Monday, November 9, 2015

Motorola Talkabout - T400 Two Way Radio Review


Rugged, Packed with Features and ready for an Adventure

Whether taking your family on a camping expedition or going backpacking alone, a set of walkie-talkies is a highly essential item. There are an assortment of two-way radios in the market, and most of the new ones have a wide range of frequency options, with some of them weighing less than half a pound. It is here where the Motorola Two-way Radios come in. These small, but effective devices can help you keep in touch with the outside world where cell phone services dare not tread.

The Motorola Talkabout-T400 Two Way Radio.

The Motorola Talkabout-T400 Two Way Radio is an excellent camping and hiking walkie-talkie, and is a necessary item, perfect for camping and outdoor family excursions. It has a durable, light, waterproof body, and is packed full of features. In terms of price and functionality, it is good value for money.

Features

The radio has 22 channels to choose from, including GMRS (General Mobile Radio Service) and FRS (Family Radio Service) frequencies. It also has 121 privacy codes, which totals to 2,662 combination options, making it really easy to locate an open channel network. If you are still facing difficulties in finding a frequency, then you have the option of running a channel scan. You also have access to private channels and hands-free operations. The Motorola Talkabout T-400 can also access NOAA weather channels**, and if there is a local emergency, your radio will signal you.

There are three ways to operate your radio. First, there is the option of utilizing the NiMH batteries (rechargeable), which you can use it for close to eight and a half hours. Alternately, you can plug in the tiny USB cable to an electrical outlet, or hook it up to your automobile adaptor, or connect it to your computer. You can also use the three AA batteries on the go for up to 21 hours.

It also allows keeping your hands free while hiking or climbing any rocky terrain. In other words, the iVOX / VOX acts like a speakerphone and facilitates hands-free communication.

Another interesting feature is the QT or the Quiet Talk facility, which permits nonstop communication with other Motorola radios that share this feature. It can filter any annoying transmissions from non-Motorola radios, particularly in busy and high traffic zones. The T-400 also has the facility of communicating with any radio that has the FRS/GMRS feature, irrespective of its brand, as long as it shares matching channel and privacy codes.

The Talkabout T-400 has a backlit screen in addition to displaying valuable information. The battery meter will notify you when you need to recharge the radio. The built-in LED flashlight guarantees that you will not have to worry during unforeseen emergencies or power failures. Alternately, you can also use three AA batteries (to be purchased separately) in case of an emergency.

The unit, as mentioned earlier, also has the SCAN feature to identify which channels are in use. It can also be programmed to transmit a distinct tone when you finish your conversation. In other words, it would be like replying "Roger" or "Over" after you complete your conversation. You can also personalize the radio to notify you when your batteries are low. There is also the keypad lock facility that prevents your personalized settings from being accidentally changed. It also prevents the user from accidentally pressing the keys while on the go

Help & Support

Although the Motorola Talkabout T-400 comes with a one-year warranty, the company could have increased that period, as it is much shorter than most comparable devices.

If you need any help with your T-400, you can always access the website and download any manuals or FAQs. Alternately, you can also contact support agents by email or via phone.

Price Range

The Motorola Talkabout T-400 is priced at around $69.00 (inclusive of a discount of $11.00 on shipping) at Amazon.com.  However, you are likely to get an used one at a reduced price.

Customer Reviews (Amazon.com)

The average overall performance points for the T-400, collected from over 50 users is 4.0 out of 5 stars on Amazon.com.

Pros

The Motorola Talkabout T-400 albeit having a tough exterior, is compact and handy in size. The rubberized grips are easy to hold, with the controls and buttons providing a solid feel. The unit does not appear cheap and the yellow color of the family model makes it very easy to spot. The volume comes forth as good with fairly loud and clear communication.

Cons

However, there are a few aspects where it does not measure up. For example, although it specifies a coverage area of about 35 miles, the actual range will vary depending on terrain and conditions. It should be noted that this range is over calm waters or open plains, and if you are using it in the mountains, you can expect a range of only around two miles or less. While most users also complained that the batteries lasted for just about a day, some users felt that a charging base or cradle, would have made a huge difference. Few users also felt that the unit could have done with an SOS function as well.

