DPS Region 2 P25 VHF Dispatch channels

Techholder88

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Joined
Apr 18, 2008
Messages
19
I'm sure I'm late to the party to ask this question but I will ask here anyways, are the Houston Dispatch VHF P25 Channels in use in the Houston area at all? I used to hear them daily on the dispatch side up until about early 2019 maybe? I did a search and in previous threads they stated that 700/800 Mhz would be the primary system to be used when possible, and I hear the units loud and clear on the TXWARN side (no worries there). I've heard the units key up in some of the rural areas but I'm also aware that depending on which radio system their vehicle is equipped with (I.E. dual band APX series type radio vs. single band VHF plus another), can/will determine whether they use the VHF side or the 7/800 side, also as well as whichever law enforcement agency they are talking with (local PD or Sheriffs office). Just wondering if anyone else has heard the dispatch side in the last few months in the Houston area on the VHF side, just in the middle of planning my at home radio stack.
 

tunnelmot

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Joined
May 9, 2007
Messages
260
Location
Conroe, TX
I have a clean dedicated Astro Saber VHF that was dedicated just for DPS. It got to the point where I didn't hear anything and haven't turned it on in months. Same experience as you. Rural traffic here and there, but I pretty much just migrated all my Region 2 to my TXWarn radios.

Also have noticed for a while that a few local units don't even have their VHF whips, just the NMO coil base with no whip...multiple different units. It's my opinion that VHF is basically a fallback or failsafe at this point. It was nice when traffic was multicast on both systems.

I have noticed in other areas of the state, newer units still are getting VHF whips installed so I suppose that VHF still plays a part in their comm plan.
 

racehorse5000

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Sep 9, 2015
Messages
14
DPS radios used lately are Motorola APX7500 VHF + 700-800mhz or APX8500 all band . Radios use one all band antenna.
 

Stephen

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Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
476
Location
Dallas, TX
To add to the answer about antennas, many of the troopers that are in a primary 700mhz area will take off their VHF whips so they can park their vehicles in garages. Many are aware of what each antenna on the patrol vehicles is for, so once VHF is not needed for daily usage they will remove the whip until they have to travel outside of their normal area and just keep it in the back of their Tahoe.
 

tunnelmot

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Joined
May 9, 2007
Messages
260
Location
Conroe, TX
DPS radios used lately are Motorola APX7500 VHF + 700-800mhz or APX8500 all band . Radios use one all band antenna.
The units I'm referencing were not equipped with multi band antennas. Only the 7/800 meg "film can" type or 1/4 wave spike along with either a naked NMO or clipped vhf coil or vhf coil with whip removed. I have seen many units (Waco/CenTex/HOTRRS) with the multiband StiCo type or sharkfin style with vhf whip style antennas...which would make sense.
To add to the answer about antennas, many of the troopers that are in a primary 700mhz area will take off their VHF whips so they can park their vehicles in garages. Many are aware of what each antenna on the patrol vehicles is for, so once VHF is not needed for daily usage they will remove the whip until they have to travel outside of their normal area and just keep it in the back of their Tahoe.
This makes the most sense to me. And that may be what I've observed.
 

scanfan03

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Joined
Jun 2, 2003
Messages
1,668
Location
Houston, Texas
I think the UP Railroad police still use VHF to talk to the DPS dispatcher in the 2A office. Other than that, I haven't heard the dispatcher on VHF in this area (nor have I heard her say KKC588, the license for the VHF freq) in over a year.
 

Stephen

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Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
476
Location
Dallas, TX
Depending on the area, most utilize the multi band APX. In some areas where the county uses VHF or UHF they will have 2 separate VHF’s.
 

Texoma24

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Joined
Jul 19, 2019
Messages
154
Location
Don't blink, Texas
I know with region 1 I have several repeaters programmed as CQPSK instead of C4FM in my XTS1500 and I hear them fine on VHF. They have done some work out here changing repeater channels and now everything out of Garland and Texarkana show a radio ID including dispatch. Their traffic has dropped significantly lately, nothing like it used to be.
 

Stephen

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Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
476
Location
Dallas, TX
The drop in radio traffic is due to the fact that the computer system is utilized to initiate traffic stops, run checks, check on and off duty, and messaging allows communication between units. There is very little need for actual radio communications other than when a wanted person or stolen vehicle is ran, communications operators will confirm location and status of the trooper. Most of this is a good thing as it keeps the airwaves quiet for mainly actual priority traffic.
 
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