Just Got A 436

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dcisive

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to add to having a 536. I have to say, although this probably flies in the face of many who have posted here, I'm see absolutely NO difference in the performance of this amazing portable. Signal strengths from both distant channels as well as the sound quality is outstanding. Clear as a bell and full. Even sharper than the 536. Scan speeds and all other functionality are right there with it. They are clearly directly related. The DMR on this 436 is also excellent as I've been listening to some of that this morning as well and it's clear and flawless thus far. I'm having a hard time thinking about returning the 536 as I'm not sure I need both. I just had to try out a 436 to see how I felt about a portable and so far I'm really liking it.

I'm not noting any lack of sensitivity in the VHF nor UHF regions as reported by a number of folks that discussed the need for some copper tape in the battery department. If I had to come up with at least ONE negative if I'd dare to call it that, it would be the contrast on an extreme angle of the screen is a bit lacking. For example when it's sitting on my desk if real close to me, looking down at it it's not as dark as it is once you back off a tad and then the angle of view is just fine. Not a big deal in the long run. I got this from ScannerMaster and got one of their amazingly wonderful hard leather cases for it (I'm a bit OCD) I like to keep my gear like new. And this case most certainly WILL accomplish that. It's thick, hard and extremely protective. The clear plastic is just the right amount of thickness for ease of use but more protective then the cheaper one's out there for this radio. It's completely transparent so good in that area as well. I upgraded the DMR pretty quick and it's all good now. I have several top antennas to use with it so no problem there either. All in all I'm really impressed with this bad boy. Much more so than so many other posts I'd read. Sure don't understand why so many are selling theirs......especially for a 536 which to me has no serious advantages unless you're into the WiFi thing which I couldn't care less about. I don't do it in the car frankly so that also is of no interest. So just wanted to give my report of my experience with it so far. I think the switchgear on it has a good feel, NOT cheap like the Whistler. Have fun....I sure am
 

rwier

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All of my scanners work great. Another poster has a similar claim in his sig. I read through the entire manual 3 times before touching the hardware. After pilot error and conventional wisdom are removed from the learning curve, I find very little to recommend for any brand or model over another.

Of course, different brands and models have different "features" that set each other apart.
 
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jonwienke

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I really like the 436 also. I've never had the self-interference problem, and performance has been great. I have a nearby pager tower that spams most of the VHF band on some of my Baofengs, which the 436 cheerfully ignores. And I've gotten Close Call hits from Virginia in Pennsylvania. I've used it as a base, mobile, and handheld, and it's worked great, except for the small speaker not having quite enough volume in a noisy vehicle. Since I don't have a lot of use for the built-in streaming of the 536, the 436 is my go-to scanner for basically any occasion.
 

N5XTC

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i own many scanners and also recently got a 436. i really like the fav list function as it allows for very efficient scanner. i like the 3 line display and being able to hold on either of the 3. also, easy wat to temp avoid some things i dont want to copy. ADVICE, get the soft case. really makes taking the scanner with you safer and more enjoyable. i was always fearful of dropping or scratching the scanner. now, i am relaxed with it. if you drop with the soft case, you will prob be ok and without scracthing it. i love the clear plastic over the entire screen and buttons area. now i can put the scanner in my truck's cup hold and not worry about scratching it. it still allows you to see the service light also. wish they made one to fit my 396 xt's. would have saved one of them from being scratched all to hell when it went down to the pavement one time.

very happy with the 436. glad i bought it. i use sentinel to program it with the card in the radion. no probs at all yet. i do use an external battery charger and eneloop pros. prob last 8 hours i guess. i most always use the display light.
 

AA6IO

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I own three 436HPs, one which is on loan to son-in-law. I still think the 436HP is the best portable scanner out there. Only other portable that I use a lot now is TRX-1 to monitor NXDN. Hopefully, Uniden will offer something for NXDN. I think a lot of the negative posts are by the same people in general. I would venture to say that more than 80% of folks who have owned the 436HP have a very favorable opinion. Overall, I sure do.
 

Scanner_Rider

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The 436 I bought works well however the rubber antenna seems to be more interference susceptible than those on my previous hand helds.

I works okay but I think I will try to research on better reception portable antennas to consider to replace the SMC antenna that came with it so it drops less traffic when in full portable mode.

The antenna issue in my opinion does not take away from the overall functionality as when I used my old analog in portable mode I ended up buying a better quality short rubber antenna for it also to improve reception.

