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Old 2-Apr-2010, 6:55 AM   #1
mdoverstreet
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Leslie, AR

Hey ya'll! Long time user, 1st time poster. I have an uncle who lives in Leslie, AR. He's got an antenna that's seen better days. So, I'd like to know the best antenna for him. He don't have a whole lot of money, so I'm wanting to help him out. I was wanting to find a tower and put two AntennaCraft HBU55's on it. What do ya'll think? Also, what kind of amplifier should I use, if needed? Before the digital transsition, he could get some Little Rock, AR channels, and that was with the wore out antenna. Now he can't. Using TV Fool, it said that I'd have to go up over 140 ft before ever thinking about getting anything from Little Rock. His best hope is Springfield, MO. TV Fool said there was also a chance of getting some channels from Ft. Smith/Fayetteville and Jonesboro. Might be a stupid question, but how come he would have a much better chance of getting Springfield, MO when it is further away than Little Rock, AR? http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...b7c8552e44b4a4 35.848687,-92.633409 Thanks a lot!

Last edited by mdoverstreet; 2-Apr-2010 at 7:14 AM. Reason: Edited to add corrdinates and correct URL
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Old 2-Apr-2010, 8:55 AM   #2
mtownsend
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BTW, the tvfool link you posted said is was resolved for city-level only. Here's a link to an analysis for the exact coordinates you gave at 40 feet high: http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...b7c8ea3f29b1bd

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdoverstreet View Post
how come he would have a much better chance of getting Springfield, MO when it is further away than Little Rock, AR?
It's because your uncle's house is on the "back" side of a mountain facing the Little Rock transmitters. Here is a link showing the terrain profile between KARK (Little Rock) and your uncle's place. The transmitter is on the left, and your uncle's place is on the right, the distance is 73.1 miles. Note the hill just before your uncle's place that is causing the signal to pass way over his head...

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...dALLTV%26n%3d5


Going the other way, here's a profile view for KOZK (Springfield). In this case, you uncle is on the side of the hill facing Springfield, so he's got a better shot at it even though the distance is 93.1 miles...

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...ALLTV%26n%3d14




Quote:
I was wanting to find a tower and put two AntennaCraft HBU55's on it. What do ya'll think?
If you're talking about ganging them together (facing exactly the same direction), then this *can* work, but you'll probably have a hard time optimizing the spacing between them to get maximum gain out of both the UHF and VHF bands. You can optimize for one band, but you'll have a hard time getting good results out of both bands simultaneously.

If you're talking about having two antenna point in different directions, then this won't work. Connecting antennas pointed in different directions will surely cause a reduction in gain.

If you were thinking of using an A-B switch, then that will work.

When ganging antennas, you're better off using single-band identical antennas pointed in the same direction. To do this for VHF and UHF bands, this means a pair of antennas for each band.



You may want to try just a signal combo antenna first. An HBU-55, HD7698P, or HD8200U might be enough by itself (if used in conjunction with a good pre-amp). You will probably also want an antenna rotator to optimize reception on each of the channel clusters.



I'm not sure how high of a tower you were thinking about, but it might not be worth it to go crazy on height. By playing around with the interactive tvfool maps, it doesn't look like height really pays off until you reach at least 70 feet or more above ground level. If you're not prepared to go that high, then you're probably better off with a more modest setup that will be more resilient when it comes to wind and stormy weather.



Quote:
Also, what kind of amplifier should I use, if needed?
Yes, a pre-amp is highly recommended. To preserve as much signal integrity as possible coming out of the antenna(s), you'll want to find a pre-amp with as low of a Noise Figure as you can (below 3 dB is pretty good). The Antennacraft 10G202, Winegard 8700, and Channel Master 7777 are decent choices.



Quote:
Before the digital transsition, he could get some Little Rock, AR channels, and that was with the wore out antenna. Now he can't.
What used to be a slightly snowy or ghosted analog picture won't cut it for digital. Digital TV needs a pretty clean signal to be decoded, but once you get above that threshold, you get an awesome picture.
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Old 2-Apr-2010, 11:07 AM   #3
mdoverstreet
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Hey, thanks for the quick reply!

He used to get KARK surprisingly very clear and that was with the old, poor-condition antenna. Then the ice storm of a couple years ago really took it's toll on the antenna. It's about 20 years old or better. He can get KOLR somewhat and has to turn the antenna a little bit to get KYTV. I guess a new antenna would help a whole lot. I know he's getting tired of PBS out of Mtn. View, AR. A little PBS goes a long way! LOL!

