Montgomery Co P25 "roll-out"

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tunnelmot

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FYI

Date for MCSO/PD P25 1A7 radio roll-out:

Talked with my Father-in-law, which is a Lt. with a local PD.

Said the P25 radios are supposed to be issued/installed on or around the 21st of this month.

Rich
 

mfn002

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Said the P25 radios are supposed to be issued/installed on or around the 21st of this month.

I recall hearing something similar from a Sam Houston State University PD officer in October 2007 that they expected to be using it by "after Thanskgiving". However, it was not until March 2008 that they started using the system, so take that with a grain of salt.
 

tunnelmot

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yeah, it already been pushed back a couple of times.

He also stated he has yet to recieve any equipment tutorials, demos, powerpoint snoozers,anything. Almost all info has come from me.(After- dinner conversation) We discussed reception in fringe areas, background noise, but told him he really needed to see if his troops are gonna get a quick overveiw by the reps or HCCTC(?) guys, or are they just gonna drop off a bunch of boxes and leave.

Got 1A7 on now, and still seems like a lot of tech traffic for 2 weeks to go.(still more bugs?)

Either way, I'm ready on my end. ;-)

Rich
 
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davidbond21

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That's what I heard about Comal County. But that was maybe 1.5-2 years ago. And back then(at least talking in these threads) it was said they had installed all the equipment and were passing out the radios to deputies.
 

hiegtx

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Am i correct in understanding that this is the new system that Montgomery County Sheriffs Department is going to?
Yes, from what I've been reading. This would be a simulcast site on the STARNET Project 25 system. This is an all-digital system.

To answer your question up in the General Scanning forum, you'd need one of the following scanners (hh=handheld, b/m= base/mobile, could be used as a desktop, or mounted in a vehicle):
GRE: PSR-500 (hh) PSR-600 (b/m)
Uniden: BCD396T (hh) BCD996T (b/m) The Uniden BCD396XT, a handheld unit, is due out first quarter of this year (roughly by March 31st), and would have features not found on the BCD396T, such as multi-site, which could be advantageous. (The 996 has multi-site).
Radio Shack: Pro-106 (hh) Pro-197 (b/m). Note that while there are minor differences, such as in front panel layout, functionally these scanners are identical to the GRE PSR-500 & PSR-600. GRE makes these for Radio Shack.

The above scanners are the only ones that will work both for the Montgomery County sites, as well as for all the sites in the system (some of the other towers listed show to use 700mhz frequencies).

There are some older, discontinued, digital scanners that can still be found, that would work, specifically, on the Montgomery County simulcast sites, but not on the other sites that use 700mhz. This would include the Pro-96 (hh) & Pro-2096 (b/m) (from Radio Shack), also Uniden BC296D (hh) & BC796D (b/m)
 

mfn002

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Just an interesting sidenote: On Tuesday, I caught MCHD EMS on Site 020 (TG 57824). I guess it's not all digital.
 

tunnelmot

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Are you saying you heard MCHD in ANALOG VOICE?

Tonight, I am hearing Conroe FD in digital. Had my analog Saber on CFD, and my PSR 500 wildcarding the Conroe P25 site, had to do a double take, I heard the tone-outs over both. (BTW, fto's sound like crap on digital)

Seemed strange, as I understand that all City of Conroe was staying EDACS, but maybe the techs randomly selected TGs to sumiulcast to test the new consoles and such.

Very Interesting
Rich
 

bpckty1

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I heard comms earlier tonight on tg 2174 stating the switchover will be on Wednesday (the 21st), time unknown to the operator.
 

bigcarl64

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I have heard several new talkgroups over the last few days that are using encryption. Amazing to me that encryption is needed here in Montgomery County???
 

mfn002

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Following up on my observation of MCHD EMS on Site 020, Walker County EMS recently started simulcasting their tone-outs over 020 as well. However, I did not hear MCHD come over the P25 system, even though their 020 TG was active.
 

bpckty1

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"Amazing to me that encryption is needed here in Montgomery County???"

Unfortunately, there seems to be too many meth labs up there, and I-45 and US 59 are major routes for trafficking many illegal substances and people. So, I think this must be one of the major considerations for encryption.
 

tunnelmot

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Site 151 impressions

Today I am home sick. Since I was going to see the doctor down in the Woodlands, thought I'd bring the 500 along to see how it was sounding.

While the 500 does EXCELLENT at home, while mobile, it seemed to be a futile effort to monitor the 1a7 at any reliable capacity. I am sure this is due to me depending on a consumer grade radio. Here is what I toyed with, both mobile and at lunch around Woodlands Pkwy/I 45.
-While mobile, was using NMO mounted Motorola 800 3 db gain antenna, solid conductor coax.
-Adjusted DG prime/Noise threshold/etc both up and down from my "flawless" settings that work well at home.
-I was constantly making adjustments in the expert menu in a vain effort to keep the ever elusive "T" solid on the screen.
-Mucho garbleage, trash, and bits of voice.
-While stationary, I did hear the Oak Ridge chief (2700)doing some basic testing, so they may have been getting their new toys charged up.

