Sunday, December 16, 2012

Basic Settings. Making the most of your scanner

Everyone wants to hear something straight away - while this may not always happen, here is a little tip to get you 'fishing' straight away.

Lets just say your curious to see what you can find in the 70Mhz range in your local area.. this may be quiet at night time so perhaps best try it during business hours..

Turn the scanner ON.

If it does not start scanning automatically - Push SCAN.

Now Push HOLD.

While the scanner has stopped and 'HOLD' is displayed in the top left hand side of the screen, type in 70.0000.
 'Direct Entry' will appear on the screen as shown below....once you have typed in 70.0000, push HOLD again.

It does not really matter what frequency you type in - the results will be the same

The scanner will automatically choose the correct modulation (AM/FM/NFM etc) and the frequency step size.. 

Quick Search will now appear on the screen as shown below.

To search push the HOLD button once again...

The scanner will now commence a quick search either up or down the frequency range.
To scan up - Turn the dial Clockwise (Right).. to scan down - turn the dial Anti-Clockwise (Left).

Once the scanner finds an active frequency it will pause until you rotate the dial Left or Right again.
If it is something of interest and you wish to listen/monitor it - push HOLD.

Once the transmission is finished - push HOLD again to resume searching.
Remember to rotate the dial Left or Right depending on which direction you wish your search to go...

If you find something of interest that you wish to save - Push the HOLD button when the transmission is active.
While in HOLD mode - Push YES.

The screen will now change and display 'Quick Freq Save' as shown below

If you wish to save the frequency - push YES and the frequency will be saved into the scanners 'Quick Save' memory.

Of course you can still save the frequency the old fashion way, by simply writing it down manually on a notepad and enter it later into the designated 'System' you wish to save it in....

Once you have finished playing with the 'Quick Search' feature - push the SCAN button to return to normal operation.

At any time you make a mistake - simply push the SCAN button and start again.

During a 'Quick Search', the Scanner will only search in the pre-set factory default modulation and step sizes.
In most cases this will be fine - if it is a particular odd frequency your searching - you may wish to create a custom search. This is covered in another section.

Applies to trunking Systems including the NSW -VIC (MMR) and SA Government Radio Network

Quick search is also a good way to quickly find active control channels in your local area.
Users in NSW, Metro Melbounre  and SA may find this a quick way to find the strongest control channel in their area.
Control Channels are what makes the scanner lock onto the radio networks data channel.

To find a control channel, follow the same procedure as shown above but start your search at 400.0000 and search up the range. (Rotate the dial Clockwise)
You will hear when the scanner finds a Control Channel as it will stop on a 'Noisy' computer generated sound that simply wont stop...
While it has paused on the control channel - make a note of the frequency and write it down  also have a look at the signal meter on the top right of the screen - the more bars the better the control channel reception.
To see if there are any more control channels within your range - simply rotate the dial clockwise again to continue up the search range to see if there are any more..
Generally there is only ONE of any real use - however if you are using an external antenna, you may come across two or three depending on your location - always make a note of the 'strongest signal'.

The most powerful signal you find is generally the best Control Channel to use.
The information you gather here may assist in setting up your Trunking System.


Setting the Squelch.

Setting the Squelch to the correct level can make all the difference between
receiving what you want to hear and what you don't.
If the Squelch is set to low, the scanner will stop on every little annoying 'noise' it hears... having the squelch set to high can make the scanner too 'fussy' and it may skip straight over some transmissions...
I usually set mine to around 6 or 7.

It's simple enough to do by following this procedure.

Turn the scanner - ON

Put the scanner into scan mode by pushing the Scan button (if its not already scanning)

On the left hand side of the scanner - push the FUNC button.

A small 'F' will appear on the top left hand side of the screen.

While this 'F' is displayed push the Rotary dial down - you will hear it make a small 'click' as its pressed down.


The Rotary dial is located at the top of the scanner - it has Sel/Vol/Sql written to the left of it.
This dial has two main functions - it can be turned left or right or pushed down to help make and confirm settings.
In some cases it can also double up as a 'YES' button to help confirm selections.---------------------------------------------------------------

SQUELCH LEVEL will be displayed along the bottom of the screen and a small horizontal bar graph.
Rotate the Dial left or right according to your required setting.
A number will also appear on the left hand side of the bottom of the screen to also indicate the setting level.
Once the correct level has been set - Push the  Dial once again to save your settings.

