I get bored and have to mess with stuff. I decided I wanted to see how good the Uniden BCD436HP close call feature works with a better antenna at a higher elevation against a standard analog radio.
On my first test of the BCD436HP I only went out to 100 ft and was using a telescopic antenna. You can read my first tests here.
I recently installed the Diamond Antenna V2000A Tri Band Base Antenna (6m/2m/70cm) on a 20ft pole at my house. This is what I connected to the BCD436HP.
The radios I used for this test was the standard Baofeng UV-5R in a common configuration. The radio that I was trying to capture was on high power with a high gain omnidirectional antenna. Most people that don’t know any better run this setup or something similar on their kit.
As you can see in the picture below I have the BCD436HP connected to one UV-5R with an APRS cable. That radio is on the MURS frequency. The third UV-5R is also on the MURS frequency. The test radio with the large antenna is on a UHF frequency.
I had to have with me two radios to run this test myself. The test radio on UHF and the other one on the MURS frequency. I turn on the BCD436HP and select the close call feature. I then key up on the MURS frequency and once the close call feature picks it up I select AVOID FREQUENCY on the scanner so its not picking that frequency.
I then headed outside. At 50 yards I keyed up the test radio thats on the UHF frequency. Within 1 second I was coming across the second radio on the MURS frequency. Well 50 yards wasn’t far enough. Out to 100 yards I went. Keyed up and in 1 second I was picked up again. 170 yards and…… was picked up in 2 seconds. 200 yards the radio inside the house wasn’t reaching. At this point I went back to the house and took a magnet mount antenna from my old truck and put it on the metal roof of the house and ran the coax into the house back to the radio connected to the scanner.
This time I went to 350 yards and within 2 seconds the close call feature picked me up. So now I’m interested in just how far this close call feature will pickup analog radios. Next was 500 yards.
At 500 yards it got me in 3 seconds. At this point I decided to push it and went out to 1 mile. At one mile line of sight back to my house it got me in less than 2 seconds. I then put the radio on low power and it still got me just as quick. I didn’t move any further back than 1 mile. Now as soon as I had a piece of terrain in between me and the antenna at the house it wouldn’t pick it up even on high power. As I drove back to the house I kept trying with the terrain in between me and the scanner antenna and even up to the 400 yard mark it wouldn’t pick me up as long as I had something in between me and the scanner antenna (hint hint)
This testing was basically done in optimal conditions. I have zero trees or buildings blocking the view of the antenna. I made sure I could see the antenna when I keyed up. I am HIGHLY impressed that it will pickup an analog signal from a mile on low power though. It still wouldn’t close call my DMR radio. I did this testing for all the guys who are running analog radios. You need to know what can get your signal and how fast. You need to know what techniques it takes to defeat this also.
All of this will be gone over in my TACCOMMS CLASS. If you are interested look over my schedule of if you want to host me contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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