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  #141 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 2:47 PM
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Thanks for the report - it's appreciated.

Video reports for the win though - that way I can judge for myself. Some people seem to have lower tolerance levels for decode issues.

Plus, 75.7% of statistics are made up on the spot... :^)
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  #142 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 2:52 PM
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Originally Posted by sixtytwo View Post
In regards to the block of text above - I've used a variety of ducks, mobile and base antennas on my commercial radios. Heck, even tried a VHF duck.

No differences. 100% decode, 100% of the time.

People - it's not the damn antenna, or where you're located.

It's the receiver.
Really!!!! I Disagree, Here is my HP-1 on EBRCS Simulcast.

HomePatrol-1 with Comet Miracle Baby antenna P25 - YouTube
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  #143 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 4:14 PM
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I'm going to make one last comment about the antenna's and these scanners and then this topic should get back on point; or perhaps we can continue this in another thread.

You guys are missing the point, so let me lay it out this way. You're Right, it is the receiver; however... Remember, simulcast trunking systems are all about timing and RSSI values to the subscriber units. Commercial radios, such as the Motorola XTS, APX, Harris, etc. support reading RSSI values and can manage the timing vs signal needed in a given location; scanners do not have this architecture; they hear EVERYTHING from ALL sites simultaneously; that's going to confuse the front end of the receiver because it sees these as multiple transmissions to decode, one stronger than the other, but never-the-less, they're going to mix in the receiver and cause distortion. With scanners, it's a delicate balancing game of signal quantity vs quality. In a simulcast system, you want an antenna that does not have too much gain; you're trying to limit just how many of the simulcast sites you're hearing at one time. If you take a triangle, which many simulcast system use, and you, the scanner user are standing in the middle with a high gain antenna; you're going to receive ALL THREE of the sites at the same level on your scanner; this is going to confuse the scanners decoder, rather, if you took into account your individual topography, then choose the appropriate antenna for that area, you'd likely see a noticeable different. VHF is an exception because of it's propagation characteristics, plus you do not have mixing with cellular and many other services in high saturation; likely you're only contending with the simulcast sites and with VHF, they're usually further apart as well and have varying down tilt on the antenna atop the buildings and towers.

In anycase, it's been proven many times over that choosing the best antenna for YOU'RE situation is the best bet, and only YOU know the topography of the area in which you live; someone 3000 miles away can only tell you what's on a map. You'll need to be the one to test various antennas vs. reception and what may work for you, may not work for others, as all simulcast systems have some level of customization to them. Point in case, look at the guy using a Miracle Baby antenna; that antenna's basically a dummy load, yet he has great reception and great decoding ability on the Homepatrol. I've got the BCD396XT/996XT and have NEVER had any simulcast issues with them, same goes for my older BCD396/996 units; and that's because I chose the appropriate antennas, feed lines, etc for my area. When traveling, I take along a few antennas; just in case. The standard Uniden Rubber Ducky, 1/4-wave Larsen 800 MHz. antenna, 1/2-wave dipole Larsen 800 MHz. antenna, Radio Shack 800MHz. antenna and a Diamond RH-77CA for VHF-Lo, VHF-Hi, and UHF work.

Okay, now back on topic. All I suggesting is that you give it a try and see what works for you. For the guy in Arizona that just posted that video; I'd love to see you're BCD396XT and the BCD436HP with the stock Uniden antenna in the same location you were in on that same system.
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  #144 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 4:16 PM
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Sixty-Two is correct. A receiver must use the I & Q demodulated signals from the receiver's IF and not the baseband audio from the discriminator to properly decode the QPSK waveform for linear simulcast Phase I and 2 systems. This has been discussed several times here on the forums. It's discussed in the following thread:

http://forums.radioreference.com/dig...iscussion.html

And here's a direct question about this issue to UPMan from Max:
http://forums.radioreference.com/uni...ml#post2106373

Joe

PS I apologize - I posted this reply while W2GLD was posting his saying to get on topic.



Quote:
Originally Posted by sixtytwo View Post
I think some people are missing some key issues in this thread.

If Uniden has indeed fixed simulcast reception, then the entirety of the antenna discussion is simply moot.

That is, a simple rubber duck should work.

No moving of the radio, no finding a null, no swinging a beam around, nothing.

I have commercial gear, and none of these things are ever issues. Ever.

There's also a long-running idea here that simulcast "interference" is to blame, people should stop with that idea because it's demonstrably false. The modulation technique used in P25 simulcast requires the I and Q branches to be used, and not just a tap from the FM discriminator.

So, enough with the antenna discussion - just use the built in antenna or a duck and let's see what we get.
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Last edited by jcardani; 01-27-2014 at 4:19 PM..
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  #145 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 4:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmdcomm View Post
HUGE IMPROVEMENT OVER ANY OTHER SCANNER!!!

