RadioReference on Facebook   RadioReference on Twitter   RadioReference Blog
 

Go Back   The RadioReference.com Forums > U.S. Regional Radio Discussion Forums > North Carolina Radio Discussion Forum


North Carolina Radio Discussion Forum - Forum for discussing Radio Information in the State of North Carolina.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 02-17-2013, 10:31 AM
KE4ZNR's Avatar
KE4ZNR@radioreference.com
  Shack Photos
Shack photos
RadioReference Database Admininstrator
Database Admin
Amateur Radio Operator
Amateur Radio
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 6,651
Default Which scanner to buy for Monitoring in NC?

Need help on deciding which scanner to buy for Monitoring in NC?
Forum Member Drafin crafted the response below which I think answers the question perfectly.
Just one additional note: Most "large" metropolitan areas in NC (Charlotte/Mecklenburg, Greensboro/Guilford, Triangle/Wake/Durham, New Hanover) either already use systems that have digital voice transmissions or have plans to migrate up to digital voice systems.
Which means that if you wish to monitor public safety in these areas in NC you need to seriously consider a digital voice capable scanner.

I am going to sticky this for awhile as this question seems to get asked a lot here in the NC forum.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drafin View Post
Most people are a bit reluctant to suggest one scanner over another. It's kind of the Pepsi or Coke, Ford or Chevy type of argument. Most people will fall into one of two camps. The Uniden crowd and the Whistler/GRE/Radio Shack crowd.

The best thing to do is to ask people in your area what they are using and how it performs. As a GENERAL BROAD STATEMENT (meaning this is no way an endorsement of one product or the other, a complete list, nor a recommendation of which to buy) you are looking at basically four main products. The GRE PSR 500/Whistler WS1040 handheld (or PSR 600/Whistler WS1065 for the mobile) and the Uniden BCD396XT handheld (or the BCD996XT mobile). These tend to be a little less user friendly but offer more options than the ones I am about to list. Radio Shack sells their own rebranded versions of the aforementioned GRE/Whistler products.

The more user friendly, but at the cost of overall options for the most part, would be the GRE PSR 800 (or the PSR 900 mobile version) and the "tweener" that is not really a mobile or a handheld but will function as both Uniden Home Patrol 1. These units from both manufacturers tend to be a little more plug and play. And as with my previous statement, Radio Shack sells their own rebranded versions of the aforementioned GRE products. The newer Uniden models incororate the Home Patrol 1 features into a true handheld (BCD436HP) or mobile unit (BCD536HP) while also incororating TDMA X2 technology as does the Whistler WS1080 and WS1095, and aforementioned PSR 800.

It should be mentioned that the GRE line has been discontinued. They are now sold by Whistler and the scanner seem nearly identical to their predecessors. Also there are new scanners on the horizon that will be digital capable from both Uniden and Whistler.


All of these are great scanners and I suggest that you research each model and it's particular features, strong points and weaknesses to determine your individual needs. Keep in mind that there is a lot of bias in the scanner world toward one manufacturer or the other (which I never really understood to be honest, but I'll leave that for another day) and sort through the hyperbole and get down to a few things:

1. I'd suggest narrowing down what you want to monitor. It seems you have a good grasp of that already.
2. Determine what are the features you "need" and the features you "want". There is a difference. Basically, in NC if anything you want to listen to is on the VIPER system you need a digital scanner.
3. Figure out what fits your budgetary requirements. What can you afford?
4. Read the forums here of the manufacturers you are interested in.
5. Speak to people in your area (here on the forums and in person if you can), to find out what they have, what they like about it, and what they dislike about it.
6. Read reviews of products from other places around the web to see what others are saying about the particular models you are interested in. Keep in mind though that someone that is not pleased with a product is much more likely to post about it than someone that is thrilled with a product. Realizing this up front will save you from the feeling that ALL of the scanners on the market suck... they don't.

Basically to sum up, I'm just advising you to be an informed consumer. The same thing could be applied to almost any product out there though. Hope this at least gives you a starting point.

Drafin
Marshall KE4ZNR
__________________
NC/SC Forum Moderator/Database Administrator
Frequently Asked Questions
Forum Rules & Guidelines

@KE4ZNR on Twitter

Last edited by KE4ZNR; 09-11-2014 at 12:11 PM.. Reason: updated info
Reply With Quote
Sponsored links
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 02-18-2014, 2:58 PM
w6cod's Avatar
Member
  Shack Photos
Shack photos
Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
Amateur Radio Operator
Amateur Radio
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Low Country SC
Posts: 5
Default

I have a Uniden 396xt here in ENC
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 09-11-2014, 10:18 AM
Member
  Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 658
Default

Ok I basically freshened up the old thing I posted about what scanner to buy to add the newer models. Not a total rewrite just added some more models and a bit more info:
--------------------------

Most people are a bit reluctant to suggest one scanner over another. It's kind of the Pepsi or Coke, Ford or Chevy type of argument. Most people will fall into one of two camps. The Uniden crowd and the Whistler/GRE/Radio Shack crowd.

