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7 Best CB Radios of 2020 – Powerful CB Radio Reviews

In modern society, we are surrounded by various up-to-date mobile devices, such as cell phones, owing to the development of hi-tech. Therefore, many people think that we don’t need CB radios as much as before. However, things are different here.

There are still many professionals like truckers, firefighters who prefer CB radios more when dealing with emergencies. This is because these radios not only provide the fastest way but also are equipped with updated technologies that can be comparable to smart-phones.

You may be interested in CB radios, but have little knowledge to select a good one. Also, there are too many options and information available, which may cost a lot of time to find a favorable radio. Well, don’t worry. Here are our top picks for the best CB radios to help you choose the right one.

Best CB Radio Comparison Chart

Product

Channels

Dimensions

Our Rating

Best CB Radio Cobra 29Lx

Cobra 29Lx Professional CB Radio

AM/Weather

7.25 x 9.25 x 2.25 inches

Best CB Radio Uniden PRO505XL

Uniden PRO505XL 40-Channel CB Radio

AM

12.88 x 6.03 x 2.31 inches

Best CB Radio President Electronics

President Electronics AM/SSB CB Radio

AM/Weather/SSB

6.69 x 5.91 x 2.05 inches

Best CB Radio Midland

Midland 1001LWX 40 Channel Mobile CB Radio

AM/Weather

9.8 x 9.2 x 2.5 inches

Best CB Radio Uniden Bearcat 880

Uniden Bearcat 880 40-Channel CB Radio

AM/Weather/SSB

7.25 x 7.5 x 2.25 inches

Best CB Radio Uniden PC78LTX

Uniden PC78LTX 40-Channel Trucker's CB Radio

AM/PA

15.35 x 3.35 x 8.11 inches

Best CB Radio AnyTone AT-5555N

AnyTone AT-5555N 10 Meter CB Radio for Truck

AM/Weather/FM/SSB

11.02 x 2.36 x 9.84 inches

The Best CB Radio Reviews 2020

1. Cobra 29Lx Professional CB Radio – Best CB Radio Ever Made

OUR TOP PICK
Best CB Radio cobra
Cobra 29Lx Professional CB Radio
  • Easy to Read - Daytime and nighttime driving made easy with the selectable 4-color LCD display in blue, red, green and amber. Adjust the color and brightness to enhance your drive.
  • NOAA Weather Channels - Be the first to know of incoming hazards or changing weather with instant access to NOAA weather channels 24 hours a day.
  • Weather & Alert Scan - Automatically tune into the strongest weather channel and alert tone available to catch every important weather notice. With the 29LX you won't miss important information while scanning through channels.

Many seasoned CB radio users are big fans of Cobra because it produces great and feature-rich CB radios. Cobra 29LX is one of the most popular models that can meet almost all the expectations you may have on a CB radio.

A cool and fancy feature we like about this model is the backlight display. This radio is armed with a backlight to help you read the information on the display. And there are four different colors about the display, allowing you to choose from freely. It offers you multiple choices when ensuring an explicit message-reading.

Besides, it can access to NOAA weather channels. With this channel, you will receive all weather predictions from almost the whole country 24 hours a day. That means you can acquire the real-time news about storm broadcasts or heat waves so that you will be aware of these terrible weather conditions in advance and find out how to keep yourselves safe.

Another worth-mentioning thing is that it provides you clear enough messages from both nearby and far away areas. Firstly, it has a PA function and PA horn, which you can use as a PA speaker. With it, you can broadcast your messages by tuning the sounds up. Apart from that, an added dynamic feature can enhance your mic voice to allow your signals to have a more distinct message. Also, the RF gain serves to capture those distant and weak signals. So with these three functions combined, you don’t need to worry about the quality of messages.

However, the Bluetooth function defects you because it is a feature that needs more improvement.

All in all, if you seldom use the Bluetooth function, you are recommended to buy this radio for nearly all-rounded design.