I was wanting an A-B switch for the antennas. Obviously, one will be pointed toward Springfield, but where should the other one be pointed? I was thinking Fayetteville or Jonesboro. I guess pointing toward Little Rock would be a lost cause. Also, would the HD1850 be a better choice than the HBU55 or would it be about the same?

As far as the amp goes, I've got a Winegard AP-8275. Would that one be any good for my uncle? Of those that you mentioned, which would you most likely use?

A cable company here was going to give me a 30 ft tower that they weren't going to use anymore because they were going to tie in a smaller town with a bigger one, but I haven't heard anymore about it. Guess I should ask.

How does the very small, crappy cable company in Marshall, 8 miles north of Leslie receive Little Rock? Do they use a really tall tower or what? They receive 4, 7, 11, 16 and 38. I've often wondered that since I was little. Sometimes they switch Fox 16 for Fox 28 in Springfield. Guess they can't make up their mind. It's been on 16 for a while now though.

Seeing as a lot of people in that part of the Ozarks can't get Little Rock, why don't the stations have repeaters up there? Or would that help? Haven't I read about repeaters, or is that something I just dreamed of? Do they not want to deal with them so they "gave" the people up there to the Springfield markets?

Also, I have my own troubles. I'm in Maumelle, just outside of Little Rock. I've got a ChannelMaster 4221 HD pointed at Shinall Mountain (Where all the towers are). All channels come in, but some of the time 11 drops out and comes back just as quick, 20 freezes a lot, 25 is the same way, 27 might as well forget about, 38 freezes quite a bit and 42 most of the time is very strong. Other times its about as poor a signal as one can get. Channels 2, 4, 7, 16 and 36 are good strong signals. I tried an amp but couldn't tell any difference. Should I be looking at a different antenna? Just out of curiousity, how would a HBU55 work here? As far as analog goes, there is one channel that I know of. It's channel 9 and it's a terrible signal. What should I do?
Here's my information. http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...b7c861a686e367

Thanks again for the answers! I'm sure I'll have more questions. Until then, I'll just sit back and read and study the other posts.

Last edited by mdoverstreet; 2-Apr-2010 at 11:34 AM. Reason: Added URL
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Old 10-Apr-2010, 12:04 AM   #4
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I guess I was forgotten about. LOL!!
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Old 10-Apr-2010, 5:10 AM   #5
mtownsend
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdoverstreet View Post
I was wanting an A-B switch for the antennas. Obviously, one will be pointed toward Springfield, but where should the other one be pointed? I was thinking Fayetteville or Jonesboro.
I'm wondering if you could pick up both Springfield and Harrison translators with one antenna (you won't be able to get Fayetteville stations). A second antenna could be pointed at Jonesboro, but those channels are really weak and you might not get reliable reception on them.

I think your best hope is Springfield plus the translators out of Harrison and Branson. That should cover a pretty good selection of programming.



Quote:
I guess pointing toward Little Rock would be a lost cause.
Yes, the hill immediately to the south of your uncle's place makes it impossible unless you can somehow get the antenna up over 300 feet.



Quote:
Also, would the HD1850 be a better choice than the HBU55 or would it be about the same?
I would expect them to be about the same.



Quote:
As far as the amp goes, I've got a Winegard AP-8275. Would that one be any good for my uncle?
Yes, that is a good amp. If I had my choice, I would go with the amp that has the lowest Noise Figure spec. Most of the offerings from Winegard and Channel Master will do just fine.



Quote:
How does the very small, crappy cable company in Marshall, 8 miles north of Leslie receive Little Rock? Do they use a really tall tower or what? They receive 4, 7, 11, 16 and 38. I've often wondered that since I was little.
They probably have the advantage of picking a good spot to install their tower. If they get get it on top of a hill in a spot not blocked by too many mountains, they might have a much easier time getting Little Rock.

If your uncle was about half a mile to the east of where he is now, he might be able to pick up Little Rock too. The hill to his south would no longer be in the way. As they say in real estate, it's all about location, location, location.



Quote:
Seeing as a lot of people in that part of the Ozarks can't get Little Rock, why don't the stations have repeaters up there? Or would that help? Haven't I read about repeaters, or is that something I just dreamed of? Do they not want to deal with them so they "gave" the people up there to the Springfield markets?
Somebody has to build and maintain these, so it's a business decision. It all depends on whether the hassle of running a translator or repeater is justified by the increased audience and advertising dollars they can charge.

