Digital Scanners PSR-500 vs. BCD-396t

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spooney

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I bought a 500 and I'm happy with it. So much so that I sold my 396 and bought a 600. I still have a 996 and it always worked better than the 396. The display and alpha tagging is much better on the Uniden and the 100 SQK verses 22 scan lists on the GRE is the only big difference between them. GRE has NAC code feature and Uniden does not. I like the battery holder feature better on the GRE, but if size is important then the 396 would be what you want.
 

W9NES

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I prefer the Uniden Bc 396T handheld as I own (1) and I own (5) of the Uniden Bc 996t's.I have never seen a GRE scanner on a assignment desk at the TV stations here in Indianapolis.Most of the assignement desk have the Uniden Bc 996T. I just programed 4 scanners for WIBC FM 93.1(2 Uniden Bc 396t's and 2Uniden Bc 996T's) for the station to use to listen to scanner traffic.The Indianapolis Star News our local paper also uses the Uniden line of scanners.I will allways buy the Uniden Line of scanners and have never had a problem with getting help from them as far as a problem or programming.Thank You, Ham Radio Operator Tim DeLong W9NES, Freelance Assignment Editor.
 

RoninJoliet

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I agree that "better" is not a good reference but, here in ILL on the Starcom 700/800 digital system still using the "older" firmware on my 396, it does not do as good of job decoding the digital as my GRE500, to my ears the GRE500 digital audio is much cleaner and less dropouts...I have not upgraded the 396 because of local reports of much poorer performance...I much prefer the "SQK's and GQK';s than the odd #ing of the GRE500 SLists, each scanner has its own special features....My Opinion.....PS: I have visited your "great state " of Indiana with my PRO96 and the digital was fantastic....
 

GTO_04

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I don't care what the local newspapers use. They just chose what they were familiar with and nothing wrong with that. But their selection is not definitive. I own both, and PSR-500 beats the 396 easily on the digital trunked systems used here in central Indiana.

GTO_04
 

W9NES

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GTO 04, Thanks for your input but there is nothing wrong with using the Uniden Bc 396T and the Uniden 996T as I own 1 of the 396't and I own (5) of the Uniden 996T's.They are very easy to use and program.If you want a radio that will take up a lot of time programming mostly by computer and taking more time required vs the 396T and the 996T be my guest!The Uniden 396T and the 996T are used on the Assignment desk at all Indianapolis TV stations and I still have not seen any GRE radios on there desk.You know it seems funny that News Directors and Assignment Editors alike know what radios that want to use as so far it is "Uniden" and not "GRE'' As far as your comment about the Indianapolis Star using Uniden scanners they use the same scanners that another TV station here in Indianapolis use and I know that person who programed the scanners for them and they like them and have had no porblems with them!
 

kb9tfh

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Well that is wierd... A buddy of mine works for WTHR - NBC and he swears by GRE in fact he says that he would never use a uniden again.... I dont know but what i do know is that there stations have the resources to pay for what ever is the best.

I am not concerned about what sits on peoples desks. I was just wondering what radio follows the Safe-T net the best....

Thanks
 

JoeyC

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W9NES said:
Assignment desk at all Indianapolis TV stations and I still have not seen any GRE radios on there desk.You know it seems funny that News Directors and Assignment Editors alike know what radios that want to use as so far it is "Uniden" and not "GRE''
To the assignment desk and news director, a scanner is a tool. They are not experts on "scanners" they are journalists. Just like the average cop hasn't a clue the difference between conventional radio, trunked Motorola or EDACS, the news folks are concerned about having tools that work and are reliable and can give them the information they desire. They are not concerned with the idiosyncrasies of Uniden vs GRE scanners. They would use whatever works, whatever they know or whatever someone recommends. The fact that you programmed the scanners for them should give you a clue to that.

That said, I am sure both scanners have their strong points and their weaknesses. I own a PSR500 now and think its the best portable scanner I've owned. Never owned a BC396 but I've owned 6 other Unidens and they are fine scanners as well.

Just because the news department at the TV station uses one model of scanner doesn't give it anymore credibility than the other brands. They'd be happy with either model given the opportunity.
 

jerk

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kb9tfh said:
Well that is wierd... A buddy of mine works for WTHR - NBC and he swears by GRE in fact he says that he would never use a uniden again.... I dont know but what i do know is that there stations have the resources to pay for what ever is the best.

I am not concerned about what sits on peoples desks. I was just wondering what radio follows the Safe-T net the best....

Thanks
For audio clarity, and roaming capability I would say the GRE-500
Now, it is limited in the number of sites you can program in one "list" because it allows 32 control channels. It's bigger and requires one more battery than the Uniden.

But my Uniden has had sound issues since I got it, and it still does with the latest firmware upgrade. Second, when safe-T rebands, say tomorrow, you can reprogram the GRE and be back in business in less than 30 minutes. The BCD395 takes forever to get a firmware upgrade, and it could take up to six months before receiving a firmware update that solves the rebanding issue. GRE is good to go now, and their firmware updates up been extremely timely.
 

