Is Galaxy the Best CB?
That question is asked almost every day and I always give the same answer. The Galaxy radios are not CB radios. They are 10-meter radios that convert to 11 meter, which is Citizens Band Frequencies. Right after World War II, there were many veterans who had the "radio bug." The FCC started the Citizens Band (CB) Frequencies so private citizens could have a band of their own for limited range communications, limited being the key word. At the time, five watts was all that was allowed. That has been lowered in recent years to 3.8 watts.
Then why is Galaxy the name every driver asks for? Because it was one of the first 10-meter radios imported to be used as a CB Radio. It got the name by being a 25-watt radio that could operate illegally on 11-meter as well. It had echo and all kinds of channels. Plenty of places to go when the standard 40 channels set aside for CB got crowded. This is sometimes called free banding, operating in channels between 10 and 11 meters and between 11 and 12 meters. These are really not free bands. In other countries they use these channels like we use telephones. Even if it seems that these are unoccupied, someone else, somewhere else may be using them. Even though the law may seem silly, there is good reason for the laws governing CB communications.
Is the quality of a Galaxy radio better than other radios? No, they are not better than other radios. In fact, the quality of these radios is nowhere as good as the Cobra, Uniden and Midland radios that are available today.
Why do I hear other drivers say throw away the Cobra and get a Galaxy? It is all a matter of perception. If you believe that Galaxy is better, than your opinion is that Galaxy is better. Don't believe the hype; most radios are very well made. Some are superior and some are just down right poor. By large, most radios are very well made and most shops make lots of money fixing Galaxy radios.
Is this because there are so many of them or because they breakdown so often? That is the one question I just have an answer for. Some are checked upon arrival from the factory and you never see them again. Some you see every few months for the same problem. It's a matter of the individual unit. It's kind of like buying a car. Every once in a while you get a bad one. Unfortunately, the problem rate with Galaxy radios is higher then with a new car purchase.
My old K40 radio in our cargo van has an echo board in place of the manufactured speech processor and it is mistaken for a Galaxy all the time. Some drivers even tell me to turn off my amp and then we'll see how good it really sounds. To everyone's surprise I don't have an amp or even an oversized final in that unit. The radio is just properly tuned and has a good antenna with great ground plane surface. The K40 Complete is mounted through the center of the roof and uses the whole steel roof as a ground place surface.
Is Galaxy better? In my opinion, no. Does it have more power? Yes, but I see a lot more old Cobras and Unidens still in service than I see old Galaxy radios.
Written By: Stan Wells