Today we’re going to review one of ICOM’s latest and best-selling VHF fixed mount radios: The ICOM M424.
The M424 and the ICOM M330G feature the new ICOM user interface which is better and more intuitive compared to older models. Complete with much-needed basic features, the M424 is equipped with VHF functionality, Class D DSC capabilities, and noise canceling technology. The radio is of medium size measuring 7 inches wide and 3.3 inches high.
One of the leading manufacturers of wireless communication products, ICOM was first founded by Tokuzo Inoue in 1954 in Osaka, Japan. Back then it was a manufacturing and engineering company creating radio equipment for various industries. 50 years later, ICOM keeps its spot on the top while proving to be one of the industry’s most trusted brands producing innovative marine electronics such as radios, navigation products and communication receivers.
What makes ICOM one of the best marine electronic brands in the world? ICOM’s products are not your ordinary marine electronics. With the help of their world-class designers and engineers, ICOM products are always intensely quality tested before distribution. In fact, ICOM products are often approved for the US Military 810 specifications which are very high. It’s no surprise that ICOM remains the best 2-way radio brand that is recognized globally. Currently distributing to more than 80 countries, ICOM was also the first Japanese company to supply radios to the United States Department of Defense and U.S. Marine Corps. While not on our list of the best VHF marine radios is certainly has its place as the perfect choice for some boaters.
ICOM M424 Main Features:
- New Icom Family User Interface - The M424 features a new easy-to-use menu system. In this new interface, the bottom line of the display shows software key functions for simpler operation. With this new design, the device has fewer buttons and is more efficient to use.
- Built-in Class D DSC - ICOM allows you to monitor channel 70 while receiving messages from another channel. It also includes great DSC so that you can make distress calls, safety, urgency, position request, and polling requests, etc.
- Active noise-cancelling- With ICOM, you can now have smooth clear conversations without annoying background noise. This is a very useful feature especially when you’re out on the water having an emergency during a storm.
- AIS Target Call with MA-500TR - With the optional MA-500TR Class B AIS transponder, you can make individual DSC calls without manually inputting the MMSI number.
- High-Quality 10W Audio - The M424 includes its own 10W amplifier which can boost audio output from its external speaker. It also has its ‘public address function’ which allows you to make announcements through your mic. Now, you can use your marine radio like a megaphone or loudspeaker if needed.
- Common NMEA Interface - with an external GPS receiver you can see your current position and time on the display. It also allows other vessels to send position information to you through a navigational device via NMEA 0183 connectivity.
- IPX7 Submersible Protection - This waterproof rating allows the device to stay submerged for 30 minutes in 1 meter of water without damage.
- AquaQuake Function - This vibrating function clears water from speaker for better audio transmission. A useful feature for rainy days.
- Weather Channels and Alert Function - Keeps you informed, alert and safe during emergency weather and hazard situations as well as helping you avoid fast moving storms.
ICOM M424 Accessories:
The M424 includes a hand microphone (HM -196B/SW) for second station/ intercom, (6.1m or 20ft) of power cable, plastic tilt bracket, SP24 and SP35 loudspeaker, metal mic holder/hanger and instructional manual upon purchase. The M424 is a fixed mount VHF radio, and it can be flush mounted. People who would like to flush mount this radio can improvise by simply building their own mount or purchase the ICOM MB-132 mounting kit.
ICOM M424 vs M424G:
ICOM M424 and M424G are both parts of the new series of Icom America’s VHF marine radios. Both these models feature built-in Class D DSC and Icom’s new interface. However, the G version is slightly more efficient having its own integrated GPS which does increase the price. It also has a more modern look with its back-lit keys.
Does the M424 Come with all needed hardware for mounting?
Yes, all necessary hardware for simple mounting is included with purchase.
If I flush mount the radio with the GPS still work (M424G).?
Yes, however remember that you will need to buy a flush mount kit with brackets as that does not come with the M424G.
Does the M424 have an external speaker in the hailer/mike?
No, only the radio unit itself has an external speaker, if you are looking for an external hailer that will need to be bought separate.
From the brand that always puts safety first, the ICOM M424 is undoubtedly one of the most efficient VHF radios out there. So if you’re looking for an affordable, easy-to-use VHF radio, the ICOM M424 is our top choice for you. However, if you’re looking for a VHF radio with GPS and a more modern build and design, you can opt for ICOM’s G version: the ICOM M424G.