Scanner Choice HELP!!!!

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allenprice

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I am in LA and need a scanner that can pick-up on p45? What is the easiest scanner, best quality and value between the Uniden BCD396T & the GRE PSR-500? Please keep in mind that I am new to scanning, therefore, I really need solid advise and info on the EASIEST most USER FRIENDLY version. I bought a scanner from Radio Shack last summer, and it took me 6 different Radio Shacks to find someone to "Program" the scanner from the internet! After that, I still don't understand the basics, and the manual simply confused me! I returned the scanner within 14 days and I think it was a Radio Shack PRO-96. I've been told that my friends Radio Shack #PRO 598 wich I have been playing with, won't do what I want it to! I've also been told that the LAPD runs P25 Digital on their primary and secondary channels. Unfortunately, The 528 does not decode P25.
I want a Scanner that can tune into LAPD Air, dispatch, Cruisers with the conversation heard easily instead of one side then scanning for the answer! I also need, CHP, LASD, Marine, Military??, and local broadcasts.
If anyone can take some time to help me I would really appreciate it.
Thanks,
Allen
PS-I know this will sound crazy, but is it possible to somehow plug a scanner into the MP3 Port in my car so I could hear it over the car speaker system??
priceinvestigations@mac.com
 

hawkeye32

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well as far as i know not too sure about this, but for the LA area i think they are encrypted as to where no scanner can pick up the police, i may be wrong but thought i seen that somewhere on here, best to try the california forum that is listed further down from the location of this thread...As for a good user friendly scanner and for a good price i personally find the pro-2096 a good scanner, user firendly and the WIN96 to me is easy to run and program your scanner, I personally don't tun the software as of yet but will be very soon...the BC396t is also a good scanner along with the PSR's but are more expensive,if money is not a concern for you then go with one of those, i was going to get a 396t but browsed the forums here to see how much trouble folks have with it...I seen quite a few posts about people having problems it so never bothered...Came across the 2096 for a great price and got it, I monitor the detroit/windsor which detroit uses the P-25 system and it works fine,no problms as of yet
 

hawkeye32

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as for the mp3 if you can find the right connectors that plug into the scanner then into ur deck for ur car should be able to listen with no problems
 

scannerfreak

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Please do not post in multiple forums with the same topic. I have deleted the others..Thanks..
 

af5rn

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Please keep in mind that I am new to scanning, therefore, I really need solid advise and info on the EASIEST most USER FRIENDLY version. I bought a scanner from Radio Shack last summer, and it took me 6 different Radio Shacks to find someone to "Program" the scanner from the internet! After that, I still don't understand the basics, and the manual simply confused me! I returned the scanner within 14 days and I think it was a Radio Shack PRO-96.
You're going to have to bite the bullet on this quest, because there is no such thing as what you are asking for. There is no digital capable scanner currently made that is even remotely close to "easy" or "user friendly". Sorry, but the technology has simply outgrown the casual listener. Someone made a good analogy the other day to flying. You can't just buy a plane and go figure it out on your own without a seriously high learning curve and failure rate. The 1970s are over. Welcome to the 21st century, where the computer rules, and you can't just punch a few buttons and hear the world anymore.

Now that we have established that there is no "easy" option for you, you can either give up, or you can focus on getting serious about it and choosing the least complicated option to get the job done. I would recommend the Uniden BCD396T. While it's audio quality on P25 (not P45) is not quite as good as the PSR, it is quieter in urban environments than the competition. And it is supported by several really good programming software options, with some excellent ones being absolutely free for download. I recommend http://www.scannow.org for the FreeSCAN program. It allows you to cut and paste system info directly from the database at this site to your radio, saving a LOT of time. The software that comes with Uniden radios is a total waste of time, but especially for a n00b.

That's right, you are going to have to either buy or download special computer software in order to simply program your radio to listen to a single agency. And the really bad news is that none of them work with a Mac, and you will have to probably buy a special cable just to use any PC you have access to. After all that, it will take you days and days and days to figure it out. And no amount of coming here and screaming for our help will get you there any faster, because you just have to put the time in and figure it out yourself in order to get it.

Sorry. I know this isn't what you wanted to hear, but just like there probably is no quick and easy shortcut to becoming a PI, neither is there a quick and easy shortcut to scanning complicated urban systems these days, unless you can find a local scannist willing to do it all for you. But that's not a particularly good option either, because then you are left without the slightest idea of how to change anything, and you'll end up never hearing what you really want to hear.

