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Buy an APCO-25 scanner for Delaware County and surroundings?

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Boomeranger

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I'm this >< close to buying the BCD396T.

But with scanning being what it is lately around Delaware county and surrounding areas, with the possible exception of Philly, I don't think it's honestly worth the money. I'm hating being less-than-state-of-the-art though!

My house need a few touch ups, too.

Any and all advice welcome.

Thanks,

Andy
Scannist
 

ctrabs74

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I would buy one...

I have a 396, even though I'm in Chester County (let's just say that West Chester can be hit and miss with neighboring systems - ie. DelCo, MontCo, and Delaware State/New Castle County signals seem to end right at the borders). One of the main systems that I monitor - West Chester PD - is in the process of going digital (P25), so I'd at least have a chance of hearing it when they switch.

Anyway, depending on where in DelCo you are (IIRC, you said you were in the Media area), a digital scanner might be useful. I've been able to pick up the Delaware digital TRS at Granite Run Mall (for those not familiar with the area, it's a couple miles west of downtown Media). You may also be pick up some New Jersey State Police comms as well in parts of Southern DelCo, and they're about to go digital.

You might also be able to pick up MontCo in some parts of Eastern DelCo as well; they have a mixed analog/digital system (analog for most PD/all EMS, digital for fire).

Also, though it's probably a few years away, it may be a matter of time before Delaware County ends up going digital; there are a couple of county frequencies that are digital capable at present, but those are rarely used tac channels.

In the end, you're probably better off going ahead and getting the 396...
 

rgchristy

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My comments are regarding listening to Delco, Philly and New Castle County. I can't comment on other counties/areas. I live in Springfield, Delco. Here's my $.02:

County/Area thoughts:
Delco - Only 1 digital frequency so far. Your Pro97 will work fine.
New Castle County - Digital
Philly TRS - Digital
Feds - Mostly digital, switching from CT

I own Pro96/2096's. My previous digital scanner was a BC250D. Listening to Philly from Delco was almost impossible. The audio and sensitivity were terrible. I realize that the BC250D is 2 generations old now, but you need to verify from someone that listens to Philly using a BCD396T, that it receives and sounds good in Delco. The BCD396T has many more features than the Pro96. My Pro96/2096's work great listening to all of the above areas from Delco.

Hope this helps. If you have any questions, please ask.

Rich
 

DELCOLHFC

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Good results in Middletown w/96

I am very close to Media ( midway between Williamson Trade School and Linville Orchards ) and I use the 96/2096 combo. From home I hear Philly and Delaware very well with the RS 800 ant. From just up the road near Rt 1 & Rt 352 ( good elevation ) I pull in Burlington County NJ's 500MHz digital system as well. Getting together with someone with a 396 would be the best way to influence your discission, or run down to DE and grab a 96 for $400 before the sale ends, you can always return it if your location doesn't allow for decent results. As others have stated above and on other threads here Delco MAY have some (more) digi in it's future, rumors that Chester County may change systems when rebanding hits (ctrabs74 have you heard anything on this?) as well as speculation that Salem County NJ may switch their UHF TRS over to digital at some point also.
I am very satisfied with my digitals.
Good luck!
Tom
 

ctrabs74

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DELCOLHFC said:
I am very close to Media ( midway between Williamson Trade School and Linville Orchards ) and I use the 96/2096 combo. From home I hear Philly and Delaware very well with the RS 800 ant. From just up the road near Rt 1 & Rt 352 ( good elevation ) I pull in Burlington County NJ's 500MHz digital system as well.
Burlington County? Next time I'm in the Lima/Media area, I'll have to check that out (it was never one of my favorite systems to program). Then again, you'd probably get only one of the sites from that system; it's a weird system compared to other county TRS networks.

Well, if you can pick up Burlington County from there, you should be able to get the NJ State Police system as well.

RE: Delaware - the odd thing is I can get a faint signal outside my house (I live just north of "Uptown" West Chester), but when I get into my house, no signal. Guess I'll have to move in the future...

As others have stated above and on other threads here Delco MAY have some (more) digi in it's future, rumors that Chester County may change systems when rebanding hits (ctrabs74 have you heard anything on this?) as well as speculation that Salem County NJ may switch their UHF TRS over to digital at some point also.
Chester County - reportedly, the latest rumor that I've heard is that they'll likely stick with the EFJunk system, but upgrade to digital; hopefully, the simulcast freqs will be P25 so there's an outside chance of those freqs being monitorable; the LTR Multi-Net system, as I've noted several times before can't be monitored as a LTR trunked system, but the freqs can be monitored in conventional format - you'll miss some xmits, but still have a halfway decent idea as to what's going on. Now, if the county decides that EFJ's new radios aren't up to standards, then there's the chance they could switch systems (ie. Moto Astro or P25 Standard), but the latest word that I'm hearing is that, as of a few months ago, they were testing a new set of radios for a potential upgrade. We shall see what happens...

