BCD436HP: Why can't I do this simple thing?

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UPMan

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The message you received is incorrect, then. It isn't clear from your posts whether you are adding a conventional (non-trunked) or trunked channel to the FL, and what happens (as I've tried to describe above) differs based on that information. If a trunked channel, it also matters whether it is a single-site trunked system or a multi-site trunked system.

I suspect that you are adding a trunked channel from a multi-site trunked radio system. If that is the case, then you need to give the scanner a bit more information to work from. First is to make sure that the Favorites List has been set to pay attention to your location (so that it will automatically ignore sites that are too far away to be received). By default, location control is off. To turn on location control for the Favorites List:

MENU --> Manage Favorites --> (select the FL to modify) --> Use Location Control --> Set to On

If you are familiar enough with the system to know which site carries the traffic for the channel you are interested in monitoring, you can further (or alternatively) limit scanning to that specific site by:

MENU --> Manage Favorites --> (select the FL to modify) --> Review/Edit System --> (select System to modify) --> Edit Site --> (select a site to avoid) --> Set Avoid --> Permanent Avoid
(repeat the last portion for each site you want to avoid until you have limited the sites to just what you want the scanner to use)
 

radioroo

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Again, incorrect.

Contrary to the help that others are trying to give you, your mind seems to be made up.

I wonder why so many others find the favorites lists to be one of the best features of the new scanners?

.
Probably because they create them using a computer. Right?
 

radioroo

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I appreciate the two people, fxd and Upman trying to help me here, I really do. I'm just struggling to get the favourites feature to do anything for me. I've put the last 3 hours into trying to do this and am failing miserably. I apologize if my posts seem ranty.
 

fxdscon

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If you know the reason and it's the same reason for everyone then I'd love to know the correct answer.
They took the advice of other posters trying to help them, read the materials in the links provided to them, and gained a knowledge of how the new scanners work... rather than start with the opinion that it just won't work.

.
 

radioroo

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I've taken the advice which was basically "read the manual". But I'm still not able to do the task I explained in my first post.

I am trying to add a channel I like to listen to which is on a trunked system, to a favourites list. I would like to then turn on only that list and listen to the activity on that channel. But when I add it to my favourites list and turn on only that list I cannot hear a thing. The scanner scans through a lot of labels but does not stop on the channel I wanted to listen to and all I get is silence as there is nothing to pick up.
 

radioroo

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Here's a conventional list I'd like to make. I'd like to add all the CB channels to a list called "CB". Do I have to go through all 40 channels and add them one by one to the list? Or can I highlight the dept "Citizens Band" and add that all to the list in one go?
 

phask

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Here's a conventional list I'd like to make. I'd like to add all the CB channels to a list called "CB". Do I have to go through all 40 channels and add them one by one to the list? Or can I highlight the dept "Citizens Band" and add that all to the list in one go?

Scroll down to any US county (probably CA Province also), select nationwide, right click Citizen Band and append to favorite - also has the option to create a new fav. at that time.

Done
 

jonwienke

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I am trying to add a channel I like to listen to which is on a trunked system, to a favourites list. I would like to then turn on only that list and listen to the activity on that channel. But when I add it to my favourites list and turn on only that list I cannot hear a thing. The scanner scans through a lot of labels but does not stop on the channel I wanted to listen to and all I get is silence as there is nothing to pick up.
When listening to trunked system, you don't listen to a "channel", you listen to a "talkgroup". A trunked system has a primary and alternate control frequency, and a pool of talk frequencies. When a user keys their mic, their radio transmits its user ID to the system. The system then picks an available talk frequency for that transmission, and sends out a notification on the control channels that talkgroup X should listen to talk frequency Y. The voice transmission is then forwarded from the user's radio to frequency Y.

This cycle repeats every time a user keys their mic, and the frequency chosen can be different every time a user keys their mic, depending on how many users are trying to talk at once, and how many talk frequencies are available. If you program a talk frequency into your scanner as a normal frequency, you'll get a random mix of traffic, depending on which talkgroup transmissions happen to ger routed to that frequency. If it's the last frequency on the system's list, you may not hear anything, unless every other talk frequency happens to be in use already.

What you want to do is go into the Sentinel database, look up the trunked system you want to monitor, and set an Avoid on all of the talk groups you don't want to listen to. Then write your setting changes to the scanner.
 

joeuser

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It doesn't work the way you want. It works the way it works. So you need to figure out is that going to work for you? You can defeat my argument by simply showing me a similar scanner, with similar feature set, doing what you expect the 436 to do & does not.
 

radioroo

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When listening to trunked system, you don't listen to a "channel", you listen to a "talkgroup". A trunked system has a primary and alternate control frequency, and a pool of talk frequencies. When a user keys their mic, their radio transmits its user ID to the system. The system then picks an available talk frequency for that transmission, and sends out a notification on the control channels that talkgroup X should listen to talk frequency Y. The voice transmission is then forwarded from the user's radio to frequency Y.

