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User Manual for MTS2000

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benjaminfs733

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I have looked and looked for a manual for the Motorola MTS2000 and MDS2000 and can't find one. Any help would be great. Specifically I need to know how to select what channels I want the radio to scan and which ones I don't. Sounds crazy but the people in charge don't like to give the users of the radio much flexibility in programing and I would like more. Thanks.

Ben
 

mikewazowski

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You should be able to order a users manual from Motorola.

Unfortunately, any button or menu item can be setup as Scan Program. If your radio shop doesn't want people to reprogram scan lists, they probably haven't setup a scan program button or menu item.
 

MMIC

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Inside of the circuit....
Mike's right - the entire radio is completely configurable by the programmer. They can enable and disable the ability for the end user to change the scan lists. If you have an MTS-2000 with a display, try pressing the right or left arrows until a "PROG" menu appears. If one appears, press the dot "." button directly below the "PROG" menu. Then a menu should appear that says "SCAN". Press the dot "." button directly below the "SCAN" menu. At this point, you should be able to page through the channels in your zone with the channel selector, and change zones with the right and left arrows. Use the bluish/greenish button on the side of the radio to select and de-select members from your scan list. Members that are in the scan list have a "Z" above the talk group name. You will be limited to a certain number of channels in your scan list, so if the radio gives you a low-pitched "bonk" when you press the bluish/greenish button on the side of the radio, you have reached the limit to the number of members in your scan list and will need to take other members out of the scan list in order to add the talk group that you are wanting. Press the "HOME" button to exit the scan list programming mode.

If you are unable to access any of the aforementioned menus in your radio, they have locked out the ability to program your scan lists.

I would not suggest ordering a user's guide from Motorola. They are very vague and are not very helpful since nearly all of the buttons and switches are programmable. It gives a good overview on the radio, but overall are not helpful. Not to mention the fact that the guide will carry that proud Motorola price tag. :)
 
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avfd2922

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42
Location
Kentucky
Ben, knowing that most of the MTS's do not have the keypad on them (lots of options with those) you have to have your radio reprogrammed to do what you want. You can try Mobile Communications (yeah those people who originally programmed them) to have it scan the way you want. Could be the way the department wanted all of them to be. Another option (this is the secret), contact Craig Peay at BGMU Safety Office to see if he can or would help you. The reason you don't have much flexibility is because of the Radio Committee. Very strict on what can and cannot be done with the radio system, adding radios and who gets what channels. Other than that you have no options. Sorry.
 

benjaminfs733

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Thanks for all the info. Unfortunately avfd2922 knows my situation very well and I will not need any further assistance on this issue, since what I am asking cannot be done without special permission.

Ah well, just seems strange to me that we buy a trunked system in 1997 to better communicate, but they will not let a Police Officer monitor the Fire Department. We don't even have their Mutual Aid channel! Now the City Police do have the county fire departments mutual aid, but it sure is unlikely we will use that. And coupled with that is the fact that if there was a CRT (Critical Response Team, aka SWAT) call and I was working I could not scan the CRT channel because it is not one of the preprogrammed channels that I am allowed to scan. Sorry for venting but this whole interoperability and trunked thing really makes me angry when before we had a trunked system we had the ability to talk to anyone in the city/county, now we don't. In my own opinion this puts lives a risk.

Ben
 

acegta2002

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Ben, Same thing where I work. We have a command channel and the officers are not allowed to have it, but everyone (NEWS Media Etc.) haveit. I went around the monitoring situation by buying a good scanner. Unfortunately it came to that but, it works.
 

benjaminfs733

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Yep, hate to see to go to that level but I also have a scanner in my car. And there have been many instances in the last several weeks where it has been really handy. I guess I will keep pushing for change. Nice to know I am not the only one having trouble with this.

Ben
 

richardc63

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benjaminfs733 said:
Thanks for all the info. Unfortunately avfd2922 knows my situation very well and I will not need any further assistance on this issue, since what I am asking cannot be done without special permission.