Cobra 29Lx CB Radio Operation Manual

Pros

  • Multiple-color display– dim the display color freely
  • Alarm– keep you safe
  • FR gain– capture the weak and distant signals
  • PA function– broadcast the messages
  • Weather alert channel– know weather conditions in advance

Cons

  • Defect Bluetooth– can’t be controlled conveniently
  • Constant battery drain – waste power when switching it off

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2. Uniden PRO505XL 40-Channel CB Radio- Budget Pick

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Best CB Radio uniden
  • Uniden’s Professional Series PRO505XL is a compact and affordable full 40 channel CB radio featuring CB and Public Address functions with an easy-to-read large backlit LCD display.
  • This compact durable radio is easy to use and will fit into virtually any vehicle with its compact size.
  • Monitor your transmit power and check the relative strength of incoming transmissions with the built-in Signal/RF Power Indicator, and use the public address function to be heard outside your vehicle with an optional external PA speaker.

If you are a beginner of CB radios, we will recommend you Uniden PRO505XL that is not only economical but also easy to operate. Unlike many other CB radios, this one has a small black plastic body, making it a nice appearance and lightweight. So this is a perfect choice if you wanna have a try.

As we mentioned above, this unit is small and exquisite because it is in small size and has little cute buttons. So it won’t take up too much space in your cabin. Also, it takes fewer efforts to operate the radio since it is designed simply.

Another feature we like about this radio is that there are a PA socket and an external speaker jack in its backside, allowing you to plug into a PA speaker and an external speaker. By combing the functions of these two speakers, you can experience a better sound quality.

Besides, an amazing feature is that the small model has a quite large screen that is convenient for you to read all the information on it. The backlight is a bright orange that is eye-catching enough to draw your attention even in the dark. And the digital words are big and black. The strong contrast caused by these two colors boost the readability largely.

Additionally, this radio comes with an instant channel 9. So you can contact with others immediately when emergencies happen, enhancing protections when you are far away from home.

But, you may encounter some quality problems months later because the construction material is easy to break.

In a word, since you are a beginner, you want a satisfying user experience rather than a tough long-lasting item. So you should have a try.

Uniden PRO505XL CB Radio Operation Manual

Pros

  • Large display – easy to read in the dark
  • Instant channel 9– deal with emergencies better
  • An external speaker jack– can facilitate the sound by plugging an external speaker
  • Small size– save spaces of cabin
  • 40 channels– more choices

Cons

  • No Bluetooth– can’t connect with other devices conveniently
  • Poor quality of mic– may not long-lasting

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3. President Electronics MC KINLEY CB Radio – Best SSB CB Radio

Best CB Radio President Electronics
  • 40 channels AM/SSB, Channel rotary switch, Volume adjustment and ON/OFF
  • Manual squelch and ASC, Multi-functions LCD display, Digital S-meter
  • ANL filter, NB and HI-CUT; Channels and memories scan; 3 Memories

If you are a professional, this could be your radio. Mckinley is popular among both professional CB radio users and amateurs because it is finely-designed and technologically-equipped.

The first and foremost feature is that it comes with an automatic squelch control. With this function, all the unneeded noises and weak signals can be filtered to pave the way for those strong signals. Besides, you can adjust the level according to your preferences. So you can get the best sound.

Another feature that can’t be ignored is that there is a switchable talkback system. That allows you to communicate with other drivers flexibly.

Something else we like is that it comes with weather alert channels too. This is a very practical function because you may spend lots of time on the road if you are a trucker or firefighter. So with this alert channel, you could know the weather conditions in time and avoid being affected by terrible weather like storms.

Turning to the LCD. It features an LCD in case you need to find out a flashlight to read the information. That gives you much freedom at night. And there are 3 colors for you to choose from.

However, there is a disadvantage too. Although it comes with RF gain, the RF gain knob is absent, causing some inconvenience.

In a word, this model is multifunctional for you to deal with your work effectively. This radio can meet all the demands coming from a professional.

