Upgrading My Antenna

A place to talk about everything Radio and Scanning

Upgrading My Antenna

Postby andy1t72 » Tue Dec 27, 2016 10:47 am

hi guys

got my first ever scanner at xmas and thinking of upgrading my antenna , someone reccommended the WATSON W-881 Super Gainer Scanner Antenna 25-1900MHz BNC Connector

my question is - is this a decent antenna for my 125xlt and will the connector fit on as the normal antenna that came with it
andy1t72
 
Posts: 14
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2016 7:57 am

Re: Upgrading My Antenna

Postby m0lsx » Tue Dec 27, 2016 11:40 am

What do you want the antenna for?
There is nothing at all wrong with the Watson antenna, but it will only improve things over the standard antenna for handheld use. Being longer it will not let you tuck the radio into your jacket pocket for discreet Close Call use, when you are out & about. And being another handheld antenna it will not let you hear new stations, just those already there but weak, better.
I use my handhelds in the car sitting in a drink cup/can holder with the antenna above the dash & like that I have to use the standard or a better standard size antenna, as the longer handheld antennas are just too long.
There are alternatives to just another handheld antenna. But it does depend on how you want to use the antenna.
So the Watson is a better handheld antenna, but that does not mean it is what you need. However at around £15 it's still a good buy. Nagoya are also worth considering, especially as they are slightly cheaper, if you shop around you will get a Nagoya for £15 (or less) including postage.
You need a BNC connector for the 125.
Buy a database from Kimmy JS19 via http://ukscanningdirectory.co.uk/
Or do Google search of this forum via https://www.google.com/cse/home?cx=partner-pub-6291336405621919:2662881632
73 De Alan (M0LSX.)
http://www.qrz.com/db/M0LSX"
User avatar
m0lsx
 
Posts: 4972
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2012 9:14 pm
Location: Norwich. TG21.

Re: Upgrading My Antenna

Postby andy1t72 » Tue Dec 27, 2016 12:32 pm

m0lsx wrote:What do you want the antenna for?
There is nothing at all wrong with the Watson antenna, but it will only improve things over the standard antenna for handheld use. Being longer it will not let you tuck the radio into your jacket pocket for discreet Close Call use, when you are out & about. And being another handheld antenna it will not let you hear new stations, just those already there but weak, better.
I use my handhelds in the car sitting in a drink cup/can holder with the antenna above the dash & like that I have to use the standard or a better standard size antenna, as the longer handheld antennas are just too long.
There are alternatives to just another handheld antenna. But it does depend on how you want to use the antenna.
So the Watson is a better handheld antenna, but that does not mean it is what you need. However at around £15 it's still a good buy. Nagoya are also worth considering, especially as they are slightly cheaper, if you shop around you will get a Nagoya for £15 (or less) including postage.
You need a BNC connector for the 125.


all im using the scanner for is airband as i live very close to heathrow /farnborough / fairford / raf odiham / raf benson / gatwick (if i can pick up that from home) , it will be mainly used in the house as im wheelchair bound and when i do go out its to heathrow , ive also programmed in a few local shopwatch and pubwatch frequencies , im also after taxis but cannot find them anywhere , signal is pretty pants downstairs in the house so thats why im thinking better antenna
andy1t72
 
Posts: 14
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2016 7:57 am

Re: Upgrading My Antenna

Postby m0lsx » Tue Dec 27, 2016 1:09 pm

An antenna optimised for the Civil airband will serve you better than a general coverage antenna.

http://www.nevadaradio.co.uk/avionics/scanmaster-pilot-bnc-

http://hamradiostore.co.uk/watson-w-901.html
Buy a database from Kimmy JS19 via http://ukscanningdirectory.co.uk/
Or do Google search of this forum via https://www.google.com/cse/home?cx=partner-pub-6291336405621919:2662881632
73 De Alan (M0LSX.)
http://www.qrz.com/db/M0LSX"
User avatar
m0lsx
 
Posts: 4972
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2012 9:14 pm
Location: Norwich. TG21.

