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Old 29-Sep-2011, 5:32 PM   #1
be236
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Best (low-noise?) pre-amp?

Next on my list of "to-buys," is pre-amp...

Which is the best. I know that's a "loaded" question...

I've heard CPA-19, CM 7777, Motorola, and some Winegards are the best...

Looking through reviews on Amazon.com, they seem to be top-notch...

Anyone with their own good or bad experiences, recommendations?

Is the CPA-19 good (or optimized) only with their Antennas Direct antennas?
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Old 29-Sep-2011, 5:58 PM   #2
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Our CPA19 may be used with any TV antenna with 75 ohm connectors.
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Old 29-Sep-2011, 6:03 PM   #3
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The CPA-19 has two qualities that recommend it for your situation.

Low noise - It generates less noise internally than any other brand of consumer grade preamp.

High input capability - Many preamps are designed for use in weak signal areas. If you use the weak signal preamp in an area with strong signals, you risk overloading the amplifier which will distort some or all signals to the point that they can't be decoded error free.

The CM-7777 is a good amp, for weak signal areas.

The Winegard HDP-269 competes for the same applications as the CPA-19 but it produces slightly more noise internally.

http://www.kitztech.com/ offers very impressive noise performance, but they do not indicate high input capability. You could contact them if you're interested.
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Last edited by GroundUrMast; 29-Sep-2011 at 6:19 PM.
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Old 29-Sep-2011, 7:05 PM   #4
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Quote:
Low noise - It generates less noise internally than any other brand of consumer grade preamp.
Actually, the PA18 is quieter by a few fractions of a dB. It's the combination of the still low NF plus overload resistance (IP3 between 25 to 30 dB) that I like about the CPA19.

I haven't personally tested an HDP-269, so I can't offer any assessment of it's performance. It does enjoy a good reputation, something that doesn't come easily.
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 3:51 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by ADTech View Post
Actually, the PA18 is quieter by a few fractions of a dB. It's the combination of the still low NF plus overload resistance (IP3 between 25 to 30 dB) that I like about the CPA19.

I haven't personally tested an HDP-269, so I can't offer any assessment of it's performance. It does enjoy a good reputation, something that doesn't come easily.
Check out this site:

http://www.solidsignal.com/p/?p=3561

It shows CM 7777 has NF of 2.0 UHF, same as CPA-19.

And it shows PA-18 has a HIGHER NF. hmm...
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 6:27 AM   #6
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The folks at AD made an improvement to the CPA-18 a while back. Many vendors have not updated their ad copy. http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=905

The CM7777 is fine so far as NF is concerned. But the high input capability of the CPA-19 tips the scale in its favor.
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 6:51 AM   #7
be236
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GroundUrMast View Post
The CPA-19 has two qualities that recommend it for your situation.

Low noise - It generates less noise internally than any other brand of consumer grade preamp.

High input capability - Many preamps are designed for use in weak signal areas. If you use the weak signal preamp in an area with strong signals, you risk overloading the amplifier which will distort some or all signals to the point that they can't be decoded error free.

The CM-7777 is a good amp, for weak signal areas.

The Winegard HDP-269 competes for the same applications as the CPA-19 but it produces slightly more noise internally.

http://www.kitztech.com/ offers very impressive noise performance, but they do not indicate high input capability. You could contact them if you're interested.

I still don't understand what high input capability means....

As for that Kitztech pre-amp with 0.4db NF, here are some reviews:

http://www.rabbitears.info/blog/inde...Kitztech-KT200

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1328965
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 3:15 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by be236 View Post
I still don't understand what high input capability means....

...
GroundUrMast explained it clearly in the post that you copied. It means that the preamp will tolerate high-powered signals without saturating and will not ouput signals that are too powerful for your TV tuner to handle.
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 5:00 PM   #9
be236
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GroundUrMast explained it clearly in the post that you copied. It means that the preamp will tolerate high-powered signals without saturating and will not ouput signals that are too powerful for your TV tuner to handle.
Ah... okay.. but then what Spec line item should I look for? Just that it says "high input?"

