How to Choose the Right Two Way Radio Antenna
The antenna on your two way radio is more important than you might realize. If an antenna is damaged, or altered in some way, it can affect your radios ability to communicate with your team – and impact the efficiency and productivity the technology provides your workplace.
If you have a two way radio, and you notice that range in your communication is less than normal, or you see damage, then it’s important to replace that accessory as soon as possible. The added benefit? Keeping on top of this will expand the life of your two way radio, and it’s actually cost effective to do so (sometimes as little as $20!)
Often when you’re looking at antennas, there are a number of different options to choose from:
- Whip – These are seven to eight inches long – often known for more gain, and therefore better range for your two way radio.
- Stubby – These are three to four inches long – short, and less intrusive. But not for everyone. Often there is a sacrifice in range, depending on your frequency.
- Heliflex or Helical – These vary in lengths, and are thicker, offering great range and coverage for your two way radio experience.
But how do you know which antenna to choose? Let’s take a look below:
- The first key step with choosing an antenna for your two way radio is picking one that is specked for your radio frequency. If, for example, if you have a frequency of 154 MHz, you need to ensure your antenna covers that band. This ensures peak performance when it’s in use.
- If you’re working on the VHF band, which is often the case in rural settings throughout Canada, then it’s important to not use stubby antennas on your two way radio. Sure, they’re popular for wearing on your belt throughout the day, but stubby antennas have lower frequencies and, with portable two way radios attached to your body, you will not get the range in VHF that you would in UHF. It’s important in this case to use a higher gain antenna – like a heliflex or helical option.
- If your radio falls in the UHF, 700/800 or 900 MHz frequency bands, then a stubby or whip antenna are great options for you. A whip antenna, for example, would give you an increased range, due to its length, but a number of users and industries don’t like the length of the antenna, and opt for the smaller stubby option.
It’s important to note that some MotoTRBO level two way radios are GPS capable. If you are using some of the GPS features or software within your MotoTRBO two way radio from Motorola, it’s important to ensure you have a GPS capable antenna.
The biggest thing with your antenna purchase is knowing that it is the key point in allowing your two way radio to transmit appropriately. Whether damaged, loosely fit or broken, it’s a quick, simple fix to keeping your team in contact.
What two way radio antenna will work for your needs? That’s where Nova Communications comes in. Our team of two way radio experts has more than 30 years of experience with answering that question, and all your two way radio inquiries. Starting from the beginning and need to know what the best two way radio is for your needs. Try our free Portable Radio Selection Guide below – in two minutes you’ll be given our top choices for your team.
Contact us today if you have any questions.