• Effective immediately we will be deleting, without notice, any negative threads or posts that deal with the use of encryption and streaming of scanner audio.

    We've noticed a huge increase in rants and negative posts that revolve around agencies going to encryption due to the broadcasting of scanner audio on the internet. It's now worn out and continues to be the same recycled rants. These rants hijack the threads and derail the conversation. They no longer have a place anywhere on this forum other than in the designated threads in the Rants forum in the Tavern.

    If you violate these guidelines your post will be deleted without notice and an infraction will be issued. We are not against discussion of this issue. You just need to do it in the right place. For example:
    https://forums.radioreference.com/rants/224104-official-thread-live-audio-feeds-scanners-wait-encryption.html

Pictures of my radio area

Status
Not open for further replies.

rabrol

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 19, 2009
Messages
196
Location
Edmonton, Alberta
#1
Unfortunately I don't have a full room of my own yet, but I've got half a room and that's a good start!

Here is a wide shot of my desk :


A closer view of items on the left :


What you are seeing is a Netset Pro 2032 and RadioShack Pro 2036 used for Airband monitoring.

The Uniden alarm clock scanner monitors any analog additional frequencies I want to focus in on - usually something I find during a search, but also handles airband comms if I need to monitor a third channel.

The Uniden BCT15X is primarily used for Public Safety (trunked system), usually holding on the division I live in.

The black laptop runs Unitrunker and SDR Sharp with DSD Plus. It also handles all the scanner programming.

Unitrunker is set to display the large Public Safety system so I can see PD, FD, EMS, and City radio traffic at a glance. This is displayed on the monitor on top of the 2 Airband scanners.

DSD Plus is used for discovery and logging of newer digital networks that are springing up.

Next you see the Uniden BCD436HP which is used mostly for DMR voice now, but pulls other duties from time to time.

The silver laptop is linked to an Airspy SDR, and also pulls data from a remote mounted ADSB Pi-Aware installation on the roof of my workplace a few miles away. Seen here displaying data from FlightRadar24 which I contribute to.

It is also my commercial radio programming PC. Running Windows 10, but with Virtual Machines for Windows 7 and Windows XP. The USB cords run in multiple directions to the radio programming areas.

Beneath it is a BCD996P2 which has multiple roles, including monitoring P25 systems (including a Phase 2 system nearby).



The 2 monitors you see in this machine are generally not used for radio duties. This is the "fun" PC set up for my online flying adventures and home network maintenance ;-) The picture on the right-hand monitor is from a topic in this forum, and is that to which I aspire!

Further on the right you see the bookcase that houses the PC on the lowest level and the commercial mobiles & HTs. You can see those better in the next pic.



So the top left is an Icom VHF mobile is used for monitoring Rural Emergency Services in addition to Railroad and regular VHF LMR traffic.

Next to it on the right is a UHF Vertex radio. Currently set to scan various Security Channels (malls, expo center etc) and the local News Helicopter channels.

The last mobile is a Motorola CDM1250 which simply monitors the local Air Ambulance helicopter channel.

Then we have the HTs.
The Icom passively monitors a NXDN48 trunked system. The XPR6550 to its left scans several DMR repeaters, but typically sits on Security at casinos & hospitals.

These 5 radios are also programmed for local HAM (analog and DMR) and can be used for QSOs on VHF & UHF.

Lastly, the LPE-200 gives me another Public Service monitoring option and is mostly used for ProVoice channels, or parking on a Fire, EMS or Office of Emergency Management channel during an incident.

This area has a USB cord for updating radio programming from the silver programming laptop.

Lastly I have a radio closet.


This is my main programming area. These are radios that are waiting to be programmed, tested and sold on the local used market. These are what have paid for everything else in the room and what will get me a NXDN scanner when they come available ;-)

The weakest link in all this is the antenna. It is simply a magmount 2m/70cm dual bander thrown on a baking tin on top of the programming closet, with a hole drilled in the ceiling to let it protrude into the attic.

It is split 8 ways via a TV multicoupler which works quite well to supply the scanners, and commercial HTs. The Unitrunker SDR has its own antenna, as do the commercial mobiles. Although all the those antennas are actually in this room :-( One day I'll get a discone, a 2m HAM antenna, 70cm antenna, 2 x 800MHz antennas mounted on the roof outside. Then things will get even better :)

Even though the images are linked above, it looks like you're going to see them again. Enjoy!
 