We have tested on the following systems.
City of Houston Phase-II TDMA Simulcast - Perfect everytime while stationary, about 95% of the time while driving.

TxWARN P-25 Phase-I Montgomery Co & Houston Simulcast Sites - Perfect everytime while stationary, about 95% of the time while driving.

Both of these tests done with supplied BNC antenna inside a Suburban. When using a 7/800Mhz digital mobile external antenna, it gets even better!!!!

GREAT PRODUCT!!!!! I will not say these scanners are as good as a real radio yet, but HUGE improvements over any GRE or Uniden scanner...
What scanner(s)? 436 or 536?
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  #146 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 5:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sixtytwo View Post
I think some people are missing some key issues in this thread.

If Uniden has indeed fixed simulcast reception, then the entirety of the antenna discussion is simply moot.

That is, a simple rubber duck should work.

No moving of the radio, no finding a null, no swinging a beam around, nothing.

I have commercial gear, and none of these things are ever issues. Ever.

There's also a long-running idea here that simulcast "interference" is to blame, people should stop with that idea because it's demonstrably false. The modulation technique used in P25 simulcast requires the I and Q branches to be used, and not just a tap from the FM discriminator.

So, enough with the antenna discussion - just use the built in antenna or a duck and let's see what we get.
I agree with your comments. Either Uniden completely slayed the simulcast dragon or they haven't. In my case, I monitor all sorts of stuff, not just P25 simulcast systems, and I'm not gonna be forced to use different scanners and antennas for non-simulcast and simulcast systems.
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  #147 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 5:14 PM
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All,

Since there is a lot of concern about my antenna selection, I took that out of the equation. Here is another video. Same location as previously, and same systems. I am using the stock antenna here.

BCD436HP - Phoenix RWC Simulcast A & B Sites - YouTube

Again, better than the XT, but still choppy audio and high error rate.
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  #148 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 6:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cellphone View Post
All,

Since there is a lot of concern about my antenna selection, I took that out of the equation. Here is another video. Same location as previously, and same systems. I am using the stock antenna here.

BCD436HP - Phoenix RWC Simulcast A & B Sites - YouTube

Again, better than the XT, but still choppy audio and high error rate.

Wow, looks like the 800MHz antenna is the way to go out here. That was a bit disappointing, but not entirely unexpected - this system is pure hell to monitor.

I'll still be posting my side by side comparison, but it looks like the verdict is already in - simulcast distortion is still an issue for folks in Phoenix. I'll be working on ways to mitigate the problem when I get my radio next week (finally! next week!) and if I'm successful, I'll be glad to share that with the group.

Thank you for sharing this video with us - much appreciated sir!
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  #149 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 6:19 PM
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Arrow BCD536 Scanner & Antenna Comparison Bad Simulcast

New BCD536HP Video Recorded In Port Richmond Section Of Philadelphia - Our RF Hell

PSR-800 / PSR-500 / Uniden 996 / Stock Antenna / 3dB Gain 800MHZ Antenna / (Gain-**) Race Antenna

Ultimate Uniden BCD536HP Simulcast & Scanner Comparison Video - YouTube

Last edited by bberns22; 01-27-2014 at 6:20 PM.. Reason: link
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  #150 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 6:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bberns22 View Post
New BCD536HP Video Recorded In Port Richmond Section Of Philadelphia - Our RF Hell

PSR-800 / PSR-500 / Uniden 996 / Stock Antenna / 3dB Gain 800MHZ Antenna / (Gain-**) Race Antenna

Ultimate Uniden BCD536HP Simulcast & Scanner Comparison Video - YouTube
Best by far with the video. Look's like the 536 is doing a much better job. How did you find it to work while driving around? Does it go back to being like your sound on the original radios?

Thank you for this.
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  #151 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 6:37 PM
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Nice work bberns22, the 536 was not perfect, but sounds great.
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  #152 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 6:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LZ56 View Post
I agree with your comments. Either Uniden completely slayed the simulcast dragon or they haven't. In my case, I monitor all sorts of stuff, not just P25 simulcast systems, and I'm not gonna be forced to use different scanners and antennas for non-simulcast and simulcast systems.
Well said. The simple answer is that the problem is not fixed.

I was very, very hopeful, but after several days of testing on the Central Ohio Interoperable Radio System (COIRS) I have found the garbling and generally unreliable decoding to still be present, just not as bad.

I will still enjoy these new scanners, but not as much as I had hoped.
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  #153 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 7:03 PM
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Really disappointed with all these reports of still garbled transmissions. Coming from an HP-1 with garbled transmissions, I may just wait to see what Whistler comes out with. Paying $500-$600 for another scanner that just marginally improves things is too much to spend.
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  #154 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 7:21 PM
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Well bberns22's recording of Phily PD sounds very similar to the local system I monitor, Camden County Fire and EMS, Camden County Public Safety Trunking System, Camden County, New Jersey - Scanner Frequencies. All though his audio is not as bassy or muffled as I seem to here. When I get home from work tonight I'l try to get a recording and post it.
Well I finally figured out how to post a video on YouTube. Here is what I hear on my BCD536HP. I don't know if it is a problem with "Simulcast" or TDMA decoding of the system. The system is the Camden County, NJ Public Safety P25 Phase II system.

