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10 Best Ham Radio Speaker of 2021 Buying Guide (Top Rated Pick)

In this article, we will be giving you our recommendation of the best speaker for Ham radios, as well as another nine recommendations to find the speaker that’s perfect for you.

In addition, we will also be talking about all the essential factors you need to consider when you are looking into getting a HAM radio speaker.

Our top 10 list will contain the pros and cons of each speaker, as well as the highlighted features and a review of each.

If you have any questions, be sure to check out our FAQs section at the bottom of this article, where we discuss common questions asked about HAM radio speakers.

The Comparison Table of 10 Best Ham Radio Speaker 2021

PreviewBrand NameDetail
Cobra HG S500
Midland 21-406
Uniden (BC15)
RoadPro RPSP-15
ZAXIDALER
VECTORCOM TRD55
Icom SP35
Yaesu MLS-100
Astatic 302-VS6
Sound Around CB1000

What is The Best HAM Radio Speaker?

Overall, our top pick for the best speaker has to go to the Cobra HG S500. It’s just the best HAM speaker radio available.

Why is the Cobra HG S500 The Best Brand For a HAM Radio Speaker?

The Cobra HG S500 is, overall, the best speaker for a HAM radio. It matches quality with functionality.

If you aren’t satisfied with this brief explanation, then don’t worry. We will go way more in-depth in the review section of this article, where we will delve into the specifics about why our choice is the best speaker for a HAM radio.

Factors You Need To Think About When Looking To Buy Best External Speaker For Ham Radio

Moving on, we will inform you about everything you need to consider if you are interested in buying a HAM radio speaker.

It’s crucial that you check a speaker that has all the factors we list so you don’t end up with a speaker that you are unsatisfied with, or further still, unable to use.

There are more factors than the ones we will mention that you should consider, but these are the main points that apply to all HAM radio speakers, no matter what.

Audio Quality

The first buying consideration we are going to mention may just be the most critical factor when it comes to buying a speaker for a HAM radio; the sound quality.

Lower-end speakers will usually have worse audio quality than higher-end ones. Also, higher-end speakers may have more options and functions that will allow you to improve the audio quality even further.

So, if you care about the audio quality or use your HAM radio every day, then the audio quality may be the most crucial factor you need to consider.

In contrast, if you don’t care about audio quality or don’t expect to use your HAM radio much, this might not be such a crucial factor.

Size

Another critical factor that you need to consider is size.

If you have a limited amount of space, then buying a speaker that will fit comfortably in that space is vital. If not, you may not even be able to use the speaker, or it may hinder visibility if it’s in a car.

Also, the size of a speaker impacts a speaker in a few other ways. Usually, larger speakers will be more powerful, and they will usually have better audio/audio features. This isn’t always the case, but it’s an important point to note.

This means that the size of a speaker you get is entirely dependent on your personal situation. If you have the room and want additional features, it may be better to opt for a larger model.

Power

If you want an incredibly loud speaker, either because you are hard of hearing or you want the rest of the street to hear your speaker, then power is an essential factor you need to consider.

Although, power might not be such a significant factor for you if you don’t care about your speaker being extremely loud. Most of the time, any speaker you get will have enough power for you to hear it loud and clearly.

Compatibility

Compatibility is a factor that may make your speaker or radio useless if you don’t take it into consideration.

Some speakers will only work with certain brands of types of HAM radios, so if you purchase a HAM radio speaker that isn’t compatible with your HAM radio, you will have wasted a lot of time and money.

Although, some speakers will be a jack of all trades type speaker, able to work with almost any speaker.

Either way, it’s vital to check your HAM radio and buy a speaker that it is compatible with.

Ruggedness

If you are buying a HAM radio speaker for a rig in your car, then ruggedness is a crucial component.

This is amplified ten-fold if you plan on driving off-road or in sub-par conditions. This is since the surfaces you may drive on could be extraordinarily bumpy or uneven, causing everything in your car to take some damage.

The Top 10 Best Ham Radio Speaker Review & Buyer’s Guide

01. Cobra HG S500 – Best Ham Radio External Speaker

 

Highlighted Features

  • Noise-cancelling
  • Variable talkback control
  • Shock-resistant construction
  • 15 watts

The cobra HG S500 is by far the best HAM radio speaker on the market right now.

