A few general questions, thanks.

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shanny19

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I'm either a new guy w/ old questions or an old guy w/ new questions, not sure which!!!
I'm a professional fireman getting back into recreational scanning after about a 15 year break.

I've got three scanner questions, and another general radio curiosity question, if you've got the time:

1) Should I spring for digital? The only trunk system I can see myself ever monitoring is the Seattle/King Co. analog system when I visit the area. Is it moving towards digital? There is a digital statewide system in my state but I know from professional experience that it is underutilized in my neck of the woods (and that's an understatement).

2) While I'm waiting for the new scanner to show up, how do you handle narrowbanded VHF in an old scanner? I've got a PRO-2033, say I want to listen to 155.4075. Is it worth my time to plug in 155.405 or 155.410? Or is there some other trick?

3) Some of my colleagues are fond of their Yaesu wideband amateur radio transceiver handhelds. Do they in fact function as a serviceable scanner? Pros and cons?

4) (just for curiosity) What part of the radio spectrum is used for satellite radio?

Thanks for your time!!
 

captclint

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1) Should I spring for digital? The only trunk system I can see myself ever monitoring is the Seattle/King Co. analog system when I visit the area.
After seeing the rapid advances in features and capability for digital, my personal opinion is wait. It takes quite a while for any agency to make the switch, so by the time they do, scanners will be much better for about the same price. Now, if you don't think you'll be able to just a new scanner when the time comes, digital scanners are really great right about now.
2) While I'm waiting for the new scanner to show up, how do you handle narrowbanded VHF in an old scanner? I've got a PRO-2033, say I want to listen to 155.4075. Is it worth my time to plug in 155.405 or 155.410? Or is there some other trick?
No trick. Just plug in the NB freq, and your scanner will round up. You should hear most everything except the very weak signals.
 
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FLRAILMAN

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4) Are your referring to SIRIUS/XM type, wefax, milcomm or amatuer satellite comms?

FLRAILMAN
 

gmclam

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1) Should I spring for digital? The only trunk system I can see myself ever monitoring is the Seattle/King Co. analog system when I visit the area. Is it moving towards digital? There is a digital statewide system in my state but I know from professional experience that it is underutilized in my neck of the woods (and that's an understatement).
You did not indicate where you actually are or what it is you want to monitor. Are you only interested in fire channels? Or something else as well?

The thing with these scanners is that there seems to be a "better model" out "next year". So if you are actually not listening to digital, it is better to hold out. OTOH, if you think you're going to purchase a single scanner to last for oh 10 years or so, then it should be digital so you can monitor what ever you want (that can be monitored).

2) While I'm waiting for the new scanner to show up, how do you handle narrowbanded VHF in an old scanner? I've got a PRO-2033, say I want to listen to 155.4075. Is it worth my time to plug in 155.405 or 155.410? Or is there some other trick?
Yes, plug in the closest frequency and let the scanner round it off. Try frequencies on each side to see which one is clearer. The audio will be weaker anyway, since the modulation depth is less.

I'm personally not seeing many scanners out there with a specific "narrow band" selection. I don't know if the design assumes narrow band when certain frequencies are selected or if everything just passes through the same discriminator. Note: A complete scanner should have 3 selections (wide band for TV & FM broadcast, normal, and narrow).

3) Some of my colleagues are fond of their Yaesu wideband amateur radio transceiver handhelds. Do they in fact function as a serviceable scanner? Pros and cons?
Expensive receivers, better made, more likely to reject more interference, not able to "scan" or "trunk track", typically sit on a single frequency. I think a "radiophile" would have one of each a scanner and such a radio.

4) (just for curiosity) What part of the radio spectrum is used for satellite radio?
I believe it is in 900 MHz, but I'd have to dig out the specs on my receiver and double check.
 

FLRAILMAN

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whiskeytango

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ill be gettin myself a yaesu vx500 for xmas....as for your scanner dillema...have you thought about getting a scanner used from the RR classifieds? could you listen to the sat rad freqs with a wideband receiver?
 
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SteveC0625

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2) While I'm waiting for the new scanner to show up, how do you handle narrowbanded VHF in an old scanner? I've got a PRO-2033, say I want to listen to 155.4075. Is it worth my time to plug in 155.405 or 155.410? Or is there some other trick?
I have a Radio Shack PRO-71 hand held scanner that has to be at least 15 years old. It programs VHF and UHF frequencies to 4 decimal places with no problem.

If I am not mistaken, that should take care of narrow-band simplex and half duplex channels in these two frequency ranges.

Several of our largest dispatch systems in this area have moved to narrow band, and they come in just as well on my old scanner as the wide band channels did in the past.
 
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