Ortovox 3+ Avalanche Transceiver | Review

Ortovox have designed an affordable, yet still powerful, transceiver in the Ortovox 3+


Weight: 210 g
Size : 122 x 73 x 27 mm
Battery Life: 250 hours send mode
Search Width: 40 m
Maximum Range: 40 m
Power Supply: 1x AA Battery
Price: £220


We’ve put a lot of nice kit in the Mpora Backcountry Guide. Some of the stuff we’ve been most impressed by though has been the accessible kit – the kind of stuff that’s high performance while still being affordable (affordable by skiing standards, at least).

Coming in at just £220, the Ortovox 3+ Avalanche Transceiver requires just a single AA battery to power for 250 hours in send mode. Ortovox have done well here to make an extremely capable transceiver, at a price point that won’t scare the masses away from getting involved with avalanche safety.

“The Ortovox 3+ comes with Ortovox’s tried and tested Smart Antenna Technology”

Being 2019, it’s great to see all entry-level transceivers packing three antennas. The Ortovox 3+ comes with Ortovox’s tried and tested Smart Antenna Technology – meaning that the product will select the best antenna to send the signal from, based on your orientation whilst buried within the snow.

This means that as long as your companions are on the ball and trained up, they’ll have a much higher chance of getting the strongest signal lock on the transceiver and therefore be able to hone in on your location faster.

Just like the Black Diamond Recon BT, the Ortovox 3+ has also been reduced to the bare essentials in an effort to reduce the potential for confusion during high-stress situations.

This simplification has led to a cleaning of the whole front of the transceiver, with only one single flag button visible on the front of the unit and a single button that pops up at the top of the unit whilst in search mode (which easily reverts the transceiver to send). This makes the 3+ extremely easy to use, no matter how high-stress the scenario you’re in.

The circular display also keeps up the simplified theme, with the distance numbers taking front and centre – and direction arrows flanking the outside. The display also notes multiple burials and battery health.

“This makes the 3+ extremely easy to use, no matter how high-stress the scenario you’re in”

Note: The Ortovox issued a precautionary recall for certain 3+ transceivers that were running out of date software. Head over to the Ortovox website to see if your transceiver has been affected. All transceivers sold by official Ortovox dealers will be fully updated.

Of course, it should go without saying that an avalanche transceiver is only as effective as the user operating it. Get yourself out there on an avalanche safety course to practice how to effectively and efficiently rescue your companions.

After this course, get out every other week and practice how to use your transceiver (familiarity with this kind of kit is key to efficiently completing a rescue). Don’t have snow where you live? No worries. Just bury one or two space transceivers in a pile of leaves and search for them using your shiny new transceiver.

You May Also Like

The Mpora Backcountry Ski Guide

The Best Ski Touring Accessories 2019 – 2020

The Best Avalanche Safety Products 2019 – 2020


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