Interested In New Scanner Been Away From It For A Few Years

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weevy

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Hello everyone, I have just rejoined this forum from a long sabbatical. I am very much interested in getting back into the hobby of scanning and programming.

Here is my background, I have had some scanners before. I have owned the BCT 8 BCT 780XT and a couple of others that have left my mind.

I live in Iowa, in particular, Central Iowa.

I am pretty much interested in scanning all areas from you local P.D. to Air, to Utilities.

First off the reason I left scanning was the fact that I was worried about all this rebanding and was upset that in the future my purchases of both the radio and scanner software was going to become obsolete, since their wasn't going to be any capable scanner on the market to scan the above mentioned freq's.

But as I have been lurking on these forums, I see that hasn't happened.

So after looking at the fourms I would like some opinions on what I scanner and software I should get for my particular Radio.


In the past as stated above I have owned Unidens and Radio Shack.

I am looking for a Combination of both software and radio that would be very easy to program and that would be a worthwhile purchase for the near future. It is not a case of not wanting to learn how to program the radio, but am very busy and don't have allot of time to program all the talkgroups etc.

I am willing to become a premium member of this site, if I can download all the freq's I found for my area and would be able to download them and input them into the radio through the scanner software.

I have purchased from Scannermaster in the past, but find the prices he charges to program my radio for my certain area a little steep.

So I would appreciate some feedback on what type of scanner would best fit my area. I don't do a great amount of out of state driving so having to reprogram would not affect me.But on a vacation or 2 per summer.

Any help would be appreciated

So in closing

1. I live in Central Iowa
2. I am interested in listening to all talkgroups in my area from Public Safety to Air to Utilities
3. I am interested in a Scanner that will be a good purchase today and into the near future, and I konw that technology is changing rapidly
4. I am also interested in the fact that if I become a premium member of this wonderful site, that I will be able to download my freq's for my area, transfer them to the scanner with the software I will purchase.
5. What type of software can do the above mentioned.

I looked at the downloadable freq's for my area and it appears everything is there that I would be interested in listening to.

I understand the $30.00 to become a premium member would be a good buy considering by what I have seen is a great amount of information.


Thanks again for any input
 
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captclint

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Dec 31, 2005
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Mountaintop, PA
Welcome back to RR. First, central Iowa is too vague to make an accurate assessment of what types of systems are out there. If you indicate your county, we can look at all those that border it. Second, would need to know if you want a base or portable. A quick look at the area around Des Moines doesn't show any digital, but would prefer to know your exact county.
 

imbruski

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Jul 17, 2006
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Location
Carlisle, IA
I also live in Central Iowa and have a RadioShack PRO197 and use WIN500 to program. I have no problems with Ames, state DOT and patrol, RACOM and with the ST-2 antenna hear all surrounding counties. So, my vote is RadioShack, WIN500, ST-2 and most of all be a Premium Subscriber you will enjoy it all. Just my 2 cents worth.
 

captclint

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I live in the Polk County Area
Unless I missed something, there are no digital systems in your Polk, general area, or State agencies , so a Pro197 is overkill. My advice is to NOT get a digital thinking you will be ready for whatever in the future. Digital radios tend to improve in features and capability every 2 years. It would likely take twice that long for a new systems come on line.

You still did not say whether portable or base, so I'll just say that GRE analog trunking scanners tend to overload with Cell, Radio, TV, and Page towers nearby if you live in a rural area. If you live in the city, there are often many more of these sources. In return, they are more sensitive than Unidens, so a good choice if you don't have strong signals nearby. Otherwise, Uniden is a good choice..less sensitive, but less prone to overload. I'm not a Radio Shack fan. GRE and Uniden make their scanners, so I prefer to go to the source, and I find they do not release firmware upgrades as quickly as GRE and Uniden. Both have excellent Customer technical support on this and their own forums, with none from RS except our members.

Neither Object or DMA are as easy to program as the bank scanners you had. GRE does make bank scanners that trunk: PSR-400/300. Personally, I think the Uniden DMA are easier to understand(I find Main PC folders and sub-folders make good analogies to systems and groups respectively) and program. No matter what you chose, get software. Uniden has one or two good freeware, while Radio Shack/GRE run around $40, and generally do not supply as many accessories as Uniden. Then you can download most anything you want from this site, and 95% of the time, it sets up all the system parameters in the software automatically.

Uniden Software Freescan is a very good program, but if you are doing a lot of monitoring on the PC, ARC has better virtual control capability IMHO
Object Oriented I'm not Object Oriented expert, but most seem to prefer Win500. Again, I think ARC has same advantage as above. You can get free trial versions of all of these and decide for yourself.
 
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