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Old 31-Aug-2013, 8:38 AM   #1
Damon459
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Help in Western Montana.

Ok so here's the deal and this will be long. I started by using cheap bunny ears and picked up one station, so I though what the heck let's see what we can do with a better antenna. My first choice was the Antennas direct Clearstream 2-V long range UHF/VHF antenna, without doing a tvfool check. The results, I picked up NBC no problem which didn't surprise me since I can get that one with the rabbit ears, and if I angled the antenna at about 45 degrees I picked up ABC/FOX even though that one comes up as grey extreme measures needed. If I took out the angle I picked up CBS/NBC but lost ABC/FOX, and couldn't get PBS at all. So I decided to add the RCA TVPRAMP1R, this gave me a stronger signal for the above mentioned channels but again it was either CBS/NBC or NBC/ABC/FOX and no PBS either way. Next I tried the ClearStream 5 VHF Ultra long range and nothing at all, even with the pre-amp. I'm now using the RCA ANT751, which I understand is also know as the winegard EZ HD Antenna with the RCA pre-amp. I'm able to pick up PBS with a signal of 40 according to my tv screen and 70 for NBC, I can move it slightly and get CBS/CW as well but when do that PBS goes out. I know there is a spread between PBS/NBC and the rest of the stations, and probably can't get all the channels without an antenna rotator. So the main thing I want to know is it possible to get an Antenna that will at minimum pick up NBC,CBS,ABC,FOX or is what I have the best I'm going to get signal wise? Here is my tvfool report, http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...46ae259b3338d1
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Old 31-Aug-2013, 7:53 PM   #2
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The signal levels shown in your report suggest you need to use a large antenna with UHF and High-VHF capability or a combination of separate single band antennas.

Given the rather extreme terrain in the Missoula area, the accuracy of a prediction may be affected. Your reception experience thus far is encouraging.

Consider the Winegard HD7698P pointed at 314 per a real compass. If you have more than one TV to connect, or more than 50' of coax between the antenna and TV, add an RCA TVPRAMP1R preamplifier.

A premium system would be an Antennacraft Y10713, Antennas Direct 91XG and the TVPRAMP1R. Regardless of which option you choose, the antenna(s) need to be outside, clear of obstructions.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 12:13 AM   #3
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For reception of ,

KPAX VHF high band channel 7 , CBS , CW , MTN.

KECI , VHF high band channel 13 , NBC , Me-Tv.

K08PR , VHF high band channel 08 , PBS , Spokane.

KTMF , UHF channel 23 , ABC , FOX.

Aim a Winegard HD7698P antenna at about 314 degree magnetic compass direction.

Install a Winegard , LNA-200 'Boost' XT amplifier.

Here is how to aim antennas , http://www.kyes.com/antenna/pointing/pointing.html.

Use a Old School magnetic compass to aim antenna.

_______________________________

And for the reception of .

K14IU-D , UHF channel 14 , is a repeater station for KECI.

KUFM-DT , VHF high band channel 11 , Montana , PBS.

Aim a second Wingard HD7698P antenna at about , 202 degree magnetic compass direction.

Install a Winegard , LNA-200 'Boost' XT amplifier.

____________________________

The 2 antenna are connected to a , Remote control A/B antenna switch ,

http://www.mcmelectronics.com. #32-4425.

____________________________

Each antenna has it's own Winegard LNA-200 'Boost' XT amplifier.

So the , power supply , power injector , preamplifier unit , are connected before the A/B antenna switch.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 12:30 AM   #4
Damon459
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by GroundUrMast View Post
The signal levels shown in your report suggest you need to use a large antenna with UHF and High-VHF capability or a combination of separate single band antennas.

Given the rather extreme terrain in the Missoula area, the accuracy of a prediction may be affected. Your reception experience thus far is encouraging.

Consider the Winegard HD7698P pointed at 314 per a real compass. If you have more than one TV to connect, or more than 50' of coax between the antenna and TV, add an RCA TVPRAMP1R preamplifier.