Re: Upgrading My Antenna

Postby Nighthawk999 » Tue Dec 27, 2016 4:47 pm

andy1t72 wrote:hi guys

got my first ever scanner at xmas and thinking of upgrading my antenna , someone reccommended the WATSON W-881 Super Gainer Scanner Antenna 25-1900MHz BNC Connector

my question is - is this a decent antenna for my 125xlt and will the connector fit on as the normal antenna that came with it

Hi,personally I prefer the Watson 801(BNC connector) for both indoor and outdoor use,it's short enough to be used discreetly in an inside pocket when out and about,along with Walkman-type earphones.
The 881 is good for indoor use and picks up USAF F-15s etc out of Lakenheath in Suffolk when I'm here in Leicester.But at just over 15" it's too big to be discreet.
Something else you may want to try,when at home I use my 125 on mains power(with the supplied power lead),that way I can set the backlight to "On with Squelch"so it lights every time a transmission is received.Doing that on battery power very soon zaps them!
Also I've found that using the power lead to charge the batteries is fairly useless,so I use a normal plug-in charger and 2300Mah batteries.
Nighthawk999
 
Posts: 163
Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2015 11:45 am
Location: West Leicester near city centre

Re: Upgrading My Antenna

Postby Chris P » Tue Dec 27, 2016 10:03 pm

I have recently carried out a comparison of a few handheld antennas across a wide range of frequencies and the Nagoya 771 type ( even those that are obvious copies ) came out at the top of the list . I compared Watson gainer and super gainer with the Nagoya types and a couple of 901 lookalikes along with the standard rubber ducks supplied by Uniden and Alinco . All antennas were located at the same height and

however for the civil airband none were as good as a homebrew airband slim jim cut for 126Mhz which was even better than my diamond D777 . For UHF the bowtie takes some beating

the handhelds when used on the ground floor of my house were next to useless in comparison to when I used them by a first floor window .
Regards Chris aka G8FFF nipper or tazmin88
Chris P
 
Posts: 360
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 12:20 pm
Location: 6.5nM west of 06 threshold marham

Re: Upgrading My Antenna

Postby m0lsx » Tue Dec 27, 2016 11:26 pm

Standing at the top of Cromer Church tower many years ago. I gave a call on NB using my VX-7R & £30+ Diamond & was opening the repeater with ease. Someone also said I was getting into North Walsham nicely on the input frequency too. So we tried on my Puxing with my Negoya. Total cost about £30. The only difference on was that with the Puxing no CTCSS was audible.
Buy a database from Kimmy JS19 via http://ukscanningdirectory.co.uk/
Or do Google search of this forum via https://www.google.com/cse/home?cx=partner-pub-6291336405621919:2662881632
73 De Alan (M0LSX.)
http://www.qrz.com/db/M0LSX"
User avatar
m0lsx
 
Posts: 4972
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2012 9:14 pm
Location: Norwich. TG21.

Re: Upgrading My Antenna

Postby milly » Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:42 am

Chris P wrote:I have recently carried out a comparison of a few handheld antennas across a wide range of frequencies and the Nagoya 771 type ( even those that are obvious copies ) came out at the top of the list . I compared Watson gainer and super gainer with the Nagoya types and a couple of 901 lookalikes along with the standard rubber ducks supplied by Uniden and Alinco . All antennas were located at the same height and

however for the civil airband none were as good as a homebrew airband slim jim cut for 126Mhz which was even better than my diamond D777 . For UHF the bowtie takes some beating

the handhelds when used on the ground floor of my house were next to useless in comparison to when I used them by a first floor window .


But the Waters & Stanton efforts mention that they are 'optimised for airband' and have lovely writing saying 'gainer' and 'super gainer'...they must be good and worth paying extra for? I'd sooner use a metal coat hangar ;-)

There's the old chestnut about Diamond being 'better quality' too...really?

Back to the OP. There are two things that you could do downstairs to help (there is no miracle cure). Get more height or get more aerial. Height is difficult as putting your house on stilts will be expensive and introduce a whole host of other problems ;-)
An external aerial removes the portability you require.
Something like the Nagoya 771 is a fair compromise between size, portability and price. Another option would be a telescopic - a bit more awkward as you move around but has the advantage that you have rudimentary tuning for specific frequency ranges by adjusting the length.
The 'slim jim' is a good option though rather large - that said, mounted in a white tube and attached to your wheelchair.....? I know that sounds a bit odd but creativity and imagination are your friends. Spend time thinking about what you really want/need. If you know other scanner users nearby see if you can borrow any alternatives to try them out in your specific situation.
milly
 
Posts: 307
Joined: Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:59 am


Return to Radio and Scanning Chat

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests