Uniden SDS100 Scanner

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W1KNE
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#26 Post by W1KNE » 12 Jun 2018 00:37

So I will say, the overall digital performance of the scanner is amazing. Best sounding digital I have ever heard.

But there are a lot of threads and posts about the poor reception.

Hoping it's an improvement. This is the first scanner I have ever ordered "right out of the gate". So I expect there to be bugs, but these are starting to sound like design flaws. I hope they aren't.

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garys
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#27 Post by garys » 12 Jun 2018 09:38

As you noted earlier, there's a lot of noise over at RR. Much of it is from the usual suspects, so I don't give it that much credence. I have no doubt that there will be some bugs, hopefully firmware fixable ones, with the radio. As we learned from the x36HP series, these are very complex radios and bugs are going to be expected. I think that Uniden learned from that experience as well. If nothing else, they are likely to be more responsive to user input.

I find the form factor of the radios odd, to say the least. The larger battery compartment will change that. Not a deal breaker, but just odd.

I'm more and more thinking of waiting for the mobile version to come along. Assuming there is one. Then I can replace the 536HP in my truck with whatever model that ends up being, move that into the house, and sell the 536HP in the house. That one has no upgrades, so it will be the first one to go.

Time will tell.

W1KNE wrote:
12 Jun 2018 00:37
So I will say, the overall digital performance of the scanner is amazing. Best sounding digital I have ever heard.

But there are a lot of threads and posts about the poor reception.

Hoping it's an improvement. This is the first scanner I have ever ordered "right out of the gate". So I expect there to be bugs, but these are starting to sound like design flaws. I hope they aren't.

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Mark SNE Moderator
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#28 Post by Mark SNE Moderator » 12 Jun 2018 20:08

W1KNE wrote:
12 Jun 2018 00:37
So I will say, the overall digital performance of the scanner is amazing. Best sounding digital I have ever heard.

I found the digital audio on the HP-1 to be the best Uniden has to offer. Do you think this is better? Not sure if you ever owned a HP-1 or 2.

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W1KNE
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#29 Post by W1KNE » 12 Jun 2018 23:10

Mark SNE Moderator wrote:
12 Jun 2018 20:08
W1KNE wrote:
12 Jun 2018 00:37
So I will say, the overall digital performance of the scanner is amazing. Best sounding digital I have ever heard.

I found the digital audio on the HP-1 to be the best Uniden has to offer. Do you think this is better? Not sure if you ever owned a HP-1 or 2.
Owned a HP1, currently own an HP2, but I haven't listened to digital on the HP2. I'll check for you.

Tim
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#30 Post by Tim » 13 Jun 2018 17:52

My only Uniden is a 996P2 it's a good scanner. Receives P25 pretty clear. But to come out with a $650.00 scanner and to be having all these problems is a major disappointment if you ask me. Then on top of that you have to pay extra for DMR and ProVoice feature. Looks like a little more beta-testing should have been done.

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ScanBoston
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#31 Post by ScanBoston » 19 Jun 2018 07:52

Anymore updates on these units from some locals that have them? I don't read radio reference and am curious to learn more.

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trp
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#32 Post by trp » 20 Jun 2018 03:20

ScanBoston wrote:
19 Jun 2018 07:52
Anymore updates on these units from some locals that have them? I don't read radio reference and am curious to learn more.
I can tell you that the performance on Simulcast Trunking is VASTLY superior to any other scanners I have used previously including the Uniden BCD396XT, Uniden BCD996XT and the Whistler TRX-2. I had great difficulty picking up the RISCON statewide system in Rhode Island from my home in Fall River, MA. The only zone I could get reliably (most of the time) was the Providence zone even though I had very good signal strengths on the control channels for the South and North zones. I have an excellent Antenna Specialists MON731 roof-mounted antenna and I am located at a good elevation but that didn't help (actually made matters worse at times). I could get the South zone (sometimes) if I put a Radio Shack 800 MHz antenna on the scanner's BNC connector and moved the scanner around my house until I found a "sweet spot." North zone reception was very rare no matter what I tried.

In contrast the SDS100 is receiving all 3 RISCON zones with excellent digital decode while sitting on top of my desktop computer's case and with just the Uniden stock antenna that came with the scanner. Once in a while I will get some digital "garble" but typically when I hear that I also hear the dispatcher say "please repeat" because they got the same digital garble that I received. As far as Simulcast performance is concerned I find the SDS100 to be an outstanding and excellent performer.

