HP-1 Disappointments continue.

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WouffHong

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Have been a Uniden champion for many years, and thought the HP-1 would live up to as promoted, but wish I had waited longer and lost less money on it instead of having paid the full release version price.

The overall concept is wonderful, but the disappointments others have expressed are echoed here also.

The recent complaint touched upon seems to be in engineering limbo and still a problem, viz; I keep mine on AC power supply most of the time set it to local (strong) Weather Alert Frequency of 162.400 whenever not scanning.

In this Tornado Alley terminus area (NW GA), the warnings come through with consistent 5 Bars solid copy on 162.400 MHz. But when we leave our mountain home for a number of hours, I turn it fully off (All Off) and put it out of sight. - Bad idea..

2-5 hours later, we return and I plug it back in to AC Power, the Weather Alert Frequency has switched to the ZERO-Bars 162.55 WX Channel and if I don't keep it plugged in or the power goes off for even a short time, we NO LONGER receive alerts unless I go back through the menus to put it on the 162.400 local station. A few more power glitchs during a storm and we have to KEEP going back into the menu System to get any weather. (Yes, i have set the local counties in as valid alert areas) - this is a serious problem and needs to be fixed ASAP as Spring hits. To have to use an old Midland WX radio instead of my ~$600 investment is bloody sad.. :(

While on this "rant" - Even though the HP-1 is at full charge when removing power as above, it comes back on telling me it needs a "13 hr- 5 9 Min" charge ALWAYS when power applied - This is a consistent "unexplained anomaly". (Our classic excuse at NASA! ;-) ) :roll:

Uniden: You almost had a real winner in the HP-1 - Let's get these real-world problems resolved. It has the potential to be a true winner, but we paid a lot to be a virtual "BETA" test crowd.. ;-)

TNX es 73 (No"s") ;-)

Wouff
 

kruser

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Well I didn't purchase a $500 dollar scanner to be a weather alert receiver :roll: I do fully agree on the battery charge thing though.
I use dedicated weather alert receivers for weather alerts. They are made for that specific purpose and they do it well.

For the battery charging issue, it will also ask for a full charge after updating the database.
I think they could have designed in a battery monitor that would remember the last charge and also know if you actually used the radio off the grid. It would also detect a battery removal and if it sees that, then go ahead and offer a full charge again as it would have no way of knowing what you put back in the battery compartment.
But if the batteries are not removed when it is unplugged from AC power, it should know that and not nag you with wanting to charge unless it also sees some actual runtime on the batteries before it was externally powered again.

I myself would really like a setting to turn off the nag completely when AC power is applied. Then offer a menu option to start a manual but still timed charge if I need it. Of course that would require the user to turn the radio on in order to select charge mode.
Better yet would be a default option that the user can set for when it detects external power being applied. An option set in the menus that will still bring up the yes/no charge buttons upon external power input but with a default action of yes or no and then it times out after 5 seconds in the mode you set via the menu structure.

It is rather stupid that it hangs at a user input screen when you plug it into external power regardless if it is off or on. It should default to your mode of choice after a few seconds.
Now if adding these simple features would also add another $100 dollars onto the cost then forget about it! Something tells me it could have been done for pennies and a little code in the firmware though. It may already have enough battery monitoring smarts as it is now and this could be added via firmware alone.

I'm pretty sure this has been asked for before (many times in many threads) so maybe one day we will see it if it is possible.
 
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phask

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FWIW - I also would NEVER use a scanner as my sole WX monitor, there are just way too many better, cheaper, etc. dedicated units.

Only time I might id if I had it in a hotel room or some such.

Personally, I've had no issues with the battery issue.
 

kruser

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FWIW - I also would NEVER use a scanner as my sole WX monitor, there are just way too many better, cheaper, etc. dedicated units.

Only time I might id if I had it in a hotel room or some such.

Personally, I've had no issues with the battery issue.
Yep, the battery thing is really not an issue, it is more of an annoyance.
I find the HP-1 is pretty good at remembering where it was last when you turn it back on but I guess it sucks at remembering the weather settings. What the OP described does sound like a poor design in firmware maybe. I'd have never noticed it though as I've never used a scanner as a weather alert receiver. Now I do use scanners for monitoring the NOAA channels and the actual weather from time to time plus the NOAA channels can be useful for testing antennas or looking to see if the VHF band is open for good ground wave conditions.

