1)What are PL's or DPL's? I recently bought a bearcat BCT15, and on the lowband (and one VHF, but I think that is just because of the distance) frequencies I listen to I can hear the dispatcher's side of the conversation but not the radios on the other side. Is this because I didn't put in a PL or DPL?
1.5)Does anyone know how to program PL's or DPL's on the BCT15, I looked through much of the manual and the whole table of contents and didn't see it.
2)Also the antenna that I am using is a 10 or 15 dollar through the glass type meant to go on a car (its on my house window), is that sufficient for basic scanning? If not, what is (I don't want to drill holes through my house if possible and putting stuff on the roof is completely out of the question) and about how much do they cost?
Thanks for your help,
PL (private line) and DPL (digital private line) are methods to exclude a radio from receiving transmissions from others who are not using PL's. The PL signal is a low frequency that you cannot hear. If your scanner does not have PL capability, you will hear everything on the channel.
I do not know if the BCT-15 decodes PL tones.
If you are only hearing the dispatcher side, I would guess it is because the mobiles or portable are too far away and the system does not use a repeater. The dispatch antenna may be very close to you or on a tall building, tower, or hill.
If the agency you are listening too uses a repeater you should hear both side of the transmission.
The antenna should be outside and as high as you can get it above the ground. A glass mount like you are using is almost worthless for anything but nearby local transmissions. Use an antenna designed for base use instead of a car antenna. A quality outdoor installation can cost well over $100. However, a long piece of wire hanging out the window will probably work better than what you have now.
Repeaters on low band are very rare. Chances are you can't hear the other units because you are too far away. You can hear dispatch because they are talking off a huge radio tower. The other units are on the ground far away.
If you don't see anything about PL/DPL in the manual and on the buttons, it probably doesn't do it. That means you will always hear everything in range.
A car glass mount antenna is pretty poor on a car for any band. They are totally useless on low band and marginal on low and UHF. They are absolutely NOT designed to work with a thick multi-pane home window.
Thanks guys, that helps a lot, I will see if there is anything I can do about the antenna.
Also check out www.radioreference.com for a plethora of information concerning radios, scanners, etc.
Originally Posted by mtomek112