Docked to the l outside antenna mounted on the eave of my one story house or the antenna on my truck , it receives fine but with the antenna that came with it even just carrying into the yard or out on the porch to listen to , it loses 50 to 60 percent of its reception with the rubber antenna.
 

dcisive

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So last night I set both scanners on my Favorite list of police and fire I have made up. They share the SAME info form Sentinel. They tracked virtually identically with a few exceptions where the 436 actually nailed a few channels quicker than the 536 did, but for the most part they tracked identically. I never used the stock antenna. I'm using a small Comet TriBand antenna on the 436 and it sounded every bit as sensitive (not more so) and kept right up with the 536 easily and was NOT lacking sensitivity in any way shape or form. This was also determined by running both on the FULL Database, in which once again they were identical and there is NO loss of lower or upper VHF or UHF, so no desire to bother with that foiled tape hack job some report was necessary in the battery compartment. I'm also NOT using the stock batteries. I'm using some Eneloop Pro 2450mah batteries which were initiallly charged on a nice pulse charger to full. I have my charger in the 436 set now to 8 hours. I don't wish to remove it all the time to charge batteries as I'm using the better HARD leather case from ScannerMaster which has better protection and I feel better clear plastic front as well. To each their own, but in that case it's as solid as a rock and well protected (and looks sexy as hell). ;-)
 

jonwienke

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Location has everything to do with scanner reception.
I agree, with the caveat that it is the ANTENNA location that matters most. As long as there is good quality coax between antenna and scanner, the location of the scanner itself doesn't matter much, as long as the total length of the coax run is reasonable (say less than 100 feet).
 

K1IWN

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It's location of antenna, quality of antenna, and other issues that I haven't seen discussed too often here is interference of some sort, weather, and solar activity.

I live out in the woods in a nook of a hill, 15 miles from the nearest "city". I have had no issues with reception on any scanner I have used at the location of my dwelling. This isn't to say that I don't fool around with my antenna (I just picked up an Austin Spectra - unreal reception for an indoor base). On a clear night in winter, reception is phenomenal.

Having lived in a city with a scanner, there is far more interference. The hazy humid days of summer cause interference. Increased solar activity causes interference. As a scanner listener I expect interference.

I expect a portable scanner to not be as sharp as a base scanner due to antenna. Hooking up the portable to a good base antenna, I expect almost identical results as to the base scanner. But the idea of a portable is just that... portability. I am not going to look like some dope walking down the street with my Austin Spectra in one hand, 17 feet of coax in a knapsack hooked to my portable.

Portable radios do not have the distance that base radios do. Most know that from years of listening. Portable scanners are in the same boat. They are brilliant for local transmissions within a few miles. That is all they are designed to do.
 

dcisive

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I would have to disagree regarding the ability of the portable 436 to pick up distance with just a competent portable antenna on it. I'm receiving Davis Country stuff from Herriman (about 40 miles as the crow flies) with no problems. It is plenty sensitive. Heck even the stock rubber duck picks up most of what I care to hear within 25 miles. I keep seeing this dissing of the 436 but don't feel it's worth that kind of commentary. An outdoor or base type antenna changes the program altogether, but it's NOT a issue with the scanners themselves.
 

KK4JUG

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I have a 436. I like mine, too. Now, Upman, can I have my money.

Seriously, the technology is amazing. I haven't had a speck of trouble with mine. It seems to find everything I ask it to.
 

AA6IO

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BCD-436 a great scanner in So. Cal. Put on an RH77CA for VHF/UHF and RS800 for 800, and you'll hear lots more. But yes, the stock antenna does reasonably well.
 

K1IWN

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I keep seeing this dissing of the 436 but don't feel it's worth that kind of commentary. An outdoor or base type antenna changes the program altogether, but it's NOT a issue with the scanners themselves.
I am NOT dissing the 436... I have one also. It's a GREAT radio! Compare the 436 / 536 on their stock unit antennas, they are very close. Some, like yourself, may find them identical. I hear some minor discrepancies. As I mentioned, I expect that with a portable. That isn't dissing the 436.

I have never been a fan of Uniden's stock antennas, and this dates back to the 1980s. It's not because they are bad... I just want better, and I am willing to invest in it to get it.

Based on my experience, portable scanners that I owned over the years could not compare to base units. It's like listening to a cop on portable radio... range is limited. Technology has improved that over the years, which is great. This is why I have the 536 as a base and the 436 as portable. I am more than satisfied with the performance of both for the way they are designed for their use.

I have a HomePatrol2 which is dandy unit also... perfect for my office. That truly is the darkhorse scanner of the three I own. If the HP series had the same features as the x36's that would be THE radio, in my humble opinion.

Everyone is going to have different results based on climate, geography, and location. That was my point. It was not to diss the 436 or any other unit. Some people swear by Whistler radios for their area. Having played around with this hobby for years, nothing surprises me and nobody is wrong for what they find for performance of radios for their area or personal preference. I know what works for me for my area. Others know what works for them.

I will say this... my 436 is going to get put through the ringer in April as I drive from Maine to Central Florida and back. The GPS is going to get thoroughly tested. I can't wait to see how it performs on that trip. I have high expectations, and I hope it delivers.

