Help a n00b program a BC898T correctly?

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Kumba

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Aight, so, I grabs me one of these scanners off of Amazon, and just got it in today. Trying to lock onto a trunk frequency for the local emergency services (police, fire, etc...), but I'm missing something here. For starters, I'm completly new to the field, hoping to use a scanner to learn and one day maybe jumping into the whole getting a license thing.

So, I dug up my county's info on this site:
http://www.radioreference.com/apps/db/?sid=2847

Played with the scanner a little bit, then hard reset it a few times to start from scratch, added just my area's control channel (sounds like an idling motor, etc..), set the CC plan to "2", based on data from this site:
http://scannersoft.com/control_channel_only.htm

And then hit "SCAN", then "SRC" (for searching active talk groups), and well, it's locking onto what appear to be the IDs of my county sheriff and the local state police barracks, but I'm hearing what sounds like....gibberish? Hard to say really. Static, a little bit, some kind of vibrating noise, etc.... Almost, alllllmost, you hear what sounds like some kind of human chatter at random. Might they be encrypting their comms or something? Or have I not programmed this right?

I'll keep searching, but if someone happens to have an idea what I'm doing wrong (if I am) before I find a solution in the almighty Google, do enlighten!

Thanks!
 

n2mdk

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It's not gibberish it's digital with one encrypted TGIDs for the Sheriff. That scanner can't handle digital so it can't work no the system you posted except for a few of the Charles County Services Talkgroups. If you look you will see under Mode D for digital, E for Encrypted and A for Analog.That scanner can only handle the analog.
 

Kumba

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n2mdk said:
It's not gibberish it's digital with one encrypted TGIDs for the Sheriff. That scanner can't handle digital so it can't work no the system you posted except for a few of the Charles County Services Talkgroups. If you look you will see under Mode D for digital, E for Encrypted and A for Analog.That scanner can only handle the analog.
Ah ha! That would indeed explain things. I knew this sounded way too much like a data stream, but I wasn't sure if I was bouncing off the control channel or not or something.

Hmm, so if I wanted a system to listen to both analog and digital, is there another Uniden unit I should target? Still got the box and everything for this unit, so I should still be able to exchange it.

Or is there another way I might go about this? Got this to track both the local police chatter and for when the Skywarn net goes active (summer is coming, after all...)

Thanks!
 

n2mdk

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Since you went for a base/mobile type scanner the Uniden would be the BCD996T, there is also the GRE PSR-600, these are the current models. Be prepared for sticker shock when pricing digital capable scanners.
 

Kumba

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n2mdk said:
Since you went for a base/mobile type scanner the Uniden would be the BCD996T, there is also the GRE PSR-600, these are the current models. Be prepared for sticker shock when pricing digital capable scanners.
Yeah, I already saw the price of the BCD-996T. Ouchie. The BCD-396T isn't much friendlier.

Hmm, looking at the other frequencies, is it possible my county is also broadcasting analog on some other frequencies? I looked at some of the other info pages and added those frequencies to a different bank, but it doesn't seem to be getting anything on them. Doesn't seem to be any correlation I can discern on what channel in digital might equate to the analog variant.

I guess if the police didn't want average joe to listen in, switching over to digital is one way of doing it :)


Edit: Hmm, plugged in a number of the 155* and 866/867/868 frequencies listed as being "FM", and not getting anything but static hiss. It jumps at random to a different bank, but it's all static. Maybe they've gone 100% digital?
 
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