Base coverage area for Talking House

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Base coverage area for Talking House

With just the "basic" antenna that will come with it, no modifications except for stretching the antenna out as far as it will go so that the calibration works on startup, and tuning to the frequency that I want, how far can the Talking House signal travel just as is?

Several factors come in to

Several factors come in to play resulting in different capabilities.. Naturally you would get better range with an outdoor install then you would with an indoor one, but it also depends on the ground conductivity of your area, as well as the amount of obstructions such as buildings and even trees, then there's interference from power line transformers, or whatever else..

But generally (and I've never had a Talking House.. yet).. I would venture a guess of maybe a quarter mile radius could be achieved without too much problem.. But that's only an assumption on my part.

That's my 2 cent armchair speculation.

Rich Powers Part15, Take 2..

There really is no way of

There really is no way of telling except trying it out.  Unfortunately.  The answer, as Rich Powers has suggested, is based on too many factors.

Just to give you an idea, though, I've owned several Talking Houses, and a Talking Sign, which is very similar.

Stringing up the wire antenna indoors gave me minimal range, much less than 1/4 mile.  The signal was good around my house, though, and perhaps to the end of the block (which was short).

I got creative, and mounted my Talking Sign on the ceiling (I owned a single story rancher at the time).  I ran the wire antenna outdoors through a small hole that I drilled, and up a PVC pipe that I mounted on the eave of the house.  I was able to achieve a mile range with that installation to a good car radio in one direction (the least built up area), and over 1/2 mile in other, more built up directions.

Obviously, some of the factors for range include the sensitivity of the radio, RF noise in your neighbourhood, ground conductivity, surrounding buildings and their construction materials, etc.

If you can mount your Talking House outside (in a weather proof box), and string the wire antenna up vertically (which is what I essentially did with my Talking Sign install), you'll get the best range.

Don't expect more than a mile or so range with any installation that is unambiguously legal, though.  You'll likely get more range with a ProCaster or Rangemaster, but those are premium, expensive transmitters, and you're probably better off experimenting with the Talking House before going with one of those options.

Another thing to consider is

Another thing to consider is which Talking House?.. They've been around for over 30 years, and for a substantial period of that time appear to have been mass produced.. there's no telling how many thousands of these units are floating around. Also, as is with any mass produced product, the quality from batch to batch are going to vary even amongst the same model.. but if your talking about the Talking House rebranded as the IAM, with it's improved audio and circutry, I suspect greater care and oversight is taken in quality control of each individual unit..

There's something else to note.. The Talking House is the only part 15 AM transmitter that managed to get certified in spite of its utilizing the electric ground.. which is odd, because it obviously causes it to exceed the 3 meter rule. Originally they were simply a real estate sales tool which was intended to reach just beyond the front yard of the home so potential buyers could tune in to hear the animities of that house. But by putting the Talking House on the third floor of a building and plugging it in is going to provide you one hell of a "ground lead" - which would technically be legal under it's Certification, while at the same time technically illegal under the 15.219 rule... So, in such a situation which one takes presidence?.. Ask Jerry Guale who received a NOUO inder such circumstance.

I'm a little puzzled about the Talking House.. I know they first hit the market in the early 1980s, but the certification is dated 1997 at which time the grant of certification was held by Broadcast Marketing LLC.. then in 2009 it was held by Radio Systems Design, Inc... and now, changed again only a few weeks ago to Information Station Specialist (ISS) - Who as far as I can tell the last two are at least closely related even though are from two different states.. But Certification Grants of part 15 are not transferrable!.. it even says this on the grant itself! - So I'm a bit confused on that as well.

Really, all things considered, regardless of what part 15 transmitter you use; If you are acheiving a mile radius, you're doing really well. If your acheiving a two mile radius, you're doing extreamly well, and probally pushing your luck, and perhaps bending a rule. 

Oh, one other thing: ISS, who now holds the certification of the Talking House and uses them in their InfOspot systems, (which mainly are intended for tourist information) - ISS quotes an aproximent 1/4 mile radius of range per transmitter.

Rich Powers Part15, Take 2..

Did some digging

It looks like what's being shipped to me is a TH II. My main goal is to not only use the TH at home, but to have it able to be used for live play-by-play of youth basketball games in the fall & winter and youth baseball/softball games next spring. Could this unit have enough coverage to blanket stands of a little league field from the press box or a whole middle/high school basketball gym from the scorer's table?

The answer is ... probably. 

