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SDS200 The best airband scanner!

Joined
Aug 22, 2014
Messages
396
Location
municipality of great state of insanity
#21
i have noticed over the years the real deal milair freaks (which i have put in my application with) seem to have anywhere from 1-100 BC780XLT's running full blast. is there anyone who can explain the secret sauce in that particular model or is i just a quirk of design that word got out about?

i have a hole in my soul and i need to know .....

BC780XLT- can it fill it???
 

iMONITOR

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Sep 20, 2006
Messages
6,478
Location
MACOMB, MI.
#22
i have noticed over the years the real deal milair freaks (which i have put in my application with) seem to have anywhere from 1-100 BC780XLT's running full blast. is there anyone who can explain the secret sauce in that particular model or is i just a quirk of design that word got out about?

i have a hole in my soul and i need to know .....

BC780XLT- can it fill it???
I'm going to take some heat for saying this but I think the 780XLT was a legend in it's day, but that was then this is now. The design, components and build quality is dated and I belived some of the newer scanners today are a better choice. Maybe not just in performance but features and function. As an example the BCT15X has a much better display, advanced circuit board technology with better more reliable soldering, more memory, more software choices, and it can be purchased brand new for about only $40 more than some used 780XLT's. Not to mention the volume and squelch control knobs don't crumble if you look at them sideways.

BC780-XLT BCT15X
Number of channels 500 2500
Number of banks 10/50 channels ea Number of groups 20 per system
 

werinshades

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Jan 21, 2002
Messages
2,657
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Chicago , IL
#24
I'm really encouraged by all the positive feedback on the SDS series and air bands! Initially all I was reading was negative feedback in that regard but some time has passed and it seems to be doing much better! Firmware maybe? Learning how to use filters? More appropriate antennas? Maybe a combination of things? I might even have to buy one soon! :cool:
For me...definitely the filters have improved the SDS scanners receiving capabilities. While not perfect, it has taken it's place amongst it's brothers and sister Uniden's. I still haven't forgotten the copper tape on the battery compartment on my 436 to receive the 460mhz band. Good news is, I still have plenty of it left and the 436 has been sold a long time ago...:cool:
 
Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
307
Location
ON CAN/Hope AR USA
#25
I'm really encouraged by all the positive feedback on the SDS series and air bands! Initially all I was reading was negative feedback in that regard but some time has passed and it seems to be doing much better! Firmware maybe? Learning how to use filters? More appropriate antennas? Maybe a combination of things? I might even have to buy one soon! :cool:
I've found that the invert filter really opens up air band (I have the SDS100 not 200...yet). I use a Diamond RH789 telescopic antenna when I'm not home. It is truly a fantastic antenna. When I'm home I have a mag mount dual band antenna mounted on a large metal box by a window in my bedroom.. Works amazing!! I just bought (and am awaiting delivery of) a Slim Jim dual band N9TAX antenna. I also purchased an FM filter (RTL-SDR with SMA fittings) that gets great reviews! Apparently said filter makes a huge difference in the air band and the rest fo the VHF band. For $16 I'll give it a try.

I think to your questions firmware made a huge difference. I didn't pull the pin and buy one until last week. Too many negative reports at first. As the firmware upgrades were released they reports seemed to be getting better. Once the filters were added there was quite an upswing in positive reception reports. I love both my 436 and 536 but I'm really enjoying the SDS100. My wife is happy I bought it because she now has the 436 at our place in Lewiston NY. She forgot her TRX-1 at our place in Arkansas in April. LOL!
Mike
 

danesgs

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May 21, 2008
Messages
114
#26
actually I have found a RS PRO-2096 does air comms well. As does a VX-1R. its the receiver folks not the brand name.
 
Joined
Aug 22, 2014
Messages
396
Location
municipality of great state of insanity
#27
I'm going to take some heat for saying this but I think the 780XLT was a legend in it's day, but that was then this is now. The design, components and build quality is dated and I belived some of the newer scanners today are a better choice. Maybe not just in performance but features and function. As an example the BCT15X has a much better display, advanced circuit board technology with better more reliable soldering, more memory, more software choices, and it can be purchased brand new for about only $40 more than some used 780XLT's. Not to mention the volume and squelch control knobs don't crumble if you look at them sideways.

BC780-XLT BCT15X
Number of channels 500 2500
Number of banks 10/50 channels ea Number of groups 20 per system
i appreciate the candid reply. i somewhat recently purchased a 15x though havent really been able to do any testing of it vs other scanners. it seems to have a handfull of reception pluses in the lowband area but thats all i have concluded so far. i would have already gotten a 780xlt but scanners and cameras are two things i am gun shy about buying used without being able to touch it at the time of purchase. the hassle of sending back "guaranteed to work" items that won't cut on upon receipt, has gotten me to that point. where i live walk-in places that -might- have scanners are few and far between and you have likely saved me a lot of time and effort.

thanks again :)
 
Joined
Sep 8, 2006
Messages
3,041
Location
Stockholm, Sweden
#28
Pay using Paypal and they cover the cost of the return shipping and you dispute the purchase and get your money back. It's never failed for me and seems idiot proof to always use Paypal.

