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Coax Cable and Connectors For general discussion of all things pertaining to coax cable, wave guide or any other medium for passing RF energy. This includes connectors, weather proofing and grounding.

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Old 02-02-2009, 3:19 PM
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Default Radioshack antenna coax question

If I had to rely on my local radio shack for scanner antenna coax, which would be the best model - style to purchase. I need a 75 foot length of coax for an 800 mhz Maxrad yagi for my pro-106. I dont have the cash for the thick stuff that I usually buy from other vendors.
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Old 02-02-2009, 3:34 PM
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For Radioshack, the best would probably be RG-6, or RG-8 if they have it. Just avoid the RG-58 and you should be fine.
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Old 02-02-2009, 3:36 PM
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If *I* had to rely on radio shack coax, I'd take up stamp collecting. Seriously, they sell the worst crap coax on the planet. I would mail order something - anything, from anyone but them.
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Old 02-02-2009, 3:44 PM
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thanks for the reply, I used up all of my LMR-400 Times Microwave cable, I completed a 75 foot run and a 50 foot run of the LMR thick stuff. Now I am in need of more, but its costly, so I thought I would ask you guys about RS if they had any quality coax... I guess they really dont. In the last 10 minutes, I found some RG-8X ( a 75 foot length w/ PL-259's on the ends ) on ebay for a pretty good price, I believe around 35 or 40 dollars. I may go with the ebay stuff. Thanks for the assistance.

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Old 02-02-2009, 4:14 PM
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Kevin, I agree with ZZ0468 don't waste your time or money. I got a piece of LMR400 off ebay not to long ago for not much more than your looking to spend, it was buy it now, the fellow didn't know much about it other than was printed on the outside jacket, said he found it cleaning out a warehouse. Ive seen alot of people go to RS and buy a sputnik and cable and not get much better reception than they had before, knowing it wasn't the antenna.
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Old 02-02-2009, 4:15 PM
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Save your money. RG-8x is almost as bad as RG-58 at 800 MHz. RG-8x (also known as mini-8) is not the same as RG-8 and much more loss, especially at higher frequencies.

Last edited by n5ims; 02-02-2009 at 4:57 PM.. Reason: Fix adjective
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Old 02-02-2009, 4:34 PM
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This article is a good explanation of coax quality with a chart at the bottom that pretty much sums it up.
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Old 02-02-2009, 4:55 PM
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Quote:
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This article is a good explanation of coax quality with a chart at the bottom that pretty much sums it up.
GREAT ARTICLE... thanks, I will probably now hold out for more LMR-400 for my 75 foot run, to try to eliminate some db loss due to the length.
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Old 02-02-2009, 5:42 PM
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You may want to check out this thread: http://www.radioreference.com/forums...-purchase.html
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Old 02-02-2009, 5:49 PM
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Default another good link, you guys R great

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You may want to check out this thread: http://www.radioreference.com/forums...-purchase.html
I just found good LMR-400 coax on ebay. Thats where I am going to buy it, Thanks to all.
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Old 02-03-2009, 4:23 AM
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I've said it before and I'll say it again; save your money, trot on down to Wal Mart and pick up a 500' roll of RG6-U quad shield for less than what you'd pay for 100' of Times Microwave LMR400. You'll need appropriate connectors and adapters, pretty darn cheap too. Now when the argument over connector/adapter loss starts up again please ignore it for the sake of your sanity and don't forget to tape seal all outdoor connections, you'll be OK. Don't ask what to do with all that leftover coax or I just might tell you something unexpected like maybe there are more antennas or a CATV installation in your future.

E-BAY??? You must be mad! Never mind, you'll find what you need at Wal Mart if you're a smart shopper.
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Old 02-03-2009, 6:33 AM
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I've said it before and I'll say it again; save your money, trot on down to Wal Mart and pick up a 500' roll of RG6-U quad shield for less than what you'd pay for 100' of Times Microwave LMR400. You'll need appropriate connectors and adapters, pretty darn cheap too. Now when the argument over connector/adapter loss starts up again please ignore it for the sake of your sanity and don't forget to tape seal all outdoor connections, you'll be OK. Don't ask what to do with all that leftover coax or I just might tell you something unexpected like maybe there are more antennas or a CATV installation in your future.

