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Old 23-Aug-2011, 3:46 AM   #1
richnerd
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Yep...yet another request for antenna assistance

Hello,

I'm looking for the best possible antenna for my location (East of Pgh.). I would first like to start off with the antenna in my attic (my attic would be approx. 30ft above street level) then mounted outdoors if needed. I own a home front facing approx. east with a crest of a hill / trees (it starts to open up East-North-East to North. Approx. South and West more hill / trees.

I plan to eliminate my FIOS TV ASAP so obviously I'd like to get as many stations as possible. I was thinking of the DB8 with additional VHS antenna but I don't want to take the wrong path. Please, if I could provide any further details I'd be happy to do so.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...9e74c76e907408

Thanks in advance for your assistance.
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Old 23-Aug-2011, 6:09 AM   #2
John Candle
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Tv Antennas and Reception

A Winegard HD7698P with a Antennas direct CPA-19 preamp will be mounted on the roof and aimed at 271 degree magnetic compass , West. Here is how to aim antennas , http://www.kyes.com/antenna/pointing/pointing.html. Here are places to buy antennas and etc. , http://www.solidsignal.com , http://www.starkelectronic.com , http://www.3starinc.com , http://www.amazon.com

Last edited by John Candle; 23-Aug-2011 at 7:30 AM.
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Old 23-Aug-2011, 10:01 PM   #3
richnerd
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Thanks for the response and the helpful links John. The antenna you mentioned is a beast. I'm not so sure I pull that one off with my wife on the outside and it's also too large to think about an attic installation (cape cod style home; could not face in the direction you provided.

Do you feel I provided enough detail of my location...is there any optional antenna setups you can recommend? ...or from my description would I likely have issues. I was hoping that I would not have to add a pre-amp; do you feel this is 100% necessary? ...I'm also trying be aware of energy savings.

thank again.
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Old 23-Aug-2011, 10:19 PM   #4
GroundUrMast
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The DB-8 is actually a good option. It won't do as well with real channel 11 and 13 but I think you should be hopeful. A high-band VHF in the attic could be added later, if needed.

Without the preamp, you'll miss out on the weaker signals.
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Old 24-Aug-2011, 12:52 AM   #5
richnerd
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GroundUrMast, thanks for your response and info. If a DB-8 was chosen would could be expected (loss) if installed in the attic? Is it possible to pick up VHS with this unit?

Ok, so far the mentioned antennas are the Winegard HD7698P and the AD DB-8.

Let me ask a few more questions as I learn more:
Do you recommend a pre-amp no matter what antenna is chosen for my location? If so, is there a best "bang for the buck" pre-amp or will the pre-amp need to match the antenna chosen (as say John recommended-Antennas direct CPA-19)?
Are there any pros/cons to having a solo or dual antenna setup?
How much more could the HD7698P get me for my area? ...I only ask in the sense that I'm not sure I'm reading the TV fool antenna info correctly. i.e. the "C" means duplicate station???

More info: I expect to have three to maybe four tv's hooked up to the OTA. I'm also looking into the best setup to utilize OTA, Netflix, etc. I'm looking into the HDhomerun, Roku and using Windows MP. Any recommendation in this area is also appreciated.

Thanks again.
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Old 24-Aug-2011, 1:13 AM   #6
GroundUrMast
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All attics will attenuate RF signals... how much depends on the construction materials used and in my experience, wet or snow covered roofs change rapidly... in a negative way.

I think the DB-8 will work for 11 & 13 in your situation, because both are relatively strong signals. However, putting the antenna in the attic would not help. All antennas will do better if mounted free of obstructions.

I would think the DB-8 would be more acceptable (to an antenna hater) on the roof than the long Winegard... but I like antennas, so I would go with the Winegard and be proud of it, it's a beautiful thing!

The CPA-19 is an excellent amplifier... low noise and resistant to overload, both are desirable traits. You can try without a preamp, but with either antenna you'll miss out on several of the weaker signals, especially when you start to split to multiple tuners. I would expect to need an amplifier.

I run several HDHR's... they like clean, strong signals. If the HDHR's are happy with a signal, all the other tuners in the house are going to have no trouble with the same signal.

The red "C" on the left side of your TVFR is a warning that another station is using the same frequency. In some cases, the interference can be dealt with through antenna choice. In a few cases, the interference may to strong or come from the same direction, making it impossible to receive the station. "C" stands for co-channel interference.
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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 24-Aug-2011 at 2:04 AM.
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Old 24-Aug-2011, 8:37 AM   #7
John Candle
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GUM and I are in the same camp , antennas are , Beautiful , Handsome , Pretty , Wonderful , I swell up with Pride when I see the Antenna on the roof of my house. I can not print here what I think about people that dislike and hate Tv antennas. However thats not why I am recommending a large antenna , I am recommending a large antenna because that is what it will take for reliable reception in all weather conditions of the weak stations like WNEO-DT 45 PBS. . Well Ok if the HD7698P is too big then go with a HD7696P or a Channel Master CM4228 HD. Are you living off the electric grid and generating your own power?? If you are on the electric grid , the CPA-19 does not use much power. Now that I know that 3 or 4 Tv's will be connected , Yes a amplifier is needed.