A premium system would be an Antennacraft Y10713, Antennas Direct 91XG and the TVPRAMP1R. Regardless of which option you choose, the antenna(s) need to be outside, clear of obstructions.
Thank you for the reply. I was actually already considering the Winegard HD7698P, so I was surprise to see and expert suggest it. The other Antenna I was considering is the HD Stacker Antenna from Denny's TV Antenna's which I understand is made by winegard exclusively for them. I was also considering upgrading my RCA TVPRAMP1R to the Channel Master CM 7777 Titan2 or Winegard AP8275 Chromstar 2000 Series VHF/UHF Pre Amplifier, I'm currently leaning towards the winegard do to cost? Also can you recommend an Antenna rotor since I really do want PBS?
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 1:37 AM   #5
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If someone wants to experiment with the Stacker, I won't try to stop them. The HD Stacker has it's fans and some others who would rail against it. I've yet to find credible documentation of it's performance, so I'm inclined to recommend options that have published specifications.

I just ordered a TVPRAMP1R from Amazon... less than $25. http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=13530

I'm not impressed with any of the rotators available... until you step up to commercial / HAM grade products. If the HyGain AR-40 is within your budget, I could suggest it in good conscience. http://www.hy-gain.com/Product.php?productid=AR-40

I'm more inclined to recommend a second antenna and tuner: http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=2882 This solution avoids any risk of being stuck with a TV that has to be re-scanned every time you switch antennas or re-aim the antenna.
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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 1-Sep-2013 at 1:44 AM. Reason: rotators
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 2:26 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by GroundUrMast View Post
If someone wants to experiment with the Stacker, I won't try to stop them. The HD Stacker has it's fans and some others who would rail against it. I've yet to find credible documentation of it's performance, so I'm inclined to recommend options that have published specifications.

I just ordered a TVPRAMP1R from Amazon... less than $25. http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=13530

I'm not impressed with any of the rotators available... until you step up to commercial / HAM grade products. If the HyGain AR-40 is within your budget, I could suggest it in good conscience. http://www.hy-gain.com/Product.php?productid=AR-40

I'm more inclined to recommend a second antenna and tuner: http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=2882 This solution avoids any risk of being stuck with a TV that has to be re-scanned every time you switch antennas or re-aim the antenna.
As I said I already have the TVPRAMP1R I bought it last month from Walmart it seems on but from what I saw it only helped according to my tv's signal meter by about 5 points. Now I know my signal meter on the tv probably isn't the best indicator since anything over 50 gets me a solid picture but thats all I have to go by. This is why I thought maybe a more powerful preamp would be better. As for adding a second Antenna, I think I'll wait and see if I can manage to pick up CBS, NBC, PBS with one antenna while I keep pestering the local ABC to add a relay tower out here. Thanks for the help.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 3:16 AM   #7
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Soap Box Alert...

Amplifiers are not a replacement or substitute for the correct antenna, mounted in a location that has adequate signal quality. Signal quality is like water quality... There's a lot of water in the sewage treatment plant, that doesn't mean you would want to drink it. A weak signal free of interference and noise will be easier for a tuner to work with than a bunch of amplified noise and interference with a dab of real signal mixed in.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 3:25 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by GroundUrMast View Post
Amplifiers are not a replacement or substitute for the correct antenna, mounted in a location that has adequate signal quality. Signal quality is like water quality... There's a lot of water in the sewage treatment plant, that doesn't mean you would want to drink it. A weak signal free of interference and noise will be easier for a tuner to work with than a bunch of amplified noise and interference with a dab of real signal mixed in.
I realize that much, my main issue with the RCA pre-amp is I have no way of knowing if it's actually working. I set my Antenna up without the preamp installed and the signal difference was almost not noticeable. So how would a person know if the RCA one is correctly working or defective? At least with the winegards I have seen they have a light, and an actual testing procedure to tell if it's doing anything.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 3:44 AM   #9
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You're describing a situation that's quite common. Most TV signal meter functions display a value that's related to the error rate of the received signal. Simply increasing the signal level will not change the error rate if the errors are the result of signal quality at the antenna. A more powerful mix of signal, noise and interference will not be much easier to receive and decode than the weaker version.

If you get no signal through the preamp, you can presume the amplifier is not connected or powered correctly or it has failed internally. That you see signal though it says that it's working.

