BCD536HP vs. BCD996XT

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ffemt613

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Hello all,


since the 536HP has been out for a few months now, and I'm in the market for a base scanner, I was wondering what everyone would recommend?

A few details:

I monitor mostly analog systems, but I am surrounded by digital type systems around me that I can receive with a good antenna.

I dont have any P25 Phase 2 systems remotely close to my location

I like the simplicity of the programming of the 996XT, but I like some of the features of the 536HP.

Anyone got any opinions of which one might be good?

Thanks!!
 

bama9999

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Is there a chance that any p25 phase 2 systems will be coming to your area any time soon? Do you travel to areas that do use phase 2, and if so, would you be using the 536 mobile? If so, then a 536 definitely sounds like the way to go. If not, then the 996XT is a great scanner that is available for less than the 536, so it is definitely a viable option.

I find the BCD536HP easy to customize using the Sentinel software and I love the features it has. I think in the long run, you'd be happiest getting the 536. Mine pretty much instantly became my favorite scanner as soon as I started using it.
 

AA6IO

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I have two 536HPs and had one 996XT. I say "had" because today I bought another 996XT to have on hand. My local Radio Shack had one (brand new) that they wanted to clear out of stock for $349. That's a lot cheaper than $600. That said, I don't think the 536HP is any harder to program than the 996XT. Both are good scanners.
If money is not that much of an object, I probably would go with the 536HP. Right now they might not seem much different. However, when the analyze features are eventually added, and the Wi-Fi app is ready, then I think the differences will become more apparent. The recording/replay feature is also a big bonus. In addition, as bama9999 mentioned, if phase II P25 is anywhere on the horizon, your shelf life of the 536HP will be much longer.
However, the 996XT is an excellent scanner, and like me, you may be able to find one at a pretty good price. It will serve you well for years.

Steve AA6IO
 

DaveIN

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Given the choice of the 536 or 996, I would opt for the 536. The sensitive receiver, display abilities, full updateable Radioreference dB and memory function, recording features, and P25 Phase II/X2-TDMA was a decider for me. Going forward it will have advanced analysis and control features.
 

ofd8001

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I got a 536 when they first came out. I liked it so well, I got a second one for my vehicle, which had a 996XT.

As far as I'm concerned, it's a toss-up on programming - they are both complicated. It's like the difference between running 25 or 26 miles - if you're going to do 25, then the 26th is just a little more.
 

ffemt613

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Thanks everyone!

I think I will break down and buy the 536HP in a few weeks. Should hopefully give enough time for all the ones with the headphone issues to be sorted out and get a good one!
 

jdobbs2001

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I got a 536 when they first came out. I liked it so well, I got a second one for my vehicle, which had a 996XT.

As far as I'm concerned, it's a toss-up on programming - they are both complicated. It's like the difference between running 25 or 26 miles - if you're going to do 25, then the 26th is just a little more.
Now a days with software like freescan, programming should no longer be an issue.
 

MesquiteWx

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Now a days with software like freescan, programming should no longer be an issue.
Freescan doesn't support the new scanners and unless something has changed. The last I heard was there would be no support offered for them. Bob announced the other day though that he is working on a new ProScan that will support the new models though.
 

pepsima1

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I have two 536HPs and had one 996XT. I say "had" because today I bought another 996XT to have on hand. My local Radio Shack had one (brand new) that they wanted to clear out of stock for $349. That's a lot cheaper than $600. That said, I don't think the 536HP is any harder to program than the 996XT. Both are good scanners.
If money is not that much of an object, I probably would go with the 536HP. Right now they might not seem much different. However, when the analyze features are eventually added, and the Wi-Fi app is ready, then I think the differences will become more apparent. The recording/replay feature is also a big bonus. In addition, as bama9999 mentioned, if phase II P25 is anywhere on the horizon, your shelf life of the 536HP will be much longer.
However, the 996XT is an excellent scanner, and like me, you may be able to find one at a pretty good price. It will serve you well for years.

Steve AA6IO

I cruised Amazon.com one day about a month or so ago and got a new BCD996XT for 310.00. It was a steal
 

ks_scan

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Get the 536. I just sold a 996 for the 536 and it is a much better radio with regards to P25 decoding. You can program it the same as the 996, but you have the added benefit of home patrol. Great product.
 

Bearcat1207

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A typo was made easy to see why, you can't even see it it unless you hold it in direct sunlight or under a very bright light. Just fix it even though you'll never see it again......
 

JimAckley

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Kinda off topic, kinda not:

Would you say the extra abilities of the 536 are worth losing the ability to have the remote head?
 

MesquiteWx

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Kinda off topic, kinda not:

Would you say the extra abilities of the 536 are worth losing the ability to have the remote head?
If Uniden every gets around to launching the App, then you will be able to use your iPhone or iPad has a remote head. No idea how well it will function as a remote head as there is a lot of questions still unanswered.

With that said, I do love my 996XT but the 536HP does have some very nice features as well. I think the main selling point for me was the P25 Phase II. If that is something you really need or may need then it is worth it. The new QK layout and hold buttons are really nice feature too. Also the screen is a lot better and as much as I love my 996XT the 536HP makes it look like a toy compared to the screen on the 996XT. So in the end, you have a remote head option and if you need P25 Phase II then it is certainly worth the upgrade as you will gain a couple of extra perks.
 

SCPD

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996XT

I sold my 536HP and am going back to the 996XT,I like the audio better,its easier to work and program,has control channel search for finding P25 mystery systems,Service Search and the build quality to me is better.Oh yeah, the quick key system is alot better!
So I have to subscribe to radio reference to program new things,so what.Maybe I'll get the remote head this time.The price is still high on this radio.
 

tumegpc

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I sold my 536HP and am going back to the 996XT,I like the audio better,its easier to work and program,has control channel search for finding P25 mystery systems,Service Search and the build quality to me is better.Oh yeah, the quick key system is alot better!.
Same here, running the latest version of ProScan with my 996XT.
 

AA6IO

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I like both the 996XT and 536HP. Actually find the quick keys to be more flexible on the 536HP than the 996XT once I understood the extra layer of the FL QK. Also find that being able to enable/disable service types is great, for example, when monitoring LA Police and LA Sheriffs. I can turn off Law-Dispatch, which dominates the channels that appear, and listen more to TAC and Talk-Around channels. I know you can do that with group QKs on the 996XT, but this way I can turn on/off service types across mulitple systems at the same time (I have about 50 conv/trunk systems programmed).
The P25 decode is similar between 996XT and 536HP, except on one problem Orange County (OCCS) system, where the 536HP (once I set the P25 manual settings correctly for system) is much better on P25 than the 996XT, and as good, if not better than my PRO-197/PSR-600.
But for me, so far, the big advantage of the 536HP over the 996XT is the on-board recording. I often leave the scanner on a particular system, for certain digital talk groups, all day while at work, come back in evening, and can listen to everything in a relatively short amount of time. (More flexible than running x96XTs with a software program like Butel for recording purposes).
So I would say, I like having both the 996XT and 536HP (as well as the 396XT and 436HP). But after 2 months of using the new Unidens, if I could only have one (mobile/base and portable), I would definitely go with the x36HPs (at least in a signal-dense area like Los Angeles).

Steve AA6IO
 
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