A marine VHF radio is your key back to the world when you are caught out at sea. Modern technologies have allowed these devices to be smaller and compact ensuring you can have your VHF radio with you at all times which is especially useful when you are on a small boat.
Standard Horizon a leading brand in the world of marine communication presents one of their most popular VHF radios; the HX210 Handheld Floating VHF Radio.
The company also deals with HF equipment that is of utmost importance in marine communication. You can count on their devices to not only communicate with friends when out kayaking or boating but also for help in emergency situations.
Design and Features of Standard Horizon HX210 VHF Radio
Compact and Lightweight
Perhaps the most desirable feature of this radio is its small size. If you are a kayaker, surfer, jet skier, or dingy sailor, space is crucial. But with a compact handheld device, it is easier to find that little extra space to store your radio.
What’s more, this radio is buoyant which is desirable since you don’t have to worry about it sinking to the bottom of the water if its dropped overboard. It has an IPX7 water resistance rating which indicates its inner components will not get damaged when it’s around or submersed for a brief period in water.
The radio floats face up when you drop it in water, and a red strobe light is activated to help you locate it whether the device is ON or turned OFF.
You can configure the light to flash on and off or in SOS mode where it flashes three short flashes followed by three long flashes and three short flashes, or you can set a continuous flash to help you find the radio.
This VHF radio comes with a durable belt clip to allow keeping it beside you at all times. The curved sides give it an ergonomic shape such that it will not slide out of your hand during use.
Wide Frequency Range and Output Power
The HX210 has all USA and Canadian marine channels. You can dial in the emergency number channel 16 which is the distress channel. You will also find channels for the US coast guard as well as state control, and other vital channels that make your overall boating much safer.
The HX210 has FM broadcasts from 76MHz to 108MHz. If you want to stay updated, just tune in to your favorite FM channel.
The radio has a speaker mic jack that you can connect your headset to and listen to the volume levels of your choice.
When it comes to the output power, HX210 has a 6W output. It is an impressive range since you can communicate between 7-8 miles in reasonable conditions with no land obstructions. Not only that, the radio can survive knocks and abuse, no matter what you throw at it.
It also has a noise-canceling microphone that drains the ocean noise away and allows you to communicate better.
Display and Menu System
This VHF radio is straightforward to use. It has an E2O (Easy to Operate) menu that simplifies the whole process. You will be able to use it when under pressure so that you can dial in the right channel and communicate in time to pass out an important message.
You will appreciate that it has one of the largest displays compared to other radios its size. It has a dot matrix resolution on an LCD screen. It is bright and clear even when using it under direct sunlight. The backlight comes in handy when using it at night as well.
With this radio, you can customize the functions of the different keys to suit your current and most common conditions. Say you want a channel that contacts local sailors or send a unique message of your location and identity, this radio will help you do exactly that.
The Standard Horizon HX210 comes with an 1850mAh Lithium-Ion battery. It is your ticket to staying out longer thanks to its 14-15 hours of battery life. Although it is a large capacity battery, this unit is still lightweight.
It is supplied with 110VAC and 12VDC charging cables and charging cradles. These are 3-hour quick chargers, so that you can recharge your radio on a whim before setting out on a trip.
The Standard Horizon HX210 enjoys a 3-year warranty. A replacement or repair is guaranteed if the device fails for any reason within the warranty period. Not only that, the radio can be serviced after the three years in Standard Horizon’s Flat Rate Service Program.
When you have the backing of the manufacturer, nothing should keep you from enjoying the usefulness of the HX210 handheld VHF radio.
HX210 vs. HX300
While these two devices have lots of similarities like the ergonomic shape and being lightweight, The HX300 is a much more advanced model. It features an IPX8 waterproof rating meaning it can survive being dropped in a depth of 4.92ft for 30 minutes. This is unlike the HX210 that has a 3.3ft water depth survival.
The HX300 has a 5W of transmitting power. It includes US and Canadian channels, and you can scan through preset channels. You can set up to 10 channels to use with the preset scan function.
The radio has weather channels that give you weather alerts. This way, you will always be in the know and not be caught in a storm that could have been avoided.
The HX300 also has an internal 600mw speaker, so you don’t need to have an external speaker. Its 1800mAh battery is much smaller but can last longer when it is in standby mode. It has a USB charging cable which is one of its kind in radios of this class. Check out our list of the best marine VHF radios see all our top picks.
Purchasing a handheld VHF can be a process. But Standard Horizon makes it seem effortless with theHX210 model. It features a compact and buoyant design that is a must have when you need a portable VHF radio for your boating trips. Its affordability and high-capacity 1850mAh Lithium-Ion battery make it a top pick for your safety and convenience on the water.