Rail and Air Packages

Uniden BC125AT Railfan Scanner Package

Like watching trains? Scanner Master has put together the ultimate Railfan Scanner Package just for you. With the compact BC125AT handheld scanner, an antenna made specifically for the railroad band and the accessories needed to put it all together, the Scanner Master Railfan Package is ideal for the train enthusiast. | Read more

Uniden BC125AT Aviation Scanner Package

Like watching planes? Scanner Master has put together the ultimate Aviation Scanner Package just for you. With the compact BC125AT handheld scanner, an antenna made specifically for the aviation band and the accessories needed to put it all together, the Scanner Master Aviation Package is ideal for the aviation enthusiast. | Read more

Questions? We have answers!

Here are a few of the common questions we get here at ScannerMaster’s World Headquarters as well as the answers we provide. If your question isn’t listed please call us and ask.

Q: Do you have scanners that will allow me to hear Encrypted/Scrambled communications?

A: Nope! There are 2 reasons why we don’t sell scanners that work on encrypted channels. First of all it is illegal. Our people like sleeping in their own beds at night and not on cots at the county jail. Second, even if it were legal the technology just isn’t there to break modern encryption, especially on a device sold to the public.

Q: Do you sell scanners that can hear cell phones?

A: Nope, sorry, for the same reasons we do not sell encryption capable scanners, it is illegal and impractical. Years ago one could clip a diode and open certain scanners for the old analog cell phones but those days are long past.

Q: Can you tell me the frequency for my hometown police department?

A: Sure we can. You can also find the freqs at www.radioreference.com

Q: Are you guys the same guys at RadioReference? Broadcastify? Uniden? Whistler?

A: No, we are ScannerMaster. We are friends with these other companies and do business with them but we are all separate companies. We sell products from Uniden, Whistler and others but if you need support beyond what we are authorized to do we will refer you to the right place. We can often answer a quick question here and there about these places but we have no access to their files.

Q: Can you fix my scanner?

A: We do offer a programming service and programmed replacement SD Cards for ZIP Code scanners but we do not do repairs or sell internal parts. Newer scanners should be sent to Uniden or Whistler for authorized repairs, One great source for older scanners repairs and parts is G&G Communications, they can be reached at 585-768-8151 or http://www.gcomradio.com

Q: Can my scanner be upgraded to DMR/ProVoice/NXDN?

A: Well, that depends on the scanner you have. Here is a list of the scanners that can be upgraded for these modes. Some of these can change in the future so be sure to check back! If you have an older scanner then it cannot be upgraded for these modes.

Maker            Model             DMR               ProVoice        NXDN            Notes

Uniden            BCD996P2     Paid                 Paid                 No

Uniden            BCD325P2     Paid                 Paid                 No

Uniden            BCD536HP    Paid                 Paid                 No

Uniden            BCD436HP    Paid                 Paid                 No

Whistler          TRX-1            Free                 No                   Free     Via Firmware Update

Whistler          TRX-2            Free                 No                   Free     Via Firmware Update

Whistler          WS1095          Free                 No                   No       Via Firmware Update

Whistler          WS1098          Free                 No                   No       Via Firmware Update

Whistler          WS1080          Free                 No                   No       Via Firmware Update

Whistler          WS1088          Free                 No                   No       Via Firmware Update

GRE                PSR800           Paid                 No                   No       Only thru Whistler

RS                   PRO668          Paid                 No                   No       Only thru Whistler

RS                   PRO18            Paid                 No                   No       Only thru Whistler

WiFi on BCD536HP. How does it work?  What you can and can’t do with it.

The Uniden Bearcat BCD536HP is the only scanner that has the capability of being directly controlled by WiFi. By using the included WiFi dongle one can connect a smart phone or tablet to the scanner and listen to and control the scanner with the device. There are some other uses for the WiFi dongle as well.

Uniden has provided free “Siren” software (available for free via the Apple iTunes store or Google Play Store) to allow you to use your smart device as a scanner controller. You can even use this as a remote head for the scanner if mounted in a vehicle or to listen to your scanner from the patio or another room of the house for a scanner installed in the home. Some third party software allows you to use the WiFi feature to connect the canner to the computer without the need to plug in a cable.