Personal Review
I am a big fan of mobile phones and don’t really fancy the walkie-talkie very much. Maybe it is because of the multiple functions that cell phones provide. Truth told, I find it a bit comical to watch people stick something the size of a small brick in to their ear. However, after researching the entire week on the internet, my findings have completely altered my perception about two-way radios. For someone who loves the outdoors, the T400 appears to be pure bliss. 

In short, the Motorola Talkabout T400 Rechargeable Two-Way Radio comes across as a nice tough little two-way radio set, with built-in LED torches and a weather radio. It is an extremely useful accessory to have while out camping or on any outdoor excursions in an area where there is limited cell coverage. In short, it is truly rugged, packed with features and ready for an adventure.


Motorola Talkabout-T400 Packaging Includes

•    TWO MotorolaT400 radios (2)
•    TWO Rechargeable Ni-MH batteries
•    TWO Micro-USB wall charging cables
•    Wall adapter
•    Charging tray
•    Swivel belt carry holsters
•    ONE Accessory brochure
•    ONE User Guide/ Product manual

Motorola Talkabout-T400 (Images)

 
Image -  Motorola Talkabout-T400 Two Way Radio [Image]

 Product Description

Motorola Talkabout-T400 (General Info)
Note: This information was taken directly from the Motorola Solutions, Inc. site.
http://www.motorolasolutions.com/en_us/products/two-way-radios/consumer-two-way-radios/talkabout--t400.html#tabproductinfo

•    Band: GMRS/FRS
•    Range (miles) - Up to 35-mile range
•    Top Mid Base Ranges (miles) - 35/6/2
•    Indoor range: 4 floors (approximate)
•    Dimensions - 7.54 in. H x 2.26 in. W x 1.37 in. D  
•    Weight (without battery) - 0.418 lbs.
•    Weight (with battery) - 0.43 lbs.
•    IP Rating - IP54 weatherproof
•    Channel monitor - Yes
•    Channels - 22 channels, each with 121 privacy codes  [in optimum conditions]
•    QT (Quiet Talk) Interruption Filter - Yes
•    Priority scan - Yes
•    Monitor - Yes
•    Auto squelch - Yes
•    11 Weather Channels (7 NOAA) with alert feature - Yes


Motorola Talkabout-T400 (Interface)

•    VOX iVOX Hands-free Communication With or Without Accessories - Yes
•    Flashlight - Yes
•    Call Tones - 20 regular
•    Backlight - Yes
•    Keypad lock - Yes
•    Keypad tones - Yes
•    Timer – Yes

Motorola Talkabout-T400 (Power)

•    Battery Life - 21 hr. alkaline (3 AA) or 8.5hr. NiMH [premium Alkaline cells not supplied]
•    Battery type - NiMH battery pack , 3 AA
•    Power: 0.5 watt
•    Rechargeable - Yes
•    Mini-USB Charging Port - Yes
•    Eco Smart - Yes
•    LCD Battery Meter - Yes
•    Battery save power save – Yes


Ref. Sources:

•    http://www.motorolasolutions.com/en_us/products/two-way-radios/consumer-two-way-radios/talkabout--t400.html
•    http://www.techwholesale.com/motorola-talkabout-t400.html
•    http://www.motorolasolutions.com/content/dam/msi/docs/products/two-way-radios/consumer/t400/Talkabout-T400-data-sheet.pdf
•    http://www.buytwowayradios.com/products/Two-Way-Radio-Comparison.aspx

Customer Reviews and Price Details:

•    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Motorola-Talkabout-T400-Two-way-Radio-22-X-Gmrs-frs-Uhf-184800-Ft-t4b32201yaraav/46524762
•    http://www.amazon.com/Motorola-Talkabout-T400-Rechargeable-Two-Way/product-reviews/B00W75BLVS
•    http://www.amazon.com/Motorola-Talkabout-T400-Rechargeable-Two-Way/dp/B00W75BLVS/ref=sr_1_1?s=car&ie=UTF8&qid=1444981425&sr=1-1&keywords=Motorola+Talkabout-T400+Two+Way+Radio

NOAA Weather Channel

** To keep in touch with changing weather conditions, weather alerts will provide you with warnings of incoming storms or dangerous conditions. You can tune in to one of seven NOAA channels (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) on your T400, and you will always know what to pack with continuous local and regional weather broadcasting. However, NOAA radio service may not be available in all areas. Please check with your local weather office for frequency and details, or visit www.weather.gov/nwr, (Canada: www.msc.ec.gc.ca/msb/weatheradio ).


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