Pro96 vs PSR500

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cbro298

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I am getting ready to take the plunge to a new digital scanner.I have read many post and was convinced that the PSR500 was the way to go but now have seen some recent post about GRE that i am beginning to think twice.I have learned a great deal from this site and just want to make sure that i get the best product that i can.So please,What are the pros and cons of the 2 scanners.Do they have very similar capabilities or is one heads above the other.Also what download would work best with the Pro96
 

steveh552

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I just got a 96, it is a nice scanner, very basic as it it does not have all the bells and whistles that the 500 has, but for my purpose it works. It is made by GRE as well.

Bad part about the 96 is it does not come with pc cables or anything but the battery holders.
 

gd9704

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There have been a handful of GRE whiners here in the last few days.

Don't listen to them. They are a minority.

99% of GRE owners (me being one) are very VERY happy with their scanners. The 500 is state of the art, and GRE continues to upgrade the firmware to improve an already awesome scanner.

Just get it. You won't regret it!!!!

Greg
 

ka3jjz

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The 500 has a hot front end - too hot in some cases, and tends to overload at times, from everything I've been reading about it. To me, if you're in an urban area, that would be a definite con.

However, the 500 can do a few things that the 96 cannot - such as;

-Military air (yes, the PRO96 can have this range unlocked, but performance is spotty - with some it works, others it's deaf as a stone. Not surprising, since this scanner wasn't designed to receive there)

-I understand (you should validate this if this is important to you) that the 500 has ESK EDACS support. The 96 does not

-The 500 can log and record audio while scanning. The 96 cannot do this as its not in the firmware to allow for it.

-The 500 can trunk in the 700 and 380 mhz ranges; the 96 cannot.

-I see that UniTrunker (a dedicated trunking package that decodes the control channel and shows you all manner of interesting things) can be used on the 500 without modifying it. The PRO-96 has a utility called PRO96Com, it's only useful on P25 systems. UniTrunker shows you lots more, and is much more flexible.

If you go for the 96, run - don't walk - and get Win96 from Starrsoft. You will undoubtedly need a USB-serial cable (most newer PCs don't have serial ports anymore). Regardless if you get a 96 or the 500, get a premium subscription and you will be able to download data from the database into the editor for the software. Each of the popular packages for the 500 has this capability - the only other software for the 96 that does is the recently-released BuTel ARC96.

Here are a few links for you to read;

http://wiki.radioreference.com/index.php/PSR-500

http://wiki.radioreference.com/index.php/Pro-96

http://wiki.radioreference.com/index.php/Win96

http://www.radioreference.com/apps/subscription/


73 Mike
 
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joetnymedic

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my only question applies to both the psr 500 and 600. can they both do icall and can it do icall wildcard like the uniden 396, etc?
 

emscapt9816

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My 2 cents...

As mentioned previously, both scanners are made by GRE. Both have overload issues. Both are sitting next to each other on my table, and using an FM notch filter to cut out the overload, both receive fantastic. Both have excellent digital decoding. Both cost alot of money. However, since the PRO-96 has less features than the PSR-500, and the PRO-96 is to be replaced by the (GRE-made) PRO-106, the PRO-96 can be had for less. Cadillac versus Chevy.
 

DiGiTaLD

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IMHO, my 500 is a far superior machine to my 96 when it comes to Motorola analog and digital voice operation, and P25 trunked operation. P25 digital voice is outstanding out of the 500. The vast majority of the time, it mutes perfectly, and the audio sounds deeper and richer than the same audio from the 96. One thing I never liked about the 96 is how you hear a slight audible hiss at the end of a P25 transmission. That does not happen with the 500. Its no XTS, but its pretty darn good for a scanner.

In comparison to the 96, the 500 seems to resist intermodulation a little better, at least on 800 MHz, which is all I really use it for. As for the memory and programming configuration, there is absolutely no comparison. The 500's object-oriented system, once you understand it and learn how to use it, is epic superiority in comparison to the 96's old school banked system. I would recommend software, though, as it makes life a lot easier.

The memory capacity of the 500 is amazing, both in the working memory and the V-scanner capacity. If you are going to travel with a scanner and want to pre-program the data for everywhere you're going to be, the 500 is the one to have. Right now I'm only using 1248 blocks of the available 1852 blocks of memory and have only occupied nine scan lists out of the possible twenty for my primary file. That includes 27 sites of the statewide Motorola SmartZone Omnilink system, three additional standalone trunked systems (one P25, one EDACS, and one Motorola Smartnet), 1,182 talkgroups total for all systems, and 12 conventional channels. And that's only my primary file. I already have files set up and loaded for out-of-state road trips, configured to follow several statewide trunking systems with appropriate talkgroups, and local conventional channels, and all told I'm only using three total V-scanner folders out of the available twenty. You can't easily do that with a 96.

Bottom line, if 800 MHz trunking with great P25 digital voice capability is what you are looking for, spend the extra bucks and choose the 500 over the 96. I like my 96, its served its purpose, but the 500 is definitely the next big leap forward from the manufacturer who brought us the 96. And no, I don't work for GRE. :D
 

coldbricks

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The Pro-96 and PSR500 are both high end and very good radios. I have a Pro-96 and have used a 500, but I didnt hear of the 500 till i owned the 96 for a while. Not that this is to discredit the 500, but you could compare the Pro-96 to the pro-106, as the 106 is pretty much identical to the 500, and replaced the 96..so in that regard the PSR500 is kind of the 'successor' to the Pro-96

My $.02 here, but if I was going to buy a digital radio I would wait for the BCD396XT..it looks like it will smoke the competition.

The pro-96 does not do icall.
 
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fmon

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You will never - ever get any digital Uniden at the Nov - Dec price of the 106 and 197. $292.00 including sales tax and delivery to my house.
 
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The 500 SMOKES the 96 on digital voice decoding, and in terms of working well with a simulcast system, at least in my own extensive comparison testing.

I saw it like this on my P25 simulcast system:

The 96 / 2096 got blown away by the 996 / 396;

The 996 / 396 were slightly bettered by the 500 / 600.

Nothing sure here, but my new 106 & 197 seem to edge the PSR radios (keep in mind they have different DSP and firmware than their PSR brothers), though it is very very close.

The 96 and 2096 got their minds BLOWN by the PRWN simulcast system, and were awful. They were sold in very short order.

Just my two cents.
 

iMONITOR

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Nothing sure here, but my new 106 & 197 seem to edge the PSR radios (keep in mind they have different DSP and firmware than their PSR brothers), though it is very very close.

The only difference I'm aware of is that the firmware is not interchangeable between the GRE and Radio Shack branded scanners. Most likely this was done for some type of licensing agreement. The version numbers are the same, and I'm inclined to believe the functions and performance is the same.

I've owned the PSR-500, and 600. Currently I own the PRO-106, and 197. I can understand your thinking that the Radio Shack models have and edge, as I've been very satisfied with mine. But I honestly could not tell any difference between them.
 
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