There are also situations where communities get together and run their own local translator/repeater. Some small towns and geographically isolated communities have gotten enough interest together to run their own facilities. This is more likely to happen in places where the cable companies or satellite companies have not been able to reach.



Quote:
Also, I have my own troubles. I'm in Maumelle, just outside of Little Rock. I've got a ChannelMaster 4221 HD pointed at Shinall Mountain (Where all the towers are). All channels come in, but some of the time 11 drops out and comes back just as quick, 20 freezes a lot, 25 is the same way, 27 might as well forget about, 38 freezes quite a bit and 42 most of the time is very strong. Other times its about as poor a signal as one can get.
Channel 11 is spotty because the 4221 is a UHF-only antenna, and channel 11.1 is broadcast on channel 12.

Channels 25, 27, and 38 are coming from a different direction than most of your other channels, so part of the problem may be that your antenna is not aimed in their direction.

I hope you do not have any kind of amp in the chain because these channels are too strong for most amps to handle. You should be better off without one. I wonder if your problems on channels 20 and 42 are caused by any kind of signal overload on an amp or the front-end of your receiver.



Quote:
Should I be looking at a different antenna? Just out of curiousity, how would a HBU55 work here?
The only thing I would consider is whether or not you want a high VHF capable antenna. The signals may be so close and so strong that they will get through your antenna no matter what you have, but since you are using a 4221 now, that would be my main consideration.

The HBU-55 is a very large antenna with high gain for fringe reception. You don't need such a large antenna since you are so close to the stations. A much smaller sibling like the HBU-33 should be more than good enough.



Quote:
As far as analog goes, there is one channel that I know of. It's channel 9 and it's a terrible signal. What should I do?
Since it's a VHF channel, your 4221 is doing a terrible job of picking it up. If you do get a VHF capable antenna, this station should improve quite a bit.

If this isn't a critical channel for you, I wouldn't worry about it too much. These lingering analog translators and repeaters will most likely go off the air sometime in the next year. Some of them will (or already do) have equivalent digital replacements. For those companies that decide not to invest in the next round of digital equipment upgrades may end up going off the air forever. Nationally, the majority of these stations are being converted, but there are also some that are not going to make the transition.
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Old 11-Apr-2010, 12:53 AM   #6
mdoverstreet
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Thanks for the reply!

There is also a small station in Mtn. Home which seemed interesting that I've watched when visiting people in Salem, AR which is not too far to the east of Mtn. Home. Would he be able to receive that one?

Three-hundred feet...LOL!! He can just deal with Springfield.

I was just playing around with the interactive maps and the "what-if" antenna thing for my uncle's place, and it seems like he would get a few more channels if we place his antenna a foot above the ground rather than going above the roof line, which would be roughly 15 feet or so. Why is that?

I had an amp on mine, but after reading your post, I disconnected it. I have two TVs. The second TV has a very hard time picking up anything, so that's mainly why I had an amp. It's fed from the same antenna. I've got the spliter near the living room TV. The cable running to the second TV is RG-59. I ran that many years ago when C-band satellite was still all analog. Should that be upgraded to RG-6? I've also got an older antenna on the same mast as the new one. Is it running some sort of interference? The older one looks like a HBU-33 but maybe a little smaller if any. I know it's over 20 yrs old. It couldn't have been all that expensive because dad wouldn't have given that much money for one. LOL! I can't remember where he got it. I guess I got tricked into buying a new one. The salesperson was slick and me not knowing much at that time really helped her sale! The older antenna had the flat ribbon type cable. Could that have been replaced with RG-6 instead? If so, should I do that and take down the new one? If so, could I "split the difference" and point the antenna somewhere between Shinall Mountain and the other channels in the other direction? If I go any higher, could I have an A-B switch, get another antenna, point it in some other direction and get anything? There's a station in Searcy, AR I'd like to try for.

