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Old 19-Oct-2018, 3:40 PM   #1
CrackedHead
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Antenna, Pre-amp, and splitters...

Hello,

Here is my setup, I have linked directly to the products if I can. I have a DB4E antenna that goes to a Winegard PS-1403 pre-amp. The pre-amp plugs into a RCA 3 way splitter that is good only for up to 900mhz. Off that splitter it goes to a garage TV and then to the basement to an RCA 8 way splitter also only good for up to 900mhz.

So my issue is that I seem to have a very high signal strength according to the TV tuner, but it blinks out every 5 minutes or so for a couple of seconds. In my signature you can see my signal analysis, I am tuning to the Madison, WI stations. Primarily 3.1, 27.1, and 47.1. I was reading up on splitters and have found several references to needing 1000ghz or more. Before I buy a couple of powered Channel Masters, do you think this is my issue? Do I need the powered Channel Masters if I already have a pre-amp?

If you see anything else that can help me out I would appreciate it!

Thanks
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Old 19-Oct-2018, 3:44 PM   #2
CrackedHead
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I should mention the TV antenna is 15 feet off the ground. I moved into this house with the splitter setup. The antenna and pre-amp worked very well at my old house.
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Old 19-Oct-2018, 4:50 PM   #3
Tower Guy
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The PS-1403 is a power inserter for a preamp mounted at the antenna. To figure out your problem we would need to know the model of the preamp itself.

The 900 MHz splitters that you have now are fine, but you have about 15 dB of loss with both the 3-way and 8-way in series. The lengths of coax also have loss, so please estimate the distances.

Another problem is that the DB4e that you have is a UHF only antenna. You have one station on VHF now and another that will be moving to VHF due to the channel changing repacking that is underway.
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Old 19-Oct-2018, 7:20 PM   #4
rabbit73
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Your link to an FM signal report is only a link to enter the information for a report. FM reports don't link like the TVFool reports; you have to show an image.

However, I did an FM report based on my estimate of your location and created an active link to the report:
http://www.fmfool.com/modeling/tmp/0...e/Radar-FM.png

There is a remote chance that the two strongest FM transmitters could interfere with TV reception.

As Tower Guy mentioned, WISC CBS will be moving to VHF-High channel 11 during Repack Phase 9:
https://www.rabbitears.info/repackch...=&lss=&status=

which is 3/14/2020 to 5/1/2020

WREX NBC is also on VHF-High, but it is in another direction; you already have WMTV NBC.
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Last edited by rabbit73; 19-Oct-2018 at 8:17 PM.
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Old 19-Oct-2018, 10:45 PM   #5
ADTech
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Your splitters only need to cover up to 700 MHz, the current limit of broadcast television signals. There is no need to replace them just for the frequency rating you indicated.


If you have the PS1403 installed but no actual amplifier installed, you need to remove the PS1403. The DB4e's balun isn't affected by having a "hot" coax, but other antennas will be,
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Old 26-Feb-2019, 1:59 PM   #6
CrackedHead
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tower Guy View Post
Another problem is that the DB4e that you have is a UHF only antenna. You have one station on VHF now and another that will be moving to VHF due to the channel changing repacking that is underway.
Can you expand on this? I would need another antenna to get VHF?

Sorry I didn't respond earlier to this thread. I have been busy with other commitments.

But I am back now. 2 weeks ago the wind blew down my DB4E antenna is no more. Most of the bow ties are broken.

So is there an antenna package you would suggest? Or do I need a pre-amp, UHF, VHF, and FM antennas? Can all those signals come down the same coax line or do I need to run multiple runs?

Thanks all for your knowledge!
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Old 26-Feb-2019, 2:54 PM   #7
CrackedHead
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Would something like this work well?

https://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=hdb8x-lite-kit

This would allow me to point the antenna's in both directions, both cities Madison, WI and Rockford, IL are in opposite directions.

