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The 7 Best Police Scans of 2022

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The best scanners for police are simple to use and set up. They provide clear audio quality across a wide range of frequencies.

We think the Uniden BC365CRS, our budget-friendly pick, is the best choice for most people.

You can stay up to date with local news and keep ahead of dangerous situations by using police scanners. A police scanner can be used to keep you informed about local news, weather updates, and information about natural disasters. You can also tune in to amateur radio stations. You can use the best police scanners as an alternative to standalone CB radios or radar detectors. Continue reading to learn more.

The RundownBest overall: Uniden BearTracker 885 AmazonBest Budget: UnidenBC365CRS at AmazonBest Home: UnidenHomePatrol-2 AmazonBest Analog: Uniden Bearcat BCD996P2 AmazonBest Vehicle: Uniden Bearcat BCD536HP AmazonBest Smartphone App : Smartest Apps 5 Radio Police Scanner @ Apple

In this Article

  • Our Picks
  • What to look for in a police scanner
  • Our Trusted Experts

Best Overall: Uniden BearTracker 885

Amazon

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  • Hybrid CB radio with trunk-tracking scanner
  • Is GPS available?
  • A noise-canceling microphone

What we don’t like

  • Expensive

The Uniden Beartracker-885, although it is one of the more expensive options on this list. It’s a fully-featured CB radio with digital trunk tracking and a police scanner. It includes GPS so that it can automatically select nearby channels from the database, which is updated every week. The scanner will do all the programming for you, so you don’t need to. You can read the LCD and get weather alerts and PA functionality.

This device is a great tool for safety and communications. It can alert you when there is a nearby public safety transmission. The BearTracker 885 features a noise-canceling microphone that permits clear conversations. It’s also compatible with wireless mics.

Uniden BC365CRS is the best budget

Amazon

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  • Affordable
  • Very good reception
  • Useful features

What we don’t like

  • A little bit of an old school

Uniden BC365CRS, a 500-channel scanner, can also be used as an alarm clock and an AM/FM radio. It can also serve as a broadcast radio and weather alert device. You can search for police and fire bands as well as aircraft, marine and amateur radio transmissions.

The BC365CRS requires three AA batteries. It also comes with an antenna and AC adapter. It is not recommended to be taken with you when on the move as this scanner is tabletop.

Your location and the type of transmissions that you are trying to receive will affect how well you can receive reception. Users report clear audio with radio transmissions and weather. However, this scanner is not able to pick-up transmissions from all agencies. You should verify compatibility with local agencies.

Uniden HomePatrol-2 is the best for home

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  • It is simple to use
  • Lightweight
  • Includes rechargeable batteries

What we don’t like

  • It doesn’t come with a power adapter

The Uniden HomePatrol-2 digital scanner is easy to use and has a pre-programmed data base. It’s a versatile scanner that can be used in any room of the house. The Uniden digital scanner is highly recommended. It can be set up in just minutes and has specialized features like quick record and playback. HomePatrol-2 does not require programming. Simply enter your zip code, and HomePatrol-2 will load all recognized police, fire and EMS channels within the area. It also includes radioreference.com channel information for Canada and the United States.

The HomePatrol-2 weighs just over a pound and is lightweight. The HomePatrol-2’s touch screen was a first in the industry. Uniden also offers rechargeable batteries that can last up to six hours. The Uniden comes with a USB charging cable that can be connected to any standard USB power brick.

Best Digital: Uniden BCD996P2

Amazon

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  • GPS compatibility
  • Feature rich
  • Included are many accessories

What we don’t like

  • Some features require paid upgrades

Although there aren’t many scanner brands (as you will see by a quick glance at this list), Uniden is a big player in the scanner market. Uniden’s BCD99P2 scanner is a great choice for both analog scanning and digital transmissions. The Uniden BCD99P2 will likely meet your requirements, even though it comes in a large package.

The BCD99P2 can perform location-based scanning and can also detect radio transmissions nearby. TrunkTracker V scanner offers continuous band coverage from 25 MHz up to 1.3 GHz. Add in 25,000 channels that are dynamically assigned and you will have enough options for all your local systems. This information is stored via the intuitive internal memory. The unit measures 11×3.75×8.5 inches and has easy-to-navigate controls.

Best Analog: Uniden Bearcat BC75XLT Handheld Scanner

Amazon.comView on YouTube View On Walmart View on EBay What We Like

  • Portable and compact
  • Close call to RF technology
  • Simplistic design

What we don’t like

  • Some areas receive less reception

Uniden’s BC75XLT can connect to military aircraft and public safety channels. This makes it a great choice for fans of analog scanners. The BC75XLT’s built-in search function is unrivaled. It quickly finds channels for air, police, fire, marine, weather, and many other services, making it a great pick-and-go scanner.

