BCD396XT Need Help

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terryyvr

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Joined
Dec 24, 2009
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49
Location
Vancouver BC
I just pruchased this Scanner last week, & so far it has been a total nightmare. I've tried programming it Manually, & by luck I picked up our Vancouver Emergency Services, which uses LTR. When I went to program another Emergency Services into my area, I some how I knocked out the 1st Emergency Services I programmed, & then the 2nd one never programmed.

I then signed up for a Premium Membership on Radio Reference, & thought the Downloading would be much easier, & so far I'm lost. When I clecked on the Download on the Radio reference site nothing happens? Can someone please provide me Step by Step Instructions on how to Program it Manually, & also how to Download the Frequencies?

Your Assistance would be much appreciated.

Thanks.
 

mancow

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Feb 19, 2003
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5,938
Location
N.E. Kansas
You didn't tell us what software are you using. We need to know that fist before we can help.
 

ElGenio

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Joined
Dec 20, 2009
Messages
76
Location
M
terryyvr, I'm in the same position as you with the same scanner. I got mine about 3 weeks ago and it took me about a week to figure most of it out. I consider myself pretty technologically inclined and that thing is a total nightmare to learn. I suggest you forget about programming it by hand for your sanity.

Have you tried FreeScan from Scannow.org? You need windows to run the software.
 

Scorch

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Joined
May 5, 2002
Messages
81
Location
Ramona, CA.
X2 on forgetting about manual programming. Get Freescan & use it to get downloads from RR database & program the scanner. Search & read the Wikis! The lights WILL come on!
 

Rinzai

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Joined
Jan 1, 2010
Messages
2
I'm in the same boat. I've gotten Freescan and apparently downloaded the local county frequencies, but I can't get the scanner to look at them. It insists on checking on Alaska and some out-of-state county. The remote control feature doesn't show any obvious way of picking a set of things to scan--but maybe I misunderstand how this thing works in the first place.

Why can't I just enter a frequency to monitor?
 

ElGenio

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Joined
Dec 20, 2009
Messages
76
Location
M
I'm in the same boat. I've gotten Freescan and apparently downloaded the local county frequencies, but I can't get the scanner to look at them. It insists on checking on Alaska and some out-of-state county. The remote control feature doesn't show any obvious way of picking a set of things to scan--but maybe I misunderstand how this thing works in the first place.

Why can't I just enter a frequency to monitor?
I don't know if this is the right or wrong way but I uploaded all the pre loaded frequencies to freescan on my computer, saved them, and then selected the erase memory and settings button and uploaded just my systems that I made. So right now all I have is 2 systems.
 

sjlamb

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Joined
May 27, 2007
Messages
865
Location
Lakewood Ranch, Florida 34202
I don't know if this is the right or wrong way but I uploaded all the pre loaded frequencies to freescan on my computer, saved them, and then selected the erase memory and settings button and uploaded just my systems that I made. So right now all I have is 2 systems.
Smart move.... especially for newcomers to DMA Scanners.
 

sjlamb

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May 27, 2007
Messages
865
Location
Lakewood Ranch, Florida 34202
Why can't I just enter a frequency to monitor?
You can.... if the frequency is a conventional freq. (non-trunked). Trunked radio systems, however, do not work that simply. They are comprised of a group of frequencies that interact with one another. When a user keys up a radio, the system finds an available frequency and transmits the signal (vey simplified explanation). Thus, everytime a radio keys up, it may be assigned to a different frequency within the system. Your scanning (trunk tracking scanners) will follow or "track" this jumping about of frequencies so that you can follow the conversation.

In trunk systems, you do not monitor a single frequency or channel. You can however, set the scanner up to monitor a particular GROUP and listen only to that group's activity (ex. Sheriff's Office) or.... even to go so far as to monitor a single CHANNEL (Talkgroup ID) within that group.

Modern public service radio systems are complicated critters..... and it takes another complicated critter (your scanner) to decode and follow the activity. Today's modern digital scanners ARE very complicated out of neccesity.... not by choice. Thus, you need to first learn and understand the difference between CONVENTIONAL radio systems versus Trunked Radio Systems. Your area may use a combination of both types or just one or the other. Over the past ten years, most agencies have moved towards the implementation and use of TRUNKED systems.

I would suggest you begin anew by purging your scanner's memory of pre-programmed crappola BEFORE beginning to download and set it up for YOUR area. Once you have done that, you can download from the RR database only those types of systems and agencies for your area that interest you.

Here is an excellent reference that has been posted by another member (RVictor) that gives a very detailed overview of how trunked systems are organized in your scanner. You should use this as a starting point to understanding your radio's DMA Memory architecture:

Steve,

Here's something that I've posted before that may be helpful:

With respect to conventional frequencies, there are SYSTEMS which contain one or more GROUPS. A GROUP contains one or more channels. For each channel you enter the frequency, alpha tag, and various other parameters that relate to that channel. There are no sites for conventional channels.

SYSTEM 1
.....GROUP 1
..........CHANNEL A
..........CHANNEL B
.....GROUP 2
..........CHANNEL C
..........CHANNEL D
SYSTEM 2
.....GROUP 1
..........CHANNEL E
..........CHANNEL F
SYSTEM 3
.....GROUP 1
..........CHANNEL G

With respect to trunked systems, there are SYSTEMS which contain one or more SITES and one or more GROUPS. In each SITE, you enter the frequencies for that SITE. For each GROUP you enter one or more TALKGROUP IDS. For each TALKGROUP ID you enter an alpha tag and various other parameters that relate to that talkgroup.

SYSTEM 4
.....SITE 1
..........FREQUENCY 1
..........FREQUENCY 2
..........FREQUENCY 3
.....SITE 2
..........FREQUENCY 4
..........FREQUENCY 5
..........FREQUENCY 6
.....GROUP 1
..........TALKGROUP ID 1
..........TALKGROUP ID 2
..........TALKGROUP ID 3
.....GROUP 2
..........TALKGROUP ID 4
..........TALKGROUP ID 5
SYSTEM 5, etc.

System/Site Quick Keys (SQKs) allow you activate and deactivate systems or trunked sites for scanning. For conventional systems, the SQKs are set at the system level. For trunked systems, the SQKs are set at the site level. There can be more than one system or site assigned to a SQK.

The single digit SQKs are toggled between active and inactive by pressing the corresponding key on the keyboard. The two digit SQKs are toggled between active and inactive by pressing the ./NO key followed by the two digits on the keyboard.

The display

S0:1234--7**0 indicates that SQKs 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, and 0 are active; SQKs 8 and 9 are inactive; and SQKs 5 and 6 are unassigned.

S1:12---678** indicates that SQKs 11, 12, 16, 17, and 18 are active; SQKs 19 and 10 are inactive; and SQKs13, 14, and 15 are unassigned.

Etc. to S9:12345678790

Each system can have up to 10 Group Quick Keys (GQKs). The indicator for the GQKs is the line below the SQK line and works the same way except that it only has ten possible values and therefore is only single digits. There can also be more than one group assigned to a GQK.

GQKs can be toggled active and inactive by pressing FUNC and the keyboard number while the scanner is scanning the particular system which contains the groups that you are controlling.

If you use software to program your scanner, you can assign the SQKs and GQKs as you set up your programming and can also set the initial state of the SQKs and GQKs.

Dick
 
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Rinzai

Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2010
Messages
2
I read about the trunked systems after writing my post. I think I'll try erasing what's on the scanner in favor of the new stuff. Sounds like a decent plan. Thanks!
 
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