product is actually not as heavy as it appears, but it does pack some weight, with very useful accessories for your convenience.

It is a popular model within the UV series, a line of rugged, long range FRS/GMRS radios that is fast gaining popularity across the globe.

For the UV-5R edition, BAOFENG partners with Mirkit in the US on several grounds beyond just distribution.

Mirkit takes care of warranty issues, accessories and customer service within the United States for ease and convenience. Often regarded as an amateur model, you’ll still require some radio knowledge to get a good grip on this one.

The UV-5R MK4 gives out maximum power and output, leading to incredible long-range communication and clear audio. Its flexibility and adjustability are other factors that give this product a competitive edge.

Specifications of Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie

  • 2 radios in the package
  • The two-way radio weighs 0.4 kilograms, that’s about 0.88 pounds
  • Has 128 FRS and GMRS channels
  • Has numerical and directional buttons for easy operation
  • Antenna is detachable
  • Has dimensions of 0.98 x 2.76 x 3.15 inches
  • Belt clip and hand strap included
  • LCD Display is large
  • Also includes built-in LED flashlight
  • Features an FM Radio

At What Frequencies Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie Works?

The BAOFENG UV-5R MK4 radio transmits and receives signals on the FRS and GMRS frequencies. There have also been claims that it has access to MURS frequency.

The Multi-Use Radio Service is one that has been permitted for use since 2002, but requires a license. The GMRS frequencies will also require a license, except when used as just a receiver and not a transmitter.

More so, this two-way radio operates on both the UHF and VHF frequency bands, so you can be sure of long-range communication and penetrative signal power.

The Range of Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie

At full capacity, with full battery and in perfect environments, this radio can reach as much as 20 miles in range.

But it’s important to note that obstructions and impediments or even bad terrains and weather will not affect the range as much, as a result of its incredible output that is up to 8 watts when properly programmed (and its combination of UHF and VHF frequencies).

So, while bad conditions can affect optimum range, you’ll still be able to go really far with this one.

How long can Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie Battery Survive?

This BAOFENG radio comes fully powered with a 7.4V 1,800 mAh Lithium-ion battery.

This can give you as much as 12 to 16 hours of talk time, depending on use. But this can also be further stretched using the power-saving feature of the radio. The package comes with an easy-to-use desktop charger as well.

Accessories of Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie

  • Earphone: The BAOFENG UV-5R MK4 walkie talkie comes with an earphone that is equipped with a headset and mic. This can greatly enhance your convenience by offering you hands-free communication for when your hands are busy on other things.
  • Hand Strap: We all know how burdensome it can be holding a walkie talkie everywhere. There are times when you just need your hands to be free. With the hand strap here, you can easily strap the radio to your hands or anywhere else you deem convenient.
  • Detachable Antenna: This is considered an accessory here because it comes detached and is only attached when necessary. The antenna helps the signal to travel farther as well as acts as a receiver as well as enhancing the clarity of your signals.
  • Desktop Charger: The radio is powered by a rechargeable battery, so having a factory-built charger included in the box is a great advantage. The easy to use charger requires only 3 to 4 hours to power up your battery and get you going once again.
  • 40” Programming Cable: This is another important accessory necessary for flashing your radio. It is a simple cable with a USB interface on the other end for easy connection to other devices, like a computer.

Important Features of Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie

Some notable features you’ll find extremely useful on this walkie talkie include;

1. 50 CTCSS & 104 CDCSS

These codes ensure you’re able to talk over the different channels securely without worrying about interruptions or other radio users interfering with your signals.

2. Dual-Band Display

The radio’s display is designed in such a way that offers you control of both the UHF and VHF bands. You’re able to see on what band it is operating at every point in time. This can help you make decisions as well.

3. VOX Function

If you take a simple survey and ask radio users to tell you their top 5 important qualities a radio should have, many will talk about the VOX feature.

This promotes hands-free communication through a voice-recognition technology that uses Voice Activation for calls. What this means is that your radio comes on automatically as soon as you start speaking.

4. Detachable Antenna

Antennas are great components in walkie talkies for their ability to boost coverage and signal quality. But it is even better when your antenna is detachable as this can greatly make storage and travel quite easy.

The antenna is quite long, at 6.5 inches (even longer than the body of the radio), so being able to take it off enhances the radio’s portability.

5. Power Settings

With this ham radio, you’re able to set the output power at low, medium or high levels, depending on your needs per time.

6. PTT Button

This is another important feature that a radio should have. We call it the easy switch, as it empowers a user to switch easily from voice reception mode to voice transmission mode and vice versa. This means you can start making calls with a single push of a button.

7. Auto Keypad Lock

How frustrating can it be when you put your device in your pocket, in a pouch or even strapped on your shoulder or belt, only to find wrong commands playing out hours later?

