I'm a former resident of Tidewater and visited this weekend. With my 396T updated with the current ORION config from RR I was ready to listen to the changes with VB and other ORION stuff while I was there. I had read with interest the comments about difficulty so was interest to see.....
My wife and I stayed in a hotel in the Greenbrier section of Chesapeake on the top (4th) floor on the north side of the building. I had a clear CC signal with 3-4 bars of receive signal at all times but received virtually no transmissions. Sitting on the CC I saw no active talkgroups.
On Saturday evening we traveled to VB. While enroute my scanner woke up with all kinds of VB PD and FD traffic. It continued with great reception and clear transmissions during the evening as we traveled in the Stumpy Lake area and on Indian River Road. Later... back at the hotel; nothing.
In the Roanoke area I experienced a similar problem with the Roanoke Co P25 simulcast system. I've posted regarding this previously. Using several different scanners, I'd have great signal in one area but no traffic or activity. Drive 1/2 mile down the road with a similar signal and the system comes alive. I think in Roanoke it is a signal cancelling/phasing/competition from two sites. When you get closer to one it overrides the other, and the radio begins to be able to decode the system properly.
Now...... Could this be the same in the Greenbrier area given its geography relative to the three know active sites?? Beyond this explanation.... I'm scratching my head on my experience with ORION....
I live in Va Beach (near Indian River/Kempsville Roads). I am receiving the new ORION system system loud and clear here with a strong signal. It covers Fire, EMS, Sheriff and Police only from what I am hearing, I am using a BCD996XT scanner
I have been wondering if the 2 site system is the cause. There are times when, in the City proper, the signal strength meter reads zero. Is it looking for the other site?
I am going to try to program my radio as a single site to see if that changes anything.
Looking at the site info, both sites are at the same location, if I have interpreted the info correctly.
if you want to listen to Va Beach, only use the site 2 cc's I have expermented with having both sites in the same system and results were poor, it locked on site one and no TG's were heard I am using a pro 106 and pro 197
I am having the same issue...some stuff I get, some I do not. I am at the corner...Military and Indian River. I get Chesapeake, Norfolk, but barely VB. I am getting ready to put my DJ130 on the roof to get some more height. I hope that works...It will stink not to be able to hear. One thing though, the other night at 11:00 I was listening and my 106 picked up everything for about an hour...or at least more than it usually does. Weird.
I am not in the VA Beach area, but my understanding is the Orion system is designed as a "wide area" system. So each set of control channels only broadcasts the traffic for talkgroups that are active on that particular system. A talkgroup is only active if a unit operating on that particular talkgroup is affiliated with that system. So in simpler terms if all the Va Beach fire units are operating on system 2 then their talkgroups will only be broadcast through the system 2 control channels/voice channels. I believe that to be the case in Va Beach. So if you scan system 1 control channels you won't hear much traffic. Not being there I can't confirm this but a friend told me he had to remove all the system 1 control channels to get decent reception if Va Beach traffic.
Looking at the license data it appears that both system 1 and 2 are either collocated or very close. If that is so then it isn't really operating as most wide area systems do. Most wide area systems as you drive out of coverage of one site you drive into another and your talkgroups follow you the way STARS works. It appears Va Beach has both systems covering pretty much the same area so perhaps they just did it that way so they could save money (i.e. one zone controller) and system 1 is in affect the true ORION part while system 2 is in affect the Va Beach part.
This would explain why even if you have a strong signal you won’t receive any Va Beach traffic because you may be listening to the “wrong” system.
This is completely different from the problem in Roanoke. Roanoke’s problem is due to the fact that it is a 4 site simulcast system so in many places you are receiving the same or nearly the same signal from 2 or more sites. The scanner receiver is unable to properly decode these multiple sites since they are slightly out of sync (multipath probably) with each other but the Motorola equipment does work.
I am just curious but where do you get the 6 towers from? The data on RadioReference only indicates 3 sites. One in York Co and other two show the same coordinates in Va Beach. Does anyone have any FCC data on this system and it's sites?
The Virginia Beach Digital system use's the same towers that Virginia Beach has used for years. They are at 6009 Blackwater rd., 1848 Pleastant Ridge Rd., 908 Kempsville Rd., 3610 S Plaza Tr., 29th st. & Hololy Rd., and 4813 Shore Dr.
If you will program these control chanels in your scanner in a system 859.46250, 859.71250, 860.46250 and 860.71250 do not put any other frequencies in this system you will hear the new system. Download the Virginia Beach talk groups from the Orion System only. Do not put any Orion site 001 or 003 in with Virginia Beach. Put thes in a different system.
I have a RS PRO 2096. Am not familiar with this new Orion. Was picking up great until they went to this new system. I am not scanner Savy when it comes to reprogramming as I am a senior citizen. Do not know how to program to hear now and all I get is EMS. Is it easy for someone to tell me what to do to be able to hear VAPD and FD or should I just use some social security check money and go by another scanner pre programmed that will receive? Would appreciate any help and if I have to go buy another scanner would appreciate someone giving this ole man some advice on the best one as this new scanner will most likely out live me. Thank you all.
Chimney Hill Section of Virginia Beach
I live near intersection of Rosemont and Holland in Chimney Hilll section of Va Bch. I am about to pull what little hair out I got. Been trying to do this for a while. I will gladly bring scanner to you and will gladly pay you 75.00. I have bought preminum subscription, downloaded WP96 paid for software but nothing works. Went to radio shack today and paid 34.00 for another cord and driver thinking maybe mine was bad but I think it is just this ole man. I am a novice and not savy. Will gladly pay and bring to you my friend. Thank you so much.