BCD536HP: How To In Sentinel?

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nydxa

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Picked up my 536 last night and loaded up the Sentinel software. Since I’ve been using Butel’s software for many years, Sentinel seems very strange. The concept of having the database program the radio seems limiting, at least for the moment. I have a few questions:
1: I have a few trunked systems that have multiple sites, not all of which are serving my area. I assume that the database loads all of the sites into the radio. How can I delete the sites that are not heard in my area? If Sentinel can’t do it, can Butel’s software do this?

2. I have several frequencies that are not in the database. How can these be manually entered into Sentinel?

3. Regarding the scanning delay parameter, I saw it offered “negative” values. What’s this about?

4. I’d like to hear from anyone who is using Butel’s software. I recall reading that it only supports 1 favorite list?
The 536 is a lot of radio to learn, so I’d like to thank all of you, in advance for responding to my questions.
 

fxdscon

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Picked up my 536 last night and loaded up the Sentinel software. Since I’ve been using Butel’s software for many years, Sentinel seems very strange. The concept of having the database program the radio seems limiting, at least for the moment. I have a few questions:
1: I have a few trunked systems that have multiple sites, not all of which are serving my area. I assume that the database loads all of the sites into the radio. How can I delete the sites that are not heard in my area? If Sentinel can’t do it, can Butel’s software do this?

2. I have several frequencies that are not in the database. How can these be manually entered into Sentinel?

3. Regarding the scanning delay parameter, I saw it offered “negative” values. What’s this about?

4. I’d like to hear from anyone who is using Butel’s software. I recall reading that it only supports 1 favorite list?
The 536 is a lot of radio to learn, so I’d like to thank all of you, in advance for responding to my questions.
Here are a couple of great resources for Sentinel.

Sentinel BCDX36HP Software Manual

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECOUceSdVCo

.
 

UPMan

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1. There are two solutions:
a) Create a Favorites List, put the system in it and only include the sites you want.
b) Use the main database and set your location. This will prevent distant sites from being scanned.

2. Create a Favorites List. Create a conventional system in the list. Put the frequencies in that system.

3. Forces the scanner to resume scanning after the set (negative) time, even if the signal is still present.
 

nydxa

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Bergen County NJ
Frequencies?

1. There are two solutions:
a) Create a Favorites List, put the system in it and only include the sites you want.
b) Use the main database and set your location. This will prevent distant sites from being scanned.
I looked in a favorite list and I don't see where each site is defined, where it lists each channel frequency? Otherwise, it's a fantastic radio!
 

fxdscon

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I looked in a favorite list and I don't see where each site is defined, where it lists each channel frequency? Otherwise, it's a fantastic radio!
Are you looking in the favorites list editor in Sentinel?

.
 

UPMan

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a. Create a trunked system.
b. In the site tab for the system, click the "+" to add a site.
 

ofd8001

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I looked in a favorite list and I don't see where each site is defined, where it lists each channel frequency? Otherwise, it's a fantastic radio!
In Sentinel, Edit Favorites List. Then highlight the system having the multiple sites. On the right pane, you'll see a tab called "Sites".

The neat thing about these scanners is that there are several ways to go about accomplishing something.

Upman's idea about the location control is the better way of doing what you wish. One thing to be mindful of depends upon your location. If your location happens to be close enough to "hear" a geopolitical entity, it could be locked out due to relative location. (You can change these values in your Favorites List in Sentinel to overcome that).

Another couple of ways to go about what you want to do, should you elect to not go the location route.

1. Go to the sites in Sentinel as described above. You can set the distant sites to be avoided.
or
2. Go to the sites and set Quick Keys for the distant sites. You can lock out these Quick Keys. Should you take your scanner to where the distant sites are location, you can unlock the Quick Keys and be scanning that area.
 

nydxa

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OK, on to my next obsticle ...
Created a Favorite list and assigned it to Quickstart key 0
The list has about 12 entries. Several of the local PD channels will not stop in scan mode, BUT, if I manually select the channel it receives them loud and clear. AVOID is not enabled.
I also tried to change "FM" to "NFM" with no different results.
Channels are both UHF and VHF

If I'm not using the favorite list, and monitor the entire database, all seems to be OK
 

ofd8001

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Unfortunately there are several things that could keep channels from being scanned, though you might be able to access them manually by scrolling through the list.

The things that come to mind are:
1. Are the Systems these are in avoided?
2. Are the Departments these are in avoided?
3. Are the System Quick Keys for these turned on?
4. Are the Department Quick Keys for these turned on?
 

phask

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What service type are the ones you created? Are those service types enabled?


OK, on to my next obsticle ...
Created a Favorite list and assigned it to Quickstart key 0
The list has about 12 entries. Several of the local PD channels will not stop in scan mode, BUT, if I manually select the channel it receives them loud and clear. AVOID is not enabled.
I also tried to change "FM" to "NFM" with no different results.
Channels are both UHF and VHF

If I'm not using the favorite list, and monitor the entire database, all seems to be OK
 

nydxa

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Joined
Mar 13, 2004
Messages
214
Location
Bergen County NJ
You guys are great!

