recommidation on digital scanner

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nick223

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Looking to get a digital scanner ISP is only digital around here but i do travel alot to places that use digital. I been reading about Undiens mobiles and how they have alot of troubles right now in tuning them? Im down for whatever will pick up the best mobiles or portables and if a mobile the best vehicle antenna? Any name brand im all Ears. Thanks
 

RoninJoliet

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ILL
I monitor Starcom here in ILL, the only tower i have trouble with on my 396XT is T101-Dupage Co because its been changed to 6 sites as the county is going to Starcom...I receive all other sites great on my 396XT, 2-RS197's and 996XT...It all depends on where you live and how close or far from the towers in the Chicago area and other parts of IL....Some systems on P25 in the country do not respond to some make and models of these digital scanners as DDan has written and he is correct....
 

nick223

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Was looking at scanner master. Is it worth having them program it? For a first time digital scanner user?
 

hiegtx

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Was looking at scanner master. Is it worth having them program it? For a first time digital scanner user?
In my opinion, no.

You're going to pay about $70 for them to program one county (more for additional counties), and all that will be programmed is what the database shows for that county. Plus, that programming is a one-shot deal. It's only as accurate as what was in the database the day they loaded the scanner. On any given day, click on the database link. See how many states show some sort of change has been made. At some point, depending on your area, & what interests you, something in your area will need to be updated. You should learn to do that yourself; paying somebody else each time would be pointless, not to mention expensive.

You're already a premium subscriber. So, you can download any and all systems you want into software. Yes, it's a learning curve, but there are a number of people here that can help walk you through, and once you get the hang of it, you're off & running. For the cost of paying a dealer (ScannerMaster or any other) to program your new radio, instead purchase the software to program it yourself. If you're getting one of the Radio Shack shack scanners (Pro-106 or Pro-197), you'll also need the pc cable, about $34 (but they have been selling those 50% off if purchased with the scanner in the past; see if this is still true). The GRE versions PSR-500 & PSR-600 (same radio; GRE makes the 106 & 197 for Radio Shack, only differences are included accessories & cosmetic) come with the cable. Software runs $35 (for PSREdit500 or Win500) or $39.95 for ARC500 Basic. All three programs have a 30 day free trial period. More in the Wiki.

If you're leaning toward one of the Uniden scanners, it's even simpler. The scanner will come with the pc cable, and there is one excellent software package available that is freeware. FreeScan can be found here, and also does imports from the Radio Reference database. Also available are ProScan and ARC-XT.

You might also be able to connect with someone in your area through your state forum, and get a programming file for whatever scanner you end up purchasing. That will not only give you a jump-start, but also a template to compare how a system should look after you import it into software.
 

nick223

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In my opinion, no.

You're going to pay about $70 for them to program one county (more for additional counties), and all that will be programmed is what the database shows for that county. Plus, that programming is a one-shot deal. It's only as accurate as what was in the database the day they loaded the scanner. On any given day, click on the database link. See how many states show some sort of change has been made. At some point, depending on your area, & what interests you, something in your area will need to be updated. You should learn to do that yourself; paying somebody else each time would be pointless, not to mention expensive.

You're already a premium subscriber. So, you can download any and all systems you want into software. Yes, it's a learning curve, but there are a number of people here that can help walk you through, and once you get the hang of it, you're off & running. For the cost of paying a dealer (ScannerMaster or any other) to program your new radio, instead purchase the software to program it yourself. If you're getting one of the Radio Shack shack scanners (Pro-106 or Pro-197), you'll also need the pc cable, about $34 (but they have been selling those 50% off if purchased with the scanner in the past; see if this is still true). The GRE versions PSR-500 & PSR-600 (same radio; GRE makes the 106 & 197 for Radio Shack, only differences are included accessories & cosmetic) come with the cable. Software runs $35 (for PSREdit500 or Win500) or $39.95 for ARC500 Basic. All three programs have a 30 day free trial period. More in the Wiki.

If you're leaning toward one of the Uniden scanners, it's even simpler. The scanner will come with the pc cable, and there is one excellent software package available that is freeware. FreeScan can be found here, and also does imports from the Radio Reference database. Also available are ProScan and ARC-XT.

You might also be able to connect with someone in your area through your state forum, and get a programming file for whatever scanner you end up purchasing. That will not only give you a jump-start, but also a template to compare how a system should look after you import it into software.
Thank you very much for taking the time to write all that. I learn something new every day here.
 

svtyone

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Oct 31, 2010
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el cajon
programming it yourself is the best way. i find myself wanting to scan in other parts than my county constantly and to pay 70 dollars every time would kill my bank. im sure you will find your self wanting to venture into other counties. also if something were to reset to default or something you wouldnt even know where to begin. i programmed my pro-96 all by hand on a moto/p25 system here. with four banks all running different agencies and each talkgroup text labeled.now i have 9/10 banks full. four south one north,one east,one northeast san diego. all by hand. allthough i have used the pc software and once you get it to communicate with your pc it is extremly easy to program but i didnt see it a necesity worth 35.00 amonth but that for win96 software for the pro-96 radio shack. i dont know if it does starcom but is a great scanner and avail around 250 allday on ebay.
 
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