As with any brand-new product early-adopters can expect some growing pains and the SDS100 is no exception. One issue that has come up is that the supplied battery that comes with these initial-release units only lasts about 5 hours. Uniden realized that shortcoming during production but didn't want to hold up the release of the new scanner to its customers. What they have done for a fix is to produce a higher capacity Lithium battery that will last 8 hours instead of 5 and it is expected to be out around August (thereabouts). The nice thing is that they are going to send that new battery (and the larger battery door cover) for FREE to all of the early-adopters of the scanner. You also get to keep the original battery and original battery door cover thus giving you 2 batteries. IMHO that is an incentive to buy the scanner right now.

This new SDS100 scanner has a lot of processing power and thus draws a lot of current which produces heat. Charging the Lithium battery in the scanner while the scanner is on produces some additional heat. I have found the scanner case to get warm at times but not hot. One poster on Radio Reference used an infrared thermometer to check case temperatures at various spots on the SDS100 and found one spot on the case to measure 125 degrees. I believe that was while the battery was being charged and the scanner was on. It is unknown if heat will be a problem with the long-term reliability of the scanner. It has been posted on RR that an external battery charger is expected for the SDS100 in the future (perhaps with the release of the new/larger battery?).

Because this scanner is "water-resistant" the SMA antenna connector is not "standard." To make the radio water-resistant the SMA antenna connector has a plastic collar around it (along with an O-ring on the stock antenna) which is designed to help keep water out of the radio chassis. Because of this design parameter multiple users on Radio Reference have reported that standard SMA antennas will not "fit" or "fully seat" on the SDS100's antenna connector. I have personally not encountered that problem because I have only used the stock antenna thus far. The scanner also comes with an SMA-to-BNC adapter so that you can use a BNC antenna (like the Radio Shack/Remtronix 800 MHz antenna or an external mobile or rooftop antenna) with the SDS100.

Because this scanner is brand-new (just started shipping to retail customers the first week of June) a custom carrying case for the SDS100 is not currently available from either Uniden or any other aftermarket source. Scanner Master has stated that they are waiting for the release of the new larger battery/battery door and then will have the SDS100 measured/fitted in order to have carrying cases manufactured by their case supplier. In the meantime you will have to be careful with your SDS100 if you take it out and about with no carrying case to protect it from scratches, scrapes and potential falls.

I have no regrets about buying this radio as an early adopter as I mainly purchased it for Simulcast reception and it has exceeded my expectations in that regard. Contrary to popular belief the SDS100 is still currently available from various retailers as I type this review but they are in tight supply. If you want one the lowest price is $649.99 as that is the lowest retail selling price currently being allowed by Uniden. (FYI the MSRP is $699.99.)

As of right now, June 20th at 03:20 AM EDT, you can purchase the SDS100 from these retailers:

The Ham Station $649.99 with FREE shipping (currently 3 in stock): http://hamstation.com/shopping/index.ph ... ts_id=5297

Ham Radio Outlet $649.99 with FREE shipping (Salem, NH only store out of the 13 HRO stores currently showing stock): https://www.hamradio.com/detail.cfm?pid=H0-016159

Zip Scanners $649.99 with FREE shipping (currently in stock): https://www.zipscanners.com/uniden-sds1 ... anner.html
trp
RCA 16S400, Regency HX1500, PRO-2006, PRO-197, TRX-2, BC950XLT, BCD996XT, BCD396XT, SDS100, Motorola Minitor II, Antenna Specialists MON731

jbella
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#33 Post by jbella » 20 Jun 2018 21:30

Great review, thank you.

I was going to wait until the battery fix, but....duh, yeah having 2 batteries seems a better idea.

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trp
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#34 Post by trp » 21 Jun 2018 09:02

I have some information to add to my SDS100 review posted above in post #35. There are currently 3 optional upgrades available for purchase for the SDS100 and they are ProVoice, DMR/MotoTRBO and NXDN. The easiest and cheapest way to add any of those upgrades is to purchase them directly from Uniden by going to my.uniden.com after you register your new scanner at that same webpage. The cost for ProVoice is $50, DMR/MotoTRBO is $60 and NXDN is $60. After your purchase they send you a key number that you then enter into your scanner and it activates the upgrade that you purchased.

One thing to watch out for is that some dealers are adding their own additional fee to purchase the upgrades through them when you purchase your new SDS100. Bearcat Warehouse and Scanner Master are charging $75.00 each for the 3 upgrades and Zip Scanners is charging $99.99 each for the 3 upgrades. Those are some pretty hefty "convenience fees" for something that you can easily purchase yourself directly from Uniden and save some money on an already-pricey $650 scanner.