/Ubbe
 

KR7CQ

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Joined
May 20, 2013
Messages
972
Location
Phoenix
#29
I love my BCT15X's, but they can't match my BC780XLTs on the air bands, head to head on a multicoupler. I've tested and verified this time and time again. Yes the BC780XLT knobs are garbage (I allow the knobs to completely fall apart then use epoxy that I have dyed black to bond the parts back together). Yes the feet fall off. Yeah you don't have that many channels, and have no nuisance avoid. There are other negatives too. It's an old design. But...as was mentioned above, many if not most serious milair guys have multiple BC780XLTs, sometimes racks of them. That pretty much speaks for itself.
 
Joined
May 6, 2019
Messages
75
Location
Niles, IL
#32
The sds200 is the best airband scanner ive ever had it all comes in so crisp and clear, my previous scanners have always had so much static and never heard much but this thing is nice.
Many years ago my dad had a Sony airband scanner he bought at Sporty Pilots' Shop that he was very enthusiastic about--don't know if it's still being made, though.
 
Joined
Mar 31, 2006
Messages
1,679
Location
coastal/eastern Monmouth NJ
#33
I'm going to take some heat for saying this but I think the 780XLT was a legend in it's day, but that was then this is now. The design, components and build quality is dated and I belived some of the newer scanners today are a better choice. Maybe not just in performance but features and function. As an example the BCT15X has a much better display, advanced circuit board technology with better more reliable soldering, more memory, more software choices, and it can be purchased brand new for about only $40 more than some used 780XLT's. Not to mention the volume and squelch control knobs don't crumble if you look at them sideways.

BC780-XLT BCT15X
Number of channels 500 2500
Number of banks 10/50 channels ea Number of groups 20 per system
Back in the day, I liked mine so much, that I bought a second one. I sometime's wish that I had almost every scanner that I ever owned. But moving kind of squashes that urge ! .
 
Last edited:

thom

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Joined
May 26, 2003
Messages
189
Location
Connecticut shore
#34
I've been testing my new SDS 200 for a week and my 536 is consistently better in the 453 mhz range. Both radios are on the same DPD Omnix antenna on my roof. The 536 picks up towns in that range 18 & 20 miles away where the 200 doesn't even break the squelch. There a lot of hills & tall trees in my area but that doesn't seem to bother the 536. I've been trying out different filter settings on the 200 to no avail. I also have the latest firmware.
 
Joined
Mar 6, 2005
Messages
581
Location
SE Michigan
#35
I love my BCT15X's, but they can't match my BC780XLTs on the air bands, head to head on a multicoupler. I've tested and verified this time and time again. Yes the BC780XLT knobs are garbage (I allow the knobs to completely fall apart then use epoxy that I have dyed black to bond the parts back together). Yes the feet fall off. Yeah you don't have that many channels, and have no nuisance avoid. There are other negatives too. It's an old design. But...as was mentioned above, many if not most serious milair guys have multiple BC780XLTs, sometimes racks of them. That pretty much speaks for itself.

Never had a problem with knobs or feet on my BC780XLT. Mine still is purring along. Just lucky I guess. It was a great scanner in its day.

Jim
 

werinshades

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Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Messages
2,657
Location
Chicago , IL
#36
I've been testing my new SDS 200 for a week and my 536 is consistently better in the 453 mhz range. Both radios are on the same DPD Omnix antenna on my roof. The 536 picks up towns in that range 18 & 20 miles away where the 200 doesn't even break the squelch. There a lot of hills & tall trees in my area but that doesn't seem to bother the 536. I've been trying out different filter settings on the 200 to no avail. I also have the latest firmware.
Until the filter settings firmware was released, mine was also. If you haven't tried the filters at the Site/Department level try that. Global settings might not work the same per system. If it doesn't work, keep the 536 for what doesn't work well on the 200 and vice versa.
 

MrThompson

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Premium Subscriber
Joined
Aug 31, 2005
Messages
47
Location
Kalifornia
#37
Here's a link regarding the difference between Li-Ion and Li-Po. Lithium Ion vs Lithium Polymer Batteries - Which Is Better?

Bottom line, Li-Po is less likely to catch fire, leak or exploded than Li-Ion.
View attachment 70709
I've been testing my new SDS 200 for a week and my 536 is consistently better in the 453 mhz range. Both radios are on the same DPD Omnix antenna on my roof. The 536 picks up towns in that range 18 & 20 miles away where the 200 doesn't even break the squelch. There a lot of hills & tall trees in my area but that doesn't seem to bother the 536. I've been trying out different filter settings on the 200 to no avail. I also have the latest firmware.
I had similar results with the SDS100. Have you tried turning the filters off?
 

thom

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Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 26, 2003
Messages
189
Location
Connecticut shore
#38
Until the filter settings firmware was released, mine was also. If you haven't tried the filters at the Site/Department level try that. Global settings might not work the same per system. If it doesn't work, keep the 536 for what doesn't work well on the 200 and vice versa.
Yup, I will continue to experiment with the filter system and hopefully I will eventually understand how the filter system works.
 
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