President Electronics CB Radio Operation Manual

Pros

  • Single side-band– more powerful signals
  • LCD– provide lightness at night
  • 3 colors for display– more choices
  • SWR calibration– boost antenna system
  • Automatic squelch control– eliminate background noises

Cons

  • No RF gain knob– inconvenient
  • Defective squelch control from time to time– inconstant signal filter

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4. Midland 1001LWX 40 Channel Compact CB Radio

Best CB Radio midland
  • Mobile CB With Built-In Weather Scan
  • Adjustable Rf Gain Control To Adjust Sensitivity Range
  • Weather Scan Instantly Finds Local Weather Channel

Midland 1001LWX is another tolerant CB radio for most users. It is not only multifunctional enough to appeal to seasoned users but also user-friendly enough to attract novices. What’s more, if you are a truck driver who needs highway information, this is the perfect option.

The first key feature is that this radio is very easy to operate. Even if you are an amateur or beginner, you don’t need to worry about how to use it. It is a compact design that features an easy installation process. You can install it in your cabins easily because the installation hardware is packed in the package. And there is a front panel which is simply equipped with a locking mic connector locking tightly to the CB.

Another feature we like is that it comes with a weather tracker that links to the NOAA weather radio. So it can automatically scan the weather update channels available to provide weather conditions in your area in advance. You can always be aware of the coming terrible weather information to get yourselves prepared.

The signal-receiving system is also well designed. There is a squelch function helping to eliminate all these interfering background noises. Meanwhile, RF gain is also included to capture those distant and faint signals. So it ensures clear communication.

However, the downside is that there is no adjustable dimmer for light. That could be annoying when using the light at night.

To sum up, although sometimes your eyes could be hurt by the strong lightness in the dark, it provides you enough favorable features to solve most problems on the road.

Midland 1001LWX CB Radio Operation Manual

Pros

  • Compact package– save space
  • Weather alert channel– know weather conditions in advance
  • FR gain– capture the weak and distant signals
  • Easy process– friendly to beginners
  • Clear sound– high quality of communication

Cons

  • No adjustable dimmer for light– could hurt eyes
  • Reset channel– bring inconvenience

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5. Uniden Bearcat 880  – Best Long Range CB Radio

Best CB Radio uniden
  • Features. 40-channel operation. NOAA weather channel access.
  • Public address feature. Emergency channel can be automatically available if you choose. 7-color backlit display with easy-to-read large type.
  • Dimmer switch lets you change the display intensity from day to night. Built-in SWR meter. Integrated diagnostic modes.

Uniden Bearcat 880 has a fancy design to attract both seasoned CB radio users and beginners. It has multiple functions and very good sound quality to allows you to use in any outside condition. If you are wondering an all-rounded CB radio, this is the perfect option.

One of its amazing features is that it has a very big backlight display, helping you to read messages clearly when the light is gloomy or just at night. To be surprising, there are seven different colors about the backlight for you to choose from. Also, you can adjust the brightness of the display with a built-in dimmer flexibly.

Something else we like about this radio is that this radio can access to NOAA weather condition stations, providing you the real-time weather reports and updates so that you can obtain the latest weather conditions earlier. That is significant when you are working outsides where the weather is changeable.

And there is an instant channel 9 too, allowing you to set the radio up when there happen emergencies. So you don’t need to worry about being attacked by unpredictable events like mudslides.

Additionally, it comes with an automatic noise limiter that is usually called ANL in short. With the ANL function, all these background noises and static noises can be muted so that you can enjoy a clearer sound. What’s more, you control the high and low mic voice by the built-in controllers.

On the other hand, the fancy backlight display may bother those who like simple and pithy display designs.

In a nutshell, if you don’t mind the garish backlight colors, this model is the right one for you to choose from.

