Which one would you buy SDS 100/SDS200 or Unication G5?

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Bizzle

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Help! I'm in Lake county, Painesville area, and already have a 436HP. My listening consists of mostly the MARCS-IP system in my area. For some reason, I can't receive the Cleveland system at all from my location. Would like to add them to my listening and I've read that the SDS radios do better at capturing farther away signals. Considering purchasing a SDS 100 or 200. Knowing what I've stated, which one would you invest in?
 

northernsummit

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Are you trying this with a regular rubber duck antenna on that 436?

You may be simply too far even with a dramatic improvement to your antenna / elevation. Put all the control channels of the GCRCN sytem into your scanner as regular narrow band FM frequencies and see if you can hear the controll channel data at all. You may not even be able to hear it yourself, let alone have a good enough signal for the radio to decode.

The SDS200 isn't magically more receptive of distant signals. Its better at dealing with the CQPSK signal and preventing simulcast distortion. As far away as you are you shouldn't have any issues at all with GCRCN simulcast as you'll be lucky to hear just one of the sites in the system.
 

cstetter

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SDS200! If you get out and go places a lot, SDS100 is preferred
 
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northernsummit

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I am. All different types of handheld antennas for that matter.
The Cleveland system was not designed for handheld coverage in Painesville. You might be able to hear it with a Yagi pointed at the Eastside tower as high up as you can get it while remaining outside, but even then you still may not be able to hear it very well. Unless it was you this is the second time this question has come up in 48 hours
 

jonwienke

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The SDS100 and 436 are roughly the same at raw signal reception. The difference is that the SDS100 can decode simulcast (multiple transmitters broadcasting the same signal simultaneously on the same frequency), but the 436 (and every other non SDS scanner model) has difficulty doing so. There can be a full-strength signal, but the 436 and the rest may hear nothing.

Newer systems use multiple low-powered transmitters, often simulcast, and often with directional antennas, instead of a few high-powered transmitters. That means you get better coverage inside the intended service area of the system, but less signal spills outside the intended coverage area. So if you don't live in or near Cleveland, hearing their system may not be possible.
 

scannerboy02

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While I am not familiar with the geography of the Cleveland area I will say the Unication G4 is far superior at receiving distant sites. My Unication's get sites that all of my other radios including Motorola radios can't get.
 

mitbr

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I have the 436 and G5 Unication....When I first turned on my newly programmed G5 with my 436 beside me on the couch I was SHOCKED!! I could not believe the reception on the G5. It was hearing a p25 system that was 25 miles away on its little stubby antenna on the couch while the 436 heard nothing didn't even pick up the data channel. So I would say the G5 is considerably better at receiving than the 436. When I put my large 800 mhz yagi antenna onto the G5, I can regularly get p25 systems 50 miles away while 436 hears nothing. YMMV
Tim :cool:
 
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wa8pyr

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Personally, my preference is the SDS100. It's far more flexible for general scanning (especially since it covers all the scanner bands, not just some of those typically used for trunking) and the more I dig into the more esoteric settings I find that it really is top notch.

I also have a Unication G5 (which is great) but it's designed specifically as a pager, not a scanner; it isn't particularly useful for anything but scanning a specific area while you're sitting there. It's also missing many of the typical scanner features such as hold, search and so on, although the latest beta firmware adds a couple of those features like hold.

However, as others have noted, you're probably not going to receive the Cleveland system from Painesville no matter what you do.
 
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