436 vs SDS100

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xzebra007

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Looking to purchase a 436 or a SDS100 and am torn a bit between the two.

I know the SDS is much newer and has some features that the 436 doesn't, but do I really need to spend the difference.

I would be mostly monitoring Kent County MI which is simulcast, however I hear mixed results with performance with these two scanners. Some say the 436 works good, while others do not like the performance compared to the SDS100. I have also heard some say the SDS100 is only a bit better.

Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
 

RadioSc

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If you love a color display get the SDS100. Also the SDS is Superior in the trunking bands. Not so much on the analog side. On mine if site trunking right you can hear traffic 60+ miles away. The Remtronix antenna is a beast
 

hiegtx

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There are four MPSCS sites in Kent County.
Here's the map for the Kent County simulcast's tower sites:
84792

The other sites, Cedar Springs, Ada, and Grand Rapids, are not.

Simulcast Distortion is extremely location specific. If you are within a quarter mile of one of the sites, then that strong of a signal might be enough to override distortion from the out of synch sites farther away. In some cases, your location might be in a 'sweet spot', where problematic signals are being shielded by terrain (hills) or a cluster of tall buildings. Also at times, your reception can change dramatically by moving your scanner a few feet in one direction or the other inside your house. A directional antenna, aimed carefully at a specific site, can help for montoring from a fixed location, such as your home. But that's not a practical solution when you are not at home, either in your vehicle, or a different spot in the area.

If you need the Kent County site, then unless you are lucky, simulcast may all but ruin reception for you on a 436HP. In those cases, the SDS100 would be a better choice. The Ada, Cedar Springs, and Grand Rapids may do well on either scanner.

The SDS100 was designed to handle simulcast. In a simulcast area, the 436HP may disappoint you. I have not seen a significant difference between the SDS100 & 436HP (I have two of those). Using the same antenna (with a multicoupler), there is no noticeable difference on what I can hear on the SDS versus the 436. For the SDS100, in many cases, performance can be improved by tweaking the filter settings for specific sites (trunked systems) or departments (conventional systems).

You might be able to get a more location specific answer if you have your post moved to the Michigan forum. To do that, do not create a new thread. Instead, click on the Report in the lower left corner of one of your posts, and request that a moderator move your thread to the state forum. Someone in the area would be more likely to see it there.
 

gcopter1

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Be on the safe side. If your intention is to listen to trunked P25 systems, in all likelyhood, they are going to be plagued with simulcast problems. Skip the headaches and get yourself and SDS scanner. If you feel skimpy, get yourself an HP series scanner and then, find yourself here in posting in limbo, looking for an answer to your scanning woes. It may (or not) work for you). But, as I said, if you feel skimpy...

Getting an SDS 100/200 right off the bat, would save you a lot of steps troubleshooting here on the forums.

SDS series scanners, are not, trouble free. They do have a lot of settings, but, it's mostly a fine tuning thing, much more easily handled than a scanner that won't work in your location.

FWIW, I've been a scanner user since 1982. My main interest in scanning has been Public Safety. I've seen all iterations of trunking, and on each one of them, the move has been to digital and P25. From the Motorola SmartNet to EDACS and P25 to now the Simulcast stuff.

I've even bought Harris gear to monitor P25.

Out of the box, the SDS series, is the best answer.
 

xzebra007

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Joined
Apr 8, 2020
Messages
26
There are four MPSCS sites in Kent County.
Here's the map for the Kent County simulcast's tower sites:
View attachment 84792

The other sites, Cedar Springs, Ada, and Grand Rapids, are not.

Simulcast Distortion is extremely location specific. If you are within a quarter mile of one of the sites, then that strong of a signal might be enough to override distortion from the out of synch sites farther away. In some cases, your location might be in a 'sweet spot', where problematic signals are being shielded by terrain (hills) or a cluster of tall buildings. Also at times, your reception can change dramatically by moving your scanner a few feet in one direction or the other inside your house. A directional antenna, aimed carefully at a specific site, can help for montoring from a fixed location, such as your home. But that's not a practical solution when you are not at home, either in your vehicle, or a different spot in the area.

