By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Hikers and survivor-types alike will have several new two-way radios to choose from come CES.
Cobra will offer three new water-resistant GMRS models — the LI 7000-2 WX VP ($89.99) with a range of 25 miles, the $79.99 LI 6500 WX VP with a 20-mile range and the LI 4900 WX VP ($69.99) with an 18-mile range. All will be available in two packs.
The radios will all feature lithium-ion batteries, 22 channels and 121 privacy codes, selectable power to maximize range or conserve battery, 10-channel memory and 10-channel National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) all-hazards alert radio to warn of emergencies, and voice-activated (VOX) hands-free operation.
The units offer a call alert with 10 tones or the company's VibrAlert vibrating call feature for silent notification of an incoming call. Additional features include a Roger beep, illuminated LCD and key lock. The packages will include two lithium-ion battery packs and a dual-port desktop charger.
The PR 4100-2 WX VP features a range of 16 miles, 22 channels with 38 privacy codes, 10-channel NOAA alert radio, VOX, the ability to power up to increase range and a 10-channel memory. The water resistant radio also offers a 10-tone call alert, Roger beep, a key lock and will include a desktop charger. A two pack will retail for a suggested $59.99.
The 12-mile, PR 260-2 WX VP (two pack/$49.99) features 22 channels and 38 privacy codes, 10-channel NOAA alerts, VOX, a battery-saving mode, five-tone call alert, Roger beep and a key lock.
Finally, the 8-mile PR 170-2 VP (two pack/$39.99) offers 22 channels and 38 privacy codes, battery-saver circuitry (which switches to battery-saver mode if there are no transmissions within 10 seconds), a Roger beep, and an "auto squelch" feature which automatically ends weak transmissions or unwanted noise. It will ship with six AAA rechargeable batteries and a wall charger.
Midland Radio will ship the GXT800VP4 in April for a suggested $89.95. Features include 22 channels with 142 privacy codes, nine VOX levels, channel scan, direct call, auto squelch and NOAA alerts. Additional features include five call alerts, five animal-call alerts, silent operation, vibrating alert, JIS-4 class waterproofing, three power settings and a drop-in charger.
The company will also offer a crank-powered 22-channel GMRS radio with 121 privacy codes. The XT511 Base Camp features VOX, channel scan, auto squelch, two power settings, AM/FM radio reception, seven weather channels and weather alerts, an alarm clock and PLL drift-free weather broadcast reception. The unit is water resistant and features a back-lit LCD and built-in three LED flashlight. It will ship in June for a suggested $89.99.
Motorola will debut two new models in its Talkabout two-way radio line geared toward outdoor enthusiasts. The T9500R and T8500R both feature seven NOAA and four EC/Canada Marine Weather channels.
The 22-channel radios will incorporate a new PTT power boost feature that, when activated, extends the range of the radio by boosting the transmitter's power. The radios can vibrate silently, offer 121 privacy codes, and feature digital audio companding technology which Motorola claims reduces static hiss between words. The models will also incorporate the company's QT (Quiet Talk) interruption filter. When turned on, the filter blocks other manufacturers' radios from conversing on the same frequency.
The radios will work with an accessory car charger. The T9500R offers a range of 20 miles and will retail for a suggested $79.99 per pair while the T8500R will retail for a suggested $69.99 per pair.
Uniden's new GMR 2000 series sports a range of up to 20 miles when using the "power boost" button. They will include two radios and a dual charger, scramble for enhanced privacy, group/direct call and back-lit LCD displays.
The GMR- 2089-2CK features 22 channels, 142 privacy codes, caller name display, voice scramble, auto channel changing, direct calling, Roger beep, NOAA weather alerts and a silent mode. The 2099-2CK builds off the 2089 by adding a vibrating alert.
The 20-mile GMR 2059-2CK features voice scramble, NOAA weather alerts, 22 channels and 142 privacy codes, Roger Beep, a headset jack and a back-lit LCD.
The GMR 1448-2CK sports a range of 14 miles and offers NOAA alerts, voice scramble, 22 channels, 99 privacy codes and a back-lit LCD. Another 14-mile radio, the GMR 1438-2CK, will include two radios and a dual charger in the package. It features 22 channels, 99 privacy codes, Roger beep and back-lit LCD display. A version will also be sold without the charging cradle.
Finally, the 10-mile GMR 1035-2 will include two radios with 22 channels, channel scan and Roger beep.
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