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Old 8-Feb-2019, 2:12 PM   #8
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 194
I too would be very surprised if the "Fisher Price" 150-mile antenna you ordered works better than a functioning CM-5020 (Advantage 100). Most likely, your neighbor stumbled on a sweetspot in spite of all the trees in the yard. I suspect your issue is a water/corrosion in the coax or connectors. IFAIK, amps tend to either work or fail completely, not fail slowly over time.

In your search for your sweet-spot, did you take out all of the downstream equipment and use only a single short length (50-ft) of new RG-6 coax? That is a good way to eliminate possible problems due to double (or over-) amplification, corroded connectors, bad tees, etc. and focus only on the antenna location problem. This of course would ideally be done after having carefully inspecting the CM-5020 connections and 4:1 balun to rule them out.

For your other question about a 2- or 4-bay for long range reception... I can't speak to 2- or 4-bays specifically, but I do use an 8-bay UHF (DB8e) for near-100% reliable 3-edge reception from 72 miles . It can be made to work (see end of "Reception Help in NH" thread for details). The keys are having a good high gain antenna (not Fisher Price); a sweet location on your roof, yard, or trees/tower if necessary; and finally having quality functional equipment (connectors, amps, and good coax).
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