Low power broadcasters who use the AM band can really improve range and audio quality by installing an effective Radio Frequency (RF) ground system.
A good RF ground system depends, in part, on a natural phenomenon called "ground conductivity." This refers to the electrical properties of minerals in the local soil. Read more at the FCC web site page titled "Map of Effective Ground Conductivity in the USA"
So how does a broadcaster construct an effective ground? Two transmitter manufacturers have provided some tips here:
Hamilton Rangemaster Grounding Methods and in the PDF file of Ground Hints. Also some nice info from Information Station Specialists; Why a Groundplane is Important, How It Works & Is Installed
Ham radio enthusiasts, especially those who work the 160 meter band (which is directly above the AM band at 1800 KHz) provide a rich source of helpful hints on setting up an effective ground system:
Good Ground is Hard to Find
Grounding in RF Environments
One last technical note and caution - true RF grounds should not radiate. Most conductors carrying RF current will radiate if not buried in the earth.
This phenomenon means a long ground lead can cause compliance problems with the FCC. Instead of constructing an antenna with a ground, you might inadvertently build something engineers call an "off-center fed dipole."
Building an off-center fed dipole could earn an FCC citation, like this one: FCC Citation for Excessive Ground Lead
Low Power Radio on Amazon
Low Power Radio on Amazon.com
Get on the Air with One Click, Buy a Transmitter Bundle from Amazon.comMany hobbyists agree that the F-S variable power 0.1 to 0.5 W FM Transmitter is one of the best transmitters for the price. Add the convenience of a selection of premium quality accessories and you can literally be on the air with a single click.
Connect your antenna to the transmitter with your included ultra low-loss (55.4 db/100m), 8 mm diameter, rugged class 8D broadcasting cable and add your programming with the included 6 foot heavy duty stereo audio cable.
Necessary adapters are included, too - a simple and cost-effective solution to increase your range, minimize signal loss and maximize your broadcasting enjoyment.
Peace of mind with the lifetime warranty.
Check out these reviews from real users:
• "All components of the bundle are high quality."
• "The Rangebooster antenna definitely extends the range"
• "Signal goes through brick-metal buildings and embankments as if they were not there"
• "The transmitter unit defaults to .1 watts which is how I've been using it."
• "I am able to get more range with the external antenna"
• "Set up was so easy. The sound quality was awesome. I love this transmitter!"
• "The transmitter works well given I am out in the 'bush' away from town"
• "Worked great right out of the box. Very pleased!!"
• "It is a very compact and easy to use transmitter with impressive stereo fidelity"
So quit wishing and waiting, quit struggling with inferior approaches and “Git er dun!”
Click below to order direct from Amazon.com
Bundle Deal #1: F-S 0.1 - 0.5 Watt Long Range FM Transmitter, RangeBooster 2.0 Professional Grade Antenna Kit, Broadcasting and Audio Cables ($300 value!), now only $179.96
Bundle Deal #2: 0.5 W Fail-Safe Long Range FM Transmitter FS CZH-05B + Rangemax 1.0 Antenna ($200 value!), now only $150.00
Bundle Deal #3: Fail-Safe 0.5 W Long Range FM Transmitter + 1/4 Wave GP Antenna Kit ($200 value!), now only $149.95
Power Blaster Bundle Deal #4: Fail-Safe RangeStud 15 WATT FM Transmitter + RangeMax Professional Grade Antenna ($400 value!), now only $345.95!