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Author Topic: FM Audio on 50.125 was tracked to a Baby Monitor in Oregon  (Read 10562 times)
W7PM
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« on: August 01, 2011, 12:02:30 PM »

About 2 weeks ago, myself and a couple other local 6 meter guys began to pick up a very strong S9 FM signal coming from our SE area of Aloha, Oregon (just west of Portland).

After a week of tracking the culprit down (and listening to all their yelling, screaming and worse, old re-2runs of MatLock)...I traced the offending signal to a house that is about 1.5 miles away from my place.

The home owner was less than happy with me showing up and was flabbergasted when I let him listen to the signal and conversations happening inside his home on my 6 meter walkie.

His wife had picked up a cheapo Chinese made $29 transmitter and 2 receiver baby monitor from K-2Mart or Target almost the same time as the signals first appeared (not sure as they wouldn't fully disclose that to me about where they bought them from, but they wouldn't).

He did go down and unplug the system and the signal, after 24/7 and 2 weeks was gone. I did get to look at the transmitter momentarily, but other than being MADE IN CHINA, there was not a visible model number on the device. The housewife by this time was being pissy and I was asked to leave, with the assurances that they would take the baby monitor back and buy a 900 MHZ or a 2.4 GHZ unit as I suggested to do.

Later that night, they simply plugged it back it and when I pressed them in a visit the next day, that they couldn't find the receipt so I was SOL. Of course I warned him about the forthcoming FCC complaint, but they were sick of hearing from me already, just 2 times. So, unfortunately I was totally unable to grab the part number of the actual baby monitor, other than the fact it was CHINESE MADE and was distributed by a electronics company in Indiana.

The question to the group here, has anyone seen, heard or known of the cheaper, probably not FCC certified Chines Baby Monitors, being heard on 50.125 MHZ FM and not their usual 49 MHZ channels?

Marc W7PM
organixtech@gmail.com
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W3LK
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« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2011, 07:47:11 PM »

I would think that a couple of hours of a long-winded QSO on 50.125 would do wonders for getting them to replace the units, especially if they happened every evening for a week or so. Smiley

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A smoking section in a restaurant makes as much sense as a peeing section in a swimming pool.
WB4BYQ
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Posts: 185




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« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2011, 06:47:54 AM »

Contact Mike Gruber, at the ARRL, he is the RFI engineer, he would like to hear from you.
Send him a complain letter with the name and address of the location and describe the
problem.  The ARRL has the approval from the FCC to write the first letter to the ower of their
responsabilty.  The letter is well done, and the letter will be generated fast, copies to the FCC and other parties.

I have used this service twice and it works.

richard WB4BYQ
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KF7CG
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« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2011, 11:12:15 AM »

Yes, do get the ARRL and the FCC involved now before that neighbor decides to complain about Ham interference to the baby monitor and every other piece of electronics the every owned to their local representatives and try to get Ham antennas banned or zoned into unaffordability.

KF7CG
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2011, 02:01:40 PM »

I would think that a couple of hours of a long-winded QSO on 50.125 would do wonders for getting them to replace the units, especially if they happened every evening for a week or so. Smiley



I'd record them continuously until they say something they really don't want to be heard, and then call them on the phone to play it back to them.  "Next time, I'll play it for the local TV-news instead."  No presumption of privacy when you're transmitting a wireless signal.
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N0YXB
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« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2011, 03:47:45 PM »

Great idea, I love it.
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KE7IZL
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« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2011, 10:09:23 PM »

Today I was was scanning through the bands on my ICom PCR1000 and heard what I'm pretty sure was a baby monitor on some 49.x megahertz.
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KF7CG
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« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2011, 04:05:25 AM »

I don't know the exact frequencies for the 49MHz stuff, but that is an allowed area. It contains among other things remote control object and childrens handy talkies. That is probably where the bad baby monitor was supposed to be located.

KF7CG
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KB1TXK
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« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2011, 08:24:46 AM »

Older baby monitors use 49mhz. 

They used to come up on my old scanner when I was a kid (and had all 10 channels of the original cordless phones programmed into it).

Baby monitors and OLD cordless phones shared 49mhz along w/ RC car controls and walkie-talkies.
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W3LK
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« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2011, 03:28:06 PM »

If one scans around, it's amazing some of the conversations one can hear from baby monitors. I had three neighbors buy new ones after an afternoon conversation with them in a nearby park one evening. <g>

Interesting that they never complained about my 6m activity, though.
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KE7IZL
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« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2011, 09:11:36 PM »

One prank you could play is go to the baby monitor frequency with a ham band 6M transceiver (either poorly designed, or hacked to allow PTT to be pressed when out of band) then transmit to their baby monitor receiver. If your 6M rig is going 100W and their baby monitor transmitter is only maybe 0.1W then they'll be able to hear you as your signal will drown out the baby monitor transmitter. Then say to them over the radio "I can hear your baby monitor transmission. Be careful you don't say any swear words in your household or you'll be violating the FCC rules that require radio transmissions to not include obscenity/profanity. If I hear that coming over your baby monitor's signal, I'll report you to the FCC". Hearing that coming out of their baby monitor receiver's speaker might make them think twice about swearing, or at least STRONGLY consider getting a newer 2.4GHz or 5.8GHz unit and getting rid of the old one.
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K2OWK
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« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2011, 09:26:01 PM »

50.125 is within the 6 meter ham band. If you transmit you will need to give your call to be legal. Just a reminder.

73s

K2OWK
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KE7IZL
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« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2011, 10:40:55 PM »

50.125 is within the 6 meter ham band. If you transmit you will need to give your call to be legal. Just a reminder.

73s

K2OWK

I meant outside the ham band on that guy operating an old baby monitor at 49.x MHz. As I said before, if I do as I stated in my last post it would likely convince him he needed a tech upgrade. Just as we all needed to evolve beyond apes, we all need to upgrade our old 49.x MHz wireless devices to more modern 2.4 and 5.8GHz devices. If I convince whoever is on th3 49.x band that ANYONE can listen in and might catch bad words if he happens to swear (making his cursing, if he does any, and most people do these days, on his baby monitor a crime by FCC rules) then maybe he will upgrade. And most scanners can't go to 2.4 and 5.8GHz so nobody would be listening in, and preparing to call the FCC on them. That would scare him into "evolving", into getting the better technology, like 99.999% of the people out there have already done solely on the account that newer is better.
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N3OX
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« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2011, 07:18:41 AM »

Then say to them over the radio "I can hear your baby monitor transmission. Be careful you don't say any swear words in your household or you'll be violating the FCC rules that require radio transmissions to not include obscenity/profanity. If I hear that coming over your baby monitor's signal, I'll report you to the FCC". Hearing that coming out of their baby monitor receiver's speaker might make them think twice about swearing, or at least STRONGLY consider getting a newer 2.4GHz or 5.8GHz unit and getting rid of the old one.


I was going to respond to this but instead I'm going to assume you're just trolling.
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73,
Dan
http://www.n3ox.net

Monkey/silicon cyborg, beeping at rocks since 1995.
AC5UP
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« Reply #14 on: August 09, 2011, 09:03:33 AM »

FWIW I went for a spin of the dial and found three baby monitors that are Q-5 in my neighborhood... 49.830, 850, 870.

While I'm sure there are newer and more secure digital items available, the old-school (and probably bottom dollar) technology is still on the air. Approximately 10 years ago I called a 6 Meter FM net on 50.590 and a net member advised me that I was FB on a neighbor's baby monitor. Seems the neighbor worked with W5ATV and mentioned to him that someone 'always calling five up' was on his baby monitor every Wednesday night.

Neighbor never complained to me.
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