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San Francisco Bay Area Discussion Local area specific discussion for the San Francisco Bay area including the North, East and South Bays.

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  #61 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2012, 9:57 PM
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hey all. So I just bought a PRO-197 from radioshack today. I have a RS 20-546 USB cable, which I use with my PRO-164 all the time with no problems. Well for some reason I cannot get the PRO-197 to connect to the PC through this cable, although it works excellent with my PRO-164 and WIN97 software.. Any ideas anyone can shoot me to try?

Nevermind all, I got the problem fixed after extensive troubleshooting.

Last edited by korpseofdeath; 06-09-2012 at 10:11 PM.. Reason: Problem solved.
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  #62 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2012, 10:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben96cal View Post
Has anyone contacted Uniden about this issue with the multi pass issue or whatever it's called?
Both Uniden and GRE know all about P25 systems using simulcast transmission, resulting in multi path (not multi pass) issues.

You folks in California are only now getting to experience this problem - there have been many large P25 simulcast systems put up, with a lot of resulting unhappy scanner listeners for a few years now.

No official statement that I've ever heard of addressing this issue from either vendor.

At this point, I think silence is their way of telling us that they can't or won't fix the issue.
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Old 06-10-2012, 2:09 AM
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Today has been a very busy day, running back and forth to a radio shack that is 20 miles away twice. But I finally got my new radio shack pro-197 scanner. I can now say I have a comparison between radio shack and uniden.

I have a antenna on my roof.I have 100ft of RG-6U Quad Shield running down into my room, and a BNC tee, splitting off with one cable to my pro-197 and one to my bcd996xt. For the first time, I slightly heard Oakland on their P25 site on the pro-197!!!

Now my scanner is showing full signal, bouncing around from 5 bars down to 4 and back to 5 again. Transmission are garbled, and most of the time is very hard to listen to, and follow. But I at least get a signal, and audio, as where the bcd996xt has failed to pick up anything at all. I will take an addition test tomorrow by doing this same comparison, only in my vehicle with a mag mount and my austin spectra mobile antenna. I'll post again tomorrow afternoon and update you all with my results.

P.S. I can also listen to Oakland on the EDACS sites on both scanners perfectly clear... lol

Last edited by korpseofdeath; 06-10-2012 at 2:29 AM..
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Old 06-10-2012, 3:39 AM
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Originally Posted by korpseofdeath View Post
Today has been a very busy day, running back and forth to a radio shack that is 20 miles away twice. But I finally got my new radio shack pro-197 scanner. I can now say I have a comparison between radio shack and uniden.

I have a antenna on my roof.I have 100ft of RG-6U Quad Shield running down into my room, and a BNC tee, splitting off with one cable to my pro-197 and one to my bcd996xt. For the first time, I slightly heard Oakland on their P25 site on the pro-197!!!

Now my scanner is showing full signal, bouncing around from 5 bars down to 4 and back to 5 again. Transmission are garbled, and most of the time is very hard to listen to, and follow. But I at least get a signal, and audio, as where the bcd996xt has failed to pick up anything at all. I will take an addition test tomorrow by doing this same comparison, only in my vehicle with a mag mount and my austin spectra mobile antenna. I'll post again tomorrow afternoon and update you all with my results.

P.S. I can also listen to Oakland on the EDACS sites on both scanners perfectly clear... lol
100ft of cable is way too much. The loss is very high at those freqs with that much cable. Suggest you cut it in at least HALF or more. That will improve your signal.
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Old 06-10-2012, 6:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sixtytwo View Post
Both Uniden and GRE know all about P25 systems using simulcast transmission, resulting in multi path (not multi pass) issues.

You folks in California are only now getting to experience this problem - there have been many large P25 simulcast systems put up, with a lot of resulting unhappy scanner listeners for a few years now.

No official statement that I've ever heard of addressing this issue from either vendor.

At this point, I think silence is their way of telling us that they can't or won't fix the issue.
How right you are sir. I remember reading about all the problems people in the midwest and east coast had been having with a lot of the statewide P25 simulcast systems and their use of LSM. LSM is not a new problem, by any means.

P25 is an open standard, and multiple radio manufacturers can produce P25 digital radios that will work just fine on P25 simulcast... so what are they doing that scanner manufacturers aren't?

I think it's going to come down to a hardware quality issue (tolerance of components, etc) and scanner prices may have to go up (hard to believe since they're already $500+), but they have to do something, even if it's admit that they aren't able to support P25 simulcast at this time.

As it stands now they are bordering on false advertising.
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  #66 (permalink)  
Old 06-10-2012, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by kma371 View Post
100ft of cable is way too much. The loss is very high at those freqs with that much cable. Suggest you cut it in at least HALF or more. That will improve your signal.
What else would you accept as a cable run? I can't cut it too much shorter, at the most would only be 5 feet to shorten on my end in the room, I am running the shortest route possible. I also went up on the roof and attached one of my 6 foot jumper cables straight from my antenna to my scanner, and got the same results. I do know that RG-6U is a bit on the cheaper side of wire, I had alot of extra laying around in my garage and was able to use it when I set my antenna. I can pick up San Francisco, San Mateo, San Jose, Santa Clara, , Walnut Creek and so forth, which I think is alright for my listening need, but there is always room for improvment. How would you change, or what would you recommend for me? My location is San Lorenzo, CA if that makes any difference. I am in the middle of all these agencies, and am just having an exceptional time trying to listen to this new Oakland P25, lol. I'm stuck on EDACS still, with perfect clear audio...

