To program frequencies into a base model Uniden Bearcat Scanner, connect the antenna, power up the scanner, and press the "Prog" key until the letters "CH" blink on the display. Select a storage bank for the first frequency, such as Private, Fire/EMG or Police, and enter the frequency using the numeric keypad. Enter additional frequencies, if desired, then press the "Prog" key to exit programming mode.
To program a handheld Uniden Bearcat Scanner, connect the antenna, power up the scanner, press the "Scan" button to enter scanning mode, then press the "Manual" button to enter manual programming mode. Enter a channel number and press "Manual" again. Enter a frequency using the numeric keypad, then press the "Enter" key. Press "Scan" to return to scanning mode.
While it is possible to add frequencies while scanning, it's more efficient to manually program known frequencies used in the local area, states the Houston Chronicle. The Chronicle also notes that the manufacturer supplies an antenna, but using an external antenna can give the scanner better reception.
A radio-frequency scanner, such as the Uniden Bearcat, monitors active radio communications within the unit's range. Amateur hobbyists use scanners to listen in on police and emergency dispatches. Business professionals use them to monitor communications between warehouse personnel, truck drivers and security guards.