Rangecast FAQ
[FAQ-1200] Applying signal survey results



Signal surveys provide a way to determine reception patterns in a region (which receive sites are good for which radio broadcast signals, and for trunked systems, which towers carry which talkgroups.) This is an overview of the steps for applying survey results to improve Rangecast performance.


Review of the Band Target column:

If you want no content automatically assigned, enter X

If the site will be used in Zero Squelch mode, enter Z

If you want to restrict automatically assigned content to a certain distance in miles, enter M# (e.g. M5 for 5 mile limit)

If you want to shrink or expand the capture circle, use the Ratio feature (R#)

If you have multiple receivers at a single location, you may enter C to capture conventional channels on a specific receiver, or a band range (e.g. 700-999) to indicate a preference that frequencies in that range to that receiver

If your scanner has the DMR firmware upgrade, enter DMR

If your receiver is a 15X, enter 15X (will prevent automatic assignment of certain kinds of channels)

Multiple options can be entered with a comma separation


1. Ensure all feed site numbers with scanners are listed in the programmer, with geographic coordinates. (The coordinates are necessary so the programmer can select appropriate conventional channels and trunking system towers to test from these scanners.) In addition, it is desirable to fill the Band Target column (if appropriate) with an initial guess at a good setting for the site.

2. Start a signal survey from the status page - Advanced tab. In most circumstances, it is recommended to start a control channel survey (CC link) and a broadcast channel / talkgroup survey in Exclusive mode (Exclusive link).

3. Wait for at least a few hours, then apply the survey, as described in following steps.

4. Review the talkgroup distribution table to determine which towers you will want to receive.

5. Choose which receive sites seem best suited for each of these towers. Note whether you think zero squelch may be required at any of these sites.

6. Review the conventional channel survey to determine adjustments (if needed) to the Band Target column. (This is to save effort later at manual adjustment of individual channels.)

7. At the programmer entry screen, make indicated adjustments to the Band Target column (based on your results from the prior two steps) and then enter the programmer.

8. In the Trunking tab, mark the towers you have chosen in the first section, then ensure that the preferred receive site is selected for each tower in the section section.

9. Save the programming.

10. Refresh the survey results page. The highlighting indicating what's selected for reception will shift in accordance with your just-saved programming changes.

11. Iteratively improve the desired programming as well as possible without the use of manual overrides:

a) Review the talkgroup distribution table. If you see that a tower has been assigned more content that should be elsewhere, than it has content that should be on that specific tower, then in the Trunking tab, remove that tower from the marked options in the first section. (This will shift all talkgroups assigned to that tower elsewhere; you will later need to manually assign the desired talkgroups to that tower.) Repeat steps 9 through 11 until you have approximated the desired talkgroup distribution as well as possible without the use manual overrides.

b) Review the conventional survey and adjusting the Band Target as necessary, then save.

Then save and review, and repeat as needed. (These two kinds of adjustments can be made at once, we each, as you iteratively improve performance.)

12. In the Hub Overrides mode in the programmer, manually move talkgroups to towers, or conventional channels to receive sites, as needed to complete the correct assignments. (Also, in the Trunking tab, ensure towers will be received from the correct receive sites.)

Rangecast FAQ - ID 1200 - last updated 07 June 2018     Images shown - [block]