This speaker is the highest quality speaker on this list, being made out of solid materials and having a shock-resistant construction. Because of this, it is incredibly robust and sturdy.

It’s also pretty powerful. It’s not the most potent HAM radio speaker on our list, but it is defiantly up there, and it’s got way more power than most people will need.

One of the most prominent and out there features of the Cobra HG S500 is its variable talkback control, which is something that very few HAM radio speakers have to offer.

It also has superb noise canceling. This speaker is often praised for having one of the best noise-canceling abilities out there.

There really aren’t any negatives to the Cobra HG S500. In fact, we had to scramble to even have a negative to list for it. Although, we did manage to find one.

The only flaw we could find is that there is mounting hardware included, something which is an annoyance. Although, this isn’t much of a negative, and it is easily remedied.

Pros

  • Talkback function
  • Extremely robust
  • Powerful

Cons

  • Mounting hardware not included

02. Midland 21-406

 

Highlighted Features

  • Takes batteries
  • 20 watts
  • Swivel base
  • 70-inch cord

When it comes to power, the Midland 21-406 has got you covered. Boasting an impressive 20 watts of power for such a small speaker is truly impressive.

Also, this speaker has a 70-inch cord. This is amazing as it means you can have your speaker far away from your HAM radio which gives you more options and control.

It also has a swivel base, making it more resistant to being damaged when driving on bumpy roads or rough terrain.

Although, there is something that you need to know about the Midland 21-406, and that is that it requires brand-specific batteries.

So, not only does it require batteries (which just by itself may be a negative to some), it needs brand-specific batteries.

This means that you will not be able to go shopping and just buy the standard, readily available batteries.

Instead, you’ll have to order batteries from a particular brand specifically. This may be a massive annoyance for some people.

The fact that it requires batteries may be either a good thing or a bad thing.

For people who are going to be using their HAM radio and HAM radio speaker in places where a power supply isn’t guaranteed, then a speaker that takes batteries will be a welcomed addition.

Although, for the majority of people, a speaker that requires batteries is just an unnecessary added factor to micromanage, and it may become an annoyance.

Pros

  • Takes batteries
  • Powerful
  • Swivel base
  • Very long cord

Cons

  • Takes batteries

03. Uniden (BC15)

 

Highlighted Features

  • Extremely rugged
  • Compatible with most radios
  • Built-in noise blanker
  • Incredibly compact

The Uniden (BC15) has one of the most impressive features lists out of our list.

The Uniden (BC15) is extremely compact and small, making it perfect for traveling due to its portability. Furthermore, it is compatible with almost all radios.

These two features combined make it one of the best HAM radio speakers for people who travel a lot or frequently change speakers.

In addition to the points above, this speaker is also highly durable and rugged due to its armored design.

Surprisingly, it does all of this without sacrificing the audio quality. The built-in noise canceller does a great job of blocking unwanted audio from being played through the speaker, and the quality of the sound is exceptional.

The only negative about the Uniden (BC15) is that it is more on the quiet side of things. It’s not very powerful, which means it’s not the loudest speaker out there.

Although, if you aren’t looking for a super-powerful HAM radio speaker, then is one of the best options you have.

Pros

  • Very robust
  • Compatible with a lot of radios
  • Extremely small
  • Easily portable
  • Built-in noise blanker

Cons

  • Quiet

04. RoadPro RPSP-15

 

Highlighted Features

  • Strong metal mesh grill
  • Swivel bracket
  • Compact and light
  • Crisp and clear sound

The RoadPro RPSP-15 is a solid and robust HAM radio speaker with some features that are not usually seen on sturdier models.

It has delicious crisp and clear audio quality, unexpected from such a small and robust model.

In addition, it also is perfect for traveling due to its small size and portability.

This speaker is attached to a swivel mounting bracket, which makes it great for people driving in sub-par conditions because the swivel bracket can act as an absorption device, stopping the speaker from taking damage from bumps or jumps.

Although, it is not very powerful, and it is reported to be relatively quiet. Furthermore, there seem to be a few complaints from people stating that there is no Bluetooth, which many people expect from modern speakers.