E-BAY??? You must be mad! Never mind, you'll find what you need at Wal Mart if you're a smart shopper.
I appologize for being nieve. I never knew that WalMart was an option. I had no idea that WalMart stocked and sold that type of cable. I looked back at the coax db loss comparison table, and I believe the range of the RG6-U would work fine for me. I shall take a trip down to WalMart to see what they have in stock. Thanks for the tip. I always figured that RS was a place to go for coax, but always remembered that thgier coax was crap. I never thought to go to WallyWorld for coax. Plus, I don't even think RS stocks RG6-U Thanks again.
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Old 02-03-2009, 6:49 AM
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Kevin, you can get the RG6 for about $20 for 100ft at Wallyworld, in the electronic section as Warren stated.
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Old 02-03-2009, 6:51 AM
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Kevin, you can get the RG6 for about $20 for 100ft at Wallyworld, in the electronic section as Warren stated.
Thanks again bro, I never knew RG6 was an option, especially to even find it at WallyWorld. I am headed there today. Do I keep my eyes open for RG6 or RG6-U ?
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Old 02-03-2009, 7:05 AM
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Thanks again bro, I never knew RG6 was an option, especially to even find it at WallyWorld. I am headed there today. Do I keep my eyes open for RG6 or RG6-U ?
Get the high priced quad shield stuff. ("High priced" is a relative term in Wallyworld.)

I have 100 feet of it running through a radio studio suite, past all sorts of noise sources, and it is working great.

Yes, there is an SWR mismatch. The bottom line is the amount of signal provided to the receiver compared to the amount of noise.
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Old 02-03-2009, 3:16 PM
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You're quite welcome, and the only thing of consequence to remember is "RG6 quad cable", the rest is just techie stuff that only serves to confuse sales people. Oh, you also should remember the quad takes it's own F connectors so get the right ones.

Never mind the "SWR mismatch" which incidentally is a conflict in terms, standing wave ratio and impedance mismatch are related but not the same thing. Anyway, it's so small as to be inconsequential in this application which is another reason why I said to ignore the argument and just go for it. Using CATV cable for scanners is a long proven success story and as you see we're in agreement in the matter.
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Old 02-03-2009, 5:10 PM
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As stated, it's an impedance mismatch, which in turn, give you a small amount of SWR. But its not "SWR Mismatch" lol.
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Old 02-04-2009, 1:46 AM
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I too use Phillips brand RG6 Quad Shield from WalMart. Does just what I need it to do for my two Radio Shack 20-176's, (AKA Sputnik). For the price and performance I'm happy. I found the compression style F type connectors with tool at Lowes.

...as a side note I get my LMR 400 from these folks:
BSC - 02/4/09 - YOUR SOURCE FOR NEW AND USED WIRELESS, AUDIO, VIDEO AND DATA EQUIPMENT.
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Old 02-04-2009, 6:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Taloniilm View Post
I too use Phillips brand RG6 Quad Shield from WalMart. Does just what I need it to do for my two Radio Shack 20-176's, (AKA Sputnik). For the price and performance I'm happy. I found the compression style F type connectors with tool at Lowes.
I've picked up several quad-shield pigtails, which have the solid connectors (same as the pre-made cables sold at Walmart.

I assumed that the connectors were special in how they handled the shields. Specifically, are all of the shields tied together (bonded) to the shell, or do some of them float?

Do compression connectors take full advantage of quad-shield cable (are there special ones for quad cable)?

Can you (someone) detail how the cable/connectors are configured?

Thanks.

Amp
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Old 02-04-2009, 7:28 AM
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Quote:
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As stated, it's an impedance mismatch, which in turn, give you a small amount of SWR. But its not "SWR Mismatch" lol.
That's what I get for posting at work.
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