Uniden Home Patrol Scanner Review – A Scanner I Use Daily
Product: Uniden Home Patrol Scanner Review
Price: $390.00 (Home Patrol 1) and $529.99 (Home Patrol 2)
Cheapest Place to Buy Home Patrol 1: Amazon
Cheapest Place to Buy Home Patrol 2: Amazon
Features: Digital APCO P25 Phase I and II (Depending on Model), Easy to Use Touch Screen Interface, Comes Fully Loaded With U.S. and Canada Frequency Databases, Eliminates Any Need for Programming
My Rating: 9.5 out of 10
Why I Often Use My Uniden Home Patrol Over My Other Scanners
I have been scanning for over 25 years now. Since I enjoy this so much, I believe in only purchasing and using exceptional scanners and products.
With that said, I just had to do a Uniden Home Patrol scanner review.
Here is my Youtube review and walkthrough of just how easy it is to set up and use the Uniden Home Patrol 1.
I personally own the Uniden Home Patrol 1. I use it every single day, and I often use it in place of my other police scanners. Why you ask?
Because the Home Patrol is easy to use and loaded with useful features…
This scanner is simply exceptional and unprecedented in the way that it is designed and constructed.
The touchscreen menu driven interface I feel is a must. It is as intuitive to operate as your smart phone.
Uniden has definitely taken the stance here of why make something more complicated than it needs to be…
And I agree.
This is exactly why I reach for my Home Patrol most often.
Here are the Features I Feel Set the Home Patrol Apart From Other Scanners
- Easy to operate touchscreen means no more trying to remember complicated button sequences
- Built-in frequency databases means NEVER having to spend time programming your scanner
- You can record breaking events with this scanner without any other hardware or software
- No add-on software needs to be purchased for programming
- You Never have to spend time updating or modifying text tags and labels again
- Different adjustable backlighting levels allow for visibility in different ambient lighting conditions
- Add on GPS unit allows scanner to automatically reprogram as you change locations
- Rechargeable batteries, AC adapter and stand allows for use as a desktop, or a mobile unit
- Digital Audio is Crisp and Clear
- Performs wonderfully on digital APCO P25 systems.
- Sensitivity allows me to occasionally pick up signals 75 to 100 miles away, with the included antenna!
- When traveling, no need to use software to reprogram, the systems for the whole U.S. and Canada are built-in!
- Convenient size allows for small foot print. Put in your pocket, or leave it on your desk
Here are the Features I Feel the Home Patrol Could Improve On
- Not compatible with Macintosh computers
- The GPS used is an add-on GPS unit, not built-in
- Database driven programming limits your ability to make your own updates, especially in real time.
- The SMA Antenna connector requires an additional coupler in order to use BNC Antennas
Why You May Choose the Home Patrol Over Other Scanners
You Are Literally Up And Running in Minutes
Have you ever wanted to just open up a package and just be able to use the item within about 2 or 3 minutes without reading a bunch of complicated manuals written in technical gibberish?
Well then. Look no further than the Uniden Home Patrol…
The true benefit that you get from the Uniden Home Patrol is a fully loaded digital police scanner in an intuitive and easy to use package.
The touchscreen menu-driven Home Patrol is as easy to use as your smart phone. Simply pull the scanner out of the box and you are nearly ready to start scanning your neighborhood.
No Manuals, No Programming, Means No Complications
This in itself eliminates hours of reading through manuals and having to memorize complicated button sequences to operate and customize your scanner.
I had my unit out of the packaging and up and running in minutes.
All that I had to read was a one-sheet quick reference containing only a few steps.
It really doesn’t get much easier than that in the world of police scanners.
Another benefit that the home patrol offers over other scanners is the ability to bypass the programming and radio systems learning curve.
When you buy some other digital scanner models, you often have to get add-on software to program the unit, and you have to make sure certain settings are correct to select the proper radio systems, and to track the systems correctly.
