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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 02-06-2014, 1:20 PM
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Originally Posted by SteveC0625 View Post
You are correct. The call volume up here is small enough that the chances of missing a page because of an alert on the other channel is right there between slim and now. I am EMS only so I have my pager set up with Priority Scan on the EMS channel if I need to be certain I don't miss a call. For walking around, I have it set on Normal Scan to listen to everything. If our fire tones are going out, it's unlikey that our EMS tones are too because of the way they have stacked pages set up at dispatch. They are sequential if it is a Fire & EMS run. Otherwise, they'd put out the entire EMS dispatch followed by a separate Fire dispatch if it is two different jobs.

It all works fine in a low call volume county, but would fail miserably in a high call volume environment like the one where I spent my dispatch career.
I misunderstood your post-- I didn't realize that both agencies are dispatched by the same dispatch agency. Is there a reason that they use two different frequencies? Both departments I work at use one frequency for dispatch for EVERYONE they dispatch for, and then we have separate fire and EMS tacs.

And yes, it would fail miserably in a high call volume area. One of my volunteer departments is averaging about 10-12 runs a day (it was a lot more before they put in another station near us) and the dispatcher agency there will generally have about 25-30 runs in progress at any given time and during peak hours it's closer to 40. Even radio dispatching fails pretty bad and we only use the radios as a backup. All of the dispatching is done by computer switches at the same time the dispatch is sent to the radio queue. During peak hours, on runs that are closer to our station, it's not unusual for us to get on scene before being dispatched over the radio.

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Right now, I use a U.S.Alert Watchdog 5 channel pager. I have 2 different EMS jobs and am a volunteer firefighter, so I have one channel for each. I have very little, if any use for the scan feature, as they are separated by such physical distance the pager wouldn't even be able to receive any of the other channels programmed in. I could only see it being an advantage if the responder works several different stations/jobs and needs independent alerting for only the one they are at at the time. It could also be beneficial for a multi station agency with different tones for each station to have spares or backup pagers programmed with multiple stations to be loaned out without requiring reprogramming.

That's a good point For an agency with multiple stations it could save them a lot of work if the move people between stations or if the volunteers are moving about on their own time between areas of the run district. I never thought of this because we only have one department in our county that has more than one station, but they use the same set of tones for both stations (both fire only, no EMS). Of course they also insist on sending at least one apparatus from each station to the call regardless of where the run is so maybe this makes sense for them.
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Old 02-06-2014, 7:08 PM
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I misunderstood your post-- I didn't realize that both agencies are dispatched by the same dispatch agency. Is there a reason that they use two different frequencies? Both departments I work at use one frequency for dispatch for EVERYONE they dispatch for, and then we have separate fire and EMS tacs.
Our county is small (pop. 56,000) enough that the EMS primary can also be used for normal ops; dispatch, arrive, clear sort of thing. Same for the Fire primary. EMS is strictly the independent ambulance services and Fire is just the fire departments. Fire has 3 fireground channels available, EMS has two tac channels for major incidents. Fire & EMS also have two combined tac channels as well. We had a far-sighted Fire Coordinator who applied for the channels with an eye to the future.

Most counties that have moved to something other than analog conventional have kept one channel for fire and ems paging while all ops are on P25 or trunked or whatever. The alerting channel strictly one way paging: Disptach to agencies.

I think we may be headed that way over the next couple of years as DHS grant money is expended. For now it works pretty well.
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Old 02-06-2014, 7:28 PM
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Jeez, I was thinking the 6 would bring along some sort of P25 alerting capabilities. But, it doesnt look like it from what I have read, or different band offerings. I'm suprised no low band either. One thing that would be nice is PL/DPL decode capability on monitor mode. Im curious to see pricing. Personally, I think the V's are overpriced for such a simple reciever. We shall see...
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Old 02-06-2014, 10:21 PM
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If the new Min VI would decode PL as well as the tones, then I'd be interested in it. We have problems picking up nearby users on our UHF channel, and that's why we tried the Unication pagers. Problem with those is the poor battery life.
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Old 02-06-2014, 10:55 PM
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I will stick with my min IV. If I am going to carry a Min V, Ill just carry a radio.
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Old 02-06-2014, 11:13 PM
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Exciting! I hope to have one quite soon to checkout the "Improved receiver design". These are the things first responders keep on them to alert them someone is dying and needs their help. Thats pretty important in my book with no external antenna. I've had stupid problems with the V inside houses

of course, if it was up to me and probably many others - Minitor 2
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Old 02-07-2014, 11:48 AM
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Couple updates:

We are still awaiting pricing for the Minitor VI, everyone I have talked to is amazed it is taking this long to release pricing. Hopefully we will have something on Monday.

