Have you ever been on a camping trip or family vacation where cellphone service is either spotty or non-existent? If you answered yes, then you know how staying in touch with the other members of your family or group can quickly go from unreliable to impossible right when you need it the most.
This is where a set of FRS radios such as the Cobra CXR 925 MicroTalk really comes in handy. Not only are these radios great for keeping in touch with other members of your party when adventuring, but they also really come in handy during natural disasters when the power and internet goes down. The CXR 925 is especially useful for emergencies since it has an integrated 10 channel NOAA weather band radio receiver.
The feature that makes Cobra walkie-talkies stand out compared to other FRS radio manufacturers is its “Rewind-Say-Again” capability. This is essentially a voicemail system built into a handheld radio. It automatically records every incoming transmission from everyone talking on the frequency your radio is set to. It maintains a 20 second rotating log of your most recent incoming calls. Personally, I have never seen this feature implemented by any of the other FRS manufacturers, and it’s one of the most helpful I have ever seen. If it were up to me, I would want this feature built into every model of FRS radio.
Another great feature is the ability to adjust the power output level. This allows you to save power if you are going to be talking to someone very close by, such as your friend that is only a few hundred yards ahead of you in another car. I also like these radios’ vibrate feature that allows you to be silently notified when someone is trying to communicate with you, just like your cellphone. If you want to go hands free with these radios, you can easily activate the voice activated transmit mode (VOX). This set of radios comes with a drop in charger that is capable of charging both radios simultaneously. My only complaint here is the lack of a way to easily charge these radios from a car.
My main complaint when it comes to FRS radios doesn’t really have anything to do with this radio at all. It’s more of a problem with how all FRS radios are marketed and advertised. This involves stating that the radio has a maximum range of 35 miles. Yes this radio does have the capability to communicate up to 35 miles to another person using an identical or similar radio. My problem with that statement is that there are only a few highly unlikely scenarios that you will find yourself in where you could have even a slight chance to successfully achieve that kind of communication range with a pair of FRS radios. If you want any chance of achieving the advertised 35-mile max range, you are going to need to be in a hot air balloon, on a mountain peak, or up in space.
Down on the ground in the real world, you can expect 1 to 5 miles of reliable communication range from this or any pair of FRS radios. If you are in a dense city or heavily wooded mountainous terrain, don’t count on anything over one mile range. If you are in a relatively flat suburban neighborhood, you can expect 2-3 mile range. If located on flat open terrain, a lake, or ocean you might be able to get up to 5-mile range.
All things considered, these FRS radios are some of the coolest I have ever used. The batteries easily last all day and the “voicemail” feature is extremely handy. If you are ever in the market for a set of walkie-talkies to use for outdoor adventures or emergency preparedness, the CXR 925 MicroTalk from Cobra is definitely a great choice.
Made in China