Pros

  • Swivel bracket
  • Smooth audio
  • Portable
  • Compact

Cons

  • Very quiet
  • Not Bluetooth

05. ZAXIDALER

 

Highlighted Features

  • Compact
  • Mounting bracket and hardware included
  • Compatible with any radio with a 3.5mm jack
  • Three-foot cable

The ZAXIDALER is excellent for a multitude of reasons.

First of all, it’s incredibly compact and portable. This is great for people who want to always take a HAM radio speaker with them wherever they go if they decide to use their HAM radio.

In addition, it’s also compatible with a wide range of radios, which is another reason why it’s great for traveling or carrying with you at all times.

It also has some good quality of life extras, such as the long 3-foot connection cable and the fact that it comes with all the necessary hardware it needs to be mounted.

Of course, a speaker that is this versatile has to have some drawbacks, and the ZAXIDALER is no exception.

This speaker is not very powerful, which leads it to be relatively quiet.

Don’t get us wrong, it’s still loud enough for the majority of uses and occasions, although it’s quieter than most of the other speakers on this list.

Also, it is lacking when it comes to noise-canceling, which it does an inferior job of.

Although, for such a compact and portable speaker, there are bound to be some sacrifices.

Pros

  • Compatible with most radios
  • Fairly long cord
  • Compact
  • Mounting hardware included

Cons

  • Quiet
  • No noise canceling

06. VECTORCOM TRD550

 

Highlighted Features

  • Compact
  • Portable
  • Compatible with most radios

The VECTORCOM TRD550 is a speaker that is exceptionally functional and applicable in a wide variety of situations.

This is because of its small size and weight, making it incredibly compact and easy to transport.

Furthermore, it is compatible with most radios, adding even more to its functionality and practicality.

The only issue with this speaker is that it’s not the most potent HAM radio speaker on our list.

It is reported to be too quiet for most people’s needs, which is why it has found itself so far down on our list.

However, if you don’t plan on using your HAM radio speaker a whole lot and you want something that you can just throw in a bag and forget about until you need it, then the VECTORCOM TRD550 will be an excellent fit for that purpose.

Pros

Cons

  • Low power
  • Quiet

07. Icom speaker

 

Highlighted Features

  • Extremely small
  • Compact
  • Hand’s free function
  • Fits most radios

The Icom speaker has a plethora of fantastic features.

The main selling point of this speaker is its hands-free function that allows you to control some of the variables by using your voice only.

This Is genuinely innovative and gives it an advantage over many of the other HAM radio speakers on our list.

In addition, it’s also one of the smallest and compact HAM radio speakers on our list.

This speaker is mind-bogglingly small. It’s effortless to transport and one of the most portable HAM radio speakers out there.

Another great point about the Icom speaker is that it’s compatible with almost all radios, so it’s an excellent choice for people who are looking to buy speakers for multiple radios.

There is a drawback. It’s relatively quiet. Although, for a speaker of this size, this is no surprise. No one who buys a speaker that is this size is going to expect it to be super powerful and loud.

So, if you aren’t too concerned with the power of a HAM radio speaker, then the Icom speaker may be one of your best options. Its highly functional, as well as having the extraordinarily cool feature of being hands-free.

Pros

  • Tiny
  • Hand’s free function
  • Highly compatible

Cons

  • Low power
  • Quiet

08. Yaesu MLS-100

 

Highlighted Features

  • Powerful
  • Mounting bracket included
  • Only compatible with Yaesu radios
  • Two contacts

The Yaesu MLS-100 is one of the more powerful speakers on this list.

Not only that, but it also has two contact points so it can be connected to two things at once, which may be helpful for some people who switch between different radios.

It also comes with a mounting bracket, which is an added bonus.

However, this speaker has a significant flaw that prevents it from finding itself higher on this list.

It is only compatible with a few radios that Yaesu makes. Because of this, this limits the number of people that can actually use this speaker.

Although, for the people who do have a radio by Yaesu, then this speaker is an excellent choice, and you are one of the few lucky people who actually have the opportunity to use it.

