Originally Posted by scannerowner
I'm not sure exactly if it's hurting me too bad, but I don't know why the transmitter only 10 miles away is barely getting anything. I know people in the Ozarks probably have worse reception if this is the case. If I go a few miles East then the reception gets better. If I go West and South then I get nothing. I'm not sure if paging towers are interfering too much or not?! Has anyone heard any new TGs from the counties that may have gone live this week?
EDIT: I now realize you are using Unidens so most of the below should not apply. I missed the info in your signature tag!
The info below would apply if you are using GRE so I'll leave it as it may help some of the other users with GRE's that may have problems.
It's actually very possible that a nearby paging transmitter is shutting down the front end.
Try testing with the NOAA WX channels and see if you can receive distant WX stations. If so, you are probably ok.
My GRE's are almost useless for anything VHF due to all the paging sites near me. I'm situated between several hospitals and each one has a paging transmitter atop their roofs.
My PSR 600 will usually show full bars on many VHF frequencies even though there is no signal on the frequency. That can also be a sign that you are experiencing overload. Paging systems do go off the air for a minute or so though so you should see a signal strength increase on the control channel I would think when the paging site goes quiet. Of course you could have multiple paging sites on different frequencies. You would need to monitor them all at the same time to try and catch a time period where they are all off the air.
My problem is from three frequencies, two in the 152 band and one in the 158 band.
The one in the 158 band is seldom used so I don't usually need that filter inline.
Your problem could also be FM broadcast stations if your vhf signal levels are always low on that tower. FM stations are almost always broadcasting so you can't really test easily. You could build a stub filter cut for 98 MHz and see if your MOSWIN signal improves. Coax stub filters are pretty wide banded though so if not cut right, you could be attenuating the desired signal. An easier way is to purchase the FM Trap from radioshack along with any needed adapters and put that inline in your coax.
You may be very surprised at how much your VHF reception improves.
Many here do that and it does work well very often.
Of course radioshack is very good about taking things back so you can always return everything if it does not help any. If it does help, I'd still take it all back and then invest in a high quality FM Trap such as the one PAR Electronics sells. They are costlier but are worth every penny. There are other makers as well but I'm not familiar with any others.
Plus a high quality trap will have the proper connectors on it already so you don't add any extra loss by using adapters like will happen if you try the FM Trap from RS.
I also have overload on my GRE's and Unidens from paging sites in the 929 and 931 MHz bands. Dale at PAR built me a custom notch filter that notches from 929 to 932 MHz. It works very well when I monitor 900 MHz systems.
The other option you may have is borrow a Uniden 396 or 996 if you know someone that has one. Then put the Winston site in that and see how it comes in. I find the Unidens are not affected by overload or desense from paging or FM Broadcast like the GRE's are. The GRE's are more sensitive though which can be a good thing or a bad thing. Bad if you already have overload or desense!
Do you have an outdoor antenna?
That may be all you need if not but it will also pull in more paging and FM broadcast crud along with a stronger intended signal.
An outdoor antenna also gets you away from devices inside your home that may be getting into your radios. Use good quality coax like LMR-400 even if the run is short.
At a minimum, I'd try the FM Trap from radioshack as you can get that locally and it's easy to stick inline as long as you get the needed adapters. The RS trap has female F fittings so you need to convert from female F to a male and a female BNC. Take it all back if it does not help at all!
EDIT: I was thinking you had GRE radios! Wrong person.
It seems you have Uniden's so pretty much forget all the above. The Uniden's are not usually affected by desense issues like the GRE's. Unless you live with a paging site in your back yard, the paging sites should not be the cause of the problem.
I think you did tell me the WInston site is an omni pattern also so I'd think you should get decent reception being only 10 miles out.
Does the CC's site or tower ID match what is listed in the database for the Winston site?
You can see that info if you use Unitrunker or Pro96com.
I think you can also do a manual add of the CC frequency and the Uniden's will display some of the info including the site ID.
I only ask that just in case the CC you are receiving is not really the Winston site.