Uniden Bearcat 880 CB Radio Operation Manual

Pros

  • Large display – easy to read in the dark
  • Instant channel 9– deal with emergencies better
  • 7 backlight colors– more fancy choices
  • ANL– boost the sound quality
  • NOAA weather channels– know weather conditions in advance

Cons

  • No Bluetooth– can’t connect with other devices conveniently
  • Inferior display quality– may go bad easily

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6. Uniden PC78LTX – Best CB Radio for Truckers

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Best CB Radio Uniden PC78LTX
  • Hit the road in trucker's style with the Uniden PC78LTX CB Radio. Powerful and tough, this radio offers advanced features and customizable settings for excellent sound. With this radio, you never have to miss another transmission, even when you are driving.
  • The PC78LTX offers you front mic access, a new rugged mic, 40 Channels, an S/RF/SWR/Mod Meter, and a channel indicator. Also included is a channel selector, a TX/RX indicator, instant channel 9, dim control, noise blanker, RF gain control, a PA mode, mic gain control, and a Hi Cut Function.
  • Microphone Settings for Best Sound: This radio's multiple adjustments allow you to fine tune the signal and sound, for excellent clarity. Change the squelch control settings and the ANL/Noise Blanker option to reduce static and enjoy clear sound. Adjust the microphone gain to control the mic sensitivity.

If you are searching for a typical long-standing CB radio, we would recommend you Uniden PC78LTX. This product is designed for strong functions and outstanding durability. If you don’t want to buy a new one after a long time, you should take this.

To begin with, it comes with instant channel 9 and 19. with instant channel 9, you can connect with others when emergent events like fire happen. And if you are a truck driver or you just need to drive on the highway, the radio can provide you with needed highway conditions via channel 19. Therefore, this function can keep you safe when you are outsides.

Besides, there is an integrated SWR meter, helping you to tune in the CB antenna so that you can hear the clearest sound.

Also, there are many wonderful adjustment settings, with which you can adjust the squelch control to receive the strongest signals. Plus, it comes with the RF gain features too. By adjusting this, you can also receive some wanted but distant or weak signals.

Something else appealing is the ANL. So you don’t need to be bothered by bad sounds because the automatic noise limiter can filter these annoying noises away. That means all the background noises and static noises can be reduced effectively to ensure the best sound quality.

However, the disadvantage is that sometimes it could not tune, causing some troubles for users.

All in all, although there are small flaws, it is still an ideal model for most users. There are sufficient functions and it is durable.

If you are interested in the CB radio for truckers, you can read our article: Best CB Radios for Truckers in 2020.

Uniden PC78LTX CB Radio Operation Manual

Pros

  • Instant channel 9 and 19– in case of emergencies
  • SWR meter– better signal receiving
  • RF gain– receive far-away signals
  • ANL– boost the sound quality
  • Multiple controllers– easy to operate

Cons

  • No NOAA weather alerts– hard to know the real-time weather conditions
  • Not tune– cause some inconvenience

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7. AnyTone AT-5555N – Best 10 Meter CB Radio

Best CB Radio AnyTone AT-5555N
  • The default frequency 28.000-29.700Mhz 10 meter Amateur Radio with big LCD panel, users can see more clear diaplay.Big rubber key easy for operation.Max AM: 12W / FM: 30W / SSB: 30W(PEP) , power adjustable by knob
  • Please send the email to seller (us) if you need the expanding frequency instruction documents. Radio Dimensions (in mm) 250(W) x280(L) x 60(H);Weight 1.5kg, Vey good high power cb radio/10 meter radio
  • Vey good high power 10 meter Amatuer radio. Big LCD displays frequency and all kinds of information FM、AM、USB、LSB、PA mode Frequency Tuning Step 100Hz、1KHz、10KHz、100KHz、1MHz

AnyTone AT-5555N is a less pretentious model among all these good products in the market. However, it has many practical functions and also is easy to use. So if you are a beginner or you just hate complex operations, this unit is your ideal option.

Firstly, it has a wonderful LCD that helps you to see the screen effortlessly. And when you are driving on the road at night, it is convenient for you to read the information on the display. So you don’t have to focus on it, which could be unsafe during driving.

Besides, the radio has a built-in SSB mode. So by switching to this mode, you can boost your radio range to transmit at about 12-watt so that you can enjoy a very fast and wide transmission, meanwhile, there is less interference.

Additionally, it features ANL too. This function helps to filter these unwanted noises automatically. Thus, you won’t need to worry about being interfered with by some engine noises or other annoying noises.