I did once test the weather alert feature on the HP-1 as I noticed it does not let you enter the actual SAME code. In my area we have St. Louis City and St. Louis County. Each has their own SAME codes but no way of knowing which code would trip the HP-1 if an alert is issued. St. Louis City is NOT in any county and the HP-1 does not have a listing for the SAME code for St. Louis City, it only lists the county. Someone at the actual HomePatrol forum confirmed it would alert for St. Louis, MO with either SAME code but I'm not sure that person was affiliated with Uniden or not and I've never tried to test the feature. It would be very rare that the city gets an alert and the county of the same name does not. I do hope it does alert for both though for those that really use it as a weather alert radio here! Then they keep saying they are going to split the SAME codes for the county some day. I wonder how the HP-1 handles those counties with split codes? I assume it works just like it does for the city and county here. It would seem it would have been better to let the user enter the actual numeric code instead of going on the units internal SAME code database. If I'm not mistaken, the SAME code database is hard coded in the radio and cannot be changed but I bet it can via firmware if the need ever comes up.

I can also see the WX alert being useful for those on the road a lot as long as they remember to change the alert area as they travel. I don't think an attached GPS unit will change the SAME code area for you automatically like it does the database you are monitoring. So yes, the WX alert feature could come in handy for those that travel and don't want to bother with more than one device.
I've never seen a GPS controlled WX Alert radio yet! Something that auto sets the SAME codes based on GPS readings and a user selectable radius in miles from your current location. Somebody probably makes one though.
 
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WouffHong

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Well I didn't purchase a $500 dollar scanner to be a weather alert receiver :roll: I do fully agree on the battery charge thing though.
I use dedicated weather alert receivers for weather alerts. They are made for that specific purpose and they do it well.
-------- .
The point being: Whether it's $500 or $5.00, is it not reasonable
and correct to trust that the advertised/promoted operational
features or functionalities are what is expected to exist? We are
not BETA TEST Users, but Customers. :roll: :roll: :roll: ;)
Da Wouff
 

kruser

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The point being: Whether it's $500 or $5.00, is it not reasonable
and correct to trust that the advertised/promoted operational
features or functionalities are what is expected to exist? We are
not BETA TEST Users, but Customers. :roll: :roll: :roll: ;)
Da Wouff
No, not unreasonable at all for you to expect those features to work as stated.
If that is what you bought it for, then by all means, that feature should work. In this case, I think the feature does work but it does not work as well as a dedicated weather alert receiver does in your opinion.

My point was that I do not think this feature is the HP-1's main feature. It is more of an added bonus or extra feature they threw in.

I personally wish many manufacturers would get away from the one device does all mentality and build a quality device that does one function and does it well. Of course there is a large crowd that do want one device that does all but I'm in the other crowd. I find that a device made for a specific purpose usually outperforms a similar device that has all kinds of "extras" or "convenience" features built in.
I think the main problem lie in the design or engineering stage for the extra features. I suspect not a lot of time or resources are spent on the extras so you wind up with a poorly performing "extra" feature(s). Sure, it will mostly work but not nearly as well as a dedicated device made specific to the purpose or feature you desire.
In my opinion, they make the extra feature(s) work well enough so they can lay claim that their device also has feature X in order to draw more customers and sales. If it did not work, it would be false advertising.

And then you have problems where adding an extra feature can cause the devices primary feature to suffer.
In the HP-1's case, the weather alert feature does work but judging from your comments, it is a tad more troublesome to setup and use compared to a dedicated weather alert receiver.

Look at many "do all" devices and you will find the bonus features often lack functionality over a true dedicated device as they obviously do not spend a lot of engineering time or resources on those extra features.

Everyone seems to use cars for analogies so here's mine!
They advertise them (cars) as coming with a factory am/fm radio installed in the dash. Sure enough, the radio is there and it does work. Does it sound worth a crud though, usually not. Those that desire quality sound will rip that radio out and replace it with a unit of quality made for that specific purpose (quality sound). Now I must admit that many of todays cars do have very nice sound systems built in at the factory but that was not true back in the 70's, 80's and 90's.
I also never bought a car for its built in factory radio! I bought it to get me to work so I could survive or get me from point A to point B (its primary purpose). The radio was just an added bonus to help pass the time as I drove. That is how I feel about the weather alert feature in the HP-1 or any scanner radio that has a weather alert feature for that matter.