The best thing to do is to ask people in your area what they are using and how it performs. As a GENERAL BROAD STATEMENT (meaning this is no way an endorsement of one product or the other, a complete list, nor a recommendation of which to buy) you are looking at basically four main products. The GRE PSR 500/Whistler WS1040 handheld (or PSR 600/Whistler WS1065 for the mobile) and the Uniden BCD396XT handheld (or the BCD996XT mobile). These tend to be a little less user friendly but offer more options than the ones I am about to list. Radio Shack sells their own rebranded versions of the aforementioned GRE/Whistler products.

The more user friendly, but at the cost of overall options for the most part, would be the GRE PSR 800 (or the PSR 900 mobile version) and the "tweener" that is not really a mobile or a handheld but will function as both Uniden Home Patrol 1. These units from both manufacturers tend to be a little more plug and play. And as with my previous statement, Radio Shack sells their own rebranded versions of the aforementioned GRE products. The newer Uniden models incororate the Home Patrol 1 features into a true handheld (BCD436HP) or mobile unit (BCD536HP) while also incororating TDMA X2 technology as does the Whistler WS1080 and WS1095, and aforementioned PSR 800.

It should be mentioned that the GRE line has been discontinued. They are now sold by Whistler and the scanner seem nearly identical to their predecessors. Also there are new scanners on the horizon that will be digital capable from both Uniden and Whistler.


All of these are great scanners and I suggest that you research each model and it's particular features, strong points and weaknesses to determine your individual needs. Keep in mind that there is a lot of bias in the scanner world toward one manufacturer or the other (which I never really understood to be honest, but I'll leave that for another day) and sort through the hyperbole and get down to a few things:

1. I'd suggest narrowing down what you want to monitor. It seems you have a good grasp of that already.
2. Determine what are the features you "need" and the features you "want". There is a difference. Basically, in NC if anything you want to listen to is on the VIPER system you need a digital scanner.
3. Figure out what fits your budgetary requirements. What can you afford?
4. Read the forums here of the manufacturers you are interested in.
5. Speak to people in your area (here on the forums and in person if you can), to find out what they have, what they like about it, and what they dislike about it.
6. Read reviews of products from other places around the web to see what others are saying about the particular models you are interested in. Keep in mind though that someone that is not pleased with a product is much more likely to post about it than someone that is thrilled with a product. Realizing this up front will save you from the feeling that ALL of the scanners on the market suck... they don't.

Basically to sum up, I'm just advising you to be an informed consumer. The same thing could be applied to almost any product out there though. Hope this at least gives you a starting point.

Drafin
__________________
* PSR-500 * Pro-2014 * HomePatrol-1 * KA1103 * G2 Reporter
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 10-07-2014, 10:22 AM
Member
  Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Fayetteville,NC
Posts: 98
Default Scanner for NC

Currently i am using the Uniden 396xt and a 996xt , with Fayetteville moving to phase ll i just pulled the trigger on the Whistler1080
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 10-07-2014, 1:39 PM
NYRHKY94's Avatar
Member
  Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Brunswick County, NC
Posts: 1,305
Default

I will be moving to the Southport area next month and will be bringing along the following radios: BCD996XT, BCD536HP, PSR-500, Pro-197. Hope that grouping will cover what is needed in my area of Brunswick County. Assuming it's mostly VIPER stuff?

Thanks!
__________________
BCD536HP/BCD436HP/BCD325P2/BCD996XT/BCT15X/PSR-600/PSR-500/PRO-197
Reply With Quote
Sponsored links
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 10-07-2014, 2:10 PM
Member
  Amateur Radio Operator
Amateur Radio
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Bolivia, North Carolina
Posts: 27
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by NYRHKY94 View Post
I will be moving to the Southport area next month and will be bringing along the following radios: BCD996XT, BCD536HP, PSR-500, Pro-197. Hope that grouping will cover what is needed in my area of Brunswick County. Assuming it's mostly VIPER stuff?

Thanks!
Hey NYRHKY9,
Welcome to the Southport area. I think you will have it well covered. You will find pretty much everything is on VIPER, however I would program some of the old frequencies as they are still used by some for talk around.

Ron
Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 10-07-2014, 7:27 PM
NYRHKY94's Avatar
Member
  Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Brunswick County, NC
Posts: 1,305
Default

Thanks Ron! Appreciate the welcome and advice!
__________________
BCD536HP/BCD436HP/BCD325P2/BCD996XT/BCT15X/PSR-600/PSR-500/PRO-197
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 02-28-2015, 7:48 AM
FatherTesmer's Avatar
Member
   
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Shelby, North Carolina
Posts: 4
Default

Thank you for sharing the information. I did not know what to buy for broadcasting on Broadcastify - Live Police, Fire, EMS, Aircraft, and Rail Audio Feeds . I sent a message for assistance. The result was the purchase of a BCD396XT for me, and a BCD996XT for broadcasting. I did not know there was information on here about just such a question. With that said, I am not sure if I should post this here or somewhere else, but it goes hand in hand.

Assuming someone bought one of the aforementioned scanners. Should you upgrade the antenna for use in NC? What is the best type of antenna for NC?

