Last Updated on November 10, 2020

Whether you’re a police officer or a civilian interested in your area’s local activities, you can always benefit from having a good quality police scanner. The Uniden BCD996P2 scanner is one of the best scanners amongst its peers. With notable features like ‘band scope mode,’ number tagging of channels, and a large display, the scanner radio helps keep track of all the activities in your area.

The review contains:

  • The pros and cons of the phase 2 scanner radio along with its features 
  • An in-depth review of BCD996P2 covering all major features 
  • F.A.Q.

Product Dimensions: 11 x 3.75 x 8.5 inches 
Product Weight: 5.9 Pounds
Batteries: 1 Li-ion battery (included)
Supported Systems: APCO phases 1 and 2, E.D.A.C.S., Motorola, and LTR trunking systems 
Number of Channels: 25000 channels that are dynamically allocated with digital mobile trunk tracker V
Coverage Frequencies: 25 MHz to 1.3 GHz except for UHF TV and Cellular 
Included Accessories: The police scanner, APP form, FREQ form, Antenna, Mounting bracket, USB cable, Ac adapter.

Any review concerning the BCD996P2 would say one thing for sure, it is a dream gadget for any veteran. The novice who would find the radio to be complex comes with a detailed owner’s manual for its operation.

Our Opinion of BCD996P2

Uniden is one of the best when it comes to making a police scanner and ham radio. The radios and digital scanners that they make work great for long-range communications and monitoring. The BCD996P2 from the company is a staple statement of their excellence in making a reliable digital scanner. The great scanner can scan and pick up all digital signals with its antenna unless it is encrypted. As any good quality scanner with multiple channels does not come cheap, we need to verify whether the BCD996P2 is worth the investment. 

The front panel hosts all the keys, knobs, and the display. But one thing to note that the knobs perform more than one function (a different function for rotating them than pressing them). The 7 different color options for the display on the BCD996P2 would be an excellent feature to have on every radio. In addition to using it as a police scanner, you can easily use it as ham radio. 

Programming 

Setting up the system with the programming software is easy. Unlike many other scanners, Uniden BCD996P2 cannot be set up only using your zip code; you’ll need the software. TO program your scanner, you need to connect it to your computer using the cable and customize and set the frequencies and the channels you need. Make sure you know which frequency and Channel to use, as not to violate any privacy policy.

Band Scope Mode and Multi-site Trunking 

The mode notifies the user about every available signal’s strength by representing it as a bar graph. The mode can be handy as it helps you identify the strongest channels at a glance. But to make this mode useful, make sure you have sorted out the channel programming. 

Another excellent feature of the radio is the multi-site trunking. The feature lets you share the I.D.s of systems across various sites and independently enable or disable them. 

System or Channel Tagging  

The tagging feature on the BCD996P2 lets you quickly switch to a specific system or channel by assigning them with individual numbers. The tagging feature is also useful to tag close calls generated through close call auto store. 

The Close call Rf capture technology quickly lets the scanner know about any radio transmission in the nearby area. Not to interrupt any active transmission, the close call D.N.D. Scans for the activities between channel reception. 

WHAT WE LIKED

  • The Uniden scanner can be easily installed in your car with the provided mounting bracket.
  • The sound quality of phase 2 digital scanner is excellent 
  • G.P.S. and 25 000 channels are easy to scan with the dynamic memory system and location-based scanning.
  • The Uniden BCD996P2 is equipped with advanced features like close call R.F. capture, APCO P25 Phase II system support, and more. 
  • Excellent build quality with a vibrant display infront of the scanner
  • You can quickly determine the system settings with the DCS/CTCSS Rapid Decode. (1)
  • The BCD996P2 comes with a 1-year warranty.

WHAT WE DIDN’T LIKE

  • The Complex design of the scanner means it has a steep learning curve for beginners.
  • Programming the Speaker can be a bit difficult. Also, you need to get the programming software separately. (2)
  • The Speaker is located on the scanner’s underside to silence the output if not appropriately placed. 

How to Choose the Perfect Police Scanner?

When in the market for a new scanner radio, you need to consider many things to buy the right product for you. Just like any other electronic product, there are many specifications and features associated with scanners. With so many new scanners on the market, the decision-making is challenging.

Here are some tips on how to choose the best scanner for you:

Type of Bands 

As we mentioned in the review, there are various scanners available on the market. The scanners can be Analog, Digital, or Dual-band. Choose according to the type of systems you are trying to scan. If your local P.D. uses a digital system, you need to buy either a digital scanner. To ensure maximum versatility, you can always go for dual-bands.

Form Factor

It is crucial to determine where you want to put your radio and buy accordingly. There are many kinds of scanning radio, Handheld, Mobile, and Desktop. If you’re going to carry around your device, you might go for a handheld one. On the other hand, if you want a powerful device and superior range, you might want to consider the desktop version. (3)

Weather and Emergency Broadcast Coverage

You can never be sure when the next emergency pops up, so it is crucial to have a radio equipped with emergency and weather channels. For police scanners, features like S.A.M.E. alerts are useful to have. If you’re in a region known for extreme weather conditions buying scanners with useful alert features is smart.

Legality

Legality is an important feature to consider when buying such a device. There are many illegal frequencies that you don’t want your radio to broadcast. Depending on the area you’ll be operating the scanner in, your scanner might not be legal to use. You need to verify if the scanners you’re buying are legal in the area of operation. 

Prioritize Local Signals

The radios, in general, operate on various bands. You should make sure the new one you’re buying prioritizes the local channels. Your decision should be based on whether the radio offers good quality local broadcasts as they would be the primary transmissions you want. 

F.A.Q

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Is the Model Preprogrammed?

No, the Uniden BCD996P2 is not preprogrammed. You have to program it yourself. 

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Can you go back to factory settings on this scanner?

Yes, You can quickly go back to the factory settings and erase all your settings.

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Is the BNC connector for the antenna male connector or female connector?

The BNC antenna connector on the BCD996P2 is a female end.

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Is it just a digital receiver? or It can also operate using Analog Signals?

The radio from Uniden operates on both Analog and Digital Signals.

Final Thoughts

As we saw in the review, the Uniden BCD996P2 is an excellent police scanner with a good range and works with many frequencies. With a name like Uniden, you know you’re getting the right quality product. 

One thing to note, the scanner is an easy pick for veterans but can be challenging to operate for novices. If you’re new to scanners and radios, you’ll need some time to learn all the functions.

That being said, Uniden is offering an excellent product that is powerful and reliable and is worth the price tag it comes with. 

You may also check Midland GXT1000VP4 Review and our learning articles.

References

(1) DCS/CTCSS Rapid Decode – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQLzfvqkA7M
(2) Programming – https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/programming-101/0/steps/43783
(3) Desktop – https://www.computerhope.com/jargon/d/desktop.htm