Ah well, just seems strange to me that we buy a trunked system in 1997 to better communicate, but they will not let a Police Officer monitor the Fire Department. We don't even have their Mutual Aid channel! Now the City Police do have the county fire departments mutual aid, but it sure is unlikely we will use that. And coupled with that is the fact that if there was a CRT (Critical Response Team, aka SWAT) call and I was working I could not scan the CRT channel because it is not one of the preprogrammed channels that I am allowed to scan. Sorry for venting but this whole interoperability and trunked thing really makes me angry when before we had a trunked system we had the ability to talk to anyone in the city/county, now we don't. In my own opinion this puts lives a risk.

Ben
Ben,

I'm the "bad guy" for one of Australia's major fire services... we also don't permit our radio users to choose what they want to scan. Scanning is a handy feature when used properly but a potentially dangerous feature when misused. Some users seem to think they can hear ALL of the channels anytime they want if they use scan. I don't support firefighters in the field scanning other agencies unless they carry a second radio dedicated to the fire service... they NEED to hear their comms centre, they only would LIKE to hear other agencies. Any function that introduces the risk of critical agency messages being missed (and scanning does that) can't be afforded. If they NEED to listen to the other agency, they can carry another radio.

We've never activated the Scan button in our Motorola radios... and yes I've fielded calls from grumpy firefighters MANY times!

Cheers,


Richard
 

benjaminfs733

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Nashville, TN
Richard,

I would in no way think you are the "bad guy". In fact I agree with you, almost. Most of the time there is no need for a larger busy department to listen to other another agency.
However, some exceptions would be.

(1) The University department usually scans our local PD channel. I cannot count the number of times, without our prompt, they have assisted on traffic stops, chasing down robbers, in shootings and other types of assistance only because they usually "scan" our channel and respond when close. They are a very valuable asset. At the same time it is nearly impossible to the city to monitor the University because the city is so busy.

(2) An ambulance is parked a safe distance from an active structural fire, just in case a firer fighter or someone else is injured. If they are going to stage there and not respond to any other calls why can they not scan the FD channel? In our county I don't believe they even have the fire departments channel (first issue) but even if they did it would seem good to scan that one channel and respond the moment they know they are needed rather than the FD calling dispatch who calls the ambulance dispatch who calls the ambulance and tells them where to go. Some where in all of that something is always lost and it is not just time.

(3) A few months back we had a large event in town. What went from a normal shift of 15 Officers grew to more than 30 in the cit, 20 state police and more. The city used 2 channels (which is unusual for us) just for calls for assistance and then used a third channel for special teams to respond to the events. We could not scan anything. Even the special teams who just sat and waited to be called could not scan the normal channel. What happened is that I would answer a call say an assault in progress across the street from one of the special detail units and they would have no idea why I was there or sometimes that I was even there.

Sorry for the the long stories, but all this to say that most of the time there is no need to scan but for some departments and some occasions it is vital to effective communications and safety.

Thanks for letting me vent.

Ben
 

mikewazowski

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So far you've not proven to me that you need to scan other channels.

1) if an event occurs on campus involving officer safety and your officers are busy scanning the local PD, where's his assistance? It's possible that all the officers are tied up on the local PD channel since it's so busy. If there's a need for a university officer to respond, then the request should be relayed by the dispatcher to your dispatcher.

2) in our area (yours might be different), the ambulance on standby is also available for regular calls. If there's a priority medical call across the street, it makes sense that they respond and another ambulance be brought in for standby. Better to respond to the emergency at hand then sit there waiting for an emergency to happen. If they are needed at scene, then the request can be relayed through the dispatchers or they can be given a fire radio.

3) Sounds more like a breakdown in communications. The dispatchers should be communicating and any need for additional units should be relayed through them.

I'm sure the radio shop (and the system manager) have a protocol in place that details why you are not given scan. Why not meet with them (include your boss) and see why they won't give you scan? I'm sure they've got their reasons.

If they won't give you scan, then make sure the proper procedures are in place to avoid problems. Properly document the incidents where scan would have helped (time, date, place, channel, units involved) so they can pull the logs and find out where the breakdown in communications occured.

I'd hate to be the guy that reprograms his radio with scan and ends up missing a crucial life & safety call on his own channel because his radio was tied up listening to some event that didn't concern him.

A relative of mine was a k9 unit for a large ps. The smaller towns would call him in for assistance when needed (always through his dispatcher). They ended up giving him a second radio to monitor the smaller towns dispatch (with scan) so he could still monitor his regular dispatch channel at all times.

