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General Scanning Discussion For general questions not specific to a model of scanner or general discussion of use of a scanner. Location specific posts should be directed to the regional forums listed below.

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Old 12-08-2012, 12:42 AM
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Default Radio Shack.... (Stores)

I remember years ago when I was young I would go into the local radio shack and see some 40-50yr old guy hunkering over a soldering iron behind the counter. You could ask him about anything and he had made one or taken one apart just a few weeks before.
Now Radio Shack is filled with kids working like its walmart.
I went to 3 radio shacks today in the kansas city area.
I was told the following...

a, no one bought scanners anymore because everything went digital and you cant listen any more.

b. you cannot use a 12v ac adapter for a 996xt scanner because it says 13.8 and we dont carry that..

c. I have an app on my iphone has an app that works just as good as a police scanner and better yet its legal for me to carry it in my car.

d. there are only a few companies around that will program those new digital scanners for you...

oh.. i do miss the good old days when radio shack hired tinkerers and sages instead of community college business major drop outs...

Alex
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Old 12-08-2012, 6:36 AM
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The convenience was nice but with the internet giving you access to sites like Radio Reference and it's amazing knowledge base and resources like Scanner Master do you really need that old guy behind the counter?
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Old 12-08-2012, 7:29 AM
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I've had several experiences myself with cellphone shack. The idea of a cool place for the radio enthusiast to shop went out with the invention of cellphones. Let me guess the kid behind the counter tried to sell you a new fangled cellphone?


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Old 03-06-2014, 7:07 AM
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Default I missed this reply a long while back.

Quote:
Originally Posted by trap5858 View Post
The convenience was nice but with the internet giving you access to sites like Radio Reference and it's amazing knowledge base and resources like Scanner Master do you really need that old guy behind the counter?
Personally, I have learned more from the "old guard" than I have from books and the internet.
There is more information on the web for certain.
But there are things that the old guys know that simply never made it to print.
They also can save you hours of research by cutting straight to the core issues...
On top of that I enjoy knowing the local guy and walking in and talking about a project.
I goto Lowe's because they have a guy there who is a retired General Contractor who knows how to do just about everything... he also a taught at a local high school for a decade... He can break anything down and gives incredibly insightful advice.
Vs. Home Depot that has a bunch of housewives and juco dropouts working there...
Now, please give me the walk in face to face experience with the been there done that crowd everyday.

I do see your point though... I do a massive amount of research on the internet for my job....
Maybe that is why I prefer the old guys... its a break from the digital world.
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Old 03-06-2014, 8:30 AM
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I bought some things from RADIO SHACK years ago and generally ok. However, within the last decade or so, they seemed to be less and less in tune with the scanner scene. Perhaps there was a time before the web when we learned more form the old man behind the counter. Now, like it or not, we're the old men(and woman) since many of the younger people listen to public safety on their Smartphone or other such units. That's fine but old geezers like me know that there is more to monitor than just public safety.
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Old 03-06-2014, 9:27 AM
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I still have a bunch of Radio Shack catalogs from 1987 to 1991.I still like looking at them and remembering how good Radio shack once was.Sure miss them good old days.

Tom
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Old 03-06-2014, 10:39 AM
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I still buy from them occasionally, but I know exactly what I want when I go in. If you expect the staff to help you with something radio/scanner related, good luck. If it isn't about a mobile phone, they look at you with the deer in the headlights look. I needed something when I was mounting my HP-1 in my vehicle. While I was there, the kid asked me if I needed help. For fun, I asked him if he had a right angle BNC male to SMA male adapter. You would have thought I was speaking a foreign language. Radio Shack is totally irrelevant in this day and age.
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Old 03-06-2014, 11:22 AM
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its funny a few years ago i was out of work and decided to give radio shack a try.

well, first of all i have a AAS in Electronic Eng, Diploma in Electronic Servicing, a Cert from Mobile Radio Training Inst and 10 years experience as a bench level ET.

I DID NOT PASS THE PRE-EMPLOYMENT TEST!!!

I now walk in the store and ask the salesperson for something ........ like a transister or IC , and the answer is " may i interest you in a new cell phone?"

i too miss the old days when the staff at least knew something about the products they sold. could you see some these people that passed the "pre-employment test" trying to sell reel to reel tape decks?