If you need the Kent County site, then unless you are lucky, simulcast may all but ruin reception for you on a 436HP. In those cases, the SDS100 would be a better choice. The Ada, Cedar Springs, and Grand Rapids may do well on either scanner.

The SDS100 was designed to handle simulcast. In a simulcast area, the 436HP may disappoint you. I have not seen a significant difference between the SDS100 & 436HP (I have two of those). Using the same antenna (with a multicoupler), there is no noticeable difference on what I can hear on the SDS versus the 436. For the SDS100, in many cases, performance can be improved by tweaking the filter settings for specific sites (trunked systems) or departments (conventional systems).

You might be able to get a more location specific answer if you have your post moved to the Michigan forum. To do that, do not create a new thread. Instead, click on the Report in the lower left corner of one of your posts, and request that a moderator move your thread to the state forum. Someone in the area would be more likely to see it there.
Thank you so much for all the time and effort behind your help and responding to this post. I greatly appreciate it my friend.
 

xzebra007

Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2020
Messages
26
Be on the safe side. If your intention is to listen to trunked P25 systems, in all likelyhood, they are going to be plagued with simulcast problems. Skip the headaches and get yourself and SDS scanner. If you feel skimpy, get yourself an HP series scanner and then, find yourself here in posting in limbo, looking for an answer to your scanning woes. It may (or not) work for you). But, as I said, if you feel skimpy...

Getting an SDS 100/200 right off the bat, would save you a lot of steps troubleshooting here on the forums.

SDS series scanners, are not, trouble free. They do have a lot of settings, but, it's mostly a fine tuning thing, much more easily handled than a scanner then won't work in your location.

FWIW, I've been a scanner user since 1982. My main interest in scanning has been Public Safety. I've seen all iterations of trunking, and on each one of them, the move has been to digital and P25. From the Motorola SmartNet to EDACS and P25 to now the Simulcast stuff.

I've even bought Harris gear to monitor P25.

Out of the box, the SDS series, is the best answer.
Thanks - Kind of leaning that way, but the price difference is quite a bit.
Might have to try and suck it up. I remember my first was merely $100 and to spend $700 seems quite high.
 

xzebra007

Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2020
Messages
26
Simulcast Distortion is extremely location specific. If you are within a quarter mile of one of the sites, then that strong of a signal might be enough to override distortion from the out of synch sites farther away. In some cases, your location might be in a 'sweet spot', where problematic signals are being shielded by terrain (hills) or a cluster of tall buildings. Also at times, your reception can change dramatically by moving your scanner a few feet in one direction or the other inside your house. A directional antenna, aimed carefully at a specific site, can help for montoring from a fixed location, such as your home. But that's not a practical solution when you are not at home, either in your vehicle, or a different spot in the area.

If you need the Kent County site, then unless you are lucky, simulcast may all but ruin reception for you on a 436HP. In those cases, the SDS100 would be a better choice. The Ada, Cedar Springs, and Grand Rapids may do well on either scanner.

The SDS100 was designed to handle simulcast. In a simulcast area, the 436HP may disappoint you. I have not seen a significant difference between the SDS100 & 436HP (I have two of those). Using the same antenna (with a multicoupler), there is no noticeable difference on what I can hear on the SDS versus the 436. For the SDS100, in many cases, performance can be improved by tweaking the filter settings for specific sites (trunked systems) or departments (conventional systems).

You might be able to get a more location specific answer if you have your post moved to the Michigan forum. To do that, do not create a new thread. Instead, click on the Report in the lower left corner of one of your posts, and request that a moderator move your thread to the state forum. Someone in the area would be more likely to see it there.
Any suggestions living near Rockford per the details approve?
 
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