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Old 09-20-2010, 3:28 PM
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Default Listening to DPS

I just bought a Pro 106 Digital Trunking scanner from Radio shack and was wondering what system DPS uses and if I am able to hear all of their communications. I have programmed some frequencies in around my area for the dispatches but all I hear is dispatch. I can not pick up any of the trooper traffic from the cars all I hear is dispatch. Is it that im to far from the cars or am I not able to pick up the traffic from the cars?

Thanks for the help,

And ignore the name. Lol
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YourMom View Post
I just bought a Pro 106 Digital Trunking scanner from Radio shack and was wondering what system DPS uses and if I am able to hear all of their communications. I have programmed some frequencies in around my area for the dispatches but all I hear is dispatch. I can not pick up any of the trooper traffic from the cars all I hear is dispatch. Is it that im to far from the cars or am I not able to pick up the traffic from the cars?

Thanks for the help,

And ignore the name. Lol
Your Pro-106 is capable of receiving TX DPS, which uses digital (P25), on conventional frequencies (meaning not part of a trunked system).

However, whether you can hear both the base stations (the dispatch offices) and the troopers in their cars is dependent on several things.

TX DPS uses what is known as a duplex system. The dispatch office will transmit on one frequency, while the mobiles (the troopers actually out on the highways) will respond on an entirely different one. Unless you're relatively close to that unit, say 10-15 miles, you probably will only hear the dispatch office. The actual distance that you could hear the mobile would depend on a lot of factors, such as whether you're using an external antenna, if the mobile unit is on top of a hill, or down below one. Bottom line, it could be hit and miss.

You did not list your location, so just take a look at DPS-Dallas in the database for an example:
You'll see that the dispatcher is transmitting on 155.4525; the 128 NAC is information that you'd enter in your Pro-106 as well.
The troopers working off of that channel will respond on 154.7025. So, unless you're close to them, and your scanner moves from the 155.4525 frequency to 154.7025, you'd never hear them.

For units farther away from the dispatch office, however, you will usually hear both sides of the radio traffic on a mobile repeater. For instance, for the section of I-20 west of Fort Worth from the Tarrant County line through Parker County, you'll hear DPS Mineral Wells, and the troopers on the highway, on a repeater that's near Aledo, on 159.2100. (Look under Region V, DPS Mineral Wells, you'll see 'Aledo Dispatch' listed.)

At times, dispatch offices such as Dallas will switch to "repeater mode", and you will hear both sides of the transmission on the main channel. But this is not always the case.

You can look on the database page for the frequencies used in your specific area. Enter both the base & mobile frequencies (the mobile frequency is listed as the 'input' to the dispatch frequency), as well as any mobile repeaters in your vicinity. Alternatively, just enter the frequencies in the first section listed on the page, the Statewide APCO-25 channel plan. Yep, it looks like a boatload of frequencies, but look closely. The same ones, especially under the mobile repeaters, are used repeatedly, just with different NAC codes.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:06 PM
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Question

Ah so the Pro 106 will defiantly pick up DPS transmissions. Im from around the Huntsville area and I have input the 25 channels into my scanner and have also put in the Huntsville dispatch and the two other frequencies. With the Huntsville dispatch all I was hearing was dispatch and mainly from Conroe. But I will try putting the input frequencies into my scanner and see if that helps. I currently dont have an antenna other then the rubber duck supplied, but I am looking into getting one for my car. Any suggestions? I also travel to the Gonzales are frequently for family, what would I need to put into my scanner to hear DPS there? The closest thing is New Braunfuls.

Thanks for the Help.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:35 PM
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What is the best and most user friendly software for the bcd396xt ?
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Old 09-21-2010, 7:29 AM
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If you are in Huntsville, try to monitor 159.2175 NAC 151 That repeater is in Huntsville and is not duplex so you will hear the base and mobile units. Also putting up an outside antenna will significantly improve your reception. I am in Houston with a antenna in the attic and routinely pick up DPS Beaumont, Conroe, Pierce, Texas City as well as Houston. When tropo conditions are favorable, I hear DPS traffic from Austin, San Antonio, Lufkin and Bryan.

Wayne
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Old 09-21-2010, 8:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1096TEXAN View Post
What is the best and most user friendly software for the bcd396xt ?
FreeSCAN (ScanNow.org - The Home of FreeSCAN!)
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Old 09-21-2010, 8:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1096TEXAN View Post
What is the best and most user friendly software for the bcd396xt ?
"Best" is really an opinion of the user. I use FreeScan for my 396XT, as well as the other DMA Uniden scanners. It does everything I need to do.

Other software packages are available. See this in the Wiki for an overview, as well as this article, which shows the software that works for each model of Uniden scanner.

Besides FreeScan, the other two choices I would consider would be either ProScan or ARC-XT. I am considering ProScan, since it also covers some of my older scanners (BC780XLT, & the BC250D). I would not recommend ScanControl. I have that program as well, but it's frequency entry/editing is not very user friendly. Sort of clunky, and in my opinion, not laid out so that it flows in a logical order at all times.

