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Radio Scanner Guide


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Part 3: Monitoring the Action

What are you interested in hearing with your radio scanner? Police, Fire, Local Government, Businesses? Commercial Jetliners? Military Aircraft? Marine? Trains? Read more about these services and what scanner category you will need to hear them in this section. 

The vast majority of local government - police, sheriffs, fire departments, and more - and business users are communicating between mobile vehicles or people. Such services are called "Land-Mobile" services. For listening to land-mobile services, what radio scanner you buy will depend on what type of system the agencies used by the agencies to which you listen - Conventional or Trunked and Analog or Digital. If you are interested in hearing any land-mobile services, follow that link below for more information.

On the other hand, if you are interested in hearing civilian aircraft, military aircraft, marine, or taking your scanner to the races, these services all use specific frequency ranges and have different scanner requirements. Follow each of the text or picture links in the table below for information specific to those topics. You may want to read all of the topics below.

Each topic will tell you which of the 6 Scanner Categories contain the radio bands and other features you need to monitor that service.

Part 3A:
(Police, Fire, Business, etc)

Police Car

Part 3B:

Ship / Boat

Part 3C:
Civilian Aircraft

Commercial Airplane

Part 3D:
Military Aircraft

Military Airplane

Part 3E:
Auto Racing

Stock Car Racing


Part 2: Technical Tidbits

Skip Ahead to Part 4: Table of Listening Topics and Scanner Categories

Part 3A: Land Mobile

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