Scanner Signal meter

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wortz

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Hi ppl,
Does anyone knows if a signal meter exists which can be connected so that one can see the strenght of the radio signal???? something like that of the satellite dishes!!!
 

LEH

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Several scanners on the market already have them. Most of the new ones do. Though the one on the PSR-500 seems to be backwards. Shows five bars during scan and then drops down when a signal is received.
 

ridgescan

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I just talked to Ham Radio Outlet and they said no for scanners, but they do sell a couple dual meters (1 side recieve-1 side transmit) but he doubted they would be effective on a scanner:(
 

fineshot1

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I installed one in my RS Pro2042. It is one of those 10 segment LED electronic signal strength meters and works great. A lot would depend on the model scanner you have and your electronics skills.
 

kb2vxa

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Oh what did we do before someone got the bright idea of putting a meter in a receiver? OH MY, WHAT DID WE DO??? We were born with EARS and had the S1 to S9 scale in our heads before someone drew it on a meter face, that's what we did!

BAH!

Hallicrafters was the only company to produce a receiver with a calibrated S meter, S9=50uV at the antenna input terminals. All others are simply eye candy and meaningless, the only useful function if you can call it that is seeing the relative strength of one signal compared to another which your ears tell you without looking at a meter.

BAH!

FYI with FM a signal report is properly given in % quieting of the white noise generated by the receiver's front end, there is little to no noise on VHF and none whatsoever on UHF signals. (I won't even get into how some idiots give signal reports on repeaters, .... ..)

MEETURS? We don' nee' no steenking MEETURS!

I'm just a crusty old Amateur I am I am said Sam munching his green eggs and ham.

BAH!
 

af5rn

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I agree that they are of limited usefulness for day to day scanning. That's why the manufacturers do not make this a priority, and why the best we get is a little 5-bar mini-meter on even the best scanners. However, there are certainly uses for them. Your ears will tell you if a signal is good or not. But your ears will not tell you the difference between good, better, and best, nor will they give you any way to quantify that. Do you need that ability everyday? Probably not. Most scannists probably never need it at all. But serious scannists will occasionally like to experiment with different antennas, different antenna mounts, different antenna locations, different coaxes, different preamps, and different attenuators. The only way to quantify those differences will be with some type of signal strength meter. Not all of us have access to a ten-thousand dollar service monitor, you know. Regardless of how technically accurate you feel an S-meter is, the fact is that it does give us an objective way to measure performance, and some of us need that.
 

ridgescan

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If yous dont got one, builds one!

http://good-times.webshots.com/photo/2555501040021435046JoBBFW

Hooked up to my Pro-2006

Only one like it, built from scratch!

Manny
That's a neat one buddy:) I have the little 6 bar signal indicater too-but it would be cool to have a nicer more accurate one. I have a 1954 Hallicrafters SX-88 in my closet and it's down until I get it recapped and retubed. Warren, or someone who knows-can I use the S-meter from that on my scanner? If so, where would I connect it?
 

N1SQB

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Thanks !

Almost any analog signal meter will work. I ordered mine from Icom directly. I think they were meant for the IC-756 HF radio. Anyway, there are very limited radio scanners that these meters will work on. They are mainly the older radio shack pro-2004,5,6,2042 and a few others. Get a copy of a book called " The scannner modification Handbook" by Bill Cheek. (deceased). I have had so much fun doing mods to my pro-2006, its not even funny. Forget the cell mods, the signal meter,center tune meter, and carrier-on indicator mods are so much fun to do and are actualy useful. The pro-2006, though its out of date for todays' needs, still packs a wallop in the civil and milair areas. It also works great when I am doing searches too. The meters tell me the strength and wether I am off by +/- 5 KHZ. Not a perfect science but it adds to the scanning fun.

Manny
 

rcvmo

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Romulus, Mi.
A lot would depend on the model scanner you have and your electronics skills.

Sure does.
There are many circuits inside ANY radio that would allow you to tap off for a signal meter.

My Maxtracs, Spectras ( pre-RSSI), Radius Mobiles, TV and VCR all have an external port I can connect a Volt meter to.

rcvmo
 

kb2vxa

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"Your ears will tell you if a signal is good or not. But your ears will not tell you the difference between good, better, and best, nor will they give you any way to quantify that."

Well lets not get too technical here, the well trained ear is as good as any common test instrument. On the other hand S meters not being calibrated vary widely, I've seen some that give usable readings and some not worth a poop. It's all hit or miss but as they say it's good enough for government work and even with my background it took a while to learn how to use a Cushman Station Monitor. Then another neat bit of equipment is an antenna analyzer but I digress and we're not building a communications center here either.

"Regardless of how technically accurate you feel an S-meter is, the fact is that it does give us an objective way to measure performance, and some of us need that."

I can't argue with that. (BAH!)

"396 owners can get a lot more than 5 bars:"

It all depends on how many bars on the meter if it has any bars at all. Some counties are dry so go where there are bars, the more the merrier. <hic> Hey, if you have enough bars you won't give a crap if you can't find the meter or there are two of them! <hic>

One last question Manny, what is this stuff you built your meter from? They're usually built from parts...

BAH! (;->)
 
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