There are a few things that the WiFi dongle will not work for, this includes database and firmware updates and other programming.

The Wifi dongle is designed specifically to work with your home or office WiFi network. While we have read of people using it for remote access this requires such networking tools as VPN, if you know how that works you probably can figure it out. Sorry, we cannot help with notworking issues like this!

To use the WiFi feature you need to understand the two modes involved; Infrastructure and Access Point.

Infrastructure Mode allows your scanner to connect to your home or office WiFi. This then allows you to connect to the scanner via third-party software like ProScan or RadioFeed or to the Siren application.

To get to Infrastructure Mode use the following steps:

Press Menu then select WiFi Setup>Select WiFI Mode>Infrastructure Mode

The radio will look for local access points and list them. When it displays the list select your router’s SSID name.

Then enter your password for the WiFi access point. This is the same password you would use for setting up any other WiFi device on your network. To enter the password you scroll thru the letters and use the 4 and 6 buttons to move the curser.

Access Point Mode allows you to connect you scanner to a smart phone or tablet (iOS or Android) using the free Siren software. You would use this when you are not in range of your WiFi system, such as when the radio is mounted in a vehicle. This allows you to use a phone or tablet as sort of a remote control head for the scanner.

In Access Point Mode the 536 acts as an Access Point and provides an SSID which you can change or leave at the default. You then connect your phone or tablet to that WiFi SSID and enter in the IP address in the Settings of the device. The IP address can be found in the WiFi settings on the scanner.

Siren is the free app available at the Apple iTunes Store for iPhones, iPads and iPod Touch’s. It is also available for Android devices at the Google Play Store.

Siren is a neat way to use your 536 scanner but there are limits to it. It will only work with the 536, and it has limited abilities for control. It can set the range, select Quick Keys, set the squelch and start and reply the recording features but that is pretty much all she wrote. There is also a 2-3 second delay in hearing the audio compared to the radio itself.

The WiFi feature on the 546 is unique and useful as long as you know its limits.

Update the firmware on your scanner!

Why would you want to update the firmware on your scanner, and how do you do it?
First, let’s explain WHAT firmware is. Firmware is the operating system of your radio, it works behind the scenes and tells the radio how to deal with things like keyboard inputs, frequencies, etc. Just like your computer or phone has an operating system (Like Windows 10, iOS etc.) scanners do too. Remember, scanners these days are miniature computers; they work much in the same way.

Firmware updates are released for a couple reasons. They either fix a problem or add/change features. Sometimes they do both. As an example, the BCD436HP’s most recent firmware update added the ability to add ProVoice and DMR digital protocols, before that firmware updates addressed an issue with clock settings.

When updating firmware one must follow ALL instructions CAREFULLY! You have the possibility of “bricking” your radio if you don’t do it right. This means that your $500 scanner may now be more useful as a brick than a radio… Follow the provided instructions to the letter and make sure that the program and firmware file you use is intended for your radio. The firmware for the PRO106 will not work on the WS1040!

Before trying to update the firmware on your radio make sure you have properly downloaded the firmware file itself as well as the installation program (if needed) BEFORE you start. If you do not have a replacement firmware file to install do not start the process since this erases the existing firmware to make the radio ready for the new version. No new version means no radio once you get going.

Some radios firmware updates are easier than others. The HomePatrol type radios use a program called Sentinel to check for new firmware versions and install them (easy, safe). Other Uniden scanners use a “Bearcat Version Updater” program to install a new update. GRE/RadioShack/Whistler scanners also use an application to install new firmware versions (nerve-wracking maybe).

What they all have in common is that they require a computer running Windows to update. (You can do it with a Mac running Windows with Parallels, Fusion, Bootcamp etc.) You also need the appropriate cable to connect from your computer to the radio. This is usually done via USB but some older radios use a Serial port.

Before updating your firmware make sure you have the following on hand:
• The radio you want to update
• The proper cable for your radio, along with the drivers already installed (if needed)
• The Firmware Updating program appropriate for your radio
• The actual firmware file itself (Imperative!)
• A strong sedative or plenty of alcohol to calm your nerves (optional)

Follow the instructions included with the firmware update TO THE LETTER. Make sure your radio and the computer can communicate properly. If you have programming software for your radio then read it first and save the programming file just in case you need to restore it to the radio. This also ensures that the radio and computer can communicate.

