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Old 23-Dec-2014, 7:38 PM   #1
generalfirst
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Type of Antenna to use

I am changing over from cable to antenna. I am now using a small window antenna which allows about 8 stations. I want to mount an antenna on roof (15' high). I need help in selecting proper antenna http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...d2439e0de04df6

Last edited by GroundUrMast; 22-Jan-2015 at 3:17 PM. Reason: repaired TVFR link
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Old 24-Dec-2014, 9:22 PM   #2
Ben Myers
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Eight stations is pretty good for an indoor antenna in your situation.

Last edited by GroundUrMast; 22-Jan-2015 at 3:18 PM. Reason: moved repaired TVFR link to opening post
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Old 25-Dec-2014, 3:11 AM   #3
generalfirst
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Type Of Antenna

Ben what would you suggest for a antenna for the roof. I lose the channels I now get quite often so I want to install something where the channels will not be lost so much of the time.
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Old 25-Dec-2014, 3:39 AM   #4
Tim
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Which are the stations that are 'must haves' for you?
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Old 25-Dec-2014, 3:46 AM   #5
generalfirst
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Channels

The main channels that are local are 8, 43, 21.
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Old 25-Dec-2014, 3:50 AM   #6
generalfirst
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Possible channels

I would love to get some channels that do not always show old movies. We get 49, 49-2 most of the time and it is always 40's an 50's movies. They repeat themselves constantly
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Old 26-Dec-2014, 12:06 AM   #7
Ben Myers
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Quote:
Originally Posted by generalfirst View Post
Ben what would you suggest for a antenna for the roof. I lose the channels I now get quite often so I want to install something where the channels will not be lost so much of the time.
If you are using an unamplified antenna, you might try an amplifier first. With outdoor antennas, extreme care must be used for personal safety and lightning protection, and most outdoor antennas are highly directional, so you pretty much have to decide which stations you want in advance or plan on installing a rotor. Incidentally, I get WGAL, WPMT, WGCB and WLYH here in Smithsburg Maryland, all with indoor antennas.
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Old 26-Dec-2014, 4:31 PM   #8
generalfirst
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Moving and amplifier

Thank you Ben for all your help. What is your feeling on moving the inside antenna up to the attic for better reception.
I also have an old amplifier (RCA Model #ANT1450BR. Would this be of any help?

Bob
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Old 26-Dec-2014, 6:18 PM   #9
Ben Myers
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I use a VHF/UHF combo up in my attic, aimed at Washington DC and connected to an A/B switch to make changing antennas easier. Some indoor antennas have built-in amplifiers, but if yours doesn't, I suggest you try the amplifier.
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Old 26-Dec-2014, 6:46 PM   #10
generalfirst
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Antennas

Ben so you have two antennas in your attic aimed in different directions. Where di you mount th switch?

Bob
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Old 26-Dec-2014, 7:21 PM   #11
Ben Myers
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One in the attic and a bowtie downstairs. Switch is actually bolted to the TV stand. I use an old VCR to switch between cable and over-the-air, but an A/B switch would work for this as well.

Last edited by Ben Myers; 26-Dec-2014 at 11:03 PM.
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Old 27-Dec-2014, 2:04 AM   #12
generalfirst
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Antennas

Is there any way two antennas could be mounted in the attic together facing different directions and hooked into a splitter and then run one cable down to TV? Just 2nd guessing.
Right now I am trying a small antenna leaning in the window by the TV. I am just trying to simplify better reception without going to an expensive antenna and motor. I just tried the old amplifier I had but could not tell any difference.
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Old 22-Jan-2015, 12:39 AM   #13
generalfirst
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Reception

I have relocated my RCA Model #1450BR antenna into attic area. The antenna is aimed North. This is a single story home (Rancher) with 30 year laminate shingles. Vinyl siding is lower then antenna. only obstruction is plywood and shingles.
I would like to find out what type of amplifier to put at TV for best reception of signal. An amplifier came with antenna but does not seem to help

I now receive 8.1, 8.2, 15.1, 15.2, 43.1, 43.2, 43.3, 49.1, 49.2 channels

Last edited by generalfirst; 22-Jan-2015 at 12:52 AM. Reason: Added info
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Old 22-Jan-2015, 3:59 PM   #14
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An amplifier is only able to amplify what arrives at it's input. If you feed an amplifier with a poor quality signal (one mixed with noise for example) the amplifier will increasing the level of both the desired signal and any noise, distortion or interference. This would theoretically leave you at a net of zero improvement in overall signal quality. But in practice, amplifiers generate noise internally as well as cause some distortion of the signals during the amplification process. So an amplifier can actually reduce the net signal quality. When you drive one amplifier with another, you greatly increase the chance that there will be a great deal of signal distortion due to the second amplifier being over driven by the high output of the first.

