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Old 15-Apr-2012, 2:58 AM   #1
arejay73
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OTA Install Advice

Hardware:
Channel Master CM-4220HD
SignalVision Digital Subscriber Amp SV-A15-8PRS
TV in Living Room
TV in Office
TV in Master Bedroom

Signal Map:
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...3616e912d27aa7
Background:

I have installed the CM-4220HD on the East Side of the house at about 25' up. It is pointed at about 140 degrees to try in be in the "general direction" of all the channels that I want in my green section of the chart.

The antenna is about 60 feet of coax before it hits the house box to be split to the different rooms. I noticed that when I wire the antenna directly to one TV I get about all of the channels. Some channels like 8.1, 14.1 come in but pixelate at 5 to 8 second intervals. The rest seem fine. Problem number 1.

When I install the SV-A15-8PRS AMP without power, just to split the signal to the three rooms then I only get about 5-8 channels and those are hit and miss at times. The nearest power source for my amp is located about 30 feet away and is outside. That concerns me, cause I think about the rain. Problem Number 2. However, since the day was nice and clear I decided to power it up and see what the results were. Basically they we similar as the antenna direct to one tv. Now all three TVs had clear channels with the exception of the above mentioned 8.1, 14.1 and a few others.

Question:

So would upgrading my antenna to a CM-4221HD or CM-4228HD improve my signal reception so I would not have to power my AMP to push the signal to all my TVs?

Or should I do both upgrade the antenna and figure out a weather safe power source for my amp, or buy individual amps at each tv to improve the signal reception?
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 5:28 PM   #2
signals unlimited
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You have two problems. The amp. and the amp.
When the amplifier is on, it may be overloading due to the strong signals from nearby stations. When it's off (powered down) it blocks the signal because of the active electronics. The antenna you are using will work better that the 4228HD because the beamwidth of the 4228 is narrow and will make aiming more difficult. Just eliminate the amp, and install a two set splitter. All will be well!
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 5:36 PM   #3
GroundUrMast
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The least expensive option and the option that 'jumps off the page' is to buy an Ideal brand #85-133 3-way splitter. (About $5 at Home Depot). Remove the amplified splitter, without power it is an unpredictable attenuator... it's not intend to work without power and it's not intended for wet locations. (Use the splitter port labeled with the lowest loss to drive the longest cable run or weakest tuner.)

Unless you are blocked by dense trees, the CM4220 should do well except for real channels 2 through 13. Another option would be an Antennas Direct CS5, which is intended as a high-VHF antenna, but also does well as a UHF antenna in strong signal conditions as yours. The UHF pattern of the CS5 tends to be somewhat omnidirectional.

Alternately, consider adding an Antennacraft Y5713 with your existing antenna. You can combine the UHF and VHF signals with little loss using a UVSJ (UHF/VHF Signal Joiner) The Antennacraft antenna and UVSJ may be stocked at Radio Shack or you can certainly find them online. The WGTV and WPBA signals should be 'rock solid'. This option may not make the signal from WPXA as solid as the CS5 option but you may be able to experiment with removing the reflector screen from the CM4220 to allow it to receive more signal from the rear.

(You have a lot of strong signals, including FM stations that don't appear on your TVFR. This argues against using an amplifier unless you are going to be feeding a large number of antenna outlets, in which case you would need to use a high-input amplifier spec'd for the application. An overloaded amplifier will leave you with some or all channels less reliable depending on the severity of the overload condition.)
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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 15-Apr-2012 at 9:22 PM.
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 5:56 PM   #4
Electron
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Tv antennas and Tv reception

The Signal Vision amplifier does not have 'pass trough' capability when it is off or unpluged. What little bit of signal that is received is being received by the center wire of the coax that is connected to the 'Inactive' Nonactive' 'Not working' circuit of the amplifier. (the center wire of the coax is what carries the Tv signal). The Tv signals are Strong at your location. Remove ALL of the amplifier. And install a simple common 3 way splitter. Aim the antenna at about 144 degree magnetic compass. Here is how to aim the CM4220HD antenna , http://www.kyes.com/antenna/pointing/pointing.html. These >< shaped antenna reception elements will face the tv transmitters at about 144 degree magnetic compass (south east).
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 6:10 PM   #5
signals unlimited
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If you cant find a three way splitter, use a four way splitter and plug the open port with a 75 ohm terminater. You should also ground your coax using a 75 ohm ground block and a ground rod at the point where your coax enters your home, or inside to the ground buss of your service panel. If you need to receive stations from other directions, I would recommend an Aspen Eagel rotor. This will operate thru your coax. If you go with that rotor you will need to use a splitter with a DC pass port to to connect the rotor to the control box. You can purchase both at www.solidsignals.com
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 6:35 PM   #6
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Tv antennas and Tv reception

