A Couple of Scanner Newbie questions

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Zman427

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I'm new to scanning, but have purchased a Uniden BC75XLT. Here are the questions:

1. The manual uses the terms "Bank" and "Frequencies". Freescan describes Series and Groups. How do these terms relate?

2. The scanner has preprogramed service bands 1-5. When I bring up those bands in Freescan, the 1-5 banks appear empty. Does that mean for example, if I wish to add frequencies to band 5 (civil air), that I can not only scan the civil air band from start to end, but can add up to 30 additional frequencies to that band?

3. A Freescan tutorial on YouTube shows creating a group with series sub-catagories. How does the scanner show those series/groups and use them?
 

bama9999

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Unless there's been some change that I'm not aware of, FreeSCAN will not work with that particular model of scanner. FreeSCAN is for DMA scanners, such as the BCD996XT and the BCD396XT. The BC75XLT, as you noted, uses banks for storing the frequencies.
 

hiegtx

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I'm new to scanning, but have purchased a Uniden BC75XLT. Here are the questions:

1. The manual uses the terms "Bank" and "Frequencies". Freescan describes Series and Groups. How do these terms relate?

2. The scanner has preprogramed service bands 1-5. When I bring up those bands in Freescan, the 1-5 banks appear empty. Does that mean for example, if I wish to add frequencies to band 5 (civil air), that I can not only scan the civil air band from start to end, but can add up to 30 additional frequencies to that band?

3. A Freescan tutorial on YouTube shows creating a group with series sub-catagories. How does the scanner show those series/groups and use them?
As bama9999 has noted, FreeSCAN does not support the BC75XLT. It is a "banks and frequencies" scanner, whereas FreeSCAN supports the DMA series of scanners, which are 'Systems' (not Series) and 'Groups'. A complete list of the scanners that FreeSCAN currently does support, can be found here. Uniden and Butel (the ARC series of software) both have programs for the BC75XLT. Links are on the Wiki page.

"Banks and Frequencies", along with the "Systems and Groups" method used by the Uniden DMA scanners, are both means of managing how the scanner stores and accesses frequency programming information. While they both accomplish the same thing, they are entirely different and not interchangeable. The GRE developed scanners, which are now going to to be manufactured and sold through Whistler (some labeled to sell at Radio Shack) use a third method, Object Oriented. None of these are interchangeable with each other.

I think the rest of your questions are basically because you are trying to use FreeSCAN to program a scanner it does not support, so you are not seeing what is available. Download the correct software for your scanner, then see if that does not begin to clear things up somewhat. I don't own that particular scanner, so I'm not familiar with it's exact features.
 

SCPD

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I'm new to scanning, but have purchased a Uniden BC75XLT. Here are the questions:

1. The manual uses the terms "Bank" and "Frequencies". Freescan describes Series and Groups. How do these terms relate?
How Systems and Groups are defined on a particular system varies a bit, but for a system like the Harris EDACS Trunked 800 MHz systems (formerly GE and MA/COM), systems are the individual sites used within an entire radio network including the conventional system. For example, East, West, North, South are 4 systems. Conventional would be a 5th but I don't scan those because CONV is generally radio-to-radio (point to point) with the exception of repeater conventional channels. For the trunked business end, each site contains a bank of frequencies. Some sites may have only 4 or 6 800 MHz freq's and a full site might have 16, 20, 24, depending on the engineering. The system is basically the infrastructure and are usually set up with a level of simulcasting to enhance signal propagation throughout a service area. Talkgroups or Groups are how each agency or "user" on the systems are allocated. Some systems separate by assigning a bank of groups to an agency, and use Logical ID Numbers (LID's) in a certain group for that agency. Or, there's a main talkgroup for dispatch and a number of tac groups for all Fire, EMS and LEO's within their own setup requirements. It's helpful to understand that the reason the scanner needs all that specific talkgroup identifiers is because of the trunking of these system. The only way to shoehorn hundreds of radios onto a relatively small set of frequencies is through trunking. So, when a firefighter out east keys up and the system reads that radio's LID (it already knows the radio is on because it's constantly pinging on the control channel), it broadcasts on lets say, channel 2 on the main site and then when the same person keys up again 10 seconds later, channel 2 might busy by another user and they're now on channel 8. The scanner can track the various frequencies by scanning them all sequentially, but the only way to make sure you're not scanning ALL users who are transmitting is by the specific talkgroup identifiers programmed into the scanner. And like on my radio shack PRO-163, by closing the "Bank" only those programmed talkgroups are supposed to be received.

Of course, as latter parts of your questions relate, how you program the Uniden with all the specifics about a talkgroup makes the thing work correctly. I'm only speaking of your question relating to how the terms are used in a typical setup.

Understanding how your system you want to scan is set up can make the process a lot easier. I knew my system intimately because I did my agencie's 800 MHz radio work for 11 years, but I didn't know jack about scanning with the 163 -- which is where these forums become invaluable....

Obviously, we're not transmitting but knowing what the nuts, bolts and how the system's gears turn is very necessary in my opinion.

As for your scanner, I don't have that kind of knowledge, but these very intelligent folks out here I am sure, do.
 

hiegtx

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So as not to confuse the issue further, the scanner the OP is asking about, the BC75XLT, is a ten bank, 300 channel, analog only scanner. It is not a trunking capable scanner, and only receives Vhf low & high, plus Uhf. No 700 or 800MHz coverage.

Without more information from the OP as to what agencies (cities, counties, etc) or services (such as aircraft) are desired to be programmed, the question cannot be answered as to whether this scanner will work for the use intended.
 

SCPD

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So as not to confuse the issue further, the scanner the OP is asking about, the BC75XLT, is a ten bank, 300 channel, analog only scanner. It is not a trunking capable scanner, and only receives Vhf low & high, plus Uhf. No 700 or 800MHz coverage.

Without more information from the OP as to what agencies (cities, counties, etc) or services (such as aircraft) are desired to be programmed, the question cannot be answered as to whether this scanner will work for the use intended.
Well, there ya go... :) Thanks.
 
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