I am just a week into PiAware.
I had a small antenna sitting on top of a wooden bookshelf in a windowless room with a skylight.
The listing says 1m, but the cable is 3m.
It fell over at some point, so it was flat instead of upright.
I put a metal bracket in the skylight well, and set the antenna on it.
I put a 75mm aluminum disc under it
I put a 170mm aluminum disk under it.
You have to know what the traffic patterns are in your area.
Because I am about 80 miles north of SFO, it is quite possible that there would be more flights outside of 50 miles than inside.
I look at three things to judge efficiency.
I look at SkyView, and judge where the visible flights are, with tracks on so I can see where they appeared, and watch the distance as they disappear.
I look at the statistics page for the polar view, to see the distance and direction of views.
I look at the statistics page “Positions Reported by Distance from Receiver”
I look at the ratio of <50, 50-100, and >100.
Adjust for different days, including today, as different from the default last 24 hours.
Today, with a 170mm aluminum disc as a ground plane, I am at 13,000; 1,000; 4. That’s 7% over 50.
With just the metal arm, I was over 10%.
Days of the week might have different traffic, but the SkyView shows flights consistently disappearing at ~50 miles.
Raspberry Pi 3, PiAware image, 64GB MicroSD
Delivered Nov 2, 2018:
FlightAware Pro Stick Plus ADS-B USB Receiver Built-in Filter
1090Mhz Antenna MCX Plug Connector 2.5dbi gains ADS-B Aerial with Magnet Base RG174 1M+MCX Female to SMA male Adapter Connector
Miuzei Raspberry Pi 3 B+ Case Fan, Heat Sinks, 2.5A Power Supply ON Off Switch, Open-Air Cooling Case