• Effective immediately we will be deleting, without notice, any negative threads or posts that deal with the use of encryption and streaming of scanner audio.

    We've noticed a huge increase in rants and negative posts that revolve around agencies going to encryption due to the broadcasting of scanner audio on the internet. It's now worn out and continues to be the same recycled rants. These rants hijack the threads and derail the conversation. They no longer have a place anywhere on this forum other than in the designated threads in the Rants forum in the Tavern.

    If you violate these guidelines your post will be deleted without notice and an infraction will be issued. We are not against discussion of this issue. You just need to do it in the right place. For example:
    https://forums.radioreference.com/rants/224104-official-thread-live-audio-feeds-scanners-wait-encryption.html

Help me choose a scanner please :)

Status
Not open for further replies.
Joined
Sep 11, 2011
Messages
1
Location
Wisconsin
Hello all. I'm as wet behind the ears as it gets when it comes to radio and scanning, and I'm hoping to break into the hobby.

Here's what I know about electronics in general: All electronic devices, when being manufactured, are filled with "Magic Smoke" and if you do something wrong and the "Magic Smoke" comes out of your expensive little electronic device, it will never work again.

Okay, that being said I'm looking to purchase my first scanner radio. I primarily want to listen to local law enforcement, EMS, fire and railroad, civilian aircraft and whatever else is going on in my little community.

I live in Chippewa county, Wisconsin. I don't think our local services have gone digital, but I might be mistaken.

I am eyeing up the Uniden Bearcat 346XT. It should track all local services and most importantly, it won't break the bank (meaning I won't have to sleep in the doghouse when my wife finds out I bought it).

Any feedback on this scanner? Keep in mind I'm just getting started, and I only need an entry level scanner with trunktracking. I'm pretty sure things around here are still analog. Thanks in advance, and cheers!!
 
Joined
Nov 9, 2006
Messages
1,847
Location
Macomb, Michigan
Hello all. I'm as wet behind the ears as it gets when it comes to radio and scanning, and I'm hoping to break into the hobby.

Here's what I know about electronics in general: All electronic devices, when being manufactured, are filled with "Magic Smoke" and if you do something wrong and the "Magic Smoke" comes out of your expensive little electronic device, it will never work again.

Okay, that being said I'm looking to purchase my first scanner radio. I primarily want to listen to local law enforcement, EMS, fire and railroad, civilian aircraft and whatever else is going on in my little community.

I live in Chippewa county, Wisconsin. I don't think our local services have gone digital, but I might be mistaken.

I am eyeing up the Uniden Bearcat 346XT. It should track all local services and most importantly, it won't break the bank (meaning I won't have to sleep in the doghouse when my wife finds out I bought it).

Any feedback on this scanner? Keep in mind I'm just getting started, and I only need an entry level scanner with trunktracking. I'm pretty sure things around here are still analog. Thanks in advance, and cheers!!
I'm not familiar with bear cat scanners, but from looking at it it seems to be just fine for what you want. You are correct that your county is not digital yet but you never know might be in the future. Welcome to radio reference. You will find plenty of help here. Check out the Wisconsin forum, they would know the best what works in your state.

http://forums.radioreference.com/wisconsin-radio-discussion-forum/
 

captclint

Mentor
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 31, 2005
Messages
2,448
Location
Mountaintop, PA
I find the 346 excellent for a lot of reasons. However, you should consider software to help you program and better understand all the features. It is fairly tedious to program by hand, IMHO. Fortunately, FreeSCAN is an excellent program, and it is free. It allows a automatic download of any or all frequencies in your county and state from this site, and sets up trunking TGID's & para's(this is a big help). It also has a neat virtual control panel that works your scanner from the keyboard., but the best part is that it logs all the information(freq & PL) and lets you see your scanner window in a much larger scale that you can actually see clearly. The logging is great when searching, but it is also handy for normal scanning. Often, I do not look up in time to see what agency was just talking, so I just look at the log.

