Noob Questions

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rlshepard

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May 15, 2016
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Kansas City, Mo
Hi I'm new to scanning, really just interested listening in to the what is going on in the world around me.

When the bug bit me I went out and didn't do my research and jumped out and bought a BearCat BCT15X. Seems like a nice scanner, and I really like PC interface with BcProgTool on Ubuntu.. even have it working on 16.10...

Well here in Kansas City where I am an Analog Scanner is pretty useless, Seems everything is digital and either on or moving to The P25 'Metropolitan Area Regional Radio System'. Should have done my research...

So my question is this really, is there value in upgrading to a digital scanner? If I go lay out another $400 for a digital trunking scanner am I going to find that everything is moving to an encrypted system 6 months from now?

Also I'm interested in hearing from anyone that might be in the area, if they are picking up anything on the analog side... I get the KCATA and thats about it. but I haven't moved to a base station antenna, was going to but once I figured out that most of KC was digital I decided to poke around and see what lay of the land is in the digital scanning world, take my time and.

Interested to hear any comments or suggestions....

TIA
 

rctelles

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Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
Messages
19
Hi I'm new to scanning, really just interested listening in to the what is going on in the world around me.

When the bug bit me I went out and didn't do my research and jumped out and bought a BearCat BCT15X. Seems like a nice scanner, and I really like PC interface with BcProgTool on Ubuntu.. even have it working on 16.10...

Well here in Kansas City where I am an Analog Scanner is pretty useless, Seems everything is digital and either on or moving to The P25 'Metropolitan Area Regional Radio System'. Should have done my research...

So my question is this really, is there value in upgrading to a digital scanner? If I go lay out another $400 for a digital trunking scanner am I going to find that everything is moving to an encrypted system 6 months from now?

Also I'm interested in hearing from anyone that might be in the area, if they are picking up anything on the analog side... I get the KCATA and thats about it. but I haven't moved to a base station antenna, was going to but once I figured out that most of KC was digital I decided to poke around and see what lay of the land is in the digital scanning world, take my time and.

Interested to hear any comments or suggestions....

TIA
Looks like you've got a lot to listen to out there. It seems like you know your way around computers and software, I use windows for this because there are a lot of guides on setting up, but you can decode P25 with a couple of RTL-SDR dongles and unitrunker with DSD+. I haven't tried it with P25 but Im listening to trunked digital police/fire in my local area and I did the same as you by jumping in head first lol. Sometimes thats the best way to learn about things, and boy I have. Check out the following guide:

RTL-SDR Tutorial: Following Trunked Radio with Unitrunker - rtl-sdr.com

SDR dongles are about $5-$40 for entry level. Just make sure you have the right whip, because usually the stock isnt good enough.
 

rctelles

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Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
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19
It really is the best way imo to get started in all this and the cheapest too. Good luck. If you need help pm me or post in the sdr forum. Really good help there.
 
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