GPS Location problem with BCD536HP Need some help.

Room4Me

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Jun 21, 2017
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Bremerton WA
Hello,

After much research, I purchased a BCD536HP scanner just over a month ago. I found it pretty easy to sort out what I want to scan and create favorites. That all works perfectly.

I plan to take a trip across my state, and want to use the GPS location feature. I own two GPS receivers, which output NMEA data. The one I want to interface is a Garmin Etrex Legend. According to other posts here, the Legend is on the list of GPS receivers which should be compatible. I have the factory serial data cable. While I haven't used the serial connection directly on my computer, as it has no serial ports, I have used a serial-USB cable and can see the NMEA data string in a terminal program just fine. I rang out the Garmin serial cable, to confirm the pin out. I know the GPS is set to NMEA data in/out.

The problem is my scanner will not see the GPS.
I have set the scanner to 4800Baud. The GPS is at 4800Baud.
Using the auto locate feature, it will run, but reports no GPS found.
Just to rule out the pin out issue, I have a serial break out pair and I wired a null modem, with no change.
As noted, I can see the data stream on a simple GPS terminal. I can confirm the Baud rate is 4800.


One of the reasons for purchasing this scanner was the GPS location scanning, and the fact that research indicated that I should be able to connect an Etrex, Legend GPS to the receiver.

I have spent several hours looking for any on-line posts, but unfortunately, I have found nothing.

I really don't want to buy a UNIDEN GPS receiver, as I'm not 100% certain the serial port is working properly at this point. I realize I can buy a UNIDEN GPS on Amazon at no risk, but that seems a bit shady, if I return it because the port doesn't work and my existing GPS seemingly would work, with a good port.

I understand UNIDEN, probalby has little to no interest in assisting users, with a competitors GPS interface, as they want to sell theirs. Is there a means to test the serial port, to rule out a bad port?

Any assistance would be appreciated.

Mike
 

wowologist

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I remember working on one of these with that very same problem till I got frustrated and thought no way they couldn't have actually done that.....for some reason they have RX and TX I/O on the serial side of the unit switched. Since you already have a breakout board wire it backwards and viola.

And you can also peruse: BCD436HP GPS input pin-out
 
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phask

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Do not use auto locate, it has nothing to do with GPS.

I can't help, but I did get a Garmin GPS 60 to work. I did not make any cables, but it was a cluster%^$# of adapters and factory cables. It's been too long to remember how. I currently have a Garmin puck in use (it may have that same cluster of cables) it's been behind the dash for several years.

I also have a Uniden setup for a SDS100 and a Uniden GPS for a SDS200 FWIW.
 

N9PBD

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You might try sending an IM (Conversations is what it's called here) to Jon Wienke (jonwienke) here on RR. He's probably go more GPS knowledge with Uniden scanners in his little finger than most anybody else. He can help you figure it out, if anybody can.
 

ofd8001

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It goes way way back in time, but I remember using a couple of Garmin Etrex Legends and they did a decent job once I got them configured. I believe I also had to confirm some settings in the device for baud rate as well as the scanner.

I went from these devices to the actual Uniden GPS device because I had to replace batteries quite often. I could get the 12V cable, but that would have been a lot of cables to fool with.

If you have any type of Virtual Control software, you can use the rear port for this to confirm whether the port is functioning.
 

phask

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There are a couple (or more) settings on most Garmins that have to be correct. Just setting to output NEMA is one, then Baud rate of course. The type of GPS sentence or lat/lon config.
 

Room4Me

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Jun 21, 2017
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Bremerton WA
I remember working on one of these with that very same problem till I got frustrated and thought no way they couldn't have actually done that.....for some reason they have RX and TX I/O on the serial side of the unit switched. Since you already have a breakout board wire it backwards and viola.

And you can also peruse: BCD436HP GPS input pin-out
Thanks. Will re-visit that and see if it works.

Mike
 

Room4Me

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Jun 21, 2017
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Bremerton WA
You might try sending an IM (Conversations is what it's called here) to Jon Wienke (jonwienke) here on RR. He's probably go more GPS knowledge with Uniden scanners in his little finger than most anybody else. He can help you figure it out, if anybody can.

Thanks all.

I tried all the recommendations and nothing worked. I changed the scanner message type, I tried the 3 different, but similar message types, hours, min, sec etc. on the GPS, with and without the crossed RX TX serial set up. Tried it with and without the full database thinking it could not find a location, in my favorites and NADA.

I have no knowledge on the Virtual Control software. Does anyone have a freeware or demo to recommend? It would really be a butt kicker if the port were the problem after all this effort.

I'l see if I can get an IM to John Wienke and see if he can help.
 

ofd8001

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I have no knowledge on the Virtual Control software. Does anyone have a freeware or demo to recommend? It would really be a butt kicker if the port were the problem after all this effort.
Proscan or ARCXT Pro have virtual control capabilities. You can download trial versions, thought I don't know if the trial version will do V/C.
 

Room4Me

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Jun 21, 2017
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Bremerton WA
Good day all. Well the GPS connection problem is resolved. Mark it up to pilot error. Phask's comment about auto locate NOT being part of the GPS process, is what alerted me to the problem. I went back to the basics, and started fresh. I think the problem was, I didn't notice the GPS indicator on the display. Duh! I assumed, through this process, that the "Auto Locate" feature was what got things going.

It's too bad Uniden doesn't have much in the way of instruction on this, as it would have likely saved me several hours of messing around with this when I could have simply plugged and played.

No need to use the null modem, crossover. The serial connection directly from the GPS works perfectly!

Thanks to all who commented. Hopefully this thread will help another new user!
 
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