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Old 24-Jan-2017, 4:21 PM   #1
DTesch357
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Antenna recommendation for Chicago Suburbs?

10 feet above ground level: http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...e6a4963ec3dbf6

30 feet above ground level: http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...e6a4ea7fef6cf1

Looking for recommendations that will allow me to get the Chicago broadcasted stations for my home and be able to support about 4 TV's.

I'm assuming I'd be looking at some sort of attic or roof mount antenna, and possibly some sort of signal amplifier to support the splitting to multiple TV's. I'd also like to make sure this antenna picks up CBS, which is a VHF (I think? The hard one to get) (Channel 2) station and notoriously hard to get ahold of in the suburbs.

I had this antenna eyeballed on Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/Winegard-HD76...t%2BHBU44&th=1

Thank you for the advice!

Last edited by DTesch357; 24-Jan-2017 at 4:26 PM.
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Old 24-Jan-2017, 7:21 PM   #2
rabbit73
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Hello, DTesch357

Have you moved since your last thread, or are you still in the same location?

Help a Newbie with Chicago Reception!
http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=14653

There is a big difference in signal strength between your two reports because of terrain obstructions; the higher the antenna is, the better.
Quote:
I'd also like to make sure this antenna picks up CBS, which is a VHF (I think? The hard one to get) (Channel 2) station and notoriously hard to get ahold of in the suburbs.
Yes, WBBM has been hard to get, especially since the transition from analog to digital. After the transition, it was on VHF-Low real channel 3 and reception was difficult because of the high noise level on VHF-Low that caused interference to its digital signal.

It is now transmitted on VHF-High real channel 12 with its old virtual channel number 2.1 to retain its identity to viewers.

I suggest you try the Winegard HD7694P in the attic first in different locations aimed at 110 degrees magnetic with just one TV. Don't drill any holes yet. If the signals are too weak, add a preamp like the Antennas Direct Juice, Channel Master 7778, or RCA TVPRAMP1R.

If you can't get good reception for one TV even with a preamp, you can try separate UHF and VHF antennas with more gain in the attic. If it still doesn't work, you will need to move the 7694 outside.

Once you have good reception for one TV, then add a 4-way passive splitter. If the signals are too weak with the splitter, replace the splitter with a Channel Master 3414 distribution amp, which is a splitter and amp combined.

Are there any trees or other buildings in the signal path from Chicago?
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Last edited by rabbit73; 24-Jan-2017 at 8:05 PM.
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Old 24-Jan-2017, 7:38 PM   #3
ADTech
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A small U/V combo aimed at the Willis (fka Sears) Tower should suffice. You probably don't need any amplification unless you have a very extensive signal distribution system.

WBBM's main programming is available on their channel 26 translator, probably doesn't reach you. Alternatively, their main programming is now carried as sub-channels on WMEU, UHF channel 32, which your report indicates should be easily received on any non-compromised UHF antenna making high-VHF reception irrelevant.
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Old 24-Jan-2017, 10:00 PM   #4
DTesch357
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Thanks Rabbit. Yes, I moved, and I never got the antenna up and running at the old place, and I figured bringing up a 2 year old forum thread wasn't proper forum etiquette. I did reference the prior thread, but I found the HBU44 that was recommended there wasn't available any longer, hence the new thread.

Thank you for the feedback. I'm going to order the Wineguard on Amazon and try to get it up and running in the attic this weekend.
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Old 25-Jan-2017, 10:48 AM   #5
Stereocraig
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Wbbm

I've always wondered if it's due to the terrain, or the pattern, that I am 47 miles to the North and have never had so much as a hiccup from them, even w/ just an 8 bay.
Previous to the transition though, it was always the absolute worst station, even when I lived 14 miles closer.
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Old 25-Jan-2017, 11:07 AM   #6
ADTech
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Prior to the digital transition, WBBM operated their digital facility on low VHF channel 3 at a relatively low power level along side their channel 2 analog transmission.

I was still relatively new here when the digital transition occurred. If a Chicago area code popped up on the caller ID for an inbound call, I would cringe because WBBM was the reason for almost all of those calls. It took them a couple of years to add that channel 26 translator and they finally put their programming on WMEU a couple of months ago, almost 8 years after the transition.
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Last edited by ADTech; 25-Jan-2017 at 11:12 AM.
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Old 25-Jan-2017, 3:35 PM   #7
Stereocraig
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What I was asking, was why is he having problems at 39 miles, when I'm not having any at 47.

I have no experiences w/ their channel 3 transmissions.
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Old 27-Jan-2017, 2:22 PM   #8
DTesch357
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Honestly I haven't tried CBS recently; all the in-house antennas we used previously couldn't pick it up.
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Old 27-Jan-2017, 3:11 PM   #9
ADTech
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Quote:
What I was asking, was why is he having problems at 39 miles, when I'm not having any at 47.
Ask any real estate agent what drives the value of your home.

Quote:
I have no experiences w/ their channel 3 transmissions.
That was turned off sometime in 2009. I don't recall if WBBM went early (January), national deadline (June) or if they were a designated night light station (up to several months later).

Quote:
Honestly I haven't tried CBS recently; all the in-house antennas we used previously couldn't pick it up.
Which is why WBBM has made each of those refinements I mentioned. Many indoor antenna users have never had decent indoor reception of WBBM's digital broadcasting, many may never even under their current configuration.
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Last edited by ADTech; 27-Jan-2017 at 3:23 PM.
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Old 27-Jan-2017, 3:15 PM   #10
DTesch357
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Thank you ADTech.

I went with the Wineguard I linked in my original post, and have someone coming to install it in my attic on Tuesday.
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