AFA Salem County, I think funding may be a big sticking point as to why they're still analog. The few times I've monitored that system (usually from the Wilmington/Claymont area along the riverfront), there wasn't much action.
 

Boomeranger

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DELCOLHFC said:
I am very close to Media ( midway between Williamson Trade School and Linville Orchards )Tom
Tom,

OT but I was at Linvilla Orchards this morning for the Pick-Your-Own and Corn festival, picking and eating sugar corn in their fields. Ate six ears sitting in the cornfield and brought six home.

That aside, thanks for the info. I got the Philly analog before they went apco-25 and could get the Camden PD and NJ State but they're too far out of my scope of usefullness, unless I happen to be passing thru.

I'm really only interested in my backyard townships. I've used Delorme Steet Atlas in the past to pushpin crime dispatches to help reveal changes in the crime centers in DelCo and avoid them.

All the best,

Andy
Scannist
 

Avenger44

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ctrabs74 said:
Burlington County? Next time I'm in the Lima/Media area, I'll have to check that out (it was never one of my favorite systems to program). Then again, you'd probably get only one of the sites from that system; it's a weird system compared to other county TRS networks.

Well, if you can pick up Burlington County from there, you should be able to get the NJ State Police system as well.

RE: Delaware - the odd thing is I can get a faint signal outside my house (I live just north of "Uptown" West Chester), but when I get into my house, no signal. Guess I'll have to move in the future...



Chester County - reportedly, the latest rumor that I've heard is that they'll likely stick with the EFJunk system, but upgrade to digital; hopefully, the simulcast freqs will be P25 so there's an outside chance of those freqs being monitorable; the LTR Multi-Net system, as I've noted several times before can't be monitored as a LTR trunked system, but the freqs can be monitored in conventional format - you'll miss some xmits, but still have a halfway decent idea as to what's going on. Now, if the county decides that EFJ's new radios aren't up to standards, then there's the chance they could switch systems (ie. Moto Astro or P25 Standard), but the latest word that I'm hearing is that, as of a few months ago, they were testing a new set of radios for a potential upgrade. We shall see what happens...

AFA Salem County, I think funding may be a big sticking point as to why they're still analog. The few times I've monitored that system (usually from the Wilmington/Claymont area along the riverfront), there wasn't much action.





Just got my New EF Johnson Asend Radio from the County . The EF Johnson Asend Radios where made by Motorola For EF Johnson Looks like a Motorola SPECTRA . Any way I would go with a Digital Scanner . Alot of Users on P25 Astro .

Steve.
 

Boomeranger

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Well, I've gone and done it. I just ordered the bcd396T. Should have it by Friday.

It appears to be as state-of-the-art as it gets. Virtual banks being a key factor, and APCO-25 the other!

I'd have gone with the 996 but since it doesn't run on batteries, I'm not interested.

Does it come preset with the Philly, NJ and DE trunk systems?

Thanks everybody for your advice!

I have the 396 manual pdf and will read-up in the meantime.

All the best,

Andy
Waiting...
 

ctrabs74

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Boomeranger said:
Does it come preset with the Philly, NJ and DE trunk systems?
I don't believe so. When I got my 396, the trunk systems weren't pre-set (the only Philly conventional channels that were pre-set were for Temple University); I just deleted a lot of the non-local systems to clear space for what I wanted to program in my system.
 

Boomeranger

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ctrabs74 said:
I don't believe so. When I got my 396, the trunk systems weren't pre-set (the only Philly conventional channels that were pre-set were for Temple University); I just deleted a lot of the non-local systems to clear space for what I wanted to program in my system.
Creighton Rabs,

I am in possesion of a 396T as of this morning.

I reg'd the ARC396 basic software and as I mentioned elsewhere, I'm instantly lazy.

I was dismayed to see Temple as the only (one frequency) for Philadelphia! The Uniden BUMS!!!

I have the Philly trunk system installed as ID Scan for Zone 2 with a few Philly IDs for test purposes. It took awhile to go from APCO-25 back to Mot-II to get reception with Control Channel only.

The only problem so far with the Philly system is the signal is not staying put for the duration of the comms. I'm using a cheap-o BNC antenna with the sma/bnc adapter. The system hold is 2 seconds and the channel delay is 2 seconds. I have a perfect line-of-sight to Philly even though I can't see it through the trees, etc. I guess I need the RS 800mHz antenna.

No close call, search, priorty currently on.

How do you have your Philly trunk system settings set?

Thanks and all the best,

Andy
 
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