Without an amp:

Channel 20 is mostly just one bar on the signal meter. Channel 2 even being in another direction has most of the time 3 bars. Channels 4, 7, 16 and 36 are at full strength a great majority the time. Channel 42 is full strenght a good part of the time. Channel 25 and 38 is hit and miss. Like you said, and a tech guy at a cable company told me, channel 11 is VHF. It comes in a good part of the time with no glitches. Guess it's because I'm so close to it.
Other times I get so mad at it. LOL

Again, thanks for the replies!
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Old 13-Apr-2010, 12:10 PM   #7
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Forgot to add something. Usually it's on Channel 42 where it happens a bit. The antenna is about 15 ft up, and the road in front of the house is about 75 ft away. When anyone drives by (not all the time), the picture freezes until they go by. It's a side street, so some people drive pretty slow. When it freezes, I look out the window and more times than not, there's someone driving by.
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Old 14-Apr-2010, 2:36 AM   #8
mdoverstreet
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Forgot to add that there are two pine trees, one on one side of the driveway and the other on the other side. The antenna is pointed right between them, aimed at Shinall Mountain. Could the trees be running interference? Thanks!


Also, I've noticed that one of the forum members (sorry, can't recall his name) tell people that they could try tilting the antenna to receive signals in mountainous terrain. Is that something that I could try for my uncle for any reason?
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Old 14-Apr-2010, 8:15 AM   #9
mtownsend
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdoverstreet View Post
There is also a small station in Mtn. Home which seemed interesting that I've watched when visiting people in Salem, AR which is not too far to the east of Mtn. Home. Would he be able to receive that one?
I think the station you're talking about is K07XL. Power-wise, this station is strong enough to be received if you have the antenna pointed at it. However, if you plan on having the antenna pointed to the north-west (between Springfield and Harrison), then this station might be a little too far to the side to be picked up by the same antenna without moving it. There's a chance it might work, but the only way to find out is to try it.



Quote:
I was just playing around with the interactive maps and the "what-if" antenna thing for my uncle's place, and it seems like he would get a few more channels if we place his antenna a foot above the ground rather than going above the roof line, which would be roughly 15 feet or so. Why is that?
That's because some RF energy likes to propagate along the "skin" of the Earth. The amount of extra power you get this way is usually small and the benefits are usually outweighed by the added ground-level clutter (e.g., shrubs, trees, cars, houses, etc.) that gets in the way when you're that low. The propagation models don't account for these kinds of localized clutter, so actual signal strength gains will depend on your surrounding environment.

In most situations, I'd recommend just going on the roof. There are less variables that way (there's not much stuff passing in front of the antenna, and you're above most of the problematic clutter). Having said that, I've also known people that did see an improvement by mounting their antenna closer to the ground. Each situation is unique. You'll have to consider how much stuff lies between you and the transmitters.



Quote:
I've got the spliter near the living room TV. The cable running to the second TV is RG-59. I ran that many years ago when C-band satellite was still all analog. Should that be upgraded to RG-6?
How long is the RG59 cable? RG6 will probably lose about 7 dB of signal for every 100 feet of cable. RG59 will lose more like 11 dB per 100 feet. The longer your cable run, the more of a difference the cable quality will make. I do recommend upgrading the cable if you can.



Quote:
I've also got an older antenna on the same mast as the new one. Is it running some sort of interference? The older one looks like a HBU-33 but maybe a little smaller if any.
If the antennas are very close to each other, then yes, each antenna will have an effect on the antenna pattern and gain of the other antenna. The amount of influence varies with distance. It's best to keep at least about 4-5 feet of space between the antennas (or remove any unused antennas).



Quote:
The older antenna had the flat ribbon type cable. Could that have been replaced with RG-6 instead?
The two-wire flat cable is also known as twin-lead, and yes, you can connect a twin-lead system to a coax system by using a transforming balun. You've probably seen these before. They are usually small cheap devices with a "pigtail" connector on one side and an "F-type" connector on the other side (like this). In most cases, the balun can be attached directly to the screw terminals on the antenna itself.

Most new antennas assume that you want to run RG6 cabling, so they usually come with a balun or have one built-in to a circuit attached to the antenna.

I'd check the condition of the old antenna. Time, weather, and UV will take their toll on antennas. If the old antenna is falling apart, then it may be a good time to replace it anyway. If the antenna is physically OK, then it's entirely up to you. The laws of physics are still the same as they've always been, so an antenna that worked 20 years ago should still work today as long as it's not broken.



Quote:
could I "split the difference" and point the antenna somewhere between Shinall Mountain and the other channels in the other direction?
The beam width of the 4221 is roughly 60 degrees. The channels seem to be spread too far apart to have all of them in the sweet spot of the antenna at the same time. However, you might be able to focus the antenna more on the channels to the south. Your local stations are only about 8 miles away and very strong, so they might be able to get through your antenna even if you don't have it pointed at them. It will take some trial and error to see if this will work.



