What use is there for radio in the days of pocket-sized cellphones, high-speed internet, and far-reaching Wi-Fi?
You may think that we’ve outgrown the need for such archaic forms of technology as antennas, receivers, transceivers, and antennas. You can do all that on your smartphone! But smart technology is fickle, Wi-Fi fails, and communication is more vital than ever.
Aside from building up your terrestrial radio in case of emergency communications, scanner antennas also make thousands of frequencies available. They expand your access to enjoyable, entertaining, and educational broadcasting—and all of it completely free.
But not all scanner antennas work the same way. Some scanner antennas are portable, and you can carry them around in the palm of your hand. Others are great big lugs of machines. Some scanner antennas work for broadcasting from your home, where others need to be mounted outside.
Learning about the diversity of options when it comes to scanner antennas helps you narrow down your needs. Without further ado, here are the top qualities to keep in mind when shopping for a scanner antenna:
The way your scanner antenna connects to your receiver determines your listening capability.
Check out the spring oscillator within these antennas, as that’ll be your best indicator of what kind of reception you’ll get—the stronger the signal, the better the audio quality.
An endless selection of antennas, scanners, and accessories (CB, wire, magnetic loop, etc.) awaits you at shops like Moonraker UK. You could drive yourself crazy with the number of options available. Narrow your search first by determining your listening capability preference.
Scanner antennas range in frequency between 20 MHz to up to 1000+. Whether you want to connect to a two-way radio, an FM radio transmitter, or a CB radio will change what MHz range your scanner antenna has.
Indoor vs. Outdoor
These days, the indoor/outdoor divide is not as vast. Most scanner antennas have cross-mounting capabilities, which means you can just as easily mount one outdoors as you could plop it in your spare room.
And because of technological advancement, you won’t get a reduced signal if you decide to set the antenna up indoors.
Some use their antennas on the road, scanning and receiving while in a moving car. Some scanner antennas come in as light as 2 ounces, but make sure that’s not a component of a more extensive setup.
If you are looking to attach things like radials, make sure your antenna setup comes with the necessary nuts and bolts included. Each brand has its size specifications, and you’ll drive yourself crazy trying to hunt down all that specialized paraphernalia on your own.
Know Before You Buy
Trust your instincts when shopping for a scanner antenna, but inform yourself before you buy. Read up on the configuration and functionality of scanner antennas and things like transceivers and dipole and halo loop antennas.
When you know why you need something, you know what to get. Shop wisely, and happy broadcasting.