This is not an issue with the home patrol. No need to get into the guts of radio system jargon.
The Home Patrol is akin to plug and play in the PC world.
Home Patrol Has You Up and Running In a Few Easy Steps
With the Home Patrol, this could really not be any easier.
Here is literally all it takes…
1. You take the Home Patrol out of the box.
2. Load the database software onto your PC.
3. Synch the Home Patrol with the database using the supplied USB to micro-USB cable.
4. Enter your zip code on the Home Patrol unit.
That is really about it…
Uniden has made this the least complicated of any scanner on the market, in my opinion.
If you wish, you are then free to learn about radio systems and other more complicated scanner related knowledge at your own pace.
The Difference Between Home Patrol 1 and Home Patrol 2
Here is the kicker…
As far as I can tell, there are really only two main differences between the Home Patrol 1 and the Home Patrol 2.
- The Home Patrol 1 only covers APCO P25 Phase 1 support.
- The HomePatrol 2 supports APCO P25 Phase 1, as well as, APCO P25 Phase 2 TDMA.
This will be the future that most public radio systems will be headed.
Additionally, the Home Patrol 1 contains a 2GB MicroSD card for storing favorites lists and for recording transmissions.
However, the Home Patrol 2 contains a 4GB MicroSD also for storing favorites lists and for recording.
Beyond this, from what I can tell, not a whole lot of earth shattering features differs between the two radios.
So Why Did I Purchase The Home Patrol 1 Over The Home Patrol 2?
This was an easy choice for my situation.
I knew from my own research that both scanners are solid in both performance and features for the purposes that I wanted to use the radio.
I live near the border in southern California, so I know that it takes the U.S. and Mexico many years to agree on re-banding changes, legal issues and such before Phase II TDMA will be implemented in my area.
I also knew that it was not likely that I was going to be recording a lot of audio from my scanner for archives, so the smaller MicroSD was not a problem for me either.
This confidently allowed me to choose the Home Patrol 1 over the Home Patrol 2.
Before purchasing one radio over the other, I would head over to radioreference.com to see what systems are currently in use in your area.
This is a very friendly scanner and radio enthusiast community and the members are always happy to help.
So it would be a good idea to find out from those in the know in your area whether or not APCO P25 Phase II is likely to be coming to your area within a year or two.
If so, you may want to purchase the Home Patrol 2 as you will get many years of use out of that scanner.
If APCO P25 Phase I is currently being used in your area, and Phase II is a long way off, you could purchase the Home Patrol 1 for use now, and buy a newer scanner on the market at a later time.
It really is up to you as both Home Patrol models are solid in my opinion.
The Bottom Line…
The Uniden Home Patrol is a great first scanner for newbies given its easy to use and has a straight-forward menu driven interface.
It will get a first timer up and scanning the neighborhood in minutes.
For the seasoned scanner hobbyist such as myself, this scanner is my go to piece of equipment because it is dependable, portable, and simple to use.
I never have to remember any button sequences as everything is easily accessed from the menu.
I simply love that part.
The scanner can be a great mobile unit or a designated desktop model…
And it travels well as you can enter the zip code of your new location in, or you can use the add-on GPS unit that will do this for you automatically.
I did not purchase the GPS unit, so I cannot speak to any experiences with that piece of equipment.
Personally, I do not think the GPS is necessary as it is easy to type in whatever zip code you are in, over spending the extra money on the GPS add-on.
If you are looking for a solid, dependable, easy to use digital scanner…
…Then the Home Patrol really is a solid scanner for a great price.
It really is one of the best performing and easiest to use scanners that I have owned, over the last 25 years.
I use my unit daily and have never regretted the purchase.
If you own a Home Patrol 1 or Home Patrol 2, feel free to leave a comment below about your experience with the unit.
If you would like more information on the scanner, you can ask any questions you have below as well.
I look forward to helping out in any way I can. In the mean time, keep scanning!