Attachments

N4GIX

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 27, 2015
Messages
1,747
Location
Hammond, IN
#7
Very nice! BTW, your "online flying adventures" is how I earn my living these days since I'm officially retired and physically unable to be on my feet more than 15 minutes at a time. I do the 3d CAD modeling of the aircraft and systems/avionics programming for them. I do both professional work for commercial simulators as well as 'recreational' work for Military Visualizations, LLC.
 

N9JIG

Sheriff
Moderator
Joined
Dec 14, 2001
Messages
3,878
Location
Far NW Valley
#9
Looking good!

I have tried the multiple computers but and settled on having just 2, albeit with loads of RAM and powerful processors.

I like the laptop stands as hutches and I really kind of wanted to go all white like you did but I could not find an appropriate table. I almost have the CFO/wife convinced to let me get a risible desk for the computer and phone part of the office, then I can replace the black radio desk with a white one like you have.

One word of caution: DO NOT get one of those ion based air cleaners! They cause the white furniture to become dust magnets and they become almost impossible to clean! I proved that when I had an all white office!
 
Joined
Feb 24, 2001
Messages
65,126
Location
Virginia
#13
Very nice and impressive setup!. Definitely gives Rich a run for his money. What model Icom radio are you using to passively monitor that NXDN4800 system?. Thought about getting an Icom to do the very same thing passively monitoring a NXDN trunked system.
 

WatnNY

Database Admin
Database Admin
Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
1,052
Location
Knoxville, TN
#16
For someone who doesn't have a room full yet, you sure have found an excellent way to use the amount of space you have for an awesome radio set up!

Mike
 

rabrol

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 19, 2009
Messages
196
Location
Edmonton, Alberta
#18
Very nice and impressive setup!. Definitely gives Rich a run for his money. What model Icom radio are you using to passively monitor that NXDN4800 system?. Thought about getting an Icom to do the very same thing passively monitoring a NXDN trunked system.
Thanks for the comments everyone.

Regarding the ICOM passive NXDN monitoring, I learned how to do it through the following site - http://www.cqcq.ca/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=27. The radios I'm using are F-4161DS for the UHF bands. I've got some extra units here, so if you're interested PM me.

For VHF NXDN repeaters & simplex I occasionally use Kenwood NX-700s when I have them in, but they will not follow trunked channels.

I sold a bunch of the Vertex this week, so now the top shelf is clear you can partially see the DC Power distribution panel. I don't have a rack yet, so it is just sitting on the shelf. It handles up to 90 Amps total power, and distributes 12 x 13.8V feeds. Not all of them are wired up presently.



As I mentioned, the antennas are my weakest link and somewhat embarrasing. I've picked up an old Butternut wideband for mounting on the roof, but haven't put it together yet. So I'm stuck with the following. The small antenna seen here came with an RTL dongle and is currently supplying an SDR with an 800MHz signal for Unitrunker.



The VHF / UHF dual bander is next to it. You can only see the bottom section. It is just a Radio Shack 2m / 70cm magmount sitting on a turkey roasting pan. No wonder the wife can't find it ;-)

That simple mobile antenna feeds 8 radios (receive only) through the TV distributor seen below. Picked it up on eBay. Yes, it is 75ohm, but it does the job surprisingly well.



Lastly, my secondary antenna set sits on the top of a bookcase on another item from the kitchen!



The antenna setup is very basic. Once I get the Butternut built, I'm expecting to receive much clearer signals. Looking forward to that day. Was looking at a roof-mount tripod online just the other day ;-) One step at a time...
 

Attachments

N9JIG

Sheriff
Moderator
Joined
Dec 14, 2001
Messages
3,878
Location
Far NW Valley
#19
Don't worry about the 75 Ohm/ 50 Ohm issue, it is non-existent. 75 ohms work just as well for scanner antennas as 50 ohms, sometimes better. TV distribution amps and couplers as well as F-Connectors work great for scanners.

If I didn't already have a large investment in Stridberg multicouplers I would be using TV equipment for my scanner antenna distribution.
 
Joined
Mar 12, 2014
Messages
1,062
#20
I'll bet the real trick was finding a NXDN compatible roasting pan! My dongle antenna was definitely a weak point. I used RG6 coax to an outdoor 800mhz yagi and it really opened up what I could hear.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top