You will also need to consider a USB cable . If you want to make life even easier, you can become paid subscriber to this site to get the automatic down loads, but this is also very reasonable($7.5 for 3 months). This can save you countless hours of programming and frustration. As for future digital in your area, scanners continue to improve significantly each year, and you are better off waiting until there is digital in your area.
 
Last edited:

Ensnared

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 24, 2004
Messages
3,040
Location
Waco, Texas
Scanner Brands

Hello all. I'm as wet behind the ears as it gets when it comes to radio and scanning, and I'm hoping to break into the hobby.

Here's what I know about electronics in general: All electronic devices, when being manufactured, are filled with "Magic Smoke" and if you do something wrong and the "Magic Smoke" comes out of your expensive little electronic device, it will never work again.

Okay, that being said I'm looking to purchase my first scanner radio. I primarily want to listen to local law enforcement, EMS, fire and railroad, civilian aircraft and whatever else is going on in my little community.

I live in Chippewa county, Wisconsin. I don't think our local services have gone digital, but I might be mistaken.

I am eyeing up the Uniden Bearcat 346XT. It should track all local services and most importantly, it won't break the bank (meaning I won't have to sleep in the doghouse when my wife finds out I bought it).

Any feedback on this scanner? Keep in mind I'm just getting started, and I only need an entry level scanner with trunktracking. I'm pretty sure things around here are still analog. Thanks in advance, and cheers!!
I would agree that it is necessary to review the threads specific to your state; however, I would also encourage to read about the pros and cons of the two main scanner manufacturers, GRE and Uniden.

I happen to own a GRE PSR 500. I would not ever consider buying Uniden products. But, I am not here to share my bias. Welcome to RR.
 

CoolCat

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 8, 2011
Messages
514
Location
781
I am eyeing up the Uniden Bearcat 346XT. It should track all local services and most importantly, it won't break the bank (meaning I won't have to sleep in the doghouse when my wife finds out I bought it).

Any feedback on this scanner? Keep in mind I'm just getting started, and I only need an entry level scanner with trunktracking. I'm pretty sure things around here are still analog. Thanks in advance, and cheers!!
Hi BH77 and welcome to RR :)

The 346XT is a great scanner and will not disappoint. While it is not a digital model, that doesn't automatically make it an entry level scanner, as it is [currently] Uniden's top of the line analog scanner. It has most of the high end features of it's big brother; the 396XT.

It has lots of memory space (up to 9000 channels) and uses Uniden's DMA memory architecture. DMA is easy to setup and use (although it does take some planning and tweaking to get it all set up the way you want it). It allows your systems and groups of channels to be as big or small as you need them to be, and quick keys allow them to be easily enabled/disabled with just a few button pushes (some with only a single button push). GRE's OOM memory architecture is nice as well, but it has some limitations and is not as flexible as DMA (there is virtually no OOM feature that cannot be duplicated in one form or another with a DMA scanner, but the same cannot be said about OOM ;))

It can be programmed entirely by hand if you wish to do so, but using software makes it much much faster and easier. Freescan is a great program that is full featured, easy to use, and FREE!. If you have a desktop computer, then chances are it has a serial port and you can use the factory serial cable that comes with the scanner. If you only have a laptop or an "all-in-one" PC, then you will need to purchase the USB-1 cable or use a serial-USB adapter with the factory cable.

Also worth noting is the size and quality of the unit. The 346XT is very small for a scanner; this is very nice for portability but it does come at the price of fewer buttons/knobs. For example, the volume/squelch/scroll knobs are all combined into a single knob (and volume is not it's default function; a very poor design choice IMO). Most front panel buttons have secondary functions (used by first pressing the FUNCTION modifier button on the side of the scanner). And last but not least; the physical build quality of Uniden's XT scanner lineup is very good. They have a very solid, sturdy feel to them (something that cannot be said as easily about GRE and RS models).

Whatever you decide to go with, good luck and happy scanning :)
 
Last edited:

N8IAA

Member
Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
6,703
Location
Fortunately, GA
Hello all. I'm as wet behind the ears as it gets when it comes to radio and scanning, and I'm hoping to break into the hobby.

