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Old 3-Oct-2010, 6:56 PM   #3
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 632
Hello and welcome!

I have not had the benefit of seeing Tigerbangs response, but here are a few of my own observations:

1) Most of the NYC channels are too weak to be received reliably, so I'm not sure if it will be worth it for you to go after those stations. All of the NY channels are in the "red" and "gray" zones on your TV Fool report.

2) You have a very good selection of channels from Philadelphia alone. Do you even need the channels out of New Jersey and Allentown? I would imagine that a significant amount of programming on these extra out-of-market channels would be a duplication of what you already get in Philly. You can have a very simple antenna setup if you only go after the Philly stations and ignore the rest.

3) You cannot combine dissimilar antennas that overlap the same frequency bands. The MS-1000 covers VHF and UHF. The 91XG covers UHF. If you combine them, the UHF range on these antennas would be electrically connected to each other and working as a strange larger virtual antenna. Chances are that this virtual antenna combo will have screwy performance all around, and it won't be able to pull in any distant stations.

4) You cannot use an amp of any kind. Pre-amps and distribution amps will certainly get overloaded by the signal levels coming from your local stations. You should avoid using any kind of amplification in your setup. When amps overload, they add distortion to the output signal, and this distortion can make things worse rather than better. In the presence of very strong signals, amplification can be a bad thing.

If you can live with just the Philly stations, then all you need is something like the Winegard HD7000R, RG6 coax, and a passive 4-way splitter (if you still need 4 splits).

If you really need stations from multiple directions (Allentown and New Jersey), the most viable way to do this is to use a highly directional antenna and an antenna rotator. You cannot get all the stations at the same time (because the rotator needs to be turned for each channel cluster), so this may be a problem if you plan on doing unattended recording of shows (with a DVR or similar setup). This adds a lot of cost and complexity (much larger antenna, rotator, more cabling, more adjustments) to the setup, so you need to ask yourself if the extra channels are really worth it.

I don't expect you to have much luck with the New York signals. Those signals are very weak, and you cannot use a pre-amp due to your close proximity to the Philadelphia transmitters. Things might have been a little different if you were farther from the Philly stations (far enough so that pre-amps would not get overloaded), but that is not the case here.
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