Last edited by FatherTesmer; 02-28-2015 at 7:50 AM.. Reason: Corrected model number
Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 04-06-2015, 2:28 PM
Member
   
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Whiteville, North Carolina(Columbus County)
Posts: 68
Default

I'm in Columbus County, I'm hoping the Uniden BCD436HP will work. I'm going to start looking for some of the others listed. Thanks for making this a sticky and the suggestions as well.
Reply With Quote
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 04-06-2015, 6:07 PM
Member
  Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Fayetteville,NC
Posts: 98
Default Columbus County

I may be wrong , but I thought that Columbus County is encrypted .
Reply With Quote
  #11 (permalink)  
Old 04-06-2015, 6:34 PM
Member
   
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Whiteville, North Carolina(Columbus County)
Posts: 68
Default

It probably is, I don't know. It would make perfect sense that one of the most broke and poorly health rated counties in the state would spend the extra cash for that.
Reply With Quote
  #12 (permalink)  
Old 04-06-2015, 8:49 PM
Squad101's Avatar
Member
   
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Passaic County,NJ Wake County,NC
Posts: 85
Default Columbus County

Quote:
Originally Posted by rtsims View Post
I may be wrong , but I thought that Columbus County is encrypted .
Columbus County is not encrypted, they use a NXDN Nexedge system and no scanner currently manufactured can decode it. Columbus County Public Safety Trunking System, Whiteville, North Carolina - Scanner Frequencies
__________________
My Radios: Uniden BCD436HP, Motorola XTS-3000 Mod 3(Sold), GRE PSR-500, Uniden BCT-8, Uniden BCD996T (Sold),Uniden BCD396T(Sold)
Reply With Quote
  #13 (permalink)  
Old 04-06-2015, 9:15 PM
Member
   
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Whiteville, North Carolina(Columbus County)
Posts: 68
Default

Hmm, nice to know, thanks. I guess it's really important to keep the public from knowing about all the theft and home invasion going on.

Least I won't waste my money and get disappointed.
Reply With Quote
  #14 (permalink)  
Old 07-11-2015, 11:50 AM
Member
   
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 5
Default

What scanner are any of you folks using who are in Cabarrus County? I am planning to buy a new scanner but would like some advice and wonder if you are pleased with what you are using. Thank you.
Reply With Quote
  #15 (permalink)  
Old 07-11-2015, 11:52 AM
Member
  Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Fayetteville,NC
Posts: 98
Default

look at the Radioshack Pro668
Reply With Quote
  #16 (permalink)  
Old 11-08-2015, 8:33 PM
Member
   
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Nc
Posts: 1
Exclamation NC home patrol viper p25

I think the home patrol two is the best scanner on the market for north Carolina scanning for viper p25
Reply With Quote
  #17 (permalink)  
Old 11-29-2015, 8:46 AM
Was: Trucker_Clodhopper/Southern_Thunder
   
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 467
Default

homepatrolcc, enlighten me if you would as to what brought you to this conclusion?
Reply With Quote
  #18 (permalink)  
Old 11-29-2015, 12:17 PM
Member
  Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 658
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by homepatrolcc View Post
I think the home patrol two is the best scanner on the market for north Carolina scanning for viper p25
I'd refer you to the original post Dump_Trucker in this thread.

I don't believe there is one "best" scanner as homepatrolcc has proclaimed. I own both a Homepatrol1 and and a GRE PSR 500 and for me, at my particular location, with my particular setup the GRE outperforms the HP1 on VIPER.

As I said when I first wrote the post that started this thread, different conditions will produce different results for different people. It's almost a Pepsi vs. Coke argument, people have their biases and I figure some are even paid by the respective manufacturers to push products here on the forums.

I'd say that any digital scanner you purchase will be adequate to receive what you are wanting to receive as long as you purchase a modern digiital trunking scanner. You should be able to get a Uniden HP1, HP2, BCD436HP, BCD536HP,BCD396XT, or BCD996XT, or a Whistler WS1040, WS1065, WS1080, or WS1095 and be just fine for what you want to do with it for western NC.

Draf
__________________
* PSR-500 * Pro-2014 * HomePatrol-1 * KA1103 * G2 Reporter
Reply With Quote
  #19 (permalink)  
Old 11-29-2015, 12:35 PM
Was: Trucker_Clodhopper/Southern_Thunder
   
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 467
Default

Thank you Sir..
Reply With Quote
  #20 (permalink)  
Old 11-29-2015, 1:35 PM
Member
  Premium Subscriber
Premium Subscriber
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 658
Default

You are welcome my friend. I would also say that in my post earlier today I forgot to mention the Radio Shack Pro651, Pro652, among others. You just need to make sure you get a digital capable scanner.

Draf
__________________
* PSR-500 * Pro-2014 * HomePatrol-1 * KA1103 * G2 Reporter
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
sticky

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:53 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
All information here is Copyright 2012 by RadioReference.com LLC and Lindsay C. Blanton III.Ad Management by RedTyger
Copyright 2015 by RadioReference.com LLC Privacy Policy  |  Terms and Conditions