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Knowledge Base
Answers to Your Questions about Radio and Wireless Voice Communications

Improving Radio Range

06 August 2018

Radio range is governed mostly by the laws of Physics but good radio design is also critical. Efficient aerials, sensitive receivers, and higher transmit powers improve range. Small changes in receiver sensitivity have a big effect, large changes in transmit power have small effects.

All good quality radios are pretty much built to the same sensitivity, have similar aerials and transmit powers. Audio quality - being able to understand what is said with a weak signal gives a more useable range. Audio quality does vary across radio models, some just sound better than others.

All these things are part of the design of the radio but as a user you can improve range in the following ways;

  • Moving to higher ground, even a few metres will help on open country.
  • Getting into the open, a few metres away from buildings will help for outdoor radio systems. Licence Free (PMR 446) or Licenced Radios. The right choice here may help.
  • Using Base Station Systems will help with virtually all systems tied to a geographical location.
  • Using Repeater Systems will help with virtually all systems tied to a geographical location.
  • Digital, see Digital vs Analogue Range radios give a perceived better range.Even choosing VHF or UHF radios may help.


Click on the links to read more about the Pros and Cons of each system.

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