posted on May, 10 2004 @ 10:01 AM
Found on a website(rather outdated):
All you need to know to monitor Cell Phones
First off I would like to tell you that listening to any wireless phone conversation is now illegal. New laws were passes back in the 90's to keep
manufactures from making and selling scanners capable of receiving the cellular band. I don't care what you have been told, it is illegal to listen
to ANY phone call. It's quite legal to own a cell capable scanner which was made before the laws were passed but it's illegal to listen to cellular
phone calls. Two totally different things. Its kind of like owning a legal gun, but it's illegal to kill someone just cause you want to.
Ok, down to the good stuff! First off you need to know that analogue cell calls are in the 869.040 to 893.970 MHz range. This is the tower side of the
conversation. The actual cell phones transmit in the 824.040 to 848.970 MHz range. There is a 45 MHz split in the phone and the tower. You can hear
the tower side for about 5 square miles and the phone itself for only about a mile or two at best. Lets say you were using a frequency counter and
someone walks by you talking on a cell phone. Your frequency counter would show something like 824.600 MHz. You can add 45 Mhz to this and listen to
the tower side of the conversation which usually has both sides of the conversation at 869.600 MHz.
Some scanners pick up cell phone conversation in other parts of the band. This is known as "imaging" and most dual conversion scanners will pick up
images 21.7 Mhz above or below the actual frequencies. Lets say you have a cell blocked scanner but your picking up calls at 901.690 MHz. If you minus
21.7 MHz away you would get 879.990 MHz. This is where the real conversation is taking place. Triple conversion scanners have better front ends and
eliminate most "imaging". There are some out there that do pick up images in the 1100 to 1200 MHz region like the PRO-2035.
If a person is traveling down the road, the phone will switch from cell site to cell site as the signals weakens and they get closer to the next
tower. You will have to stay close to them with a frequency counter to keep getting the frequency as the phone switches or you can get a Oki-900 cell
phone and a CTEK cable and trunk track them. That's right, follow the calls instantly as they change from site to site. I would not suggest getting
caught with one of these because its VERY illegal and it could end you up in prison with bend over Billy as a cell mate! You can also get a
Optoelectronics Scout frequency counter and a AOR-8200 scanner (unblocked from Canada or Europe) to track cell calls. The Reaction tune cable lets the
Scout lock onto any frequency and tune the scanner to that frequency instantly! The only difference with it from the Oki/CTEK combo is that the
Scout/AOR will follow the actual cell phone side and you have to stay close to the phone so that the counter can monitor the RF signal. If you really
want to follow the calls, go with the CTEK and Oki combo! Please do not email me asking about where and how to buy this stuff. If you follow the links
and do some reading, you will figure it out. Building a CTEK cable is not for the week hearted! You MUST have excellent soldering skills. If you are
not sure about building the CTEK cable then just go out and buy a older scanner that was made before the laws were passed and listen to them like most
other people do. You can still get new unblocked scanners but you have to take a small risk. Most countries out of the USA sells unlocked scanners.
Places like Javiation over in the UK. I have heard many, many good thing about this company and success stories of people ordering unblocked scanners
and having no problems getting it. Lets face it folks, the government is more worried about terrorism right now than you listening in on a perverted
cell phone conversation. If you purchase one, use your VISA or Master Card. If by chance Federal Customs caught the scanner, play dumb! Your credit
card company will probably refund your purchase. I have never heard of anyone getting fined for importing one scanner. Now if you tried to buy 20 or
30 of them to resell and they caught it then you might face some men in black at your front door.
Some of you are probably wondering about digital cell phones? I know of NO scanner as of now that will let you listen to them but here is a
interesting article that looks promising! Trust me, there are a crap load of analogue cell phones out there (over 70 million). You will have more to
listen to than you can handle. In most big cities, you can find many conversations at any hour of the day or night.
The most important thing is this: If you DO decide to listen in on a phone call, keep your mouth shut about what you hear! Do not go around bragging
about it and telling secrets you heard. Not all people appreciate the fact that you can listen in on calls! Shut up and enjoy.