New 2 Scanners

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Icdman

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Dec 12, 2009
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Hey folks.

Looking to get a police/fire/emerngey scanner and am not knowledgeable about them . Have looked around the net and at Radio Shack (the salespeople are not knowledgeable about these things.) Looking at Prfo-107 Tripple Trunking, Pro-164-1000, and BC-72XLT. I live in Florissant, Mo. in St. Louis County and would like to get all the Police departments, EMS, Fire, Airport, etc.

Which of these scanners would be the best, and do I need trunking?

Thx. Icdman
 

N0IU

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Sep 26, 2009
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Wentzville, Missouri
Welcome to RR!

I don't have any specific recommendations for digital scanners since I am in Wentzville and everything out here in the Boonies is still analog! You might want to make a post in the Missouri forum and introduce yourself over there. I know there are a lot of folks in the St. Louis area on here that can give you better information than I can.

http://forums.radioreference.com/missouri-radio-discussion-forum/

As far as Radio Shack goes, you have questions, they have cellphones!
 

kandrey89

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Dec 11, 2009
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San Ramon, CA USA
As far as Radio Shack goes, you have questions, they have cellphones!
THAT'S A GOOD ONE!!! I'll try and remember it for use later :p

As far as scanners, unless I'm horribly wrong, BCD396XT portable version can scan pretty much all analog, trunking, and digital systems, so why not get it and in case the Boonies do upgrade, then you won't have to buy another scanner. Check your area on RadioReference, it'll probably have the communications system type listed there, and if you are strapped for cash, you might try looking for a cheaper alternative to BCD396XT - The RadioReference Wiki
 

captclint

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Mountaintop, PA
As far as scanners, unless I'm horribly wrong, BCD396XT portable version can scan pretty much all analog, trunking, and digital systems, so why not get it and in case the Boonies do upgrade,
There are lots of trunking systems in your area, so you will need a trunking scanner. Missouri, State of is digital, so a 396Xt would be a good choice if you can afford it. If not, the 346XT is a great analog scanner for the price.
 
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N1BHH

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Mar 31, 2007
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Jackson Square, East Weymouth, MA.
Actually the catch phrase in the scanner world is, "You've got questions, we give you blank stares." Radio Shack is not in the scanner business. How many of them do you see displayed compared to other products? Not many at all. They are far less a Radio store than they were 20 years ago. The sales associates (when did this crap start?) don't know very much about anything they sell, because they don't have a grasp of the concept.

Your choice of scanner(s) is always dependent upon what you want to listen to and the ability of the scanner to listen to what you want. If you have P-25 users in your area, then you need a digital capable radio. If none, then most any other scanner will do. You will want something that is trunking capable, since some systems are trunked. With a little bit of research you should be able to find what you want and have fun.
 

SCPD

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Feb 24, 2001
Messages
65,126
Location
Virginia
Hey folks.

Looking to get a police/fire/emerngey scanner and am not knowledgeable about them . Have looked around the net and at Radio Shack (the salespeople are not knowledgeable about these things.) Looking at Prfo-107 Tripple Trunking, Pro-164-1000, and BC-72XLT. I live in Florissant, Mo. in St. Louis County and would like to get all the Police departments, EMS, Fire, Airport, etc.

Which of these scanners would be the best, and do I need trunking?

Thx. Icdman
I looked at the database for St. Louis county, and for now it appears that they are using a mix of VHF and UHF. Not living in the area though I don't know if that is due to change or not, perhaps a local RR user might now. As for radios, since they are using UHF (and some VHF in the county), you'd be well served by the Pro-163 or Pro-164. One note, as I recall I didn't see any information (including Florissant) that was a trunked system, but again, since I don't live there something in the future for them going to a trunked system.
 

rvictor

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Apr 30, 2006
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1,045
Location
Milwaukee, WI
It looks like the main thing that you would be missing if you don't get a digital scanner is the state system which is described here:

Missouri, State of / St Louis / St Charles/ Independence (P25) Trunking System, Statewide, Missouri - Scanner Frequencies

It's up to you whether the extra cost of a digital scanner is worthwhile to hear those agencies. You should also consider the possibility that other agencies will join this system since one of the goals of most state systems is to provide interoperability between various agencies which are now on separate systems. Someone in the Missouri forum may be able to tell you what is known about agencies that may be planning to join this system.

Dick
 

jclarkr6

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Dec 12, 2007
Messages
155
Location
Coles County, Illinois
Wow, thanks for all the info and very quick to.
Don't ever be afraid (I'm not saying you were) to ask a scanner question in these forums. There are a lot of experienced users out there that enjoy helping newcomers to the hobby. If it wasn't for the good folks here on RadioReference, I never would have become proficient at using scanners. I love this site and value the advice that I have gotten off of it.
 

kruser

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Nov 25, 2007
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3,170
Location
St. Louis County, MO
I'd say to go with one of the digital trunking type scanners for this area.
The state is going all digital and the County just one tax approval for a new system as well. I don't think any details are available for it yet but you can almost figure it will be digital and may even tie in with the cities P25 system.
On another note, many or most municipalities in the are as well as the entire county police are still on regular old analog with few exceptions. The cities of Ladue and Crestwood and I think one of the St.Charles systems are using digital P25 but on single channel VHF and UHF frequencies.
There are a ton of trunked systems in the area but they are mainly standard analog types of all varieties like Motorola and Edacs and LTR. Any normal non digital scanner trunk tracking scanner made today should monitor these systems fine.
But for the future and if you can afford one then I'd go with a digital scanner for this area as things are quickly changing over to all digital.
That way you will be able to listen to about anything.
I've had mixed results with the GRE series PSR500 and 600's which are the same as the Pro 106,197 sold at RadioShack. They are good radios but suffer from front end overload in the area. The built in attenuator helps a lot but can also cause loss of signal on weaker stations. I myself use an external filter to remove the areas paging transmitters on 152 MHz and that helps greatly. I think the GRE radios do well in the 800 MHz bands without much of an overload issue so the attenuator is only really needed when monitoring VHF and UHF. The Uniden BCD996XT and 396XT are also both excellent radios for this area.
I prefer them over the GRE radios but in reality, all brands work well.
One thing to keep in mind, if you go the GRE route then if you purchase the GRE equivalent at RadioShack it does not come with the usb to scanner cable and something else that I cannot remember but if you purchase an actual GRE branded model from say scannermaster then they do come with all accessories.
RadioShack does have the Pro106 on sale for $399 now but by the time you add the $39 for the programming cable and whatever else was missing you will be getting back close to the price that scannermaster charges.
 
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