In the event of an emergency, inadequate preparation could expose you to needless danger. One of the fundamental resources in a potentially dangerous situation is access to information. With useful and timely information, you can better understand the situation and avoid danger. A shortwave radio can become vital in an extreme scenario.
Below are some of the best shortwave radios on the market.
Kaito KA500GRN Emergency AM/FM/SW Weather Alert Radio – The best radio for extreme weather emergencies
The Kaito KA500GRN radio’s small and lightweight design makes it an excellent choice for emergencies.
This shortwave radio can receive AM and FM frequency broadcasts. It also has seven pre-set NOAA weather channels, so you don’t need to fiddle with the dial to find relevant news.
It also comes with a built-in rechargeable Ni-MH battery and can be charged by an AC adapter, a solar panel installed on the top of the radio, by a PC using a USB port, or even the attached dynamo hand crank.
It comes with accessories such as earphones, a user manual, and an adapter that can charge a variety of gadgets.
- Solar powered battery charger
- USB port
- Is not able to filter out interference
NOAA Weather Radio for Emergency By Kozo – The best shortwave radio for outdoor survival
The KOZO emergency radio is a compact radio that measures 5.1 x 1.6 x 2.4 inches and weighs in at only 5.6 ounces.
The radio can be powered by the included rechargeable 500 mAh Lithium AAA batteries, a hand-cranked dynamo, and by solar panels
The radio is waterproof and features a sturdy plastic exterior designed for extended outdoor use. It’s able to receive even the weakest of signals in rugged terrains or extreme weather.
It features other accessories such as an alert radio, a USB port for charging devices, a flashlight, and a loud siren.
It also features an AUX input that allows one to connect the radio to headphones or an external speaker.
- High-quality sound
- Has a good signal reception
- No solar charge indicator
Retekess V117 Portable AM FM Radio – Best Compact Shortwave Radio for Traveling
The Retekess V177 is a portable radio that can fit in the palm of your hand and weighs only 4.6 pounds. Its no-frills design makes it easy to operate even for the least familiar technology users.
It is made of durable plastic and has a wrist strap for added protection.
The radio can receive shortwave frequencies in addition to AM and FM broadcasts. Equipped with a long telescoping antenna that allows for a strong reception even of the weakest signals that most radios would not receive, it attenuates the signal with innovative transistor technology to give out loud and crisp sound.
One set of AA batteries can power the radio up to several weeks which is crucial during emergencies or long power outage situations.
- Easy to use
- Has a large antenna yielding excellent reception
- No favorite channel setting
Tecsun PL880 Portable Digital PLL Dual Conversion AM/FM – best shortwave radio for a variety of frequencies
The Tescun PL880 is a portable digital radio the size of a small paperback novel and weighs a mere 1.15 ounces. It sounds excellent and has an ergonomic design.
The Tescun provides full range coverage of AM/FM and Longwave/Shortwave frequencies with single side band. Whether in a remote area of rugged terrain, the radio is equipped with a PLL synthesized digital dual conversion receiver that has unparalleled sensitivity & selectivity.
The radio has a 24-hour alarm clock and an informative display panel. Other accessories include a USB charging port, stereo earphones, and a carrying pouch.
It is powered by an 18650 lithium-ion rechargeable battery and comes with a built-in charger.
- Superb audio quality due to its full range speaker
- No line-in connection
Tecsun PL-360 Digital PLL Portable AM/FM Shortwave Radio – best radio for storing your favorite stations
The Tescun PL-360 is another compact but powerful radio. It features four tuning methods and PLL Synthesized AM/FM/SW Radio with Digital Signal Processing Technology, which is very useful in decoding frequencies into clear, crisp audio.
The tuning methods include tuning knob, pre-set station, ATS tuning, and the Tecsun Easy Tuning Mode.
It is powered by a built-in rechargeable battery but can also be connected to a DC wall charger.
This radio has a large memory that can hold up to 450 saved channels.
Other accessories include an alarm clock, a sleep timer, a USB charging port, and a built-in thermometer.
- Has multiple bandwidths
- Digital display screen
- Fragile plastic casing
ICOM 7300 02 Direct Sampling Shortwave Radio Black – best shortwave radio for RX and TX audio
The ICOM 7300 02 is a powerful radio that features a multimedia interface with a 4.3” colored touch screen liquid display.
