DISCLAIMER: There are many antennas, radios, satellite tracking programs, et al out there that are being used to successfully work the FM ham satellites. What I "promote" on my sites and in my presentations are items that I have purchased and/or use and have personal experience with, and know are currently supported by their distributors. Also - remember where I am coming from: keeping it simple, using equipment many hams already own. "Simple" to me means being able to walk outside with an antenna in one hand and a HT in the other - and successfully work the FM satellites.
OK - with that out of the way, let's talk about radios.
Although it is preferable to work the FM sats in full-duplex mode (where you can hear the downlink while keying your mic), only one currently-manufactured HT does that well in our VHF/UHF mode well: the Kenwood TH-D72a. The fulll-duplex capability of the Alinco DJ-G7T looked promising - but In V/U mode, its sub-band receiver sensitivity is gruesome, and has not been improved even with firmware updates.
If you desire to work true, full-duplex, you can also use a second radio in your setup. Or a scanner for receiving.
But in hundreds of contacts and scores of demos and presentations in front of live audiences the past few years, I have been using the Yaesu FT-60R very successfully. It is NOT a full-duplex HT. BUT you can program "split frequencies" in one memory: You can program 440 receive and 2M transmit in a single memory location. Programming charts for the FM sats are over at http://www.work-sat.com
I own too many HTs. (There ... I said it. First step in the "HT addiction" recovery process ... ) Most retail for more than the FT-60R. But the FT-60R is a GREAT value for anyone looking for a solid 2M/440 handheld. The FT-60R debuted at Dayton in 2004. It was a great bargain then - and remains so today. Among its features ...
-receives (essentially) 108mHz to a gig
-large, legible display
-alphanumeric channel labeling
-easy to manually program (one-page cheat sheet available)
-bulletproof case design*
-strongest belt clip of any ham HT chassis on the market
-great receive audio
... as well as a unique battery setup: You can populate the optional FBA-25 AA case with either NiMH cells or alkalines, and have full TX power available (if you really need it).
Side note on batteries: I have been using Maha's 2700mAH NiMH AA cells in a pair of FBA-25 cases - with one of Maha's intelligent AA cell chargers. A great combination. Properly maintained, I should achieve about 700 complete discharge-charge cycles from them. I am amused at the proclamation by Sanyo that their eneloop AA NiMH cells can be charged "1500" times - which is contrary to most scientific literature regarding the capabilities of consumer-grade NiMH cells. (A little discrepancy between the scientific community and marketing people, I guess ... )
There are some wonderful, long-discontinued full-duplex HTs that many are using for the sats, like the Icom IC-W32a, Kenwood TH-D7 and TH-D79, and Yaesu's FT-470/FT-51/FT-530 models.
SO ... You do not have to go out and purchase the 'D72a for $460 to successfully work the FM satellites. (Heck, for the price of that HT, you can purchase TWO Yaesu FT-60R radios AND an Arrow 146/437-10 Satellite Antenna - AND have plenty of change! (Not to demean the 'D72 - it has integrated GPS/APRS and a LOT more features ... )
BOTTOM LINE: For the VHF/UHF FM voice birds, just improve your stock antennas on HTs you probably already have, and get working the birds!