The squelch has now been set.


Changing the Screen Colour.

Don't like the current colour of your scanners screen?
The UBCD396XT lets you change your screen to suit your mood!

To change the colour follow these instructions.

On the left hand side of the scanner - push the FUNC pad.

The screen will now display the MENU
Using the Rotary dial (Volume control) turn it clockwise until
Settings is highlighted as shown below.

Once Settings has been highlighted - Push YES
The screen will then change to display Settings at the top. (as shown in the picture below)
If not already highlighted - use the Volume dial to highlight
Set Backlight, then push YES.

The screen will then open up the Backlight menu as shown below.

Using the Volume dial - trun it clockwise unitl Set Color is highlighted
(Yes Color is spelt the American way)

You will notice that there are a couple other settings in the Backlight Menu. These include setting the Mode and the Dimmer.
If you highlight Mode - and push Yes, a new menu will open up letting you select the time the backlight stays on and when it will be activated.
10 Sec - Backlight stays on for 10 seconds.
30 Sec - Backlight stays on for 30 seconds.
Squelch - Backlight comes on when squelch opens - someone talks.
Keypress - Everytime you press a key the backlight will come on for the designated time pre-set earlier.
Infintie - Stays on all the time.
Trick is to set the time first..  say you want the backlight to stay on for 10 seconds only...
Highlight 10 Sec and push Yes.
Screen will revert back to previous menu.
Highlight Set Mode again and push Yes.
Now we want the Backlight to come on only when the squelch is open - when someone talks.
Highlight Squelch and push Yes.
Screen wil revert back to previous menu again.
The Backlight has now been set to come on for 30 seconds when someone talks.

Setting the Dimmer is just as easy.
While in the Set Backlight Menu -Highlight Set Dimmer and push Yes.
A new Menu will open up with three choices High, Middle and Low.
Using the Volume dial highlight your desired backlight brightness and push Yes.
Screen will revert back to previous menu and we can continue to the next step to change the colour.

Changing the colour of the screens backlight is quite simple at this point.
Simply make sure that Set Color is highlighted and push Yes.
The menu will now let you scroll between the following colours...
White - Yellow - Cyan - Blue - Red  - Magenta - Green
Once you have selected your desired Backlight colour you can then push Yes.
The colour of the backlight has now been set.
Push your Scan button to resume 'scanning'.

Here are some examples below.
 whats the point? Glad you asked.
You can also set the backlight colours for different frequncies and talk groups.
For example, I have my backlight set to glow RED when the Fire Dept are talking and BLUE for the Ambulance.
I will often leave the volume down quite low and when I see the screen glow or flash RED or BLUE I know its a frequency that I may wish to monitor - I can then pick up the scanner and adjust the volume so I can hear the conversation.
Very handy when watching TV and don't want to be bothered by the scanner in the background, unless it's something important, simply set the backlight colour to your favourite frequency and monitor the colours!


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Tasmanian EDACS File available NOW!

Tasmanian EDACS File 
Free UBCD396XT to anyone who can catch me one of these.!


Data file contains complete EDACS State wide system - can be used virtually anywhere in Tasmania that the EDACS system is used.

This data file includes POLICE and SES Talk group IDS.      
(Some Police may be encrypted) Version 7 File also contains ALL users of the EDACS system including some power suppliers.
This data file is free for your use. NO CHARGE!

You can see below from this 'Screen Save' of the FREESCAN software that the data file contains all the relevant Tasmanian EDACS regions.
(Screen shot is of Version 4 - but the basic view is the same on all Versions)

The file can only be opened in FREEScan, so you will have to download a copy from here.

This file will be modified and updated on a regular basis so please fell free to check back and see what version is available.

Thanks must go to 'Adam' and the folks from the 'Scanning Tasmania' web page.
Brilliant web page and loads of information!
Without this web page I would not have been able to complete my data file.
You can check it out here -

If you would like a copy of this data file for your UBCD396XT scanner please feel free to request a copy at - Please write Tasmanian File in the subject heading.

Last update - 12th Jan 2014 - 8:00am


How to update your EDACS site.

These instructions are based on the fact that you have already created a site for the System you are updating.

If you have not already got a Tasmanian EDACS system in your scanner - it would be suggested you download a copy of `Freescan’ and then upload the Tasmaina Data file to your scanner. The latest file should have all the correct data anyway - but if you a 'hands on' person you may want to use these instructions and update manually via the keypad.