Camden County P25 audio - YouTube
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  #155 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 7:25 PM
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Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (Linux; U; Android 4.1.2; en-us; LG-LS720 Build/JZO54K) AppleWebKit/534.30 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Mobile Safari/534.30)

It receives signal nicely.?I do notice low audio at times. Is that the muffled sound you mentioned?

Last edited by policefreak; 01-27-2014 at 7:32 PM..
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  #156 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2014, 7:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by policefreak View Post
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (Linux; U; Android 4.1.2; en-us; LG-LS720 Build/JZO54K) AppleWebKit/534.30 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Mobile Safari/534.30)

It receives signal nicely.?I do notice low audio at times. Is that the muffled sound you mentioned?
Yes. I have turned on the attenuator to see if that will improve the audio. I guess I may be "old fashion" though. I'm used to listening to analog audio and this is my first experience with digital audio.
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Old 01-27-2014, 7:42 PM
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I sure hope someone in Atlanta gets one soon. I'm very interested in how it performs. So far all the results have been great.
I am in Atlanta, and I am utterly and thoroughly amazed by the performance of my new 436 and 536 scanners. I received both on Saturday, and have been running them virtually non-stop since, both in fixed locations and in transit. I have been monitoring DeKalb County, Atlanta, Gwinnett County, Cobb County, and Hall County CQPSK (LSM) Phase 1 P25 simulcast systems with incredible results. Excellent signal, excellent audio quality, including from well known locations where I had terrible results on the 396, 996 and HP1 (including my house).

My 396 and HP1 with a great 800 MHz antenna had terrible results trying to monitor DeKalb on the second floor of my house in DeKalb (Tucker area). The 536 and 436 are working terrific throughout my house - even in the basement - with stock antennas. Systems I used to receive poorly on the 396, 996 and HP1 I receive very well on the 436 and 536, and systems I used to receive ok on the 396, 996 and HP1 I receive perfectly on the 436 and 536.

Used both on the commute from Tucker to Midtown and back today, and could not believe how solid and reliable the signal and decode were on the Atlanta and DeKalb systems throughout the commute.

There is a second 436 and at least one (if not two) more 536s in my near term future.

Dan
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Old 01-27-2014, 7:45 PM
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On the antennas - those who are familiar with the simulcast problem know that even with the older radios, experimenting with different size antennas or directional antennas can in some cases improve results. The hope was that could be eliminated with the x36 radios.

I checked emissions codes for the Philly system and the Louisville system. It looks to me like the Louisville system is an LSM simulcast while the Philly system is another flavor of simulcast. I didn't check any others discussed here.
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Old 01-27-2014, 7:46 PM
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When I get my 436(hopefully friday) I will post decodes of Cleveland P25(simulcast)
Greater Cleveland Radio Communications Network Trunking System, Cleveland, Ohio - Scanner Frequencies
comparing the decode to DSD using 2 RTL-SDR dongles.
I would be surprised if the 436 has any issues at all, my decodes in DSD are nearly perfect already.
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Old 01-27-2014, 7:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanRollman View Post
I am in Atlanta, and I am utterly and thoroughly amazed by the performance of my new 436 and 536 scanners. I received both on Saturday, and have been running them virtually non-stop since, both in fixed locations and in transit. I have been monitoring DeKalb County, Atlanta, Gwinnett County, Cobb County, and Hall County CQPSK (LSM) Phase 1 P25 simulcast systems with incredible results. Excellent signal, excellent audio quality, including from well known locations where I had terrible results on the 396, 996 and HP1 (including my house).

My 396 and HP1 with a great 800 MHz antenna had terrible results trying to monitor DeKalb on the second floor of my house in DeKalb (Tucker area). The 536 and 436 are working terrific throughout my house - even in the basement - with stock antennas. Systems I used to receive poorly on the 396, 996 and HP1 I receive very well on the 436 and 536, and systems I used to receive ok on the 396, 996 and HP1 I receive perfectly on the 436 and 536.

Used both on the commute from Tucker to Midtown and back today, and could not believe how solid and reliable the signal and decode were on the Atlanta and DeKalb systems throughout the commute.

There is a second 436 and at least one (if not two) more 536s in my near term future.

Dan
Great to hear Dan. Waiting to receive the 436 this week from Hamstation. I live in Coweta County and was unable to even receive the county sheriff on the WARRS system with the HP1. Hoping for the best with the 436 later this week.
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