SDS200 vs TRX2

racefan0020

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Hi, I live in York County, just to the NW of the City of York. I am currently running a TRX-2. I am thinking about purchasing a SDS200 with my Tax refund. Before I do, I would like some feedback. With the TRX-2, I am getting all 4 simulcasts of York County, although York Central, West and North can be choppy at times. York South is always clear. PASTARNet is always good. Adams, Lancaster, Baltimore and Carroll County are intermittent and sometimes I lose the audio. Dauphin, Franklin and Frederick Counties along with Delaware State only come through when atmospheric conditions are right. Lebanon County, being EDACS, gives me a great signal but no audio. I could never understand that because with my Pro 197, I have no issues with Lebanon. I live on a hill about 500 ft up and have a discone antenna up 30 ft. If there is anyone in the area, or anyone at all with a similar setup, that has switched to the SDS200 just what differences (better or worse) I could expect. Thanks for any help.
 

trentbob

W3BUX- Bucks County, PA
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I think you've answered your own question. How do you feel about choppy reception and possibly not even knowing it but missing complete transmissions all together?

I've often heard people defending non simulcast radios by saying I get 85% reception and that's good enough for me. I could never understand that but I guess that's because I'm a retired newspaper man and I didn't want to lose that 15%, it could be important LOL.

The sds200 is a much newer radio and and has an SDR chip and is simulcast capable. It has a great display and lots of good features. There really is no comparison between the two radios, it's kind of cut and dry. As far as free upgrades with the Whistler and paying for them with the Uniden... the Uniden upgrades work better.

We can give you opinions but it's your opinion on whether or not you want to spend the money. LOL.
 

Ubbe

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I could never understand that because with my Pro 197, I have no issues with Lebanon.
TRX scanners are notorious for being tricky to get them to work on simulcast systems compared to other scanners. The SDS200 are a much better scanner in almost every aspect but are also much more expensive. But in simulcast areas you do not have many other options to choose from, if you don't stay at home and experiment with antennas and attenuators. But if you always monitor from home you can always use a $20 SDR dongle that will handle simulcast, several dongles if needed, and run any of the PC programs to monitor simulcast systems and use the TRX for all other non-simulcast systems.

/Ubbe
 

jtwalker

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I am in NW Adams County, just about where Adams, Franklin and Cumberland meet. I have a Uniden BCD536HP and I raised up my outside antenna, which caused it to go deaf on SCIN for Adams. I was probably missing some transmissions before and didn’t realize it. I now have an SDS200 and use it to monitor SCIN for Adams and Franklin, (along with York when I decide I want to hear it) and it works exceptionally well. I still have the 536 and use it for Carroll, Washington and Baltimore Counties in MD. I can’t directly compare to a TRX2, but I don’t think you’ll regret an SDS200.
 

PCPA

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I don't know about the SDS200 but its portable clone the SDS100 works beautifully on York County PROVIDED that you purchase a Remtronix antenna because the one in the box is a worthless POS.

With that antenna I can receive York County perfectly whether indoors or in the car, and I verified that by having a government issued portable beside it in both environments. No external vehicle antenna needed.

From some higher elevations in southern York County I can receive Baltimore and Carroll perfectly well in car.
 

racefan0020

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Thanx for the replies so far. I am just about sold on the SDS 200. I do have another question. Is there any way to enter my data from the TRX-2 to an SDS 200? With the systems I scan regularly, York, Adams, Lancaster, PASTARNet, Baltimore and Carroll, I have well over 9000 Radio ID's. I would hate to have to start that all over again. To Jtwalker, I am thinking about raising my antenna another 5 or 10 ft. but thinking I may wait until I see what a SDS 200 will do, if I get one.
 

jtwalker

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If you can get the data from TRX2 into a spreadsheet you should be able to paste it into the software you use for SDS200. Not sure if you can paste all at once, but almost sure I’ve pasted more than what fits on the screen at one time.
 

maus92

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Thanx for the replies so far. I am just about sold on the SDS 200. I do have another question. Is there any way to enter my data from the TRX-2 to an SDS 200? With the systems I scan regularly, York, Adams, Lancaster, PASTARNet, Baltimore and Carroll, I have well over 9000 Radio ID's. I would hate to have to start that all over again. To Jtwalker, I am thinking about raising my antenna another 5 or 10 ft. but thinking I may wait until I see what a SDS 200 will do, if I get one.
Raising your antenna may be counterproductive. Your issue is likely that you are receiving signals from multiple towers on the sites you are experiencing poor reception. Raising the antenna will probably make things worse. First start with a radio designed to receive simulcast signaling.
 