We also suggest that you check the RadioReference forum for your radio to see what other people’s experiences have been. Reading about someone else’s mistake is a lot easier than trying to fix your own.

Owners of PRO651 and PRO652 scanners that had tried to update their radios’ firmware versions had issues since no firmware updates were available until recently. Now one can download them and install them so previously bricked radios can be reincarnated.

ScannerMaster can update the firmware on many different models of scanners. Download the Hometown Programming Form for your radio and check the Firmware Update option if you would prefer our expert programmers to do this for you. We keep them heavily sedated all of the time already so their nerves are steady. Firmware Updates for “Zip Code Scanners” (HomePatrol, 436/536 and the TRX/WS1080/1088/1095/1098 series scanners) is included with the Setup and Optimize package already, it is an extra cost option for other scanners. If you aren’t sure call us and we will let you know.

Scanner Tip of the Week: Plural Radios, Single Antenna

So you really got bit by the scanner bug and have several scanners to really keep tabs on the action. You really want to have a better antenna for them all but don’t want an antenna farm growing on your roof or your attic. What to do?

There are several good ways to share one antenna with 2 or more radios. There are also several bad ways. The bad ways might work good enough to hear some local stuff but that is about it.

The best way to share an antenna with multiple radios is by use of a Multicoupler. A Multicoupler has a connector for the antenna and 2, 4 8 or more ports for radios.Multicouplers allow signals from the antenna to pass thru it to multiple radios and prevents interference between them. “Active Multicouplers” have low power pre-amps in them to overcome the connector loss present whenever you put something between the radio and its antenna. “Passive Multicouplers” do not have the amplifier and will degrade the signal a bit.

Stridsberg makes several models of Multicouplers tailor made for scanners. Stridsberg is the most respected name in scanner multicouplers and ScannerMaster is proud to carry them. Up to 8 scanners can be connected to a single scanner antenna without loss. Check these out at http://www.scannermaster.com/Multicouplers_for_Police_Scanner_Radios_s/43.htm

If your needs are less stringent then you could use a splitter. Splitters are different in that they merely provide a way to share an antenna with two or more radios. These do not have the circuitry to reduce or overcome signal loss. Splitters can usually be used in the reverse way, to allow 2 antennas to feed a single radio, something that multicouplers usually cannot do.

One could just use coax “T” or “Y” adaptors but these provide no protection against interference or signal loss and are not recommended.

Regardless of the methods use there is no substitute for quality cables. Using high-quality coax, both for the downlink from the antenna and for the jumpers to the radios will reduce the loss and increase the signal strength. Don’t forget to use quality connectors if you make the patch cables yourself. Avoid the use of adapters as much as you can, everyone adds a little more loss to the line.

Drivers? What are they and why do I need them?

If you have a scanner and a computer you will most likely want to use one with the other. Computer programs (like ARC products) are great for programming and controlling scanners.

Windows however tries to make life difficult for us and requires almost everything we connect to a computer to have “drivers”. Drivers are basically small programs that allow the computer and device to talk to each other, kind of like an interpreter.

If the stars are all aligned and all is well with the world the device driver will load automatically when you plug in the device. If not then you will have to install a driver to make it work.

We have a link here that helps scanner users get drivers and load them. This page also links to download pages for the drivers needed by many scanners.

Depending on the scanner you have the driver might be connected to the radio or to a separate cable. If your scanner has a standard USB port on it (such as a HomePatrol, a BCD996P2, BCD325P2 or some of the other newer model Uniden and Whistler scanners) then the driver goes to the radio itself.

If you have an older radio with a USB-serial adaptor cable, such as a BCD996XT, BCD396XT, PRO106, a PSR 500/600 etc. then the driver is matched to the cable (like the Uniden USB-1, or the blue, orange or black RadioShack/GRE/Whistler cables). Once the cable has the proper driver installed and a serial port (Comm-X) number assigned it can be used for any compatible radio with no further issues.

