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Scanner / Receiver Antennas - For discussion of any type of receiving antenna used by a scanner or receiver base, mobile or handheld.

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Old 05-17-2018, 6:59 PM
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Default Looking for a magnet mount antenna

I知 looking for an inexpensive magnetic mount antenna for my vehicle, I prefer SMA connector type for my BCD436/BCD396 cause that would be the easiest/lower loss. I would like a wideband antenna but have have yet to find anything. I am mainly monitoring 700/800 MHz P25 Trunked systems with the exception of a few analog 400 band analog systems and one 150 MHz P25 trunked system. I have heard some 400 MHz on a buddies antenna before that is supposed to be 700/800 MHz.

How does a 700/800 MHz antenna effect my reception of a 400 MHz analog signal? Would I be missing a significant amount of traffic?

This is the one I saw that I kinda liked Wilson Electronics 12-inch Dual Band Magnet-Mount Antenna w/ SMA Male Connector https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KY4Q7DG..._dGH.AbZN04GN4, like I said I知 just looking for something inexpensive that I can toy around with until I get another vehicle that I am more interested into spending a lot of money on a more expensive antenna that I can hard mount. Not super concerned with how low quality the cable would be or anything.


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Old 05-17-2018, 8:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chaseboyer View Post
This is the one I saw that I kinda liked Wilson Electronics 12-inch Dual Band Magnet-Mount Antenna w/ SMA Male Connector https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KY4Q7DG..._dGH.AbZN04GN4,
That's a cellular antenna. It should work well for 700 and 800, and likely it's long enough to give decent performance on UHF, it's not going to be a great performer on VHF.

Plus it's Wilson, which I can tell you from personal experience, sucks. I had a Wilson amp in one of my old trucks. The amp worked well enough, but the cheap antenna they sent with it fell apart first time I tried to pull it off the truck. I replaced it with a proper NMO permanent mount with a well designed cellular antenna.




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Originally Posted by chaseboyer View Post
How does a 700/800 MHz antenna effect my reception of a 400 MHz analog signal? Would I be missing a significant amount of traffic?
Depends on a number of variables, so no one is going to be able to tell you for sure.
-How strong are the signals you are trying to receive? A mismatched antenna is going to make things worse, maybe even allowing nearby cellular base stations to overload the front end of your scanner.
-Depends on the exact antenna. The design will dictate a lot. Ideally you do need an antenna that is resonate on the frequencies you want to listen to. Trying to use a cellular or 700/800MHz antenna and expecting it to work well on UHF and VHF is likely going to lead to disappointment. You can easily do better.


Quote:
Originally Posted by chaseboyer View Post
I知 looking for an inexpensive magnetic mount antenna for my vehicle, I prefer SMA connector type for my BCD436/BCD396 cause that would be the easiest/lower loss. I would like a wideband antenna but have have yet to find anything. I am mainly monitoring 700/800 MHz P25 Trunked systems with the exception of a few analog 400 band analog systems and one 150 MHz P25 trunked system.
.
like I said I知 just looking for something inexpensive that I can toy around with until I get another vehicle that I am more interested into spending a lot of money on a more expensive antenna that I can hard mount. Not super concerned with how low quality the cable would be or anything.
Unless money is tight right now, you'd be better off just purchasing the right antenna and a mag mount. That way you can just move the antenna over to the new car when you have the mount installed. No reason to spend money on a cheap antenna now and then go out and buy a better one later. Just get the right stuff now.

Stick with NMO mounts. That'll give you the widest selection of antennas to choose from. It's the de-facto standard in the professional 2 way radio industry.

An NMO magnetic mount base with SMA connector:
Chrome: https://www.theantennafarm.com/catal...es-gm8smi-7512
Black: https://www.theantennafarm.com/catal...d-bgmsmai-4524
Both are $29.95. Maybe a bit more than you wanted to spend, but it's the right mount for the temporary installation, and you can always use it later on.

