I've always been an Icom fan, and still am (my fixed sets are icom), but in the handheld vhf case, I went for the HT640 after reading quite a few good reviews online.
Got it from mesltd - http://www.mesltd.co.uk/product_info...roducts_id=958
and it arrived next day. The speaker is very clear and loud, and the battery seems to last an age - my criteria for the thing whatever brand was to have a lithium ion battery pack, since after years of faultless operation, my old Standard HX350S finally would take no more charge into the nicad battery.
If you wait a while, I'm sure the price of the new Icom M71 will come down, and that looks like a well tidy radio.