Follow these instructions to update your frequencies.


Push YES

Using the volume dial rotate it left or right and highlight the system you are updating.

For this example I will use the `West Coast’ system and `Strahan’ site.

Highlight `West Coast’

Push Yes

Scroll to Edit Site

Push Yes

Scroll to select `Strahan’

Push Yes

Scroll to Set Frequencies

Push Yes

IMPORTANT the frequencies MUST be entered in logical channel order!

To make the job easier – write them all down in order on a sheet of paper.
Information is available from -

Now when you are in the SEL FREQUENCY mode you will see the previous frequencies that are entered.

Now starting with the first frequency, cross reference with it your list.

If they match and are in the same order, scroll to the next one.

Follow this procedure until you find one that does not match.

While the incorrect frequency is highlighted push YES

The Frequency will show at the top of the scanners screen and a list of edit options will appear below.

Using the scroll – highlight Edit Frequency

Push YES

Now type in the new frequency and push Yes.
The Scanner will now ask for the `LCN' (Logical Channel Number)
Now make sure that that you enter the correct LCN number! (Check your list)

To check that the scanner has accepted your update – push the MENU button on the left side of the scanner to go back to the previous menu screen.

Now you should be able to scroll up and down to see that the changes have been made.

Now if the frequency didn’t need updating but simply the addition of a new frequency, repeat the process again but this time select NEW FREQUENCY in the ‘Sel Frequency’ screen menu.

Remember if adding a new Frequency – make sure you still add the LCN number as well or it simply wont work correctly.

Once all frequencies have been updated - simply push the SCAN button to get the Scanner active again.

If you have any questions or comment regarding this information or experience any problems using these instructions, please let me know asap so updates and modifications can be made.

Updated 12th Jan 2014  8:00am

Saturday, April 21, 2012


How to add a Talk Group Name and a Talk Group ID.

The beauty of a TrunkTracking scanner is that it has the abiltiy to follow the conversation correctly and in most cases  display the 'Talkgroup ID' of the person/service talking.
The UBCD396XT is ideal for searching for new TalkGroup ID's.. but how do I store them?

If you have already programmed your scanner to follow a particular 'system' - for example the SA GRN or NSW GRN, you would have already noticed that when there is activity a 'number' will appear on the screen while they talk.
This number is the 'Talkgroup ID'.
(Scanner MUST BE in 'ID SEARCH' mode - see section below in BLUE)

To use an example - one of the most common ones found on the SA GRN is the number '42992' - This number represents the SA Ambulance 'Tasking' ID for the lower half of SA. 
Everytime a new job is dispatched this number will generally appear on the screen.

Now you could simply download the Freescan software and enter all the data via a computer - this is by far MUCH MUCH easier and less time consuming - but not everyone may have a computer with them when they are listening - especially when a new talk group may be found while out in 'the Field'.

Storing the talk group to the Scanners memory gives you the flex-ability to add a alpha tag (Name) to it - so you can actually see the name of the group that is active and also gives the user the ability to use the scanner to only monitor the actual talk groups saved...

For example - A local Tow Truck operator recently asked me to update his older UBCD396T scanner to receive the SA GRN... His only request was to listen to the SA Fire Dispatch - SA Ambulance Dispatch and the Local SES dispatch.. a total of THREE talk groups only!
After entering the three talk groups into his scanner he asked me how to stop the scanner from hearing all the other talk groups on the GRN...
I advised him to set the scanner to 'ID Scan' only - that way the scanner will only open the squelch when either of the three installed talk groups actually transmit.

Seemed kind of a waste to have only THREE active talk groups entered into this scanner - but that's all he wanted to hear. He wasn't interested in listening to anyone else - only what effectively 'made him money'.

By saving your favourite talk groups to the scanners memory you can do virtually the same as the Two Truck Operator did - set the scanner to only monitor the saved talk groups.
You may be a big fan of the CFS/CFA and MFS - so listening to other talk groups may be of no interest to you at all..
So if you enter only the CFA/MFS talk groups - set the Scanner to 'ID Scan' .
Once the scanner is set to 'ID SCAN' you will hear nothing else but the CFS/MFS talk groups that you entered..
Make sense?

When the Scanner is in 'ID Search' mode - it picks up EVERYTHING you have saved and anything else that it finds.
'ID Scan' will only listen to what you have saved - nothing else!

