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Wisconsin Radio Discussion Forum Forum for discussing Radio Information in the State of Wisconsin.

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 10-24-2010, 3:27 PM
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Default Options for Replacing an Obsolete Scanner

Hello,

I have a now-virtually-useless RS Pro-2053, or so my limitied knowledge leads me to believe (since rebanding happened earlier this month).

I'm looking for a little guidance in selecting a replacement. I'm not very well versed in the technical details of scanning and my primary use is to monitor poilice/fire/EMS for entertainment.

With that in mind, I'd like something that will not only work (post-rebanding), but something that will be fairly straight-forward to get working in this new envoronment.

Thanks!
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Old 10-24-2010, 10:43 PM
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I don't think there are a whole lot of digital systems in Wisconsin right now, but that appears to be the direction that things are headed. I know it bumps up the cost to around $500, but its better than spending $300 only to have your favorite system migrate to digital when 2013 comes around.

I don't have one, but it sounds like the new Uniden Home Patrol models are doing reasonably well. They are for those who are not "radio geeks".

Generally "re-banding" is merely a downward shift in frequencies (usually a subtraction of 15 in the frequency). So if your scanner was able to listen to the system before, you should be able to listen to it after re-entering the re-banded frequencies. However, if they went from an analog system to a digital system, then you're out of luck.

Don't feel bad - I just pitched a scanner out today that is obsolete for my area these days (plus the display was shot).

Last edited by ofd8001; 10-24-2010 at 10:49 PM..
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Old 10-25-2010, 2:28 AM
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Specifically what system or county are you looking to hear traffic in?

Some scanners can't support the true rebanding, I believe due to being certified before rebanding was on the horizon and blocks for cellular bands. That said a Pro-163/164 does support rebanding and is currently sufficient enough for me to listen to probably 90% of the public safety systems in the sate right now; and maintain a familiar ease of programing. You can also compare this to a BCT15 if you're interested in trying out the Uniden side. There are quite a few agencies planning their own digital systems, or are planning to move to the state WISCOM system that will be digital traffic, but if the system you're trying to hear now just made it's shift odds are it should be set for a while, and if they're transmissions are analog there is a good chance of them staying that way. Without knowing exactly which systems you're looking for, with your needs I think either of the models listed above would be a simple upgrade that in all likely hood will be sufficient coverage that you'll hear what you want for the next few years. A scanner capable of receiving P25 transmissions is more of a long term investment, many agencies are deciding to move that direction, and there will certainly be traffic there in the coming years to listen to, you may not need it, you may want it you may not. Expect to see the state agencies and some counties and some cities move to the P25 digital voice over the course of the next few years.

Do some searching for the agencies not only in the WI forum but the news section as well, take a look at what those you want to hear are planning to do and you'll have a better idea of what you need now, and what you may want down the road and then decide what's right for you.
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Old 10-25-2010, 11:02 AM
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I'm in Waukesha County and am interested in the county-wide system:

System Name Waukesha County Trunked Radio System
System Type Motorola Type II
System ID 7404h


I believe it is analog and trunking.
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Old 10-25-2010, 2:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevenjamesfrank View Post
I'm in Waukesha County and am interested in the county-wide system:

System Name Waukesha County Trunked Radio System
System Type Motorola Type II
System ID 7404h


I believe it is analog and trunking.
The Waukesha County system is Type II trunking, rebanded. Per some previous conversations with radio services personnel, it sounds like the county will move toward a digital solution in 2012/2013. Considering how long it took to get the rebanding done...well..... Draw your own conclusions. Keep in mind that simply taking the new frequencies is not all that is required to be able to monitor many rebanded systems as the trunking maps actually change for many of the systems...

If you want to take the gamble that the county's selection of a digital trunking solution will be standard P25, then you can shell out the extra cash to go digital now... However, if you know anyone in Milwaukee that made that decision a few years ago and now can't monitor OpenSky in the city, you might decide differently. I think my bet is that it will be Motorola P25, but nothing is certain I suppose...

I currently monitor the system using a varierty of scanners from Uniden, RS, and now GRE. My favorite handheld is the Uniden 346XT as I find it a breeze to operate. I just got a GRE PSR-600 and it's a toss up between that and my BCT15/15X's. I like the programming methodology of the Unidens better but the GRE has some nice features...

Since you're in Waukesha County, if you want to see/hear/touch some different ones, PM me as I'm in the county as well... I'm happy to help you out.
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Old 10-26-2010, 9:45 PM
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keep in mind waukesha county trs is suppose to go digital by 2014.
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Old 10-27-2010, 6:01 PM
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Any software defined scanners on the market or in the works?
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Old 11-25-2010, 7:54 PM
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Scanners like the PRO 197, PRO 106, or the Grecom versons are probably going to be your best bet when going to digital. I do not know the Uniden side of what they can do. I have a RS PRO 106 and 197, for listening to all Fire EMS and Police in Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Waukesha, and Washington. Ozaukee is on an EDACS, Milwaukee and Waukesha are both rebanded Motorolla Type 2, and Washington is starting to head towards a P25 digital from conventional, but i have no clue how fast P25 is taking effect. However,r i am able to recieve everything public safety related, I dont have any reason to think otherwise, for every county. Regardless of the brand, digital scanners are a great investment, even in the early stages of digitalization. You dont really lose any ability form switching from an old scanner
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Last edited by ToDaMax; 11-25-2010 at 7:58 PM..
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