EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › 2-way radio recommendations?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

2-way radio recommendations?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I'm looking for some 2-way radios so my kids/friends and I can communicate when necessary on the slopes, and have searched the archives. What are current thoughts/recommendations? Here are a couple of options that sound intriguing.

First, a 4-pack combo of the Motorola T4000 (FRS, AAA) and T5000 (GMRS, NiCad)) at Costco, $50 for one pair of each (4 radios total):

http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product...=&topnav=&cat=

Second, the Motorola T7400 (NiMH) from REI, $100 a pair:

http://www.rei.com/online/store/Prod...ory_rn=4500616

Is the better battery system in the T7400 worth the extra money? Are they too big/bulky?

How expensive are the licenses for GMRS, how long do they last, and are they still necessary?
post #2 of 17
We use four midland G-300 Radios.
They claim to have a 10 mile range, but like all the other brands, thats a stretch, especially in the mountains.
I have been on the mountain in Breck & talked to my wife, who was in town shopping.
What ever you decide, make absolutely sure that the ones you pick have PRIVACY CHANNELS! This is a must have at any resort.
post #3 of 17
I would say that the Costco Models are probably going to be more of a hassle then the savings is worth. The only plus is that you get 4...but friends, family maybe? can just get another set or you can check out the T6500 from REI as well. http://www.rei.com/online/store/Prod...ory_rn=4500616 Its $54 so you can get 2 sets (4 total) for the price of the other motorolas from REI (7400)

I have 5950's from last year, http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...58534?v=glance which are about the same size and shape as the 6500's and they're great. Fit in your hands good with gloves, stick it in a chest pocket and you forget its there. Features I have come to love... rechargeable batteries, don't go any other way. Vibrating alert, theres been countless times where I didn't hear the radio, but felt it. and the NOA weather service, I check this all the time when I'm on the slope, hiking, or just want to know the weather. I've always found a channel that came in where ever i was. As far as battery life, I've never had one die, but after a long day on the slopes (i split up from friends while skiing and not hiking) they do need to be tossed back on the charger.

With all that being said, the 7400's do have a higher range, which is never a bad thing. if the money or extra bulk isn't a issue then those might be the way to go, but i can't comment because I haven't actually held them. sometimes in bad conditions the 5miles of my radio seems to have a hard time making it from the base to the summit on the slopes. Its never been too much of a problem, just a little "crackly"

As far as GMRS licenses... uhh, i hope there's isn't any from the gov't here...but i uhh...kinda never got one of those. If you don't want to use the GMRS without the license and you don't want to get license then you're stuck with the family range (.5 watts) AND/or if you are taklign with other people who do not have the GMRS capabilities then you are stuck with the family range again. In this case, the 7400s are irrelevant.

Its snowing in Ithaca right now so i need to throw on shorts and a t-shirt and go for a walk to relish the cold as long as possible..... its going to be 50 tomorrow
post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 
thanks for the replies! do the NiCad batteries work pretty well? have others had problems getting them to hold a charge well in cold conditions on the slopes? do they have "memory" problems?

the Midlands look interesting (4W for $70):

http://www.buy.com/retail/product.as...3&loc=111&sp=1
post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
rayl1964,

how big are the Midland 300s? are they kind of bulky, like the Motorola 7200/7400s, or are they smaller, like the Motorola 6500?
post #6 of 17
I hate radios. I hate using them and I hate when other people are using them in earshot. Set a time to meet at midmountain and be done with it. The stupid electronic burble followed by unintelligible squawking is the worst. Same with cell phones. I once had my phone vibrate when I was in midair at Vail, totally blew my concentration and I yardsaled the landing.
post #7 of 17
I agree. The best radio on the slopes is no radio. Riding up a lift with somebody blabbing on the radio for no real purpose at all...i.e. not to meet anybody, but to talk about his or her last run is almost as bad as riding up a lift with a smoker.

Using radios on the lift should not be allowed as it destroys the serenity and beauty of the ski experience.

