Well, I have a Standard Horizon HX851, and it's great, but it's not perfect - lack of a volume knob (shared with Yaesu ham HT's); very bulky; etc. It has very eccentric controls with both volume and squelch controlled by a not inawkward combination of key presses. The DSC
functions are really great -- position poll
back and forth from the mother ship
Also, it is the number one thing to grab on the way to the life raft -- better than any flare to alert passing ships as to your presence. I have an AA battery tray and a bunch of zip-locked lithium AA batteries in the grab bag to keep the HX851 going in the raft, if it -- God forbid -- ever comes to that.
I actually loved very much a Cobra handheld VHF which I bought cheap
in the UK; can't remember the model, something 325 I think. It was heavy but had great sound, great reception
, much better battery life than the SH, much more convenient controls (knobs for both volume and squelch), in general a great value for very little money
. It was stolen in Cherbourg out of my dinghy
I also have an old Icom handheld -- actually a very good radio, but it was built prior to lithium ion batteries. The old NiCads are not very good anymomre.