When I sent in the form to suggest an antenna to Solidsignal they recommended this:

https://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=at-414b

Would a Pre-amp like this also be what I would need?
https://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=cm-7777


The coax runs from the antenna to the first splitter is about 50 feet, then the TV with the longest run is 70 feet away. The other 2 TV's are around 30 feet.

Last edited by CrackedHead; 26-Feb-2019 at 3:44 PM.
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Old 26-Feb-2019, 3:45 PM   #8
ADTech
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If you still have your damaged DB4e, it can be repaired with a little work. We can send you the parts, as needed. You'd have to drill out the rivets and re-install the bowties with common hardware and replacement holders.

Your new requirement post-repack (after this October) will be for a UHF/VHF combo antenna as WISC is moving from UHF 50 down to VHF 11. Currently, there is a VHF station out of Rockford, WREX, that is on VHF 13 but you indicated Madison as your primary concern.

The antenna you referenced at Solid Signal is another UHF-only design. It does not meet the requirements for reception after October.

We do offer a simple clip-on VHF dipole that easily adds a modest level of VHF performance to any of our current and recent UHF models. I'd have to perform a signal analysis based on your address to determine if it is appropriate or not. Just fill out the form on on our website (link is in my signature below) and we can take it fro there. Same for any parts requirements.


Also, if you still have the PS1403 installed but not the corresponding Winegard preamplifier module, that power inserter should be removed as it is not doing anything useful and opens up the possibility of other equipment getting damaged due to power where it's not supposed to be.
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Last edited by ADTech; 26-Feb-2019 at 3:48 PM.
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Old 26-Feb-2019, 3:52 PM   #9
CrackedHead
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ADTech View Post
The antenna you referenced at Solid Signal is another UHF-only design. It does not meet the requirements for reception after October.
The one I linked to is listed as UHF/VHF.

And the one that solidsignal suggested has this in the description:
That's where the UFO shines with it's full VHF/UHF 360 reception.

I edited that post 3 times adding information people requested. You might have seen it when I only had a bit of it. I figured that would be better than 3 different replies. I'm not trying to argue with you, I genuinely want to learn. But it seems like a pretty steep curve


I will fill out your form also, thanks!
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Old 26-Feb-2019, 3:55 PM   #10
CrackedHead
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ADTech View Post
Also, if you still have the PS1403 installed but not the corresponding Winegard preamplifier module, that power inserter should be removed as it is not doing anything useful and opens up the possibility of other equipment getting damaged due to power where it's not supposed to be.
There is a pre-amp on the antenna still, but I didn't make note of it as I thought I would have to get a new setup anyway. I will go home tonight and get the number off of it.
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Old 26-Feb-2019, 4:20 PM   #11
ADTech
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Yep, I think we were both entering information at the same time. That can kind of cross things up a bit.

Quote:
The one I linked to is listed as UHF/VHF.
Assuming you're referring to the 8-bay, I can assure you it's a UHF antenna. Any VHF reception it might offer is coincidental to its design and is going to be of varying capabilities at odd angles. Usually relatively short range VHF is what would be expected. I evaluated that antenna a number of years ago when the Chinese manufacturer sent us a bunch of samples trying to get us to buy and resell them. I've seen the same behavior from any of the UHF antennas that I've field or range tested.

Quote:
That's where the UFO shines with it's full VHF/UHF 360 reception.
When it comes to omni-directional antennas, I usually recommend that they be reserved for very simple reception situations, like a farm out in the middle of cornfields with no trees around. In an area or an installation where multi-path is a concern, an omni is usually the first to fail as it has no capability to focus on anything or to reject interference coming from unusual or unexpected directions. While I have not evaluated the Antop omni, I can comment that it would be quite an engineering feat to actually achieve true omni characteristics across the whole design bandwidth. I'd rather expect something along the lines of "quasi-" omnidirectional behavior that sort of approximates omni performance.
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Old 26-Feb-2019, 5:30 PM   #12
CrackedHead
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So this is the pre-amplifier I have:

https://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=ap8700

Would that still work with an additional antenna?

Also, would adding a 2nd antenna to get Rockford be worth it at this time?

Thanks again!
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