• Effective immediately we will be deleting, without notice, any negative threads or posts that deal with the use of encryption and streaming of scanner audio.

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Whistler 1040 Programming, Win500 Assistance

B-One

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I just received a Whistler 1040 from a friend. I am trying to figure out how the darn thing processes information so that I can efficiently program it. I am trying to monitor Minnesota's P25 ARMER system in my area. I am programming with WIN500. I am pretty knowledgeable on how the P25 trunking system works, but I am trying to wrap my head around the object oriented scanning concept. Hopefully someone can help.

In the example I give below I have a few questions.

With MultiSite mode Roam enabled on all three systems: Will the scanner monitor the strongest site in each system, or the strongest site from one of the three systems?

Assuming that I have enabled all 3 lists: Will I hear traffic for list three that comes from site 1, or will I need to enter the control frequencies for site 1 into system C in order to hear those transmissions?

System (TSYS) A: County Alpha
Site 1, 2
Talkgroup (TGRP) L, M, N
List 1
MultiSite Mode: Roam

System (TSYS) B: County Beta
Site 3, 4
Talkgroup (TGRP) O, P, Q
List 2
MultiSite Mode: Roam

System (TSYS) C: State Agency Charlie
Site 5, 6
Talkgroup (TGRP) R, S, T
List 3
MultiSite Mode: Roam

Thank you for your assistance.
 

tvengr

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Location
Monkton, MD
If all 3 systems are enabled and the sites in each system are set to roam, the scanner will search for the best site in each system and scan all 3 systems. What you hear on each site depends on how the agency has set up the system and how the units affiliate with each site. The 2 sites on the same system may not carry the same traffic. That means that if your scanner is on site 2 of system A, you may not hear what is on site 1 of the same system. When traveling, it is a good idea to have the sites set to roam so that you hear what is occurring in your immediate area. If you are using a scanner at a fixed location and set the sites to stationary, it will pick up every programmed site that is within range on each system enabled. On statewide systems, you may hear traffic from an adjacent site in a different county so that the units are able to communicate with each other across county lines. The 1040 is limited to a maximum of 32 control channel and alternate frequencies for each system. If you would want to cover the entire state with the ARMER system, you would have to set up multiple ARMER systems, each with the sites covering different areas of the state. I am not familiar with Win500. I use ARC500 for my programming. I am familiar with your scanner. I have programmed many a Radio Shack Pro-106 which is essentially the same exact scanner as yours. What county and city are you in?
 
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B-One

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Messages
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If all 3 systems are enabled and the sites in each system are set to roam, the scanner will search for the best site in each system and scan all 3 systems.
That is one thing I needed to know; Thank you!

The 1040 is limited to a maximum of 32 control channel and alternate frequencies for each system.
Another thing I needed to know. I could have several counties on one system. This would be helpful if I were traveling.

You have helped my understanding greatly. I have just a few more questions.
  • My plan was to set up different services in different systems for my county. System 1 Law, System 2 EMS, System 3 Fire. If I pursue this setup, am I correct that I would need to have the same 3 sites programmed into each system I set up for my county?
  • In my county, county Law uses all three sites in the county plus the first ring of sites surrounding the county, so should I use Roam?
  • County Fire and EMS only use the closest site to the particular unit so should use Stationary?
  • Since State Patrol would use all the sites in it's district, am I correct I could use Roam if I wanted just the traffic in my district, but if I wanted to hear the neighboring district I would use Stationary and should have the sites from the neighboring district programmed in.

Revised Example

System (TSYS) A: County Law
Site 1, 2, 3
Talkgroup (TGRP) L, M, N
List 1
MultiSite Mode: Roam

System (TSYS) B: County Fire and EMS
Site 1, 2, 3
Talkgroup (TGRP) O, P, Q
List 2
MultiSite Mode: Stationary

System (TSYS) D: Neighboring County
Site 4, 5
Talkgroup (TGRP) R, S, T
List 3
MultiSite Mode: Roam

System (TSYS) C: State Patrol
Site 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Talkgroup (TGRP) R, S, T
List 3
MultiSite Mode: Stationary
 

B-One

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Messages
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You can set up different services on their own scan lists and use the same system for all of them.
Ok, now I am starting to put the pieces together. I am going to play a bit and read some more about the scanner portion of the equation. Thanks a ton. Now the wiki and UtahRadio stuff may make more sense.
 

B-One

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Messages
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I so appreciate your patience

...so if I am not scanning a list of TGs assigned to a particular system, the sites associated with that system are not being checked by the scanner. Correct?