Perhaps you need to get your department to purchase a scanner for each officer on duty?
 

benjaminfs733

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Mike,

You hit the nail on the head. The issue is our whole communication setup and procedure (including communication staff and equipment) does not operate to its full potential. A scan feature will not solve the problem. However, I do believe that it could help in many of our situations locally without causing safety issues.
You did however give me some great ideas for ways to go about changing things, or at least attempting to change things and I appreciate your thoughts. Keeping a log of when there are problems, what they are and making suggestions is a great idea.
As for asking communication supervisors and the radio shop about procedures, they cannot answer my questions. They often say, that is just the way it is and have no idea why. For example, many of our dispatchers and dispatch supervisors believe that when one of the frequencies goes bad in our trunked system (which happens here on occasion and every time that frequency is used the transmission is unreadable) they can simply tell the Officers to use channel 2 (that should give you some idea of the understanding for our local trunked system by some of the people who are in charge of it). And unfortunately it does not get much better at the radio shop. Where I know the man who controls the system. I have a print out from the original design and program of the system in 1996. It has all kinds of info on channels, who uses them, etc. Does he have this, no. I went there to get an updated one and he wanted of a copy of what I have.
Sorry again for the long reply. I will take your suggestions to heart as I have a long uphill battle ahead of me.

Ben
 

richardc63

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Location
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benjaminfs733 said:
Mike,

You hit the nail on the head. The issue is our whole communication setup and procedure (including communication staff and equipment) does not operate to its full potential. A scan feature will not solve the problem. However, I do believe that it could help in many of our situations locally without causing safety issues.
You did however give me some great ideas for ways to go about changing things, or at least attempting to change things and I appreciate your thoughts. Keeping a log of when there are problems, what they are and making suggestions is a great idea.
As for asking communication supervisors and the radio shop about procedures, they cannot answer my questions. They often say, that is just the way it is and have no idea why. For example, many of our dispatchers and dispatch supervisors believe that when one of the frequencies goes bad in our trunked system (which happens here on occasion and every time that frequency is used the transmission is unreadable) they can simply tell the Officers to use channel 2 (that should give you some idea of the understanding for our local trunked system by some of the people who are in charge of it). And unfortunately it does not get much better at the radio shop. Where I know the man who controls the system. I have a print out from the original design and program of the system in 1996. It has all kinds of info on channels, who uses them, etc. Does he have this, no. I went there to get an updated one and he wanted of a copy of what I have.
Sorry again for the long reply. I will take your suggestions to heart as I have a long uphill battle ahead of me.

Ben
Ben,

I think Mike summed up the reasons the fire department I work for will not permit user definable scan groups extremely well.

There are so many alternate ways to provide inter-agency liaison that are more effective than scanning. For example, we have for years provided shared ESO/First Responder talkgroups and simplex channels- in some areas they are very well used, in other areas not at all. Every radio we have has these. Funny thing, the people who don't use it are the ones who have previously ask for user definable scan while those who do use it seem satisfied that this approach works. The key is to formulate the comms plans, know how to communicate, and don't think tinkering with technology will solve all of your problems.

I don't know your situation or the competence of your techs, however I have found that firefighters THINK they know more about how things work than they really do. They underestimate the amount of thought & planning that we techos put into protecting their welfare. Most work with us but the odd one thinks he knows better... they usually are the ones that get themselves into hot water.

Mike's advice was very sound.



Richard
 

benjaminfs733

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Thanks to both of you. I only wish that you worked in my area. As for the tech, he is really great, I have helped him on several occasions "track down problems in the system" so when he gets a all at 3 am he should have some idea what the problem is. Unfortunately the person(s) in the city/county who run the system will not listen to him. We both share a desire to reorganize the system into one that works better for all agencies. So much has changed since the system was set in place; new users, old channels, new channels, that the system just does not work real well. But trying to get people to listen is difficult. I guess that is where taking some of the advice from above and working closely with the radio shop will help. Again thank for all the advice.

Ben
 

franka00213

Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2005
Messages
9
One thing to add, on my motorola mts2000 800 i have the ability to scan and set a priority channel so when my channel talks it switches there immedately. Just a thought, cant they do that for Bens radios?
 
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