Midland E+Radios

emergency radio

The Midland Radio Corporation has a new set of radios designed for personal use in an emergency situation. The E-READY Emergency Two-Way Radios are sold in a kit that provides a few of the essentials that may be needed in some kinds of emergencies. When phone lines are down, and cell towers are dead, a two-way radio can help you locate loved ones and communicate with them.

The radios have 22 channels with 38 privacy codes and have a 26 mile range under ideal, line of sight conditions. Do not expect to get a 26 mile range in a suburban setting.

Built into the radios is a weather alert capability that will notify you of any dangerous conditions. The radios are powered by rechargeable 300 mAh battery packs, but can also operate on AA batteries in a long term power outage. The packs charge via micro USB ports.

The kit also includes an inexpensive whistle, compass and flashlight. The suggested retail price for the set is $49.99. In addition to radios, Midland also makes other electronics like this WiFi camera.

My family has a wide range of emergency products including two-way radios. If you’ve never given any consideration to preparing for an emergency, I’d suggest thinking about it now. Man made disasters can happen anywhere, and natural disasters can hit all parts of the globe in one form or another. While guns are a part of disaster planning, so is having food, power and first aid gear.

The CDC has a good starter list of emergency supplies you should consider having on hand. I strongly suggest critically evaluating your situation and see what specialized products you might need. For example, if you have a long term medical condition, stocking up on your medications is a good idea. If you spend a lot of time on the water or in remote locations, a personal locator beacon is a must. For areas prone to tornadoes, some kind of shelter ought to be a priority. Of course, lights like the Streamlight Siege lantern can be helpful in a wide range of situations.

The idea is to anticipate the likely problems and build your response to them. If you are prepared for the most likely events, you are probably 75-95% of the way to being prepared for the unlikely ones as well.

Richard Johnson

An advocate of gun proliferation zones, Richard is a long time shooter, former cop and internet entrepreneur. Among the many places he calls home is http://www.gunsholstersandgear.com/.


  • KestrelBike

    Alright, strangest thing but I think I found a simple work-around to the host redirects issue.

    A week or three ago, I noticed that whenever a particular link was 127’ing on TFB.com, if I clicked the same link that was linked on thegunfeed.com, it would go right to the article with no host-redirect. So I’ve been just waiting for TFB links to show up there (it’s usually very quick after TFB posts it, if not immediately via script).

    Curious still, I just decided to see if I could copy the direct article URL from TFB and paste it a blank tab and add some of the extra URL in the address that thegunfeed links with. This works. I decided to see if just adding “?” after TFB’s link will bring me to the article and not host me, and yes, this works.

    So, if a link like http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2016/04/08/midland-eradios/ gives you a redirect error, copy it again, but put a “?” after the last fwd-slash, like this:
    http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2016/04/08/midland-eradios/? and it should go right to the article.

    • MichaelinPA

      Holy cow! That works!

  • Here are few things to know about radio, range, and antennas.

    1. Advertised range is a bunch of junk. Sure, maybe on a featureless wide open dried lake bed, you will get 26 miles from handheld to handheld. Much of the U.S. is not like that.

    2. Effective Radiated Power (ERP) is what really matters. Transmitter wattage is nice to know, but, what really matters is ERP. A 5 watt radio with a poor antenna could have an ERP of just 100mw. Likewise with the right antenna, a 5 watt radio can have an ERP of 60 watts or more. Also, while we’re talking about ERP, we should talk about antenna gain. Antennas on these small radios are both zero gain and fixed. Just as an antenna will make a transmitter perform better, a high gain directional antenna will make a receiver perform better.

    Now, I live in the Northeast U.S, and I’ve been an active ham radio operator (Extra Class) for 21 years. In those 21 years I’ve learned a few things about radios. Small .5 watt handheld radios are really only usable over about .5 – .8 miles. They work well in an area about the size of Epcot World or a campground and not much else. Using a handheld radio inside a car will greatly reduce the range of the radios to just a few hundred yard. You want the antenna outside of the vehicle and as high as possible. Right in the center of your vehicle roof is the best place. Even a 5 watt mobile radio is only good for 3-4 mile radius.

    Now, there are things you can do that will assist with transmit and receive. Elevation is always your friend with RF. If you’re on the open plains your effective range will be line of sight, and these radios will perform better in places like that. If you buy a radio with detachable antenna, you want the highest gain antenna you can use. When your mobile, a 3db gain antenna is about the best you’ll get for vhf/uhf radios. At home, it’s pretty easy to get an inexpensive 11db vertical (5watts at 11dbi = 39watts ERP)

    Don’t forget to mention that this radio operates in the GMRS allocation, so that means you need an FCC license to use these radios.

    • ozzallos .

      That’s always annoyed the hell out of me as well… Advertised range is like MSRP, oft times so wildly off as to not even bear a resemblance to reality. The ERP info is good stuff.

    • Adam D.

      Hey Johnny, thanks for the info!
      Is there a forum for these things?
      I’m interested in radios, but don’t know squat about them.

      • A forum for prepping radios? Not really. The real issue is that inexpensive radios like these are really more toy than tool. There may be some prepping forums where they have a communication section. If I was buying radios for prepping or disaster here’s what I would buy.

        1. A multi-band mobile radio (50-100 watt), with battery backup, for home and an 11db gain antenna for the roof
        2. A mobile radio for each car and 1/4 wave magnetic mount antenna
        3. A handheld for each person – with 12 volt chargers.

        So, that really means, getting everyone in your family a ham radio license. The tests are easy and the license fee is cheap. This gives you the best options for buying and using radios.

  • Captain Obvious

    These are toy GMRS/FRS radios. That means on FRS they use .5W, (yeah just half a watt). On GMRS they can use up to 5 watts but most of these bubble pack toy radio use about 2 watts and fixed antennas. Since they use cheap components they aren’t very efficient. That means the majority of the radiated power is lost as heat. That means their half watt is more like a 1/4 watt and their 2 watt output is less than 1 watt. I’ve never seen one of the go over a mile and that is in ideal, mountain top to mountain top conditions. Did I mention that technically you have to have an $80 FCC license to use them legally on the GMRS freqs? If you want real communications, buy some used commerical quality business or ham radios and get a license. Skip this junk.

    • Blake

      What would you recommend then?