North Hollywood Shootout Police Radio Calls (And, they were analog!)
News & Reports
11/5/2004 NOTE: Due to the increasing number of digital scanners now on the market, I will no longer be updating scanner model information this web page. Check with Radio Shack, Uniden or GRE America for current information. I'll be leaving this page online for the foreseeable future, as a sort of "historical overview" of the first generation of digital scanners. Thanks to the more than 60,000 folks who've dropped in here since early 2002. -Harry
Radio Shack Announces CPQSK Modulation upgrade for Pro-96
Also improved reception on weak C4FM signals:
site details on the new 296D & 796D digital scanners:
BC296D Handheld and BC796D Base/Mobile
Pro-96 Documents from the FCC website:
Attestation Statement - (or, "it
won't tune in cellphones")
Owner's Manual - .pdf document
External Pictures - .pdf document
FCC Authorization - .html file
I realize this is VERY SLOPPY, but I've converted the 120-page manual to a straight text (.txt) document, for folks without access to a .pdf viewer (e.g. WebTV). Perhaps someone can do a better job. Here it is for now
Trouble getting your Digital
Signals tuned in with your 250D or 785D??
Try these steps.
Watch this space for
news of any LAPD internet feeds...
For dealers & prices online, see Tracy's "Pricewatch" Page
Check out the reports on the StrongSignals.net message board
12/23/02: Uniden issues New "Fact
Sheet" on 12/20/2002
(not much new that I can see... and release date is still given as "January, 2003")
12/6/02: Scott Halligan has perhaps the
first real "review" of these scanners in action
Here's Scott's report, on the StrongSignals page
L.A.P.D. Fans: Yes, these scanners WILL decode LAPD's frequencies as long as you get the "APCO card" (BCi25D) too. See this and this.
11/12/02: Owners' Manuals Online !
BC785D Manual (2.273MB) - 100 Pages (.pdf format)
BC250D ManualOwner's Manual (2.01MB) - 110 Pages (.pdf format)
and, from the
manuals (manual page 8, .pdf document page 12):
11/9/2002: Perhaps THIS, from Uniden's flyer to
distributors, clarifies the continuing saga of the 9600
baud rate issue (emphasis is mine)...
My interpretation is that they will not FOLLOW trunking systems that use the 9600 baud rate for the control channel. They will, however "decode" the digital audio so you can monitor whatever frequency you're stopped on. They will both follow and decode 3600-baud trunking systems, and will decode conventional APCO P-25 digital systems (such as LAPD's) where "trunking" and "control channels" are not an issue. Please post any comments here, to the "digital-scanning" yahoogroup. (I have no connection with the "digital-scanning" yahoogroup, but it seems to be the largest of a number of parallel email lists for this topic.)
11/8/2002: More ("slight") delays
has added more info & pics for the 250D (
here and here ) and
the 785D ( here and here ) to their website... including a new "Available in January" line. Things seem to have again slipped slightly since last week. They have a pop-up page on the BCi25D "APCO Card too. (Note that it says the card allows monitoring "...trunked (analog control channel, 3600 Baud and digital control channel, 9600 Baud)." Are they trying to confuse us or what?
fans: the 785D picture, when enlarged, shows this display...
has been reported to possibly be the new dispatch
frequency for Newton (& Hollenbeck?) Division, though
it doesn't seem to be in use yet. On a recent weekday
afternoon & evening I detected NO transmissions at
all on that frequency, while Newton's "old"
frequency of 507.1875 maxxed out my counter... with
11/6/2002: Uniden Issues new "Fact Sheet" on their Digital Scanners, with new release date info
Click here for "all
browsers" version of the fact
- just images, no ".pdf"
10/30/2002: Here we go again!
The supporting documentation, photos and manual for the 250D all appears to be identical to that originally posted on September 30 (exactly a month ago) and linked to below, with these exceptions:
FCC's newest Grant of Equipment Authorization, ALSO dated October 30, 2002! (The government can work fast when they want to)
ALSO, check out the StrongSignals Webpage for possible new availability dates... already set back a bit from "November" but earlier than some OTHER rumors had them. < Sigh>
Hang on to your hats, kids (and maybe your money too??)
two Uniden Digital scanners will NOT handle the "APCO
Standard" 9600 baud rate for the control channel on
some "APCO" digital TRUNKED systems.