Here's what I know about electronics in general: All electronic devices, when being manufactured, are filled with "Magic Smoke" and if you do something wrong and the "Magic Smoke" comes out of your expensive little electronic device, it will never work again.

Okay, that being said I'm looking to purchase my first scanner radio. I primarily want to listen to local law enforcement, EMS, fire and railroad, civilian aircraft and whatever else is going on in my little community.

I live in Chippewa county, Wisconsin. I don't think our local services have gone digital, but I might be mistaken.

I am eyeing up the Uniden Bearcat 346XT. It should track all local services and most importantly, it won't break the bank (meaning I won't have to sleep in the doghouse when my wife finds out I bought it).

Any feedback on this scanner? Keep in mind I'm just getting started, and I only need an entry level scanner with trunktracking. I'm pretty sure things around here are still analog. Thanks in advance, and cheers!!

I can understand your want for a trunktracking scanner, but the only system in your area is WISCOM, which is digital. You may want to rethink and get a digital. You may be able to get away with a conventional non-trunking scanner to start with. Just a thought.
HTH,
Larry
 

Rt169Radio

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Aug 24, 2011
Messages
2,786
Location
CT
A good starter handheld scanner radio would be the Uniden BC346XT.

Here is a link to a site where you can read a long lengthy info filled review about it and buy it from there to.

Uniden Bearcat BC346XT Police Scanner Radio

I have the BC346XT and its a very nice scanner.Also like some people already said,it would be a good idea to buy the Uniden usb cable and download freescan.Freescan will make programing your scanner easier.
 
Last edited:

Ensnared

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 24, 2004
Messages
3,040
Location
Waco, Texas
GRE Vs Uniden

Yes, before you plunk down serious change, you surely need to research. Since it appears I am the only GRE supporter in this thread, I will share some radios with you.

The nondigital Uniden scanner that someone recommended as a hand held for you was indeed a good radio; however, be advised, GRE makes a great nondigital scanner:

PSR-300 - The RadioReference Wiki

But, here is a comparison chart that you may have overlooked if you decide to go digital:

Digital Scanner Comparison Chart - The RadioReference Wiki

Finally, here is my preferred choice:

PSR-500 - The RadioReference Wiki

Generally speaking, Uniden radios are a bit more expensive than GRE.

Well, you have a lot to read.

DWW
 

CoolCat

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 8, 2011
Messages
514
Location
781
Generally speaking, Uniden radios are a bit more expensive than GRE.
While I would agree that statement is generally true regarding the initial purchase price of just the scanner itself; when you add the extra cost of programming software, batteries, (and programming cable not included with RS branded models), competing 'same-class' scanner models often cost about the same in the end. ;)
 

Ensnared

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 24, 2004
Messages
3,040
Location
Waco, Texas
GRE, not RS

While I would agree that statement is generally true regarding the initial purchase price of just the scanner itself; when you add the extra cost of programming software, batteries, (and programming cable not included with RS branded models), competing 'same-class' scanner models often cost about the same in the end. ;)
This is one reason I did not purchase RS. When I opened my GRE PSR 500, I found: a) scanner; b) USB control cable; c) antenna; and d) wall charger.

If I am not mistaken, RS does not incluce all of these with the Pro-106.

With respect to batteries, I only use one brand:

Amazon.com: Sanyo NEW 1500 eneloop 4 Pack AA Ni-MH Pre-Charged Rechargeable Batteries with Charger: Electronics
 

Friendly

Member
Joined
Oct 24, 2006
Messages
25
Location
Allentown
I just wanted to say THANK YOU FOR A GREAT SERVICE.

I just wanted to say THANK YOU FOR A GREAT SERVICE!

We live in Allentown PA. we were broken into recently it took the POLICE and hour and 20 minutes to get some one here. The officers explained EVEN THOUGH the city has just opened a NEW POLICE station only a block and half from us ALLENTOWN NOW HAS MORE CRIME AND CRIMINALS THEN POLICE TO RESPOND.