FreeScan is free, so no reason not to try it. Both ProScan & ARC-XT allow a free trial period before you have to buy or quit using them. Give them all a try, see which one you like the best, since that's the real test. Any of them will program your scanner.
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Old 09-21-2010, 10:13 AM
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The New Braunfels repeater is remotely operated by DPS San Antonio.

If you're in New Braunfels (my hometown, Las Fontanas being the name Spanish name for Comal Springs) you will not hear this repeater (159.2100). You will hear Repeater 21 (159.0975 NAC 162; our db shows it's location on US281 near Bexar-Bulverde). All HP/CVE troopers in Comal County (6590s), Hays County (6360s), southern Caldwell County (6460s) and most of the time eastern Guadalupe County (6530s) are using Repeater 21 and dispatch constantly asks "Unit on New Braunfels reidentify." I also hear 6540s but I haven't confirmed their location. This repeater is most active.

159.2100 NAC 107 in New Braunfels, is only rarely used. If I were a betting man I'd say it wasn't always on.

Someone in Seguin, Converse, Stockdale or Elmendorf could probably offer a good recommendation for listening that far east of San Antonio.
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Last edited by texasemt13; 09-21-2010 at 10:17 AM..
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Old 09-21-2010, 10:35 AM
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I see, looking at the ULS application for KKI413 (here) that it is licensed in San Antonio and Elmendorf, and that the Elmendorf site has quite a few frequencies licensed to it, though none have been confirmed in digital. Can anyone out in the Elmendorf, Stockdale, China Springs area confirm if any of these are used in digital or is everyone pretty much close enough to use Base B1 to get in to San Antonio?
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Old 09-21-2010, 1:44 PM
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Thanks for all of the help with DPS guys. I have one more question for yall. Im looking into getting an antenna for may car. I have the Pro-106 from Radio Shack, which antenna do yall think would be better?



SpectrumForce Wideband Antenna Mag Mount and BNC

• High Quality, Low Cost
• Covers 25-1300 MHz
• Unique 5-prong base design
• Compact Size
• Conveniently Detachable

From Scannermasters or should I get this one from radio shack

Magnet-mount mobile scanner antenna

25 to 1300MHz. About 36" high, it includes a 16-foot cable with BNC type adapter connector. (Magnetic-mount antennas are not recommended for use on vinyl roofs.)

* Great replacement for lost antennas
* Longer length than most stock antennas
* Better performance than stock antennas


Thanks again for the help
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Old 09-21-2010, 2:00 PM
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Either would be about the same. Having had the RS antenna, I can say that the SpectrumForce looks like it's nicer. It also looks like it has a smaller profile- a good thing on windy day with a mag mount. This is a bit cheaper than the RS one also (after shipping they'd be the same probably, considering the RS one has no shipping).

The RS one isn't bad (remove the top 6m element for a lower profile, since it won't help anyway). But it isn't great either. As far as antennas go it's up there with the ugliest and has a rather large magnet. But then again, the RS down the street probably has one that you could get today and not have to wait.
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Old 09-21-2010, 2:35 PM
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As indicated, I used to work for TDCJ/UTMB. Hence, I made monthly trips to serve on a post-mortem review board. Some of my best scanning memories occurred in Walker county. Since I hated staying overnight in Huntsville, I would stay in Conroe instead. Huntsville rolls up the town at midnight. With the TxWarn, DPS, and TDCJ, you have plenty to monitor in that area. With a good outdoor antenna, you would likely pull in Houston PD as well. Nothing beats a hot night listening to a scanner in Houston on loop 610. I miss scanning Houston, but not the traffic or humidity. It is unholy.

I currently use a GRE PSR 500 attached to a wide range magnetic antenna purchased from Grove Enterprises. Be advised, I don't know if they still have this stainless steel model in stock, but it rusted like crazy. It still receives quite well. This antenna was relatively inexpensive. In my opinion, RS antennas are nothing but junk. Larsen makes some fine antennas as well.
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Last edited by Ensnared; 09-21-2010 at 2:38 PM..
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Old 09-25-2010, 12:59 PM
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I actually use an RS mag mount antenna for my Yaesu FT-7900R and it works but it's nothing special. For the most part, any wideband magmount antenna is going to perform largely the same with most of the gain primarily coming from placing the antenna on top of the vehicle raising it's line of sight and removing it from the metal interior of a vehicle(which attenuates signals).

If the area you're in or what you're interested in listening to is mostly composed of VHF communications, maybe look into getting a VHF 1/4 wave mag mount antenna or something with even more gain if you're willing to maybe drill a hole in your vehicle. At the very least a VHF mag mount should be worth the the slight extra cost over a wideband antenna, especially if you are having problems with reception right now as it is, and will offer decent reception on other common public safety bands.
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