Which Scanner should I get...

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scottct1

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I am looking at putting a scanner in my truck.

I am not sure what I should get I am looking at the BCD996XT and the BCT15X.

Here in Connecticut I believe the only thing Digital is the Connecticut State Police, which I really don't listen to but this is because I use my other scanner to broadcast my local police department on Radio Reference. :)

Is it worth getting Digital is there anything else on digital in CT or should I save $200 and get the BCT15X?

I live in Newington and drive mostly in Hartford County.

While I would like to get the GPS ad on, I am going to hold off for now, since I am mostly in one place.

Which would you get?
 

nyemt774

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Hey Scott,

Just my opinion, but I would probably go with the 15x if you're going to use it in your truck. Unless there's something you're really looking for to listen to, the 15x really covers all the bands. I have a 15x as my primary base unit, I love it. I could put it in my vehicle if I desire. Why gove overboard on a unit? Save yourself some money and get the 15x. Does a good job...
 

W1RHW

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I have the BCT15, and it is awesome for CT. I think just about the only thing you can't pickup in Hartford County (that I can think of) are the State Police, Operations at Bradley Intl, Glastonbury PD, and Hartford Hospital. If you plan on keeping it longer, and don't mind paying the money, I would pickup the 996XT for future-proofing as more and more systems move to digital voice
 

cg

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I would caution you that you will likely have the radio for a few years and that more systems will go digital in that time. I believe there are several PD/FD/EMS organizations in the greater Danbury area that have gone digital in the last year. Other threads indicate New Haven is going digital.

If an agency needs to buy new radios to comply with the Narrowbanding mandate, they may see it as an opportunity to go digital.

chris
 

hoser147

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Just some things to consider, lots of agencies will be going to digital in the future. If you ever move to a different location you might also need a digital scanner to monitor there, or on a trip it may come in handy.
 

JohnO44

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Save up your money and buy a Uniden BC396XT.

You can use the portable units anywhere; just plug into an amplified speaker in your truck.
You will need digital, 700Mhz band, and NAC code decryption soon for most areas of CT..
Ct ST PD is extremely interesting and all preprogrammed on the 396XT.
 
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I figure I'll throw in my opinion since I've had quite the experience with scanners. If you want to listen to a digital, I'd definetly wait till you can afford one, Or consider getting a used one, Such as a Uniden BC296/796D, or a BCD396T. The thing that is good about portables as mentioned by John044, is that you can use them anywhere, and if needed, They can be hooked up to a mobile, or even base antenna.

Used digital scanners can be had for relatively inexspensive, Usually around $300 depending on where you're looking and which one you're looking at.

If you travel at all on the highways in CT, I'd highly reccomend the digital variety of scanner.
 

cg

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if you do go the used route, be sure the unit is upgradeable for rebanding. For Uniden, the 785 and 250 are not upgradeable. I can't speak for GRE/Radio Shack but there is lots of info towards that on this site.

chris
 

ka3jjz

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On the wiki homepage (float your mouse over wiki in the blue toolbar under the Scanner Master homepage, select wiki homepage) there is a link for scanners that support rebanding in the Popular topics area. Click on that, then the model number of the scanner you wish to examine

73 Mike
 

snowscout

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Go digital. Get the BCD396XT and get a good after market antenna like the Watson WSMA-881 to replace the supplied rubber duck. Also a good investment, rechargeable batteries. The supplied batteries are NiCd and you are provided an AC adapter to charge said batteries. I invested in extra rechargeables and a charger so that I could swap out depleted batteries with a fresh set. Another thing if you go this route, keep track of what is recharged and what is not. I hope this helps.
 

izzyj4

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Other threads indicate New Haven is going digital.
Chris, who is going digital, let along going trunking in New Haven County??? The only systems that are trunked in NHC are Waterbury, Yale Univ. and Yale-West Haven campus. I haven't heard anything about anyone going digital / APCO 25 yet on trunked or conventional........Kinda interesting.


Getting back on topic, Scott unless you plan on traveling a lot around the state, that will determine what radio to get. You can go get the 15XT or the 996XT but also if you consider going with the hand held route, you have a little more versatility with moving it from car to house, ect. Also its a good security thing as you can "hid" the hand held in your car or just totally remove it.

Right now there are only a few APCO 25 / digital trunk systems / conventional transmitting systems in use in the state besides the state police. Westport is the only fire agency that I know of currently that transmits digital on a conventional repeater setup. Stamford has changed to an 800 trucked digital system / or is changing over (can't remember).

Think long and hard before you make a purchase what is right for you. Take a look around the database and see what systems are going to listen to, and also ask yourself "What would I want to eventually listen to?". Will you be traveling to another state where you may want to listen to an FD or a PD along the way? Just don't get caught doing the old "I should have gotten the other scanner" second guess though.

Hope you get what you need!
 

W1RHW

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I think I would only wait on buying a digital capable scanner if one of the companies made an announcement that in a year there would be TDMA technology (MOTOTRBO (unlikely because of vocoders needers) or P25 Phase II) within their scanners. That would give you the most long term capability, but I really think that if you picked up the current generation digital scanners, you won't be dissapointed. Scanners seem to last people a really long time, and trends indicate a lot of people will be using digital voice before you know it.

As far as New Haven, I am sure they will go digital voice relatively soon. They are all using XTS3000 and 5000 radios and the XTL/Astro Spectra counterparts, so it would really just be reprogramming of the units that would require the switch, not necessarily a big overhaul of the system.

I personally think you will be disappointed if you pick up an analog only scanner and then realize you want to listen to digital. Just really depends on how long you plan on holding on to the scanner
 

cg

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Izzy, that is my error, it was Bridgeport that was the subject of the digital thread, not New Haven. There are 5 digital public safety trunked systems running or testing in CT (I didn't count Hartford Hosp).

One thing to watch is the 2013 Narrowbanding mandate for VHF Hi & UHF. When new radios are purchased, there is an opportunity for upgrading a system. There are still Fire and Police grants being given although not as many as in recent years.

I would still recommend a digital scanner if affordable as it only takes the 1 system you always monitor to go digital and you would regret it.

chris
 
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