996xt Manual programming can be done by anyone

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fleef

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Hello- just a rant and a rave about programming a trunk tracking digital scanner

When I bought it I asked where can a person find instructions on how to program this for a beginner? Every answer "oh just use the software don't bother doing it by hand its too difficult" Well what I wanted was info on how to do it by hand-hence the request- although there are the software options I wanted to do it by hand for a reason

New Owner Issue: Perhaps the frustration with this product is that people are used to "baby style": tech that basically does all the work for us and are good to go right out of the box. Our brains aren't used to being consulted on anything more than clicking mouse to hit Next.

If Luddite such as myself could figure it how to manually program it anyone can. I got a little mixed up on TGIDs but was sorted thanks to UPman.

Dearth of Info on programming:

There does not seem to be any kind of how to youtube videos for manually programming 996xt that I can find. The ONLY how tos online was the Easier To Read manual Easier to Read BCD996XT Digital Scanner Manual and the info.uniden CategoryBCD996XT < UnidenMan4 < TWiki (quite good)



So what I did after being tired of hearing practically *nothing* except extremely limited "Service Search" options and wanting Full Use of this radio was to Sit Down with Scanner in front of computer with the page open to Easier To Read Manual went page by page and made myself program New Systems, new Sites and new Groups.- so with just READING THE MANUAL and Entering the Data into my Scanner it was a Piece Of Cake and maybe took me 10 minutes or so for one system (the Control Channels are the real time saver)

So far I have my local "Regional Wireless Coop P25 phase I" and TGIDs I like in here also our Sheriff's which use Motorola Smart net II which is analog and digital - I am still working on entering more New Systems tonight.



I was afraid to attempt manual input as it seemed much more complicated than it truly was. I am so pleased with this receiver it is like Christmas today for me. Just a great, great fun thing to have and I think a great investment of sorts. I like to collect different types of receivers and the scanner was my only "missing" type of receiver which was digital trunk tracking.

Also added edit here do not worry about "messing anything up" because you can always delete a System, and also have the scanner just go back to the Default Pre-programs by turning scanner OFF then, you need both hands here- press Numbers 2 and 9 AND the "Hold" button simultaneously while turning radio on (this takes gymnastics) The scanner will give you the option 'Restore Preprogram List? "Yes"=E/No="."', if you press 'E/Yes', the scanner reloads the preprogrammed systems- this will delete all programmed options youve put in!

I have not had to delete anything yet.

Manual Programming IS an option for digital scanners and it is NOT difficult nor very time consuming!
 
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phask

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But what you did requires reading the manual.

90% of the questions on here can be answered by just reading the manual.

I can also manually program everything I own. Some are so old and rarely used I nee to find the books first. BUT for most of my scanners, especially when it comes to trunked , I'll defer to a PC.
 

UPMan

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I believe that knowing how to manually program the scanner is an important skill for many users. That said, I would never willingly subject myself to completely programming the scanner by hand. While not difficult, it is quite tedious.

When I was involved in developing the PRO-96 (yes, I know it was a GRE-built RS scanner, but since I was Director of Product Development for RadioShack at the time, it was ok) I completely programmed all banks in the scanner for testing, all by hand. Took me about 10 hours, including the research involved.

Fast forward 2 weeks. Engineer calls and says they need to check something real quick on my sample...won't take but an hour. Fine, I go down and hand it to him. An hour later he brings it back. Everything erased. AAAAAaaaaagh!

Only took me 6 hours to program it the 2nd time.
:(
 

GB1952

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uniden

I believe that knowing how to manually program the scanner is an important skill for many users. That said, I would never willingly subject myself to completely programming the scanner by hand. While not difficult, it is quite tedious.

When I was involved in developing the PRO-96 (yes, I know it was a GRE-built RS scanner, but since I was Director of Product Development for RadioShack at the time, it was ok) I completely programmed all banks in the scanner for testing, all by hand. Took me about 10 hours, including the research involved.

Fast forward 2 weeks. Engineer calls and says they need to check something real quick on my sample...won't take but an hour. Fine, I go down and hand it to him. An hour later he brings it back. Everything erased. AAAAAaaaaagh!

Only took me 6 hours to program it the 2nd time.
:(
Thanks, I have done manual program on both the bcd-996t and xt for years, even having some local troopers stop by for program and folks that live near me.
 

sfd119

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I started to hand program my 996XT...once....and it lasted 10 minutes. I downloaded FreeScan and things were a lot better from there on out.
 

eaf1956

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Evansville, IN
I think it is kinda like writing a book. Sure you can use pen and paper but a word processor is so much easier.
 

ofd8001

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I agree with the notion that hand-programming is an essential skill is good to have. Some times there are simple things to add or change. It may take more time to get the scanner connected to a computer than it does to do "whatever" by hand.

That being said, in addition to the time saving involved, downloading the appropriate data into a computer program reduces the opportunity for data entry errors.
 

bama9999

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I believe that knowing how to manually program the scanner is an important skill for many users. That said, I would never willingly subject myself to completely programming the scanner by hand. While not difficult, it is quite tedious.

When I was involved in developing the PRO-96 (yes, I know it was a GRE-built RS scanner, but since I was Director of Product Development for RadioShack at the time, it was ok) I completely programmed all banks in the scanner for testing, all by hand. Took me about 10 hours, including the research involved.

Fast forward 2 weeks. Engineer calls and says they need to check something real quick on my sample...won't take but an hour. Fine, I go down and hand it to him. An hour later he brings it back. Everything erased. AAAAAaaaaagh!

Only took me 6 hours to program it the 2nd time.
:(
Paul's first paragraph sums it up perfectly for me. While I do know how to program my radios by hand, which is a great thing for changes out in the field, I'd much rather use software when it is an option. Some trunked systems are so large that programming everything like TGID's, Alpha-tags, sites, etc... that it would be a huge pain to do it all by hand. However, I think everyone should learn to do it by hand for those times when you're not at the computer and need to make additions or changes.
 

scanman1958

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fleef

Great job on your work by hand. I also program my scanner by hand (396xt) and I have over 50 systems in there. Yes it can be tedious but when you get on a roll it can be done as quickly as by computer. Especially if you are entering frequency by frequency or TG by TG. You still have the same number of 'keystrokes' per se. At this time I would not program any scanner any other way. All hands on for me. As you, I learned a whole lot. And 'learned' is the key word there. I actually want it harder. That way it is easier when ^#$% happens.
 

wtp

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always by hand

since 2005
i am a numbers kind of guy so i don't need it spelled out for me.
i do not have any alpha tags except for the system names, it also confuses anybody that looks at it.1616 and 1680 are dispatch 1 and 3,they are the most active around here.
so if ii go somewhere and find a new number it is as easy to set up a system then to write it down and then get home and use software.
ok back to the fun.
enjoy.
 
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