Also, I will be aiming the antenna at the low/weak stations only. So hopefully the stronger Seattle stations don't get a strong signal since I'm not pointed at their direction, so maybe this "high input" should be less of a concern.

I'll have a 2nd antenna just to get the Seattle stations, which it does just fine.

Last edited by be236; 30-Sep-2011 at 7:13 PM.
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 5:05 PM   #10
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As for that KT pre-amp with 0.4db, I'm hesitant about it, since it's not weatherproof and you have to make your own enclosure, which I dont know how do to correctly.

My idea would be to just put a grocery plastic bag and rubberband tie it. heheh... ya, I know... bad idea.. heh.
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 5:06 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by be236 View Post
Next on my list of "to-buys," is pre-amp...

Which is the best. I know that's a "loaded" question...
The best preamp is;

1. Doesn't overload in your location.
2. Has sufficient gain to overcome your distribution losses.
3. Has a noise figure low enough to pick up your weakest station.
4. Low cost and high reliability.

Suggestion of a preamp without a TVFool report is like asking what's the best fish to catch without knowing if you are in a stream, lake, river, or ocean?
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 5:26 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by be236 View Post
you have to make your own enclosure, which I dont know how do to correctly.
http://www.polycase.com/wp-27f
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 5:28 PM   #13
be236
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Originally Posted by Tower Guy View Post
The best preamp is;

1. Doesn't overload in your location.
2. Has sufficient gain to overcome your distribution losses.
3. Has a noise figure low enough to pick up your weakest station.
4. Low cost and high reliability.

Suggestion of a preamp without a TVFool report is like asking what's the best fish to catch without knowing if you are in a stream, lake, river, or ocean?
Yup, already done all that, got Tvfool report, posted many questions in other forums, etc...

Looking to get channels with NM of -7 to -15 dB... There are two channels like -10dB and -7dB, that if I can get , I will call a success.. got my antennas narrowed down to 91XG/CM3023 ... and know my line loss is maybe 6dB, from 100ft (total) RG6 cable run and maybe 2-3 combiners....
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 5:39 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by be236 View Post

Looking to get channels with NM of -7 to -15 dB.......
It's the strength of the strongest stations that matters more than the NM of the weakest station.

I can't find your TVfool report posted elsewhere.
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 7:01 PM   #15
be236
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Originally Posted by Tower Guy View Post
It's the strength of the strongest stations that matters more than the NM of the weakest station.

I can't find your TVfool report posted elsewhere.
Hmmm.. I dont understand that. I would think that it's the NM dB value at your particular location regardless of the broadcaster power Kwatts that matter.

I mean I would rather have a high NM value from a weak TV station, rather than a strong TV station giving me a weak (low) NM value, no?

Anyways, here's my Tvfool report (set it for Pending Digital).. I want to get the Cxxx stations (Vancouver stations) in the weak NM ranges:

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...60b5ef0bf930b4

Also for a baseline comparison, I can get channel 27 KBTC at 2dB NM with my old Radio Shack VU-190 VHF/UHF combo antenna, with about 75 feet RG6 cable total, with maybe 2-3 combiners just fine, no pre-amp on my DTV converter box (Dish Pal or Artec model brand).

Last edited by be236; 30-Sep-2011 at 7:11 PM.
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Old 30-Sep-2011, 7:55 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by be236 View Post

I mean I would rather have a high NM value from a weak TV station, rather than a strong TV station giving me a weak (low) NM value, no?
The strong TV station limits the ability to insert a preamp without added distortion. That makes it harder to pick up a weak signal.

The ideal situation is all TV stations to have identical NM values.

Background information about distortion is here.
http://www.microwaves101.com/encyclo...101.cfm#causes
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