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Posted: 5/21/2005 8:59:41 PM EDT
I don't know anything about police scanners/radios, so I was hoping someone could recommend me one. I'd just be using it at my desk just to listen for fun. I don't need anything fancy, just something that will pick up the local frequencies. Preferably cheap. Thanks.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 9:09:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By niceguymr:
I don't know anything about police scanners/radios, so I was hoping someone could recommend me one. I'd just be using it at my desk just to listen for fun. I don't need anything fancy, just something that will pick up the local frequencies. Preferably cheap. Thanks.





You can get a uniden cheap usually from ebay.
UNIDEN


DRUFF

Link Posted: 5/21/2005 9:11:18 PM EDT
Radio Shack..Ive seen 20 channel scanners for pretty cheap.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 9:13:05 PM EDT
Uniden is great. The Bearcat series is top of the line.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 9:18:15 PM EDT
Do you know what kind of system your local deparments use? Scanning a trunked 800 system is not cheap, and it seems like that is where most urban departments are headed.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 9:27:51 PM EDT
If you just want one by the desk for fun you could search google and see if someone streams any of the police/fire/emt bands in your area. For example scancobb.com streams the police frequencies for cobb county Georgia online so I can listen for free to the stuff in my county. There are a pretty good bit of people doing that these days. It’s free and you don’t have to setup any equipment.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 12:13:43 AM EDT
Depends on your location, but most cities are switching to digital trunked systems. That means no analog scanner will even pick them up, let alone follow them. You need a digital scanner that follow the several trunked systems, like APCO-25 from Motorola, and a few others both analog and digital. Some scanners don't follow all systems types and the new digital stuff is new and pricey!
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 1:11:26 AM EDT
Definitely Uniden. I have had a bearcat for almost ten years and I have had great fun with it. Its fun to be nosey!
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 1:27:23 AM EDT
firts let us know exactly what departments or other activities you are interested in listening to, then we can make a reccomendation.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 7:52:25 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Garand_Shooter:
firts let us know exactly what departments or other activities you are interested in listening to, then we can make a reccomendation.



I would mostly be using it to listen in on Dade/Broward County Police Depts and I suppose I'd also use it when I go to the NASCAR events at Homestead Speadway.

I prefer one of those handheld types (as opposed to a desktop unit) so I can carry it around the house.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 8:07:40 AM EDT
I just laid one of my Bearcat scanners to rest after 16 years of heavy use in my truck. My other 4 are Radio shack and they do just as good a job.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 8:35:01 AM EDT
www.radioshack.com/product.asp?catalog%5Fname=CTLG&category%5Fname=CTLG%5F008%5F009%5F010%5F003&product%5Fid=20%2D525

This one will do all you need it to, and as an added plus if you buy ti at the local Radio Shack they will programm most of what you wnat to hear into it, saving you a few hours of frustration.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 8:37:10 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Garand_Shooter:
www.radioshack.com/product.asp?catalog%5Fname=CTLG&category%5Fname=CTLG%5F008%5F009%5F010%5F003&product%5Fid=20%2D525

This one will do all you need it to, and as an added plus if you buy ti at the local Radio Shack they will programm most of what you wnat to hear into it, saving you a few hours of frustration.



Radio Shack also sells a book with everyones frequencies in it. I have it somewhere here in the garage. It has EVERYONE in it, including airports, news stations, even Playboy has a freq in there.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 9:25:06 AM EDT
With everyone using cordless phones these days you can find out lots of stuff on the 900 band, and the old 43.72 to 46.97 bands.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 9:29:55 AM EDT
My old Bearcat has really served me well. Tough unit. I would like to get a one to listen to the police here which uses a trunked system, but I can't justify it right now.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 9:43:12 AM EDT
What about "trunking" scanners? What are they and do I need on of those?
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 9:53:24 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/22/2005 9:53:46 AM EDT by cmjohnson]
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 9:53:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/22/2005 9:54:10 AM EDT by jvic]
From Uniden:

Conventional scanning is a simple concept. You enter a radio frequency in your scanner's memory, which is used by someone you want to monitor. For example, the police in your area may broadcast on 460.500 MHz, the fire department on 154.445 MHz, the highway department on 37.900 MHz, etc. So when your scanner stops on a frequency, you usually know who it is, and more importantly, you can stop on a channel and listen to an entire conversation. This type of scanning is simple and easy to set up and find.

