Scan Master programming Question

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bnoland

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Has anyone had them program a scanner? I am planning to buy a Uniden 996XT. While I could figure out the programming I wouldn't mind it coming already setup. If I choose one county (Shelby County, TN for me) do they program everything in this area? Shelby County, Memphis, Germantown, and Collierville PD and Fire? If program everything used by any department in Shelby county (since all of those areas are technically part of Shelby County) as 1 county then it would be well worth the $70 to be because there are probably 100+ frequencies between dispatch/Primary channels, car to car, TACT, training etc to be programmed in Shelby County alone if that is how it is done.
 

sfreiman

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I had them program a scanner a few years back, but lately have been programming several (Uniden) scanners myself using ProScan. ProScan is great software and makes programming and controlling Uniden scanners a snap. ProScan is only $50 for a lifetime license and you can program as many Uniden scanners as you like with it. The screenshot below shows ProScan controlling my two BCT15Xs. (The Shortwave Log software that controls my Icom IC-R75 is showing below the ProScan).
 

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ka3jjz

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There is another point that should be considered. What if you want to change something in the configuration that Scanner Master loaded for you, or you do something to mess it up? Without understanding how to program the scanner, it could become quite expensive to send it back and forth every time you want something fixed that you could do yourself.

While the amount of detail seems daunting, take it step by step and you'll learn it. We have numerous resources in our wiki to help you along...

Programming Your Uniden Scanner - The RadioReference Wiki

We have links to the Easier to Read manuals (there's both a downloadable and printed one available for the 996XT) and our DMA FAQ, which will answer many more questions that the manual doesn't. We have lots of other things in our wiki that will also be of use, if you're a newcomer - our online glossary and links to UPMan's excellent article introducing the concept of trunking, just to name 2.

There are 4 packages for the XT series - ProScan (which has already been mentioned), FreeScan (freeware) and ARC-XT. BCTool is another one. The first 3 allow you to download data from our database with a premium subscription - BCTool requires the paid professional version for this function.

That's only one way to go. You could go over to the Tennessee forum and ask for a file. Be sure to be specify what software you're using - formats are not interchangeable.

Take the time to learn about the 996XT. Education is often cheaper than the alternative...

best regards..Mike
 

bnoland

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There is another point that should be considered. What if you want to change something in the configuration that Scanner Master loaded for you, or you do something to mess it up? Without understanding how to program the scanner, it could become quite expensive to send it back and forth every time you want something fixed that you could do yourself.

While the amount of detail seems daunting, take it step by step and you'll learn it. We have numerous resources in our wiki to help you along...

Programming Your Uniden Scanner - The RadioReference Wiki

We have links to the Easier to Read manuals (there's both a downloadable and printed one available for the 996XT) and our DMA FAQ, which will answer many more questions that the manual doesn't. We have lots of other things in our wiki that will also be of use, if you're a newcomer - our online glossary and links to UPMan's excellent article introducing the concept of trunking, just to name 2.

There are 4 packages for the XT series - ProScan (which has already been mentioned), FreeScan (freeware) and ARC-XT. BCTool is another one. The first 3 allow you to download data from our database with a premium subscription - BCTool requires the paid professional version for this function.

That's only one way to go. You could go over to the Tennessee forum and ask for a file. Be sure to be specify what software you're using - formats are not interchangeable.

Take the time to learn about the 996XT. Education is often cheaper than the alternative...

best regards..Mike
I thought the same thing last night after posting this. I am going to just learn to program it. It shouldnt be hard and even if it is at first, once I learn it I will have no problems.
 

celsasser

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I had the same question a couple weeks ago, and decided to program everything myself. In hindsight it wasn't that bad, but it did take some time to study the software and scanner, to learn how to do it. Most of the software packages essentially work the same, so after you learn one you can use the others without much problem. You can get trial software or use FreeScan to do the programming. The WIKI link that ka3jjz provided will take you to just about everything you'll need.

My PC didn't have a serial port, so I ended up getting a USB-Serial adapter at Staples; I had a $25 coupon I needed to use. The adapter has worked with all of the previously mentioned software packages without any issue; I just loaded the drivers on the CD that came with the adapter for Win7, before plugging it in the 1st time.