A multi-band antenna designed for the frequencies you want to listen to:
https://www.theantennafarm.com/catal...0-450-800-1050
$29.95. A known good antenna made by a reputable company that stands behind their product. It can easily be transferred over to your new car. It's designed to work on the VHF, UHF and 800MHz band, and will work just fine on the upper end of the 700MHz band where the stuff is you want to hear.
And, it'll likely outlast your car. I've got 20-30 year old Larsen antennas that are still going strong.

I know you want to keep the price down, but getting the right antenna should be your main goal. Cellular antennas will work fine for 700-800 and likely UHF, depending on the exact style, but will likely perform poorly on VHF. Getting the right gear now will save you money in the long run.
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Old 05-17-2018, 9:23 PM
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Good luck keeping that on your roof above 25 mph.

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Old 05-17-2018, 10:10 PM
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Good luck keeping that on your roof above 25 mph.

Mark
I had one like that from Wilson. The issue wasn't a weak magnet, it was that the little magnet was held in place with some glue. Try and take the antenna off and the magnet came out and stayed on the truck. Trying to get that magnet off the truck without scratching the paint was difficult. The rest of the antenna was junk.

I ran across another one someone tried to use at work. Simply a stripped piece of coax in a flexible tube with a magnet. Pull the cable hard enough and it slid right out.

Wilson isn't known for high quality stuff. The amps are OK, but the antennas are pure Chinese junk.
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Old 05-17-2018, 10:55 PM
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Opek VUCM-301-SMA

I've used this antenna on my trunk for a couple years and it has never fallen off. Even once through a car wash.

I've had great reception on my 396XT and 436HP.

I think it's a good value without having to permanently mount to a vehicle.

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Old 05-20-2018, 9:38 AM
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I live in an apartment on Long Island and have tried numerous antennas for my Home Patrol that I put on my window sill. I recently purchased a Tram 1089 - SMA antenna from Walmart for under $11 including tax. I picked it up at the store so there was no shipping charge. I can honestly say it’s the best antenna I’ve put on the HP. It is a mag mount and the reviews I’ve read on it on Amazon and other sites say it will stay put when traveling 80 miles an hour. I don’t have it on my car so I can’t verify that but it does firmly stick to my window sill which is 3/8” sheet rock over a metal stud. I am now hearing things that I haven’t been able to hear in many years when I had a different set up. The stuff I was able to hear is now booming. It’s a great antenna , read the reviews and I’m sure you’ll go for it. And the price can’t be beat.
I forgot to mention that it greatly improves reception of the local 800 mghz trunked system here in Suffolk County which has always been spotty.

Last edited by Don57; 05-20-2018 at 9:53 AM..
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Old Yesterday, 8:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chaseboyer View Post
I知 looking for an inexpensive magnetic mount antenna for my vehicle, I prefer SMA connector type for my BCD436/BCD396 cause that would be the easiest/lower loss. I would like a wideband antenna but have have yet to find anything. I am mainly monitoring 700/800 MHz P25 Trunked systems with the exception of a few analog 400 band analog systems and one 150 MHz P25 trunked system. I have heard some 400 MHz on a buddies antenna before that is supposed to be 700/800 MHz.

How does a 700/800 MHz antenna effect my reception of a 400 MHz analog signal? Would I be missing a significant amount of traffic?

This is the one I saw that I kinda liked Wilson Electronics 12-inch Dual Band Magnet-Mount Antenna w/ SMA Male Connector https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KY4Q7DG..._dGH.AbZN04GN4, like I said I知 just looking for something inexpensive that I can toy around with until I get another vehicle that I am more interested into spending a lot of money on a more expensive antenna that I can hard mount. Not super concerned with how low quality the cable would be or anything.


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I found an excellent rig. A Larsen wide band NMO with a Tram base with 5 inch magnetic mount equipped with rubber boot, using 58U of course.
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Old Yesterday, 8:43 AM
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Use one of these for the price can't be beat.
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