Last edited by John Candle; 24-Aug-2011 at 8:43 AM.
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Old 24-Aug-2011, 9:22 AM   #8
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Here are antenna mounts , http://www.ronard.com/34424560.html , http://www.ronard.com/ychim.html , http://www.ronard.com/909911.html
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Old 25-Aug-2011, 3:11 AM   #9
richnerd
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You know I'm laughing here because I too feel an attraction as I learn more.

Ok, so I now know that I will be getting/needing a pre-amp; thanks for the insight. John-no I'm not living off the grid or anything but It's something I'd like to work to at some point.

Also, I do plan to mount outside to start off with due to both of you common sense suggestions.

One thing I'd like to ask is John mentioned the getting weak stations like WNEO-DT 45 PBS...how does the repeat stations work? If I am able to get WQED-PBS is WNEO-DT PBS a duplicate station and just repeat?

Also, if I did go with a HD7696P or a Channel Master CM4228 HD what would I likely lose i.e. channels, quality, etc.?
Is it safe to assume that no matter what antenna is chosen it is agreed to point at 271 degrees?
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Old 25-Aug-2011, 4:23 AM   #10
John Candle
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WQED is WQED and WNEO is WNEO. One is not a repeater for the other. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WQED_(TV) , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western...e_Public_Media. It is a good idea to go a size bigger with Tv antenna when dealing with weak signals , the single digit NM (dB) numbers in red of the radar report. The bigger antenna helps make up for negative reception variables like , trees , buildings , weather (rain snow) and etc. that can degrade or block tv transmission and reception. I helped some people that lived on the other side of a land fill , from the tv transmitters , the land fill/mountain was very high , they did not get much in the way of Tv reception. . It looks like the HD7696P has been discontinued , it is now recommend to use the HD7697P antenna. The HD7697P antenna will work in place of the HD7698P. The CM4228HD will likely not receive any thing below WNEO , but you can give it a try. . You will be receiving the 2 groups of Tv stations to the west that have channel 48 in the middle.
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Old 25-Aug-2011, 6:16 AM   #11
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Here in Seattle, KCTS has been a PBS affiliate since I can remember watching TV as a kid back in the 1960's. KBTC is a more recent addition to the PBS affiliate family. I receive both and rarely see the program line-up match. They both carry entirely different programing on their sub-channels. The infomation John has posted and information at www.rabbitears.info would be a starting point in your research into the similarities and differences between WQED and WNEO.
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Old 25-Aug-2011, 7:22 AM   #12
John Candle
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Typing Tv stations call sings in the Google search box like this , kdka tv , will get a lot of information about the Tv stations and the programing.
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Old 25-Aug-2011, 10:19 PM   #13
richnerd
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Ok. I'm looking into the the receive mapping of the specific antennas.

Since I have a cluster of only three VHF stations WQED 13@8miles, WPCW 11@10miles and WTOV 9@43miles all approx West (assuming I would not get WWCP 8@41miles approx. East).

With that said, would I be better off with a two antenna (separate VHF / UHF) and direct the VHF more East and a UHF antenna to possible receive a broader surrounding area of my location? ...if I'm understanding some of this stuff correctly

PS - thanks for the channel info / link.

Last edited by richnerd; 26-Aug-2011 at 3:12 AM.
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Old 27-Aug-2011, 1:55 PM   #14
John Candle
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The cost of reception will go UP. I showed you how to find out what programing is on the few other UHF stations so you can decide if it's worth the Higher cost of reception. I strongly recommend installing and using what I have recommended.
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Old 27-Aug-2011, 2:01 PM   #15
John Candle
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WWCP is way in to the gray zone of extreme measures to receive , you Will Not Receive It. There Are No Tv stations to the east to receive. You are getting your self all twisted up and you are not even receiving any thing yet. What is better , twisting or receiving??

Last edited by John Candle; 27-Aug-2011 at 2:05 PM.
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Old 27-Aug-2011, 3:43 PM   #16
Billiam
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Richnerd. I'm familiar with the terrain in your area because I may be moving to the Pittsburgh area next year.

The best UHF antenna for this situation would be a Yagi. Most of your signals are 2 edge, not line of sight and the area is prone to severe multipath where the signal will be coming in from two or more directions as it bounces off trees, hills etc. I would not try to a 8 bay like the CM 4228 in that environment. I tried one at my current location which is similar to yours environmentally speaking and it did not fare that well even with the 1 edge signals. In contrast, after I mounted a Antennacraft MXU 59 and Antennas Direct 91XG I got great reception on every UHF channel that is receivable at my location.