You can switch between 'ID Scan' and 'ID Search' by pushing the Function Button on the top left hand side of the scanner and then push the 'scan' button.
If your scanner is currently showing 'ID SCAN' scrolling across the screen, it should change to 'ID SEARCH'... or visa versa...
You can only change between the two modes when the scanner is  Trunk Tracking a system.. it will not work in conventional mode!

Creating  Talk Groups 

Before you attempt to save any  IDs to the scanners memory it would probably pay to create some 'talk groups'

Talk groups are where the relevant talk group IDs will be stored.

Talk Groups are simply adding an extra file to the system you have already created..
Talk Groups could be called 'FIRE' Ambulance' Police' 'SES'... etc etc..
When you create these Talk Groups you can then store each actual talk group ID found into its respective group in the scanners memory.

For example.
Your 'SYSTEM' is called 'SA GRN'.
A Talk group is a group of users within the 'SYSTEM'.
That Talk group could be the 'SA Ambulance'
Inside the SA Ambulance Talk group, there are other individual users who come under the same 'Job Description'.
These could be Ambulance dispatch, the Royal Flying Doctors is also under the same 'banner' as the SA Ambulance...
Each one of these users inside the actual Talk group has their own individual ID (and even there own radio ID- but that's another story)

Below is a very 'crude' breakdown' of how the SYSTEM is structured in the scanners memory.
First you create a 'System'
Under that 'System' is a 'Talk Group'
Inside the 'Talk Group' are the users of that 'Talk Groups' relevant ID numbers, with their own independent 'Apha Tags' (names).

Here is how to create your very own 'Talk Group'.

I will use the example of my already installed SA GRN system (SA Government radio Network - Motoroloa type II), but the principle is virtually the same for the NSW GRN and most other trunking systems.

highlight Program System
Push YES

Select System Menu will appear.
Highlight SA GRN - (or your particular Trunking system)
Push YES

SA GRN will apear on the top of the screen (or your particular trunking system)
Using the Volume Dial - turn it clockwise to highlight Edit Group
Push YES

Select Group will appear on top of the screen.
Using the Volume Dial - turn it clockwise to highlight New Group
Push YES

Processing Please wait will appear for a few seconds...

Group and a Number will apear on the top of the screen - First time will always say Group 1
Highlight Edit Name
Push YES

Edit Name will now appear on top of the screen.
Push the .NO button twice to erase the current display.
Enter AMBULANCE (or whatever name you wish to call the group) and push YES.

(Remember how to enter Text? - Use the Rotary Volume dial to select the text and the 6 button to move across the screen - make a mistake - push the .NO button once to remove the last input)

Once you have named the new Group, push YES

Now push Scan.

Now the scanner should be in 'ID SEARCH' mode - you can see this by the words 'ID SEARCH' scrolling across the screen.

Hint/Tip:If it says 'ID SCAN', push the Func button on the top left hand side of the scanner and push the Scan button - this will change from ID SEARCH to ID SCAN, repeat the process to return to ID SCAN.
(Remember ID SCAN will ONLY let you hear the talk groups you have stored!)

Now simply wait until you hear someone talk.
When the talk group ID appears on the screen. 

Push YES!

The screen will ask..
Quick TGID Save?
(If you push YES - the scanner will save the talk group ID into a generic group that the scanner defaults to save everything!
If you wish to simply store the talk groups for later review and your unsure of 'who' they actually are, I would suggest pushing YES and then you can review them at a later stage.)

Otherwise if you are confident that you know the talk group displayed on the screen you can allocate it directly to its respective group.
If this is the case...

Push the .NO button.

Screen will then change to read...

Select Group

Now if you have followed my example - you may have already created a series of three or four groups called ,
etc etc etc

Depending on who the talk group ID number relates to - you can now use the Volume dial to scroll to and highlight the already allocated group that the talk group ID belongs to.

TIP: If you know that the Talk group ID displayed on the screen is relevant to the Metro Fire Dept - you would not save that ID into the Ambulance Talk Group.

Highlight the respective Group the ID belongs to and push YES

This has now saved the talk group ID into your selected group.

A new screen will appear with the talk group ID displayed.
Edit Name will be highlighted.
At this stage you can no attach a name (alpha tag) to the talk group ID, so next time it appears on the screen it will have a name - making it easier to recognise.

