The Best Compact CB Radio

Last updated: May 1, 2018

Best Compact CB Radio

How do you find the best compact CB radio? Today's market offers some amazing older models that have been selling off the shelves for generations as well as more modern models with innovative features.

It can take time to gain an understanding of all CB radios currently offered and then select the one that best fits your individual needs. This guide is designed to speed up the process by delivering a few honest CB radio reviews alongside valuable information that will help you find a quality compact radio in as little time as possible.

Best Compact CB Radio

Compact CB Radio
Features
Our Rating
  • 10 weather alert channels
  • Crystal clear transmission
  • Scan feature

  • Weighs just two pounds
  • Instant emergency channel function
  • Squelch control

  • 10 weather alert channels
  • Battery pack included
  • Favorite channel storage


Compact CB Radio Reviews

Our compact CB radio reviews are designed to highlight the pros and cons for some of the leading radios on the market today. Use this information to identify the best compact CB radio for your intended use.

Cobra 75WXST

Cobra 75WXST

If you want to take compact to the extreme without moving to a handheld CB radio, select the Cobra 75WXST model. Rather than being composed of a radio box and microphone, the radio is contained entirely within the microphone.

If you're guessing that you sacrifice some features if you select this super compact design, you're right. The sacrifices are a much smaller display and a lower quality speaker than you would get with a larger model.

Users willing to accept those limitations are rewarded with crystal clear reception and transmission. This ease of communication is what really matters with any radio, so this unit is still in the running for the best compact CB radio.

Things we liked:

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    10 weather alert channels
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    Crystal clear transmission
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    Scan feature

Things we didn't like:

  • Limited range
  • minus
    Speaker is lacking in quality

Uniden PRO505XL

Uniden PRO505XL

Even though the Uniden PRO505XL is a compact radio that weighs just two pounds, it has an oversized display that is easy to read. It doesn't offer the 10 weather alert channels that are offered on many larger CB radios, but it does allow you to quickly tune into channel nine, which is the designated emergency alert channel for CB radios.

We were impressed with the extra speaker jacks offered on this unit. The built-in speaker isn't all that great, but you can plug in a higher-quality speaker to improve your sound quality. You can also plug in a public-address speaker if you want to turn your compact CB radio into a public announcement system.

There are also a few advanced features on this Uniden CB radio, including squelch control to keep static to a minimum. You can also check the strength of incoming transmissions, and the radio offers an indicator light for this feature.

Things we liked:

  • check
    Weighs just two pounds
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    Instant emergency channel function
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    Public address system compatible
  • check
    Squelch control
  • check
    Easy-to-read display

Things we didn't like:

  • Range has its limits
  • minus
    Lacks scan feature
  • minus
    Low-quality speaker

Midland 75-822

Midland 75 822

The Midland 75-822 is a handheld model that could easily win a contest for the top rated compact CB radio. It comes with a battery pack that holds six AA batteries as well as an adapter that allows you to charge your radio from your vehicle.

There are other CB radios that offer more impressive reception quality, but this is a feature-packed radio that weighs just over six ounces. It comes with a squelch feature to cut down on static, and the noise-limiting feature helps as well.

When you turn this radio off, the last channel that you listen to is saved so that you pick up where you left off for your next radio session. You can use the scan feature to sort through the channels, stopping for a few seconds when activity is detected. For fast access to your favorite channels, you can store five of them right on the radio.

Things we liked:

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    10 weather alert channels
  • check
    Battery pack included
  • check
    Mobile charger included
  • check
    Favorite channel storage
  • check
    Squelch control

Things we didn't like:

  • Unimpressive reception

Buying Guide

While the best compact CB radios will take up much less space than other models, it should still offer the features that you need for effective functionality. What are those features? It depends on how you intend to use your radio.

Compact CB Radio

For casual use, you may look for an easy-to-use CB radio that offers the full range of 40 channels. The reception and ability to control static and background interference is also important because you want to make sure that you clearly hear all incoming transmissions.

If you're a truck driver or will otherwise use your radio for professional purposes, you may look for some advanced features like RF gain control. You may also look for a compact radio that comes with a high-quality microphone and a jack that allows you to plug in a public-announcement speaker.

Basic CB Radio Etiquette

There are some basic rules that you should follow once you start using your CB radio and start transmitting messages:

  • Don't play music over the radio or go off on long rants that last more than a few minutes. It's generally expected that each person will talk no more than five minutes at a time, and even that is a long time over a CB radio.
  • Pay attention to the timing for your transmissions. If you continually talk over other users, you will quickly become an annoyance.
  • Study up on CB lingo. There are a lot of terms that are used over the CB that will leave you lost and confused if you aren't up to date with the unique language. You will also get a lot more attention from other users if you can use these terms correctly.

Now that you understand compact CB radios a bit more, it's time to read our CB radio reviews and decide which radio is best for you.

Conclusion

If we had to pick the best compact CB radio on the market today, we would select the Cobra 75WXST. It's one of the smallest radios available and offers impressive reception and transmission sound quality.

Visit Guide

The Best CB Radios of 2018

We've create a buyer's guide that will tell you everything you need to know to buy the best CB radio.

About the Author

Brian Wallace decided to put his fascination with radio devices to good use and started WalkieTalkieCentral.com, hoping that his knowledge on the topic will be helpful to others.

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