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Air Traffic Monitoring => Feed Setup Pictures => Topic started by: djbeigel1 on January 31, 2011, 07:23:48 PM

Title: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: djbeigel1 on January 31, 2011, 07:23:48 PM
Price not a issue, What is the best scanner you can get. I want to start a feed for KFAT and KFCH. I am about 5 miles away from KFAT and about 7.5 from KFCH. What is the overall price for a complete setup to start this up? Is there anyway (since KFAT is a decently slow airport) that i can have Approach, Tower, Ground, And Departure on the same feed? Let me know your ideas, and links always help!
Title: Re: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: K5PAT on January 31, 2011, 08:32:03 PM
   Bearcat 350 seems to be a popular model and works well. The Radio Shack scanners also work well. (

 It is better to use a mobile/base model than the handheld units.
      You can receive Tower, Approach, Departure, and Ground by entering the frequencies and scanning those channels in your scanner. If you prefer, you can put tower on priority scan and it will override the other channels when the tower talks.
     There are many antenna choices, but the most popular are the J-Pole and Ground Plane antennas. ( (

Use the largest coax cable you can afford and put up the antenna as high as possible (at least 30') to assure reception of planes on the ground.  Sometimes a preamp will help with weak signals. (

I'm sure Dave can give you more helpful hints if you email him using the form on this website.
Title: Re: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: dave on February 01, 2011, 06:20:42 AM
Pat summed it up well.  I would just emphasize that the most important piece of the equation is the antenna and placement of the antenna.  Most of the receivers out there are close enough in performance that the receiver is not a real factor.
Title: Re: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: captkel on February 09, 2011, 10:20:08 AM
My humble opinion is the BC350 works just fine if your close to what you want to feed.
The BC15X is a better radio reception wise. It has a lot more bells and whistles that you would not need for a feed. It's so true, the antenna and coax are the two bigest factors. :-D

Title: Re: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: K5PAT on March 30, 2011, 09:31:56 PM
    See previous comments above.  At 12 miles you will have trouble receiving ground stations and planes on the ground.  Get your antenna as high as possible and use a good antenna, possibly a yagi if you can buy or build one. A tower top preamp will also help. 8-)
Title: Re: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: dave on April 19, 2011, 08:24:17 PM
I would like to setup a feed for a currently unserved airport KOKC. I live about 12 miles away and of course being Oklahoma there is no terrain between me and the airport. I'm comfortable working with PCs but I'm wondering what would be a good scanner. Would I likely need an external antenna could I use a handheld that would output the sound to the PC? I'm open to suggestions and if possible would like to try to keep things in the cheap (under $150) range.

Radio Shack Pro-136:    $50 (in store)
Arrow Antenna GP126:  $36 + ~$12 shipping $50
Coax cable: depends on how much you need

Should be easy to do it for under $150 especially if you can scrounge some coax cable.  If you have sold old RG-6 CATV coax cable around, that works fine.  But you'll spend around $10 in RF adapters to adapt to UHF at the antenna and BNC at the scanner end.
Title: Re: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: djbeigel1 on August 10, 2012, 03:31:24 AM
I know this is a old post and im finally getting around to getting my feed setup. I'm thinking about ordering the 15x and a jpole. Still a good setup?
Title: Re: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: dave on August 10, 2012, 06:56:28 AM
Still a good setup, but which scanner you buy depends on what else you might use it to monitor in the future.

For antennas you might also consider a GP126 ground-plane antenna from Arrow Antennas.
Title: Re: What Scanner and Price help!
Post by: bbrasmussen on August 27, 2012, 12:58:26 AM
I would add that a filter might help your setup as well. I have a BCT 15 and it's pretty much deaf as a post on the VHF air band, and I am only 10 or so miles from a major airport (KSLC) with rooftop antennas.  The scanner works great for 800 MHz trunking, but the air band left something to be desired until I added a filter.  Living so close to the city means I also have to deal with strong broadcast FM signals.  The filter attenuates those and improves the scanner's sensitivity.  With it, the BCT 15 is a great air band scanner.
Here's the posts that got me looking at the HPN-30118.  Thanks to Squawk 7700 for the comparison:

It's not as fun to spend your money on things like filters, coax and antennas instead of cool things like radios with all the bells and whistles. But as others have said, those things are the things that make the biggest difference in reception.