I'm in position now to add, modify and delete systems/sites/groups as I want -- I've been doing that a lot to get things nailed down the way I want them. I also copy many of the files and load them on my new BCD15X.

I admit I was scratching my head a couple times last week, and ended up reviewing the forum archives for more info. (I had the most difficulty programing the IL StarCom21 system [trunked system]; conventional programming was fairly straightforward.) I was about to ask for help on the forum once too, but I found what I needed in the archives. The point is, that most questions have probably already been asked before on the forum.
 

RoninJoliet

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"celsasser", are u using the "adapter" on the cable that comes with the Uniden15X, my Compaq Windows7 only has USB, can i adapt this cable to my Compaq PC on the cable to program and download new firmware to my 396XT and 996XT instead of purchasing the USB1 cable from ScannerMaster...IF so what is the # of the adapter you purchased ??..I also monitor Starcom in my area and my city is joining SCom in May....TY...
 

celsasser

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RoninJoilet,

The serial side of the Staples adapter plugs into the serial side of the cable you get with the 996XT scanner. The other side of the Staples adapter has the USB connector on it and plugs into the computer. [Unlike the Uniden USB-1 adapter, you need to use the cable that comes with the scanner] I don't see why it wouldn't work for updating the firmware, but admit I haven't done that (yet).

It is a Staples USB-to-Serial Port Adapter; #18762. It was on sale Friday for ~$23 at a local Staples store. When the adapter is plugged into the cable that comes with the 996XT, you end up with about 3-1/2' total length. That's long enough so the radio can sit on my table and connect into the USB port on the back of my computer sitting on the floor.

I'm still working on fully understanding the in's-and-outs of StarCom21....
 

RoninJoliet

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Thank You, you answered my question very well...If you have any questions on Starcom let me know....I programmed in my local towers in the CGO area and the
CC's and TG's and it works fine usually....I made a seperate "SQKey for each tower, you can go to Home Page or this web site, print the towers in your area and load them.....
 

celsasser

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RoninJoliet,
Thanks for the tip about the tower numbers and sq key. I've been heading that way without knowing it.
 

RoninJoliet

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Going out to Staples today, check out the adapter cable...Been in scanning over forty years and have never installed "drivers" before and have limited knowledge of the computer...Do have Win96 cable installed with software and cable for my RS2096 done by a friend...Wonder if it will interfere with this other one or choose a different comport.....All programming done by hand on seven scanners four digital....
 

celsasser

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this should work too for the Staples adapter

RoninJoilet,
If you end up with the Staples adapter, here's what you'll need to do to install the driver/use it:
1: Put the CD that comes with it into the drive and open up file manager. Fo to the CD/DVD drive in your computer that has the CD in it.
2. Double click on the Staples Serial to USB Adapter .exe install file. It will start a wizard that will install the software.
3. At the end of the wizard, choose "Yes, I want to restart my computer now" and click "finish".
4 The computer will restart.
5. Plug in the Staples Serial to USB Adapter, when you do Windows will tell you it found the adapter and is loading the driver for you. The adapter will be ready to use after the driver is loaded.

NOTE: When I did this Windows even told me what com port the adapter was configured for; so watch for this, since you might need it when you run the FreeScan/XT ARC/etc. software later. You will probably need to tell the software what comport is being used -- unless the software has auto detection built into it (some of mine had auto detect and others didn't).

Hope that helps.
 

cacherjoe

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I had them program the original HP1 I got. With those units basically they create a favorites list for your area. When it comes to the other units like you mention it might be more worth it. That said, most of the software out there will upload the frequencies to the unit. Think of getting a premium membership to this site. If you do all you have to do it download the frequencies you want to the program of your choice and upload to the unit. In all honesty, things change so you will likely want to do that from time to time anyway, but having it come all set up is great.

J
 

bnoland

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I got a reply from scan master about the programming. They said it would include everything in my county but I have decided to take ya'lls advise and do it myself. In the long run it will be better. Then I can program the areas for when I travel out of town to visit family I can program the areas I will go through and the areas I will pass through on the way there.
 
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