• 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.

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    https://forums.radioreference.com/rants/224104-official-thread-live-audio-feeds-scanners-wait-encryption.html

New guy in Washington County, Oregon with a scanner

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Oregon
#1
Afternoon,
I've been enjoying this site for about a year after getting back in ham radios with my oldest daughter.

Then of course I kept on going, and I'm getting into the scanner world. It's been a long time since I've worked with either tool!

My question is what unit I can use to get started again in the world of scanning. I know the Measure passed this year in WashCo, and the system was updated.

Looks like it's analog, true?

I was trying not to break the bank with a startup scanner to scan local police/fire/EMS, etc...

That Uniden HomePatrol looks amazing...but pricey.

I also found an older Uniden BR330T Trunktracker III, which is more in my ballpark.

Will this work for my area, and my needs to scan local Public Safety?

And is it a bear to program?

Thanks ya'll! Looking foward to gettingback into the hobby, and excited that my daughters are interested as well. I'd like to get something that, well....works ;)
Andyroo
 
Joined
Apr 14, 2012
Messages
26
Location
Lincoln City, OR
#2
Hello Andy.

Although I'm not in a position to offer much advice specific to your part of Oregon, I believe you're lucky to be near what I believe are several pretty busy areas in terms of public safety comms to listen to. You could start simple with most any narrow-band capable scanner to get a feel for what you can copy by intercept and then do more research while getting a better idea of which direction works best for you.

Much of what I listen to here on the coast is conventional VHF narrow-band for public safety but I cheat a bit and listen with a TK-790H that doubles as my mobile station for 2 meters as a ham.

What about scanning years ago did you find most interesting? Back in the 70's I was using rockbound scanners to listen mainly to hams running RTTY over VHF repeaters before I got my ham ticket in the 80's. These days for me its the practical necessity of knowing about road wrecks in advance so I can route around them getting to and from work and occasional rag chewing when on longer drives.

73,
Phil KB6NZV

Afternoon,
I've been enjoying this site for about a year after getting back in ham radios with my oldest daughter.

Then of course I kept on going, and I'm getting into the scanner world. It's been a long time since I've worked with either tool!

My question is what unit I can use to get started again in the world of scanning. I know the Measure passed this year in WashCo, and the system was updated.

Looks like it's analog, true?

I was trying not to break the bank with a startup scanner to scan local police/fire/EMS, etc...

That Uniden HomePatrol looks amazing...but pricey.

I also found an older Uniden BR330T Trunktracker III, which is more in my ballpark.

Will this work for my area, and my needs to scan local Public Safety?

And is it a bear to program?

Thanks ya'll! Looking foward to gettingback into the hobby, and excited that my daughters are interested as well. I'd like to get something that, well....works ;)
Andyroo
 

PaulNDaOC

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Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 8, 2009
Messages
484
Location
Orange County,Ca
#3
In the short term any old Trunk Tracker will work as WCCCA is still on analog, but they are upgrading to a Motorola P25 Phase II system in the not too distant future as is the rest of the region so an upgrade will be needed at some .point.

The HomePatrol- II model will work on P25 Phase2,,TDMA, as will some others.

Portland and Clark County will soon be Phase II also.

73's
 
Joined
Apr 2, 2010
Messages
60
Location
Beaverton, OR
#4
PaulNDaOC is correct about the current Washington County Consolidated Communications Agency (WCCCA) Motorola Type II analog setup as well as the upcoming P25 Phase II switch over in the future. My guess is that WCCCA won't switch over to the P25 system for two to three years.

In addition, you may find it handy and interesting to be able to receive agencies covering the areas adjacent to Washington County, especially Portland/Multnomah County (under the Bureau of Emergency Communications, or BOEC), Clark County, Oregon State Police (OSP), and Washington State Patrol. Some of these agencies are in the process or have already transitioned to P25. In addition, the Oregon State Radio Project (OSRP) has a P25 Phase II system on the air with some OSP traffic on it. Therefore to minimize the chance of your scanner becoming obsolete, I believe it would be wise to purchase one with P25 Phase II capability.

Scanner-wise, the HomePatrol 2 is expensive as it has many of Uniden's flagship features. There are other less-expensive P25 Phase II-capable scanners available from Uniden and Whistler. I have a Uniden BCD325P2 which was my lower-cost handheld choice. While it does have P25PII capability, it does have some shortcomings including what I suspect is shorter battery life from running on two AA cells. I also have a Uniden BCD996P2 which is a mobile scanner. Both of these are easily programmed using the free Freescan Windows-based utility.

I also have a Whistler TRX-1 which is Whistler's flagship handheld scanner, which has P25 Phase II capability. This was the first non-Uniden trunked scanner I have owned, and it's been an interesting experience. In my opinion the Whistler is significantly more complex to program and the user interface while monitoring is more cumbersome, but it has more esoteric capabilities and features than the Uniden, which may not be of interest to all scanner users.

Between Uniden and Whistler, for someone new to scanning, I recommend a Uniden which Freescan can program, like the BCD325P2 or the BCD996P2. P25 Phase II capability is a must at this point.

Good luck, and enjoy your new interest!
 
Joined
Jun 5, 2004
Messages
1,222
Location
PNW
#5
Not much I can add that hasn't already been covered, but welcome back to the hobby! :) That's great that your kids are interested, too!
 
Joined
Oct 6, 2016
Messages
3
Location
Oregon
#6
You guys are all fantastic! I really appreciate the advice, it will go a long way.

And alwayslistening....we are Beaverton neighbors, so your advice is right on the money! Thanks so much. I do look forward to the hobby. I am looking pretty hard at either the Home Patrol for ease factor, or the Uniden 325P2.

I'd love to find a used one out there...this hobby is looking to be up there with my guitar hobby!
 
Joined
Apr 2, 2010
Messages
60
Location
Beaverton, OR
#7
Andyroo0516: Message me if you end up with the '325P2 or '996P2. I have a Freescan template that will get you kick started.

Again, welcome back to the scanning hobby. It's an interesting time of transitions as agencies move to digital modes.
 
Joined
Oct 6, 2016
Messages
3
Location
Oregon
#8
Andyroo0516: Message me if you end up with the '325P2 or '996P2. I have a Freescan template that will get you kick started.

Again, welcome back to the scanning hobby. It's an interesting time of transitions as agencies move to digital modes.
I most certainly will. I'm looking very hard at the 325P2. This is digital, correct?

I'd like to stay a ahead of the curve and get something that will bridge the gap of the transition to digital. We all know about how much transitions stink ;)

Andrew
 
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