This happens a lot, and very frequently. One way to prevent this mishap is to secure your settings using the auto keypad lock like the one featured in the BAOFENG UV-5R MK4.

8. LED Flashlight

Having a LED flashlight on a radio is becoming a trend among newer models. This BAOFENG entry has one and can come in handy if you experience emergency power outages or find yourself in the dark or even running late into the night during an outdoor adventure.

What is the best usage of Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie?

This is an outdoor radio by design and function. It’s impressive long range, design and power gives it so much advantage for outdoor activities like camping, hunting, hiking and so on.

While it can also be deployed for flyfishing or actual fishing on a boat, it is important to note that it is not designed to be water resistant.

8 Reasons to Buy Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie

You should definitely buy this radio if you’re looking for a powerful radio that offers so much options and flexibility. Other reasons include;

  1. It is easily programmable to suit your needs.
  2. It has impressive range and coverage for long-distance communication.
  3. The radio is sturdy and durable, giving you value for money.
  4. It comes with incredible customer service and a satisfactory warranty element.
  5. Great accessories to enhance usability.
  6. Very flexible and convenient to use.
  7. Offers protection and security for your communication.
  8. The radio also gives you full control over several frequencies and channels to choose from.

3 Reasons Not to Buy Baofeng UV-5R Walkie Talkie

  1. If what you need is a radio you can use on water and not be worried about damage from contact with water, this may not be for you.
  2. You’re also likely to find cheaper radios within its ranks, as this is not the cheapest radio out there.
  3. You’re also likely to miss out on access to weather channels with this radio, except some reprogramming is done. Whatever you do, just be sure you operate within the provisions of the law.

Our Rating

FeatureRating (0-10)
Output Power9
Battery Life8

Final Comments:

  • ✅[All You Need in One Box]: Get 6pcs BaoFeng uv-5r radios with 12pcs 1800 mAh Batteries(One for use, One for backup) + 6pcs TD-771 High Gain Antennas(Longer Antenna that perform 30% better) + 6pcs Speaker Mic(Loud and clear sound quality) + 1pcs Driver Free Programming Cable(for you to customize your radio); Reasonable price is the ham radio user and business user top choice.
  • ✅[Double Batteries]: Extra battery for your radio, One for use One for backup. Each battery have up to 36 hours standby time. Another battery provide you Non-Stop communication experience, no need to worry about suddenly running out of power on the road.
  • ✅[High Gain Long Antenna]: This bundle comes with 6 pcs extra long antenna. Adding a TD-771 high gain antenna on your ham radio can greatly expands the signal transmission distance and enhances signal reception. This also helps you to hit the repeater further away to reach a longer communication distance.
  • ✅[Group Purchase Choice]: This set contains 6 pack uv-5r radio and a full set of accessories is included. One great value purchase makes your team/club ready to go,suitable for scouts, summer camp, outdoor activity clubs, family road trip, etc.
  • ✅[CHIRP & Keypad Programming]: You can use the Driver-free Programming Cable included to program the 128 Channels in your radio with 105 CTCSS/50 DCS via Keypad or CHIRP. We also provide In-Depth Programming Guide to walk you through your first programming. Adding privacy code to your channels can reduce interference from irrelevant signal.
  • ✅[Wide Compatibility]: BaoFeng uv-5r ham radio covers most commonly used frequency range, makes it compatible with many other ham radio handheld such as the baofeng bf-f8hp and baofeng uv-82 series.
  • ✅[Practical Functions]: BaoFeng uv5r radio is a beginner-friendly radio which has multiple functions and is easy to learn and operate. Functions: Dual-band display, Dual Freq. Display, Dual Watch, VOX, Busy Channel Lock-Out, Scan, Monitor, Voice Prompt, Built-in LED Flashlight, Emergency Alarm.
  • ✅According to FCC rules, baofeng uv-5r has passed part 15B and part 97 tests; FCC ID: 2AJGM-UV5R; Transmit frequency range: VHF 144-148MHz and UHF 420-450MHz; Receive frequency range: VHF 136-174 MHz and UHF 400-480 MHz.
  • ✅BaoFeng UV-5R is authorized by BaoFeng company; VITAHUI shop is an authorized US BaoFeng distributor.

BAOFENG hit the world by storm when it introduced its first line of walkie talkies many years ago. With consistency and innovation, the brand has grown over the years- introducing new and improved models- and is committed to satisfying the needs of its customers and everyone who needs walkie talkies.

The UV-5R MK4 radio is packed with maximum power and provides a very reliable tool for outdoor, long-distance communication. If all it provides is everything you need and you have no trouble with the few flaws we pointed out, then we highly recommend this product.

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