Setting up a scan list by Scott Beers N1KMX
Some of the issues that people are concerned about:
1. Where is the ‘Scan’ button?
2. I created a scan list, but it doesn’t work
3. I get the ‘Scan List No Select’ error message
4. While scanning and the radio stops on an active channel.
You try to stop the scan by pressing the ‘Scan’ button or pressing the PTT button but it does not stay on the channel that the scan had stopped upon.
But rather it goes back to the channel you were on when you started the scan.
5. I want a channel to be in more than one scan list but that does not seem to be an option.
There are three things that you need to do to get the radio to scan properly.
1. Set one of the programmable buttons to be the ‘Scan’ button.
2. Create the scan list(s), add channels to the list, and adjust the settings for that scan list.
3. Go into each individual channel and identify which scan list that channel belongs.
BEFORE DOING ANYTHING TO DO WITH PROGRAMMING YOUR RADIO
READ THE CURRENT CODE PLUG FROM THE RADIO AND SAVE A BACKUP COPY OF IT SO THERE WILL BE LESS CRYING IF SOMETHING GOES AMISS.
Setting a programmable button as your scan button.
a. Open your CPS program
b. Along the left side find and click on ‘Optional Setting’
c. Find and click on the ‘Key Function’ tab
d. Choose which button you would like to be your dedicated ‘Scan’ button. This is personal preference, but this is what I use:
i. For my D878 I use the ‘PF1 Short’ button. This is the button immediately below the PTT button.
ii. For my D578 I use the ‘Short Key push (CH selector)’. This is the Channel selector knob.
e. Once you set one of the buttons, be sure to click on OK at the bottom to save your change.
If you just click on the X up in the corner, it probably won’t save.
Step one complete. You deserve a cup of coffee Make it de-cafe. This can be stressful enough without the caffeine
You did save a backup copy of your code plug before Step. Right?
Create the scan list(s) and adjust the settings for that scan list. These settings can be different for each scan list.
1) In the CPS, along the left side near the top, identify and click on ‘Scan List’.
The Scan List box will open showing a list of your scan lists. If you do not have any yet it will jut be blank lines.
I am going to start from the beginning and assume you don’t have a scan list yet.
If you already have one, you can use that one. Just make sure you review each point and adjust your current settings if needed.
2) Create a Scan List by double clicking on a blank line. A Scan List edit box will open.
3) In the top box labeled ‘Scan List Name’ create a name for this scan list. You may want to seriously consider naming it the same a zone
4) The big box on the left is a list of all the channels available to add to the scan list.
The big box on the right is the list of channels in this Scan List. In the middle between the two boxes are a left arrow and a right arrow.
a. Scroll up and down in the left box to find the channels you want in the Scan List.
Use the right arrow to move the channel into the Scan List box. You can use the left arrow to remove a channel from the Scan List.
b. You can organize the list by using the 4 buttons to the right of the right box.
The Up and Down buttons move the channel that you have selected up or down in the list
5) Once you have selected your channels, go below the two big boxes and set the various options.
a. The first 3 boxes allow you to decide if you want a priority channel(s) or not and what those channels are.
6) The ‘Revert Channel’ Option identifies what channel the radio will go to when you either press the PTT button or hit the ‘Scan’ button while it is in the process of scanning.
This is what usually annoys people when the radio ‘stops’ on a channel during scanning.
Everyone thinks something is wrong when it does not stay on the channel that it ‘Stopped Scanning’ on but rather it ‘Reverts’ back to the channel they were on when they started scanning.
In reality the radio is doing what it was told to do.
The default is to ‘Revert’ back to the ‘Selected’ channel.
By ‘Selected’ it means the channel you were on when you started scanning. The choices include:
b. Selected and Talkback
c. Last Called
d. Last Used
Selected as I said has it go back to the channel you were on when you started scanning.
This is VERY useful if for instance you are working and have a channel you are being dispatched on but you also want to scan at the same time.
