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Old 15-Oct-2015, 11:36 PM   #1
Mecha Archzilla
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Looking to install an optimal set-up

Hello everyone, and thank you in advance for helping me.

Here is my report

I have just moved and am looking to install an antenna set-up. We were living in Columbia SC and used a Mohu Leaf split to 2 TVs for about 2 years. We got great reception and all of the local channels. The Leaf only got us a few stations in Camden.

I bought a Clearstream 2V-J3 from Walmart and tried it around a few locations. It is now hanging from a nail in the attic facing approximately 220-240 degrees magnetic with 50' of coax going through my attic access to one TV.

Obviously temporary and not ideal, but we get all of the stations listed in green on the report. 47 and 48 do give us some problems sometimes. Now that we know that we can get reception here it is time to create a more permanent set-up, but I want to make sure I am doing it right and have the best equipment possible for the job. I am willing to spend time/money to get it right.

So, here is what I would like to ask:

1. Is there any chance of getting either the Florence or Charlotte stations at my location? The peak of my roof is about 30' above ground level. There are some trees in the way but not super thick.

2. The ideal set-up I am imagining will be something like this: Roof top antenna (or antennae if I can get Florence or Charlotte), Combiner, PreAmp?, coax going to cable distribution box with splitter to 8 rooms. Is this reasonable?

3. If it is reasonable, what would be the best equipment to use for each part of the system?

I realize this is a lot, so feel free to not answer everything.

Thank You,
Mecha Archzilla
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Old 16-Oct-2015, 6:26 PM   #2
Tim
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Based on your report, the stations from Florence to your east are weak, 2-edge signals with co-channel interference warnings and the Charlotte stations are even worse. It would require quite an effort with large antennas and preamps to even have a reasonable chance of decent reception.

It sounds like you are getting good reception of most of the Columbia stations with the exception of 47 and 48 which would probably improve if you moved the antenna to your rooftop.

After moving the antenna to the roof, if you are still getting good signals on all the stations feeding just one TV, you could probably get by with a distribution amp to feed the signal out to eight locations such as the Channel Master CM3418.
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Old 16-Oct-2015, 6:52 PM   #3
rabbit73
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I agree with Tim.

The curvature of the earth blocks your signals from the north and east. Stick with the local signals from the SW.
Quote:
we get all of the stations listed in green on the report. 47 and 48 do give us some problems sometimes.
Unless you can get your antenna above the trees, you will have trouble even with your local signals. See attachment 1.

You have some strong local FM signals that might interfere with TV reception. Insert an FM filter in the coax line before the distribution amp. See attachment 2.
http://www.mcmelectronics.com/produc...-FM-88-/33-341
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Mecha ArchzillaTVFtrees.JPG (256.1 KB, 459 views)
File Type: jpg Mecha ArchzillaTVF FM est.JPG (110.7 KB, 425 views)
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Last edited by rabbit73; 16-Oct-2015 at 7:16 PM.
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Old 16-Oct-2015, 9:16 PM   #4
Mecha Archzilla
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Ok, thanks guys.

A little disappointing to not get Florence, but oh well. I will be up on the roof to test the antenna next week. I will go ahead and put the fm trap in the line and test to 1 TV. Hopefully, everything picks up good.

I will post results after the test.

Thanks!
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Old 16-Oct-2015, 11:35 PM   #5
rabbit73
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Coverage map for WJPM with antenna at 75 feet. You can see there isn't much signal left by the time it reaches your location:



And you can see how the curvature of the earth causes a problem for the WJPM signal:

Attached Images
File Type: jpg Mecha ArchzillaTVFcovWJPM.JPG (162.0 KB, 1112 views)
File Type: jpg Mecha ArchzillaTVFp2WJPM.JPG (128.6 KB, 1019 views)
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Last edited by rabbit73; 16-Oct-2015 at 11:53 PM.
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Old 17-Oct-2015, 1:12 AM   #6
Mecha Archzilla
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Quick update:

I went to radio shack today and bought an FM filter. Brought the antenna out of the attic and downstairs to get everything ready to test on the roof. Couldn't resist and attached the filter and hooked it up to my downstairs TV with the antenna sitting on a couch about 4' off the ground. To my surprise I got 22 channels, including 48 which I have never gotten except in that 1 spot in my attic. The most I have ever gotten was 16 downstairs.

So...
High hopes for the roof mount.
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Old 19-Oct-2015, 9:53 PM   #7
Mecha Archzilla
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Update 2:

I got on the roof today and tested the antenna to 1 TV. Got all of the stations no problem. I decided to have a professional come out to install the antenna permanently and run the cable.

Here is what I asked for:

Antenna installation on the roof with proper grounding, RG6 run to FM trap run to powered distribution amp with RG6 run to 8 rooms. I also asked him to install some cat6 ethernet cable to 2 rooms while he was here. They are coming friday.

