New to HAM, looking for handheld recommendations

I am brand new to HAM!
I’m studying now for the technician license, primarily for another hobby; radio control (RC) multirotors and airplanes. During my studies I am realizing the value of getting a small transceiver for emergency use. Any recommendations would be gladly accepted!


Hi there, Jprattjr45,

After several reviews there are several great handhelds available in different price ranges. For a beginner who wants to use a new license and become familiar with the basics you could start with a less expensive BaoFeng model like the BF-F8HP with an upgraded antenna. See on Amazon for best deal.


@jprattjr45 I agree with @Mike-KI5SIN . Check out this guide put together by some of the elmers at the American Radio Club (Elmer just means person with experience in ham radio!): The Best Handheld Ham Radios (2022) - American Radio Club

It’s probably best to get started with something inexpensive to learn the basics and make a few contacts (The Baofeng is popular because of its affordability). Then if you grow more into the hobby, you can look at getting something with a little more flexibility.

I’m currently shopping for a mobile rig for my truck. I’m looking at the ICOM 5100 but it comes with a bigger price tag lol!

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Hi James

Thanks you for your link and input. The Icom is a popular handheld for certain as several in our local club here in Walker County, Texas have suggested the 5100 model as their choice for mobiles. I’m running an Alinco DR735 for my base rig but haven’t upgraded my Bao Feng BF-F8 HP yet as it performs quite well for the lower cost. But am still looking at either the Icom or Alinco for my mobile sometime in the near future.
It is nice to be able to reach out to new friends and find great tech support here.

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