Friday, June 26, 2009

3D Scanner Images: Now you can view from multiple perspectives before you buy!

After being in the business of customer service for over 30 years, we are very familiar with all the common questions that you may have regarding your scanner. We now have a solution to help you answer many of these questions on your own without digging through mounds of text or contacting a scanner expert.

By recently upgrading from 2 dimensional images to 3 dimensional "circle around" models of our scanners, you can now answer many specific product questions by looking at the new 3 dimensional image accessible via the scanner product page.

Click here to view the BCT15 Scanner in 3D!

This revolutionary technology allows you to examine the range of depth and points of view of our most popular Uniden Bearcat, RadioShack, and GRE models. With video control capability, you can now dramatically expand your viewpoint using the zoom feature, as well as pause the rotating image at any point in time. This new feature will not only allow you to view a scanner from a completely new perspective, but will also help you to make more informative decisions before you buy without having to read through pages of text or contacting a service rep.

The 3D feature is currently available on 14 models and with in a few months it will be available on 12 more. We hope you enjoy it and we welcome your comments.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Hello from Tokyo

By Richard Barnett

My meetings in Tokyo are finished so I spent the morning in the incredible electronics capital of Japan, if not the world, Akihabara. Any and every electronic gadget and gizmo is on display in dozens, if not hundreds, of stores, including of course scanners. While the legality of owning and operating scanners in Japan is of some question, there's no doubt you can buy them, but not the usual brands. You won't see Uniden-Bearcat scanners on display here for example. Why that is I don't know. But you can find ICOM, AOR, Alinco, and some unusual brands that have never made it to US shores such as Maruhama. While the Maruhama brand looks interesting you can't find an English manual for it and of course it's clear it isn't capable of trunking or digital, it's more akin to a basic scanner, possibly with some additional bands.

What's most amazing about Akihabara are the mini-malls of stores, no bigger than half a vendor's cart, where people specialize in capacitors, or switches or some such thing. It's incredible. There's aisles and aisles of these stalls and you get the feeling they've been handed down from one family member to another, selling extremely specialized equipment in maybe a 8' by 5' space. If you're into unique parts and equipment this is the place to come, although you should go with someone who's fluent in the language if possible. I'm sure there are many pictures online of Akihabara and these stalls -- it's worth a look.

On to Hong Kong!

Rich Barnett

Friday, June 5, 2009

Testing the Austin Spectra Mobile Antenna

By Jonathan Higgins

Hello Everyone,

I would like to introduce myself. I’m Jonathan Higgins, lead on-site "scanner expert”… I’m happy to be a part of the Scanner Master team for over a year now, with almost 20 years of scanning experience under my belt. Over the years, communication systems have made a lot of advances with trunking and digital communications. My first scanner was a Radio Shack Realistic PRO-2014, a 50 channel scanner. Some of my favorite scanners are the Uniden BC246T, BCD396XT, BC780XLT, BCD996T and the GRE PSR-500.

Along with Rich, I will be posting information and advice on our Scanner Master Blog.

Testing the
Austin Spectra Mobile Antenna

The Spectra is 33 inches tall and its tuned for all 4 public safety bands:

  • VHF Low Band (30-50MHz)
  • VHF High band (150-174 MHz)
  • UHF (430-512 MHz)
  • 800MHz (806-896 MHz)

    The coax cable and mounting gear are sold separately. I used the 5” NMO Mag Mount for my test. The scanner used was the Uniden BCD996T …So off I went on a road trip!

    In Massachusetts, most of the public safety is using VHF High Band or UHF. I was amazed by the reception. I was able to pick up UHF systems for 10 to 15 miles away without a problem, and as for the VHF, about 15+ miles away. In Massachusetts, the State Police are on an analog 800MHz trunking system. I was able to pick up the local site with ease and neighboring sites at times. I found that the height of the Spectra really brings in the VHF Low Band without a problem. Overall, a great antenna! It’s a true performer on all bands!

    Check out the many mounting options we have available for this antenna:
  • 5" NMO Mag Mount
  • NMO Hole Mount
  • NMO Mirror Mount
  • NMO Trunk Lip Mount

    Austin Antenna, a locally based company right here in New England, has been in business for the last 25 years. We carry the full Austin Antenna scanner product line; the Ferret, the Condor and the Spectra.
  • Thursday, June 4, 2009

    New GPS Unit in Stock

    We now have in stock a new GPS receiver unit, a high-quality Garmin which has been customized for special applications such as GPS scanning (requiring a separate power input). The Garmin is more expensive than the previous GPS unit we had been selling but the older model is no longer available. Garmin of course has long been a player in the GPS industry and their products are top-notch. In the future we may try find a less expensive option but we wouldn't expect it to have the satellite capture speed and accuracy of the Garmin. For more details or to order the Garmin click here.

    GPS scanning is a great feature. With it your scanner can automatically enable and disable systems based on your location as you drive. It save so much hassle trying to remember which systems to turn on/off while you're on the move (which can also be dangerous if you're actually driving and programming at the same time). The GPS feature is available on the BCT15 and BCD996T base/mobile models and the new BC346XT and BCD396XT portables, all only from Uniden. These new models have enhanced GPS features such as a much wider and more flexible range that you can set and you can also program GPS coordinates down to the Group level.

    It is extremely complex to program all this GPS longitude/latitude data unless you have excellent programming software such as ARCXT, truly a must for basic or advanced programming with GPS in the 346/396XT or ARC15 or ARC996 for the base/mobile models. This program has a unique feature to instantly find correct coordinates for cities and towns anywhere in the country.