I'd be much happier using my HP-1 to scan for storm reports via SkyWarn or the local police and fire channels during severe weather than I would be by letting it sit on a NOAA channel waiting for a warning to come through. I'll gladly let a dedicated alert receiver do that part of the job as that is what it was designed to do.

This is all just my opinion and you are certainly entitled to yours!
 

WouffHong

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A few mildly false conclusions ;-) .... ..

No, not unreasonable at all for you to expect those features to work as stated.
If that is what you bought it for, then by all means, that feature should work. In this case, I think the feature does work but it does not work as well as a dedicated weather alert receiver does in your opinion. - It works quite well when it stays on-channel

WOUFF: It works quite well when it stays on-channel, of course. ;)

In the HP-1's case, the weather alert feature does work but judging from your comments, it is a tad more troublesome to setup and use compared to a dedicated weather alert receiver.

WOUFF: Nope - Easy as pie. - Setup good, but loss of selected local channel when power is interrupted for a while is the MAIN point I brought up. Not setup issue - reliability issue.. ;-)


I'd be much happier using my HP-1 to scan for storm reports via SkyWarn or the local police and fire channels during severe weather than I would be by letting it sit on a NOAA channel waiting for a warning to come through. I'll gladly let a dedicated alert receiver do that part of the job as that is what it was designed to do.

WOUFF: Granted - "Sit on" is the key phrase - HP-1 fails to remain where you need it when the chips are down and power flaky.

Heck, my cheap faithful old Race Track Pro 20-515 and UNIDEN 330T do it be reliably and have for years!! ;-) - End up using them while Mr. Hp-1 does what it does best: scans Public Safety and the myriad of other stuff..:)

A good conversation!! Tnx es 73 (no "s")
This is all just my opinion and you are certainly entitled to yours!
QSL.. de Da Wouff - Extra class and fanatic Ham since 1952
CD (1955), ARES, RACES and SKYWARN :roll::wink::wink:
 

Araxen

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I bought a Sangean CL-100 Weather Radio(imho the best you can buy) for $60 and that performs the duties I need it too when it comes to weather alerts. My scanner is far more important for listening to the police/emergency crews during the event of a weather disaster or incoming disasters than using it for weather alerts/disasters. I'm surprised they even put that feature into the HP-1.

I agree about the battery charging though. I can't believe they let that slip through the cracks. I wish there was an option for it to never ask me about charging the batteries again.
 

Ensnared

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Tornado Alley Recommendation

Have been a Uniden champion for many years, and thought the HP-1 would live up to as promoted, but wish I had waited longer and lost less money on it instead of having paid the full release version price.

The overall concept is wonderful, but the disappointments others have expressed are echoed here also.

The recent complaint touched upon seems to be in engineering limbo and still a problem, viz; I keep mine on AC power supply most of the time set it to local (strong) Weather Alert Frequency of 162.400 whenever not scanning.

In this Tornado Alley terminus area (NW GA), the warnings come through with consistent 5 Bars solid copy on 162.400 MHz. But when we leave our mountain home for a number of hours, I turn it fully off (All Off) and put it out of sight. - Bad idea..

2-5 hours later, we return and I plug it back in to AC Power, the Weather Alert Frequency has switched to the ZERO-Bars 162.55 WX Channel and if I don't keep it plugged in or the power goes off for even a short time, we NO LONGER receive alerts unless I go back through the menus to put it on the 162.400 local station. A few more power glitchs during a storm and we have to KEEP going back into the menu System to get any weather. (Yes, i have set the local counties in as valid alert areas) - this is a serious problem and needs to be fixed ASAP as Spring hits. To have to use an old Midland WX radio instead of my ~$600 investment is bloody sad.. :(

While on this "rant" - Even though the HP-1 is at full charge when removing power as above, it comes back on telling me it needs a "13 hr- 5 9 Min" charge ALWAYS when power applied - This is a consistent "unexplained anomaly". (Our classic excuse at NASA! ;-) ) :roll:

Uniden: You almost had a real winner in the HP-1 - Let's get these real-world problems resolved. It has the potential to be a true winner, but we paid a lot to be a virtual "BETA" test crowd.. ;-)

TNX es 73 (No"s") ;-)

Wouff
Although I own several scanners from various manufacturers, I never use my scanners for weather alerts. I have two weather radios programmed for my area. These radios are very inexpensive and worth every dime. I strongly recommend the Midland WR-120. Most places sell this radio for around $29.99. I don't own a HP-1 & don't expect to purchase such.

