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Scanner Virgin

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Scanner Virgin

Postby BodhiScan1234 » Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:45 pm

Hey Everyone!

I'm looking into buying a Police Scanner. I am in Ballarat, Victoria. I'm currently not sure whether I am going to buy a handheld, a base station, or one of each.
I don't exactly have a 'budget', but I'd like to start fairly small. Basically something with an array of features, to really experience what it's like to have a scanner, not just a webpage open. Once i've decided that I want to continue my scanning says, I will upgrade to another scanner.
My main concern is buying a scanner that wont work with my local police. I'm looking for some insight into what type of scanner I should buy, and maybe some recommendations about which model or brand to buy?

Thanks in advance!

Bodhi
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Re: Scanner Virgin

Postby VK3RX » Mon Nov 13, 2017 8:04 am

Bear in mind that like their metropolitan counterparts, country police will be moving from their current analogue unencrypted system to a digital encrypted system sometime next year.

That said, there is a lot of other stuff to listen to.

Basic scanners are usually capable of receiving analogue transmissions only. The more advanced models are capable of receiving both analogue and digital transmissions.

Although there are other brands, Uniden has a range - link below. The UBCD396XT is a discontinued model, but they are still available from various sources.

To receive the CFA and some other parties you will need a scanner capable of the APCO P25 digital mode. There are other digital modes, and the more advanced models are usually capable of receiving at least some of these other digital modes as well.

P25 has two modes, called Phase 1 and Phase 2. The CFA currently use Phase 1, but will in time be moving to Phase 2. The UBCD396XT is only capable of receiving Phase 1, so when the move happens you will need a Phase 2 capable scanner, like the UBCD325P2, UBCD436PT (which is the same model available to CFA members) or UBCD536PT.

Most sellers of new units pre-program their units with the frequencies of various state authorities, which would save you the trouble of doing so yourself. However this discovery and programming is part of the fun for most people, and sooner or later you will want to change or program in a new user anyway. There are many here who will be happy to assist and advise when you need to do that.

https://www.uniden.com.au/product-category/cb-radios-scanners/scanners/
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Re: Scanner Virgin

Postby BodhiScan1234 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 1:45 pm

Thanks so much for the informed reply!

So when Vic police move to digitally encrypted systems, does that mean there will be no way to listen in on those broadcasts? Or will people be able to decrypt it in a way so that we can hear them via the scanner?
A few other questions I have, if you can answer them!

1. Can a digital scanner pick up analogue signals too, or just digital?
2. Regarding the modes, how do you know what modes which scanners can receive?
And lastly, 3. Can scanner like the UBCD536PT, or other scanners that receive Phase 2, also receive phase 1 broadcasts? Or do you need 2 different scanners?

I’d also love to hear what scanners other people own, what you use them for and what you like about them.
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Re: Scanner Virgin

Postby VK3RX » Mon Nov 13, 2017 4:19 pm

So when Vic police move to digitally encrypted systems, does that mean there will be no way to listen in on those broadcasts?

Correct.

1. Can a digital scanner pick up analogue signals too, or just digital?

Yes, digital scanners can pick up analogue signals, as well as digital signals for the protocols the manufacturer has provided.

2. Regarding the modes, how do you know what modes which scanners can receive?

The scanner's specifications should state what modes and digital protocols it can receive, and feel free to ask here.

And lastly, 3. Can scanner like the UBCD536PT, or other scanners that receive Phase 2, also receive phase 1 broadcasts?

The 536PT and 436PT can receive both Phase 1 & 2. Others capable of Phase 2 can normally do the same. Again, it's something to check in the specifications.

I’d also love to hear what scanners other people own, what you use them for and what you like about them.

Other readers, post away :)
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Re: Scanner Virgin

Postby nirvana » Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:17 pm

I am a casual user from outer Ballarat and have used the analogue Bearcat ubc92xlt handheld and also have an old analogue Realistic homebase 20 channel which both still pick up local transmissions ,but are limited where i am located deep in the bush ,amongst the hills . I don`t have much money ,so they were cheap purchases and did the job for awhile.

I currently use a ubcd396xt ,which is great up this way. I have about 40 or 50 frequencies tuned into analogue and digital and the digital trunked transmission for the CFA that i get mainly from the tower at Cherry Tree in Linton , is as clear as a bell.
I can get the police on a handful of channels ,occasionally the DSE , Ambos and a heap of CFA channels ,which is primarily what i bought it for in the first place.

When the police go encrypted, you won`t be able to hear them at all. It will be illegal to do so .

The ubcd396xt is good value for money ,easy to use and a handy tool to have in the fire season. I live on the edge of 2 fire districts and it is handy to be able to listen to and monitor the firies from both districts when they roll up to a fire .
When you get a scanner, buy a better antenna. I got one for about $30 of the internet and it has improved the quality and distance over the stock standard one . I can get signals from Bendigo on a good night ,but not often .
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Re: Scanner Virgin

Postby BodhiScan1234 » Mon Nov 13, 2017 11:52 pm

Thanks for the opinions! May I ask where you bought your UBCD396XT from? Was it bought online, or in-store?

Thanks in advance!
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Re: Scanner Virgin

Postby nirvana » Tue Nov 14, 2017 10:09 am

Wiltronics have got them .Good people to deal with.
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Re: Scanner Virgin

Postby dags19 » Tue Nov 14, 2017 6:10 pm

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