I’ve owned this Midland Alan 42 Multi Hand Held for about six months now. I bought it to use on my motorbike (believe it or not). The radio comes in a kit: CB Radio, battery holder for 6 AA Alkaline (1.5V batteries), battery holder for 8 AA Rechargeable (1.2V batteries), cigarette lighter adaptor, carry case, a rubber duck style aerial, and a battery charger. I installed a cigarette lighter adaptor socket on the bike and a truck style wing mirror mount for a CB aerial on my rear pannier rack. I bought a motorcycle PTT microphone and earpice kit and voila – instant bike CB!
One big problem though – No way of changing channels on the move . . . maybe I should just give up and get a car . . .
This is another one of those “Multi Band” CB Radios. Switch it on while holding the SC and LCR buttons and use the Channel change buttons to select between the different Euro settings (UK,I,I2,D,D2,EU,EC,E,F,PL,PX,RU,SW). As usual, the PL,PX,RU,SW options are non-operational (No TX, No RX). However, you do get FM/AM options in the appropriate country settings.
* Volume & On/Off
* DW: Dual Watch, allows you to monitor two channels.
* SC: Scan.
* ¤ (light): Screen backlight.
* EMG: Switched between Channel 9 & 19.
* LCR (A/F): Last Channel Recall or switches between AM and FM when in the appropriate country mode.
* H/L: High/Low Power setting (5W or 0.5W).
* Lock: Locks every button except the light button.
* Q.Up/Q.Down: These two buttons jump 10 channels (up or down) in one press.
* Channel Up/Down: These two buttons (on the side) change the channel up or down one channel per press..
The LCD display shows Signal Strength, channel number, country mode (ie. UK), FM or AM, Low or High Power, and RX or TX, DW, Lock, SC (scan). Pretty much all you need to know. The Signal Strength/Power Meter is a bar graph in the diplay window.
In use the radio proved to be very good. Even on a motorbike moving along at 50 mph with a helmet mic and earpice (It has a 3.5mm mono socket for audio out [speaker] and a 2.5mm mono socket for audio in [mic]), it was still possible to hear what was being said quite clearly. When used in hand held mode, it was still a good performer. Although the range falls through the floor when only using the rubber duck aerial.
I have used this radio connected up to my Solarcon A99 and plugged into a power supply at home, and the range is no different to my Midland Alan 48 Excel Multi (see other review). You could quite easily use this radio as an all purpose CB radio: Home, Mobile (in car or on bike!), and of course – Hand Held!
With the cigarette lighter attachment fitted instead of the battery pack, it looks like a big fist mike (you can remove the rubber duck aerial, as it has it’s own SO239 connector).
The radio comes with its own battery charger (but no batteries) that can be plugged into the rechargeable battery unit. It has a small LED to indicate when it’s charged.
This is a pretty good Hand Held, maybe not upto professional PMR radio standards (which tend to have impact resistant cases and die-cast alluminium construction and cost £200), but then this only costs £90. All in all, a damn fine hand held. The only thing that would make it better is if it was housed in a professional PMR style Walkie Talkie body, but then it would cost twice as much.