As has already been mentioned, yes, you can route your scanner audio through the car stereo, although there aren't any serious benefits to doing so. Unless you're in a really high-noise environment, the internal speaker is just fine for mobile use. I never really need more volume out of mine while in the car, unless it's storming cats and dogs outside while a train goes by.

Good luck!
 
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Clark

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Sep 2, 2002
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Venice, Calif
I am in LA and need a scanner that can pick-up on p45? What is the easiest scanner, best quality and value between the Uniden BCD396T & the GRE PSR-500? Please keep in mind that I am new to scanning, therefore, I really need solid advise and info on the EASIEST most USER FRIENDLY version. I bought a scanner from Radio Shack last summer, and it took me 6 different Radio Shacks to find someone to "Program" the scanner from the internet! After that, I still don't understand the basics, and the manual simply confused me! I returned the scanner within 14 days and I think it was a Radio Shack PRO-96. I've been told that my friends Radio Shack #PRO 598 wich I have been playing with, won't do what I want it to! I've also been told that the LAPD runs P25 Digital on their primary and secondary channels. Unfortunately, The 528 does not decode P25.
I want a Scanner that can tune into LAPD Air, dispatch, Cruisers with the conversation heard easily instead of one side then scanning for the answer! I also need, CHP, LASD, Marine, Military??, and local broadcasts.
If anyone can take some time to help me I would really appreciate it.
Thanks,
Allen
PS-I know this will sound crazy, but is it possible to somehow plug a scanner into the MP3 Port in my car so I could hear it over the car speaker system??
priceinvestigations@mac.com
I have a BCD396 which would be my choice, but, if you were unable to program and use a PRO-96 which is far easier to use. Don't even think about the
BCD396 or a PSR-500

Clark
 

allenprice

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Jul 3, 2008
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I have a BCD396 which would be my choice, but, if you were unable to program and use a PRO-96 which is far easier to use. Don't even think about the
BCD396 or a PSR-500

Clark
I do not have a Pro 96, I said that I was told that a Pro 96 was one of three scanners that would work for monitoring LAPD!
 

af5rn

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I do not have a Pro 96, I said that I was told that a Pro 96 was one of three scanners that would work for monitoring LAPD!
Yeah, it will. Not really a bad scanner, best I can tell. But again, there are more readily available and FREE programming options for the 396, making massive programming (necessary for LA) a little easier, and urban performance is lesser in the Pro 96.
 

SCPD

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I would not discount the PRO-96 for listening to the LAPD. Many people have posted in other threads and forums that the PRO-96 has better audio quality on digital reception. Don Starr of Starr Soft software has an excellent product for programming the PRO-96. I've used it and my PRO-96 to monitor LAPD traffic. The software Don has written for the PSR-500 has a feature where Radio Reference database information can read directly into the file you are writing for the radio. This is a great shortcut. The PRO-96 is relatively simple to use and because the LAPD is not using a trunked system you are not trying to monitor something that is complex. In fact, L.A. County probably uses the least trunking of any major metro area, with the exception of the ICIS that is used mainly in the Pasadena/Glendale/Burbank areas. Look for more agencies to join this system in the future.

You can also start threads in the various geographical forums here on Radio Reference to see if anyone has a file written for a particular area or agency. Many people happily share the files they have written. This greatly reduces the complexity and time needed to program whatever radio you choose.

I would suggest you visit the Radio Reference Wiki section. There are a lot of topics there that would explain many of the questions you probably have regarding the world of radio and scanners. You can also post noobie type questions in the general scanning forum. Most of us here are very glad to help someone new to the hobby and would like to help you. Some of us are even willing to PM you or exchange phone numbers so we can talk you through programming and using a radio. As previously mentioned here, the radio hobby is not quite as simple as it used to be, except out in many rural areas like the one I happen to live in. But don't let the intitial shock of how much knowledge you need to get started keep you from enjoying the hobby as we would like to help you.
 

Eng74

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The Pro-96, 396, or the 500 will all work in the LA area. The only encryption is the Orange County law enforcement. Like the others have posted there are no real easy scanners to program without a program. Since you made it to Radio Reference you should be able to program any of the three scanners. Threre are free programs and there are ones to pay for, it is just part of the beast of scanning now and it helps out so much. Even for people who know how to program we are never done with programing them. I know I am always tweeking mine on where a channel is or which bank, quick key, or scan list is used or something. Just remeber to save a base copy of what you have before you start tweeking.
 
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