As the demand for public communications has increased, many public radio users don't have enough frequencies. To use a limited amount of radio frequency efficiently, trunking radio systems were developed.

In a trunked radio system, which contains up to 28 different frequencies, radio users are divided into groups, often called talk groups, and these talk groups are assigned specific IDs. When someone in a talk group uses their radio, a brief burst of data is broadcast before each transmission. The trunking system computer uses this data to temporarily assign each radio in a talk group to an available frequency. If the group using a frequency stops broadcasting or pauses between replies for a few seconds, they are removed from the frequency so another talk group can use it.

Sharing of the available public service frequencies, or trunking, allows cities, counties, or other agencies to accommodate hundreds of users with relatively few frequencies. Following a conversation on a trunked system using a conventional scanner is difficult, if not impossible. Because when there is a short break during the conversation you are monitoring, it is possible that the talk group will be assigned to a completely different frequency in the trunked system. This type of scanning is more complex. Trunk tracking technology solves this problem and allows you to monitor the entire conversation; no matter how many times the system changes frequencies.

Link Posted: 5/22/2005 1:22:41 PM EDT
ALLLLLLLRIGHTY...!!

now that we know which scanner to buy or not buy, how about a good website that we can go to, to get the Freqs. ??
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 1:27:36 PM EDT
you are making a mistake if you do not get the radio shack pro-95 dual trunking.

I have been looking at scanners for years, and finally got this one. check the survival forum, you will find a great consesus there.

txl
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 1:47:34 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Buttplate:
ALLLLLLLRIGHTY...!!

now that we know which scanner to buy or not buy, how about a good website that we can go to, to get the Freqs. ??



You can search on the FCC's website several diferent ways, since all frequinces are public information.

Or you can google the city, state, and add the wor frequence (spelled correctly) as someone as probably already compiled a list.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 2:32:32 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/22/2005 2:33:34 PM EDT by Misery]
I got to tell you guys, if you buy anything that doesn't support digital communications, particularly digital trunking, you're wasting your money. Here in Phoenix, along with all the other surrounding cities, almost all departments are digital or making the transition. Fire, city gov, police, and many other places are digital. A standard trunking scanner will not even pick these up. It must say "Digital Trunking", or it's analog only. The Uniden scanners have been more or less shit in the last few years. The new digital trunking scanners from Uniden have mixed reviews, but most people are liking the Radio Shack version(s) much better. Here is the only full featured digital and analog trunking scanner RS has: www.radioshack.com/product.asp?catalog%5Fname=CTLG&category%5Fname=CTLG%5F008%5F009%5F010%5F003&product%5Fid=20%2D526

Unfortunately, it's 500 dollars. Uniden has been making more of them, but be sure to look around on the net for some reviews and dicussion before buying one. Their first two were not good at all. In fact, the Uniden digitals I've looked at were more money, as they require you to purchase an expensive card to make it digital compatible. The RS has much better speaker/sound quality. Plus it can be flashed for updates, and it auto-tunes the digital signals. The Uniden I'm aware of makes you tune each frequency manually and it's a pain in the ass. By tuning the digital signal, I mean the people sound like robots if not tuned just right. Also, digital mode is really annoying sometimes because some people are real quiet and others are real loud, so you're always messing with the volume.

Bottom line, you live in a big city, most agencies are gonna be digital now or real soon. Even the airport here, KPHX, is running trunked for ground ops. We even have a small Indian community with one digital frequency for police, yes 1!
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 2:35:45 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/22/2005 2:37:36 PM EDT by Misery]
Also, the RS scanner guide is crap IMO. This place sell the ultimate scanner book, which includes a ton more than the RS book. www.scannerstuff.com/

They don't have the enitre U.S. I thought they did, but the ones they do sell are 100 times better than RS.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 2:57:33 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/22/2005 3:01:21 PM EDT by submoa1]
There was a thread in the survival forum a few months ago that had a huge thread on Federal Agency Radio freqs.



Link Posted: 5/22/2005 3:03:20 PM EDT
Purchased a Pro95 from Radio Shack and don't see myself getting anything better for awhile.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 3:45:42 PM EDT
radioreference.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewforum&f=12

If your area is not digital then you have two choices: Radio Shack Pro-95 or the Uniden 246T.
For digital its the Radio Shack Pro-96 or the upcoming Uniden 396D or the Uniden 296T.

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