We were really troubled by the break in since I went to the OPEN HOUSE of the new police station I now call "FORT APACHE" and was told our neighborhood would be like living in Mayberry on the Andy Griffin show as Sheriff Taylor.

Clearly that has not happened there was a stabbing the next week on the same corner where the police station stands now. A business was broken into half block from the FORT APACHE the following week.

Next to unemployment our NATIONS BIGGEST PROBLEM IS CRIME. We now have had THREE GANGS RELOCATE TO ALLENTOWN FROM NY AND NJ. THERE IS TERRIBLE WARING GOING ON BECAUSE THEY ARE ETHNIC GANGS WHO HATE EACH OTHER AND EVERYONE ELSE WHO BREATHES.

It is no longer safe to go out after dark unless it is to walk to your car and drive to your designation.

OUR ALLENTOWN SCHOOLS OPENED UP last week. A child was arrested and booked for assault in one of our JR. Highs this week, that is 6 th to 8 th graders. The first shift of police had to stay over to cover the second shift at one of our cities' high schools. There are fights there nightly and last year one student slashed two others with a razor blade.

Now we can see how a home break in would be the last thing to answer, of course now we see CALLING POLICE FOR ANYTHING WILL BE USELESS EVEN WITH FORT APACHE, there is no one to respond.
 

trkntrlrman

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Aug 28, 2008
Messages
179
Location
Desert Hot Springs, CA.
Before you buy the scanner

First off if things are that bad in your area, I think i would be buying a 40 cal semi Auto instead of a scanner. Protect that family guy, if the police can't, you have to.Tossing a scanner at them won't help. After you've Eliminated the bad guys you can Listen to the Cops talk about it on the scanner....
Good luck.... and moving might be a good Idea too....
 

CoolCat

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 8, 2011
Messages
514
Location
781
I just wanted to say THANK YOU FOR A GREAT SERVICE!

We live in Allentown PA. we were broken into recently it took the POLICE and hour and 20 minutes to get some one here. The officers explained EVEN THOUGH the city has just opened a NEW POLICE station only a block and half from us ALLENTOWN NOW HAS MORE CRIME AND CRIMINALS THEN POLICE TO RESPOND.

We were really troubled by the break in since I went to the OPEN HOUSE of the new police station I now call "FORT APACHE" and was told our neighborhood would be like living in Mayberry on the Andy Griffin show as Sheriff Taylor.

Clearly that has not happened there was a stabbing the next week on the same corner where the police station stands now. A business was broken into half block from the FORT APACHE the following week.

Next to unemployment our NATIONS BIGGEST PROBLEM IS CRIME. We now have had THREE GANGS RELOCATE TO ALLENTOWN FROM NY AND NJ. THERE IS TERRIBLE WARING GOING ON BECAUSE THEY ARE ETHNIC GANGS WHO HATE EACH OTHER AND EVERYONE ELSE WHO BREATHES.

It is no longer safe to go out after dark unless it is to walk to your car and drive to your designation.

OUR ALLENTOWN SCHOOLS OPENED UP last week. A child was arrested and booked for assault in one of our JR. Highs this week, that is 6 th to 8 th graders. The first shift of police had to stay over to cover the second shift at one of our cities' high schools. There are fights there nightly and last year one student slashed two others with a razor blade.

Now we can see how a home break in would be the last thing to answer, of course now we see CALLING POLICE FOR ANYTHING WILL BE USELESS EVEN WITH FORT APACHE, there is no one to respond.
While I'm sorry to hear about the crime in your neighborhood; what on earth does anything you just posted have to do with this thread? :confused:
 

KC4RAF

Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2006
Messages
1,594
Location
Davenport,Fl.- home to me and the gators and the s
+ 1 with your post Chris.

Wondering why his "THANK YOU..." post in this thread?

Anyway;
I have to agree with Ensnared about the GRE scanners and what they come with. RS charges for the extras that are standard with GRE. Also, GRE has software that doesn't cost you anything. Free!
(and the thing about the RS scanners, they ARE GRE. some of them anyway.)
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top