Quote:
If I go any higher, could I have an A-B switch, get another antenna, point it in some other direction and get anything? There's a station in Searcy, AR I'd like to try for.
Yes, it's more work and expense, but it's certainly possible. How much is that additional channel worth to you?

As an alternative, you could just use one antenna on a rotator for a similar effect.



Quote:
Originally Posted by mdoverstreet View Post
Forgot to add something. Usually it's on Channel 42 where it happens a bit. The antenna is about 15 ft up, and the road in front of the house is about 75 ft away. When anyone drives by (not all the time), the picture freezes until they go by. It's a side street, so some people drive pretty slow. When it freezes, I look out the window and more times than not, there's someone driving by.
Sounds like an unlucky signal reflection that just happens to cause enough multipath to make the channel break-up.

If you try aiming your antenna in a different direction (to focus more on the south-eastern channels as suggested above), this behavior might change. Don't know if it will be better or worse until you try it, but it's worth a shot.



Quote:
Originally Posted by mdoverstreet View Post
Forgot to add that there are two pine trees, one on one side of the driveway and the other on the other side. The antenna is pointed right between them, aimed at Shinall Mountain. Could the trees be running interference?
If the trees are inside the ~60 degree beam width of the antenna, then it is possible for them to affect the signal being seen by your antenna. If the trees are pretty far off to the side (beyond the 60 degree window), then chances are that their influence will not be that strong.



Quote:
Also, I've noticed that one of the forum members (sorry, can't recall his name) tell people that they could try tilting the antenna to receive signals in mountainous terrain. Is that something that I could try for my uncle for any reason?
The goal of tilting the antenna upward is to move the center of the antenna's beam up to where the signal is coming from (like the top ridge of a mountain range). However, I don't think this will help in your uncle's case. That's because the mountain that is blocking the Little Rock stations is too high above him. Even if he pointed an antenna right at the upper edge of that mountain, there's too little signal to be had. TV signals do diffract (bend) over mountain tops, but they can only bend so far. Your uncle's location is simply too "deep" in the shadow of that mountain for it to work.



Good luck!
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Old 14-Apr-2010, 11:11 AM   #10
mdoverstreet
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Wow! So much information. Thanks for all your input!

I'll try to get a pic of my older antenna. Looks like it's in the same shape as when it was new. Will also get a pic of the trees.

The RG-59 is about 25 ft or so to the second TV. Is TV coax the same as CB coax as in it shouldn't be coiled? I know CB coax shouldn't be coiled up because it will cause signal loss. If there is any extra, run it back and forth instead of coiling. Got that from a CB radio repair guy friend that I've known for many years. The coax from the new antenna is RG-6 and it's about 50 ft I believe. It's also coiled.

This may sound like a stupid question seeing as I've been asking all the other types of questions, but is the antenna supposed to be pointed with the "V" shape open toward the towers or in the opposite way? I suppose the open "V" end would be something of a focal point for the signals?

I would like to get rotators for both my uncle and I, but how difficult are they to install and use? I like to experiment with technology, but my uncle is, well, let's say, technologically challenged. He's just now understanding how to use the remote with the digital converter box he's got. LOL! As you could see from the map of his place that you saw, he's way out in BFE and he's definately not up with the times. No indoor bathroom and he takes a bath in a waterfall not too far from the house. He has two lightbulbs in the house to see and a potbelly stove for heat. Well, what happens when it gets really hot in the summer? He stays outside. He usually has a big vegetable garden. He walks up on bears, coyotes and other Ozark Mountain creatures pretty regular. Won't carry a gun. I think he's crazy for not doing so. But, oh well.

Speaking of converter boxes, he got a RCA box that has the analog pass-through. I've heard good and bad about those boxes. More bad than good though. What do you think? I have got one that was bought at a Radio Shack. Can't think of the brand name of it though. Was thinking about giving him that one.

When I was talking about "splitting the difference" between the Shinall towers and the southeastern channels, I was talking about using the older antenna after taking down the new one.

When I posted the message yesterday about the picture freezing when people drive by, the school bus stopped in front of the house, and the picture didn't resume until the bus went on. LOL! I will try turning the antenna a bit like you suggested.

Thanks a lot!!