KC3ECJ

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I don't know about the SDS200 but its portable clone the SDS100 works beautifully on York County PROVIDED that you purchase a Remtronix antenna because the one in the box is a worthless POS.

With that antenna I can receive York County perfectly whether indoors or in the car, and I verified that by having a government issued portable beside it in both environments. No external vehicle antenna needed.

From some higher elevations in southern York County I can receive Baltimore and Carroll perfectly well in car.
I use an antenna from an old Realistic Pro-38 with the SDS100 and have had overall good results.
 

racefan0020

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Raising your antenna may be counterproductive. Your issue is likely that you are receiving signals from multiple towers on the sites you are experiencing poor reception. Raising the antenna will probably make things worse. First start with a radio designed to receive simulcast signaling.
That is why I will Probably wait to see if I get the SDS 200 and see if reception and distance improves. I am an old school scanner person, where more height meant better reception and longer distance. Even though I am on my 3rd generation of digital scanner (Pro 443, Pro 197, TRX-2), I am still learning that is not so with digital.
 

maus92

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It’s the combination of digital and simulcast that makes the older radios obsolete. A single tower digital system is usually fairly easy to get working, but simulcast is a different animal.
 

trentbob

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Well after much debate with myself, I purchased an sds200. It should be in today. So we will see if I made the right choice, I hope so.
Because it's a steep learning curve give it a little bit of time before you draw any conclusions. Several adjustments that can help you with reception might make all the difference. Definitely going to help with simulcast, you will notice the difference.
 

racefan0020

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Well, after 1 day, I am well pleased. Still trying to get everything in order. figured out how to import all my radio Id's, and that went good. Getting Franklin County, Chester County and still experimenting with other systems. Adams and Dauphin counties are still a problem. Baltimore and Caroll are very clear. Funny thing is that having the SDS200 hooked up on the same antenna as the TRX-2 has enhanced the performance of the TRX-2. Don't have any idea why, but it has. So far very happy.
 

maus92

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Well, after 1 day, I am well pleased. Still trying to get everything in order. figured out how to import all my radio Id's, and that went good. Getting Franklin County, Chester County and still experimenting with other systems. Adams and Dauphin counties are still a problem. Baltimore and Caroll are very clear. Funny thing is that having the SDS200 hooked up on the same antenna as the TRX-2 has enhanced the performance of the TRX-2. Don't have any idea why, but it has. So far very happy.
Having 2 radios on the same antenna system (without an amplified splitter) will attenuate the signal somewhat, which can be helpful when trying to monitor a simulcast system with a non-simulcast optimized radio.
 

jtwalker

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Adams, Franklin and Dauphin are all on same system but you would need the sites from the various counties to hear that county. Adams has two sites (east and west), and I think Franklin Has two. Dauphin has a half dozen or so. so you’ll need multiple sites (at least three) from SCIN to get all three counties. I believe LE is encrypted in all three counties.
 
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racefan0020

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Ok, am well pleased so far with the clarity of the audio. Got Proscan to help with programming, very helpful. I have so far entered 5 favorite lists. One area I am having difficulty with is, even though all 5 lists enabled, the only one that scans is list number 1. No matter what I try, I can't get any of the others to scan. All 5 show on the display as enabled, all service types are checked and everything else the manuals say. Anyone have any ideas?
 

maus92

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Ok, am well pleased so far with the clarity of the audio. Got Proscan to help with programming, very helpful. I have so far entered 5 favorite lists. One area I am having difficulty with is, even though all 5 lists enabled, the only one that scans is list number 1. No matter what I try, I can't get any of the others to scan. All 5 show on the display as enabled, all service types are checked and everything else the manuals say. Anyone have any ideas?
Each Favorites List needs to be enabled in order to be actively scanned / monitored - there should be a check box.
 
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racefan0020

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As far as I know, they are all enabled. All 5 numbers show up at the top of the screen. When I use the quick key, the number goes away until I hit the quick key again.
 
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