“how to find the best cheap products” — kiplinger
In this review:
  1. Best Cheap Cordless Phones
  2. Cordless Phone Reviews
  3. Cordless Phone Handsets
  4. Discount Cordless Phones Features Comparison Table

Cheap Cordless Phones Buying Guide

Cell phones may be displacing landlines as the primary means of voice communication for many people, but cheap cordless phones retain a hold on the market. The availability of a dedicated frequency for cordless models has sparked a proliferation of products that aren't troubled by interference from wireless routers or appliances.

Related Guides:
Bluetooth Headsets, Smartphones and VOIP
Better yet, the best cheap cordless phones won't mess with your budget. We found models with one or two handsets going for less than $50.

The main players in this end of the market are Panasonic, Uniden, and Vtech. There are plenty of other brands, of course, such as GE and Motorola, but the Big Three dominate and are well represented on our list of top picks.

Our research determined that the two best cheap cordless phones are the Vtech CS6719 (starting at $20/one handset; $30/two handsets), which comes with an appealing set of features, and the Panasonic KX-TG6512B (starting at $43/two handsets), which sports more features than typically found on bargain phones and runs on two AAA rechargeable batteries; both models hit a high note with users for sound quality. In the second-best basket sits Vtech's CS6114 (starting at $15/one handset), a good, basic phone with a bargain basement price and decent performance. The Uniden UN-D1760 (starting at $25/one handset; $45/two handsets), another runner-up model, supports up to 12 handsets and 100 directory entries and puts in a respectable performance. We aren't terribly impressed with the GE 28522AE1 (starting at $30/one handset) given that users share more than a smattering of complaints about poor audio quality.

Review continues below

Recent technological advances have significantly improved the overall performance of cordless phones, regardless of price point. Any model worth buying should support the DECT 6.0 standard, as do all the cheap cordless phones we researched. The digital technology underlying DECT 6.0 has definite advantages over the analog (radio wave) technology used by earlier generations of cordless phones. For starters, DECT 6.0 phones operate at 1.9GHz, so there shouldn't be any interference from the wireless networks running at 2.4GHz that are everywhere these days. Additionally, DECT 6.0 phones provide better sound quality and range (i.e., the distance you can roam from the phone's base before losing the signal), about 30 percent longer battery life, and more privacy (calls made on phones using the older protocols could be intercepted).

Technological underpinnings aside, budget cordless phones are fairly Spartan. Standard features include call waiting and caller ID, and a directory that stores phone numbers for important contacts. All have an LCD display, which may or may not be backlit; ditto for the keypad. Other features vary by model. The number of possible handsets supported by the base, for example, ranges up to 12 but may be limited to just one. An integrated answering machine is unusual in this price range, although one of our best cheap cordless phone picks includes it; the more common feature is voicemail support, a service that must be arranged with your telecommunications provider. Most cheap cordless phones include a speakerphone option and a few boast a headset jack -- two features that are very popular with buyers. Other nifty functions that sometimes show up on cheaper models are mute, silent ring, handset locator and/or intercom, and last-number(s) redial.

In terms of performance, our reading of consumer reviews found that call quality trumps all else, and the best cheap cordless phones score admirably. Range is also important, but the DECT 6.0 technology seems to have made this issue moot. We also found that ease-of-use and battery life matter to consumers, the latter generating comments about units that failed to hold a charge.

Review continues below

Prices for cordless phones can reach hundreds of dollars, but there's no need to go there. Reviews indicate the best cheap models are more than adequate. Although expert reviews of budget cordless phones are scarce, we found enough useful posts written by consumers to help inform your buying decision.

by Michael Sweet (Google+ Profile)

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Best Cheap Cordless Phone

Vtech CS6719
Gold Medal

Vtech CS6719

The Vtech CS6719 is a well-featured cordless phone with very good call quality and reception. This is the best overall value among our picks.

Read Full Review and Compare Prices »
Panasonic KX-TG6512B
Gold Medal

Panasonic KX-TG6512B

A reasonably priced phone packed with features, the Panasonic KX-TG6512B comes with the usual budget phone features plus a headset jack, call-block function, and more.

Read Full Review and Compare Prices »

Good Cheap Cordless Phones

Vtech CS6114
Gold Medal

Vtech CS6114

For the most basic of cordless phones, check out the CS6114. It's no-frills and very low cost and delivers solid reception.

Read Full Review and Compare Prices »
Uniden UN-D1760
Gold Medal

Uniden UN-D1760

A reliable cordless phone with good sound, Uniden's UN-D1760 supports up to 12 handsets and a 100-entry phonebook, more than most budget-priced models.

Read Full Review and Compare Prices »
 

Don't Bother

GE 28522AE1

This phone from GE is one of the few budget models with an integrated answering machine but users critique its call quality.

Read more »

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