Getting a digital signal on an analog scanner?

7Seas

Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
12
Location
Essex County, ON
Hello,

The city of Windsor's Fire and Rescue uses P25. On my BC125AT, I can receive some type of EMS channel at frequency 142.3650. Sometimes I can listen to it and other times, it's just digital noise.

Why is this signal transmitting in both analog and digital if Windsor's Emergency Services are P25? I'm happy to hear it, but it's so annoying to have to lock or unlock the channel on my scanner as it bounces between the two.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Chris
 

7Seas

Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
12
Location
Essex County, ON
Hi Matt,

Thanks for this info. So the MOH frequency (apparently Essex) is dispatched through Windsor's digital system?

I'm slowly starting to understand how everything works.

Chris
 

mbstone99

Member
Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
1,380
Location
Hamilton, Ontario

torontokris

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 22, 2008
Messages
1,699
Location
Toronto Canada
Why is this signal transmitting in both analog and digital if Windsor's emergency services are P25? I'm happy to hear it but it's so annoying to have to lock or unlock the channel on my scanner as it bounces between the two.
It's a trunking system (basic terms shares a set of frequencies for many different talkgroups)
One time you may hear EMS, the next MTO, then the next OPP (in your case with an analog radio just the digital noise)

EMS on Bell FleetNet is not P25, they are analog
 

7Seas

Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
12
Location
Essex County, ON
Thanks for the clarification. I really could benefit from a digital handheld model over my BC 125AT so I could monitor the EMS channels in Essex County. I was able to match them up by cross-referencing the frequencies listed in the database with the the FleetNet tower map. The 125 is really a great beginner model to learn from but I already want a better one!

Chris
 

mrweather

Member
Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
1,024
Another option could be to listen to the vehicular repeater frequencies (410-413 MHz range; see the RR database for specifics). They will always be analog; however, the range is limited so you'll only hear ambulance units within a 1-2 km of your location.
 

torontokris

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 22, 2008
Messages
1,699
Location
Toronto Canada
Thanks for the clarification. I really could benefit from a digital handheld model over my BC125at so I could monitor the EMS channels in Essex county. I was able to match them up by cross-referencing the frequencies listed in the database with the the FleetNet tower map. The 125 is really a great beginner model to learn from but I already want a better one!

Chris
For EMS you can search for a cheap used ANALOG TRUNKING scanner like the 246T. Some people will sell them off cheap to go digital/OPP.
If you get an older radio ensure it trunks VHF with custom band plan (older first generation trunking scanners may not trunk VHF - like Pro-90 etc).

The 125AT was more meant for aircraft monitoring. You could also go with the 325p2 (same case/layout) but digital phase 2 and much more pricey.
 

Gymbag

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 12, 2004
Messages
268
Location
Oxford County
Windsor EMS is dispatched by Wallaceburg CACC I do believe. You might want to try the mobile repeater freqs for both the Ministry of Health and the OPP
 

7Seas

Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2020
Messages
12
Location
Essex County, ON
I appreciated all the helps and comments. Using the FleetNet map and the RR database, I put in the 5-6 frequencies from each tower into a separate bank on my scanner. (Windsor, Essex, Doyle (Chatham), and Wall (Wallaceburg). It's more manageable now to get around the digital signal as I have more control by either doing a quick shut off of the channel or put on a hold and manually scroll to the next channel. I also put the different tower frequencies back to back from one bank (up to 50 in each) leading to the next. E.g., Bank 4...channel 45, 46, 47, 48, 49 and 50 and then in Bank 5... channels 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 (for the next tower). This way I can scroll through manually if need be.

In the database, it'll show the MOH talk groups and give them names such as EMS Dispatch 1, 2, 3 and Tac 1, 2, 3, etc...
I know that in a trunking system, the computer assigns the talk groups to whatever channel is available. When I manually entered each frequency, I want to be able to identify which one is which (scanner has alpha tagging) but perhaps that's not possible knowing how the system works, especially for an analog scanner like my BC125AT. I also just picked up a new antenna (Diamond RH77CA) so I'm enjoying the improved reception.

As well, I entered the MOH vehicle repeater frequencies (Thanks Gymbag). How are these different than the Tac 1, 2, 3 channels?

Chris
 

torontokris

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 22, 2008
Messages
1,699
Location
Toronto Canada
You could alpha tag a frequency like freq 1,2,3 etc but you can't alpha tag a talkgroup as EMS, etc on your scanner. One transmission could be EMS, the next OPP on a certain frequency.

Vehicle Repeaters are in simple terms, an antenna to better hit the tower. You will only hear them if a vehicle is within a couple km of you. You will not hear all the action.

Look for a cheap trunking scanner like BC246T and you can scan it properly with talkgroups etc .
 
Top