If the total length of coax is 50' or less, and you are only connecting one TV with a good quality tuner, a preamplifier will add little. A 100' section of RG-6 will have less than 6 dB loss at the highest UHF frequency. At VHF frequencies the loss can be less than the amount of noise created inside a good preamp.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 3:51 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by GroundUrMast View Post
You're describing a situation that's quite common. Most TV signal meter functions display a value that's related to the error rate of the received signal. Simply increasing the signal level will not change the error rate if the errors are the result of signal quality at the antenna. A more powerful mix of signal, noise and interference will not be much easier to receive and decode than the weaker version.

If you get no signal through the preamp, you can presume the amplifier is not connected or powered correctly or it has failed internally. That you see signal though it says that it's working.

If the total length of coax is 50' or less, and you are only connecting one TV with a good quality tuner, a preamplifier will add little. A 100' section of RG-6 will have less than 6 dB loss at the highest UHF frequency. At VHF frequencies the loss can be less than the amount of noise created inside a good preamp.
So it sounds like I shouldn't be using one at all then? I'm only connected to 1 tv and have less then 25 feet of brand new RG 6 cable, being in a trailer house I didn't need a long run from the roof to the tv.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 4:33 AM   #11
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It sounds like you have a good quality tuner. Not much to be gained adding an amplifier unless you add a splitter and more cable.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 4:43 AM   #12
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It sounds like you have a good quality tuner. Not much to be gained adding an amplifier unless you add a splitter and more cable.
To be honest I didn't know there was much difference, it's a 46 in Sharp aquos quattron from 2010. I only bought it because of the added yellow pixels. But I guess you could be right I mean I can pick up one channel with a $12.00 indoor antenna from walmart, yet antennaweb say's I shouldn't be able to get anything. Oh one more thing to aks I just looked at an Antenna I though about getting since it's cheaper on Amazon it's the Antennacraft heavy duty extreme deep fringe HD1850 for $132 including shipping. Then I can use the other Antenna for my camper.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 7:11 AM   #13
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If you plan to be in areas with broadcasts on real channels 2 through 6, the HD1850 would give you just about the best available performance in that frequency range. It's a big antenna, you'd need to think about protecting it when on the road in the camper.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 7:41 AM   #14
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I think I may have misspoke or your misunderstood me. I was thinking about upgrading to the HD1850 for my home and using my RCA ANT751 on the camper. Correct me if I'm wrong but, I was told I'm in an area where I need a large direction Antenna with a preamp? I received this information from one of my local tv stations, they claim a "deep fringe" antenna will work best. So are they giving me false information on what works best for high VHF? All of my channels in Missoula are VHF except 23.1/23.2 which are ABC/FOX, and I don't really need them since I have them on my SAT. One thing really confusing me is I'm getting KUFM-TV and K14IU-D which are at 202 and 209, When I point my current antenna at 314 give or take a couple degree's in each direction I get nothing even with my antenna being 25 feet in the air. It's so confusing to me, and I'm sorry if all my questions are driving you mad, you've been patient and helpful with my inexperience.
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 12:12 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by teleview View Post
For reception of ,

KPAX VHF high band channel 7 , CBS , CW , MTN.

KECI , VHF high band channel 13 , NBC , Me-Tv.

K08PR , VHF high band channel 08 , PBS , Spokane.

KTMF , UHF channel 23 , ABC , FOX.

Aim a Winegard HD7698P antenna at about 314 degree magnetic compass direction.

Install a Winegard , LNA-200 'Boost' XT amplifier.

Here is how to aim antennas , http://www.kyes.com/antenna/pointing/pointing.html.

Use a Old School magnetic compass to aim antenna.

_______________________________

And for the reception of .

K14IU-D , UHF channel 14 , is a repeater station for KECI.

KUFM-DT , VHF high band channel 11 , Montana , PBS.

Aim a second Wingard HD7698P antenna at about , 202 degree magnetic compass direction.

Install a Winegard , LNA-200 'Boost' XT amplifier.

____________________________

The 2 antenna are connected to a , Remote control A/B antenna switch ,

http://www.mcmelectronics.com. #32-4425.

____________________________

Each antenna has it's own Winegard LNA-200 'Boost' XT amplifier.