The ideal location for an amplifier (if one is needed) is at the antenna, ahead of the losses in the cables and splitters that lay between the antenna and tuner(s). This is because very small amounts of noise are generated in passive components so there is a fixed minimum amount of noise present... Once the signal is attenuated by the losses in your cable run, there is less difference between the level of the desired signal and the background noise of the system. Another way of saying this is, 'The net noise margin of the system is reduced by the losses in your cabling'.

The bottom line is, reliable reception begins with the antenna, it's location and aim. If the antenna is not able to deliver a reliable signal to a tuner when connected via a short cable (50' or less), an amplifier is not likely to solve the problem. You will usually need to consider using an antenna with more gain (antenna gain is different than amplifier gain), adjusting the aim, move the antenna to a location where a higher quality signal is present or a combination of these remedies.

If I was facing the same conditions shown in your TV Fool report, I would not hesitate to use an outdoor mounted antenna system. I'd likely choose a combination of antennas such as an Antennas Direct DB8E + Antennacraft Y5713. I'd perform this test before spending money on an amplifier: http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=13646
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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; 22-Jan-2015 at 4:41 PM. Reason: sp.
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Old 22-Jan-2015, 5:05 PM   #15
rickbb
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I second the combination of the bow tie for UHF and the Y5713 for VHF. You have more VHF channels than most people, (I only have one). Plus you have stations coming in from every direction. That makes a rotor with those directional antennas a good fit for your location.

With all that roof mounted, assuming less than 100 feet of cable length and no trees in the way, you should get more channels than you could watch.
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Old 22-Jan-2015, 9:59 PM   #16
Jason l
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Amp

for me my homemade eight bay outside with an amp I get 10 more channels than I did without the amp.if your old indoor amp improves your signal then a good preamp and antenna outside most likely will help.
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Old 22-Jan-2015, 10:34 PM   #17
generalfirst
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GroundUrMast View Post
An amplifier is only able to amplify what arrives at it's input. If you feed an amplifier with a poor quality signal (one mixed with noise for example) the amplifier will increasing the level of both the desired signal and any noise, distortion or interference. This would theoretically leave you at a net of zero improvement in overall signal quality. But in practice, amplifiers generate noise internally as well as cause some distortion of the signals during the amplification process. So an amplifier can actually reduce the net signal quality. When you drive one amplifier with another, you greatly increase the chance that there will be a great deal of signal distortion due to the second amplifier being over driven by the high output of the first.

The ideal location for an amplifier (if one is needed) is at the antenna, ahead of the losses in the cables and splitters that lay between the antenna and tuner(s). This is because very small amounts of noise are generated in passive components so there is a fixed minimum amount of noise present... Once the signal is attenuated by the losses in your cable run, there is less difference between the level of the desired signal and the background noise of the system. Another way of saying this is, 'The net noise margin of the system is reduced by the losses in your cabling'.

The bottom line is, reliable reception begins with the antenna, it's location and aim. If the antenna is not able to deliver a reliable signal to a tuner when connected via a short cable (50' or less), an amplifier is not likely to solve the problem. You will usually need to consider using an antenna with more gain (antenna gain is different than amplifier gain), adjusting the aim, move the antenna to a location where a higher quality signal is present or a combination of these remedies.

If I was facing the same conditions shown in your TV Fool report, I would not hesitate to use an outdoor mounted antenna system. I'd likely choose a combination of antennas such as an Antennas Direct DB8E + Antennacraft Y5713. I'd perform this test before spending money on an amplifier: http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=13646
Would the two units you suggest both be mounted on the same mast? How are they interconnected?
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Old 23-Jan-2015, 12:04 AM   #18
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I would place the UHF antenna (DB8E) at the top of the mast and the VHF antenna below it so that there is 3' to 4' of space between the two antennas. This means that a 5' Mast will be too short. 10' TV antenna mast has become hard to find so I have switched to using 1 3/8" diameter chain-link fence 'top rail' or 1" IMC electrical conduit. Both are in stock at the local big box home center.

If no preamplifier is used, or if you use a preamplifier with one input, you'll need a UHF/VHF combiner. Examples: http://www.amazon.com/Antennas-Direc.../dp/B008PBTPN4 & http://www.radioshack.com/vhf-uhf-go...l#.VMGa1zVVKlM The UHF/VHF combiner is a passive filter network that allows you to connect one UHF antenna and one VHF antenna to a common coax down-lead. If you use a preamplifier that is equipped with separate inputs for UHF and VHF antennas, you will not need the stand alone UHF/VHF combiner. The RCA TVPRAMP1R is a dual input preamp. It's my understanding that Antennas Direct has a new preamplifier that will be hitting the market soon, the advance information I have so far is that it is a single input design and it can tolerate a mix of strong and weak signal inputs.

But as I mentioned earlier, I would test reception of each antenna (using the procedure I linked to) before committing to the purchase of a preamp or combiner. Your TVFR suggests that you may be able to run with no amplification, but you're at the threshold. It's going to depend on how much loss there is in your cabling/splitting.
__________________
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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