Washington Co. trunked system

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salembene

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Hanover, MD.
I'm using a Radio Shack Pro 106 to monitor the Washington County trunked radio system. I'm located about one mile north of Hagerstown. I have a Radio Shack discone antenna about 30' in the air. I am able to hear the system but it is often garbled and distorted. Does anyone have any sigguestions?
 

lclark

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Welcome to the club! I live near Longmeadow Shopping Ctr and the signal is strong but the quality is very bad. I bought a PSR-800 and it does a lot better than my Uniden and radio shack scanners.
Take it out to the new hospital and see if you can rec any better. I have driven around town and have found spots where the signal is very good.
The Home Patrol scanner has an option, for extra cash of course, that will show the signal strength and quality. I receive poor quality here at home but good quality at other places.
All of my trunking scanners pick up Martinsburg and Franklin County very well. There is something wrong with Washington County's p25 system. Good luck trying to convince them of that!!!
 

kg4rgn

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Yes, but the lowest loss coax cable for the antenna. I get the TSR fine from Balanger Creek, Frederick with a Diamond discone and a BCD 996XT. The antenna is in the attic.
 

Gilligan

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Welcome to the club! I live near Longmeadow Shopping Ctr and the signal is strong but the quality is very bad. I bought a PSR-800 and it does a lot better than my Uniden and radio shack scanners.
Take it out to the new hospital and see if you can rec any better. I have driven around town and have found spots where the signal is very good.
The Home Patrol scanner has an option, for extra cash of course, that will show the signal strength and quality. I receive poor quality here at home but good quality at other places.
All of my trunking scanners pick up Martinsburg and Franklin County very well. There is something wrong with Washington County's p25 system. Good luck trying to convince them of that!!!
Not sure exactly what setup you have there but I monitor constantly from Eastern & Dual (only a mile or so away from you) and I barely need an antenna at all. I monitor most of the time with my old Optoelectronics DB32 1-inch antenna and occasionally with a tuned 6-inch UHF whip antenna. Both have very good signals. In fact, I've travelled all over Hagerstown and haven't noticed any areas with bad coverage. Is it possible that you are overloading your radio? I'm also using a PSR-800 and it handles the system nearly perfectly.
 

lclark

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Thanks for the post. I am using the stock antenna that came with the PSR-800. I have tried a discone mounted on a 20' mast. I have tried the 20DB attenuator
option all with no improvement. Did you "tweak" any of the settings on your scanner? I am using the default settings; don't know enough about P25 systems to try anything.

The Home Patrol scanner has an advanced feature that will analyze the P25 system along with other types of digital systems.
When I invoke the "analyze system" for the Wash. Co. P25 sys it shows a graphical display for signal strength, signal quality, and activity. The signal strength is always good at any of the various locations where I have run the test. The signal quality test varies greatly from location to location with my home being only %20 to %30 quality. Other locations indicate different higher percent quality signals and at those locations the scanner work great.

The signal strength on the P25 systems from Franklin Co. and Martinsburg are good and the quality is always close to %100. I don't mean to impugn the Wash. Co. system unfairly but given the results listed I can't think otherwise. There is something "different" about the Wash Co. sys than other P25 sys in the area.
I would be very happy if it is something that I am doing incorrectly; I just need it pointed out to me what it is.

I would welcome any constructive criticism or suggestions. Thanks again for the reply.

My 396t, 996T, PRO-106, and Home Patrol work fine on the Franklin Co. and Martinsburg P25 sys. but will not work on Wash Co. P25 sys.


lclark, wf3l
 

Gilligan

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http://forums.radioreference.com/gre-scanners/222583-stock-gre-uniden-antennas-vswr.html

The top post on the above-mentioned thread has a link/attachment to a PDF that shows how stock scanner antennas perform on different bands. Page 3 of the PDF shows that the PSR-800's antenna is pretty much useless at 460 MHz, which is why I stopped using it almost from Day 1 and switched to a UHF antenna. Then for kicks, I pulled out the 1-inch DB32, just to see what it could do, and found that it actually performed nearly as well as the UHF antenna. But the stock antenna is junk for the Washington County System.
 

Gilligan

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http://forums.radioreference.com/gre-scanners/222583-stock-gre-uniden-antennas-vswr.html

The top post on the above-mentioned thread has a link/attachment to a PDF that shows how stock scanner antennas perform on different bands. Page 3 of the PDF shows that the PSR-800's antenna is pretty much useless at 460 MHz, which is why I stopped using it almost from Day 1 and switched to a UHF antenna. Then for kicks, I pulled out the 1-inch DB32, just to see what it could do, and found that it actually performed nearly as well as the UHF antenna. But the stock antenna is junk for the Washington County System.
My Mistake... I didn't realize that this chart was actually showing VSWR and not antenna gain. To my own surprise, it seems that the stock antenna actually should perform very well at 460 MHz. I'll have to go back and check it out again, since I used the chart as a guide instead of my own testing. Thanks for the help, Larry. :)
 

mjkoe

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Apr 18, 2010
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Hagerstown PD

Gents,

Just bought a BD996XT. I live in Hagerstown, MD and wanted to know if hte Hagerstown PD frequency is encrypted or not. I cant seem to really find out. RF.com has one of the freqs encrypted (Law TAC, but not all seem to me to be encrypted. ????
 

Gilligan

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Hagerstown, MD
The dispatch channels for HPD and WCSO/MSP are not encrypted. Basically all other law enforcement channels are encrypted, though.
 
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