is it even worth having a digital scanner anymore?

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abunadeez

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i was really into scanning about 20 years ago. i had recently picked up an sdr and ended up getting the bug. i usually just monitor anything(air,ham,ems) local just to know whats going on. it seems as if all the good things such as pd are all or mostly encrypted here in middlesex county. im just wondering if at this point it is even worth having a digital scanner because a lot of departments appear to be going encrypted.
 
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Chronic

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Nope , not at all , sell all of your radio equipment and find another hobby..
"Sarcasm"
 

KK4JUG

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im just wondering if at this point it is even worth having a digital scanner because a lot of departments appear to be going encrypted.
Nope , not at all , sell all of your radio equipment and find another hobby..
NOT "Sarcasm"
 

brucebuck1010

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Mileage may vary. Your situation is unfortunate.. Either you find something else to scan, or you can't hear anything. There is a small chance that your agencies might back off on enc, once they realize the problems associated with it. Not much else to say... :(
 

Analogrules

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I got rid of my digital scanner and I live in Union County. I notice that even the towns such as Elizabeth and Linden who are normally in the clear, were still switching to encrypted mode more often aside from the frequent broken up signals.

As I said in other threads, the majority of PDs will most likely go the encrypted route within the next 3 years. We already lost all of Camden County, most of Atlantic County, and about half the PDs in Monmouth, Ocean, and Middlesex County. Seems like the encrypted trend is slowly pushing from south to north in NJ.

My only regret getting rid of mine is that I really miss monitoring Atlantic City PD, because I am down there several times a year. But who knows how long they will remain in the clear. It basically depends on who you like to monitor the most, how likely they are to remain in the clear, and if you feel it is worth the money.
 

minasha

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Perhaps a fix of some kind to "decrypt" these transmissions looms in the near future.
 

SCPD

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Either that or Uniden and Whistler wont be selling scanner to us anymore!
New jersey is going "dark" slowly, I cant even listen to Rutherford a town over anymore....
Didnt AC go encrypted recently?
The DMCA prevents us from making legal decryption devices, I say change that law!
Write your congressman/woman.
 

pdfdems286

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I have demented people telling me on a weekly basis, "they'll find a cure for encryption.A kid with a computer can do it". I just smile and laugh. Had one business owner tell me "the police are going to loan me a encrypted portable radio". I spat out my yoo-hoo.
 

bailly2

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digital radios use 128 bit encryption at least. would take awhile for the nsa with supercomputers to find the key to decrypt with ...you can listen to the input frequencies with a short stub antenna for nascar, in attenuated mode. that will tell you if something is happening in your neighborhood. dont need a $500 scanner for that. use the sdr# scanner plug in
 

KK4JUG

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I have demented people telling me on a weekly basis, "they'll find a cure for encryption.A kid with a computer can do it". I just smile and laugh. .
Yes and that begs the question: Why hasn't that kid done it?
 

Analogrules

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Didnt AC go encrypted recently?

No, many towns in Atlantic County recently went encrypted, but not Atlantic City itself (yet).
 

Analogrules

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digital radios use 128 bit encryption at least. would take awhile for the nsa with supercomputers to find the key to decrypt with ...you can listen to the input frequencies with a short stub antenna for nascar, in attenuated mode. that will tell you if something is happening in your neighborhood. dont need a $500 scanner for that. use the sdr# scanner plug in
Are you saying we can monitor encrypted Police in the clear on their Input frequencies?
 

GTR8000

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Are you saying we can monitor encrypted Police in the clear on their Input frequencies?
No. Encryption is end-to-end, meaning before it even hits the airwaves on either side of the transmission (infrastructure or subscriber).

The point he is making is that if you monitor the input frequency (or frequencies for trunking) using attenuation, you can detect the presence of nearby activity. You won't have any idea what they're saying, but you'll be aware of the presence of radios transmitting in the vicinity. If you pair that up with something like DSD+ or Unitrunker to track system activity, you can also get a sense of what agency is transmitting.
 

Analogrules

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Oh ok. I can detect the presence of nearby activity when I see flashing lights. Don't even need a radio for that. Haha
 

ansky

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Keep in mind you can still listen to most fire departments and EMS agencies. Those are almost never encrypted. It's not all doom and gloom.
 

richee2000

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I have no interest in EMS/Fire. My interest is in Law Enforcement . I have spent over $1000 on scanners which are becoming useless . YES, it is all doom and gloom for some.
 
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