Last edited by korpseofdeath; 06-10-2012 at 11:41 AM..
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:23 PM
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It's almost certainly not your antenna/cable set up, but rather that you're in a dead zone as far as simulcasting is concerned.

That is, transmitters are canceling themselves out.

Try a different antenna location, but in my experience dead zones can be miles wide when you are far from the system's intended coverage area.

This is P25 related as well. You may be able to hear simulcast analog transmissions fine, but P25 just won't decode.
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:29 PM
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Default This should sound familiar

Someone has posted a sample of simulcast P25 audio on youtube:

P25 Simulcast Distortion - YouTube

While this example is from a GRE, the Uniden models perform in a pretty similar fashion.
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Old 06-10-2012, 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by sixtytwo View Post
It's almost certainly not your antenna/cable set up, but rather that you're in a dead zone as far as simulcasting is concerned.
It can be a combination of both. If you need 100ft of cable, then get better some better quality cable.

How high up is your antenna that you need 100ft? Maybe look for some ways to drop it through the attic rather than outside the house. Ive never used more than 35-50 feet even with an antenna on the roof.
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Old 06-10-2012, 1:05 PM
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Originally Posted by kma371 View Post
It can be a combination of both. If you need 100ft of cable, then get better some better quality cable.
Absolutely true - but I was taking my cue from his statement where he said he could clearly monitor many other systems with that setup.

If A, B, C and D work great, and E doesn't... Unless he's only using that antenna with E, which he could be.
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Old 06-10-2012, 7:11 PM
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I reconfigured my setup. My antenna is only two feet above my roof at this time, while next week i will need to get some materials to extend it 10 feet above my roof. That will be plenty for me as at this time, i am pulling in systems 30+ miles away. I have now a 50 foot run of 6U cable into my room, with a T splitter, going to my bcd996xt and pro197. Everything is the same, no differences made anywhere that i noticed. Picked up the same, and quality was the same, very excellent.

Now i also did a test run in my mobile vehicle. In front of my house, i can pick up oakland about 50/50. Very garbled and unable to follow conversations. I got onto 880 northbound from Washington Ave, and the same. Not untill I passed Hegenberger is when oakland was coming in better. I could hear them much better, and actually follow conversations, but the pro197 still seemed like it was having trouble with the P25 system, maybe decoding?

Now would a GRE be any different than a radio shack? Should that be my next purchase for a comparison to see if I can pick up Oakland any better?
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Old 06-10-2012, 7:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by korpseofdeath View Post
Now would a GRE be any different than a radio shack? Should that be my next purchase for a comparison to see if I can pick up Oakland any better?
GRE and Radio Shack are the same. GRE manufacturers for RS. Same radio, different branding.
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Old 06-10-2012, 7:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sixtytwo View Post
Absolutely true - but I was taking my cue from his statement where he said he could clearly monitor many other systems with that setup.

If A, B, C and D work great, and E doesn't... Unless he's only using that antenna with E, which he could be.
You are correct, i use this antenna for all my scanners. CHP, alameda trunked, san mateo, santa clara and san jose
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Old 06-10-2012, 7:29 PM
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GRE and Radio Shack are the same. GRE manufacturers for RS. Same radio, different branding.
Odd that they are both different prices.. Guess ill get the cheaper one next time i get another scanner lol
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Old 06-10-2012, 7:31 PM
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Originally Posted by korpseofdeath View Post
Now would a GRE be any different than a radio shack? Should that be my next purchase for a comparison to see if I can pick up Oakland any better?
GRE makes the RS scanners. A PRO-197 should be identical to a PSR-600 except for firmware which is specific to each with minor differences.
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Old 06-10-2012, 7:34 PM
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Someone has posted a sample of simulcast P25 audio on youtube:

P25 Simulcast Distortion - YouTube

While this example is from a GRE, the Uniden models perform in a pretty similar fashion.
This video is a perfect example on what i am experiencing with my pro 197.
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Old 06-10-2012, 8:21 PM
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Originally Posted by korpseofdeath View Post
This video is a perfect example on what i am experiencing with my pro 197.
That's exactly what my GRE PSR-500 does on Oakland as well.
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Old 06-10-2012, 8:35 PM
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...and it's exactly what happens with my BCD396XT. If you pick up EDACS clearly, it's very likely the P25 distortion and not your setup that's the issue.
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Old 06-13-2012, 9:22 PM
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Has anyone put Oakland P25 on a PSR-600,700 or 800 and see if it does the same thing or atleast is better and worth buying a PSR. This Uniden thing just isn't working for me anymore and giving me grey hair.
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Old 06-14-2012, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Ben96cal View Post
Has anyone put Oakland P25 on a PSR-600,700 or 800 and see if it does the same thing or atleast is better and worth buying a PSR. This Uniden thing just isn't working for me anymore and giving me grey hair.
Not sure I can be any more clear than I have earlier in the thread, but here goes:

All consumer scanners suck at decoding simulcast P25.

Sure, maybe one brand has a 70% decode rate while another has a 80% decode rate, but they're both far below the threshold of usability. Yes, you'll find people talking about how their particular set up works great, but either they've dicked around with directional antennas or they just happen to be lucky in where they live.

Obviously, using a yagi while moving is a non-starter.

People need to get ticked off and hold the manufacturers accountable for this. They've been skating along, ignoring the elephant in the room.
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