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Showing 1-10 of 922 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 977 reviews
on September 4, 2017
It took a couple of weeks for this radio to arrive. Charged up fine when I first got it. Used the radio for 3 days. Charged it up a 2nd time and worked for 3 days, no problem. Charged it up for the third time, charger died. Charger base works but the 10 volt power supply stopped working. Baofeng warranty requires returning the item to authorized seller or repair center. So you have to send the whole radio back with packaging and original invoice, and maybe you get YOUR radio back or you get a refurbished one, or you get a new radio. Since I only have $25 into this, shipping it would cost half of what I paid for it. Useless warranty actually. That said, the radio works great when coupled with an original Nagoya NA-771 antenna. Stubby that comes with it has terrible losses, so you might as well order an NA-771 antenna. The stubbie does work great when placed atop a mini UHF adapter and mated up with RG59 with an air wound 1:1 choke/balun about 14" wound around a 6" in form and then raise it 10 to 15 feet in the air and you have a nice antenna. On the radio itself the stubbie stinks. The NA-771 appears to have been made for this radio so its a good fit.

Now on for the rest. Programming is great when using CHIRP but you need a cable for it. Order OEM Baofeng and you won't be disappointed. Order from someone in mainland China who says its OEM Baofeng and you may or may not get OEM. I got a knock off which required so much work that I ended up buying OEM and having it shipped priority. The knock off is a 10 year old version of the chipset and the UV5R uses a modern chipset that downloads the drivers automatically without further install of driver software.

The radio performs well, expect that you will put 4 watts out ONLY if you have an adequate groundplane. Your arm is not an adequate groundplane so figure keep it on high power and using it handheld will get you about 1 to 1.5 watts out. Maybe 2. Hits repeaters well on VHF, iffy on UHF depending on distance, line of sight, and what's between you and the repeater. Simplex works, but you will maybe get 25 miles with nothing between you and the other unit. Maybe. Not a shoe in. Works good with mobile antennas, and Nagoya makes one for this unit that matches it well.

All in all, don't count on the charger. There are numerous complains about it bouncing around the net. Mostly the biggest complaint is it needs 10 volts into the cradle to charge it. You can purchase step up USB cables and step-down cigarette lighter plug adapters on eBay just be prepared to wait.

Also, go for the BL-5L 3800 mah battery. It will give you double the life. All in all for $25 the radio is worth it but the charger is junk.
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on March 5, 2014
Ok, as been said, the instructions are not real user friendly (reduced one star for this issue). However I used a youtube video and figured out what I needed to. Was able to listen in to conversations from inside the house from operators on the outskirts of town. I live in A large city in southern texas, and had no issues. I coulnd't track down a repeater, however on the scan i was able to hear some broadcasts.

I used the stock antenna, and the broadcast locations were over 15 miles away. Again, not a HAM guy.. still very very new at this.. but I liked what I heard. I think this would be fine for my needs.

Delivery was great, packing was great, and no other issues.

I ordered a longer antenna, and plan to order a disposable battery adapter for regular batteries, and rechargeable batteries. I also ordered a car charger for this item for greater mobility. (personal choice for me just in case)

Great little piece of gear.. Amazing piece for for the price...
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on February 27, 2017
I have bought a lot of these radios. They are a great little two meter radio. I use them to scan local police chatter and they work well. They are not the fastest scanning radio but if you don't put a lot of channels in, it works well. I would certainly recommend anyone buying a radio to buy a programming cable as well. It makes programming multiple channels a breeze. They have been very durable for me and I have dropped mine many times. Battery life is great. If you don't transmit a lot, you are good for the day on a charge. I have worked stations on the satellite SO-50 with just the stock antenna. They are a great starter radio and for the price they can't be beat!
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on September 16, 2015
I know these get a lot of mixed reviews and mostly about how hard they are to program.

Those other reviews only inspired me to learn how to manually program this!

Along with learning how to manually program the radio, I learned how to modify the charger base for extending the external power supply for a variety of voltages.

