GMRS Home Base Station Antenna Options

Hi all,

I am new to the forum, I’m looking forward to my first radio set up. And being part of the community, but I do need some help setting up my first base station. (I just received my GMRS license and call sign this week)

I am setting up a GMRS base station at home for family communications, for an emergency and bad cell service area. My setup will include either a Midland MTX115 (15 Watt) OR MTX400 (40 Watt), my truck will have the MTX275 (15 Watt), then two or three handhelds (GTX1000) for family members. The area I live at is semi-rural just looking for comms within 3-10 miles if possible from the house. I am not sure about GMRS repeaters in our area, but I will also do some research on that. Any suggestions on what kind of antenna and power supply for my home base station?

Thank you!
Call sign: WRDW479 (ZA-GMRS)

Update on my research.

Found fIve base antenna options, will any of these work for my home base? If so which would give me the most range?

Harvest BC200 450-470Mhz 6.5dBi 200W Tunable GMRS UHF Base Antenna

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GMRS Vertical Outdoor Base Antenna

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Midland MicroMobile MXTA11 6dB Gain Antenna

HYS Mobile Transceiver Antenna 17 Inch UHF(400~470 MHz) Fiberglass Antenna for Baofeng, Anytone Kenwood TYT Mobile Radios

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462 MHz Land Mobile (GMRS) J-Pole Antenna

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Welcome to the forum and to the world of GMRS!

Most any of the external/outdoor GMRS antennas listed should work fine for the base station. However, you do want to consider the type of feed line (cable) you will be using to connect the antenna to the radio, especially if the antenna will be located outdoors at any considerable distance from the location of the radio indoors. If you are going to run or drop a cable more than 100 feet away, you may want to consider a shielded, low-loss cable such as BR-400. The RG174 that Midland usually includes with its MXT115VP3 value pack is usually sufficient for short runs of about 20 feet or less.

Just a reminder to everyone, please do not post links to products from competitors’ web sites. To prevent any issues, please read the FAQ for our forum rules before posting. Thanks!

Height is might.

450ish MHz is predominantly Line of Sight and as a result, it is the primary discerning factor in range. Gain, really helps with penetration through foliage and into far-field structures. However, antennas with higher gain can also have a negative coverage impact in the near-field. For example, a 0 dBd gain antenna (sometimes referred to as Unity gain) can often perform better in a warehouse environment if the antenna is mounted on the roof of the warehouse compared to a 6 dBd gain antenna.

Also, location again can come into play with antenna selection. If your home is in a valley or on top of hill, the radiation pattern of a 0 dBd antenna can often serve you better than that of one with gain.

I second Rick’s comment about feedline length being of concern as well. For installs between 25’ and 150’ of coax, LMR-400 (.400" diameter, solid conductor with a foil and braided shield) is really the universal go to (though it is not recommended for repeater application).

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