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Hardware

Required

    • This particular model is $20 off Amazon and comes with a telescoping antenna.
    • Covers 24 MHz – 1700 MHz
  • Laptop

Optional

  • Replacement antenna

Replacing the Antenna

You can easily get much better signal reception on your USB dongle by replacing the stock antenna with a better antenna, or one better matched to the frequency range you are tuning to. Many of the USB dongles use a PAL or MCX connectors. You can purchase adapters that conver to BNC or SMA adapters for less than $4 on eBay. Once you have an adapter, you can easily connect another antenna. You can purchase telescopic CB or scanner radio antennas with BNC connectors for under $10 online. If you do by an antenna, wideband antennas like TV antennas or discone antennas work well (contrast this with most ham radio antennas which are typically tuned to a narrow range of frequencies).

Making your own antenna is fairly easy, too. See the projects page for instructions on making some antennas.

Local Radio Frequencies

You can also check the giant list of frequencies.

Frequency Mode Station
91.1 MHz WFM WEGL
144.390 MHz NFM APRS Calling Frequency
147.060 MHz NFM W4LEE Repeater
147.240 MHz NFM K4RY 2m Repeater
15x.xxx MHz NFM Auburn Fire Dispatch
155.610 MHz NFM Auburn Police Dispatch
162.525 MHz NFM NOAA Weather Radio Station WWF54
444.800 MHz NFM K4RY 70cm Repeater

Running on Windows with SDR Sharp

  • Follow this setup guide for Windows to setup SDR#.
  • The frequency shown in SDR# may be off from the actual frequency the dongle is tuned to. In my experience, it's typically 0.01 MHz or 10 kHz high.
  • WEGL will saturate your receiver if you are on campus, especially if you're tuning around 91.1 MHz. You can actually pick up WEGL without the antenna connected at all! That's what happens when you're within a mile of a 3 kW transmitter.

Running on Linux with GNURadio

usbsdr.1415286702.txt.gz · Last modified: 2014/11/06 09:11 by cwh0009