Scanner used as two way radio on TV

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hill

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Tonight on 911 Lone Star they used a WS1065 scanner for a base radio. Had some kind of generic mic next to it. The scanner had a two meter frequency on the display of something like 144.000, but was shown kind of quick.
 

belvdr

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Cheap props are everywhere on visual media.
 

ElroyJetson

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DO NOT ASK ME FOR HELP PROGRAMMING YOUR RADIO. NO.
In the 1986 movie "The Manhattan Project", there are scenes where SWAT team members, fully geared up, have Motorola MX300R radios stuck to their ears like telephones. A truly fine way to blow a hole through an eardrum.

In the 80s movie "BMX Bandits", filmed in Australia, and which was Nicole Kidman's movie debut, some teens are stealing radios from the basement storage of the local police department and using them. How exactly you can make an MX300 radio with no battery on the bottom actually work for communications is something only a movie director can figure out.

Don't nitpick the movies with regard to technical issues. You'll go insane.
 

n1das

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In one episode of Emergency! back in the 70s, I saw a Regency crystal scanner being used as a programmable 2-way base radio. The frequency was "programmed" by pressing several of the channel lockout buttons. LOL.

I recall RadioShack briefly sold a programmable scanner that was post-SBE Opti-Scan and pre-Bearcat210 and pre-Regency Touch K100/K500. It resembled a crystal scanner with channel indicator lights and lockout buttons. To program a channel, you manually selected the channel to be programmed, put it in program mode, and then used the channel lockout switches to program the binary coded decimal (BCD) digit for each digit of the frequency. It was a step up from the optically programmable scanners like the SBE Opti-Scan but predates fully keypad programmable scanners. I never owned one but suspect it was a PITA to program.
 

Remington12G

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I was watching Designated Survivor on Netflix, had BaoFengs like Sat Phones up to there ears. Also saw a few using some Motorola XTS models like phones in a few movies and shows, like mentioned, props. I will say that BBC show Bodyguard had Tetra radios that were actually programmed and working for their show.
 

GlobalNorth

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If it had the realism of a training film, you'd have to pay people to watch it and they'd still complain.

Put a cardboard box with a rubber duck antenna taped to it and speak into it, they'll call it TV entertainment.
 

DJ11DLN

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Old news. I've seen scanners, cheap kiddie walkie-talkies, Ham equipment, CB radios, and other stuff used as Public Safety comms in shows and movies so many times over the years that I've long since lost count. I do appreciate the rare ones that use actual LMR gear, even when they obviously didn't give the actors the faintest inkling of how it's actually supposed to be used. It's mostly become invisible to me; as someone else said, if you nit-pick entertainment media about stuff you have personal knowledge of, you'll drive yourself up the wall and around the bend.
 

zzdiesel

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In The Heat of the Night; the Chief used CB Radios for Police base radios on his desk & beside of his bed at home. A few times he didn't "key" the mic while talking.
 

garys

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Perhaps the worst of them all was the original "Die Hard." CB radio directly to police handheld as I recall.
 

belvdr

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It was probably "mega peaked and tuned"
With a linear.

I recall the movie Swordfish, where someone used a bunch of ethernet cables to connect a stack of network gear. I analyzed that too much and it ruined the movie. Well, there were lots of scenes in that movie that ruined it, but that was the icing on the cake.
 

n1das

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I figure the least they could do is put the squelch tail noise burst sound at the END of a received transmission instead of at the beginning. They've been doing it this way for decades. LOL.
 

bharvey2

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With a linear.

I recall the movie Swordfish, where someone used a bunch of ethernet cables to connect a stack of network gear. I analyzed that too much and it ruined the movie. Well, there were lots of scenes in that movie that ruined it, but that was the icing on the cake.

My wife often gets on my case when we watch movies together when I call B.S. on technical aspects. You're right. Something things are so blatant that it kills the movie for me.
 

wa8pyr

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Perhaps the worst of them all was the original "Die Hard." CB radio directly to police handheld as I recall.
Actually those radios (the ones the terrorists brought with them, one of which McClain nabbed) were, if I recall correctly, Kenwood portables. If they're UHF it's possible they could talk to LAPD, but the odds of the terrorists just happening to use the same frequency/PL combination are pretty high. And how is it the terrorists were yakking back and forth for around an hour before McClain called from the roof and all of a sudden the PD can hear them? What really killed me there was the limo driver being able to listen in, too.

The thing that really drives me nuts in that film (having been a fire/EMS/police dispatcher for 22 years) is that dispatcher immediately assuming McClain is making a prank call and says she'll have to report the FCC violation. . . then grudgingly sends "a unit" to check it out after they blow McClain off. Not going to happen in the real world; they'll respond professionally and have someone check it out, but the total blow-off won't happen, especially when the person on the other end of the radio is obviously worked up. Paying attention to the caller's demeanor is high on the list of ways to help determine the legitimacy of a call.

Like others have said, we could drive ourselves batty pointing out technical errors in Hollywood productions. My personal bugaboo is continuity errors (the phone is in the right hand, suddenly and magically it's in the left hand, stuff like that).
 
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