PSR-800 Record Feature

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DaveIN

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I'm curious how others use the record feature on the PSR-800.

I use it as a record a specific frequency or TGID most of the time, and record everything on special occasions or events.
 

troymail

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I record everything - anything I program via EZ Scan is configured to record. I use it to help identify unknown talkgroups and for playback in case I didn't understand/hear what they said.

At this point everything that is recorded also gets copied to my harddrive before being deleted.
 

kg4ojj

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Troymail,

Walk me through your workflow for saving audio files to your computer. (Not every step; overall process).

Is this a daily or weekly exercise? Do you have two mSD cards and swap them out everytime you download the audio?

Just curious, as my -800 is enroute.
 

troymail

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Typically I copy off daily or every two days -- daily when I'm trying to capture new talkgroups on new systems in my area... or there is something of more interest from the day that I am aware of and want to see what I "caught"

I remove the SD card from the radio and insert it into the slot on my laptop.

I usually review the files via the EZ Scan audio tab and then copy them to my hard drive

I update the programming for the system (add new talkgroups to the VFolder) in EZ Scan

I then copy the updated VFolder(s) back onto my SD card

I then remove them from the SD card and return the card back to the radio
 

kg4ojj

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Thanks for the post.

DaveIN's original post got me thinking how to use this feature, with considerations for my work, etc.

If I left the scanner running (yet hidden) in my vehicle, I might be able to find and add new talkgroups.

This recording feature is great addition to the GRE (digital scanner) line.


I know from other posts that the audio files are relatively small. Is this true in your experience?

Thinking of starting with the 2GB card but have a 16GB card available, too.
 

troymail

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I use a 2Gb card and have ALOT of Vfolders programmed -- you can go a long time with 2Gb....I think I've only run out once when I left the radio run while I was on vacation -- depends on how much activity you try to record - I generally don't record "routine" stuff (or chatty police!)
 

kg4ojj

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I've had my -800 for a few days now. I agree with Troymail........record everything.

It's really cool when you're trying to figure out a new TRS or user for that frequency, etc.

Did the "hide it while out of the vehicle" trick and found a few new talkgroups on a 'new' TRS.

With a 16GB card installed, I'm not deleting the 'good' stuff - just the 'trash'

Just hope the batteries make it through the work day tomorrow (in the stealthy recording mode).....
 

Arizona_Scanner

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I have a larger class 10 card, and everything is recorded at all times. That way if there are interesting things, I can always retrieve them when I want and file them away on the PC. I never manage to fill the card even with regular listening morning, noon, and night. Once or twice a week, I do an erase if I know nothing interesting happened during that period. Works like a charm, and ALL transmissions are always there on record this way. I use a 4 gig class 10 patriot micro SDHC.
 

Arizona_Scanner

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I've had my -800 for a few days now. I agree with Troymail........record everything.

It's really cool when you're trying to figure out a new TRS or user for that frequency, etc.

Did the "hide it while out of the vehicle" trick and found a few new talkgroups on a 'new' TRS.

With a 16GB card installed, I'm not deleting the 'good' stuff - just the 'trash'

Just hope the batteries make it through the work day tomorrow (in the stealthy recording mode).....
On batteries....

The best bet I have found is Maha Powerex 2700 batteries, two sets so you can rotate, leaving the radio on external power whenever possible. Those batteries give about a half day of steady use for me, with backlight only on during active RX>
 

DonS

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The audio files are 8000 bytes per second, plus a 320-byte header at the start of each file. Also, a small amount of space is used for the directory structures, etc.

1GB holds about 115,000 seconds of recordings - or about 32 hours.

The scanner stops recording when there's less than 100MB of space left. If you have CC logging turned on, that feature will take a maximum of 400MB. Presuming 100MB total of RRDB and CDAT folders, that means that all but 600MB of the card space is available for recording.

The stock 2GB card would give you roughly 44 hours of recordings. A 16GB card would give you about 480 hours.
 

safetyobc

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I record my local PD, State, SO, and Fire Dispatch channels. If something major happens, I go back and listen to them. If not, I just delete everything and start over every week or so.
 

Audiodave1

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I use mine pretty much exclusively for finding and id'ing new freqs, primarily feds. It's also great for taking to a sporting event. I find the spectrum sweeper superior to close call especially in this environment.

The recording functionality is key to the effectiveness for the above....but I sure wish the audio would record and display more than the first P25 RID of a transmission.

Dave
 

DonS

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On batteries....

