Provoice Frustration

BCFreak

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Aug 7, 2008
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Nichols Hills
I bought a BCD436HP and have been using for years listening to OKC FD and PD.

Lately, I have noticed garbled/ choppy signals on OKC wide simulcast.

Thinking it was my scanner I bought an SDS 200.

Paid to upgrade the provoice and still having the same issues.

tried in different locations.

I was thinking this is just the radios/ old system, but the person who shares OKC Fire for Broadcastify is using an SDR dongle and getting none of this?

I need to see if someone can explain this, or they are also having the issues on similar HW.
 

Turner101

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OKC is switching to a new system anyway soon-ish. Also I wouldnt compare your signal/quality with the online feed..
 

toad99

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I only listen to the core layer, and haven't noticed any unusual audio problems. Using a 100, 200, 436 and 536. The 200 and 536 are on different antennas. Of course, the OKC system has wild volume fluctuations, audio overload at the transmitting end (especially the FD), sometimes the person talking sounds like they are right in the room with you, and sometimes they sound miles away. Sometimes on my 436 it sounds like the speaker is blown, but it's just their audio. I don't have any of these issues on OKWIN, except for the awful analog simulcast distortion, which neither the 100 or 200 can fix.
 

mam1081

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I've heard some of what you are mentioning - I think they may have changed a few things while preparing for the P25 system, but don't know that for sure. Certainly the simulcast Provoice is giving more issues than I remember in the past too - on my 536HP. I notice it more while driving and in specific areas. Is that what you notice also?

On the audio side, I think the updated radios (XG75) have some new DSP/firmware that must have awesome auto-gain control, and I think the FD set theirs way higher than PD - so scanning both is a pain with audio levels. The FD is very loud - likely over-driving my speaker, while the PD is whispering (the units anyhow - the dispatchers sound ok usually).
 

toad99

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There are times when I can't understand a single word the FD dispatcher is saying. I think he has his mouth right on the microphone, like a CBer would do. Sometimes he sounds like it's a real effort to say anything at all.
 

mam1081

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I agree...and have noticed that the SDS200 does seem to have pretty decent AGC / DSP on the P25 system this weekend while the FD Alert has been patched...tones and voice are all digital - sounds pretty decent! Maybe better than the PV side.
 

toad99

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I don't know - the FD dispatch on the P25 system sounds just as awful as the Provoice (too loud, overloaded). The EMSA dispatch is almost always unintelligible, just sounds like a bunch of grunts.
 

mam1081

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What are you using for a receiver? I think the DSP makes a big difference between different radios. Maybe I can post some audio between different radios later...
 

Turner101

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I don't know - the FD dispatch on the P25 system sounds just as awful as the Provoice (too loud, overloaded). The EMSA dispatch is almost always unintelligible, just sounds like a bunch of grunts.
Actual voice on the P25 II system sounds really good when its not a patch or whatever they are doing now. When the techs and PD dispatches who came in on their off days for OT were helping the radio techs test the system at various part of the city it sounded really good. These patches are just that, a patch. EMSA is also an encrypted patch so it sounds worse (IMO). It even sounds bad on the fire dept radios them selves vs the emsa radios. Plus they are two way different radio systems being patched together.
Add all of that and with using a scanner with simulcast distortion you have a mess on your hands. Best bet is to sit and wait. OKC will change over within time. If your using a scanner, even the new SDR type scanners will still have issues with distortion.
 

toad99

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Yes, the patch from the Okla Co sheriff's department is completely garbled. This morning the radio shop has been doing audio tests; they sound pretty good. Any P25 on the OKWIN system sounds great.
 

toad99

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Well, my only experience with OKWIN P25 here in OKC is mainly the Chickasaw Lighthorse dispatch and OBNDD, and they have excellent audio. I guess that someday the site here will transition to P25. I'm just too far north to reach Norman.
 

Turner101

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Well, my only experience with OKWIN P25 here in OKC is mainly the Chickasaw Lighthorse dispatch and OBNDD, and they have excellent audio. I guess that someday the site here will transition to P25. I'm just too far north to reach Norman.
Yeah I have listened to them as well. So far everything I have heard is superb!!
 

Ensnared

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OCFD Alert - on SDS200

OCFD Alert - on Unication G5

Both audio files using internal recording functions on radio (so I didn't set the levels).
What software did you use to drop the recording on post 16? When I want to share my recordings, I have used You Tube since it the only one I know of that can be used to drop a hyperlinked recording.

I am fixing to travel through OKC, so I am paying close attention to this thread.
 

mam1081

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I put them on a dropbox account, then shared the file with a link, and posted the link there. It did seem to be limited when I was trying to post, but I can understand. With dropbox, you can set it to allow anyone read (or write if you wanted) access to a file/folder.
 

Freqed

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Do you guys still do the Monthly meet and greet in the OKC area? I used to get notification of them but haven't in a while. Would like to see some of the new gear in action, especially the G4/G5 units.
 
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