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Old 18-Jan-2010, 1:29 AM   #1
qest
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 2
decent-looking indoor antenna

Hello, and thank you for this great resource!

My situation is that I'm in a condo and I can't mount an antenna outside. On top of that, most of my local stations are east of me and my unit is in a building in the NW corner of the building, but I am on the 2nd (top) floor.

I'm getting a new flatscreen which I intend to mount to the wall in the NW corner of my living room so there'll be some space behind it where I could hide an antenna. Directly above the TV is the HVAC tunnel.

We don't want anything ugly like rabbit ears or similar unless I can hide them and they'd have to be unusually small. I've seen some flat RCA antennas, but they don't seem highly regarded, and I'd want to mount it vertically (horizontal is apparently best for them) and behind the TV which would put the TV between the local stations and the antenna. If I knew it would work, I could go through the trouble of painting it and either putting it nearly horizontal on my slightly sloping ceiling or vertically in a skylight tunnel.

My win scenario would be to pull in the local PBS station (12) from the east and also a distant one to the north (39) which would keep me from wanting cable TV since my son would have both PBS stations anyway.

There is an area on the outside of the building near the ground on the north wall where I could hide an unobtrusive outdoor antenna near all the electrical/phone/CATV/etc. boxes, but that'd be just a few feet off the ground.

Any suggestions on how to get at least the local stations and preferably local plus the distant 2nd PBS station to the north would be GREATLY appreciated as it'd save me like $40/mo for Comcast.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...c572912a73ce85

Thanks!!!

Last edited by qest; 18-Jan-2010 at 1:33 AM.
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Old 18-Jan-2010, 4:12 AM   #2
mtownsend
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qest View Post
My situation is that I'm in a condo and I can't mount an antenna outside.
Just FYI, the FCC has an Over The Air Reception Devices rule (http://www.fcc.gov/mb/facts/otard.html) which essentially grants everyone the right to put up a reasonable OTA antenna for reception (with a few exceptions, so please read carefully). As a federal law, it supersedes any landlord, HOA, city, county, or state rules that might try to prevent you from exercising this right. Perhaps just knowing that the law is on your side can help you work out a reasonable compromise that makes everyone happy.

Also, do you have any kind of attic space that you could hide the antenna in? You are close enough to the stations to use a small full band (VHF and UHF) antenna that would probably fit in most attics.



Quote:
We don't want anything ugly like rabbit ears or similar unless I can hide them and they'd have to be unusually small.
UHF antennas can be a bit on the small side, but VHF antennas cannot. VHF channels have long wavelengths and necessitate the use of long antenna elements. You have three VHF channels to consider, WPVI (ch 6), WHYY (ch 12), and WBPH (ch 9).

For picking up VHF stations, you won't really find anything smaller than rabbit ears. If an antenna advertises VHF performance but does not have long antenna elements, then they are probably over-marketing its true ability.

If you're looking for a more aesthetically pleasing rabbit ears setup, you might consider the Philips PHDTV3 or the Terk HDTVi. These antennas have a compact "airplane-like" section for handling UHF and a set of rabbit ears for handling VHF.



Quote:
I've seen some flat RCA antennas, but they don't seem highly regarded, and I'd want to mount it vertically (horizontal is apparently best for them)
I don't have any experience with these antennas, so I cannot say much about their performance.

Generally speaking, omni antennas are sometimes bad for indoor or dense urban reception. That is because TV signals can bounce around between buildings, walls, and other structures. When multiple signal "echoes" or "ghosts" get into your antenna, it makes it more difficult for the receiver to decode the channel properly. This phenomenon is usually referred to as multipath.

Omni antennas accept signals from many directions, making them more likely to allow multipath signals into your receiver. Directional antennas are less sensitive in some directions and help screen out some of the unwanted extra signal reflections. A directional antenna can deliver a "cleaner" signal to the receiver and therefore make reception more reliable.

If you really want to try the RCA antenna, just make sure you save the receipt and get it from a place that has a good return policy. It will only take a couple of days to try it out and know if it's satisfactory or not.



Quote:
My win scenario would be to pull in the local PBS station (12) from the east and also a distant one to the north (39) which would keep me from wanting cable TV since my son would have both PBS stations anyway.
It's unlikely that you will receive WLVT (ch 39, PBS) with an indoor antenna. The signal strength appears to be at a level that requires a medium sized rooftop antenna or a large attic antenna.
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Old 20-Jan-2010, 5:20 AM   #3
qest
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Join Date: Jan 2010
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Thanks a ton!
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