The radio has an HF/50 MHz trans-receiver with RF direct digital sampling, and its transmitter has 101 channels. Also, it can receive SSB, CW, RTTY, AM and FM frequencies. It also has a spectrum scope and built-in autotuner that quickly finds strong stations.
- Finely tunes to pick up signals
- Excellent, highly-customizable RX and TX audio
- Color touchscreen interface
- Easy to use
- It has a single jack antenna
Sony ICF-SW7600GR AM/FM Shortwave World Band Receiver – Best radio for reducing interference
The Sony ICF-SW7600GR is a compact radio receiver. The radio comes with a sharp LCD panel and menu system with a variety of options.
The radio uses a microprocessor to operate and has a PLL digital tuner that can receive FM, MW/AM, shortwave and longwave frequencies. It has synchronous detection circuitry that helps reduce fading frequency interference caused by other stations.
The radio also has a large internal memory that allows storage of up to 100 scanned frequencies. The single sideband reception also allows for fast and discrete frequency searching and is accurate up to 1KHz.
It has other accessories such as a local and world clock, a 3.5mm jack, and an alarm timer.
The radio also comes with a ferrite-telescoping antenna that helps improve FM and SW frequency reception.
- Outstanding audio quality
- User-friendly display and menu system
- Heavier than other options
TIVDIO V-116 Portable Shortwave Radio – best radio for enhancing sound quality
The TIVIDIO V-116 is a small portable radio that measures 4.7 x 2.5 x 0.8 inches and weighs in at 12.3 ounces. The telescopic antenna extends to 21 inches.
It has a durable exterior cover made of UV resistant plastic to prevent corrosion and damage caused by the sun.
It employs a Digital Signal Processor that runs radio signals through a computer chip and maximizes sound quality.
It also features a small green LCD with a backlight which is precisely what you need for power outages or wilderness survival.
The radio is powered by a rechargeable 850mA lithium battery and can last several days under careful use.
Other accessories include a world clock, an alarm clock, calendar, and eBook support.
It also has an AUX output jack for headphones or external speaker and supports up to 32GB flash memory cards which can be used to play music or other audio.
- Audio quality is excellent
- Plays audio files from memory card
- eBook and Calendar support
- Poor SW reception
Kello Solar Crank NOAA Weather Radio Emergency AM/FM/SW – best radio for charging other devices
The Kello Solar is a multifunctional radio that can receive AM/FM/SW signals as well as NOAA weather alert stations. It is a larger radio that measures 7.8 x 3.8 x 2 inches and weighs 1.2 pounds.
The radio features an LCD screen, LED flashlight, USB charging port, world clock, and an AUX port.
It can be powered by a rechargeable 600mA lithium-ion battery, AAA batteries, solar panels, USB connection, or the attached hand-crank dynamo. This radio can serve as a power bank, allowing you to charge other devices, such as your phone, which is essential for emergency survival.
- Supports all four bands
- Solar-powered recharging
- Power bank feature
- Larger than most radios
LCJ Portable Digital Shortwave Radio Receiver – best radio for quick channel scanning
The LCJ radio is a small portable device that measures about 4.4 x 1 x 2.8 inches and weighs a light 5 ounces.
It has a multifunctional receiver that can receive and broadcast frequencies from FM, MW, SW, and NOAA Weather Broadcasts.
The radio has an automatic search option that also stores the radio stations scanned in an orderly manner for easy access on the go. It is powered by two AA batteries or by a DC power adapter.
- Small yet powerful
- Nice audio quality
- No battery level indicator
C Crane CC Skywave – The easiest radio to use
This C Crane radio is light and portable at only 10.6 ounces.
It can receive different signals and frequencies over AM, FM, Shortwave, Weather, and Airband.
It also features several accessories such as an LCD screen, travel clock, stereo headphone jack, sleep timer, and alarm that autotunes to a pre-set station.
Frequency selection and volume adjustments are done via rotary knobs on the sides of the radio. It also has up to 400 memory pre-sets to store your favorite stations.
The radio is powered by two AA batteries that can last up to 60 or 70 hours or via an AC adapter from an external power source.
- Large keypad
- Expansive memory
- Short battery life
- Weather band isn’t available everywhere
An emergency radio is crucial to responding to emergencies. They provide critical information to keep you and your loved ones out of harm’s way. We’re confident that one of these devices is the best shortwave radio to suit your needs.