$999.99 is a place holder pricing on our webstore. Sorry for the confusion on this.

I have been ensured there is product in the pipeline for the Minitor VI launch and should be all good for the week of 22 FEB launch.

** My distributor is advising they are making a heavy investment in Minitor V LOW BAND pagers, enough to last through the end of the year. VHF and UHF will become rather scarce near the end of March.

We are trying to stay on top of this launch and will update as we gleen more info.
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Old 02-07-2014, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by chrismol1 View Post
Exciting! I hope to have one quite soon to checkout the "Improved receiver design". These are the things first responders keep on them to alert them someone is dying and needs their help. Thats pretty important in my book with no external antenna. I've had stupid problems with the V inside houses

of course, if it was up to me and probably many others - Minitor 2
If you compare the receiver specs on the Min5 and Min6 they are identical. If you are having problems with the 5 you should expect the same with the new one. You should also expect the new pager to cost more $$$ than the Min5.

The engineers that built the Minitor 2 now build the Watchdog pager. They left Motorola when M outsourced Min 3,4,5 production to China and went out on their own.
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Old 02-07-2014, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by 12dbsinad View Post
Jeez, I was thinking the 6 would bring along some sort of P25 alerting capabilities. But, it doesnt look like it from what I have read, or different band offerings. I'm suprised no low band either. One thing that would be nice is PL/DPL decode capability on monitor mode. Im curious to see pricing. Personally, I think the V's are overpriced for such a simple reciever. We shall see...
I don't think there are any voice paging provisions in the P25 standards. At least none that we are used to. Also, I can only imagine how much a P25 pager would cost! Add "Digital" to anything and the price goes up to the moon with little benefit to the end user.

As for low band, it's a dying market. Sure there are users out there but there are less and less every day. What company would build a product for a market that is only going to get smaller. In PA the few remaining counties on low band are mostly wither planning or implementing a switch. The only place where I think it'll be hard is in NY on Long Island where the airwaves are already packed tight and they can't get a UHF or VHF frequency assigned.

Last edited by pete7919; 02-07-2014 at 12:34 PM.. Reason: Add to comment
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Old 02-07-2014, 5:22 PM
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This link will take you to one vendor's sales pages for the VI. Surprisingly, the programming cradle is advertised at $95. The one channel pager at $369 and the 5 channel for $45 more. There's more.

Motorola Minitor VI Programming Cradle

No way yet to know if this is final pricing or the one vendor is rolling the dice to get early sales.

They are also giving a free programming cradle with the purchase of 5 or more pagers.

We'll see how it plays out.
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Old 02-07-2014, 7:19 PM
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Originally Posted by pete7919 View Post
If you compare the receiver specs on the Min5 and Min6 they are identical. If you are having problems with the 5 you should expect the same with the new one. You should also expect the new pager to cost more $$$ than the Min5.

The engineers that built the Minitor 2 now build the Watchdog pager. They left Motorola when M outsourced Min 3,4,5 production to China and went out on their own.

Interesting about the "improved receiver" advertisment. I wonder what they actually mean by that. Although, just going by the receiver specs isnt worth much as they all seem to be genaric.
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  #32 (permalink)  
Old 02-07-2014, 11:13 PM
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I was hoping for the new pager to have expanded decode capability. Some options would be DTMF or 5/6-tone. I'll hope for a firmware upgrade.
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Old 02-07-2014, 11:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sooomoney;21****2
I was hoping for the new pager to have expanded decode capability. Some options would be DTMF or 5/6-tone. I'll hope for a firmware upgrade.
Don't count on it. Unfortunately the paging sector is dying a slow death.

There is just not enough call for "DTMF", "5/6 tone", "P25" or heck even PL. There are just a handful of systems using these options. Motorola is designing a product for the 95%, not the 5%.