The updated DB shows this as a simulcast system, so I attribute much of this to the 500 not being able to sort out the timing/multipathing of the digital signal.

Down in the Woodlands, the noise floor of anything 800 was insane. Even knowing that the RSSI bars on the 500 could be calibrated better (mines' at factory settings) I was showing 4-5 bars consistently. Turning on the attenuator allowed me to hold the "T" while stationary. (Also helped on the old school EDACS)

I will continue playing with this, as it stands now, I can't see using this while mobile. I got almost zero intelligible voice. This is in sharp contrast to the decode I get while at home and stationary. I get everything(2318/1a7/DPS etc) PERFECT. And my DPS is ALWAYS FLAWLESS, mobile or fixed.

Just sharing my experiences today as this thing is fixin' to go on line, so I welcome any tips, hints, corrections, etc.

Now for my questions?

?-Site 150 sounds great , but 151 (which I interpret as a 5 site simulcast) is OK at best. IS this due to multipathing, etc?
?-Is this the best it gets? Or is it possible that as the subscribers come on line that there will be more tweaking and tuning which MAY net better results for folks such as myself?

In fact, radio checks are being done right now (1:30 pm) by units, so lets see how this goes.

Rich
 

fosterm

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I am using a uniden 396 with various antennas including an external antenna.

Reception is terrible to non existent on the new system.

During the radio checks today at 1:30 p.m. to 2:00p.m. and after, I am getting very little intelligible radio traffic.

It is so bad I am wondering if I have an incorrect setting. With p25 set to auto it just flat out doesn't receive traffic. With it set to manual at around 7-8 (err 50+) I pick up bits and pieces but nothing that I would consider even close to reliable.

I thought DPS traffic was bad.....so far this makes DPS look like a great system.

Anyone have any suggestions for this particular radio. I must be doing something wrong.

These results are from a fixed location in The Woodlands area.

Thanks

Foz
 
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tunnelmot

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Hey Foz, don't give up. I am not well versed on the Uniden, but I can tell you I am getting better results from the Conroe site (site 105 in the db). It's the "Montgomery County" simulcast site (151 in the db) that's giving me the issues. There is also a lot of dead keys, so evidently they're still optimizing everything. But there was a pretty healthy rash of radio checks and 5 counts about an hour ago.

I don't know how sensitive the Uniden is, but I used the attenuator, which allowed me to grab the CC. But the GRE is known for it's sloppy front end. Seemed like a pretty high noise floor down there in the Woodlands, so you may be coming at this from an attenuation rather than a gain perspective.

Update your progress if you are so inclined.

Rich
 

brennan1020

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Ok I am stupid at these things. I will have three radios that i will have to get programmed tomorrow. For the live activation, or i wont be able to work. I am a Female owner of a tow truck company. My father handled everything (but was killed 9/23/2008 while on a scene) I have the New Radio Shack 197 coming tomorrow, Pro 2096 and the 97 (HH) They only had one of the 197 instock so until they get the other two in they are sending me the other to use.

I do not where to find the frequency codes to put into the radio.
I know that alot talked about going live wed 1/21/2009 but i was told by the guy that handles all the maintenance for county that they are going live 1/22/2009.

I also spoke to someone in the radio shop for MCHD and she said that they will not be going live for several months
 

tunnelmot

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a helping hand

I used to run wreckers up here (Rich's Wrecker). I read about your father in the paper. I am more than willing to help you get up and running on the new system.

Rich

PS. You can go to the database on this site, search for system id of 1a7, all frequencies and sites should be listed.
 
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brennan1020

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thank you. Rich.

If you could call me and maybe meet up with me or something. I am very familar with the PRO 2096 but little scared of the new 197 models they seem to have alot of added features. I can not find the frequencies any where online.

I did find a guy to program them but charges $75 per radio. I know this is a fair price but the issue is that i will be getting two loaner ones and i hate to waste that money LOL .cause i will have to reprogram the new ones when they come in as well.

also my email address is brennan_102@yahoo.com
 

fosterm

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Rich

Thanks for the kick in the head. Was only monitoring site 151. Had been monitoring 105 previously but for some reason had switched over to 151 only. Switching back to 105 has made a big difference.

Thanks again.

Foz
 

tunnelmot

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We may be stuck with 151 crappy simulcast. Seems as they pulled the plug on site 105 about 30 min ago. Checked all freqs on 105...nuthin'.

I am playing around to see what I can do, if anything, to get my 500 to decode 151 any better.

TGs so far:
2026 MCSO Dist 1
2028 MCSO Dist 2
2030 MCSO Dist 3
2012 CISD Police

Rich
 
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