Once completed - push Scan.

If the talk group you have now saved is active - it will now display not only the name of the talk group - but the name of the group as well..

If you have a list of all the talk groups you wish to monitor you can simply manually enter them one by one via the scanners keypad - but this is a slow process and does require a lot of patience.

This can be done at the earlier stage when you are actually creating the talk group ID groups.
When you create the initial 'Group'
you can then enter the actual individual talk group ID


To enter the talk group ID number manually,

Push Menu.
Program System will be highlighted.
Push YES
Using the Volume dial - scroll to highlight the system you wish to add the talk group ID.

Once highlighted, push YES

Using the volume dial to scroll down the screen to highlight Edit Group.
Push YES

Using the Volume dial - scroll to the group you wish to add the talk group ID to.

Once highlighted - push YES

Using the volume dial - scroll down the screen to highlight Edit Channel.

Push YES

Using the volume dial scroll down the screen to highlight New Channel

Push YES

Input TGID will be displayed at the top of the screen...

Input the talk group ID number using the keypad.

Once completed push YES

Screen will then display the talk group ID you have just entered, you can now use the sub menu below to add the alpha tag to the talk group ID.

Once name has been entered push YES.

to enter another talk group ID, push the Menu button after pushing YES and the screen will revert back to prior menu so you can repeat the process again.
Once you have entered your talk group IDs and are finished, push the Scan button.

Processing Please wait will appear briefly and the scanner will commence scanning again.

Congratulations - you have entered a talk group ID!

Version 3.
Updated 5th Feb 2013.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Single Frequency Entry - Creating a New System & Group

How to store an individual frequency into a SYSTEM.

To store a frequency you have to create a SYSTEM to store it in.

You can put the frequency into a pre-configured system but if the frequency you wish to store relates to the FIRE Dept and your only existing SYSTEM is a Police SYSTEM it would make no sense and add confusion by putting a FIRE Dept Frequency in a POLICE Dept SYSTEM.  This would be the equivalent in an older Scanner of putting a Fire Frequency in a Police ‘Bank’ with all the Police Frequencies.

By creating separate SYSTEMS you can then allocate them Quick Key to turn them on or off similar to turning a ‘Bank’ on or off on older Scanners.

First thing you have to do is obviously have the correct frequencies ready that you wish to store.

For this example we will use – 491.350 NFM

Push the MENU Button.

PROGRAM SYSTEM should be Highlighted.

Push YES.

Select System should be displayed at the top of the screen.

Using the Scroll Dial – rotate it left or right until New System is Highlighted.

Push YES.

Select Sys Type should be displayed at the top of the screen.

Using the dial rotate it left or right until Conventional is highlighted.

Push YES.

The Scanner will now ask to Confirm?

Push YES.

Now the number of the System you have created will be displayed at the top of the screen.

And Edit name will be highlighted.

At this point you can change the name of the SYSTEM to something more user friendly instead of a simple number.

Push YES.

Edit Name will be displayed at the top of the screen.

The current SYSTEM number will also be displayed.

To remove this current text from the screen and re-name the SYSTEM, push the decimal point or NO button twice.

You now have a blank entry point to create your own SYSTEM name.

For example let’s call it FIRE DEPT.

To enter FIRE DEPT – Use the scroll dial to rotate left or right until the letter you wish to use is highlighted.

The first one we want is F.

Once F is highlighted, push the 6 button.

This will move the cursor to the right so you can enter the next letter, I.

Using the scroll dial – repeat the process until FIRE has been entered.

Now to make a space between FIRE and DEPT simply push the 6 button twice after the E in FIRE, to create a space.

Once the text entry has been completed and FIRE DEPT is on the screen you can save it now by pushing the YES button once.

The SYSTEM now has a name. (FIRE DEPT)

FIRE DEPT will now be highlighted on the top of the screen.

Using the scroll dial – rotate it down until Edit System Option is highlighted.

Push YES.

Set Quick Key will be highlighted.

At this point you can now allocate a Quick Key to the SYSTEM so you can turn it on or off quickly via the scanners keypad.

Now if you don’t already have a SYSTEM that has a quick key you can put number 1 in if you want?

You can have as many SYSTEMS allocated to the same number as well.

For example – Some users will allocate ALL their EMERGENCY SERVICES SYSTEMS to quick key ONE.

And their PUBLIC SYSTEMS to quick key TWO.