The answer is ... probably.  But again, you'll need to try it out.  Take a couple of typical portable radios and test it.  I would think you should be OK, as your objectives aren't too challenging.  You might even consider a Part 15 certified FM transmitter, as they typically have a range of 200 feet, radios are much more commonplace (a lot of smartphones even have FM radios built in) and your antenna/grounding requirements are much less than with AM.

If the little league team is

I suspect it should do the job, but Artisian makes a good point about FM. Another thought, If the little league team is school based group you could probally utilize 15.221 (campus broadcasting).. That way you could use your Talking House with longer antenna/ground to better cover the feild and stands and still be legal.  

Rich Powers Part15, Take 2..

I'd like to do FM, but...

The FM dial in my area, even the neighboring markets is too saturated with full power, low power or translators. even if there were an open frequency, it would get killed by a licensed broadcaster the next frequency over. Even though AM doesn't have the best sound quality, there is an open frequency or two on the dial where I could broadcast on the same frequency both day and night and not get killed at night. 

AM actually has exceptional

AM actually has exceptional sound quality, at least it does on the Rangemaster and SStran, and I presume the Procaster as well  (providing there isn't nearby interference stomping on it).

As for broadcasting both day and night.. well, after dark you can preety much forget it except for in your immeadiate area.

Rich Powers Part15, Take 2..

Rich makes a good point about

Rich makes a good point about campus broadcasting.  You should probably look into that - as long as your field strength is below a certain value at the school property boundaries, you can do whatever you want inside those boundaries (that rule applies to AM only).

The leagues I work with are independent contractors

The softball league is a non-profit organization, has been for years. The only school affiliation is that the girls that play in the league go to various elementary and middle schools (if they didn't make the middle school teams) in my hometown.

The basketball league is made up of elementary school boys teams and girls teams playing at the middle schools in my hometown and (for championship games) my hometown's high school that they would eventually wind up playing at if they're good enough.

Now if any of the elementary, middle, or high schools in my hometown wanted to start a low power station themselves, I can give them the advice you gave me, but they're on their own on that front.

I'm just basically doing live sports remotes from where games will be played and since it can be done from what's already been said, then I just have to get everything configured properly.

Here's where we stand...

I'm estimating my coverage area to be 1/8 of a mile to 1/4 of a mile, with the base antenna attached, stock power adapter, and a laptop with my automation via Winamp connected to the TH II with a 1/8 to RCA jack. Is that below average, just average or above average with just the bare bones?

Is that the range you're

Is that the range you're getting with the transmitter in the pressbox? or at home? It would probally make a difference.. The pressbox I assume is elevated and has more open area of the playing feild around it, and probally fewer powerlines strung in the area then say a home in a subdivision would have.

Also as previously mentioned the radio in on car may be able to receive it farther away then another car radio will.. in other words, as previously mentioned; the quality of the receiving radio plays just as much a factor.

Anyway, in trying to answer the question you asked.. Earlier in this thread I mentioned that ISS uses the Talking House for their InfOspot system and quotes an average of a 1/4 range -- I was mistaken, they actually quote 1/2 range with an install at 20ft of height, however, some of their case studies of particular locations mounted at a 10ft height are getting about 1/4 mile.

Again, there is no simple answer for your question because results vary from location to location, but you might want to reread Artisian's reply again above in post #3, as he actually has had first hand experience with a few Talking House installs. The best results will also be if you have the wire antenna outdoors (you don't mention)

Other than that, it sounds like you've already succeeded at your objective of covering the stands, feild, and parking lot with no problem. Best of luck, and let us know how it goes.

Rich Powers Part15, Take 2..

Only been home (studio) testing so far

Just a set of 5 steps that lead up to the front door of the house...that and the THII about 4 feet of the ground.

iAM Talking House with Indoor Antenna

I have a TH with the factory audio mods. The antenna is drapped over the top of the curtain rod in essentially an inverted L, not the best arrangement.  The range with this poor setup is about 1,000 feet in any direction to a car radio. 

Druid Hills Radio AM-1710- Dade City, FL. Unlicensed operation authorized by the Part 15 Department of the FCC and our Resident Hobby Agent.  

TH5 Talking house

From my experance doing a little crude testing with mine, I got a solid 1/4 mile all the way around, and a very weak 1/2 mile in one direction. I have a small hill in the other direction, that limits the range to only 1/4 mile ore so. Mine was setup on the second floor bedroom, with the th5 on the wood floor, and the antanna stretch to the top of a door frame.

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