My children are grown, but we skied almost every weekend while they were growing up without radios and never had an issue meeting at a pre-arranged location.

Leave the radios in the lodge please.
post #8 of 17
No need to quote the last replies to this thread, as I understand how you feel. However, our first trip to the mountains as a family was with two young children who had never seen snow, mountains, trail maps, or even more frigthening, a white out, which we had on our third day. We became seperated, & the relief I felt when one called on the radio was immense.
I have heard people discuss dinner plans on their radios, and you're right, its annoying.
We only use ours when we absolutely have to.
Its the polite thing to do!
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
thanks for the input, jlb and Gostan, but please don't presume anything about me or how I plan to use the radios. but since you asked (or implied), I plan to use them for emergency, unexpected separations on the slopes. just this past weekend, for example, my son took a left where my daughter and I took a right, and he got confused about which lodge to meet up at. it would have been really nice to have a radio then.

now, if I had posted a thread asking if people like radios on the slopes, that would be a different story ;-)
post #10 of 17
1st: Get NiMah batts if you can. They don't have a memory problem. All NiCads have memory problems, and if you don't have a way to cycle them, they are going to loose capacity. That being said, you can pick up replacement batteries on the Net very cheap.

I've used cheap AudioVox FRS for a few years that didn't come with recharables. I went to Frys and bought a charger and batteries and have had no problems with power since. I would suggest that you get a radio set with a charger though, it's just easier than pulling out the batts and putting them into a charger, one radio at a time.

The radios work great at Mammoth and my wife and I keep in touch quite well. We really only use them when we get split up or are not at the expected meeting point at the expected time. One charge for a 3 day weekend is all that's needed for us.

However, last year I got my wife a cell phone and now we leave the radios home and use the phones. They work over the entire mountain and we can be on opposite sides and we still can get through, something we couldn't do with the FRS 2-ways. Plus, you don't have to hear other conversations and others can't hear yours...

I wouldn't put too much money into these things if you are just using them for split-ups, etc. However, they are a great tool and if used as a tool, and not acting like a tool, you will be happy to have them.

Tony
post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 
thanks, folks. I ended up ordering a 4w Midland model:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...=UTF8&v=glance

plus the rechargeable battery setup (NiMh):

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...=UTF8&v=glance
post #12 of 17
I agree with those that hate the use of radios all over the hill.

I agree that they are a great tool to have in an emergency or in the case of becoming seperated from your kids. My son and I carry them. We leave them off and keep them in an inside pocket to keep them warm. That way we know we'll have a charged battery when we really need to communicate.
post #13 of 17
brains, along with functioning eyes, ears and mouth/vocal chords, are vastly better than technogadgets and widgets.
post #14 of 17
I find it really useful when you go skiing "with" someone who is at a different ability level and you esentially end up skiing seperately the whole time. Keeping in touch via the 2-ways helps keep things a little less solitary. That said, I'm somewhat concerned about that new helmet with the built-in mic and earpiece, I think it will encourage recklessness.
post #15 of 17
jeez, how did humans keep track of each other before 2-way radios became relatively commonplace on SOME ski hills?

amazing.
post #16 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzostrike
jeez, how did humans keep track of each other before 2-way radios became relatively commonplace on SOME ski hills?

amazing.
Probably the same way they did before phones, cell phones, email, FORUMS!, Fax machines, etc..

If not for technology, I'd probably be farming, like my ancestors.

How we choose to use technology is the issue, as with people who try to use cell phones & drive, but don't possess the ability to chew gum & walk at the same time.
post #17 of 17
[QUOTE Originally posted by Crank ]
I agree with those that hate the use of radios all over the hill.

I agree that they are a great tool to have in an emergency or in the case of becoming seperated from your kids. My son and I carry them. We leave them off and keep them in an inside pocket to keep them warm. That way we know we'll have a charged battery when we really need to communicate.
[/quote]
Okay, call me slow.... but.....if you want to call your son in an emergency, how does he know to switch his radio on ???!!!!: :
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › 2-way radio recommendations?