Most helpful critical review
592 of 618 people found the following review helpful
A good budget buy, but you're better off spending the extra $20 for the MR355s.
on July 7, 2010
I bought 2 pair of these radios as well as 3 pair of the MR355s. They cost $20 less, so I could get about 3 pair of these for 2 pair of the MR355s. I distributed them to my supervisors, vehicle operators and field engineers in our open area shipyard.
The reception is fine, although you do notice the clearer sound and slightly longer range of the MR355s (I'm talking only a couple hundred yards longer).
The unit uses the supplied NiMH battery pack or 3 AAA's. Of course, AA's batteries like the ones used in the MR355 would have more power and last longer, but then, the MR355 has more features (like vibrate and an LED flashlight) that use up more power. Anyway, I knew the compromises when I got the units.
However, I wasn't ready for the MH230 to show 2 bars on the battery icon and yet the display wasn't functioning clearly. Some of the LCD lines were very faint or could only be seen at an extreme angle. For instance, the 8 looked like a 9 bcs the left lower LCD bar wouldn't light up. After trying out the features, I fully charged the battery. Wouldn't you know it, at full charge, all the LCD's work. At partial charge (or discharge, as you like it) some of the LCD bars would fade out. This happened with all 4 MH230 radios and didn't happen with any of the MR355s, even as the more expensive radio's would run out of juice. NOTE to Giant Electronics, fix this issue! You're ruining Motorola's rep.
Anyway, we use the MH230 in thick steel crane and payloader cabins, talking to people in the office 700 yards away with a couple 30 foot tall cargo ships and a few dozen welders doing their thing in between. The sound is mostly clear and everyone gets heard. The users wish they had the PTT earbuds that come with the more expensive units, but hey, you get the bright yellow ones, be happy!
The guys who crawl around inside the steel hulls get the MR355s with the PTT, vibra and lights. They're happy too.
4 stars for the unit performance, minus 1 star bcs of the LCD problems at half batt.
Can't complain I'm not getting the 23 mile range, or they would owe me stars. BTW, many 25 Watt vehicle or base station radios with 36 inch antennas won't get 23 miles, so don't expect these reach that far.