22 Channels?

More (or Less) Than 22 Channels

 By Kenton Andersen

When evaluating GMRS radios, you may see claims of “30 channels”, “50 channels”, even “200 channels” or more. There are only 22 channels (defined frequencies) for FRS-GMRS. WCMC will never use any channel above 22. 

So what are the extra channels? Depends on the manufacturer. Some are receive-only NOAA weather channels, which can be useful. Some are just memory slots that hobbyists can program with their favorite frequencies and privacy codes.

What about “15 channel” radios? High-power radios may omit FRS-GMRS channels 8-14 or operate receive-only on those channels. The FCC restricts transmission to only ½ watt on those channels, and some high-power radios are unable to reduce their power (e.g. Midland MXT275). WCMC will never use channels 8-14.


Disclaimer: The views expressed here belong to the author and not the Windy City Miata Club, Inc. or its officers. The Windy City Miata Club, Inc., assumes no liability for possible damages.