I do; however, use my scanners for monitoring Skywarn frequencies.

Hope this helps:

Midland Radio - Midland Radio | Communication Solutions For Your World
 

pdfdems286

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although i've batted around a hp-1 purchase, i've decided no, for various reason's. first, and foremost. i really don't want to have to download from a computer to update the thing, or add a frequency. i also don't understand why a $500.00 receiver does not have close call or fire tone out. not really bad mouthing the radio. just my opinion.
 

t_shuffle

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although i've batted around a hp-1 purchase, i've decided no, for various reason's. first, and foremost. i really don't want to have to download from a computer to update the thing, or add a frequency. i also don't understand why a $500.00 receiver does not have close call or fire tone out. not really bad mouthing the radio. just my opinion.
Does a scanner exist that doesn't need a computer to download updates?
 

kruser

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Does a scanner exist that doesn't need a computer to download updates?
Of Course! The Unidens (I think all of them) and the GRE and RadioShack GRE clones with the exception of the PSR-800 and whatever the other one is, the iScan something. And then most other manuafacturers unless the device is some kind of SDR.
You can enter in all the updates you want by hand on almost all made today :wink:

I do not think I'd like the task though.
 

jkahn

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Of Course! The Unidens (I think all of them) and the GRE and RadioShack GRE clones with the exception of the PSR-800 and whatever the other one is, the iScan something. And then most other manuafacturers unless the device is some kind of SDR.
You can enter in all the updates you want by hand on almost all made today :wink:

I do not think I'd like the task though.
Not to be argumentative, but I'll play the Devil's advocate here:
The HP-1 (and I love mine) CAN be updated and individual frequencies or talk groups CAN be input by hand, but I certainly wouldn't want to HAVE TO do that, when my laptop and software travel everywhere with me. I preload a couple of Favorites lists when I am out of my home area, and I have been known to use the advanced-advanced features that I paid extra for, to find new systems when I am traveling and find I am staying at a hotel that makes you pay for internet access. [My alternative here is to find another motel with wifi and reprogram from the laptop in their parking lot!]

Bottom line is that whatever scanner from whatever manufacturer you buy it from, it will never do everything you want or need. You have to wait a few months for the newer model to come out for that!

jk
 

AZScanner

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Somewhere in this room. Right now, you're very col
I personally wish many manufacturers would get away from the one device does all mentality and build a quality device that does one function and does it well.
YES! AMEN! HERE HERE!

What I really would love to see is a digital P25 scanner that was a dedicated 700/800MHz receiver robust enough to handle multipathing on digital simulcast systems such as the one we have here in Phoenix. Field programmable but with a subset of the RRDB on board so you can choose where you live and tell it "scan" to get you started. That's be the cats whiskers.

Maybe someday... ;)
-AZ
 

t_shuffle

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Not to be argumentative, but I'll play the Devil's advocate here:
The HP-1 (and I love mine) CAN be updated and individual frequencies or talk groups CAN be input by hand, but I certainly wouldn't want to HAVE TO do that, when my laptop and software travel everywhere with me. I preload a couple of Favorites lists when I am out of my home area, and I have been known to use the advanced-advanced features that I paid extra for, to find new systems when I am traveling and find I am staying at a hotel that makes you pay for internet access. [My alternative here is to find another motel with wifi and reprogram from the laptop in their parking lot!]

Bottom line is that whatever scanner from whatever manufacturer you buy it from, it will never do everything you want or need. You have to wait a few months for the newer model to come out for that!

jk
I'm not trying to sound like a smartass here, I'm really not, but how would one go about applying firmware updates without connecting to a PC?
 

W6KRU

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I'm not trying to sound like a smartass here, I'm really not, but how would one go about applying firmware updates without connecting to a PC?
There are are multiple kinds of updates. You are thinking about firmware updates only. Other posters are talking about updating frequencies, talkgroups, etc.
 

t_shuffle

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There are are multiple kinds of updates. You are thinking about firmware updates only. Other posters are talking about updating frequencies, talkgroups, etc.
Then it seems to me that they have updating confused with reprogramming their scanners with the latest freqs and talkgroups.
 

W6KRU

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Then it seems to me that they have updating confused with reprogramming their scanners with the latest freqs and talkgroups.
That is a matter of opinion. When I need to add a TG, change a PL, update an alpha tag, etc., I don't reprogram the scanner. It is often easier to just make a change using the scanner alone.
 
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