Looking to buy a good scanner at a reasonable price

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gilberto814

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I live in Walworth county and travel from there to near O'Hare everyday. I am looking into buying a scanner for my car and I was looking at a handheld with a mobile antenna. I just would like some options and insight on what I should look at buying.

1) What radio?
I was looking at the Uniden Bearcat BC346XT Scanner from what I have read a looked into a good scanner for a mid-range price. Should I maybe start off lower or higher?
2) Which antenna will pair up with a radio and get the best performace for the price?
I was looking at the Comtelco All-Band Low-Profile Mobile Antenna.
3) I was thinking when I do buy to mount the antenna on the back part of my SUV. Does the antenna need a ground plain like a CB antenna? If it does can I mount it near my CB antenna which is mounted in the center of my SUV Roof?

Thank you in advance for advice and insight. I
 

djeplett

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I have a 2002 Explorer and I have mounted my dual band ham antenna on the driver side cowl as the AM/FM antenna is on the passenger side. I use it with my scanner while travelling when I don't want to yack on the ham rig. It performs great while mobile on highway 51 traveling to and from the U.P. of Michigan. I can routinely hear transmissions from neighboring counties. So the antenna you picked should do fine on your cowl. If you can, the roof is definitely better, but for me I am happy with the performance I get on the cowl. If you mount your scanner antenna near the CB antenna I think the rule of thumb is a half wave of distance between them. Somebody can chime in on that aspect.

As for what scanner to buy... if you don't need digital coverage in your area the Radio Shack PRO-164 is a good scanner. It's a newer model that is virtually identical to the PRO-97 and I've had mine for a few years and like it a lot. The only downside the 97 had was this annoying break in conversations that occurred on transmissions using DCS squelch. For some reason it loses the DCS decoding breifly and it almost sounds like priority is on when it isn't. I don't know if the PRO-164 suffers from that annoyance also or if GRE fixed that. Speaking of GRE, the same scanner as the PRO-164 is the GRE PSR-400. So you could look for either/or and see which one is the best price.

If you need a digital model, the PSR-500 is awesome. Just got mine a month ago and I love it. The same scanner from Radio Shack is the PRO-106 and my mother in law has that one and loves it, too. You can get PRO-96's for a good price used on eBay, but that's an older discontinued model. If you prefer a smaller package, the Uniden BCD396XT is excellent as well.
 
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whiskeytango

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Sep 7, 2009
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sacramento ca/reno nv
1) What radio?
I was looking at the Uniden Bearcat BC346XT Scanner from what I have read a looked into a good scanner for a mid-range price. Should I maybe start off lower or higher?

uniden is the best middle of the road option with lots of features, ur research has done well....

2) Which antenna will pair up with a radio and get the best performace for the price?
I was looking at the Comtelco All-Band Low-Profile Mobile Antenna.

for 10 bucks less the Hustler MRM Scanner antenna, their version of what youre looking for will do the job, and pulls in the vhf low which some of your neighboring counties use.

3) I was thinking when I do buy to mount the antenna on the back part of my SUV. Does the antenna need a ground plain like a CB antenna? If it does can I mount it near my CB antenna which is mounted in the center of my SUV Roof?

try to have a foot between the antennas. but yea it needs the ground plane

Thank you in advance for advice and insight.
 
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