Then they can alternate between what they want to listen to with the push of two buttons.

Push the YES button to set your Quick Key button.

Using the scroll dia,l rotate to highlight number 1.

Push YES to save your selection.

Now to enter the Frequency – you need to Push the Menu button to return to the previous Menu.

FIRE DEPT should be displayed at the top of the screen.

Edit System Option will be highlighted.

Using the scroll dial rotate it until Edit Group is highlighted.

Push YES.

Select Group will be displayed at the top of the screen.

New Group will be highlighted.

Push YES.

Group 1 will be displayed at the top of the screen and Edit Name will be highlighted.

Push YES.

Repeat the process as mentioned before to change the name of the Group.

Edit Name will be highlighted.

Push YES.

Push the NO button twice to clear the current text.

Inside each SYSTEM  you have groups. These groups can be useful to store relevant frequencies for each individual user inside the Fire Dept System.

For example Your System is called the FIRE DEPT, but inside that SYSTEM you may want to create a series of smaller individual groups that relate to other users that all come under the FIRE DEPT `Umbrella’.

There might be `Dispatch’ would be Group 1

Rescue might be Group 2

Recovery might be Group 3

Each Group may have four or five individual frequencies allocated to their ‘Section/Region/Area.’

We won’t get to involved in this just yet as this is a whole other section, so for today’s lesson stick with one group!

Let’s call this group `Local Region’.

Once you have typed in `Local Region’

Push YES to save your text.

Now the top of the screen should show LOCAL REGION.

Using the scroll dial rotate it until Edit Channel is highlighted.

Push YES.

Finally after all your hard work you can now enter the frequency!

Select Channel will be displayed at the top of the screen.

New Channel will be highlighted.

Push YES.

Now you can type in 419.350 (or whatever your frequency may be.)

Now push YES to  save.

Now the frequency will be displayed at the top of the screen.

Edit Name will be highlighted.

At this point you can now give the frequency a name if you desire!

Handy when they actually use the frequency as your scanner will then display the users name.

419.350 may be your Regional Fire Dispatch frequency – so typing in Reg Dispatch, means it will come up on the scanners screen when they talk.

If you want to name the frequency – repeat the text input method as explained earlier.

Once you have entered the name of the frequency,

Push YES to save your changes.

Now at this point you are pretty much ready to scan this frequency.

You have created a SYSTEM and you have created a group inside the SYSTEM to allocate the frequency to.

Now all you have to do is push the SCAN button and your in business!

If you want to check its going correctly you should see FIRE DEPT come up on the screen and a small number representing your SYSTEM showing on the SO line of the scanners screen.


Good luck.

Any issues – email me at

Monday, February 20, 2012

UBCD396XT - FreeScan Basic Software Instructions

Here is a quick guide to get you up and going using FreeSCAN Software.

For the more 'experienced user' a more advanced and in depth instruction manual on the operation of FREEScan can also be found here.

Please remember - the FREEScan software was originally developed for the US range of scanners.. please remember this when making any adjustments. The service search settings for example are very different on the US scanner than the Australian models...
The instructions I have written cover the basics only, but should be enough to get you up and going without to much trouble.
DONT FORGET - Make sure you save your files or any changes you make!
Spending hours putting in data and then losing it all can be quite frustrating.

*If you are going to use the supplied Serial Cable and don't have a serial port on your computer, you will have to purchase a Serial to USB CABLE
These cables can be purchased from most electrical retailers from around $25-$30 each - Of course the same thing can also be sourced from Ebay - simply search 'USB TO SERIAL CABLE'.

FreeSCAN can be downloaded from this link.
Click on
Once downloaded - open the software.
Put your mouse cursor over 'Scanner'... a small drop down menu will appear.
Then left click on 'Control Scanner'
A small box will open with the title 'Virtual Control'.
Left click in COM Port Setup.
Another box will open with the title COM Port Settings.
Left click on Start Auto.
The software will now try to detect your scanner - this may take a few minutes.
Once found another box will open up confirming the scanner has been found.
As shown in the picture below......
In some instances the software will not locate the UBCD396XT - you simply need to lower the 'Baud Rate' in the scanner.
I have had better success with the FreeSCAN software by setting the UBCD396XT Serial Port to 57600 bps.
This can be done as follows:
Push Menu
Highlight Settings.
Push YES.
In 'Settings Menu', highlight Set Serial Port.
Push YES.
In Set Serial Port Menu, highlight 57600 bps.
Push Yes.
Once done - push SCAN.
The Serial Port 'Baud rate' has now been changed to 57600 bps.
If everything works correctly you will get a small screen appear to confirm the scanner has been found.
As shown below.