Pros

  • Very powerful
  • Mounting hardware included
  • Two contacts

Cons

  • Only compatible with Yaesu radios

09. Astatic 302-VS6

 

Highlighted Features

  • Noise-cancelling
  • 10-inch power cord
  • Includes all mounting hardware

The Astatic 302-VS6 has a noise-canceling feature that blocks out any interference from being transmitted through the speaker.

A great bonus for this speaker is that it comes with all the necessary hardware for it to be installed, which is a great addition.

Although, there are some pretty significant drawbacks that you should be aware of.

The connection cord on the Astatic 302-VS6 is very short, which can make things difficult as you will have to have it right next to your radio – something that may not be possible for a lot of people.

In addition, there are also many claims of its noise-canceling system being ineffective. Feedback from the squelch seems to find its way past the noise blocker and is heard through the speaker.

Pros

  • Mounting hardware included
  • Loud

Cons

  • Ineffective noise canceling
  • Short chord

10. Pyramid CB1000

 

Highlighted Features

  • 25 watts
  • Compatible with a wide range of radios
  • 6-foot cord
  • compact

The Pyramid CB1000 has many unique features, and it’s disappointing for us to have to place it so far on our list.

It boasts an impressive 25 watts of power, more than most other speakers on this list. It’s compatible with a multitude of different radios.

It’s got a long cord. You may be asking, “why is the Pyramid CB1000 so far down on this list if it’s got some many amazing features?” Well, we will tell you.

This speaker reportedly is made out of harmful materials that have been shown to cause a wide array of health problems.

This is only true for one of the chemicals used, and there has been no official evidence showing this to be the case.

However, because it has a potentially dangerous issue, we have placed it low on our list.

If the rumors turn out to be accurate, then we may have to move this one up a few spots on our list, but airing on the side of caution, it may be better to stay away from this one if you believe the rumors.

Pros

  • Extremely powerful
  • Easily portable
  • Compact
  • Compatible with most radios
  • Long cord

Cons

  • Made with potentially hazardous chemicals

The Basic FAQs of Best Ham Radio Speaker

How do I set up a speaker for a HAM radio?

There is no setup. After you have set up your HAM radio, connect it to your speaker. Although, on some speakers, there may be extra options such as volume control or gain control.

How do I install a speaker for a HAM radio?

Again, there is no setup process needed. Speakers just require to be connected to a HAM radio to work. It’s just a vessel to produce the audio coming from the HAM radio.

Can I use any speaker for a HAM radio?

The speakers you can use depend on the HAM radio you own. Some HAM radios will only accept certain types or brands of speakers and will not be compatible with others.

However, if your HAM radio has a regular audio jack, it is possible that it can be connected to any speaker. Although, it’s better to opt for a speaker that has been designed explicitly for HAM radios.

Do Ham radio speakers need batteries?

Usually, no. A HAM radio speaker will take power from the radio, so speakers will typically need no external power.

Are there similarities between a high and low range HAM radio speaker?

There are a plethora of differences between high-end and low-end HAM radio speakers.

For one, the sound quality. This may be the most significant difference between low-end and high-end speakers.

The higher range speakers will usually have an audio quality that is leaps and bounds ahead of their lower-end counterparts.

Furthermore, another factor where the varies is power. Powerful speakers will usually be on the higher end of the spectrum.

So, if you want to get a powerful HAM radio speaker, you may have to get a higher range model.

Another thing that higher-end speakers will have, which low-range models won’t, is a multitude of quality-of-life changes or cool features.

Higher-end models can afford to go all out on all the latest technology, whereas low-end models will not have this luxury.

Last but not least, the quality. As with most things, lower-end models will tend not to last as long as higher-end models.

In addition, they may break easily and even stop functioning altogether for no apparent reason.

Conclusion

If you have read all of our articles, then you’ll know all the factors that you need to look out for when looking to buy HAM radio speakers and why.

In order to pick the speaker that is best for you, go through our list and see which one resonates the most with you.

In addition, make sure to ensure that the speaker you opt for has all the features that you will want, which we mentioned in the buying considerations.

Although, if you decide to go with any of the HAM radio speakers we recommended, you really can’t go wrong. Each one has positives and negatives, but they are the best HAM radio speakers out there.

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