W9NES

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This is the way I look at it.I will never buy any GRE porduct.If you wish to buy a GRE porduct that is your money wasted!I will allways buy Uniden products becuse they work and most Newsdirectors and Assignement Editors do know what they want to buy and they buy the Uniden line becuase they know they can hear what is going on and can get there infomation quickly to get a reporter and a crew together and send them to the scene and be first with "Breaking News".In the media that is what it is all about. Who has "Breaking News" first and the right scanner does help them get the story over the other station who does not have "a clue what is going on"
 

JoeyC

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W9NES said:
This is the way I look at it.I will never buy any GRE porduct.If you wish to buy a GRE porduct that is your money wasted!I will allways buy Uniden products becuse they work and most Newsdirectors and Assignement Editors do know what they want to buy and they buy the Uniden line becuase they know they can hear what is going on and can get there infomation quickly to get a reporter and a crew together and send them to the scene and be first with "Breaking News".In the media that is what it is all about. Who has "Breaking News" first and the right scanner does help them get the story over the other station who does not have "a clue what is going on"
That is your opinion and your right. However you have no case in stating that Uniden scanners will get you to breaking news stories quicker than a GRE will. :roll:
 

khthomas1008

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We use 6 Uniden 996 scanners at WTHR.
Kyle Thomas
Assignment Editor--WTHR


Well that is wierd... A buddy of mine works for WTHR - NBC and he swears by GRE in fact he says that he would never use a uniden again.... I dont know but what i do know is that there stations have the resources to pay for what ever is the best.

I am not concerned about what sits on peoples desks. I was just wondering what radio follows the Safe-T net the best....

Thanks
 

jerk

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khthomas1008 said:
We use 6 Uniden 996 scanners at WTHR.
Kyle Thomas
Assignment Editor--WTHR
Well that is wierd... A buddy of mine works for WTHR - NBC and he swears by GRE in fact he says that he would never use a uniden again.... I dont know but what i do know is that there stations have the resources to pay for what ever is the best.

I am not concerned about what sits on peoples desks. I was just wondering what radio follows the Safe-T net the best....

Thanks
And THAT is the right question, either one will do want you want... which is receive Safe-T system. The GRE is easier to handle with one hand, the BCD takes two hands for some functions. either one will receive the system fine, but in audio quality, I think the GRE would win.

Download the manuals for both and read up, see which makes more sense for you.
 
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W9NES

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The Uniden Bc 396T and the Uniden Bc 996T will both work on the new MECA Digitial System 1 and 2 and will also work on Safe-t .If you will look at these features you will see why I stay with Uniden.Point 1-As far as a Computer programed radio the GRE Radio is ok if you wish to spend a lot of time porgraming the radio by computer.Point 2-If you will look at the Specs of the Uniden 396T and the Uniden 996T the Unidens blow away the GRE by a long shot.When I went out to buy my radios I looked at the Specs for each radio and the Uniden was the "Better rated radio" vs the GRE. Look at the Specs for youself and then you will find out for yourself which radio is "The best"
 

radioscan

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W9NES said:
The Uniden Bc 396T and the Uniden Bc 996T will both work on the new MECA Digitial System 1 and 2 and will also work on Safe-t .
The PSR500/works on them as well and provides better digital audio output than any Uniden.

W9NES said:
If you will look at these features you will see why I stay with Uniden.Point 1-As far as a Computer programed radio the GRE Radio is ok if you wish to spend a lot of time porgraming the radio by computer.
It doesn't take me very long to create and upload a file to my PSR-500. Also unless you have actually programmed a PSR-500 you cannot quantify your point. If you are saying that programming the Unidens
by hand is the way to go, then I hope you have good medical insurance for the Carpal Tunnel Syndrome you are going to develope!

W9NES said:
Point 2-If you will look at the Specs of the Uniden 396T and the Uniden 996T the Unidens blow away the GRE by a long shot.When I went out to buy my radios I looked at the Specs for each radio and the Uniden was the "Better rated radio" vs the GRE. Look at the Specs for youself and then you will find out for yourself which radio is "The best"
The new PSR-500/600 is now one generation up from your older 396/996, and as others have stated and I can quantify, the digital audio is far superior to any of the Unidens.

Also as other have stated, but you choose to ignore with your unobjective views, there is no better among them. Each offer features different from the others,
giving us consumers a wonderful choice among great products, please just leave it at that.
 

SCPD

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You know that in some ways they all suck the Radio shack and the GRE and the unidens all do not decode the new form of Amature Radio D-STAR the new digital form of communication in Ham radio and with that said none of them are up to date as far as MECA they all will do it and the Unidens I have with the new firmware work just fine. One thing with the radio shack is that none of them do I Call Gre is good for a lot of computer stuff but I would go with a brand that is well known and proven witch is Uniden Bearcat.
 

radioscan

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w8fcc said:
. One thing with the radio shack is that none of them do I Call Gre is good for a lot of computer stuff but I would go with a brand that is well known and proven witch is Uniden Bearcat.
You can apply that statement to earlier GRE produced PRO models, but not to the current GRE PSR models.
The GRE PSR-500/600 is not "Radio Shack", but it does I Calls or Private Calls very well. Unlike the Pro-96 it also does LTR and 700 MHz.

You all need to realize there are new models of GRE in town now, the Pro-96 is older technology. Make the comparisons with the new PSRs not the Pro-96.
 

SCPD

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radioscan said:
You can apply that statement to earlier GRE produced PRO models, but not to the current GRE PSR models.
The GRE PSR-500/600 is not "Radio Shack", but it does I Calls or Private Calls very well. Unlike the Pro-96 it also does LTR and 700 MHz.

You all need to realize there are new models of GRE in town now, the Pro-96 is older technology. Make the comparisons with the new PSRs not the Pro-96.

I know the GRE is not radio shack and GRE does do I call but the rad shacks dont as far as D Star not even the new GRE's do that
 
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