Some radios use an old fashioned serial port with a DB-9 connection, either on the radio or it’s programming cable. These require a serial port on the computer itself or the use of an USB-Serial adaptor. If you use a USB-Serial adaptor then the drivers connect to the adaptor.

The common denominator for all this is that the radio gets a “Com Port” number assigned. This will show up as “COM1” , “COM36” etc. Once this number is displayed in the Device Manager use that number in your programming software so the radio and program can communicate. This is kind of like a channel number, if the radio and computer are both set to the same Com Port number they can talk.

Com Port and communication issues are the biggest problem faced with users of software and scanners. Once you get the drivers loaded and the program set to the right com port then you can read and write to the radio all you want.

Some older USB-Serial adapters and cables will not work with some newer versions of Windows, or with 64-bit versions of Windows. Others require newer drivers to be downloaded and installed. Once installed the drivers should automatically be loaded each time you plug in the cable but sometimes Windows may change the com port number so if you have problems check the Device Manager to make sure.

Limited Stock on GRE PSR-800 Digital Police Scanner

By Jonathan Higgins

If you haven’t heard already, GRE shut-down it’s manufacturing operation last September (2012) due to financial constraints. GRE America will continue to support and warranty these products. We have limited stock of GRE PSR-800 Digital Pre-Programmed Digital Police Scanner What different about this scanner? The PSR-800 is only scanner on the market right now that follows Project 25 Phase 2 TDMA Systems. Here are a handful of Phase 2 system online today:

  • Prince George’s County MD Project 25 System
  • Loudoun County VA Project 25 System
  • Apopka County FL Project 25 System
  • King County WA Metro Transit Project 25 System

The popularity of this system type is growing, with more Phase 2 systems coming online this year! Not sure if your area is switching to a Project 25 Phase 2 TDMA system? E-mail us! GRE PSR-800 Basics Programming This pre-progammed digital scanner has the Radio Reference national database for the U.S. and Canada. You can program the scanner by going into the national database and selecting the agencies you want to monitor. For simple and quick programming you can enter your zip code and the scanner will program agencies for your local area. We strongly recommend our Set-up and Optimize service for those who are not experienced scanner users or techies. This service is very affordable at $29.95 and covers the following:

  • Setting up a local favorites list/Scan List for your hometown
  • Updating the national pre-programmed database to the current date
  • Updating the radio’s firmware (operating system) to the latest version

Once our Set-up and Optimized Service is done, your scanner will be ready to go out of the box! Highlights

  • Easy to understand Media Player User Interface – The simplified keypad and display with familiar Play, Pause and Navigation controls make EZ Scan Digital intuitive to use.
  • Complete USA Database on a MicroSD Card – The entire USA database is stored on a MicroSD Card included with the EZ Scan Digital, giving the user the most comprehensive radio data available…all without connecting EZ Scan Digital to a computer or Internet a GRE First!
  • Upgradeable CPU Firmware and Library – Keep EZ Scan Digital current with the enhancements and updates as they become available through provided PC Software Application
  • Powerful PC Software Application – Modify or add your own Scanlist with the easy to us EZ Scan Digital software application.
  • SKYWARN Store Spotter Functionality – Instant access to frequencies used by storm spotter networks. Monitor storm conditions as they occur, and learn about dangerous conditions before the media or emergency management officials announce them to the general public.
  • SAME and All Hazards Weather Alerting -EZ Scan Digital features a Dedicated SAME Weather Alert Receiver mode, alerting users to severe weather and other hazards in the specific area(s) that they select. EZ Scan Digital can check local NOAA weather frequencies periodically, even while scanning, and provide an alert when an All Hazards alert occurs.
  • Multi-System Digital and Analog Trunking – Scans digital and analog trunked radio system signaling formats, including Project-25, Motorola Type I/II/Hybrid, EDACS, and LTR systems.
  • Powerful Spectrum Sweeper – Quickly sweeps EZ Scan Digital’s frequency ranges for transmissions from nearby sources. When a nearby transmission is found, EZ Scan Digital automatically tunes to that frequency and receives the transmission.
  • Built-in Service Searches – Predefined service search ranges makes it easy to fine activity in your area.
  • Audible alarms – Programmable alarms can be configured to sound when certain frequencies are active.
  • Signal Strength Meter – Shows relative strength of received signals
  • Slim, compact case design with larger speaker – Designed for one-handed operation and portability.