NOTE: Uniden was offering the NXDN upgrade for only $30 (half-price) as of a few weeks ago because NXDN had not yet been fully integrated into their Sentinel programming software. If you want NXDN for your new SDS100 (or BCD436HP/BCD536HP for that matter) and you can still get it for $30, you should jump on it right away as it is a limited-time offer from Uniden and probably will never come back once the price goes up to $60.
trp
RCA 16S400, Regency HX1500, PRO-2006, PRO-197, TRX-2, BC950XLT, BCD996XT, BCD396XT, SDS100, Motorola Minitor II, Antenna Specialists MON731

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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#35 Post by trp » 24 Jun 2018 22:12

As a followup to my post #35 above regarding a carrying case for the SDS100, I have some interesting information to pass along. A member (budevans) at Radio Reference has posted that his Scanner Master soft leather case for the Uniden BCD436HP fits his new SDS100 scanner perfectly including the cutouts on the left and right sides of the case. Here's a link to his RR post including a picture of the SDS100 in the Scanner Master BCD436HP soft leather case: http://forums.radioreference.com/uniden ... ost2954029

Here's a link to the Scanner Master soft leather case for the BCD436HP ($34.95 plus shipping): http://www.scannermaster.com/BCD436HP_U ... 581860.htm

For those concerned about the new larger battery/battery door for the SDS100 that will be introduced in the next few months, I would imagine that the BCD436HP soft leather case would have enough "give" to accommodate the slightly larger battery size but YMMV.
trp
RCA 16S400, Regency HX1500, PRO-2006, PRO-197, TRX-2, BC950XLT, BCD996XT, BCD396XT, SDS100, Motorola Minitor II, Antenna Specialists MON731

kenny
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#36 Post by kenny » 11 Jul 2018 17:33

HRO in Salem has them in stock. I picked one up today along with another Austin Spectra antenna

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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#37 Post by Mark SNE Moderator » 11 Jul 2018 22:09

Kenny,

How about another review of this scanner?

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trp
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#38 Post by trp » 12 Jul 2018 01:39

If anyone is interested in purchasing a new SDS100, there is currently inventory available from many dealers with some dealers reporting that they have already received their third allocation/shipment from Uniden. The following dealers are currently reporting the SDS100 as being in-stock on their websites as of 01:30 AM EDT on July 12th and all are selling it for the "minimum advertised price" of $649.99 with one exception as noted below:

Universal Radio
Scanner Master
Zip Scanners
Bearcat Warehouse
Ham Radio Outlet (stock at 10 of their 13 retail stores)
FactoryOutletStore.com (price is $669.99)
webtron-x.com (direct on their own website and also on eBay and Amazon)
trp
RCA 16S400, Regency HX1500, PRO-2006, PRO-197, TRX-2, BC950XLT, BCD996XT, BCD396XT, SDS100, Motorola Minitor II, Antenna Specialists MON731

kenny
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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#39 Post by kenny » 12 Jul 2018 14:35

First the bad,
I'm not a fan of the proprietary battery pack, I forsee problems in a couple of years much like Uniden's earlier entries.
I can also foresee this having to be shipped back to Uniden for a speaker replacement much like my 396 and 436.
VHF performance is kind of poor, UHF is better, 800 is very good, particularly the reception and sound from the 700 overlay.
I do like the fact that you do not have to program a conventional P-25 frequency as a single channel trunk system to receive UID's.
I purchased the DMR and NXDN upgrades, appears to work well in my limited time experimenting with it.

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Re: Uniden SDS100 Scanner

#40 Post by magellanous » 17 Jul 2018 16:23

I did end up purchasing an SDS100 after making a promise to myself that if I decided to keep it, I'd have to sell off the Home Patrol 2 that I don't often use. I also figured that if I did it early, I'd be able to take advantage of the free extended battery.

I ran it next to the 436 for several days, both using the radio shack 800mhz antenna. It missed a lot of what the 436 was picking up and it was sometimes also dropping a transmission in the middle. When my basement workshop, the 436 definitely did a better job grabbing weak signals. However, the firmware that was released not long after seemed to fix the drop out issue and improve the reception. I also increased the SDS100 wait time to two seconds per a RR suggestion which also seemed to help.

On VHF, it's better than I expected. I'd say it falls between the 436 and my BR330. I'm pulling in the MV buses and police departments pretty well with a small magmount in the house.

I will say that I think the speaker on the 436 is nicer to my ears. The SDS seems to have extra treble which means when an alert tone goes out, it sounds like it rattles the speaker. The treble also makes static less pleasant to listen to. Over all the volume is louder.

I'm happy with SDS100 and I think there will be a lot of opportunities to expand the features in the future. I am sure they will keep improving it.

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