Antenna mounted Amplifier Project
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I am trying to improve signal on a 800 mhz sytem that is around the 70 to 75 km range. Currently I receive this system at around 1 to 2 bars on my BCT-15 using a 800mhz Wilson beam. You can find 800mhz beams for some good prices on ebay right Here. Also be advised that the 1 to 2 bars is with the amp that I am mounting by the antenna, but I connected it down in the scanner shack tempararely until I put it up on the mast. Without this amp in the shack I barely get the control channel.
I was searching for an amplifier that was not alot of money but the performance to be good. I source out a company called Electroline. They make all sorts of drop amps and accessories. The amplifier is made by Electroline for Marathon Industries (Marda1100 Drop Amplifier) and will be 15 DB's of forward gain and a return path insertion loss of 0.5 DB's. I purchase mine from Ebay Here and here is a Picture of the amp I Purchased. If you notice in the picture I provided, there is a power inserter that I purchased separately from this Company. There is two ways of powering this amplifier, one is Local powering and the other is Remote powering (requires power inserter)
Here is some info on powering this amp. I am going to be trying the Remote Powering set-up and will eliminate one cable. Local powering you would be running two cables which would be RF output cable and another for power. It uses regular coax cable for power and connects to the adapter which has F female for you to connect. I will mount the power inserter in my shack under my desk where the coax cables come in. The coax I am using is about 75 feet long and is Times Microwave LMR400. Here is the amp mounted up on the Mast. This pic was taken before hooking up the LMR 400 cable that runs down the mast and into the shack and finally connect to the power inserter to power the amp.
Finally had some time to connect everything up and see if this was worth the work. Here is the suprise that I was looking forward too, 4 Solid bars and receiving the system nice and clear. This project will all depend on what terrain and intermod you have in the area you live at, but you don't know until you try to see if it works for you. Don't let anyone tell you not to try an amplifier if your signal is low and you want to receive the system better. I tried and look at the results!
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