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Budget mobile scanner antenna choices

Joined
Apr 9, 2018
Messages
63
Location
Edmonton , Alberta , Canada
Hello all ,

Just wanted to run a question past all of you , Im looking for the best performance out of an antenna for a simple mobile scanner setup ... I mainly use it when on highway trips here in Alberta , Canada . I like to monitor all of the trucking vhf Ladd channels , gmrs on my uniden 125 handheld ... Currently I have a nmo mag mount with a no name vhf/UHF antenna that I purchased a few years ago from a local guy who sells tons of 2 way radio systems to truckers. The whip is about 3ft in length .

I recently lost the ball off the tip and am curious toward if it messes with the performance at all ..

I was concidering a tram 1181 antenna but I am concerned about performance loss .... Can I get better performance from a shorter 20" antenna ?

I'm looking to spend under $100 Canadian . Any suggestions on a good bang for the buck nmo antenna .

Thanks
 

mmckenna

I ♥ Ø
Joined
Jul 27, 2005
Messages
24,246
Location
I am a lineman for the county.
I recently lost the ball off the tip and am curious toward if it messes with the performance at all ..

No, won't impact performance. It's primarily for safety to keep the sharp end of the whip from doing damage. You can buy replacement ones if you search around. You'll need to know the diameter of the whip.


I was concidering a tram 1181 antenna but I am concerned about performance loss .... Can I get better performance from a shorter 20" antenna ?

Without knowing what your current antenna is, it would be difficult for us to compare performance between two unknown antennas.

A shorter antenna can work better if it is actually tuned for the frequencies in use. A longer antenna may have more gain if it is tuned for what you listen to.

There are some perfectly good multiband antennas that will come in under 20 inches that -MAY- work better than what you have.
But, skip the Tram/Browning/Hobby/Ham grade crap antennas. They are usually cheap Chinese crap antennas. You won't see them used in professional applications. If you want reliability and performance, as well as actual support from the manufacturer (replacement parts!) Go with the known name brands.

I'm looking to spend under $100 Canadian . Any suggestions on a good bang for the buck nmo antenna .

Larsen NMO-150/450/850 is a good VHF/UHF/800MHz antenna that will work well. Larsen is a well known company that makes quality antennas used in public safety applications. You ~should~ be able to find one for less than $100cdn.

I've been trying out a few EMWave antennas for about 2 years now, and am very happy with them. I have this multiband antenna on my work truck and I've been swapping it between the VHF radio and the 800MHz radio, and I've been impressed:
 
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