For more info about this product.

Promote Your Scanner Related Organization

Do you have police/fire buff incident blog?
Are you apart of a non-profit fire buff network?
Are you apart of a non-profit incident rehab organization for Fire, Police, and so on?
Do you host a scanner feed on Radio Reference?

We would love to hear about your blog/website, non-profit organization, or scanner feed! Tell us about your scanner related interest and we will share it on our blog.

Here is how you do it!

E-Mail us the following info:
Tell us about your blog/website, non-profit organization or scanner feed.

Make sure you include the following:

  • How did it start? How long has it been around?
  • Tell us about you or your group
  • How does scanners play a role?
  • Provide links to website/blog, Twitter, Facebook , Google Plus
  • Photos, photos, photos, we would like to see photos of scanners in action.

    [Scanner Feed Providers also include]

  • What can be heard on your feed
  • What scanner(s) are using
  • What are you using for antenna
  • Are you using any filters, special cables, etc.
  • Photos of your set up!
Be sure to include the above details before you submit your organization.

Thank you

Scanner Master reserves the right to not post an entry.

Firmware Alert – Uniden HomePatrol-1 [2.03.01]

By Jonathan Higgins

Product: Uniden HomePatrol-1 (HP-1)
Firmware Update: 2.03.01

What included in the update?

  • Improved the SD Card Error message to help resolve troubleshooting issues.
  • Added a low-pass filter switch option for raw data output mode.
  • Added a remote command to control the low-pass filter switch.
  • Fixed the issue where the display mode setting was reset after cycling power.
  • Fixed that some systems were not appearing in Add Channel mode.
  • More details

    This update should fix a couple of the little bugs that were reported to Uniden. Nothing major in this update.
How to update your HomePatrol?

  1. Plug your HP-1 into AC Power to prevent power lost during update.
  2. Connect your HP-1 to your PC via the Programming cable.
  3. Open the Sentinel Software
    (If you don’t have the software download it here)
  4. Click “Update” tab
  5. Select “Update Firmware”
  6. Your HomePatrol should be selected, click “OK”
  7. The software will prompt you once the download is done.
  8. Disconnect the programming cable from your HP-1
  9. Please allow a few minutes for the update process to run.
  10. Your HP-1 will restart and the firmware update is complete.

Scanner 101 – Programming the Uniden Bearcat BC125AT Scanner

Product: Uniden Bearcat BC125AT Scanner

Scanner 101 Topic: Manually programming the BC125AT Scanner without software.


Here are the steps to programming a conventional frequency into BC125AT

Step 1
Press Hold Button and Press the channel number you want to program then hit hold again.

Step 2
Press “Func” (Orange Button) then hit “Pgm E” button.

Step 3
“Enter Frequency” will be highlighted press “Pgm E” button.

Step 4
Press in the frequency you would like to program, then hit “Pgm E” button when you done.

Step 5
Select “Edit Tag” by scrolling the knob at the top of the scanner one click clockwise, then press “Pgm E” button.

Step 6
Using the knob at the top of the scanner scroll thru the letters and stop on the one you want then hit the “6 >” button to add the next letter. (repeat this step on until complete) Once your done with your Text Tag then hit the “Pgm E” button

Step 6
Select “Set CTCSS/DCS ” by scrolling the knob at the top of the scanner one click clockwise, then press “Pgm E” button.

Step 7
You can select from the following CTCSS/DCS options

  • Off
  • DCS
  • CTCSS/DCS Search

If the frequency has a CTCSS or DCS you can program it here or you can Search for it.

Step 8
The other options in the menu you wouldn’t need to worry about when programming. You can now hit scan to start scanning. To add more frequencies repeat Steps 1 – 7.

Programming Software
Programming software is available from Uniden and from BuTel software. Uniden Software will be very basic vs. the BuTel Software will more advanced. With the BuTel Software you will have capability to import frequencies from RadioReference.com with a paid Membership.