AFRRCS and Pro-106

Microscan

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Apr 24, 2004
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Is anybody on the board using a Pro-106 to monitor AFRRCS and, if so how well does it perform?
 

Microscan

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Apr 24, 2004
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I did know someone who was running a similar PSR 500 and was happy with it. It wouldn't work well on the Edmonton area simulcast cluster.
Fortunately in Cowtown we don't have to deal with that flaming dumpster.

I have a shot at getting one for a great price but, there is some ambiguity about its' coverage in the portions of the 700 Mhz band where AFRRCS dwells. I'll keep on searching on RRef and elsewhere for a definitive answer.

I'm surprised by how much emergency service traffic is in clear. As well as the two dongle/Unitrunker setup does work it doesn't follow groups from tower to tower as they move around.

Cheers
 

Jay911

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Fortunately in Cowtown we don't have to deal with that flaming dumpster.

I have a shot at getting one for a great price but, there is some ambiguity about its' coverage in the portions of the 700 Mhz band where AFRRCS dwells. I'll keep on searching on RRef and elsewhere for a definitive answer.

I'm surprised by how much emergency service traffic is in clear. As well as the two dongle/Unitrunker setup does work it doesn't follow groups from tower to tower as they move around.

Cheers
I have both a PSR-500 (handheld, cousin of the PRO-106) and a PSR-600 (base/mobile, cousin of the PRO-197, though that one is offline due to a power brick issue) and have relegated them both to control channel monitoring duty with PRO96COM. They work great for that. I haven't used them for actual voice monitoring in ages - they aren't designed well for multi-site monitoring as you say. If you're using them in a stationary location, and only committed to monitoring one site, I would think they would work OK. As far as I recall, the 700 MHz issues with the GRE built radios is in the upper part of the band, in the "inputs" (if you will) which if you're doing normal monitoring shouldn't be a factor. In specific I recall that freqs in 796-805 may be either contaminated with images from 800 MHz (851-869) systems, or blocked from access, depending on what version of firmware you have in the radio (blocked in later firmware revisions because of the image problem).

For the sake of interest, I spent some time in Edmonton and area last week with an SDS200 and it performed admirably on the simulcast cluster (and cluster is indeed an apt term for it IMO). One thing I will say is if you are going to monitor in Edmonton, disable individual call on your ID search/scan options - transit uses it like they get money every time they make an I-call.
 

Microscan

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Apr 24, 2004
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Thanks Jay.
I'm going to take the plunge as it appears that a little firmware experimenting would deal with any concerns. For multi site monitoring I'm intrigued with the object oriented structure of the scanners' software.
As for image issues I'm a big believer in having an inline amp feeding a narrow band pass filter. That approach has worked well for the Calgary Municipal system and for, ADS-B monitoring. For anyone interested in home brewing see:


Cheers
 

smason

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The little I've used my 106 for on AFRRCS, it seemed to work ok. Can't say that I've listened much to the system at all.
 

Microscan

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Apr 24, 2004
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The little I've used my 106 for on AFRRCS, it seemed to work ok. Can't say that I've listened much to the system at all.
The fact that you were able to monitor at all alleviates any concerns that I had. Thanks for the feedback.
 

smason

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I'm curious about what you're planning to monitor in the Calgary area?
Last I looked in the database there's weren't many non-encrypted talk groups.
 

Jay911

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I'm curious about what you're planning to monitor in the Calgary area?
Last I looked in the database there's weren't many non-encrypted talk groups.
These are among the channels I have picked up on Calgary and area sites.

Redwood Meadows Emergency Services
Rocky View County Fire Service
Tsuut'ina Nation Fire & Rescue Service
Foothills Fire
Canmore Fire
Mountain View Fire
AHSEMS Mutual Aid Channels
Common Event Talkgroups
Vulcan Emergency Services
Willow Creek Emergency Services
Bighorn Emergency Services
Calgary Police Backup Channels
Various Community Peace Officers
 

smason

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I have a PSR-600 and a Pro-106. Bought the 600 from Universal Radio back when the Canadian dollar was close to par. What a deal compared to buying in Canada! I was in California for a wedding, and popped into a Radio Shack, and grabbed the 106.
Both have performed quite well despite being in a not-so-great reception area in the deep south. Mostly used on the Calgary Municipal Trunked system.
 

Microscan

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I have a PSR-600 and a Pro-106. Bought the 600 from Universal Radio back when the Canadian dollar was close to par. What a deal compared to buying in Canada! I was in California for a wedding, and popped into a Radio Shack, and grabbed the 106.
Both have performed quite well despite being in a not-so-great reception area in the deep south. Mostly used on the Calgary Municipal Trunked system.
I've heard lots of mutual aid traffic in clear. EMS/Fire/STARS and CPS/RCMP among others. Nothing confidential affecting investigations, operations in progress or patient information of course. I've copied traffic on the Simplex Freq's as well esp. Sim 1.

I've always been a fan of GRE based scanners. Good audio, analog and digital and, good performance in dodgy reception areas.
 

smason

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These are among the channels I have picked up on Calgary and area sites.
Thanks! I set up DSD+ on the Banker's site at work and monitored for a while. More going on than I thought.
I have re-programmed my AFRRCS TGs on my 106 and will see how it does on the Southland site.
One disadvantage of the GREs is they don't mute encrypted TGs, so doing a wildcard doesn't work so well.
Also, Win500 shows all groups as D, not DE. and seems to import encrypted groups even when you tell it not to, but it's not been updated in a long time, so I had to do my import a bit more carefully.
 
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