Whistler WS1010 Review

Whistler WS1010 Review

Best Radio Scanner

The Whistler WS1010 is an affordable and travel-friendly analog scanner that will keep you up to date with over 25,000 conventional transmissions, such as FM radio bands, marine, fire/police departments, air, ham, and weather frequencies. Just press a quick search button and you’ll get access to the most common frequencies, without going through tedious and complicated programming.

The scanner has a 200 channel memory, so you can store all your favorite frequencies in 10 separate storage banks. Use these 10 banks to group and organize your favorite frequencies into separate channels for easier use.

Thanks to its ergonomic design, you can easily take it with you wherever you go and use it the same way you would a walkie-talkie. The LCD screen is also backlit making it easy to read and program even when you find yourself in low light situations.

In addition, you can use the Key Lock function to lock the scanner’s keys. This way, you can avoid changing your channel or the programming by accident when you use the scanner on the go.

And now, for the best part, let’s take a look at what are the features that make the Whistler WS1010 stand out.

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Best Features

PC Programmable

If you don’t want to manually program frequencies, we have good news for you – you can use your PC to program all the frequencies you need. Just download a third-party software, and you can use it to backup data, update the database, and of course, program your frequencies.

Skywarn Storm Spotter

This function provides you with instant access to local storm spotter network frequencies so you can closely monitor storm conditions as soon as they occur. This will ensure you’re prepared for any dangerous conditions, long before the media or the emergency services announce them to the public.

Priority Channel

You can set the scanner to check your favorite channel for new transmissions every 2 seconds. This way, you won’t miss any important chatter.

Spectrum Sweeper

The Spectrum Sweeper option allows you to sweep a range of frequencies to detect and monitor nearby radio transmissions. You can also set the scanner to sweep specific frequencies and exclude the ones you don’t want to sweep.

Technical Specs

  • Frequency Coverage: 29 – 54 MHz; 108 – 174 MHz; 380 – 512 MHz
  • Display: Backlit LCD
  • Channels: 200
  • Banks: 10 (20 channels each)
  • PC Interface: Yes
  • Scanning Speed: 80 channels per second
  • Channel Steps: 5 kHz; 12.5 kHz

To see the full list of technical specifications of the Whistler WS1010, click here.

What’s in the Box of the Whistler WS1010

The Whistler WS1010 comes with the following items in the box:

  • AC Adapter
  • Flex Antenna
  • Black Battery Shell
  • Yellow Rechargeable Battery Shell
  • User Guide
  • Quick Start Guide

What Users Love the Most About It

Most of the people who’ve bought the Whistler WS1010 have had a positive experience. The main obstacle was the programming, but that was easily overcome when carefully reading the user manual.

On the other hand, the simplicity of the scanner is constantly praised in online reviews, and combined with the wide set of features, makes for a worthwhile purchase. Let’s see what one satisfied customer had to say:

Very happy with this scanner! The audio is very good and the programming is quite easy once you read the manual. I’ve had other scanners priced well above this one, and the Whistler works just as well, if not better, than the others. I highly recommend it! – Joseph E. Brown

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get codes for your area?

The Quick Start Guide tells you to go to www.radioreference.com to locate a list of frequencies in your area.

Can I charge the batteries from the scanner when it is on?

Yes, HOWEVER, this takes a very long time and the batteries will not fully charge. We recommend an external battery charger and 2 sets of rechargeable AA batteries

Does it have a belt clip?

This model does not come with a belt clip; however, you can purchase one separately if needed.


Overall, the Whistler WS1010 is a great analog option for scanner hobbyists who need an affordable option, yet one that has the most important features of a police scanner. The fact that it’s a handheld scanner with an ergonomic design only further boosts its appeal.

Final rating: 4/5

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