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Technical Information > VHF or UHF Two Way Radio?

VHF or UHF Two Way Radio?

We supply both UHF Two-Way Radio and VHF two-way radios, but if you’re confused about which to ask for, don’t panic. Our experts are here to guide you. Call +64 21 682912 or send an inquiry.

We all want as little disruption to the signal as possible when we receive or transmit messages from our two-way radio. One factor that may influence your choice then, depending on your environment, is whether your radio uses a VHF or UHF signal.

The best one for you will depend on your particular circumstances, as both UHF and VHF frequencies have their own unique benefits and drawbacks.

The differences between UHF and VHF Radios  


UHF (ultra-high frequency) signals operate at the higher end of the radio frequency spectrum.  They can more easily penetrate metal and concrete structures, which makes UHF radios a good choice in built-up areas like towns and cities, or for densely wooded or hilly areas. It also makes them popular for indoor use. In these environments, the radio signal is more easily transmitted through and around dense objects.

If compactness is a consideration for you, it’s worth mentioning that UHF radios generally have shorter (stubby) antennas, which makes them slightly less cumbersome to carry around. You can, however, boost the range of a UHF radio a little if you fit a longer whip antenna. The longer antennas are more commonly found on VHF radios – they can be uncomfortable for users (e.g. security guards) who wear their radio on a belt under their jacket.

UHF radios are commonly used for communication in warehouses, schools and retail stores, indoor security environments etc.


VHF (very high frequency) signals occupy the lower end of the radio frequency spectrum. The longer wavelength of VHF enables it to travel further and pernitrate trees better than UHF, so VHF radios could be right for you if you are primarily looking for two-way radios for outdoor or Offroad use. VHF radios are used exclusively in aviation and marine communication and are great for offroad racing, offshore racing, grounds maintenance workers, use in open fields, golf courses, and outdoor security environments.

VHF signals don’t penetrate metal and concrete structures very well though, so VHF radios may not be right for you in very built-up locations, or if you need a radio that will be used primarily indoors.

Can I convert a VHF radio to a UHF radio and vice versa?

Unfortunately, it’s not possible to convert VHF to UHF, etc, as each type of radio contains hardware that enables it to operate on a specific frequency range. If you’re buying or hiring more radios to work alongside ones you already use, they need to be of the same type.

If you’re hiring two-way radios and aren’t sure if UHF or VHF is best, contact your experts Harris Race Radios.