Something else you may like is the beeping voice prompt. With the help of this feature, you will know that there comes a message without turn your head to see the display. That avoids some troubles when your eyes are busy focusing on your work.

But, the disadvantage is that this model is built in relatively poor quality, with interior touching experience.

In conclusion, if you don’t care too much about the texture, you can have a try because it is functional and inexpensive.

AnyTone AT-5555N CB Radio Operation Manual

Pros

  • LCD– helps to read in the dark
  • SWR protection– better signal receiving
  • SSB mode– increase transmitting range
  • ANL– boost the sound quality
  • Beeping voice prompt– convenient to use

Cons

  • No NOAA weather alerts– hard to know the real-time weather conditions
  • Poor quality– not long-lasting

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What to Consider When Buying a CB Radio?

Best CB Radio

What is a CB radio? And how many types of it? What are the benefits of using it? Let’s think about these questions briefly – and after that, we can look at the factors you need to consider when choosing one.

CB radio stands for The Citizens Band Radio Service that is an essential communication tool used mostly on the road. Generally, according to the law, all CB radios transmit with the same 4 watts of power. With a CB radio, users can not only get road conditions as well as emergency alerts but also communicate with others by a short-distance radio system.

Also, there are about four basic types of this radio, including mobile CB radio, all-in-handset CB radio, handheld CB radio, and base station CB radio. They are targeting different professions with different features.

Although this tool seems to be an old-fashioned item, the fact is that CB radios equipped with advanced technology provide users the necessary information efficiently. This is super important when you are in a remote area where there may not be cellphone signals. CB radio can save you.

However, choosing a suitable CB radio in the market could be challenging because there are always too many products and each of them has a very detailed introduction. You may be bothered by specific searching.

Now let’s look at some of the brief and key points to consider when choosing.

  • SquelchControl

One of the most important functions you need to take into consideration is how effectively a CB radio can mute the background noise. Sometimes you can’t hear clearly from the radio if there is no signal-filter function. Well, the squelch control in the CB radio prevents distortion and unwanted noise coming in unless correct signals are achieved. Thanks to the squelch feature, distant, less powerful signals can be silenced to make room for the strong signals nearing you. It would even mute weak signals so that the stronger ones can go through without efforts.

  • Automatic Noise Limiter

The auto noise limiter is called ANL, which works as a supplementary function to guarantee the good quality of the radio reception. It reduces the unnecessary sounds, including engine noise, static and background noise in terms of active electrical environments, such as truck cabs.

  • Backlight Display

Reading the information on the display is a normal thing you do when using a CB radio. However, the display screen is usually a small one that you need some effort to focus on. So if there is a backlight, you just don’t need to read it with the help of a separate flashlight. That feature eliminates unnecessary inconvenience, especially at night.

Plus, some of these backlight functions can dim the brightness so that the light won’t damage your eyes. Namely, you can adjust it to adapt to different environments.

  • RF Gain

In terms of the signal receivers of a CB radio, there are two opposite functional features. One is the squelch that we mentioned before, which is responsible for blocking those distant and weak signals; the other is FR gain that is in charge of capturing the far-away signals.

As a complementary function to the squelch, RF gain allows you to know some emergency events happening miles away.

  • Weather Capability

Since CB radio users are always working outside, weather capability is thought of as a key function. That feature allows the radio to access the local NOAA stations to receive weather updates, helping you know the real-time weather conditions in advance. That is important to safety.

  • Instant channel 9 and channel 19

These two channels rank the top two places among all the channels because they provide you some necessary information when you are using it outdoors. Channel 9 is responsible for receiving emergency reports, and the other is in charge of reporting highway conditions.

  • Single-side band

A single-side band is also called SSB for short. Some CB radios support SSB mode. As we all know, the transmitting range of standard CB radio channels is at 4-watt. While, SSB mode allows you to transmit at 12-watt, increasing the transmitting range and decreasing interference at the same time.

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Many great options

As you can see, there are many great CB radios on the market to suit almost any requirement. If you have decided you’d like to purchase one but are having trouble choosing, any of the picks in our review would be a great place to start your search.

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