Left click on OK.

Previous 'Com Port Settings' Menu will be displayed again.

Left click on Close.
Main Software Menu page will be displayed again.

Place you mouse cursor over 'Scanner' and then left click on Download Programming

FreeSCAN - Read From Scanner Menu will now appear...

Left click on Queue System List. This will then let the software access the database stored in the scanner as shown below.

For this example I have used the default setting on the UBCDD396XT - this includes ALL the original Factory DATA and Systems.

Don't worry too much about the Errors 54 showing in the example above - this can be avoided by removing the ticks in the two boxes - 'Get Custom Search Ranges' and 'Get Scanner Settings' boxes...before you actually download from the scanner..)

Left click on Start Download
Once download is completed - screen will appear as shown below.

If you notice to the left of the 'scanner picture' the display reads Errors 40.
This is because FreeScan does not totally recognise the Australian Verison of the US Version BCD396XT - it cant understand some of the settings and throws a 'wobbly', these are recognised as Errors.
The Errors are in fact US settings inc Band Plan, Custom seraches and Service seraches etc...
Don't Panic as these Errors wont effect what we are doing....

As I mentioned previously, to avoid the errors message - simply don't tick the 'Get Scanner Search Ranges' and 'Get Scanner Settings' box during uploading or downloading.

Click on the Close Tab.
Screen will then display the downloaded data base from the scanner as shown below - the data shown is from a 'Brand New' UBCD396XT and includes all the pre-set factory data as supplied by Uniden Australia.

At this point you can now modify - add - delete - or simply review all your data and settings.
There is a help Menu on the FreeScan Software if you 'run into trouble'.
You can also add talkgroup IDs and Names etc...

Important - It is strongly recommended that you save any files BEFORE you modify them!
I would suggest that you save the original Uniden file as soon as you download it - of course you can simply re-install it on the scanner by holding done the HOLD 2 and 9 Button while powering up the scanner, but saving the file on the computer is also handy so you can have a play with the data base and make 'mods' without having to upload the original file everytime you make a mistake.
Once your FreeScan file has been modified put your cursor over Scanner and then click on Upload Programming in the drop down menu.. as shown below.

A new screen will now open with the Title 'Send To Scanner' as shown below.

Now at this point for an example I only want to upload the SA GRN MOT system back to my scanner.
As I live in SA - I have no use for the other systems.
If you look closely at the picture above I have only 'ticked' the SA GRN MOT system in the Systems To Upload Box.
I would also suggest ticking the 'Erase All Systems & Settings' Box.
This will remove ALL the other systems on the scanner during the 'upload' leaving only the SA GRN MOT system once completed.

Important - I would also recommend only ticking the 'Send System Quick Key Status' and the 'Automatically Resume Scanning' Box.
To avoid any 'errors' again. Remember the software is US based.!

Once your selection has been confirmed - click on Start Upload.
Upload will take anywhere between a few seconds to a few minutes depending on how much data is being uploaded to the scanner.
Once completed screen will display a GREEN 'Tick' as shown below.

If the upload has been successful you will also notice there will be no Errors.
The software will also let you know the number of Systems, Groups and channels loaded into the scanner.

Once finished left click on the Close Tab.

Data has now been transferred back to the scanner - scanner should have automatically resumed scanning.

If not - Push The SCAN button.
As I only loaded the SA GRN MOT system back onto my scanner - this will be the only system the scanner will monitor.

If you have any trouble getting the scanner to actually start scanning with the new update - turn it off an on.. sometimes this seems to 're-boot' the scanner!

Due to the time it takes to create each individual 'Blog' on this site , I simply don't have the time to cover all the features of FreeSCAN.
I would suggest you simply 'play' with the software to get a better understanding of how it works.
I am more than happy to answer questions, but please be patient as finding time is the hardest part!
These instructions are to help the novice gain a better understanding of how to use and set up your scanner. While every effort is made to keep the instructions as simple and easy to understand as possible, sometimes mistakes are made. If you have any questions or advice regarding the instructions I have provided, please feel free to e-mail me at  and I will update these instructions ASAP.

Updated 15th July 2012

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