Enjoy! :cool:
 

jonwienke

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I will say this... my 436 is going to get put through the ringer in April as I drive from Maine to Central Florida and back. The GPS is going to get thoroughly tested. I can't wait to see how it performs on that trip. I have high expectations, and I hope it delivers.
I've done similar trips with a 436, with great results. Some suggestions:

Get a RAM mount. It's a great option for securely holding the scanner in the vehicle. but still allowing you to conveniently remove it for portable use. (Suction cup or other mounting base sold separately)
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001QD8Q5Q

Get an external antenna for your vehicle. Any antenna inside the vehicle is a recipe for crappy performance. A basic dual-band magnet mount on the vehicle roof will work far better than any antenna attached to the scaneer inside the vehicle.

Be stingy with your service types. GPS scanning from the main database tends to scan more stuff than you really want to hear. Definitely enable the dispatch channels, but the -tac and -talk service types should probably be turned off to keep scan cycling time under 10 seconds.

Familiarize yourself with avoiding systems and departments by touch without looking at the scanner. When you leave a state, the scanner may want to continue to monitor that state's traffic. Avoiding the state system(s) you've left can speed up scanning. You'll also want to be able to turn the scroll knob to skip past a boring conversation without necessarily avoiding the channel.

If you haven't already done so, get the DMR and ProVoice keys. It will cut down on the annoying sound of undecoded digital.
 

K1IWN

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Most excellent tips, Jon.

Get a RAM mount. It's a great option for securely holding the scanner in the vehicle. but still allowing you to conveniently remove it for portable use. (Suction cup or other mounting base sold separately)
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001QD8Q5Q
I will do that! I have not investigated that part of it yet, and you saved me time and effort. Thank you!

Get an external antenna for your vehicle. Any antenna inside the vehicle is a recipe for crappy performance. A basic dual-band magnet mount on the vehicle roof will work far better than any antenna attached to the scaneer inside the vehicle.
I have a SpectrumForce already for that purpose.

Be stingy with your service types. GPS scanning from the main database tends to scan more stuff than you really want to hear. Definitely enable the dispatch channels, but the -tac and -talk service types should probably be turned off to keep scan cycling time under 10 seconds.
Right! I plan on keeping it simple. I don't really care for much other than police since I will be on the highway most of the time.

Familiarize yourself with avoiding systems and departments by touch without looking at the scanner. When you leave a state, the scanner may want to continue to monitor that state's traffic. Avoiding the state system(s) you've left can speed up scanning. You'll also want to be able to turn the scroll knob to skip past a boring conversation without necessarily avoiding the channel.
This may be my greatest "challenge", but I have a couple months to play around with the unit before I embark.

If you haven't already done so, get the DMR and ProVoice keys. It will cut down on the annoying sound of undecoded digital.
Absolutely! I have them on the 536 and will add them to the 436 shortly.

Thanks again, Jon. I sincerely appreciate it! :cool:
 

jonwienke

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I will do that! I have not investigated that part of it yet, and you saved me time and effort. Thank you!
You need 4 things:

The finger mount:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001QD8Q5Q/

This base to attach to the back of the finger mount:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004O8LF26/

And then a clamp arm and a base of your choice from this list:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/2NBJVGJ2UNPEI/

Use the longest fingers, and mount them in the 2 lowest slots on the finger mount, and use the included slip-on grip sleeves. For extra security, you can put one of the second-longest fingers on top. But if you want to use the headphone jack, you'll need to drill a 5/16 hole in the top finger. I've included some photos of my base station RAM mount setup below.

I plan on keeping it simple. I don't really care for much other than police since I will be on the highway most of the time.
I would recommend EMS/fire dispatch as well. You'll get notifications of traffic incidents that may not show up on police dispatch, such as a grass fire causing visibility problems on the highway.
 

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K1IWN

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You need 4 things:

The finger mount:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001QD8Q5Q/

This base to attach to the back of the finger mount:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004O8LF26/

And then a clamp arm and a base of your choice from this list:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/2NBJVGJ2UNPEI/

Use the longest fingers, and mount them in the 2 lowest slots on the finger mount, and use the included slip-on grip sleeves. For extra security, you can put one of the second-longest fingers on top. But if you want to use the headphone jack, you'll need to drill a 5/16 hole in the top finger. I've included some photos of my base station RAM mount setup below.
Excellent! I did a quick search on what else I may need and you answered that, so that saves me that.

I am not sure yet if I am going to use the headphone jack or not, but I will likely plan on it just in case.

Once I get all the gear I need together I will set it up and play around with it. I see one additional thing I will need and that is wire loom. Lots and lots of wires.

Much appreciated, Jon. Thanks again.
 
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