A 4 way splitter will further reduce the signal strength of weak tv signals in the yellow and red reception zones. There is no such thing as a 75 ohm ground block. Ground rods are 6 feet long , are you suggesting that the question asker drive more ground rods ?? only one ground rod is required or needed at the house and that ground is driven into the ground when the house is built. Telling this question asker to open up the electric service panel is the same as telling this question asker to get into Big Trouble. A antenna rotor is not required or needed for tv reception. The Eagle Aspen antenna rotor has proven to be unreliable. ATTN: question asker , if you have questions ask , Signals Unlimited to give you in depth explainations.
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 6:42 PM   #7
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A simple common easy to find 3 way splitter will work just fine. A $49.95 super whiz bang certified gold plated HD (ego pumping) splitter is not required or needed.
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 6:56 PM   #8
signals unlimited
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electron View Post
A 4 way splitter will further reduce the signal strength of weak tv signals in the yellow and red reception zones. There is no such thing as a 75 ohm ground block. Ground rods are 6 feet long , are you suggesting that the question asker drive more ground rods ?? only one ground rod is required or needed at the house and that ground is driven into the ground when the house is built. Telling this question asker to open up the electric service panel is the same as telling this question asker to get into Big Trouble. A antenna rotor is not required or needed for tv reception. The Eagle Aspen antenna rotor has proven to be unreliable. ATTN: question asker , if you have questions ask , Signals Unlimited to give you in depth explainations.
You know exactly what I mean by a 75 ohm ground block. A four way splitter with a terminator is not a bad choice with all of that signal. If there is no ground rod near the point of entry, driving one in at that point is no big deal. I have installed over 300 Aspen Eagel rotors over a period of five years and have a very low failure rate! less than 3%. As for the buss, I would recommend that to be installed by a qualified electrician. Anything else?
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 10:08 PM   #9
Electron
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Tv antennas and Tv reception

Signals Unlimited. Your first clue from the 'get go' is that this question asker stated that the amplifier does not work when it is unpluged and does not know why. It is not me that you are providing information to. It is the question askers that most likley know little to nothing about antennas or electric. The idea here at tvfool is to help question askers get tv reception not put them off or scare them away. There was a time when I recommended the Eagle Aspen rotors , I stopped doing it because the question askers use bad coax to connect it with , non power passing splitters , multipul splitters , coax thats connected together with wire nuts and on and on.

Last edited by Electron; 15-Apr-2012 at 10:25 PM.
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Old 15-Apr-2012, 10:41 PM   #10
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I agree that the Eagel needs to be properly configured when using the one coax feature.
Keep in mind that if the asker is incapable of proper coax configuration a new dedecated coax for the rotor operation in order. Anyway, it is my opinion that when stations are in multipul directions a rotor is far less complicated than removing grids and using mulitpul antennas (unless they serve multipul bands). I will always recommend the rotor with all due precautions.
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Old 17-Apr-2012, 2:29 PM   #11
arejay73
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Installation Update

Thanks for all of the advice presented here. I wanted to give you guys an update to see if it would help.

I noticed on one of my TVs there was a signal strength meter. So, I decided to see what the numbers showed. It is not a technical measurement since it is only using percentages, but I think it helps me understand the situation.

So, I plugged the antenna directly into the outside coax which goes to the tv. here are the signal readings.

2-1 100%
5-1 100%
8-1 68%
8-2 58%
11-1 98%
14-1 49%
36-1 100%
46-1 100%
69-1 100%

I then had a only two way splitter lying around, it said something like 2500MHz on the front. I noticed the three way splitter recommended by GroundUrMast is 3GHz. I am hoping for better performance there. Here where the numbers when I placed the two way splitter.

14-1 drops to 8% I basically don't receive it anymore.
8-1 around 55-60%
my other main channels stayed pretty much the same.

So, I am going to get this three way splitter and try it. I would love to figure out a way to keep the lower reception channels that are received without the splitter connected without having to invest in a bigger/better or dual antennas. I am try to do this on a low budget. Maybe I will just have to do in stages where I get the First antenna working and then upgrade the install with a second antenna or more expensive antenna to pull in the weaker channels.

I will update this thread after I try with the three way splitter. Thanks again for your advice and expertise.
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Old 17-Apr-2012, 7:27 PM   #12
GroundUrMast
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It's not of great importance, but the Ideal 85-133 has a specified bandwidth of 5 to 1000 MHz which is more than needed for OTA signals which range from about 50 to 700 MHz. It sounds like your 2-way splitter is a satellite system design which will work just fine... but the extra band-width goes unused.

Your report continues to suggest that you could try removing the reflector screen from the CM4220 and expect better signal quality from WPXA.

Also, I'm still convinced that none of the UHF only antennas (such as the CM422X series) will do a good job receiving real channel 8. In addition to the Antennacraft Y5713 mentioned earlier, you may also want to consider the Antennas Direct C2 VHF Reflector Assembly which includes a VHF dipole and UVSJ.
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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 18-Apr-2012 at 4:33 AM. Reason: punctuation
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Old 18-Apr-2012, 3:33 PM   #13
arejay73
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Installation Update 2

I purchased the three way splitter recommended. After installation I am getting the expected results. The main channels in the ~144 degree direction come in just fine. The VHF channels like 8.x are hit or miss and of course the 14.x channels don't come in at all. But this was discussed has the antenna I have is not well suited for VHF and I need a rotor to get the channels in the other direction.

Conclusion, I will go like this for the moment and try the other recommendation of removing the reflector screen before going the antenna upgrade route.

The reflector screen is the waffle like grid on the back of the antenna?

Thanks again for all of the help.
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Old 18-Apr-2012, 5:06 PM   #14
GroundUrMast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arejay73 View Post
...

Conclusion, I will go like this for the moment and try the other recommendation of removing the reflector screen before going the antenna upgrade route.

The reflector screen is the waffle like grid on the back of the antenna?

...
That's correct.
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Old 18-Apr-2012, 9:39 PM   #15
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Tv antennas and Tv reception

Also the coax cable can be routed the the inside of the building , connected to the amplifier on the inside of the building.
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