Analog or Digital Systems or Both for Seattle Area?

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Deekster

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Patience please as I have to start somewhere and I appreciate any info provided. This is without the best forum anywhere for scanner info. That's about all I know at the minute but the most important! I live in Seattle, WA and the Police & Fire are on trunked systems. TC:3344 is an example. I have done research and was told there is analog and digital systems. Are systems really eventually changing over to make getting a digital a smart buy? I don't even know if the Seattle Police & Fire is digital or analog yet. Is is worth getting a scanner that has both? Or is there the possibility I might only need one or the other? From what I have read it seems getting the scanner programmed is a better idea for a newbie than trying to program it myself? I am 62 years old and my last scanner was a Bearcat 101 (I think) 30 years ago. So, I am at a loss in this scanner world right now! I just got into the scanner research and would appreciate any help in suggesting a good scanner. So far I have come across Bearcat BCD396xt/BCD996xt and a couple of Radio Shack's handheld and desktop scanners. I would prefer a desktop model. prices so far range from $199.00 - $500.00 plus accessories.Thank you in advance, Deekster
 
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As for Base/Mobile you might like these:GRE PSR-600, Radio Shack Pro-107 or a Uniden Bearcat BCD996XT. You can have the best of both worlds with these. Analog/Conventional/P25,Apco25/Analog and Digital you get the idea. I think you will get a lot more out of it possibly. All these scanners do analog trunking and digital trunking as well. :)
 

Deekster

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Thank you! I will take your great advice! I have seen on the web the Radio Shack Pro-107, Uniden Bearcat BCD996XT but not the GRE PSR-600 yet! I like the feature you mentioned of having the best of both worlds! I'll take a closer look at these and see which one I like the best. I really appreciate the feedback as I don't feel as lost in today's scanner world as I did just a few days ago! Thanks! Deekster
 
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lowboy654

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Hi
Save your money, Digital is not well used in Washington State, I own three Digital scanners the Pro-96 the PSR-500 and 600 I am up in Snohomish County Washington State and that will be not money well spent at this time, I can tell you that I have never received a Digital SIG that was not encrypted, so you can not hear a thing in my end of the State and most likely king County is about the same maybe a bit better but not worth the extra cash at this point.

The person that has replyed to you is from out of State in the past posts and knows not what he is talking about for our State and he should just State what he knows for sure as, I just did.
 
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Deekster

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Thanks for the info Ken! Crazy question: How much do the police and fire use digital signals? Is it worth getting the analog or just forget the whole thing. I ask that because maybe that's how the police and fire like it (no public reception) if that's the case. Do the digital systems cost the agencies a lot to go to digital? What percent today would you guess/calculate police and fire in king county are on analog? Thanks, Doug
 

lowboy654

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All of them are analog the Police and Fire, only the Feds use Digital and they are for the most part encrypted so that type of scanner would be a waste of money.if the police use Digital it will be encrypted you will not hear a thing end of story.
 
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I do know that Seattle is analog. Yes digital is expensive. Analog is fine for his area of course. I was just merely suggesting those to something to look at.
 

lowboy654

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I do know that Seattle is analog. Yes digital is expensive. Analog is fine for his area of course. I was just merely suggesting those to something to look at.
Why tell someone that is new here and asking for guidance to spend money that will be a waste of time and money is not well spent time for anyone, I would think that you should talk about what you know about.
 
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JoeyC

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Why tell someone that is new here and asking for guidance to spend money that will be a waste of time and money is not well spent time for anyone, I would think that you should talk about what you know about.
Oslo did nothing wrong in telling the gentleman his options as he did. He did not steer the guy wrong. In fact he gave good advice. Fact of the matter is that communications are moving towards digital and analog will become less and less. Whether this is a year, 2 or 10 years from now remains to be seen. Everything broadcast in digital is not encrypted so your suggesting it is is false information to the newbie. Many people do not have $$ to spend every couple of years on scanners so if this is the last scanner he may buy for 10 years or so, he may want to consider spending the money. Also, if you plan on traveling with the scanner, you will find that digital is everywhere, maybe not in Washington state at the moment, but coming...
 

lowboy654

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The OP was asking about the Seattle area being that I live in that area I was just Stating what is going on now and the foreseeable future. why would we tell a new guy to spend a lot of money on something that is not up and running in this area, I don't understand get something that works if you like what you have upgrade it when the need Arieses, I say don't spend the big money for something that is not here like I said I have a 96, 500 and a 600 I don't get any digital stuff on them, why waste the money until you are hooked like me, spend $1800.00 on something that dose not work to its full capacity for this area.
 

Stavro35

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I have a Radio shack Pro96.. it's digital and been worth it, even in the Seattle area for some fed stuff and some military stuff. I have a GRE/PSR 500. I travel with at least one scanner .And that is usually my pro96. On an up coming trip to Astoria,I am just taking my Pro164.. If you don't travel, then spending money on an expensive radio is a waste. Of coruse if you have to "save up" then purchasing an expensive radio is out of the question .
 

rodentkj

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I concur with Ken.
I can not comment on anything other than the Public Safety standpoint. But spending extra money on a digi scanner is a waste of money for Snohomish and King Co. Right now there is very little digital coms. And of what there is, it's encrypted.

So that leaves the question..
"What about the future?"

Well... Who knows. But I think you would be kidding yourself if you did not assume that
1. Communications are going to move to digital.
2. They will likely be encrypted.

---my 2 cents....
 
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Deekster

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Thanks for the info! When digital does come and is encrypted is that it? Meaning, we would be able to listen anymore? Thanks! Deekster (Original Poster)
 

rodentkj

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Thanks for the info! When digital does come and is encrypted is that it? Meaning, we would be able to listen anymore? Thanks! Deekster (Original Poster)
Correct. When it does come it will almost certainly be encrypted. Meaning the scanner community ears will fall silent.
 
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I just want to say analog or digital. I think all scanners old and new are pretty cool wither they still work or not. It's up to the individual what they choose. With that I will stay out of your Washington Forum as not to cause any trouble as I see that I have.
 

Baker845

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I wounldn't worry about stay out of Washington Form here, you have the right to point out and say what you choose here, just like evey one else. Digital is used in the State Of Washington, more by Fed, and Military, not much with PD or Fire but its coming. Tacoma TRS uses Mixed analog and digital on there system. Save your money for little longer, then in other year or 2 it would be good time to get Digital scanner.
 
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