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Choppy Audio

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#1
I know there has been many posts about choppy audio in the past. I have read quite a few posts about the subject. Here is the deal.....I'm very new at scanning. I have a Uniden 536 that is hooked to a discone antenna in my attic. The syatem I am trying to monitor is the Lancaster County PA emergency services. 477MHz range. P25 Phase 1. About 20 percent of my hits have choppy audio. I have 5 bars on every signal. I hit at least 5 weather channels no problem. I believe my problem is a Simulcast problem.
8 auto 1.39 1.62 1.90 are my numbers on average. Anyone have any tips?
 

ofd8001

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#2
Finding the best combination of settings for this system is trial and error. No one size fits all because of many variables.

The site settings I have tinkered with and gotten about as clean a signal as I can are:

Site Attenuator
Digital Threshold Mode
Digital Threshold Level

You may have to experiment with combinations. Unfortunately it is time consuming.
 
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Messages
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#3
I have to deal with simulcast distortion aswell. Experimenting with the settings on my scanner did not really help. What made a big differance was experimenting with different antennas. I have been useing a small yagi tv antenna thats works. But lately i was missing alot of the conversations due to simulcast probulem. So i tried a paper clip. And that has been working pretty good. Also moving my scanner around to find the sweet spot. Some times its a few feet others just an inch or too.
 

jcm87jm

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#4
For my choppy simulcast reception on my 436 I switched to the the rs800 antenna and put my p25 system into a favorites list where I could manually set the p25 threshold. For SRECS in Spokane WA, for example, I use 7 and it's been the best it's ever been.

Sent from my Western Electric 1500D using Tapatalk
 
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#5
As others have said, there is no "one size fits all" solution for simulcast problems. You may need to experiment with attenuation, the digital threshold settings (note that manually setting a value has no effect unless you select Manual mode), antenna location, etc. It's also possible you're receiving multiple sites, and the problem is coming from only one site.

During a transmission, the site you're listening to will be displayed in fine print under the Department. Are you getting clear transmissions from the same site as the choppy/garbled ones? Or are all the clear comms from one site and choppy/garbled comms from another?

You may also want to get a directional LPDA or Yagi antenna, and aim it at the closest tower with the strongest signal. That will reduce or eliminate interference from other towers, but will also make it difficult to monitor anything not coming from that tower.
 
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#6
and put my p25 system into a favorites list where I could manually set the p25 threshold.

Is this a setting made from inside the menu or can I adjust it with the function/volume keys while watching the channel?
 
Last edited:

ofd8001

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#7
You can't make adjustments and watch at the same time.

The most direct way is Menu>Manage Favorites>Scroll to the Favorites List>Review/Edit System>Scroll to the System>Edit Site>Scroll to the Site and then you will see the settings I mentioned previously.

Once you've made the changes repeatedly press the Menu button to get back in scanning.

Another way is making the changes in Sentinel, but you'll have to do a Write to Scanner after changing the settings.
 
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Lancaster County PA
#8
Thank you very much. I'll play around with it. When I get a new toy I'm always afraid to push the buttons because I think I'll screw something up and not know how to go back.
 

ofd8001

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#9
Probably wouldn't hurt to make a copy of your SD card. Easiest way is if your computer has a card reader. Turn the scanner off and remove SD card and insert it in a card reader slot on computer. Then copy the card using your Windows Explorer.

You can also just connect the scanner to the computer and select Mass Storage. Then use your Windows Explorer to find the scanner, which shows up as a removable drive. Then do the copy thing.

The copying will give you an easy restore point - just reverse the process and restore the copied files back to the SD card.

Good thing about these scanners is that you can't damage them with bad programming. All you've lost is a little time, but learn something, if things go wrong. Mistakes are good teachers.
 
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