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Old 20-Jan-2010, 11:39 PM   #2
mtownsend
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 632
Hello and welcome!

Your situation seems to be pretty straightforward. You gets lots of channels from just one direction and their signal strengths are good. For this situation, I would recommend a Winegard HD7695P on the roof pointed at a compass heading of 88 degrees.

WVEN and WOPX are not in the same cluster as everyone else (about 40 degrees off-aim), but since they are your strongest channels, there's a good chance that you'll still pick them up even if your antenna is not pointed directly at them.



Also, just FYI, CATV amplifiers sometimes include a "return path" in their design. That means that they allow RF energy to go backward through the amp for "upstream" signaling like cable modems. For OTA applications, people usually don't use these kinds of amps because that return path signal ends up going back to the antenna and radiating out into the environment. I don't think there's much chance of this causing any problems, but it's just something to be aware of.

Generally speaking, CATV amps also have worse Noise Figure specifications than a good OTA pre-amp. That is because they are expecting very strong signals at their input and don't need a very good Noise Figure specification to do their job. In OTA situations, especially if some of the channels are marginal, it's very important to find an amp with a low Noise Figure rating (usually under 3 dB).

In your situation, the signals are probably strong enough to work just fine. However, if you do discover that some of the channels are dropping out, you might consider swapping the CATV amp with one better suited to OTA applications.
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