I'd recommend the Antennacraft HBU 55 or the Winegard 7698p for your location if you want to use just one antenna for that location. The Winegard will probably give slightly better UHF gain while the Antennacraft should offer slightly better VHF gain for your VHF high signals.
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Old 27-Aug-2011, 6:31 PM   #17
richnerd
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Thanks John and Billiam,

John - I don't mean to be a pain. It's easy to get twisted.

Billiam - Thanks for the added input. It's always good to here someone know the area.

I was only bring up two antennas vs. one due to the suggestions that came up on hdtv antenna labs i.e.

The Suggested Dual-Antenna Setup: Pulling the Most TV Networks

* AntennasDirect 91XG (Read 91XG reviews)
* AntennasDirect C5 (Read C5 reviews)
* Preamp: Required
* Rotator: Required


Expected performance (very rough estimation, LOS assumed)

* Displayed on the map: 41 stations delivering programming from 8 TV networks
* Stations in range: 28 (WLLS-LP, WNNB-LP, WJPW-CA, WFMJ-TV, WWBP-LP, WBOA-LP, WKHU-CA, WNPB-TV, WKBN-TV, WYTV, WEMW-LP, WJAC-TV, WQVC-CA, WBPA-LP, WBYD-CA, W61CC, WPTG-LP, WBGN-LP, W65CG, WTAE-TV, WQEX, WPCB-TV, KDKA-TV, WPGH-TV, WPMY, WPXI, WPCW, WQED)
* TV networks in range: 9 (AmericaOne, , NBC, CW, CBS, ABC, MyN, RTV, FOX)
* Unreachable stations: 13 (W52DS, WSSS-LP, WTOV-TV, WVTX-CA, WYFX-LP, W29CO, W45BT, WFXI-CA, WWCP-TV, WWKH-CA, W41AA, WTRF-TV, WWVW-LP)
* Unreachable networks: 0 ()

The Alternative Setup: Single Antenna Solution Pulling the Most TV Networks

* Winegard HD7698P (Read HD7698P reviews)
* Preamp: Required
* Rotator: Required


Expected performance (very rough estimation, LOS assumed)

* Displayed on the map: 41 stations delivering programming from 8 TV networks
* Stations in range: 25 (WFMJ-TV, WWBP-LP, WBOA-LP, WKHU-CA, WNPB-TV, WKBN-TV, WYTV, WEMW-LP, WJAC-TV, WQVC-CA, WBPA-LP, WBYD-CA, W61CC, WPTG-LP, WBGN-LP, W65CG, WTAE-TV, WQEX, WPCB-TV, KDKA-TV, WPGH-TV, WPMY, WPXI, WPCW, WQED)
* TV networks in range: 8 (NBC, CW, , CBS, ABC, MyN, RTV, FOX)
* Unreachable stations: 16 (W52DS, WSSS-LP, WTOV-TV, WVTX-CA, WYFX-LP, W29CO, W45BT, WFXI-CA, WLLS-LP, WNNB-LP, WWCP-TV, WWKH-CA, W41AA, WJPW-CA, WTRF-TV, WWVW-LP)
* Unreachable networks: 1 (AmericaOne)

BTW - I'm assuming I will not need motorize (rotate) the antenna once I install...correct?

thanks.
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Old 27-Aug-2011, 9:29 PM   #18
John Candle
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The average gain figures of the HBU55 are VHF high 9.3 and UHF 9.0 . The average gain figures of the HD7698P are VHF high 11.5 and UHF 13.2 . The Winegard is a way better antenna.
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Old 27-Aug-2011, 9:37 PM   #19
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The best to do at this point in time is to select the antenna or antennas to direct at the west group of Tv stations install and watch Tv. Then you can decide if you will like to install a rotor or additional antenna or antennas. Or a rotor with additional antenna or antennas mounted on the rotor.
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Old 28-Aug-2011, 1:54 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Candle View Post
The average gain figures of the HBU55 are VHF high 9.3 and UHF 9.0 . The average gain figures of the HD7698P are VHF high 11.5 and UHF 13.2 . The Winegard is a way better antenna.
I've seen at least two different studies on a Canadian HDTV Forum where people actually modeled several different antennas including Winegard antennas and essentially bench tested them to see if their spec's were in line with what they reported. Antennacraft's figures are accurate while the Winegard spec's are inflated.

Bear in mind that 9.0 is just an average and certain channels are going to offer greater gain than that figure. What I do is email Tech Support and ask them to give me a specific gain figure for the channels that I need and then I can compare them to other antennas.

The following is a must read for anyone shopping for a new antenna. After you compare the antennas that were tested in a scientific manner you will be able to determine which antenna is best.

http://www.hdtvprimer.com/ANTENNAS/comparing.html
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