If I have a talkgroup associated with 2 lists and each list is associated with a separate system, would the sites associated with those two systems both be checked by the scanner?
 

tvengr

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Feb 10, 2019
Messages
497
Location
Monkton, MD
In the programming software, you assign each talkgroup to a system and one or more scan lists. With object oriented programming, the talkgroup, system, sites, and all of the associated parameters for that talkgroup, system, and sites make up an object. What that means is that whenever that talkgroup is encountered in a scan list, the system and sites goes along with it. You can have talkgroups from several different systems in the same scan list. As I was saying before, you can put different services in their own scan lists and use the same system for all of them. I would suggest that you use a talkgroup only once in a single scan list. If the 1040 is the same as the Pro-106, there is a quirk in the firmware. Let's say that you put the same talkgroup in scan lists 1, 2, and 3. If you turn off a scan list, it will disable that talkgroup in all subsequent scan lists. If you turn off scan list 1, the talkgroup will be disabled in lists 2 and 3. If you turn off 2, it will work in 1 but not 3. If you turn off 3, it will work in 1 and 2. That being said, you can have police on scan list 1, fire on scan list 2, etc. and have them all use the same system and sites. I was going to download Win500 to do a file for you, but it looks like it is no longer available. I use Butel ARC500 for my programming and find it very easy and quick to use. If you had that software, I could help you out with your programming.
 

B-One

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Messages
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What that means is that whenever that talkgroup is encountered in a scan list, the system and sites goes along with it.
Thanks. That clears up a ton.

I would suggest that you use a talkgroup only once in a single scan list. If the 1040 is the same as the Pro-106, there is a quirk in the firmware. Let's say that you put the same talkgroup in scan lists 1, 2, and 3. If you turn off a scan list, it will disable that talkgroup in all subsequent scan lists. If you turn off scan list 1, the talkgroup will be disabled in lists 2 and 3. If you turn off 2, it will work in 1 but not 3. If you turn off 3, it will work in 1 and 2.
You have explained that well. I don't know if the firmware in my scanner has that issue, but there is no seems to be no sense in doubling TGs up in any case since that would take up memory.

I use Butel ARC500 for my programming and find it very easy and quick to use.
I am probably going to give that a try. Win500 has way too much clicking for my liking. I would rather highlight and past or delete rather than clicking each individual item.

If you had that software, I could help you out with your programming.
Thank you much! What you have done already is far better than creating something for me. You have increased my understanding how the scanner works which will allow me to create my own files.
 

Swipesy

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Jan 27, 2003
Messages
1,605
Location
Northern Ohio
One thing that has not been mentioned here that you need to be made aware of. This being an object based scanner does not have a SD Card and relies on the built in memory. This memory has a limit of 1,852 objects. An object is defined as frequenices, Talkgroups, Radio ID's. So each system you program with control and alt frequencies count as 1 object for each frequency. Same for conventional frequencies. Each freq is an object. Each Talkgroup is an object and each Radio ID is an object. Once you hit 1,852 objects you cannot add additional objects without deleting previously programmed object. The max can easily be reached with large systems.
 

tvengr

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Messages
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Location
Monkton, MD
B-One what is your county and city in Minnesota and what would you like to monitor? I would be very happy to create to create a file for you. If you can see all of the entries in the software, it will give you a good idea of how to do your own programming. Please let me know when you get ARC500. It has an Excel type editor and makes copying, cutting, pasting, and moving things around a snap. All of the talkgroups and their associated parameters appear on a single screen, making it very easy to see what you have in all of your scan lists.
 

B-One

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Messages
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I am actually up and running.

As you suggested, I have all of my local stuff in one system separated into 5 lists. I have the next ring of counties each into their own system. The local stuff comes in just fine. One of the neighboring counties is regularly affiliated with one of the ARMER sites, but the other neighboring counties only affiliate when one of their deputies or a State Patrol unit is in the county.

Right now the only limiting factor in my equation is the number of sites I can receive at my location. I have my main 800mhz antenna connected to a SDR system decoded through Unitrunker and DSD+. That antenna usually gets me 6 ARMER sites. I may tap into that antenna with the Whistler later to see what I can get. Right now I have the Whistler connected to a broadband antenna that will reliably get three ARMER sites. The rubber duck sometimes gets me 1 site if I am not in the basement.

I am going to try out the ARC500 software you suggested. Ideally I will figure out how to get my Unitrunker data into the ARC500 software.

Thanks a ton for all of your help.
 

tvengr

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Messages
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Location
Monkton, MD
You might consider connecting your main antenna to a Stridsberg MCA204M multicoupler. That will give you 4 outputs without any loss and provides isolation between the radios. I use 1 in my house and 1 in my vehicle. It has a frequency response of 25-1000Mhz. What version firmware do you have in your scanner? Latest CPU is v2.1. Latest DSP is v1.4. To check: Turn the radio off. Turn the radio on. While in the opening screen, press and release 3. Once you get ARC500, you can send me a copy of the file to inspect if you have any problems.
 

tvengr

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Feb 10, 2019
Messages
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Location
Monkton, MD
Disregard my previous post about the firmware version. That was for the Radio Shack Pro-106. There is a WS1040 firmware updater on the Whistler site.
 
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