The instruction manual that comes with this is pretty much garbage, however, there are multiple manuals online and my favorite was a list of the menu options, what they are, how they work and what settings should be set for HAM radio use.
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on June 1, 2013
I have a wouxon, a puxing and an earlier Baofeng. This is tied with the Wouxon (and I have the pricier Wouxon, legal for commercial and amateur). Much better than the earlier Baofeng. Many of the hams on our local repeater are using this Baofeng, and they work great. The audio sounds as good as their pricey "name brand" mobile radios, seriously. There is one guy I talk to regularly, and I can't tell if he is on his icom mobile or the Baofeng. Assuming he is close enough for the 5 watts to reach.

This really is a fantastic deal, and all hams who use VHF/UHF should have one! Of course the manual is really hard to use. There are sites on the net with English as a first language explanations. Also, it goes without saying that you should use the programming software to program this rig. Makes it much easier, even though the software is also hard to understand. But it works. Buy the correct USB cable. Don't skimp on the ones with the fake prolific chip, you will have driver woes forever.

For those just browsing, please remember this is an amateur radio, and you do need an FCC license! This not a replacement for a "family radio". Search for FRS if that is what you are looking for!
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on July 12, 2017
Powerful little radio transmitter. The price can't be beat. Having been through an emergency where the cell towers were shut down, I never want to experience that feeling of being "cut off" again! I advise to outfit your family with these and some real walkie-talkies *before* you need them. These are also good for trips, being at the mall or anywhere you and your family are out and about where your cell signal is weak!
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on October 17, 2016
This is a great little radio. I compare it to name brands from japan. Cant see the difference except price. Has solid receive and transmit distance is decent. If you get a better antenna of course you will see a improvement. Feels good in your hand and the battery holds up vary well. Thought it would feel and look cheap for the price, It Exceeds my expectations. When i step out side i can hit most of the repeaters full quieting... A keeper...
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This BaoFeng UV-5R VHF/UHF Dual Band Radio was recommended to me by HAM enthusiast as a good starter radio. I was fortunate enough to find someone that could help me program this using the BaoFeng cable (not included) and "Chirp" software (also not included but free for download).

This is generally good quality all the way around, except for the included antenna (which I replaced with a better one). I like that it can be programmed for FRS, GRS, and NOAA. I would have liked it to be programmable from the keypad, but that seems above my abilities (if even possible),

We now have 5 of these for family members and are very pleased once they have been configured.

Highly Recommended!

CFH
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on January 10, 2017
The baofeng uv5re radios are great to have they arrived on time and came with everything pictured and in description they are high quality made and not cheap at all. I have purchased a few baofeng radios they are great for listening to emergencies ,radio,flashlight,stress light,etc... you have to buy a channel though if you want to talk on a frequency. It is very easy to install the frequencies, you can watch a video on youtube.
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on April 20, 2016
You know when you buy a Ham radio, you expect to pay money for it. I have in the past owned nothing but Yeasu radios. Handhelds and mobiles. I never use my mobile in my vehicle, in fact I haven't had it on in very long time so I decided to part with it. It was a dual band so I wanted still to have a dual band radio. I saw this and thought "well I can't lose anything trying it". I love this little radio. It's every bit as good as the others I've had in the past. Quick to charge, holds it's charge well and hits all my local repeaters that my Vertex handhelds struggle to hit. The audio quality is comparable with the other handhelds that cost much higher. I used it for a couple of weeks with the stock antenna that comes with the radio. It worked admirably. I purchased an aftermarket antenna for the radio and it's made a fantastic increase in what it is capable of (ExpertPower XP-771). All in all for the money you pay for this radio, it's worth way more. If it breaks it's cheap to replace. Only major issue is the programming of the radio. Not super hard but fiddly. The addition of a programming cable and using the free Chirp software makes things so much easier.

So as someone who needs a radio for emergency purposes (Storm chasing, Emergency Management) would I recommend this radio, I'd give a resounding yes. Don't buy one.. Buy two. At this price having a spare is more than affordable.
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