For more information, there are a BUNCH of fairly redundant hobbyist email lists out there discussing these new scanners, but a couple that seem to be the largest and most active lately are:
Finally, there is a "technical discussion group" for APCO/TIA Project 25 information, primarily for folks in the private and public land-mobile business. Even if you don't/can't contribute, their files and message archives are full of good stuff at
and also take a look at
The 250D "Preliminary" Manual!
If you don't have the Adobe Acrobat viewer for these ".pdf" files, here are some VERY rough translations:
Stand by for more
info and links...
As of Friday evening 9/27/2002 , two new documents have appeared on the FCC "Equipment Authorization" site in connection with Uniden's forthcoming digital scanners:
The "Grant" lists Uniden and a company called Timco Engineering, Inc of Newberry, FL. Timco Engineering is an FCC-designated "Telecommunications Certification Body" which does certification testing for a wide range of RF-emitting equipment. (On the first application only Uniden and "Uniden Corporation-Chiba" ? were listed)
There are no new "exhibits" or other descriptive information on the FCC site (yet), so it's not clear just what these documents signify. For example, perhaps the new Application & Grant cover the BC250D handheld. Of course it's the weekend, so probably no official word from anyone until next week.
I found a section in the FCC regulations that allows a company to apply for a "permissive change" in an existing equipment authorization without filing an entirely new authorization request. This applies when there are "modifications which degrade the performance characteristics" but the equipment still meets "the minimum requirements of the applicable rules." - 47CFR2.1043, FCC Equipment Authorization Procedures. It may be that the new documents reflect an application and grant for the BC250D handheld. I noticed that at least one large dealer today began advertising prices and accepting orders for the BC250D.
FCC Says BC250D has NOT
I didn't get into the issue of whether dealers in the U.S. may sell or offer for sale equipment that hasn't been type-accepted, or what - if any - penalties could be imposed for doing so.
RELEASE: SEPTEMBER 13, 2002
UNIDEN claims that the August 22 type-acceptance covers both models !
(though I've never seen one FCC authorization that covered two completely different models, base and handheld) Note, 10/30/2002: I TOLD you so!)
Radios are slated to ship in late November 2002
Dealers with 785D and 250D Information
"Grant of Equipment Authorization" (includes frequency ranges)
As it appears that some of the "BC785D" documents and images on the FCC site are from BC780 rather than the 785D or 250D, check back here periodically for updates, which I'll mark clearly.
UNIDEN'S APPLICATION FOR
For A "Trunk Tracking Digital Capable Scanner"
CLICK HERE FOR THE MANUAL ! But hold the phone, folks... glancing quickly through it, there's nothing about receiving digital.. looks like they're using the 780s manual template in place of the real thing. (pdf FORMAT - 2 MB)
Photo: Rear view (this IS the 785D)- jpg
"ID Label" proposal - pdf
Latest news from Grove's Site
Latest news from StrongSignals.net
---------- FROM JANUARY, 2002 ----------
down or click here for Monday afternoon update
Scroll down or click here for Tuesday afternoon updates
See photos (the 785 sure looks like a renovated 780XLT!) here
UNIDEN DEBUTS NEW APCO 25 DIGITAL SCANNER MODELS
Revised and formally issued on Wednesday January 9, 2002
Electronics Giant to Sell Software to Customize MonitoringExperience
Uniden lifts the curtain on its long-anticipated APCO 25 digital scanner models.
LAS VEGAS (January 8) Uniden America Corporation today unveiled its new digital scanner line for 2002, including the consumer electronics leaders much-anticipated base and handheld APCO 25 digital scanning models. Speaking at CES, product manager Scott Carpenter showcased the new scanner products, underscoring the companys commitment to keeping its customers at the forefront of scanning technology. Our retailers have been pushing us for a Uniden APCO 25 product for months, and our new BC250D handheld and our BC785D base/mobile scanning unit represent the fulfillment of our promise, Carpenter said. With the ability to monitor conventional, trunked and APCO 25 conventional and trunked systems these models are state-of-the-art radio scanners.
