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Using V1.3 Public Safety Firmware for scanning - A Few Tips

BenScan

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 12, 2001
Messages
636
Hi Fellow Scannerheads, I’ve been using the latest version of Unication Firmware for Public Safety, which is currently 1.3. I have a few things to share that might be helpful for those using the G4/5s as scanners to get great reception on P25 trunked systems.

First: The new TG Hold and Blok functions are AWESOME! Thank you Unication! This makes the radios MUCH more enjoyable and easier to use. You must turn these on in Pre-Programming Software (PPS) Tab D8 Pager Configuration Setting, under “Talk Group Hold and Remove Setting”(in the blue zone). Simply check TG Hold Setting and TG Remove Setting, which will add those functions to the radio’s soft menus, after re-programming with PPS. While you’re in that area, you’ll probably want to disable BT Headset Incoming Call Notification, right above in the green zone. This turns off any call announcements that your Blue Tooth devices may normally use for cell phone use.

With previous versions, if I wanted to focus on a particular talk group, I dedicated multiple Zone/Channel Positions to the same system, but change the priority order of the talk groups. Doing that on a very busy systems helped me to hear the things I wanted to hear fairly well. That method caused problems for me. I had so much stuff programmed, I would have problems because of memory issues with the firmware. Often, when a transmission would start, the radios would begin a loop of rebooting. Recently, I tried using Blue Tooth earbuds again, and that too would trigger the infinite rebooting loop. Well, now that I have the TG Hold function, I don’t need all of those extra knob positions, because I can simply hold on the TG I want to monitor when the action starts. I deleted all of the duplicated channels positions, freeing up more memory for the radio to work. Yay!

When setting up the TG Hold function, you’ll notice an option for TG Hold Timeout. With that, the radio can remove the TG Hold after a set number of minutes. I’ve only checked this a little bit, but I have a feeling it’s a bit buggy still. You can also toggle a TG Un-Hold Alert beep. I guess that might help you realize that you’ve inadvertently un-held a talk group. I’m not using that function for now.

I’ve also noticed, as many others have posted about, that the audio was often delayed significantly, compared to real radios and scanners. I was thinking this was due to recording, new features and functions of the firmware, and increased overhead to support those. After reading others’ suggesting to turn off Voice Buffering(PPS Tab D6 Zone and Channel Setting), and trying it myself, I’m now enjoying close to synced audio when other radios are on in the area, AND, a much more responsive keypad on the radios.

One of the other neat new features is the ability to enter “Call Aliases” in PPS Tab D5, Member List area. If you know the radio IDs for particular users, you can have radio display the Call Alias instead of the ID. Neato!

One more feature that I really hope Unication adds is the ability to scroll to a particular talk group, and hold it, without having to wait for it to become active and then timing it just right to hold. Currently, you can use the center controller(joystick thingy), and scroll down to see system information including the up to 64 talk groups you’ve assigned. That seems like a logical place to add the ability to select a talk group, similarly to how we select zones now.

I hope all of that is useful and helpfully information for others using the great G4 and G5 like I do, and I hope Unication keeps up the great improvements.

Happy Scanning!

Ben Saladino, KCIRJ

Working Photos by Ben Saladino
 

bberns22

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Sep 30, 2007
Messages
195
Location
West Chester PA
TG hold really needs to be complimented with a scan delay. Finding that hold implementation less than effective as its almost impossible to activate it before the transmission has dropped and moved to another TG. Waiting for 1.4 to get that much needed necessity....
 

JASII

Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2006
Messages
2,550
...First: The new TG Hold and Blok functions are AWESOME! Thank you Unication! This makes the radios MUCH more enjoyable and easier to use...
That is a great post. Have you used Wildcard and then Blok during Wildcard, yet?
 

MaXKiLLz

Member
Joined
Nov 6, 2012
Messages
50
Location
Florida
TG hold really needs to be complimented with a scan delay. Finding that hold implementation less than effective as its almost impossible to activate it before the transmission has dropped and moved to another TG. Waiting for 1.4 to get that much needed necessity....
I wholeheartedly agree. Scan delay is an absolutely must!
 

BenScan

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 12, 2001
Messages
636
That is a great post. Have you used Wildcard and then Blok during Wildcard, yet?
I have not tried it with V1.3 yet. I typically do not need it, as I'm scanning well-known systems/TGs with my Unications. I use Discovery Mode on numerous Uniden scanners as well as Unitrunker to find new stuff.
 

letarotor

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
813
Location
Arlington, TX
Thanks for the tips Ben. I'm about to the point of where I'm going to do my firmware update on my G5 after not having done any firmware updates or programming in the last year or longer. I'm a little nervous about it hoping that just jumping ahead to this firmware version 1.3 will not cause me to have any problems since I haven't done previous firmware versions. But I'm also excited about some of the new features in the latest firmware version and I'm looking forward to hopefully being able to use what you just described in your tips. Anyhow, thank you for the info and I look forward to checking it out probably this week.

Brian (COMMSCAN)
 

DJ11DLN

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 23, 2013
Messages
2,102
Location
Mudhole, IN
That's it, I'm done dragging my feet, gonna order me one of these things tomorrow. I'll just stop buying food for awhile...need to lose some weight anyway. o_O

Seriously, thanks for that FW review, I've been toying with the idea for a long time but that really did make my mind up for me.
 

bob550

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 5, 2005
Messages
1,464
Location
Albany County, NY
That's it, I'm done dragging my feet, gonna order me one of these things tomorrow. I'll just stop buying food for awhile...need to lose some weight anyway.
You won't have any regrets! The V1.3 firmware is a game changer, and the associated PPS update eliminates some nagging drawbacks we've had with earlier versions.
 

