Newby needs advice on pre-programmed scanners

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jkilvik

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I'm about to purchase a new scanner (BC15XLT?) for use in Clark Co. WA. so I need trunking capabilities but the required programming is a serious obstacle. I have a Mac so the various software programming aids are not available to me and I have no interest in jury rigging my Mac with Windows emulators, etc.

At least one of the vendors offers to preprogram the scanner for my local area for $70. The cost doesn't seem out of line assuming they do a good job of finding the frequencies in this area but I'd appreciate some advice or recommendations before I spend that kind of money.
 

JoeyC

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$70 for programming is a rip off! What happens when you find out there is something else you want programmed or things change? more $$$$
I would definately jury rig and buy my own software and program it myself. It has always taken me at LEAST 20 or more programmings to get my scanners to where I want them.
 

K7CAR

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Monroe, WA
I would agree, any $$$ spent to program your radio is a rip off. You won't have a clue how to operate or make changes if some thing goes wrong. I have the 15X and yes, it's a bugger to learn, but not that difficult if you put some time in. There's a wealth of information online and this forum.

I'm in WA state Snohomish Cnty, so a bit out of your range, but check on this website Intercept Radio Forums • Index page This is by far the best database for frequencies and information. As far as software I can't help you there I run a PC. Get what ever you need to run Windows on your Mac and install FreeScan. It won't cost you anything and is the easiest software to program your radio. The BCT15X is well supported by 6-8 different programs, so you'll have a wide variety to pick from. My go to program now is ID Tracker3 (free) and ProScan ($50) for controlling my scanner. FreeScan to program.

PM me or jump on Intercept if you need help. I'd be more than happy to do what I can. I've freshly endured the pain of the new world order in modern scanners after a 10 year hiatus, so join the fun!.....:)
 

N8IAA

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Fortunately, GA
I'm about to purchase a new scanner (BC15XLT?) for use in Clark Co. WA. so I need trunking capabilities but the required programming is a serious obstacle. I have a Mac so the various software programming aids are not available to me and I have no interest in jury rigging my Mac with Windows emulators, etc.

At least one of the vendors offers to preprogram the scanner for my local area for $70. The cost doesn't seem out of line assuming they do a good job of finding the frequencies in this area but I'd appreciate some advice or recommendations before I spend that kind of money.
ScanNow.org - The Home of FreeSCAN! FREE programming software for the BC15XLT! I believe the programming cable comes with the scanner. (I could be wrong). Premium subscription to Radio Reference for part of a year.....under $10. You then can do the importing of frequencies and set the scanner up how YOU want it. I would never pay anyone $70 to program a radio. Period......
Larry
 

jkilvik

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Jan 28, 2010
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This isn't what I was hoping to hear but I truly appreciate all your suggestions and recommendations. I'm of an age where the number of new tricks I'm capable of learning is limited. The complexity of a new scanner is intimidating enough without the additional problems associated with using Windows on a Mac, especially for someone who has trouble programming the remote.
Obviously I need to rethink my plans for a new scanner.
 

K7CAR

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Monroe, WA
Sorry, the BCT15X is not a plug and play scanner by any means, so if you have any doubts at all then pass on Uniden. You'll have to put in the time if you want to get any kind of satisfaction out of it. There are pre programmed frequencies that cover Police, State Patrol and DOL right out of the box, so you will have some.

If you're dead set against having to mess with a scanner then buy the new Radio Shack 107. It's a hand held scanner, but you'll have it up and running in less than 10 mins. It comes with a data card pre programmed with the Radio Reference data base, so you'll have a basic start to grow with.

I found the RS 107 too reliant on software and the database is very poor for my state, so returned it after 2 weeks. For the casual, no fuss, simple scanner listener the 107 works well for many.
 

jkilvik

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...I found the RS 107 too reliant on software and the database is very poor for my state,...
Thanks for the advice and pointing me towards the RS107. I like the concept but live in WA so your database comment is giving me pause. Would you mind expanding on the database deficiency for me? I live in Clark Co.
 

K7CAR

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Nov 12, 2009
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Monroe, WA
Check out the data base on the Intercept link I posted above and you'll see it's far superior for your county. I see you have quite a few systems and frequencies around the Vancouver area and Portland. You should have plenty to listen too. The 107 will get you up and running with the least amount of fuss, so you'll have to decide what's more important.
 

DAVE605

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Feb 21, 2006
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Sorry, the BCT15X is not a plug and play scanner by any means, so if you have any doubts at all then pass on Uniden. You'll have to put in the time if you want to get any kind of satisfaction out of it. There are pre programmed frequencies that cover Police, State Patrol and DOL right out of the box, so you will have some.

If you're dead set against having to mess with a scanner then buy the new Radio Shack 107. It's a hand held scanner, but you'll have it up and running in less than 10 mins. It comes with a data card pre programmed with the Radio Reference data base, so you'll have a basic start to grow with.

I found the RS 107 too reliant on software and the database is very poor for my state, so returned it after 2 weeks. For the casual, no fuss, simple scanner listener the 107 works well for many.
Are you from Monroe, WA then ? If so I could use some help w/ my radio shack pro 106 scanner pls...
pls email me at davespilde@yahoo.com
thank you..
 

K7CAR

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Nov 12, 2009
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Location
Monroe, WA
Yes, I'm still in Monroe WA. I don't know that much about the newer Radio Shack scanners as I have 2 Unidens. I can give you help with frequencies or check on the Intercept link I posted up above. I'm sure some one can help you there. Email sent.
 
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