What is RF Gain on a CB Radio?
RF is used as a synonym for “radio,” in this case a CB radio. It describes the wireless communication of signals through the air rather than through wires like a plug-in home phone. Sound interferes with signals and it comes from the environment, other nearby channels that overlap slightly, and environmental surroundings. To counteract noise, RF gain acts as an irritability filter. It reduces noise in the receiver without decreasing reception power as a CB radio squelch does.
What Does RF Gain Do On a CB Radio?
Without getting technical, CB RF gain can be thought of as another way to “squelch” noise without using the CB squelch, or in conjunction with the squelch. When you crank up the squelch, you’ll hear only the signals closest to you – the ones that are the strongest. That means you’ll hear less “noise” – usually the most distant signals will disappear.
So, if you need to hear a transmission from faraway, keep the gain almost wide open. If you want to focus on the transmissions closest to you, turn the CB radio RF gain clockwise until only the strongest (closest) signals remain.
Some truckers turn the squelch on a CB radio all the way off, turn the RF gain on a CB radio all the way on, then dial back the RF gain control until around all the noise disappears. That eliminates the choppy signals that a squelched radio produces, but it still allows the distant signals to come in. As vehicles drive closer to you, the signals will get stronger and louder due to their proximity. To maintain a conversation with someone whose signal is fading, you can turn the squelch down and also turn the gain up to give you a somewhat longer range to finish your conversation.
What’s The Difference Between RF Gain and Microphone Gain?
Microphone gain can be thought of
CB Radios That Have RF Gain
Base CB Radios With RF Gain
In addition to RF gain, this full 40-channel base Galaxy has mic gain, can be powered by AC or DC and features a number of convenient extras. The roger beep lets the listener know – with an audible beep – when you’ve finished transmitting and have “unkeyed” the microphone. Saying “over” is so yesterday with this technology. Talk back is another feature of the Galaxy. You can turn this feature on/off with a switch. It allows you to hear how you sound when you transmit.
Mobile CB Radios With RF Gain
Cobra 75 WXST
The Cobra 75 WXST is an all-in-the handset CB radio. It doesn’t have an RF gain per se, but it does have SoundTracker technology that automatically reconfigures the transmission signal. The signals are expedited through the multitude of signals out there in the air at any given time. Simultaneously, SoundTracker alters the way signals and noise/static relate, thus effectively reducing the static on incoming signals. So, SoundTracker works both on the reception and the transmission of signals.
Uniden BC 980
This Uniden SSB Bearcat 980, in addition to having RF gain, is the only current model from Uniden that has the single side band (SSB) capability. Without going into detail, SSB is simply another way of transmitting a signal wirelessly that is used in amateur radios and for other purposes. The drawback of SSB is that both the sender and the receiver need to have a SSB enabled radio to communicate, which is limiting.
Cobra 19 DXIV
A little mobile radio that includes gain is the reasonable price Cobra 19 DXIV, 40-channel compact CB radio. It’s a basic 40 channel radio with limited features, but to its credit, one of those is RF gain.
In addition, there is an S/RF meter, which measures the incoming signal strength as well as the power that the RF is putting out. There’s also a CB/PA switch, which allows you to use your radio as a public address system with the installation of an additional horn under the hood
Where Can I Locate Good Deals on CB Radios With RF Gain?
Search CB World for the radio that fits your needs – select the type that you want: mobile, handheld, base or kits. If you want a mobile CB, for instance, you can further refine your search by marking the brand and feature(s). This will set a filter to only show the radios that fit the criteria that you selected. Our products are listed with specifications, pictures, product videos when available and downloadable PDFs of owners manuals.
In addition, the blog section of the website has a wealth of information.