DJ11DLN

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 23, 2013
Messages
2,102
Location
Mudhole, IN
You won't have any regrets! The V1.3 firmware is a game changer, and the associated PPS update eliminates some nagging drawbacks we've had with earlier versions.
I've wanted one since they first came to our attention here because it's a neat gizmo and I appreciate commercial-grade gear. But the only LSM I routinely encounter is when I drive 60 miles to visit my grandchildren, and that's just for the last 15 miles or so coming and going (scanner's off when I'm playing with the kiddies). So it's been hard to justify. But @BenScan's glowing review kinda pushed me over the edge and now I'm looking forward to a new toy. I have a Jeep so being able to use BT earbuds while I'm out and about in that will be nice...I'm using noise-cancelling wireline buds now and I always get the cord tangled up with the shifter.:oops:
 

Hit_Factor

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 6, 2010
Messages
1,728
Location
Saint Joseph, MI
These are good monitors, LSM isn't the only reason to go with one of these pagers. I had a couple Uniden SDS100s and sold them off. I really only monitor LEO on P25 TRS. I now have two G5s VHF and UHF (home and truck). Battery life, form factor, audio, receiver sensitivity all seem better than what I had. The SDS100 has capabilities I didn't need and many are duplicated by my R30 (by far my best handheld receiver).
 

Robscan

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 12, 2009
Messages
10
Location
United States
Hi Fellow Scannerheads, I’ve been using the latest version of Unication Firmware for Public Safety, which is currently 1.3. I have a few things to share that might be helpful for those using the G4/5s as scanners to get great reception on P25 trunked systems.

First: The new TG Hold and Blok functions are AWESOME! Thank you Unication! This makes the radios MUCH more enjoyable and easier to use. You must turn these on in Pre-Programming Software (PPS) Tab D8 Pager Configuration Setting, under “Talk Group Hold and Remove Setting”(in the blue zone). Simply check TG Hold Setting and TG Remove Setting, which will add those functions to the radio’s soft menus, after re-programming with PPS. While you’re in that area, you’ll probably want to disable BT Headset Incoming Call Notification, right above in the green zone. This turns off any call announcements that your Blue Tooth devices may normally use for cell phone use.

With previous versions, if I wanted to focus on a particular talk group, I dedicated multiple Zone/Channel Positions to the same system, but change the priority order of the talk groups. Doing that on a very busy systems helped me to hear the things I wanted to hear fairly well. That method caused problems for me. I had so much stuff programmed, I would have problems because of memory issues with the firmware. Often, when a transmission would start, the radios would begin a loop of rebooting. Recently, I tried using Blue Tooth earbuds again, and that too would trigger the infinite rebooting loop. Well, now that I have the TG Hold function, I don’t need all of those extra knob positions, because I can simply hold on the TG I want to monitor when the action starts. I deleted all of the duplicated channels positions, freeing up more memory for the radio to work. Yay!

When setting up the TG Hold function, you’ll notice an option for TG Hold Timeout. With that, the radio can remove the TG Hold after a set number of minutes. I’ve only checked this a little bit, but I have a feeling it’s a bit buggy still. You can also toggle a TG Un-Hold Alert beep. I guess that might help you realize that you’ve inadvertently un-held a talk group. I’m not using that function for now.

I’ve also noticed, as many others have posted about, that the audio was often delayed significantly, compared to real radios and scanners. I was thinking this was due to recording, new features and functions of the firmware, and increased overhead to support those. After reading others’ suggesting to turn off Voice Buffering(PPS Tab D6 Zone and Channel Setting), and trying it myself, I’m now enjoying close to synced audio when other radios are on in the area, AND, a much more responsive keypad on the radios.

One of the other neat new features is the ability to enter “Call Aliases” in PPS Tab D5, Member List area. If you know the radio IDs for particular users, you can have radio display the Call Alias instead of the ID. Neato!

One more feature that I really hope Unication adds is the ability to scroll to a particular talk group, and hold it, without having to wait for it to become active and then timing it just right to hold. Currently, you can use the center controller(joystick thingy), and scroll down to see system information including the up to 64 talk groups you’ve assigned. That seems like a logical place to add the ability to select a talk group, similarly to how we select zones now.

I hope all of that is useful and helpfully information for others using the great G4 and G5 like I do, and I hope Unication keeps up the great improvements.

Happy Scanning!

Ben Saladino, KCIRJ

Working Photos by Ben Saladino
Do you have a photo of the settings in PPS? For Call Aliases” in PPS Tab D5, Member List area. If you know the radio IDs for particular users, you can have radio display the Call Alias instead of the ID. Neato!
Rob
N1ALF
 

W4KRR

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 1, 2001
Messages
3,058
Location
Coconut Creek, FL
I have noticed that under D5, Group & Group Call ID settings, if you right click on the headings you can sort them. However not all of the headings allow for this. So, if I sort the list by the Call Alias, how would I then go back and sort again by the "No." column? It doesn't appear that you can.
 

bob550

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 5, 2005
Messages
1,464
Location
Albany County, NY
I have noticed that under D5, Group & Group Call ID settings, if you right click on the headings you can sort them. However not all of the headings allow for this. So, if I sort the list by the Call Alias, how would I then go back and sort again by the "No." column? It doesn't appear that you can.
You would have to manually move each line by placing the cursor on the entry number, then click and drag to its new location.
 
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