Open main menu


Top Picks

How we choose: The best radios highlighted here were selected based on 22 reviews of 14 products. Our top picks are those that are readily-available in the United States and have received the highest overall ratings from reviewers.

How we test: Trailspace is powered entirely by our community of readers. The reviews posted here reflect the real-world experiences of outdoor enthusiasts just like you.

If you've used a radio that you think should be listed here, please share your experience.

Disclosure: Trailspace never accepts payment for gear reviews, product placement, or editorial coverage. When you buy through affiliate links on our site, Trailspace may earn a small commission, which helps cover the costs of running the site.

Etón Scorpion

user rating: 4 of 5 (2 reviews)

So far so good for this little unit. Overall unit is exactly as advertised and comes equipped with a solar panel for charging, as well as a hand crank. The unit comes with 3 bands, AM/FM and NOAA Weather Band. Uses a digital tuning source for all. The buttons are rubberized or should say rubber sealed and can be a little tricky, but I can see why the unit is claimed to be splash proof. Overall the unit is built rather well, and doesn't feel cheap. The bottle opener could have been something a little more useful, such as a signaling mirror, or thermometer, etc.

Read more: Etón Scorpion reviews (2)

Grundig Aviator G6

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

This is a tough little radio with pretty good reception for its size (3" x just under 5"). It has a great feature set with the ability to pick up Air (Aviation) Band (from 117 to 137MHz), Short Wave (2000 KHz to 29999KHz), FM stations, AM Stations, LW Stations, as well as the ability to tune in SSB and listen to some HAM Operators.

Reasons to Buy

  • Size
  • Reception
  • Low battery consumption

Reasons to Avoid

  • Bleed over of FM stations into Air Band

I received this radio as a gift several years ago.  It has been very durable during that time.  It basically is as good today as the day I received it.   It is a very easily portable radio, measures 3" x 5" x 1" or so, and weighing in at around 9 ounces with batteries installed and wrist lanyard on.   This radio picks up several different bands of radio.  Starting with LW at 150 KHz and it runs constant all the way through the SW bands to 29999 KHz.  You can also pick up FM stations starting as low as 76 MHz through to the normal 108.1 MHz, and Aircraft band from 117 MHZ to 137 MHz.

Read more: Grundig Aviator G6 review (1)

Grundig Mini400

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (4 reviews)

I bought this from a Canadian electronics store, my second one of this type after misplacing my last one. But you can find it at REI or elsewhere in the US. This uses 2 AAA batteries, is very slim, and I find, powerful. I use it for sanity keeping at work, but also take it hiking and camping to play with the shortwave aspect. I have listened to Radio Free China (propaganda), Radio Havana (music), the BBC, amongst others... Dusk is the best time to catch the most listening options. It has a clock, has an alarm, which is useful, and can be locked into on or off, which is handy for jamming in a pack.

Read more: Grundig Mini400 reviews (4)

Motorola Talkabout GMRS /FRS Radio with DPS Option

user rating: 4 of 5 (1 review)

These radios were great. Used them as a scoutmaster and for broadcast radio service. Now trying to find a couple more. The one I'm looking for has the AA battery back OEM rechargeable battery pack, gray with black top panel, black stock antenna w/o desk charger option. Used them for years on the day job and weekend scout trips. What was great—no computer needed to program them. Got one from a scanner shop in San Carlos, CA, the other at REI. Worked in the radio broadcast field in the SF Bay area and was able to license them with my work site license and sub license them with my GMRS call. They were great. The AA battery pack was great and the radio was easy to use for my troop leaders and scouts alike. Taught guys radio stuff too. And finally wore them out doing public safety comm support.

Reasons to Buy

  • Easy to program and use on the fly
  • Great for camping and for tweens and teaching radio to troop members
  • Wore like iron

Reasons to Avoid

  • AA Battery pack wore out
  • Hard to install/uninstall
  • No desk charger with this unit!

Used them for events, scout troop campouts. The kids that were tweens were my family members. The county sheriff's officer had a fit. "What were little kids doing with high end radio??" At the campground, thought the radios were hot? Had the paperwork licenses, my company business cards, and my boss in San Francisco's card, my press credentials from NBC NYC headquarters with 50 Rock address. Next day he and his kids came up fishing and he picked my brain about a radio system for his explorer post fire/rescue crew. 73's Darryl

Read more: Motorola Talkabout GMRS /FRS Radio with DPS Option review (1)

Etón FRX3 Radio

user rating: 3.5 of 5 (1 review)

Great for outdoor activities, picnics, lakeside, power outages.

Reasons to Buy

  • Multiple functions
  • Dump cell charger
  • Good sound

Reasons to Avoid

  • Bulky
  • Poorly designed light flashlight switch

This is a great, compact radio for the little moment you want to add music to and not worry about where the power is coming from. The volume gets pretty loud and the sound is pretty good. A super useful tool for power outages and natural disaster issues, a great comfort to know I can charge my phone in an emergency.  This is not a backpacking radio. It may be splash proof, but I wouldn't test it. The knobs for adjusting tuning and volume are protected but the button for the flashlight is not, will have it inside a bag bringing it from one place to another only to notice the flashlight has turned on, draining all the power from the earlier charge.

Read more: Etón FRX3 Radio review (1)

More Reviews of Radios

Trailspace reviewers have shared 22 reviews of 14 different radios.

Show All »

or add yours

Other Types of Electronics

Find more electronics reviewed in these related categories:




+9 more types

Review Your Outdoor Gear

If you've found this site helpful — or if we've missed something important — please consider paying it forward by some of your favorite outdoor gear.

Why? From professional gearheads to outdoor novices, everyone has an important point of view to contribute. will support the outdoor community and help others find the best gear.

Trailspace reviewers are outdoor enthusiasts like you: hikers, climbers, paddlers, backcountry skiers, and trail runners who share our experiences with the gear and clothing we rely on to get outside. Learn more about Trailspace