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NyteOwl 30-Nov-2014 6:55 PM

Antenna suggestions, please...
Here is the link to the results from my TV Signal Analysis:

I live in South Florida, north of Miami, south of West Palm Beach, and WNW of Fort Lauderdale. I have a one-story ranch style home, but one side of the house does have a pitched roof covered with shingles. There is a crawl space underneath, not really an attic, because even at it's highest point there is not enough room for one to stand up, but there is plenty of room for an antenna, which would be maybe 10-12 feet above ground level.

Besides looking for antenna recommendations, I'm wondering if I would also need a rotor to orient the antenna for best reception, depending on what station I want to watch.

Thanks in advance for your time and advice...jack

Jake V 30-Nov-2014 9:46 PM

You have a very nice TV Fool Report.

Attics are often times horrible places for antennas - especially if there is a lot of metal. It would be useful to know your roofing materials, and if they include metal or terracotta.

Before spending lots of money I'd do the following test. Take a basic, inexpensive, non-amplified indoor antenna (example like, use what you have) up to your attic and see what you get and don't get. Connect it to a length of new coax (you'll need a female to female coax connector) and then run it to one television. Aim the UHF loop north/south. Run the auto-program on the tv twice. Make a list of what you get and don't get (put them in the order of your TV Fool Report to make it easy for the people here to give recommendations). You might already have what you need to perform such a test, or maybe you can borrow it.

Chances are the little indoor antenna might not be powerful enough in the attic. But it will be a reasonable measuring stick to check conditions in your attic. You might repeat it on top of the television and add that data, too. That would allow a comparison between the living room and attic.

There should be a solution without a rotor. What is needed is an antenna that does not have a strong rejection from the rear, so that if you point it north it will also pick up signals from the south. And if the attic proves to be unfriendly to an antenna, a small outdoor antenna should do fine (others will comment).

NyteOwl 30-Nov-2014 10:43 PM

Thanks for the speedy response, Jake.

My roof is covered with your basic bituminous roofing shingles, my "attic" is empty, and there is no metal to speak of as it's wood construction and I don't store anything up there. There's the first floor ceiling rafters, insulation, the central AC plenum ductwork, and the pitched roof rafters. Standard roof construction, plywood covered with tar paper covered with shingles.

I'll see what I can do about testing as what I have now is...nothing. I got rid of my satellite service months ago and have been streaming everything using Netflix, Roku, and Amazon Prime. I've just started investigating what options are available to me to capture signals from Miami, Ft Laud, and West Palm.

Maybe I should consider mounting an antenna on my old satellite dish bracket..?

Jake V 30-Nov-2014 11:27 PM

If you have a satellite dish bracket/pole available, and it has a line of sight to both the north and the south (meaning the roof is not in the way facing one direction) then I would definitely use it. If the coax is still there and in good condition you can also re-use it. If there are splitters to different televisions it may or may not be usable (check the part number and post it).

Since the signals come from both north and south you'll need an antenna that can accept signals from both ends. I'll let others make a recommendation on that.

tomfoolery 1-Dec-2014 12:55 PM

If it were me, I'd put an HBU11 or HBU22 (Radio Shack carries them) or ANT751r on that satellite mast and see what I can get to the south. They're all high-VHF/UHF, so they're pretty small. Assuming it's not looking right into another building or trees.

But the bulk of your stations are to the south, with all the majors, so unless there's something in particular you want from the north, I wouldn't even bother. With a low gain antenna, you'll get some of that off the back anyway, depending on the antenna and the view to the north.

You might want to also consider the Winegard Freevision, sold at Home Depot and other places. No real specs on it, but you have strong signals and flat terrain, so I would think even a cheap indoor antenna would work, especially outdoors.

ADTech 1-Dec-2014 2:16 PM

This is a situation where I typically recommend a ClearStream 2V without it's reflector. It will receive equally from the front and rear. All you really need to do is get it up in the air so it can "see" in both directions.

Your signals are strong enough that an attic location should work well. Just keep the antenna as far away from the metal stuff as reasonably possible so as to avoid blockages or reflections from the metal.

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