The scanner can store 300 channels or 30 total channels in 10 banks. It is easy to scan each channel for any current transmissions. The BC75XLT also features Close Call RF capture technology, which helps in identifying and detecting nearby transmissions even if they have not been pre-programmed into channels. The BC75XLT can be powered by two AA batteries and is lightweight. It also fits in your hand. It has excellent reception, provided you are in an area with strong signals.

Uniden BCD536HP is the best vehicle

Amazon.comView on YouTube View On Walmart View on EBay What We Like

  • Wi-Fi available
  • Remotely connects to Uniden Siren App
  • No programming is required

What we don’t like

  • Prices high

Uniden’s BCD536HP scanner has some of the most simple-to-program features on a scanner. The scanner will automatically recognize your zip code and begin scanning. You can even access the scanner via Wi-Fi from any place in your home or car using the Uniden siren app.

The LCD backlit keypad illuminates the unit so that you can easily access the controls and see it in dark conditions. The packaging contains a mounting bracket, home and auto power cords, aswell as a Wi-Fi dongle. The Uniden scanner is completely powered by the car’s battery or a power adapter. The BCD536HP is the first Uniden scanner to include the HomePatrol data. Simply enter a zip code, and you can listen in.

Best Smartphone App: Smartest apps 5-0 Radio Police scanner

iTunesView on Apple Microsoft View Google.com View What We Like

  • No cost
  • Other than your phone, there is no equipment required
  • It works!

What we don’t like

  • In-app purchasing

The utilitarian design of scanners has been the main focus, but there is a new and more powerful entry to the market. The 5-0 Radio police scanner app has been downloaded millions of times. You can listen to live feeds, including those from police/EMS/fire, military codes, and both train and aircraft feeds, in the background.

The scanner app can even detect your location to determine the relevant feeds that you want to follow. The app is currently free on both Google Play and Apple Store. A pro version offers 50,000 additional feeds.

Final Verdict

The BearTracker 885’s ( view at Amazon) GPS, CB radio and noise-canceling microphone make them a great choice for truckers and anyone else who spends a lot time on the road. Uniden Bearcat BC365CRS ( View at Amazon) offers a great handheld option. The free 5-0 Radio Police scanner app is available to you if you’re interested in scanning.

FAQ

  • Is Best Buy able to sell scanners for police?
    Best Buy sells police scanners from many brands, including Uniden, Whistler and Midland, Cobra and the affordable Insignia brand. There are many options available, including handheld and truck-mounted scanners.
  • Which handheld scanner is the most effective?
    The Uniden Bearcat B75XLT is our favorite handheld scanner. This handheld scanner can be connected to military aircraft and public safety channels. This analog scanner can quickly identify police officers, fire, mariners, weather, and other subjects. It can store 300 channels and 30 channels in 10 banks. The scanner only needs two AA batteries to function, making it an ideal portable option that you can take on the move.
  • Which scanner is the most effective for digital police?
    The Uniden is our top choice for digital police scanners. This scanner is a trusted brand that supports both digital and analog transmissions. The scanner can detect nearby transmissions and do location-based scanning. It supports continuous band coverage of 25MHz to 1.3GHz with 25,000 dynamically assigned channels. It’s an excellent option if you need to cover all bases.

What to look for in a police scanner

Portability

There are many options for police scanners. You can get them as handheld units, mobile scanners that you attach to your vehicle, or desktop scanners that don’t need to be carried around. A desktop scanner or mobile scanner is best if you are only going to be using your scanner in one place. A handheld scanner is a better option if you need more options.

Analog Vs. Digital

Compatibility between your scanner and the transmitters of your local police or other agencies is crucial to your ability to listen in on their transmissions. If your local agencies aren’t yet using digital scanners, you can still use an analog scanner to get the best compatibility.

“Depending on where you live, analog or digital would be appropriate. Some countries and provinces are moving to digital. You would need it depending on where you live.” Whitney Joy Smith, President, Smith Investigation Agency

Trunking is another feature that could affect your ability to receive messages on a scanner. Trunking is an important feature for scanners that do not support it. This means that scanners cannot tune into trunked systems. Radioreference.com provides a great resource to find out if analog signals are available in your area.

Additional Features

Are you looking for a simple scanner or one with more bells and whistles? You may find additional features such as an alarm clock, GPS or Wi-Fi functionality on some scanners.

 

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