Marine vs. Weather Radio

Ok, Ok, I apologize if this topic has been hashed out before, but technology changes, prices drop, and I am Christmas shopping so here goes…

Although it has the functionality, how many of you regularly use your VHF radio for other things besides checking weather? In other words, would I really gain much going for VHF when a weather radio would suffice?

Thanks in advance for any thoughts on this.

I think any Marine worth His or her Salt could kick the radios butt!!

Thanks for the memory…

– Last Updated: Dec-03-04 10:49 AM EST –

There were times that I thought that extra
20 lbs of AN/PRC-25 would kick my butt.

As to the orginial post, go with the marine VHF-FM if you live along the coast or inland waterways. You may not use the TX ability all the time but it's there if you need it.

Only in an emergency
and since we’ve had no emergencies (requiring help) so far, my husband and myself have never used the VHF radio for anything other than listening to the weather.

However, the first time we find ourselves needing it for an emergency we’ll probably be awfully annoyed if it isn’t there.


It depends on the circumstances
Although I’ve never needed to make an emergency call, I use my marine VHF less for weather checking than other purposes. I often paddle with groups or with classes where on-water communication at a distance is necessary. I’ve also used it to make “Securite” warnings when crossing channels in poor visibility conditions.

It all depends on how and where you paddle. Even if you only need it for weather, one thing to keep in mind is that a Marine VHF typically provides MUCH better weather channel reception than a weather radio. Before I owned a VHF, I had a weather radio. Once I discovered the difference in reception, I sold the weather radio.

No, you don’t need a VHS
Nor do you need a spare tire, jack and lug wrench. No spare paddle either. Or a bilge pump. Or a paddle float. You may never even use the auto insurance your state requires you to carry.

VHS’s are no gaurantee of safety, but in heavily traveled waters they help to reduce your risk.


Depending on where you paddle, VHF would be the way to go. As a few people mentioned, the reception alone on weather bands is much better.

And if you ever get into an emergency situation, you will have gladly paid 2x waht you paid for it originally.

I have used it when travelling open water on the great lakes to monitor and/or communicate with commercial vessels as we can often not be seen!!

Doesn’t the television set
on the deck screw up the CG?

What kind of movies do you like to watch while paddling?

VHF Radio
It is a must have safety item. You can talk to the Coast Guard directly and people monitor channel 16 in case you had some trouble. Try that on a weather radio. FishHawk

I just remove
my rear hatch cover and it fits low in the hull for stability.