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| | |-+  Have you used the External USB Sound adapters for Live ATC
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Author Topic: Have you used the External USB Sound adapters for Live ATC  (Read 1264 times)
w7psk
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« on: February 16, 2012, 12:08:06 PM »

Have A radio shack scanner and a Grundig G6 Aviator I would like to set up with a used laptop
I have laying around doing nothing that I would like to make into a set for Ground/Tower
for KPAE where I work. Paine Field is the Home to Boeing Large Aircraft MFG.  With only
1 sound input for the laptop  I was wondering if anyone has used an external sound
adapter (about 20 bucks) for a second rx sound input.

I Live about 3 miles from the airport and since I'm a Ham Radio op I would maybe put an
External antenna out to compensate for the Hill between me and the Airport.
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dave
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« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2012, 12:16:42 PM »

We use them extensively. Most of them work great.
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w7psk
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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2012, 12:05:10 PM »

Is there a preferred model number here?

Anyone taken a poll or asked before?
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dave
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« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2012, 11:31:05 AM »

No need for a poll.  smiley

I have tested many of them.  The two best ones in audio quality measurements:

1) Behringer UCA202 Audio Interface
http://www.amazon.com/Behringer-UCA202-Audio-Interface/dp/B000KW2YEI/ref=sr_1_sc_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1329582238&sr=8-3-spell

2) Griffin iMic
http://www.amazon.com/Griffin-Technology-iMic-Audio-Device/dp/B000BVV2IC/ref=pd_cp_e_0

That's not to say that others won't work well.  I bought a large supply of the cheap $1 USB audio dongles from overseas and used them here and there.  They seemed pretty susceptible to premature failure.  So your mileage may vary with those.  You get what you pay for.  Also, they are better suited to mic level input rather than line level input.  But they work in a pinch or on a budget...you have to control the audio level coming from the scanner very carefully or use an attenuating audio cable.

The main thing always is to pay very close attention to audio levels.  The general goal is to keep the gain in the software mixer (in Windows or whatever OS you are running) as low as possible and use a volume setting coming from the scanner.  This keeps hum to a minimum (unless you have a bad ground loop issue or power supply hum) - but either way the low input gain helps keep that noise to a very low level, under normal circumstances.

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