How To Improve Pro 404 Reception?

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sambo613

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I have the Pro 404 Scanner and having trouble recieving frequencys from 7 miles away and I even have an upgraded antenna, it is the Austin Condor All-Band Portable BNC Antenna. Also I have my scanner inside my house, but it is not by a window.
 

ka3jjz

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Move the scanner around - in a room there can be dead spots as well as places where signals improve. Height is also a good thing - you might find better reception on the top of a bookcase, for example.

It's a little hard to be specific since the post lacks any (what freqs are you listening to? Is the house constructed with aluminum siding? Where are you (county/state is fine)? Are on a ground floor, basement, what?) but the other way to improve the reception is to buy a simple mag mount antenna and put it on something ferrous - move it around until you get a spot that seems to work best. Putting it outside would be the best solution.

A little radio like that would likely be really overloaded if you put a discone or ScanTenna on it...HTH...Mike
 
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sambo613

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I live in Lake County, IL and listen to frequencys 154.430,154.400 are just some of them. Im on the middle level of my house which is in my office.Also are you saying that the antenna is overload or what? Thanks!
 

ka3jjz

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Every home has areas where signals are getting attenuated and reflected all over the place. It's almost impossible to predict where these areas might be. That's why you simply have to try different areas - and that problem gets magnified inside a building. In an office, you have a LOT of equipment which is possibly flooding the scanner with so much noise and junk it can't hear much of anything - in this case, yes, it's a hard case of overloading. Again, moving the scanner in different areas will likely help, but even better would be a small mag mount outside away from all that office equipment and clear of all those obstructions which aren't helping your situation one bit. Mike
 

ka3jjz

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Apart from those 2 154 mhz freqs, what are you trying to hear? The more specific the better...Mike
 

nanZor

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One of the problems with the 404 is that it is an old-school dual-conversion receiver with a 10.7 mhz IF. In addition to normal overload conditions, you are also subject to "image" or "phantom" signals 21.4 mhz away from the real frequency. I knew that going in, and while happy with the audio output, the dual-conversion receiver brought me straight back to the 1980's hearing things 21.4 mhz away from the real thing.

So be sure that you have programmed in the correct published frequencies, and have not programmed in an "image" that you may have caught while searching. EX: if you listen to something in the 460 range, and hear amateur radio operators which are really down in the 440 range, you are hearing the image. Depending on the band, the images may be coming from 21.4 mhz either up or down the band, so doublecheck for the real frequency.

I'd be tempted to upgrade to at least a triple-conversion scanner if you are interested in better antennas - especially outdoors.
 
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ke5fnb

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Trouble with Pro 404

Almost anywhere in my house I have trouble receiving my local railroad frequency, 160.29 MHz. Sometimes iI receive it in my house, but with LOTS of white noise. When I am near my desktop, I cannot receive it at all. What gets me is that I receive this frequency on my Pro 106 almost clearly ANYWHERE in my house (even near the computer.) I bought the Pro 404 specifically for railroad listening. I did that because I don't have to take my Pro 106 with me outside and it get beat up or stolen. Also, the Pro 106 was bought for police, fire, ambulance, government, although I do have railroad frequencies in there. The Pro 404 only gets spotty reception, even out in the field and with high preformance antennas. When I am in or near New Orleans, I get beautiful reception on it and if a train is passing through my town. I see that some of yall mentioned the +/- 21.4 MHz image frequency and now I realize that I am stuck with it. Oh well, it is still good for business band listening while out shopping.
 

nanZor

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One option might be to go the other direction in regards to the antenna - especially since the 404 doesn't have an attenuator.

Even though the 404 doesn't have 800mhz coverage, the RS 800 mhz duck might provide enough attenuation to calm things down a bit, and still let you hear your services if they are strong enough.
 
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