So the , power supply , power injector , preamplifier unit , are connected before the A/B antenna switch.
Wow I didn't realize there were two nbc's and two pbs's, I feel dumb now lol! I now now I was getting 14 not 13 and I picked up 23 and 7. Now the hard part will be getting everything at 314 because when I got them before I had the antenna aimed at 314 then tilted toward the sky at about 45 degrees. Does that piece of info change any of the thoughts or suggestions?
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 9:11 PM   #16
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Ah... I didn't read carefully. Your patience is equally appreciated. The ANT-751 would make a very good camper antenna.

The HD1850 does qualify as a 'deep fringe' antenna, as does the Winegard HD7698P. A significant difference between the two is that the 1850 has intentional support for real channels 2 through 6, the 7698 does not.

If you know of credible talk about adding one or more translators in your area, and they are likely to be using channel 2 through 6, the 1850 would be worth the money and extra wind load area. Otherwise, I'll stick with my recommendations in post #2 of this thread.

You can click on the call signs of each station on your report to see the path profile. It appears that you are severely shadowed by very tall terrain. You are no doubt needing to tilt the antenna toward the top of the ridge where the signals are diffracting over toward you. I would expect there to be sources of reflected signals also.
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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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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 4-Sep-2013 at 4:43 AM. Reason: grammar
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Old 1-Sep-2013, 11:30 PM   #17
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Ah... I didn't read carefully. Your patience is equally appreciated. The ANT-751 would make a very good camper antenna.

The HD1850 does qualify as a 'deep fringe' antenna, as does the Winegard HD7698P. A significant difference between the two is that the 1850 has intentional support for real channels 2 through 6, the 7698 does not.

If you know credible talk about adding one or more translators in your area, and they are likely to be using channel 2 through 6, the 1850 would be worth the money and extra wind load area. Otherwise, I'll stick with my recommendations in post #2 of this thread.

You can click on the call signs of each station on your report to see the path profile. It appears that you are severely shadowed by very tall terrain. You are no doubt needing to tilt the antenna toward the top of the ridge where the signals are diffracting over toward you. I would expect there to be sources of reflected signals also.
Wind Load is also important believe it or not the canyon I live in is very windy in the spring, fall, and winter. The canyon is commonly referred to as the HellGate Canyon and we can see winds up to 40MPH even tucked against the mountain where I am. I'm not wanting to spend thousands mind you, but I do need something that can handle Montana's winters including snow, wind, and freezing temperatures. I even considered that "green dish" but I heard it's more hype then anything.
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Old 3-Sep-2013, 8:52 PM   #18
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Just spoke with the fine folks at solid signal and the recommended the Winegard HD 7084P, Attenuator: 1296F, and Amplifier: AP8700.
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Old 3-Sep-2013, 11:22 PM   #19
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Just spoke with the fine folks at solid signal and the recommended the Winegard HD 7084P, Attenuator: 1296F, and Amplifier: AP8700.
I'm trying to think of something nice to say about that recommendation, but I'm coming up completely empty. It must have been done by someone who doesn't know an antler from an antenna. An all-channel antenna, a pre-amp, and an attenuator???? Has Michigan passed "medical" pot laws?

Look, you're in a deep, deep valley with granite walls 1000 to 2000' feet tall. The towers are behind the rim of the valley and all you'll ever get are reflections.

Pick a very directional high-VF antenna plus a very directional UHG antenna, a rotor, and a decent sensitive preamp and start experimenting.

I'd suggest either the single antenna already suggested or the premium system of a 10-element Winegard, a 91XG, a PA18 with UVSJ, and a capable rotor. Mount it all up in the air and give it a whirl. you'll get whatever is available, depending on your level of patience.
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Old 4-Sep-2013, 1:16 AM   #20
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For shot at reliable reception.

My recommendations are still the same.

When setting up and testing the system , leave the antenna clamps a little loose , tip the front of the antenna/s up so the antenna is pointed at mountain ridge.

When is all adjusted for best reception , then can bend the mast pipe and tighten every thing.

Tv antenna rotators Are Not channel surfing friendly , must wait for antenna to rotate , and Will Be Domestic issues about the direction the antenna is aimed.

Remote control A/B antenna switching Is Channel Surfing Friendly , press the button on the hand held remote control , change antennas and keep on channel surfing.
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