From The RadioReference Wiki

Welcome to the Pro-96 FAQ article. Anything written here also applies to the Pro-2096. This article will be used to introduce new users to these scanners, document any hints or kinks not mentioned in the manuals and other topics. This FAQ cannot grow without your support; if there's a topic missing from this article, please consider adding it. Note that anything in blue is a link.

What are V Folders?

V (for 'Virtual') folders contain data for all 50 states loaded from the RadioReference database. However, several changes have occurred since the initial release of these scanners, but you can update them.

Common Questions and Answers

  • Can I log and record using the computer interface?
    • No, this is not possible. The firmware does not have the instructions for allowing functions like this. Only uploads and downloads are possible
  • Can I record audio from the speaker/earphone jack?
    • Certainly, but you will not be able to log items like frequencies or talkgroups that had audio on them due to firmware issues as mentioned above. See our Recording Software and Tips article for popular packages.
  • Will the PRO-96/2096 cover UHF milair?
    • No, not out of the box. The use of Win96 or ARC96 will expand the frequency coverage, but since the scanner was not designed to cover this band initially, sensitivity varies widely from unit to unit. One unit might have decent sensitivity, another be as deaf as a post. This does not indicate that the unit is defective.
  • Will the PRO-96/2096 trunktrack in the 380/700 MHz band?
    • No; the trunking tables have no code in them to handle trunking in this band. You may be able to hear audio if it's not encrypted, but systems in this band cannot be trunktracked with these scanners. It is possible, however, to gather information on these systems only if they are running a control channel at 9600 baud using the Pro96Com utility.
  • Will the PRO-96/2096 decode the new Phase II systems coming online?
    • These systems are identified by Project 25 Phase II in the System Type in the database. Such systems cannot be received by these scanners.
  • Will the PRO-96/2096 survive the Rebanding process?
    • Yes, using custom tables applied via software. See the ARC96 and Win96 articles.
  • My display went blank (or hard to read even with backlight on). What can I do to fix this?
    • This is a common issue with the ribbon connector wiggling loose
    • Also see this Thread on this subject

How Do I Reset the PRO-96/2096 Back to Factory Defaults?

  • NOTE: This procedure has no effect on the DSP version

1. Turn off the scanner, then turn it on again. The scanner briefly displays the DSP boot version, then the WELCOME screen.

2. Press "0" (zero) while on the WELCOME screen. The scanner displays:

System Tests
Select Test
Exits if no
Key Press

3. Press "1" (one). The scanner displays:

Factory Init
Erase Memory
ENTER if Yes
CL to Exit

4. Press ENTER. The scanner displays:

Clr Main Mem
V-Scan is OK
Please Wait

Do Not Turn Off the scanner until the initialization is complete.

When the initialization is complete, M000 appears on the top of the display.

Bank 0 Ch00 appears on the bottom line.

Thanks to RadMarv for the procedure

Updating the DSP/Firmware

To find the DSP/Firmware updates, ask on the RadioReference Radio Shack Forum

DSP APP Firmware Version U1.4 provides the following enhancement to your PRO-96/2096 Digital Trunking Scanner:

  • Improved digital decoding:

After upgrading to DSP Application firmware version 1.3 (DSP-APP 1.3), some users reported increased instances of the scanner failing to decode the beginning of digital transmissions on certain systems. DSP-APP 1.4 improves the performance of initial digital voice decoding and should result in fewer instances of undecoded digital noise at the beginning of transmissions. Under certain circumstances, such as when weak or distorted signals are present, the scanner may occasionally fail to decode the beginning of a digital transmission even after upgrading to DSP-APP 1.4.

If a radio consistently fails to reliably decode digital transmissions, users are advised to reposition the radio, utilize antennas designed for the specific band being monitored, such as the Radio Shack 20-283 800 MHz BNC antenna, or take other steps to improve the quality of the received signals.

  • DSP upgrade patch version U1.3 issued 08-17-2006

New in this version DSP APP Firmware Version U1.3 provides the following enhancements to your PRO-96/2096 Digital Trunking Scanner:

  • Improved decoding of digital audio on the Detroit, Michigan Project 25 Trunked Radio System The DSP digital decoder was fine tuned to maximize performance when used on the Detroit, Michigan and similar Project 25 trunked radio system.
  • Improved digital decoding of weak or distorted digital signals The enhancements that were made to the digital decoder to provide improved digital performance on systems like the Detroit Project 25 system also provide noticeable decoding improvement on all supported digital system types in areas with weak digital signals, or digital signals that are distorted due to multipath or simulcast .

  • Verifying the firmware version

You can verify the version of DSP firmware currently active in the PRO-96 by pressing the 3 key during the “Welcome” screen. The scanner will display firmware versions for three separate firmware elements. The second version, “DSP APP”, is the only element that is upgraded.

  • Reverting to the factory DSP firmware version:

If for any reason you decide that you would like to revert to the original factory DSP version (F1.x), you may do so by pressing 0, then CLEAR, then ENT during the “Welcome” screen. The radio will then ask you to power cycle. Note that this will permanently remove the upgrade from the DSP flash memory. You can reload the upgrade as many times as you like using the PRO96U1x.EXE upgrade utility.