BCD436HP: P25 Programming

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Astialis

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Hi!

First things first, I just started messing around with trunking, so total noob in this area.

I bought a BCD436HP a few weeks ago, and I made a Custom Search, from frequencies 850Mhz to 868Mhz. I've noticed three different behaviors while searching:

1. On some frequencies, the scanner stops, nothing is heard, and the letters DAT appear at the bottom of the LCD screen. Are these frequencies control channels? If so, do I just save them to a new Site? If I find more than one, do I save them to the same Site or to a new Site each?
2. On some frequencies, the scanner stops, and a loud noise can be heard. Some people compare this to the sound of an engine. No DAT on these. Are these control channels too? analog?
3. On other frequencies, the scanner stops, no sound or voice, and a few things appear on the LCD. At the bottom, "Slot1" flashes with the letters CON just to the right. At mid screen, the words "Color Code: #" flashes, and a few other things, like "TG: ##", "Net: ###". Replace # with numbers. What are these?
4. On other frequencies I can actually hear people talking. Do I save these?

I've heard/read that I only need the control channels, and that the scanner will do the rest. How true is this?

Again, sorry for my ignorance in this. I've been reading and messing around with this for weeks and have not been able to make it work...

Thanks for any help you can provide me with!
 

jonwienke

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1. On some frequencies, the scanner stops, nothing is heard, and the letters DAT appear at the bottom of the LCD screen. Are these frequencies control channels? If so, do I just save them to a new Site? If I find more than one, do I save them to the same Site or to a new Site each?
Yes, those are control channels. As to Site configuration, it depends. If a single system broadcasts multiple control channels (usually only 2) from a single physical location, they should all be placed in the same Site for that system. But if the control channels belong to different systems, or they are broadcast from different locations, they should be placed under different Sites.

You can use NAC codes to help sort things out. If 2 control channels have the same NAC code, there's a good chance they are belong to the same Site, and there's an even better chance they belong to the same system.
 

ofd8001

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That "engine running" sound, also called "motor-boating" is typical of a control channel. It is data telling other radios on the system what to do, such as go to a given voice frequency. There's also a chance this noise could be a format your scanner cannot decode, such as NXDN, or possibly some form of encryption.

While your scanner will work fine with programming only control channel frequencies, my preference is to program all frequencies (control and voice). That way if an alternate frequency is used for control channel purposes, you will continue to receive the system. Your model scanner has lots of memory space, so you don't have to conserve.

If your system is found in the Sentinel database, just append it as a Favorites List. All the right "stuff" is brought in.

Don't be apologetic for lack of knowledge. We all started that way.
 

Astialis

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Hi again!

Thank you all for the replies!

So far, I've got 68 frequencies, including control channels and voice channels. My guess is, there are at least two or three systems? Anyway, since I have no information at all about the system or systems, and the database from RR is very outdated, this is probably going to be painfully slow. Just for testing purposes, I saved all 68 frequencies to a single site, and have been using ID scanning and ID searching and have no heard a single conversation. :-(

I have an older scanner doing a custom search of frequencies from 850Mhz to 868Mhz at the same time as the BCD436HP is scanning, and I hear conversation on the older scanner, on the same 68 frequencies I have programmed to the BCD436HP, but no voice on the 436, although I can see some TGIDs.

Thanks again for all the help!
 
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