Reception issue with BCD436

AzNorm

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I live outside of Phoenix and have a new BCD436. The simulcast broadcasts that I pick up are clear but my problem is I’m not picking up many broadcasts. My question is other than the antenna and bad location, would I pick up more with a SD100? Or should I concentrate on the antenna?
 

jonwienke

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I live outside of Phoenix and have a new BCD436. The simulcast broadcasts that I pick up are clear but my problem is I’m not picking up many broadcasts. My question is other than the antenna and bad location, would I pick up more with a SD100? Or should I concentrate on the antenna?
The 436 is not designed for simulcast. You need the SDS100 to receive that system reliably.
 

jonwienke

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Yes. It is specifically designed to receive simulcast.
 

budevans

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I live outside of Phoenix and have a new BCD436. The simulcast broadcasts that I pick up are clear but my problem is I’m not picking up many broadcasts. My question is other than the antenna and bad location, would I pick up more with a SD100? Or should I concentrate on the antenna?
Per your post, it doesn't like a simulcast problem. Typically simulcast issues are garbled and or broken audio. Not hearing the amount of traffic that you'd expect would be a different issue.

The SDS100 & BCD436 have very similar signal reception (sensitivity). If that's the case, then the SDS100 wouldn't resolve your issue.

If I was you, before buying anything I would go to the Arizona forum and get some feedback from users in the same area.
 

jonwienke

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How many signal bars is the 436 showing? If its showing a good signal, but still not receiving consistently, weak signal isn't the problem, the simulcast is.
 

maus92

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I live outside of Phoenix and have a new BCD436. The simulcast broadcasts that I pick up are clear but my problem is I’m not picking up many broadcasts. My question is other than the antenna and bad location, would I pick up more with a SD100? Or should I concentrate on the antenna?
The Phoenix area is a tough environment for simulcast, and the 436 does poorly there from what others have said. An SDS radio *should* work better, as well as a Unication pager if you can live with its limited functionality. If you can afford it, buy a SDS100 from a vendor that accepts returns with no restocking fee - aka Walmart or Amazon, and return the 436 if you can. You can use essentially the same programming as your 436. You will be much happier.
 

cfsimmont

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The Phoenix area is a tough environment for simulcast, and the 436 does poorly there from what others have said. An SDS radio *should* work better, as well as a Unication pager if you can live with its limited functionality. If you can afford it, buy a SDS100 from a vendor that accepts returns with no restocking fee - aka Walmart or Amazon, and return the 436 if you can. You can use essentially the same programming as your 436. You will be much happier.
There are several users on the forum that have reported good results with the 436 in the Phoenix area. I think it has more to do with the location than, some areas are just bad for reception.
 

maus92

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There are several users on the forum that have reported good results with the 436 in the Phoenix area. I think it has more to do with the location than, some areas are just bad for reception.
Right, but this user is reporting problems, so he may be in a bad location for the 436. Older scanners not specifically designed for simulcast can work well on simulcast systems IF the receive location favors (is close to) ONE tower site of a simulcast system. If you are relatively equidistant to multiple tower sites, that's when you have problems. I live within 1/2 mile of a simulcast tower site of my state's 700 simulcast system and the other tower sites are much farther away (relatively,) so my 536 works fairly well (the 436 somewhat worse, so it was sold.) The SDS radios and the G5 are flawless.

There are other issues apparently in the Phoenix area that affect reception, so having a strong return policy is vital IMO.
 

maus92

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Per your post, it doesn't like a simulcast problem. Typically simulcast issues are garbled and or broken audio. Not hearing the amount of traffic that you'd expect would be a different issue.

The SDS100 & BCD436 have very similar signal reception (sensitivity). If that's the case, then the SDS100 wouldn't resolve your issue.

If I was you, before buying anything I would go to the Arizona forum and get some feedback from users in the same area.
One of the issues you can have with a receiver not designed specifically to receive simulcast system is missing whole transmissions (a channel grant is obscured, thus the receiver is not steered to a voice channel,) while others transmissions are received with good quality, so you cannot rule out simulcast reception problems.
 

bob550

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We'll need a better explanation of what you mean by "not picking up many broadcasts". What is the system you're monitoring, and how active should it be? How did you determine that you may be missing transmissions? Looking at the Regional Wireless Cooperative system in your area, many talkgroups appear to be fully encrypted, meaning you'll not be able to monitor those particular ones. That could reduce the activity levels for this system.
 

maus92

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The OP's location is Maricopa County. There are several simulcast trunked systems in the area that are mostly in the clear (excepting tactical channels) so there should be plenty of traffic to monitor. Specifically, the TOPAZ system carries Gilbert PD, the Maricopa County P25 and legacy systems, and the RWC all have plenty of non-encrypted TGs.
 
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cfsimmont

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Simulcast C on the PHX RWC is closest to Gilbert and would be a good place to start. Chandler PD & Maricopa PD as well as PHX FD RDC Dispatch & some tac channels are carried by Simulcast C. Depending on what the OP is trying to monitor will depend on what Simulcast he needs to monitor. It very well likely could be an issue of location, being to far away from the site to receive the control channel vs the wrong scanner.
 

maus92

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Seems like the OP should be monitoring the TOPAZ system, since the Gilbert services are hosted on it. Not sure why the focus is on RWC - particularly if the OP is too far away from a site to monitor it effectively (I don't know if this is the case however.) The next most logical system(s) would be the Maricopa County. Trying to monitor a system outside of its service area is not going to be an optimum experience.
 

Azgunguy

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Right now my 536 is picking up everything 10x better than my SDS100. But before I sent it in for repair and came back worse, it picked up everything. The SDS100 is a fantastic scanner and picks up all the local simulcasts great.
 
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