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Midland 1001LWX Review (CB Radio Review)

Midland 1001LWX Review (CB Radio Review)

This Midland 1001LWX review was written from personal experience. Features and limitations were equally examined. So if you intend to get a CB radio for your truck, and the 1001LWX Midland is one of the options you’re considering, then it’s a good idea to read this review.

Truckers whose day job involves spending a large part of the day on the road know that 2-way radios are indispensable. The Midland 1001LWX CB radio is one such radio that is specifically targeted at truckers, off-roaders, etc., who desire an inexpensive gadget that nails the basic performance expected from communication devices.

In terms of specification and performance, the 1001LWX and similar ones like it occupy a necessary niche in the crowded CB radio market. What you get is a simple radio, at a modest, budget price that comes with only the most essential features you need to communicate.

Let’s take a comprehensive look at the device and see why so many truckers and technicians recommend it as one of the best budget CB Radio.

Specifications and Features of the Midland 1001LWX CB Radio

Weight: 1.6 lbs

Dimensions: 4.5 X 1.75 X 1.75 inches

Color: Black

Channels: 40

Batteries: 2 AA

Power: 4 watts

Audio Output: 3 watts at 8 ohms

Default Channel: 19

Selectivity: 45 dB + 1000uV

Frequency Range: 26.965 – 27.405 MHz

Speaker: Built-in

Midland 1001LWX Review: What I Like and Dislike. 

On opening the box, you’d find one CB radio, one microphone, the mounting bracket, and hardware. You would also find the manual which contains an important guide on how to install/mount the unit and get it ready for use.

The included corded mic can be replaced with a different one if you wish. And though an antenna is not included in the pack, it is quite easy to get one because it is compatible with almost all CB radio antennas found in the market. Besides, if you are purchasing this as a replacement CB radio, your previous antenna would most likely do just fine.

The manual is written in English and easy to follow with illustrations that would prove quite helpful. However, if you’ve been using CB radios for some time, it is a safe bet you won’t need the manual to mount it since there is nothing complicated about the mounting bracket.

The concern though might come from getting a space in your truck to mount it. Fortunately, creating enough space shouldn’t be a problem because the 1001LWX is very compact.

But it is not so small that you’d have to squint to make out the writings on the front panel or display.

Appearance

Overall, the design is sleek and modern with a bright LCD display you shouldn’t have any problems reading.

Almost all the buttons you need to operate the radio are on the front panel. These include the Automatic Noise Limiter (ANL) knob, RF Gain, CB/Weather mode switch, Channel Selector, CB/PA button, and the audio volume.

There is also an LCD meter that shows the strength of the receiver/transmitting signal and operating channel.

At the rear, the panel comes with a standard SO-239 coax cable; a jack each for the speaker and public address system; and a power cable that is not detachable.

Finally, there is the U-shaped mounting bracket you’d use to secure the radio to the area selected to mount the unit.

Channel Scanning and locking

A 40-channel digital tuner is included in the design. There are several benefits to this. For instance:

  • Scanning for an active channel is easy and fast and
  • It is quite easy to lock into your preferred channel

There are also several weather channels with weather alert in the design. The included weather channel also makes it easy to connect to the strongest weather channel in the location as the radio automatically searches and hooks onto it.

You would love this feature if you are traveling. Weather alerts and channels are important in planning your movement and take measures to avoid adverse weather conditions.

The Transmitter

The 2-way has a decent transmitting power of 4 watts with an excellent range in ideal weather conditions coupled with a good antenna. It comes with the 4-pin microphone connector. This makes the unit compatible with many other mics and easy to use.

Though not the best in the market, the transmit sound quality is good and anybody listening at the other end won’t have problems picking out the words. This more than average sound quality is aided a great deal by the acceptable modulation.

The Receiver/Voice output

For such a minimalist transceiver, the receiver is rather excellent. On a clear band, there is hardly any background static whether induced by the radio or coming from external sources. This could be due to a combination of the squelch control, RF gain and Automatic Noise Limiter (ANL).

The ANL effectively cuts out the ignition and fuel pump noise that is a common complaint with mediocre radios mounted in vehicles. But some folks complain that very loud fan noise sometimes constitute an interference problem.

As expected, your radio would lose some sensitivity when you utilize this feature. This is common with all models equipped with the ANL.

The squelch control may leave you puzzled though. Since it is the hysteresis type, it needs a very strong signal to activate it. So some noise might get through and cause annoying interference. But once the squelch control opens, it works excellently.

It should be made clear this is not actually a design flaw. All squelch with this type of squelch circuit work the same way. One advantage of this is it makes the radio more conformable to use.

You would be well-advised to leave the RF gain alone if you want to receive far-off signals. Though it is understandable that eliminating static or background noise is always ideal, restrict usage of RF gain to only nearby parties since the close range won’t interfere with reception.

By now, you would have cottoned on to the fact that while using the 1001LWX and all things considered, the signals are received loud and clear via the speaker. Obviously, this is because the squelch control, ANL, and RF gain actually work the way they are supposed to.

Finally

When you switch on the radio for the first time, it powers to channel 19. This default channel is the most commonly used channel by truckers. Many users actually love this about this device.

There is no dedicated button for emergency channel 9. Actually most veterans CB radio users consider the channel 9 button superfluous

Pros

  • It is very affordable
  • Offers good value at the price point
  • It is compact and can fit into small spaces easily
  • It is very easy to use
  • Easy to install
  • Great voice output
  • Channel scan and locking is quite easy

Cons

  • It is just a basic radio
  • Manual scanning of weather channels can be tedious
  • Does not have in-built SWR meter

Conclusion

The Midland 1001LWX is the sort of radio you’d want if you are looking for a no-frills CB radio to handle the most basic communication tasks in your vehicle while you are on the road.

The device is versatile and is designed to be compatible with superior accessories such as CB radio mic and antenna. And sticking to its basic template, mounting, installing and using it is quite easy.

While the radio is great for truckers looking for simplicity in their CB radio, other enthusiasts including beginners would love the bare-bones design that makes it quite easy to master.

Some of the features include 40 channels, transmitting power of 4 watts, a decent range plus a host of features that combine to make sure the received signal is devoid of static and interference from external sources.

You would get your money’s worth from it.