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Old 3-Sep-2014, 4:33 PM   #1
Calvin92
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Help Me Obi-Wan Antenna

Hi, any help appreciated. This past summer, I finally dropped my DirectTV to go OTA. I purchased a Channel Master DVR+ to get my recordings and a Mohu Leaf Paper Thin Indoor Antenna. However, that antenna would not pick up half of the stations even though I am only 13 miles from the transmitters.

I then purchased a Winegard FL6550A Flatwave Exterior Antenna. I installed the antenna and used my existing DirectTV cables. After hooking everything up, I was able to get the channels that I needed, but kept getting a flicker on multiple stations every 4 seconds. After consulting with Winegard, they informed me that the antenna that I had was overpowered for such a close range (apparently there is a minimum range for it but this is not listed).

So, I returned that one and got a Winegard FV-30BB HDTV Antenna. On hook up, I get the same channels, but again, I get the flicker every 4 seconds. Since the channels come in, I'm getting the impression that perhaps the issue is not with the antenna. The flicker occurs on the upstairs TV as well, so I've ruled out a TV problem. I'm believe that it is either an issue with the cable line or power level. Additionally, I live in a heavily wooded area, though the direction of the antenna is clear for around 100 yards before the trees start.

I have tried the antenna at 25 feet and at 45 feet heights. Any ideas on what may be causing the issue? I've been working on getting this OTA solution up and running on/off since early July. Would hate to go back to paying for something that is free.

Here is my TV Fool Report:
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...d2435bc5f35148

Much appreciated.
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Old 3-Sep-2014, 5:59 PM   #2
GroundUrMast
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You have plenty of signal in the air... but not excessive levels. The trees can account for reception reliability problems. Moving limbs and foliage will cause signal levels to change rapidly, making the tuner loose lock on the data stream.

One could also speculate that there is a source of interference in the area.

I'd have used a more directional antenna to combat some of the effects of foliage, multi-path and interference.

The Winegard HD7694P and Antennacraft HBU-33 come to mind.

Before you give up on the existing antenna, consider purchasing a new, factory built cable assembly, 50' or less in length. I would use it to bypass all the existing cable, so that you can test just the antenna connected to one TV. The test setup can be run temporarily, even through an open door or window. While testing, be sure to try alternate aim and position of the antenna. If you can't find a reliable position for the antenna, I'd then consider stepping up to a more directional antenna.

If you do replace the existing antenna, I'd not expect you to need any amplification, though if the need was proven, a distribution amplifier can be added at any time.
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If the well is dry and you don't see rain on the horizon, you'll need to dig the hole deeper. (If the antenna can't get the job done, an amp won't fix it.)

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Old 4-Sep-2014, 6:18 AM   #3
teleview
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I suspect some electric/electronic interference.

Install the FV-30BB non amplified antenna outside and above the roof.

Aim the antenna to the North West.

Connect a New Continues Length of coax to the antenna and run the coax through a open door or window , direct to 1 Tv.

Is the 4 second interference happening now??

If so , then go to the circuit breaker panel and shut off electric with the circuit breakers to sections of the house except for the room the Tv is in.

And in the room the Tv is in and the other rooms that circuit breaker provides power to , unplug All devices.

Is the interference happening now??

And in an effort to find the source of interference if it is on the property some where.

People have even bought a portable battery powered Tv , and switched off the Main Circuit Breakers for the house and other buildings on the property.

And if no battery powered Tv , then have run a long extinion cord from the neighbors house to power the Tv.

Or rented a portable generator to power the Tv.

And the FV-30BB antenna can be used to locate interference on and around the property or even off the property .

Install the FV-30BB antenna on a broom handle connect a long coax and use the FV-30BB antenna as a probe.

Usually a electric/electronic device is generating the interference some where in the the house in the attic or outside the house.

Often it is a power supply transformer and or device that is plugged in all the time and has gone bad.

At my wife sister house , a Old Caller ID Device that was plugged in years ago , buried under a pile of stuff and forgot about was found and unplugged and the interference stopped.

----------

If something is causing interference inside/outside the house it can be Anywhere and can be Anything.

Last edited by teleview; 6-Sep-2014 at 12:01 AM. Reason: Clarify information and typos.
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Old 4-Sep-2014, 6:05 PM   #4
Calvin92
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Will do

Thanks for the advice everyone. Hope to try these suggestions out this weekend.

On another related note, what is the correct type of outdoor cable for OTA Antenna use that I should purchase? Granted, for the test direct to the TV, it probably does not matter, but if I need to replace a section of the permanent cable, would it be RG-59?

Thanks
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Old 5-Sep-2014, 1:47 AM   #5
tonyp063
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RG-6

RG-59 is more lossy over any given distance than RG-6
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Old 5-Sep-2014, 5:50 AM   #6
GroundUrMast
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For over the air antenna systems, RG-6 dual shield is plenty... There is no reason to spend extra money on RG-6 quad shield. Compression connectors are far superior to the old crimp type and worth the cost difference, even if you need to buy a compression tool.
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If the well is dry and you don't see rain on the horizon, you'll need to dig the hole deeper. (If the antenna can't get the job done, an amp won't fix it.)

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Old 5-Sep-2014, 7:38 AM   #7
Ben Myers
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Calvin92 View Post
Hi, any help appreciated. This past summer, I finally dropped my DirectTV to go OTA. I purchased a Channel Master DVR+ to get my recordings and a Mohu Leaf Paper Thin Indoor Antenna. However, that antenna would not pick up half of the stations even though I am only 13 miles from the transmitters.

I then purchased a Winegard FL6550A Flatwave Exterior Antenna. I installed the antenna and used my existing DirectTV cables. After hooking everything up, I was able to get the channels that I needed, but kept getting a flicker on multiple stations every 4 seconds. After consulting with Winegard, they informed me that the antenna that I had was overpowered for such a close range (apparently there is a minimum range for it but this is not listed).

So, I returned that one and got a Winegard FV-30BB HDTV Antenna. On hook up, I get the same channels, but again, I get the flicker every 4 seconds. Since the channels come in, I'm getting the impression that perhaps the issue is not with the antenna. The flicker occurs on the upstairs TV as well, so I've ruled out a TV problem. I'm believe that it is either an issue with the cable line or power level. Additionally, I live in a heavily wooded area, though the direction of the antenna is clear for around 100 yards before the trees start.

I have tried the antenna at 25 feet and at 45 feet heights. Any ideas on what may be causing the issue? I've been working on getting this OTA solution up and running on/off since early July. Would hate to go back to paying for something that is free.

Here is my TV Fool Report:
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...d2435bc5f35148

Much appreciated.
Make sure all DirecTV equipment and any preamp power supplies have been removed from the coax.
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Old 8-Sep-2014, 2:37 PM   #8
Calvin92
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Success!

Thanks for the advice everyone. I did a direct connect from the antenna to the TV and that works great, so my issue is some where in the line. I was able to bypass most of the house wiring to get one of the TVs working. Hope to have the rest up soon.

Thanks Again.
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