Craig
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Old 02-08-2014, 6:31 AM
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Hey craig do you know if $37.50 is going to be the finalized price for the Minitor VI programming cradle? If so how long before I can purchase one because thats a great price. Wiscomm might get some business once the final price is posted for the Minitor VI. I am hoping to work with my chief to get started on some new radios and pagers. Thank you for your business in the past because I have bought tons from you guys.
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Old 02-08-2014, 6:49 AM
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Hey craig do you know if $37.50 is going to be the finalized price for the Minitor VI programming cradle? If so how long before I can purchase one because thats a great price. Wiscomm might get some business once the final price is posted for the Minitor VI. I am hoping to work with my chief to get started on some new radios and pagers. Thank you for your business in the past because I have bought tons from you guys.
MSRP on the Programming kit is $39.00. At least one online vendor is giving them away with purchases of 5 pagers or more before the end of March.

Word I heard is that the programming cradle connects the PC with a standard USB cable. No TTL or Serial adapters required.
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Old 02-08-2014, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by MFDHoward View Post
Hey craig do you know if $37.50 is going to be the finalized price for the Minitor VI programming cradle? If so how long before I can purchase one because thats a great price. Wiscomm might get some business once the final price is posted for the Minitor VI. I am hoping to work with my chief to get started on some new radios and pagers. Thank you for your business in the past because I have bought tons from you guys.
As for the programming cradle we have a few on order with a scheduled ship date of 12 FEB. I will have a better feel for what's all included at that time. All my info shows this as the cradle and USB cable. The software will be a FREE download on the public website. $37.50 is a heck of alot cheaper then the ~$200 pricing on the MIN V kit.

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Old 02-08-2014, 10:18 PM
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I'm still looking for used Minitor V kits. I am assuming that people sell of ones they don't need anymore, but I have not been able to find one anywhere! Where do people normally sell their used programming equipment?
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Old 02-09-2014, 6:39 AM
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Originally Posted by WuLabsWuTecH View Post
I'm still looking for used Minitor V kits. I am assuming that people sell of ones they don't need anymore, but I have not been able to find one anywhere! Where do people normally sell their used programming equipment?
Personally I know this isn't the section for it but I bought mine for two hundred...give me til monday to speak to my chief about getting some Minitor VI's and I will give you my programmer for real cheap seeing how I won't need it anymore.
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Old 02-10-2014, 11:00 AM
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From what I heard on the intro video the software will only be available from MOL, The pager itself is nothing more than Motorola doing there very least to please a market that is on its last legs. I carry a Unication GSM pager and that is by far the best pager since the Minitor 2. I have every surrounding county, plus the ability to scan them should I need too.

Why in the world you make a pager that has 5 channels but allow the pager to only listen two of them at a time. I agree with concerns of the pager missing a call. However I have upwards of 3 jurisdictions scanning 7 channels. Have not missed a call coming across the units yet.

Also the Unication units have every type of alerting function there is, Motorola secured themselves another seat in the market, But Unication is who made there pagers for many years.
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Old 02-10-2014, 11:39 AM
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From what I heard on the intro video the software will only be available from MOL, The pager itself is nothing more than Motorola doing there very least to please a market that is on its last legs. I carry a Unication GSM pager and that is by far the best pager since the Minitor 2. I have every surrounding county, plus the ability to scan them should I need too.

Why in the world you make a pager that has 5 channels but allow the pager to only listen two of them at a time. I agree with concerns of the pager missing a call. However I have upwards of 3 jurisdictions scanning 7 channels. Have not missed a call coming across the units yet.

Also the Unication units have every type of alerting function there is, Motorola secured themselves another seat in the market, But Unication is who made there pagers for many years.
I tried the G1 and thought it was way too complicated for the average guy. They tried to do everything with it. Most firefighters just want a pager that'll go off when they have a call. As for all the scanning and monitoring only a small percentage actually need that. Also with the GSM it just seems so impractical to pay a monthly bill for a bunch of pagers. Who would do that department wide? You also have to pay for all the features regardless if you will use them or not. What if I don't need 64 channels and 8 switch positions or even stored voice? There's no choice you have to pay for it.

Another thing that concerns me with Unication is their warranty and repair. They will only replace units under warranty, no repair. Why don't they have the capability to repair? This leads to the same business Motorola (which was really Unication) had where you'd send your pagers in for repair and they'd tell you they were irreparable and you had to buy another.

I'm a WatchDog convert. They scan 5 channels and that's plenty for me. The buttons are simple and the batteries are AAA. When I have a problem they repair my units and send the same ones back to me. They have a 5 year warranty and have been pretty good about repairing whatever I need. (I know I sound like a commercial, too.)
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