Motorola MS350R Two-Way Radio Review
9/10 Based on Ken's Review
Purchase From Bass Pro Shops For $100
Today I'm reviewing the Motorola MS350R Two-Way Radios which I purchased from Bass Pro Shops for around $100.00. Since purchasing I have taken them on countless camping trips and have been very pleased with their performance.
These two-way way radios can be powered by the included battery packs or by 3 AA batteries. The battery packs are basically three rechargeable batteries taped together in a package. Motorola recommends you charge the batteries for a full 24 hours the first time. After doing this you’re ready to go. The packaging states that the radios may not float when batteries other than the charging pack are used.
The batteries are Nickle Medal Hydride (NiMH) and can develop memory like the cell phones we all used to use. For this reason I always let the batteries fully rundown before recharging, and keep a pack of AA batteries in my bag for when that happens while out camping.
AA batteries are going to give you far superior talk and standby time over the supplied battery pack, however; I’ve used the radios for two days straight on the battery pack without having to recharge.
Functionality Of the Motorola MS350R
There are no dials or knobs to rotate on these radios. If you’re used to turning a knob for volume control you’ll have to get used to pushing buttons instead. There are quite a few options you can turn on and off on these walki talkies, which are selected through the menu button. If you miss an option you have to scroll through each option before you get back to it, kind of like setting a digital watch.
The learning curve isn’t very steep though. Even someone with no experience using a two-way radio should be up and running in no time. I usually set the channels on each radio once and never have to push another button (Besides the talk button of course).
I love the fact that these radios are waterproof. You never have to worry about accidentally dropping one in the water or being caught in a storm. They are very well weatherproofed and I’ve never found water inside the radio. Even after a day of swimming with them.
They come with a belt clip I decided was more hassle than it was worth so I either clip the radio on my bag or keep it my bag. The belt clip is just difficult to remove from your belt and difficult to return the radio to. I’d rather just not use it. Luckily they can be completely removed from the radio and never thought about again if you so choose. If you use an optional handsfree headset with the radios you may want to use the belt clip.
I occasionally worry about the possibility of the antenna breaking off while in my bag since the antenna is permanently extended and not flexible. This however has never been a problem and the antenna seems hefty enough to take some force.
Repeater Channels And Range
This radio is able to use repeater channels - GMRS channels 15R-22R – but will require a license if you want to do it legally. It also has 7 NOAA channels (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) for getting weather forecast. I use this feature constantly and find it very useful for weather updates.
Maximum range in optimal conditions is 35 miles. That range is basically if two people were standing on two mountaintops 35 miles apart with a direct line of sight. Typical range while out camping in the woods is about a mile, which is typical for most two-way radios.
All in all, I haven’t found any major problems with the Motorola MS350R and would certainly recommend it as an addition to your camping and hiking gear.
John nollenberg wrote:Bought these to go on a hunting trip we had 1 in each vehicle not even a quarter mile we could not communicate at all even in the woods at a half mile not good we could see each other and not communicate bad investment
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