According to Uniden representatives, the Bearcat BC250D and the Bearcat BC785D models, which are slated to hit shelves in late 2002, offer 1,100 channels, 10 banks and a frequency range of 25MHz 1300MHz. The BC250D comprises all of the features of Unidens market-leading BC780 XLT in a handheld model, plus adds APCO 25 capability and an additional 600 channels. Users of both models must purchase an APCO 25 card, the BCi25D, separately. Were pleased to be bringing these great Bearcat APCO 25 units to market, Carpenter said. We expect more big cities to migrate to the APCO 25 digital technology, like Los Angeles did this past year, to ensure agency interoperability among police, fire, EMTs and the like and we know news organizations, businesses and consumers will want to monitor their signals.
Uniden officials stressed that APCO 25 digital scanning technology simply gives users the ability to monitor the day-to-day activities and signals of standard city and government service departments but in no way allows users to monitor encrypted signals from national and local security organizations.
In a separate announcement Uniden also announced its plans to market its own easy-to-use scanner programming software, which it is demonstrating in its booth at this winters annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The software will allow the users of all Uniden scanners with data ports to easily program frequencies into the channels and banks of their scanner.
Uniden Uniden America Corporation: the North American subsidiary
of Japan based Uniden Corporation, manufactures and markets
wireless consumer electronic products including cordless
telephones, business telecommunications systems, multimedia
communications devices, scanner radios, CB radios, FRS, Marine
radios and other wireless personal communications products. Based
in Fort Worth, Texas, Uniden sells it products through dealers
and distributors throughout North, Central and South America.
|For information, please contact:|
More news and "specs"!
is further information about the scanners, obtained Monday 1/7/2002
from a Uniden insider courtesy of Marcel <Marcelrf@BELLSOUTH.NET >
?????= He will inquire
APCO P-25 digital voice trunking capability? YES
APCO P-25 digital voice conventional capability? YES
Ability to scan conventional digital, conventional analog, trunked analog, and trunked digital, and multiple different trunked systems ALL at the same time YES
APCO P-25 UNENCRYPTED Digital Voice (IMBE Vocoder) Demodulation to analog voice? YES
APCO P-25 UNENCRYPTED 9.6K baud trunking control channel operation YES
APCO P-25 UNENCRYPTED 3.6K baud trunking control channel operation YES
APCO P-25 Level III ENCRYPTED 3.6K baud trunking control channel operation NO
APCO P-25 Level III ENCRYPTED 9.6K baud trunking control channel operation NO
APCO P-25 UNENCRYPTED C4FM modulation ????
APCO P-25 UNENCRYPTED Phase II 6.25KHz CQPSK Modulation ????
APCO P-25 UNENCRYPTED Phase II 6.25KHz Channel Operation ?????
APCO P-25 UNENCRYPTED Phase II TDMA Modes ?????
OpenSky trunking capability NO
OpenSky UNENCRYPTED Digital Voice (AMBE Vocoder) Demodulation to analog voice NO
PL / DPL search & display YES
PL / DPL use per channel YES
Tuesday afternoon updates, January 8, 2002 - 2:10 pm PST
to a report by Norm "Mr. Scanner" Schrein at http://www.bearcat1.com/ces.htm, "Each
scanner will have a suggested retail price of $350.00
and will be available late in 2002." He also reports
that "the Bearcat APCO 25 digital card -- the BCi25D...will
be just over $300.00." The
units will receive analog, do trunk-tracking, etc right out of
the box, but if you need digital demodulation, you'll need the
Tuesday evening: a little price hike already...
"Spectron - Tom Walker" <email@example.com>
Sent: Tuesday, January 08, 2002 20:46
Subject: RE: Uniden scanners I am at CES and had the opportunity to talk to a Uniden Manager. Radio will be released end of 2002, desktop and handheld. Aproximate pricing is about $350 and a APCO-25 decoder card will add about $325-$350 to the price of thescanner.