Uniden-Bearcat® BCD396XT Digital Scanner

A Scanner Master Ultimate Review

Copyright 2009, Richard Carlson/Scanner Master Corporation


The Uniden Bearcat BCD396XT is the follow-up to Uniden's premier handheld scanner, the BCD396D, which has been discontinued. The 'XT has more memories (up to 25,000 channels!) and many new features while retaining the 396D's small form factor and price. The BCD396XT directly competes with the GRE PSR500 and Radio Shack Pro106.

The BCD396XT adds such new features as allowing up to 500 talkgroups per trunked system (compared to 200 for the 396D), NAC decoding, Fire Toneout Search and GPS Support. Some of these features have never been available on any scanner before.

The BCD396XT uses Uniden's Dynamic Memory Architecture (DMA) instead of fixed Banks and Channels. This method of programming was introduced a few years back with the BC246T and is also used on such scanners as the BCD396T and BCD996T. While it has a similar effect as the GRE "Memory Object" system, the Uniden method is somewhat easier to fathom and program for many people. DMA allows you to program as many Channels, Systems and Groups as you can until the memory runs out instead of locking you into a fixed amount of banks and channels.

The radio resembles the BCD396D but has a silver faceplate. Otherwise the general layout is identical, with a single multi-function control knob on the top, 16 button keypad on the front and 2 side buttons on the left side. The right side has the same computer interface jack and power jack, the earphone jack is on the top between the multi-function knob and the antenna.

Also in the box is the BNC-SMA adaptor that was introduced with the BC330 and 396 scanners, the same belt holder, antenna, serial programming cable and wrist strap as the older radios. The owner's manual for the radio is contained on a CD-ROM, in PDF format. There is no printed manual.

For more information and to purchase the BCD396XT scanner please visit Scanner Master.


•25000 Channels

•TrunkTracker IV

•Close Call

•100 Quick Keys

•Multi-Colored Display

•Alpha Tagging

•Fire Tone-Out

•Band Scope


•Compact Size

•Audio AGC

•Search with Scan

•PC Control

•NAC Decoding


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