The best bet I have found is Maha Powerex 2700 batteries, two sets so you can rotate, leaving the radio on external power whenever possible. Those batteries give about a half day of steady use for me, with backlight only on during active RX>
Ditto on the Maha Powerex 2700. I'm also a new fan of the Sanyo Eneloop 2000.

As part of some recent testing, I did this:
* Brand-new Powerex 2700 batteries, fresh from the Maha C9000
* Monitoring the Colorado DTRS, one site, 183 talkgroups
* Only about 25 talkgroups are reliably active
* Recording 13 of the active talkgroups
* Backlight on all the time ("Low")
* CC logging turned on
* Volume level: 14
The PSR-800 ran for 13.5 hours. It recorded 3.2 hours of audio in 1,106 recordings. This 3.2 hours does not represent the total time that the scanner was "talking", since not all of the talkgroups were recorded.

A subsequent test:
* Brand-new Eneloop 2000 batteries, no charge (straight from the package)
* Monitoring the Colorado DTRS, one site, 183 talkgroups
* Recording all activity
* Backlight on all the time ("Low")
* CC logging turned on
* Volume level: 20
The PSR-800 ran for 7.5 hours. It recorded 2.55 hours of audio in 874 recordings.

(In both of the above tests, some talkgroup objects had the tri-color LED programmed. The effects, though, are negligible, since the LED is also subject to the "Low" setting for the backlight and takes an insignificant amount of power.)
 

safetyobc

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Ditto on the Maha Powerex 2700. I'm also a new fan of the Sanyo Eneloop 2000.

As part of some recent testing, I did this:
* Brand-new Powerex 2700 batteries, fresh from the Maha C9000
* Monitoring the Colorado DTRS, one site, 183 talkgroups
* Only about 25 talkgroups are reliably active
* Recording 13 of the active talkgroups
* Backlight on all the time ("Low")
* CC logging turned on
* Volume level: 14
The PSR-800 ran for 13.5 hours. It recorded 3.2 hours of audio in 1,106 recordings. This 3.2 hours does not represent the total time that the scanner was "talking", since not all of the talkgroups were recorded.
Impressive. Just placed my order for the Powerex 2700's!! Already have the Eneloop batteries.
 

policefreak

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Yes record is a great feature! The only problem is whenever I try to listen to certain systems with P-25 transmissions, it doesn't pick up the Radio IDs on the recorded audio, even though I have my radio set to display radio ID and Radio ID alert. Is it just that the system isn't coming in well enough, or perhaps because several units come across each transmission, it can't simply pick up one Radio ID. Mind you, while the radio is going live, it will display the radio ID's, its just that I can't see them in my recorded files. I'm working on a project to identify all the RIDs of a certain system.
 

troymail

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Yes record is a great feature! The only problem is whenever I try to listen to certain systems with P-25 transmissions, it doesn't pick up the Radio IDs on the recorded audio, even though I have my radio set to display radio ID and Radio ID alert. Is it just that the system isn't coming in well enough, or perhaps because several units come across each transmission, it can't simply pick up one Radio ID. Mind you, while the radio is going live, it will display the radio ID's, its just that I can't see them in my recorded files. I'm working on a project to identify all the RIDs of a certain system.
I think the issue is that the recording is initiated with the data about the recording (talkgroup, radio ids, etc.) before the ID is captured from the stream -- many times I see a zero for the radio ID at first but then the display updates when the radio ID if finally captured - but by that time, it's too late - the recording is already started. I suppose this could be improved (or maybe not) by storing the info in some type of memory for up __ seconds to gather as much data as possible before writing to the SD card. There may be reasons why this won't work - some pretty obvious... on the other hand if you have alot of things to do (as a developer) you need to decide what is high on the priority list and what can wait (or never get done)..
 

W2PMX

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on the other hand if you have alot of things to do (as a developer) you need to decide what is high on the priority list and what can wait (or never get done)..
As a developer, I see that as a marketing-driven company. "The scanner goers on sale on xx-xx-xxxx." Whether the development is done or not - so it better be done by then.

An engineering-driven company releases product when it's done. It doesn't promise a release date. You figure out what the product has to do, then you figure out how long that will take. You add time for "gotchas". Then you find that almost all your products are released within your internal estimate, and with all the features you planned.

It's not rocket science - we do it every day. Sure, a few things slip, or an almost-never-hit bug gets out once in a while. But if I did it GRE's way I'd be unemployed. There's a bug and I won't fix it? The only time I say that is to my ex-employer. Which my current one would quickly become if I said it.

Doesn't GRE even test their scanners (or firmware updates) before releasing them?
 
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