1. Is there anything else I should ask for while he is out here?

2. Is there anything I should be watching for to make sure they do the job right?

3. Estimate was $600, sounds ok to me, with all of the work they are doing, what do ya'll think?
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Old 19-Oct-2015, 10:20 PM   #8
rabbit73
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Quote:
I got on the roof today and tested the antenna to 1 TV. Got all of the stations no problem.
That was a good idea. Thanks for the report.
Quote:
Is there anything I should be watching for to make sure they do the job right?
Will they test the system to make sure it works? Do they guarantee results, or are they just doing a time and materials job?
Quote:
Estimate was $600, sounds ok to me, with all of the work they are doing, what do ya'll think?
That sounds about right for one day of work at today's rates, and you will recover the cost by not having to pay a cable bill for TV.
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Old 19-Oct-2015, 10:41 PM   #9
Mecha Archzilla
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Thanks for the reply, they said they will test and put it in the spot with best reception. I will make sure to test each connection before they leave.

I will post an update this weekend to let you know how it went.
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Old 19-Oct-2015, 11:37 PM   #10
rabbit73
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The coax shield should be grounded with a grounding block that is connected to the house electrical system ground with 10 gauge copper wire for electrical safety and to reject interference. For further compliance with the electrical code (NEC), the mast should also be grounded in a similar manner to drain any buildup of static charge, but the system will not survive a direct strike.



Satellite System Grounding
Part 2 - NEC Overview
Presented by Todd Humphrey
http://www.dbsinstall.com/diy/Grounding-2.asp

Todd Humphrey doesn't speak for the NFPA that publishes the NEC code, but he has some ideas that are helpful. The local electrical inspector has the final say if you are willing to get him involved. Some inspectors are more friendly than others; a local electrician could tell you.
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Old 29-Oct-2015, 12:56 AM   #11
Mecha Archzilla
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Ok, so update.

This is not going as well as I hoped. They came out Friday and installed the antenna on the chimney. The cable is run into the attic through a FM trap to a splitter. 3 lines go from this splitter and run down the walls to wall outlets in the upstairs bedrooms. The 4th line runs back outside the attic, down the back wall, under the house, into another splitter and back up into wall outlets in 4 rooms.

The upstairs rooms pick up all channels no problem, but the downstairs sets do not pick up 39 or 47. I need an amp, but not sure how I will install one since there is no power outlet in the attic. The cost of the install has also increased from $600 dollars quoted to $1100 after I added 2 lines of network cable and they had to do some drywall work to get lines installed upstairs (which I also have to repaint 2 walls).

Also, they worked for 10 hours on Friday and had to leave because it got dark. Came back today and finished up inside, but have to come back again to do the grounding of the antenna because he forgot the tall ladder.

Unfortunately they were not as professional as I thought they would be based on their website and reviews and such, as the install was not as neat or as seamless as I had hoped.

Anyways. . .
Any thoughts on how to boost signal downstairs, short of having an electrician install an outlet in the attic or running an extension cord 75 feet down the back of my house and to the nearest outlet?
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Old 29-Oct-2015, 10:23 AM   #12
ADTech
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There is no need to have AC power at the amp's location.

Any distribution amp (except the really cheap ones with an attached AC cord) can be powered remotely using an optional power inserter.
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Old 31-Oct-2015, 4:15 AM   #13
Mecha Archzilla
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Ok, thanks for that info. I bought the channel master 4-way and its power inserter, should be in by the end of next week.
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Old 31-Oct-2015, 7:21 PM   #14
rabbit73
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Power options for Channel Master 3414 Distribution Amp:



________________________________________________________________________



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Old 1-Nov-2015, 2:02 AM   #15
Mecha Archzilla
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Thanks for that. Cancelled the order and got the CM-3418
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Old 1-Nov-2015, 8:04 PM   #16
rabbit73
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Quote:
Cancelled the order and got the CM-3418
Why did you cancel the 3414 order?
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Old 1-Nov-2015, 8:38 PM   #17
Mecha Archzilla
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I was able to run the cable to the other room upstairs,so when I saw the picture I realized I needed another output.
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Old 1-Nov-2015, 9:21 PM   #18
ADTech
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mecha Archzilla View Post
I was able to run the cable to the other room upstairs,so when I saw the picture I realized I needed another output.
Next time, just add a splitter.....
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Old 6-Nov-2015, 6:51 PM   #19
Mecha Archzilla
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Ok, so the CM-3418 and power inserter came in today. Hooked up everything and now all channels in green on the report come in at all outlets, both up and downstairs. Upstairs sets also now receive RC 50, which is in yellow on the report. Didn't really care about that one but I'll take it.

Antenna is still not grounded, as it has been raining here pretty much every day, but am super happy with the end results.

Thank you everyone for your help!
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Old 6-Nov-2015, 8:46 PM   #20
rabbit73
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Thanks for the report; glad that we were able to help.
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