A. Your antenna is the single most important factor affecting VHF radio range, and three key parameters determine antenna performance: gain, height and length. The higher the gain (decibel rating), the greater the strength and distance of the radio signal. Increasing the antenna height can also increase distance, so mount your antenna as high as possible, such as on top of your boat's hardtop or radar arch. You can also get greater range with a longer antenna — it has a larger radiating element.