Providence Police and Fire Scanning

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MrAntiDigital

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I finally got to put my GRE portable digital scanner to work in Providence. I basically scanned just the Police and Fire Dispatch. Being on digital 800, I was curious on how it would pick up. I turned on the unit when I got to the Warwick area and heard nothing. As I drove closer into Cranston, I heard a lot of garbled messages. It wasn't until I actually got into Providence that I started to pick them up.
I hung out at the Dunkin Donuts around 300 Broad St (near McDonalds and Burger King). While parked there I heard "nothing" for about 30-45 minutes. As I started to leave, I saw a piece of fire apparatus responding to a call. Apparently where I was parked was a Dead Spot. I just couldn't believe that.
I then parked at Roger Williams Park and I was able to pick up both depts. When heading home, I lost Providence around Exit 15, just a few miles outside the city. Maybe a small 800 band scanner antenna would make a difference, I don't know.
Bottom line, I hope there aren't too many more depts going to this 800 digital. For my own selfish reasons, bring back the old UHF (Police) and High band (fire). I had no problem picking them up then.
Anybody else agree ?
 
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garys

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Providence seems to operate only on the Providence site, not the North or South simulcast sites. It's fairly low powered and what you describe is what I've observed as well. It helps a lot if you have a good mobile antenna, even if you are using a portable scanner.

Bottom Line. It doesn't matter what you want, a lot of agencies and the RISP are moving to the 800 statewide system. As the system is built out, you might find that the signal improves as they find and fix dead spots. That being said, I don't expect that Providence itself will get a lot stronger.
 

MrAntiDigital

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Thank you for that reply. I first thought that maybe it was just "my" scanner. I'll do what you said and get a mobile antenna. I'll still be using my portable scanner (GRE) with it, and now would you have any recommendations. I'd rather stick with a magnetic one if possible.
 

garys

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Thank you for that reply. I first thought that maybe it was just "my" scanner. I'll do what you said and get a mobile antenna. I'll still be using my portable scanner (GRE) with it, and now would you have any recommendations. I'd rather stick with a magnetic one if possible.
I don't have any specific recommendations other than something optimized for 800 Mhz. I bought a cheap one on Ebay that seems to work. It has a small magnetic base. The only thing it doesn't have is a label with the name. :D
 

MrAntiDigital

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I use a open coil 800Mhz mag mount on my SUV for the Riscon system. It works great! I can get all three systems Providence,North & South Zones from West Warwick when mobil in my area on it.

A8063 - Antenex 800MHz A-Base Antenna (806-896MHz, 3dB, Chrome)
Thank you very much for that info regarding the Mag Mounted Mobile Antenna. I've been checking a few out ever since "garys" suggested that. It looks like I will lean in your direction. That is the information I needed.
I'll order it this week and let you know how it works out. If I can pick it up in West Warwick, that would make a huge difference in my reception.
I sure miss listening to Providence Fire at my home in Norwich, Ct (about 45 miles away).
 

Engineerguy

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Hi, I am new to scanners, but based on some research have tentatively decided on a RS Pro 106 for Providence and Cranston police and fire. Do you think this model will accommodate my needs?
 

MrAntiDigital

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I use a open coil 800Mhz mag mount on my SUV for the Riscon system. It works great! I can get all three systems Providence,North & South Zones from West Warwick when mobil in my area on it.

A8063 - Antenex 800MHz A-Base Antenna (806-896MHz, 3dB, Chrome)
I ordered this antenna. A little expensive and then had to also order a magnetic mobile base for my car. Total cost came to about $80. A little expensive BUT this antenna worked EXCELLENT. In fact, not only for 800 digital, but GREAT for High and Ultra High band too. Actually I used it in the Hartford area. I haven't been in Providence lately.

In the Hartford area, I was able to pick up 800 digital on the Hartford Police about 10 miles outside the city line. The ultrahigh and high band was heard even farther out (Agawam, Mass Six Flags) loud and clear.

I used my portable scanner and mounted the magnetic antenna to the roof of the car, as recommended on the included instructions.

Great antenna. Thank you very much for that info. I highly recommend it.
 

SCPD

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I ordered this antenna. A little expensive and then had to also order a magnetic mobile base for my car. Total cost came to about $80. A little expensive BUT this antenna worked EXCELLENT. In fact, not only for 800 digital, but GREAT for High and Ultra High band too. Actually I used it in the Hartford area. I haven't been in Providence lately.

In the Hartford area, I was able to pick up 800 digital on the Hartford Police about 10 miles outside the city line. The ultrahigh and high band was heard even farther out (Agawam, Mass Six Flags) loud and clear.

I used my portable scanner and mounted the magnetic antenna to the roof of the car, as recommended on the included instructions.

Great antenna. Thank you very much for that info. I highly recommend it.
Im glad it worked out for you! I was also pleasantly surprised with its performance on VHF and UHF as well. Enjoy!
 
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