and dont get me started on them selling scanners ;-)
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Old 03-06-2014, 11:59 AM
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Radio Shack is dying and having to close stores because they left the date that took them to the prom and they decided to try and turn the place into a mini-Best Buy. As soon as they took CBs, antennas, radio parts, scanners, wiring, etc. out of their stores and started focusing on cell phones and headphones I knew that the end was near.
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Old 03-06-2014, 2:43 PM
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yeah, you nailed it. thats it. when they left the "bread and butter" it was the begining of the end.
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Old 03-06-2014, 5:54 PM
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The hobbyist market is dead at the retail level as everyone is getting their gear online. Saves time and money but is turning society into a bunch of antisocial misfits.
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Old 03-06-2014, 5:55 PM
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Even worse here in Canada, Radio Shack was bought out some 10 years ago by Circuit City (then Bell) and is called The Source. This store is even worse then the few Radio Shacks I have been in when I visit the States.
And yes I also miss the good old Radio Shack.
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Old 03-06-2014, 6:08 PM
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It's nice to see folks are still "tenderizing" this dead horse.
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Old 03-07-2014, 6:02 AM
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This is a great example of a situation that requires self examination. You can make the argument that using the electronic media is causing anti social behavior but you can turn that around in that because of anti social behaviior, people are using this method. I remember a story not too long ago about a restaurant using a touch screen to place your order instead of a waitor or waitress. My mom thought that means more isolation. I told her that you can thank your fellow man for that. A restaurant owner/manager has enough to do to prepare and sell food to customers that then has to deal with employee's who don't show up or when they do, they just crab around all day and end up quiting soon and then has to start the whole thing over again. This can apply to any business when who can blame the owner to say the heck with it being tired of being a kindergarten teacher all day. So don't blame the internet for anti social behavior. Such behavior has been with us forever with or without the internet, TV, radio etc.
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Old 03-07-2014, 6:23 AM
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has anyone seen the list of stores that are closing?
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Old 03-07-2014, 6:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RohnsRadio View Post
its funny a few years ago i was out of work and decided to give radio shack a try.

well, first of all i have a AAS in Electronic Eng, Diploma in Electronic Servicing, a Cert from Mobile Radio Training Inst and 10 years experience as a bench level ET.

I DID NOT PASS THE PRE-EMPLOYMENT TEST!!!

I now walk in the store and ask the salesperson for something ........ like a transister or IC , and the answer is " may i interest you in a new cell phone?"

i too miss the old days when the staff at least knew something about the products they sold. could you see some these people that passed the "pre-employment test" trying to sell reel to reel tape decks?

and dont get me started on them selling scanners ;-)
I also applied and although I am not as qualified as you, I do know one end of a soldering iron from the other and I also was dismissed because I had no experience with selling cell phones.

I studied electronics and robotics at college and even then (1989) it was obvious that due to advancements in circuit board design and miniaturization, it was cheaper for someone to simply replace a circuit board rather than try diagnosing and fixing it. Maybe that's part of the reason why Radio Shack is in decline.
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Old 03-07-2014, 8:09 AM
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My mom and I were watching the news a couple of days ago when they said Radio Shack was closing a bunch of stores and she couldn't believe it. She wondered what all those amateur and ham radio hobbyists would do without being able to go in and buy the gear they needed. That should tell you how long it's been since she's been inside a Radio Shack. I told her it wasn't like it was back in the 80s and while they still sell "some" electrical things and scanners, but their main focus nowadays is cell phones and they no longer had the electrical components they once had. Her response? "Oh". Hahaha.
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Old 03-07-2014, 7:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDM View Post
Personally, I have learned more from the "old guard" than I have from books and the internet.
There is more information on the web for certain.
But there are things that the old guys know that simply never made it to print.
They also can save you hours of research by cutting straight to the core issues...
On top of that I enjoy knowing the local guy and walking in and talking about a project.
I consider myself lucky to be near a Radio Shack store with just such a guy. He's been working for RS since the early 1970s. Whenever I go in there and ask for some sort of parts, one of his questions is "Whatcha workin' on?" and then we start talking about it. You get him talking, he has a hard time turning it off. But he's very knowledgeable & very experienced. He's been a great help when I do have questions.
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Old 03-12-2014, 3:46 PM
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Sad situation. I still remember going in an RS several years ago, for the first time in a few years (due to having been broke -- divorce and all that good stuff) and my shock at seeing all the changes for the worse. Once one of my favorite hangouts, now I'm sorry to say that I wouldn't be all that upset if they closed.
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Old 03-13-2014, 1:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RohnsRadio View Post
its funny a few years ago i was out of work and decided to give radio shack a try.

well, first of all i have a AAS in Electronic Eng, Diploma in Electronic Servicing, a Cert from Mobile Radio Training Inst and 10 years experience as a bench level ET.

I DID NOT PASS THE PRE-EMPLOYMENT TEST!!!
Similar experience with me about 20 years ago while in college with a buddy who was a district store manager for Radio Shack in Kansas City. I knew the product line by heart since toddler age and always dreamed of working for them... but he was quick to point out how well I knew the operation meant absolutely nothing. Having any type of former sales experience was all that mattered.

Oh well... I've somehow still survived life without them.
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