Most of the time the CB radio market is relatively static. The technology has been around for over a half century and strict FCC controls limit the usual electronic gadget ‘arms race’. However the winter of 2010 saw some surprising changes.
Cobra started the party with the announcement of the 50th Anniversary Edition of their classic ’29’. The Limited Edition radio offered a Cobra first multi-color selectable display. The radio was an instant hit and became a hot Christmas item. The Cb world turned shortly thereafter when Cobra announced they would only produce a limited quantity of the new model and is expected to be gone as quickly as it came in late January.
When all the headlines were going Cobra’s way Connex stepped up to the plate. As a leading manufacturer of 10 meter radios it was a surprise to see how ambitious Connex was in revamping their product line. First they canceled models like the 3400HP and the 4600-Turbo then announced they would introduce several new models.
The most interesting of these new models was the ‘Big Betty’. When pictures of the Big Betty’s risque faceplate were released it caused a stir in the normally placid market. Again product shortages helped make the new entry a hot item.
Just as things looked to settle word came of possible the biggest development of the winter. Citing component availability issues Ranger communications canceled the popular and powerful RCI-63FFC4. The cancellation came as a blow to enthusiasts as the 63FFC4 was amongst the most technically advanced and powerful models of its type. Although Ranger still has two similar models on the market there is no way of knowing if they will find the required finals to make another ultra-high power series.
Not to be outdone Connex was not finished. Sometime around Christmas Connex announced their entry into the CB radio market. The new CX-366CE uses the same chassis of the 3400HP but has the interior components of a traditional CB. It even has the six color selectable LED display.
Lets hope 2011 is as full of surprises as 2010 was.