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TYT or Tytera MD380 VHF version as scanner

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fluke281

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#1
The VHF version of this popular radio is not so commonly used since most of the VHF amateur DMR repeaters are in the Northeast US and the UK.Many public service frequencies have converted to DMR, however. I bought one of these radios to use as a portable scanner for public safety VHF DMR services since digital scanners are so expensive. There is one significant difference between this model and the UHF model:
transmit must be enabled to hear anything DMR. Uncheck the "Rx only" box for each channel. The repeater engineer informed me of this undocumented difference. For transmit, you can use low power and a "green Dot" frequency of 154.60 in case you accidentally press the transmit button.
 

buddrousa

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#2
If you are asking then yes it will work but has limitations if you are using FACTORY FIRMWARE.
1. All Frequencies must be known and entered 2 times as slot 1 and slot 2.
2. All Frequencies color code must be known and entered for each Frequency.
3. All Talk Groups must be known and entered for each Frequency Slot 1 and Slot 2.
4. It scans only does not do tier 3 trunking but will scan and hear all traffic in a scanning order.
5. Will not search for Color Code, Slots, or Talk Groups with out using the Hacked Firmware.
 
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#3
To add to buddrousa's comments:
6. Max channels you can add to a scanlist is 32. You can scan 1 list at a time. So in reality you'll get 16 frequencies.
7. The MD380 scans slower than a scanner.
8. Even with the hacked firmware it will not show you a new found TGID.

With all that said it does work decent as a scanner. I've never heard that you can't use RX only on the VHF model. I don't have one though.
 

buddrousa

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#4
I have 2 UHF and 2 VHF and have noticed this on the VHF so I set both the UHF and VHF to dummy frequencies
 

fluke281

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#7
Tytera VHF DMR

Thanks for all of the help. Actually, I tried many versions of firmware and the only hacked version that would install was from WN6AV with the ham database included. That didn't solve the receiving issue even in promiscuous mode. A friend of mine had the same issue with a VHF radio from a different vendor and, of course, we both had older firmware versions installed. I finally found the solution: the latest version of Tytera firmware from their site:

http://www.tyt888.com/?mod=download

allows me to check "Rx only" and hear all DMR repeaters. It is version D13.14 from November. I have not seen this firmware anywhere else and the brief document in the zipped folder doesn't mention the Rx only problem.
 
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#8
I have in mind to buy a MD380 to scan DMR frequencies where i live
Do you recommend me buy the MD380 to use as scanner?
how was your experience doing this with the MD280?
 
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