Ofd8001&Phask
Thanks so much for your assistance.

While I am enjoying the 536, I have to say that the programming concept and the user experience using Sentinel is very confusing. While I am a “newbie” to the 536, I’ve got about 40 years of scanner experience. By profession I’m a product engineer for a major Japanese consumer electronics company. If we dared to release a digital camera with this level of complexity the customer returns would be through the roof.

“Service Types” was the culprit, all were not enabled! The conventional channels that were not stopping in scan mode belonged to local PD’s. What I discovered is that each department’s main channel was classified differently, such as” multi dispatch” and so on. At very lease, Sentinel should be smart enough to enable these dispatch types automatically when the user selects from the database.

So here is my next hurdle. I created one favorite list and I’d like the radio to start scanning that list automatically when turned on. Currently, when the radio is powered up it loads the entire database and ignores my favorite file. I got the radio to use the favorite file by assigned startup key, “0”. Now, if I hold the “0” key upon power up it boots to my favorite list. Is there some way to designate the favorite list as my starting point without having to hold the “0” key?

Next, if I create additional favorite lists, can I add them to what is actively scanning from the front key pad similar to turning on another “bank” with more traditional scanners?
 

jonwienke

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I have a few trunked systems that have multiple sites, not all of which are serving my area. I assume that the database loads all of the sites into the radio. How can I delete the sites that are not heard in my area?
This is done when you set your location and range. Once the scanner knows your location and how far out you want to listen, everything outside of that gets filtered out automatically.
 

UPMan

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Is there some way to designate the favorite list as my starting point without having to hold the “0” key?
Yes. From the scanner menu:
MENU --> Set Scan Selection --> Select Lists to Monitor --> toggle "Full Database" to "Off" by pressing E while Full Database is highlighted.

In Sentinel: Edit the profile (pencil/paper icon) and in the Scan Selection tab uncheck "Monitor Full Database."
 

phask

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Thanks

I hope you don't work for Nikon :) I find their NX and other software abhorrent and seemingly negatively intuitive. Same with their DSLR. Having used them since their Dx70 days.

I personally find Sentinel about a 3 on the annoying scale, though in my first week of use it was probably a 12:)

I detest software that veers from the MS / Windows standards, at least if it's running under Win.


Ofd8001&Phask
Thanks so much for your assistance.

While I am enjoying the 536, I have to say that the programming concept and the user experience using Sentinel is very confusing. While I am a “newbie” to the 536, I’ve got about 40 years of scanner experience. By profession I’m a product engineer for a major Japanese consumer electronics company. If we dared to release a digital camera with this level of complexity the customer returns would be through the roof.

“Service Types” was the culprit, all were not enabled! The conventional channels that were not stopping in scan mode belonged to local PD’s. What I discovered is that each department’s main channel was classified differently, such as” multi dispatch” and so on. At very lease, Sentinel should be smart enough to enable these dispatch types automatically when the user selects from the database.

So here is my next hurdle. I created one favorite list and I’d like the radio to start scanning that list automatically when turned on. Currently, when the radio is powered up it loads the entire database and ignores my favorite file. I got the radio to use the favorite file by assigned startup key, “0”. Now, if I hold the “0” key upon power up it boots to my favorite list. Is there some way to designate the favorite list as my starting point without having to hold the “0” key?

Next, if I create additional favorite lists, can I add them to what is actively scanning from the front key pad similar to turning on another “bank” with more traditional scanners?
 

joeuser

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Feb 9, 2014
Messages
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Location
North Central Kansas
I think you should watch the many videos out there on the radio & the software. It helped me get the fundamentals & made a huge difference in my enjoyment instead of frustration with the unit. Its increasingly hard to just jump in & go these days.
 

UPMan

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OT (a bit), but I'd be happy if the camera I bought this year from a major Japanese consumer electronics company (not Nikon) would simply snap the shutter when I press the shutter button. I still haven't figured out what setting I've not got correctly set (and I've been using that brand and the brand it used to be before purchased by the current brand since 1981...).
 

jonwienke

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On a semi-related note, is there any way to assign a quick key to the Main Database?
 

wa2sqq

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Aug 13, 2014
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Location
Bergen County, NJ USA
All
I just wanted to say Thanks to all who assisted me during my acclimation period to the 536. I’ve been posting under the screen name NYDXA which was an account created for our weekly scanner net. Due to personal commitments that prevented us from continuing the net, it ended last year. It’s time I open my own account, so hence forth I’ll be using this account. The 536 is presenting me with some challenges (especially trying to fully understand the concept of all these quick keys, system keys and so on) but I’m slowly working through it. I’d like to reciprocate, so if anyone has any digital photography questions, please contact me!

Bob
 
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