BCD436HP & Lewisville, TX (new P25 phase 2)

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TheRockstarNerd

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Jan 17, 2016
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Location
White Settlement, TX
Hey Everyone!

So I'm half a n00b here. I'm mostly new to digital and P25 Phase 2 systems, and the scanners used to listen in. My city/county (Lewisville, TX / Denton County Texas) finally made the switch over to P25 Phase 2 this past week, so I went ahead and upgraded to the BCD436HP. I dig the scanner so far, except for these issues below (which might not be a scanner issue itself).

Lewisville PD is what I listen to 75% of the time. Since they've gone digital...it's been not so bueno for my listening hobby. Here's my main issue: I feel like I'm missing very large amounts of conversation in the Lewisville talkgroup, and there is one TGID (Police NCIC/Info) that sounds garbled/scrambled. The system/site setup in Sentinel does not seem to match up with RR...so I made sure I used RR and entered the sites manually.

Here is the setup, more or less (Denton County Public Safety Trunking System, Denton, Texas - Scanner Frequencies

Favorite: "Lewisville PD"
System: Denton County Public safety
>>Site 1: Denton Simulcast (all frequencies listed)
>>Site 2: Lewisville Simulcast (all frequencies listed)
>>>>TGIDs (I have all of the Lewisville PD TGIDs set)


1. Do I need both Sites for Lewisville talk groups to function correctly... or is it only needing the Lewisville Simulcast?


2. TGID 11556 (Police NCIC/Info) sounds choppy but sometimes parts of words sound correct. Neither RR or the 436HP display show the transmissions to be encrypted. Is this an issue with my setup? Am I missing something here? Is it possible they're encrypting only one TGID...but it's not listed anywhere or showing up as such on the scanner?


3. I've tried doing the "ID Search" option, while monitoring both simulcast sites...and I'm still feeling like I'm missing communications. I've been listening to them for over 2 years now, and know their trends and talk volume. I've even seen them (in person) using a radio, and nothing popping up on the scanner.


4. I've tried messing with the Site digital threshold and levels while using the error rate monitor (which does show some numbers)... but i can only adjust between 5 and 13. I've tried slowly stepping through each to see if any signals (including the scrambled ones)...and nothing changes.


5. I've tried changing out the stock antenna with the one from my BCD396xt, and even tried a SRH77CA (which I'm now finding is not very good for 800MHz...which is what Lewisville Simulcast falls into). You'd think I was 50 miles away... but I'm pretty sure I'm less than 1.5 miles (straight-line) from the system antenna.



What else can I do here? What can I try? Will doing the ID Search option allow any TGIDs come up, even if I don't have them stored anywhere?


Thanks for the feedback...really hoping to get this straightened out. I feel like I'm missing out on a ton of what's been going on...and it's not a fun feeling being outside the circle. lol

TheRockstarNerd
(Eddie D.)
 

hiegtx

Mentor
Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 8, 2004
Messages
6,410
Location
Dallas, TX
Hey Everyone!

So I'm half a n00b here. I'm mostly new to digital and P25 Phase 2 systems, and the scanners used to listen in. My city/county (Lewisville, TX / Denton County Texas) finally made the switch over to P25 Phase 2 this past week, so I went ahead and upgraded to the BCD436HP. I dig the scanner so far, except for these issues below (which might not be a scanner issue itself).

Lewisville PD is what I listen to 75% of the time. Since they've gone digital...it's been not so bueno for my listening hobby. Here's my main issue: I feel like I'm missing very large amounts of conversation in the Lewisville talkgroup, and there is one TGID (Police NCIC/Info) that sounds garbled/scrambled. The system/site setup in Sentinel does not seem to match up with RR...so I made sure I used RR and entered the sites manually.

Here is the setup, more or less (Denton County Public Safety Trunking System, Denton, Texas - Scanner Frequencies

Favorite: "Lewisville PD"
System: Denton County Public safety
>>Site 1: Denton Simulcast (all frequencies listed)
>>Site 2: Lewisville Simulcast (all frequencies listed)
>>>>TGIDs (I have all of the Lewisville PD TGIDs set)


1. Do I need both Sites for Lewisville talk groups to function correctly... or is it only needing the Lewisville Simulcast?


2. TGID 11556 (Police NCIC/Info) sounds choppy but sometimes parts of words sound correct. Neither RR or the 436HP display show the transmissions to be encrypted. Is this an issue with my setup? Am I missing something here? Is it possible they're encrypting only one TGID...but it's not listed anywhere or showing up as such on the scanner?


3. I've tried doing the "ID Search" option, while monitoring both simulcast sites...and I'm still feeling like I'm missing communications. I've been listening to them for over 2 years now, and know their trends and talk volume. I've even seen them (in person) using a radio, and nothing popping up on the scanner.


4. I've tried messing with the Site digital threshold and levels while using the error rate monitor (which does show some numbers)... but i can only adjust between 5 and 13. I've tried slowly stepping through each to see if any signals (including the scrambled ones)...and nothing changes.


5. I've tried changing out the stock antenna with the one from my BCD396xt, and even tried a SRH77CA (which I'm now finding is not very good for 800MHz...which is what Lewisville Simulcast falls into). You'd think I was 50 miles away... but I'm pretty sure I'm less than 1.5 miles (straight-line) from the system antenna.



What else can I do here? What can I try? Will doing the ID Search option allow any TGIDs come up, even if I don't have them stored anywhere?


Thanks for the feedback...really hoping to get this straightened out. I feel like I'm missing out on a ton of what's been going on...and it's not a fun feeling being outside the circle. lol

TheRockstarNerd
(Eddie D.)
Eddie,

If you are using a Favorites list, then edit that list and add the Lewisville site to the Denton County P25 system. Doing ID Search alone won't help you, since, from what I've read over on the DFWScan Yahoo group, Lewisville is using some of their old systems frequencies as their site for the new system. Note that, since that update to the database here on RadioReference was made this week, the Uniden database update that should come out tomorrow will reflect both sites. At this minute, it would show only the Denton simulcast. I added the site manually to my Favorites lists for my 436HP & 536HP, as well as for my HP-2.

However, once you add the site, whether manually now, or by getting the new update tomorrow morning, I'd still suggest using ID Search. If you look at the original Lewisville system, there are 13 talkgroups for Lewisville PD. However, on the new Denton P25 system, there are only four. I suspect that Lewisville has additional TGID's other than those four, so by using ID Search, you may be able to find them.

I use an 800MHz antenna on my 436HP's. Much better than the stock antenna, and better than the SRH77CA, though that antenna or ones equivalent to it are what I use when out west of Tarrant County, where virtually everything is Vhf-high.
 
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