Tone Out Capturing

Chris52

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Can anyone point me in the right direction with a easy plug and play software to capture fire tone outs ? Has anyone tried doing this ? Any equipment suggestions ?

Thank you in advance
 

boatbod

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Tone pairs in my area
Well duh... oh course, but for what purpose?
If you're simply trying to identify them then chances are they are already known and documented.
If you are trying to use them for alerting then TTD is probably the tool to use.

By the way, did you know there can be differences between tones broadcase on VHF/UHF/P25Ph1 and those used on P25Ph2 systems. The latter are sent digitally rather than encoded analog, and sometimes tones pairs have to be modified to fit the specs. Here in Talbot Co if you listen to dispatch channels on both VHF and 700Mhz FiRST simultaneously you can hear different tones for some of the same stations.
 

maus92

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In AACo, the county plans to retain QCII type tones over analog VHF when the P25P2 system is built - if it's not broke, don't fix it. Not sure what's going on in STMC or Charles. I think Calvert is moving its FTO to VHF from low band, meaning it will not be using its new P25P2 system for station / personnel alerting.
 

boatbod

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In AACo, the county plans to retain QCII type tones over analog VHF when the P25P2 system is built - if it's not broke, don't fix it.
Talbot thought they were going to do that too, but it turns out some of the legacy analog tones are not valid in a digital system due to the AMBE tone detector having a wider permissible range for tone's frequency causing certain tones to appear in overlapping detection zones and not be uniquely identifiable. As a result, some stations were able to retain the same tone pairs on both VHF and 700, but others had to be assigned new tone pairs for the digital system while retaining their legacy analog tones the prevent the need for mass pager reprogramming.
 

maus92

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I think you are saying that the analog tones did not retain their "fidelity" when converted to digital for distribution over the backbone fiber / MW? I'm not sure how many VHF sites are used for FTO in AACo, and how the signalling is distributed - I'd have to research it. I do know they budget $1.5M to replace the "Zetron," but guessing by the cost, more stuff than just the tone generator is being replaced.
 

maus92

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Turns out AACo switched from a single 350W VHF site in Millersville to a 4 site simulcast paging system in 2005, lol. I guess it used 4 wire, or 2 wire to connect to the sites.
 

bc780l

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For analog paging systems, try: ComTekk Software
I've used their Multi Decoder for a long time. Accurate and logs for easy documentation.
 

maus92

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So is simulcast distortion what makes the audio quality on 154.010 so poor?
I'm not sure if I would classify it as "simulcast distortion" which is more often associated with digital simulcast systems. But there can be timing issues in overlap areas (where you are receiving more than one site.) Simulcast sites need routine adjustment to keep site timing within tolerances. On the SmartZone system, I can hear per channel differences in signal / audio quality on both analog and digital tgs. The VHF FTO channel seems OK for me from my location.
 

boatbod

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I think you are saying that the analog tones did not retain their "fidelity" when converted to digital for distribution over the backbone fiber / MW? I'm not sure how many VHF sites are used for FTO in AACo, and how the signalling is distributed - I'd have to research it. I do know they budget $1.5M to replace the "Zetron," but guessing by the cost, more stuff than just the tone generator is being replaced.
No, I'm saying that in a P25 Phase 2 system, tones are transmitted as a digital tone frame in a completely different manner than the way they are parameterized using the regular speech coded as done in P25 Phase 1. As a result there are limitations on how closely spaced the tones can be, so some previously usable tone pairs no longer work. It's sort of explained in the Unication QCII programming guide: https://fb99901f-174a-4717-b1bf-f75...d/9bbbf0_98a77784f77945668133befa08965252.pdf
 

maus92

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I see, but I was talking about AACo retaining their VHF analog QCII system for FTO when they transition to their P25P2 system, similar to the VHF QCII FTO system being separate from their current SmartZone system. In essence, no change, but a hardware refresh.
 

boatbod

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I see, but I was talking about AACo retaining their VHF analog QCII system for FTO when they transition to their P25P2 system, similar to the VHF QCII FTO system being separate from their current SmartZone system. In essence, no change, but a hardware refresh.
Gotcha. Talbot did much the same when they retained their existing analog paging infrastructure because "it still worked" and there were lots and lots of analog pagers out there. All was fine until the FCC made them turn down the power of on one of their transmitters causing reception problems at the north end of the county. With no way to improve reception without adding a VHF tower, they turned to FiRST as the solution and started digital QCII paging on the 700mhz fire dispatch channel. A year or two down the line and all county paramedics can now be seen wearing G5 pagers regardless of where they are stationed.
 

maus92

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AACo used to have the one fat 350W VHF transmitter in Millersville for paging. The contour for that site stretched into southern Pennsylvania, ahem. That system was replaced by a 4 site system a while ago. Tower site infrastructure is not an issue for AACo, so the county should not be forced to move from VHF for FTO.
 

w9sar

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Sorry if this has been answered previously, but I've searched and didn't see anything.

I have the BCD996P2 and running ProScan that I'm trying to capture fire/EMS tone-outs. I'm assuming there is a setting that I need to tweak, but when there is more than one tone-out in sequence (Fire Dept. 1, 2, 3, EMS - for a total of four tone-outs), I'm only capturing the first in the sequence. What do I need to do to capture all the tone-outs?
 

jtwalker

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Gettysburg, PA
Sorry if this has been answered previously, but I've searched and didn't see anything.

I have the BCD996P2 and running ProScan that I'm trying to capture fire/EMS tone-outs. I'm assuming there is a setting that I need to tweak, but when there is more than one tone-out in sequence (Fire Dept. 1, 2, 3, EMS - for a total of four tone-outs), I'm only capturing the first in the sequence. What do I need to do to capture all the tone-outs?
I have never used this, so I am not sure, but I believe the "Each FTO New Row" checkbox on the FTO Logging tab of ProScan might help you.
 
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