New RTL-SDR setup help

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Crazy8
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Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2014 2:20 am

New RTL-SDR setup help

Post by Crazy8 » Tue Feb 11, 2014 2:34 am

I am involved in Skywarn and have had my certification for 4 years now. I'm also being recruited as an ARES Emergency Coordinator for my county. I also have my ham radio license. I had a fellow Skywarn buddy show me his RTL-SDR setup a couple weeks ago which consisted of the needed software and the NooElec RTL-SDR USB w/antenna. He was telling me that if I got two of them on my laptop, that I could configure it as a scanner. Now I would love to have a scanner in my car, especially for only $40. So here are a few questions.

1. I have seen people with 2 USB dongles but they will have (1) NooElec and (1) Terratec. I am not familiar with RTL-SDRs (though I know what they are), but do I need one of each for what I am wanting to do, or will (2) of either one be fine?

2. How do I know if my county uses encryption, and if so how do I find out what they are using?

3. Is there any videos or tutorials on how to set up the two dongles as a scanner.

4. I drive a 2009 Crown Vic Interceptor that has plugged antenna holes in it already. Am I able to get a replacement antenna that would mount in one of the holes and that has the needed cable length to work with these?

Thanks much for the help.

rtlsdrblog
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Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2012 11:54 pm

Re: New RTL-SDR setup help

Post by rtlsdrblog » Tue Feb 11, 2014 10:53 am

Your friend is referring to scanning and following trunked radio

1) It will be fine to mix and match RTL-SDR dongles

2) Not sure how to find out other than asking the companies who provide that service in your country. If it's encrypted it's highly unlikely you'll ever be able to listen to those channels.

3) There's an excellent Unitrunker tutorial here for analogue http://public-xrp.s3.amazonaws.com/docs ... ptrunk.htm and here for digital https://sites.google.com/site/policescannerhowto/.

4) You can connect any antenna you want to the dongle, provided you buy the correct adapters.

Hope this helps!

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