This way if you get called, you do not need to scramble to get your radio off your hip and out of it’s case to set the channel to talk back to the dispatcher (or more importantly, your spouse). If you choose ‘Selected’ and also set this channel as your priority channel so you won’t miss any priority traffic.
Selected and Talkback is a hybrid mode.
It is similar to Selected but it also seems to stay on the channel that it stopped scanning on.
I don’t fully understand what magic it uses to determine this or maybe I misunderstand it but it seems to work for me.
This along with other settings further down makes it more user friendly. I am still testing the different options.
Last Called I have not used but it seems to indicate that it will revert to either the last channel you called someone on OR the last channel that someone called YOU. I’m not sure which.
Last Used I have not used either but it seems to indicate that it will revert to the last channel you were active on?
Not quite sure how that is different from ‘Last Called’ but I’m sure there is a difference.
7) Look Back Time A(s) and B(s) (The (s) indicates that the time is in seconds)
The Look Back Time is related to the priority channel(s) A & B.
It has to do with how often it looks back at the priority channel to see if it is busy.
8) Dropout Delay Time I’m still working on figuring the exact purpose of this and I will update this document when I do.
This appears to me to be another setting related to how long the radio waits after a scan related Dropout. I am Still working on this
9) Dwell Time(s) (The (s) indicates that the time is in seconds) This seems to determine how long the radio will stay on a channel after it stops scanning on a busy channel. I find putting this on 5 seconds gives me time to glance at the radio to see what channel it stopped upon and to decide if I want to stop the scan by pressing the ‘Scan’ Button.
10) Once you set all the options, be sure to click on OK at the bottom otherwise your choices will be forgotten.
Getting there. One more step (and some light reference material afterward)
Go into each individual channel and identify which scan list that channel belongs.
1) Now you need to go into each-and-every channel that you want in your scan list. (Yes, a bit tedious).
2) In the CPS, along the left side near the top identify and click on ‘Channel’. This will bring you into the list of your channels.
3) Scroll down till you get to one of your channels that you want in the scan list.
4) Double click on that channel.
5) Look for the box that says ‘Scan List’ (it’s about the 8th one down on the left side of the Channel box).
6) Open the drop-down list next to ‘Scan List’ and choose which scan list you want this channel to be in.
7) After selecting the scan list be sure to click on the OK box or your choice will be forgotten.
Each channel can only be entered into one scan list.
If you want a frequency to be in more than one scan list, you need to make a duplicate of that channel (and give it a different name).
I create very similar names and add a suffix to the channel, so I know which scan list it belongs to.
This makes it easier to keep it straight in your head.
For example If I want the Simplex Calling frequency in both my “Home Zone” scan list and my “Analog Radio” scan list.
I have to create two channels named: VHF Simplex hz VHF Simplex ar. Believe me, it helps to have the suffix when you are doing this.
I also have my scan list(s) names match the names of the zones.
Theoretically you can pick channels from different zones and put them all in one scan list.
However, as best I can figure out, when you press the scan button, the radio scans whichever scan list is associated with the channel you are on when you press scan.
If you mix and match channels from different zones into the scan lists, it can be tricky trying to remember which scan list applies.
Also I think if you are in (let’s say) Zone 1 and then press the scan button on a channel that is not in the scan list…it gets confused.
SO if you make the scan list exactly the same as the zone AND properly set each channel to the proper scan list it seems to work better.
Every now and then I may not want all the channels in a zone to be scanned.
When this is the case you need to make an exception to the “match the scan list to the zone” rule.
The problem with that is, if you happen to be on one of those channels you don’t want scanned when you press Scan you will get that
‘Scan List No Select’ message.
In that case you just need to make sure you are on one of the channels in the scan list before you press scan. Simple….right?
I really may not have this 100% right but I now rarely get the ‘Scan List No Select’ error message.
And if I do, I usually discover that I made a mistake and did not set it up correctly.
I agree this is something that could do with a re-vamping in the firmware but it kinda works if you follow these guidelines.
Scott Beers N1KMX