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Author Topic: United Airlines channel 9 question  (Read 12868 times)
Chananya Freedman
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« on: February 10, 2009, 05:04:48 PM »

Hi there.
   This might be somewhat confusing but, I'll do my best... 

   I've really astute hearing, so, this is my theory.  I think that it depends on the type of plane & radio type that allows you to listen to ATC on channel 9.  For example, if the plane is a boeing 737, I can probably tell by the sound of the radio that they don't have the ability to listen to channel 9.  On the other hand, if on an airbus A319 or a boeing 757,  I can tell by the sound of the radio that they have the capability but I can't tell if it is being used.  Is my theory correct?  Sorry for any confusion.  I'm just VERY curious.


Chananya
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Chananya Freedman
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tyketto
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« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2009, 09:47:20 PM »

Hi there.
   This might be somewhat confusing but, I'll do my best... 

   I've really astute hearing, so, this is my theory.  I think that it depends on the type of plane & radio type that allows you to listen to ATC on channel 9.  For example, if the plane is a boeing 737, I can probably tell by the sound of the radio that they don't have the ability to listen to channel 9.  On the other hand, if on an airbus A319 or a boeing 757,  I can tell by the sound of the radio that they have the capability but I can't tell if it is being used.  Is my theory correct?  Sorry for any confusion.  I'm just VERY curious.


Chananya

Chananya,

Actually, it won't matter what type of aircraft you're on, but if you're on a mainline United aircraft, it is capable of having Ch. 9. Only the regional carriers won't have it. I've had the pleasure of listening to Ch. 9 on the following:

B737-300
B737-400
B757-200
A319-132
A320-232
B747-400

Pretty much every aircraft in their mainline fleet will have it. If you fly on something like Skywest, Great Lakes, Air Wisconsin, or any other regional carrier operating as United Express, you won't.

BL.
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jsapyta
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« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2009, 10:26:20 PM »

And don't forget its up to the Captain to turn channel 9. Sometimes they forget.

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N7XLQ
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« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2009, 10:59:40 PM »

any other airlines with "channel 9" type of channel ?
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sincerely, Rae
PHL Approach
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« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2009, 11:46:46 PM »

any other airlines with "channel 9" type of channel ?

Certain types do have the ability if the airline choose to order them with the option. US B762s have an "OBS Audio" switch on the bottom right of the overhead below the bleeds. It transmits the COMMs to Channel 11.

I know some not sure if all AA B752s have the same switch in the same spot but the company put an INOP sticker on it. Im sure it works they just don't want Crew's to turn it on.
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Аэрофлот Jr.
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« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2009, 07:10:16 AM »

Thanks 'PHL Approach' 
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sincerely, Rae
Steelrman
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« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2009, 03:41:09 PM »

Please forgive the newbie question, but what is Channel 9?  I'm thinking it is a feature where you, as a passenger, can listed to ATC on your plane?
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KSYR-pjr
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« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2009, 04:18:32 PM »

Please forgive the newbie question, but what is Channel 9?  I'm thinking it is a feature where you, as a passenger, can listed to ATC on your plane?

Yep, United has an inflight audio system that is piped to each seat.  Not sure about these days, but in years past a passenger had to rent a headset to plug into the armrest to receive the audio.   There are also stores across the Internet that sell airline headset adapters, which turns any normal microjack headset into one that will work onboard, in essence making this service free.

Once you plug in, you have several different channels of music and talk to which to listen, including channel 9 that offers ATC comms. 

Back in the mid-90s I was flying United a lot and would listen to this often, for the music they offered was on a loop that repeated at least twice per cross country (US) flight.  Of course, with the advent of MP3 players I am surprised United still offers this service.
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MathFox
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« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2009, 05:03:24 PM »

The system is still basically the same: headset plugs depend on the type of the plane (and class travelled), sometimes ordinary walkman earplugs fit, in other planes you want an adaptor cable.
The music still loops... six or seven times on transatlantic flights.
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Аэрофлот Jr.
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« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2009, 06:21:31 PM »


The music still loops... six or seven times on transatlantic flights.

and movies also. each movie loops at least 3 times when i fly transpacific.
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sincerely, Rae
phil-s
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« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2009, 11:45:43 PM »

I flew United almost exclusively from late 80's through maybe 2000, specifically because of channel 9. Many times when it was turned off I just asked if they'd be willing to turn it on. Maybe twice I got turned down. Several times on flights to Latin America the cockpit crew responded with "Sure, just didn't think anybody would be interested". (My Spanish is more than up to ATC.)  A couple of times having channel 9 was a little awkward for the cabin crew as several of us pax (especially in the front cabin) knew more about what was going on than they did, but it always ended with smiles on everybody's faces. Frankly, I am mystified as to why United has done this given that the other carriers absolutely refuse.  That said somebody did pipe ATC onto our headsets once or twice when I was a kid in the 50s. I was just fascinated. I only flew LA to NY once back then (1952) then between San Juan and either NY or MIA often, starting about 1956. So it must have been one of those flights. Fond but hazy memory.     
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SkyViking
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« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2009, 10:36:13 PM »

Also back in the 80s AA had channel 11 only on their DC10s, which had the cockpit ATC feed.  In fact on AA's 10s, they also had a camera in the cockpit that would be turned on during takeoff and landing.  I flew several 10s between YYZ and LGA in the early 80s and watching the takeoff and landing on the screen and hearing the pilots and ATC was the highlight of the trips!  As far as UA is concerned, last month I flew to ORD from YYZ and just prior to push back the Captain came on the PA for a greeting and said, "those of you interested in knowing what's going on in the cockpit are welcome to tune to channel 9 and keep up to date with the progress of our flight..."  WOW, and on my return the flight attendant made a similar remark.  I made it a point on both flights to thank the crew for keeping "9" on.  I had a choice of flying AC with a slightly cheaper fare and better time, but channel 9 always gets me to fly UA.
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Jefh23
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« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2009, 03:06:28 PM »

Do you happen to know what scanner Freq I would be able to listen to this on from the ground, I am in Sussex NJ?  Sorry for the newbie question!
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RIVERSMVP09
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« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2009, 01:45:13 AM »

whatever frequency your local tower uses.
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mkop
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« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2009, 02:29:01 AM »

See http://www.airnav.com/airport/KFWN

The airport in Sussex does not have a control tower. Instead, pilots communicate amongst themselves on a frequency called CTAF, on 122.7.

From where you are, you can probably pick Newark Tower on 118.3, or maybe Morristown Tower on 118.1. If you know what other airports are in your area you can for them at http://www.airnav.com/airports/. The tower frequency will be listed on that page.

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