This cycle repeats every time a user keys their mic, and the frequency chosen can be different every time a user keys their mic, depending on how many users are trying to talk at once, and how many talk frequencies are available. If you program a talk frequency into your scanner as a normal frequency, you'll get a random mix of traffic, depending on which talkgroup transmissions happen to ger routed to that frequency. If it's the last frequency on the system's list, you may not hear anything, unless every other talk frequency happens to be in use already.

What you want to do is go into the Sentinel database, look up the trunked system you want to monitor, and set an Avoid on all of the talk groups you don't want to listen to. Then write your setting changes to the scanner.
Thank you. This was the most informative and educational post in the thread. I really appreciate you taking the time to explain how the trunking technology works. I had my mind stuck in the analogue way of doing things which is why I was having a hard time understanding why I could not store channels the same way I did on conventional systems. Again thanks a lot.
 

lacadien72

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I also suggest that you create one or many favorite lists with only what you want to listen, instead of monitoring the Full Database. Loading the Full Database takes a few seconds each time you power on your scanner (you mentioned in one of your first thread about the fact it take a very long time to boot up). The only time I am personally using the Full Database is when I travel.

So for example, let say you live in the Thunder Bay area, and the talk group you want to listen is in the Bell Fleetnet trunked system. In Sentinel, open up Ontario => Thunder Bay District, and right-click "Bell Fleetnet". Select Append Favorites Lists... You will have the choice to append to one of your existing favorite list, or to create a new one. Once done, follow jonwienke instructions on how to disable (avoid) the talk groups you don't want to listen to. You can also avoid departments instead of avoiding every talk groups in a department. And you can avoid sites far away from your location, but be very careful not to avoid a site near your location.

If you really want to monitor the Full Database instead of your own favorite(s) list(s), I suggest that you turn on Use Location Control. And I suggest you disable the "Nationwide Systems" you don't want to scan. Go in Menu => Set Scan Selection => Set Nationwide Systems. This is on a 536HP, I'm not sure it is the exact same on your 436HP.

Hope this help!
 
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AC2OY

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Modern technology is fun isn't it?!.....don't feel bad slow down,read,and watch UPman's you tube videos,they helped me a lot and trust me I'm still just crawling.
 

jonwienke

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Thank you. This was the most informative and educational post in the thread. I really appreciate you taking the time to explain how the trunking technology works. I had my mind stuck in the analogue way of doing things which is why I was having a hard time understanding why I could not store channels the same way I did on conventional systems. Again thanks a lot.
You're welcome.

One advantage to a trunked system is that the scanner only has to monitor a site's control channel when waiting for a transmission. When the scanner sees a transmission, it switches to the talk frequency until the transmission ends. So you can monitor more stuff without bogging the scanner down looking through a large number of talk channels.
 

joeuser

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Its also increased what I can listen to. With VHF I rarely would get neighboring counties, now I get more than I ever have before. Its great!
 

radioroo

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Here's a quick update on this: I've been playing with this for over a week now and thanks to the push from some guys here I got deep into programming via Sentinel and created a very useful set of favourite lists which I can quickly turn on and off when I want to isolate a certain area of interest on the fly. I realize that to get the most from this device when travelling I need to forward plan what I want to monitor and program my favourites lists accordingly before I leave. And this takes time. It's not what I hoped for but it's something. I also really like the favourites list now for home monitoring. It's fantastic. For travelling the forward planning and programming in advance thing is not that useful unless I know where I'm going to be and have time to program the scanner in advance.

Thanks to those who helped me out.
 

UPMan

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I would make a combination of things. For towns you are simply passing by on the way to somewhere else, use the main database...it is complete and will catch enough to be interesting. If you are only going to spend 5 minutes in an agency's jurisdiction, then it doesn't make sense to spend 15 minutes making a custom favorites list :) .

I just drove from DFW to Pueblo, CO, then to Taos, NM, Santa Fe, NM, and back to DFW. Scanned entirely from the main database and was plenty fine enough for me. I'm sure I missed some things, but not that I noticed. I did hear an APB out on someone who had shot/killed 5 people in Albuquerque and was likely headed to El Paso while I was in Santa Fe.

Had I been planning to stay very long in any of those locales, I might have spent some time making a more targeted FL.

ADDED: Oh, I used a GPS accessory to control the location setting, so all channel switching was fully automatic.
 

JamesO

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Can we consider adding the 2 letter State designator in the descriptions?

Sure would make understanding what you are listening to when using the GPS option and on the road.
 
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