Topic: RE: HF And VHF Receiver For DX / Aviation DX
Posted 2013-02-17 16:46:08 and read 9164 times.
I have owned the Grundig G6 for a while. I bought it as a standby am/fm shortwave receiver. It works fine for am/fm but reception on the aviation band is pretty much unusable. I haven't tried shortwave because I have other options.
The G6 is a good, compact, am/fm receiver but that's about it.
If you want to listen to aircraft and/or the tower this radio won't do it, at least with any reliability at all. So, what to get?
Two things are important. Depending on where you are, I am in lower Westchester County, NY with all kinds of airports around me, as a Private Pilot I use a dedicated handheld aviation radio, in my case a Vertex Standard Pilot III. It's about $270 depending on where you buy it, but I bought it for flight use. There are no doubt quality scanners that will receive aviation transmissions just as well. You may want to consider one of those. That said, I can sit here all day and listen to the aircraft talking to JFK, LGA, EWR, etc but cannot hear the tower, approach, departure etc.
I can't hear them because even though I am about 20 miles from LGA, the little rubber duck antenna on the handheld is too low. The only way to improve this is with an outdoor antenna up high. How high? I don't know but probably something like 30 feet or more even as close as I am.
VHF aviation communications, or any VHF is line of sight. So, you can't sit in your living room and hear the tower, approach, or departure transmissions, but you can hear the airplanes because they are up high.
Do what you want but without a high outdoor antenna, or perhaps one in your attic, you will only hear the airplanes. That said, they are fun to listen to.
Get yourself first a high antenna, (without it you will only hear the airplanes, depending on where you are), then borrow someone's scanner that covers the aviation band. See if that works for you. If so, then buy one and you have the scanner for other uses. If you are a pilot or will be one, go ahead and get a Vertex or Icom aviation handheld, connect to that antenna, and enjoy yourself.
All that said, it's not as much fun as receiving with your own gear, but a great option is simply going to liveatc.net. Listen to everything almost everywhere, on your computer.