Hardware-Based SlavedScan?

Status
Not open for further replies.

aaknitt

Member
Feed Provider
Joined
Aug 27, 2005
Messages
1,264
Hey everyone,

I'm wondering if there's any interest in a hardware-based version of SlavedScan. What I have in mind are small microcontroller boards that would talk to the scanners via their serial port. The boards would talk to each other over an I2C data bus. The communication on the I2C bus would ensure that no two scanners on the bus are every stopped on the same frequency or talkgroup. The boards could also act as a serial port passthrough to a PC so that the scanners could still be used with PC control programs while operating in the "SlavedScan" mode.

I was initially thinking about implementing this on the TI Launchpad platform since they're so stinking cheap ($4.30 each!). However, after doing some initial testing on that platform, I've found that those devices are a little too barebones to make it easy to do this. I think it could be done, but it would take more effort that I want to expend right now. Instead, I'm looking at the Arduino-compatible Uno32 from Digilent. Each board is $26, but it would be much easier to implement since the hardware already has two serial ports and an I2C port. Total cost would be higher since a plug-in board with an RS232 driver would be required.

So, here are my questions:

  1. Is this something you'd be interested in?
  2. If so, at what price point would it be worth it to you? (note - I'm not planning on offering these for sale to make money. All hardware design and software would be open-sourced so anyone could build one.)
  3. What brand and type of scanner(s) would you want to see support for?


Here's my initial thoughts on how the development could proceed:

  1. Get basic functionality working on stand-alone Uniden DMA scanners
  2. Add "PC passthrough" function to allow computer control while attached
  3. Add support for other scanner models/brands (although I don't have any non-Uniden scanners at the moment)

I don't think this would be terribly hard to do, but I don't have a huge need for it myself, so I probably won't put much effort into it unless it's something other people would actually put to use. Any thoughts are welcome.

Thanks,

Andy
 

aaknitt

Member
Feed Provider
Joined
Aug 27, 2005
Messages
1,264
That's what a lot of people do today. However, that means that when scanner 1 is stopped on a frequency, you can't hear anything on any other channels programmed into that scanner even if scanner 2 is not busy. Let's say scanner 1 is set up for police and scanner 2 for fire. If there are two fire transmissions and no police transmissions taking place, you'll only hear one fire transmission and nothing on the police scanner. By having the scanners work together, you can program them the same (or differently, it doesn't matter), and decrease the probability of missing transmissions.

Andy
 

aaknitt

Member
Feed Provider
Joined
Aug 27, 2005
Messages
1,264
For what it's worth, I think it would be really cool if something like this was incorporated into running multiple instances of FreeScan :wink:

Andy
 

aaknitt

Member
Feed Provider
Joined
Aug 27, 2005
Messages
1,264
Some guy on here was doing this with software a while back.
If you're talking about the program called SlavedScan, that was me that put it out.

A hardware-based approach would allow this to be done in a mobile environment, allow a large number of scanner to be used together (rather than just two) and allow the use of any scanner control program that the user prefers. When using the SlavedScan software, you can't another scanner control program at the same time.

Andy
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top