I moved to Orange County. Is my scanner a paper weight?

W6VVM

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Jul 6, 2009
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Hello all, I'm looking for some locals to show me how the glass is half full.

I recently moved to southern OC after being spoiled for years with my county's crystal clear analog Type II SmartNet system. Scanning has been a favorite pastime of mine for decades. I know law is all encrypted down here, and from what I've read I shouldn't hold my breath for OCFA. So with that said, I'd love to hear from anyone in OC that still gets enjoyment out of their scanner.

I haven't been very active on amateur since getting my license a few years ago, but these days I find myself monitoring PAPA DMR and the WIN system. But if there is something else anyone down here enjoys listening to, I'd love to hear about it.
 

kearthfan101

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The following are unencrypted on the CCCS system:

Aircall (law enforcement helicopter hailing)
DSP-DSP (dispatch center coordination)
95% of the public works channels
Animal Control
OCTA Supervisors
OC Parks
OC Lifeguards/each city's LG channel
John Wayne Airport

stuff you can also listen to:

CHP
California State Parks

plus a bunch of other things I'm forgetting to name.
 

B

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Dec 19, 2002
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Vista, Ca.
Besides the good stuff that kearthfan101 mentioned, there are several VHF frequencies used in or near the OC when a vegetation fire takes place, Fire OC, V-Fire and V-Tacs, CDF commands and tacs are good for monitoring. The Cleveland National Forest is close too, and worth the listen, along with federal air tactics and air to ground freqs, during fire season, which is nearly year round now. Look for the SOLAR and PROS plans in the RR database along with all the Cleveland National Forest frequencies. Also, if you're interested, and maybe way south OC like San Clemente, Dana Point or even San Juan, listening to Camp Pendleton on the DOD system is fun as well. If you're into military scanning, well heck, there's a bunch to listen to there too, your're near a hot spot for military aviation, Navy ships working with the Marines just off the coast and the US Coast Guard. As far as the OC fire agencies finally un-encrypting, it will happen, some day. Sheriff's are running the show and it's like turning the Queen Mary....
 

Engine104

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Jul 6, 2005
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Winnetka, CA
" As far as the OC fire agencies finally un-encrypting, it will happen, someday. Sheriff's are running the show and it's like turning the Queen Mary."
LOL.. More like turning a glacier.. :)

OP: You can stream OC Fire comms on here.
 

LAflyer

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Depends what floats your boat, but there is plenty of radio traffic all around us. Tons of business users for example, or how about aviation.
 

W6VVM

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Jul 6, 2009
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Thanks for all this great insight guys. I'm in Laguna Niguel, up on a hill with a little bit of elevation which will hopefully work in my favor. I've been running a BCD436HP for so long now, with a stubby antenna and haven't had to reconfigure it in years (re-learning curve ahead).

I turned on every service type in the full database but didn't get much. Realistically I probably need to start researching better antennas, and maybe even justify a basestation...that SDS200 is calling my name 8-D

But all the above posts have got me excited to dive back in. Thanks again!
 

kearthfan101

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I could receive LAPD North Hollywood from Costa Mesa and LACoFD from San Diego County... There's tons of out of other county stuff available too.
 

W6VVM

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Jul 6, 2009
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You might be able to get LACoFD from there too.
I could receive LAPD North Hollywood from Costa Mesa and LACoFD from San Diego County... There's tons of out of other county stuff available too.
I dug up a better antenna and I can in fact receive LAPD and LASO. Shocked that I’m able to pick up Malibu/Lost Hills. Haven’t listened to them in ages! Good stuff!
 

Paco-Jerte

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When I worked in Tustin I used to get most of LAPD using an RS 800MHz antenna. Also plenty of ICS too but since then a lot of them have encrypt. This was back in 2018

Miss going to Microcenter too, was 5 minutes away hehe
 

RadioDaze

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Orange County, California, USA
I used to monitor Aircall and DSP-DSP before Metronet and OCFA and the rest became encrypted. I haven't even tried since then. Do I need to make any changes to sites and settings, or could I just pick up where I left off?

Man, I sure miss RED.
 

Randyk4661

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I live in Garden Grove and have found many of things to listen to. City crews are good to listen to as they are called to clean up after accidents, trees down or just to close streets for repair.
Anaheim stadium, the convention center. Los Angeles county and city.
There a many conventional channels mentioned above. National & state law / fire frequencies. Cleveland NF was good to listen to in the summer time.
Much to my surprise Camp Pendelton comes in strong here.
One of my favorites to listen to is So. Cal. Edison. If the power fails nice to know what they are doing to get the power turned back on. You might be in SDGE's area, check them out now that winter time is coming.
With the covid crisis, I have had alot of time to explore the airwaves. Scan a frequency band for a few hours and note anything that pops up. That's how I found Anaheim Stadium even a couple of hotels I work at.
In a disaster, it's better to know what you can listen to now than to try and find something then.
Randy
 

kearthfan101

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I used to monitor Aircall and DSP-DSP before Metronet and OCFA and the rest became encrypted. I haven't even tried since then. Do I need to make any changes to sites and settings, or could I just pick up where I left off?

Man, I sure miss RED.
no real changes other than the new P25 system. They’re Countywide only talkgroups, so just put CW site in and they’ll work.
 
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