Last edited by mdoverstreet; 14-Apr-2010 at 11:15 AM.
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Old 14-Apr-2010, 8:18 PM   #11
mtownsend
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdoverstreet View Post
Is TV coax the same as CB coax as in it shouldn't be coiled? I know CB coax shouldn't be coiled up because it will cause signal loss. If there is any extra, run it back and forth instead of coiling.
Yes, that is correct. Coiling cable like that can act as a kind of signal choke. It's good to have a little bit of cable slack to work with, but if you have excessive amounts of extra cable, it's best to cut the cable to a more appropriate length and put a new connector on the end (assuming you have the tools to do this).



Quote:
is the antenna supposed to be pointed with the "V" shape open toward the towers or in the opposite way? I suppose the open "V" end would be something of a focal point for the signals?
The open end (mouth) of the "V" should be pointed toward the transmitters.



Quote:
I would like to get rotators for both my uncle and I, but how difficult are they to install and use?
If you're a generally handy person, then it's probably not that hard to do. It is definitely more work than installing an antenna by itself because you need to run an extra cable (for power and control) and set up two sections of mast (one piece to hold the rotator, and the other that goes on top of the rotator to hold the antenna). If the mast is going to be tall, then you'll probably also need to add guy wires and a collar to reduce stress on the motor. However, the overall skills required are not that different than installing just an antenna. Just make sure you give yourself time (and perhaps the help of a friend) to plan the installation and put it all together.



Quote:
Speaking of converter boxes, he got a RCA box that has the analog pass-through. I've heard good and bad about those boxes. More bad than good though. What do you think? I have got one that was bought at a Radio Shack. Can't think of the brand name of it though. Was thinking about giving him that one.
I would say the most significant difference between converter boxes for the average consumer is how well the user interface works for them (on-screen menus and remote control functions).

There are some technical differences between the boxes like how well they deal with multipath, their Noise Figure specs, and picture/sound handling details, but all of these $40 coupon type boxes are, by definition, limited to standard definition picture quality and stereo sound. You can't do 1080 resolution 5.1 channel home theater audio with these boxes, so I would stress usability and personal preference over output quality.

I would try each of the boxes you have and get a personal feel for how you like the remote control layout and commonly used controls. In the end, you should probably just go with the one that is the easiest to use for your uncle.

If you have some marginal channels, you might find that one box does a better job of holding on to channels than the other. If that is the case, then this might be a more important factor than the user interface.
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Old 15-Apr-2010, 12:48 AM   #12
mdoverstreet
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Thanks a lot for all the help! Maybe I have enough sense to tackle a rotator job.

Here's a look at my antennas. This is looking straight up. There's not more than, say, 4 or 5" between the new one on bottom and the older on on top.

http://i920.photobucket.com/albums/a...antennapic.jpg

Here's a look at the trees that are in the way. Both antennas are pointed right through the middle of the trees.

http://i920.photobucket.com/albums/a...treesinway.jpg

I will get both those coax cables cut way back. You think it'll help the situation with the 2nd TV (apparently not getting enough signal)?

I have the "V" pointed toward the towers, but thought I'd make sure anyway.



Again, thanks!

Last edited by mdoverstreet; 15-Apr-2010 at 7:45 AM.
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Old 4-Dec-2010, 3:07 AM   #13
mdoverstreet
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Wow, been a long time since I've posted anything on here.

I think I want to try tilting my antenna. But, how much? Nearly everyone of my channels glitch. Should I tilt at a 45º, 60º, or maybe 75º? I have my antenna on a 2 1/2" OD x 10' or so pipe. Could the pipe be running any sort of interference? I have a home base CB antenna about 20' long or so, but it's behind the tv antenna by several feet. Could that have any sort of effect? It hasn't been connected to my CB for several months thanks to one of my dogs chewing my coax in two. Oh well, should have put the coax in a better spot.

I have the antenna connected to two TVs as previously mentioned. My bedroom TV, with a DigitalStream converter box, does a lot better job of pulling in channels than the living room TV, which is a DTV. Do the converter boxes have better tuners in them? I tried an amp on the living room TV and no difference. I have one on the bedroom TV and have no problems at all, but if I unplug the amp, all channels are gone. I tried it one night just to see. With the converter box, I can get KEMV pretty stable, but can't get it on the DTV, not that I want to watch PBS or anything. Just thought it was cool to receive a channel from that far away.

I know that because of mountains, people in some parts of north AR can't receive Little Rock. If the transmitters were in the mountains of north AR instead of being in Little Rock, could I receive the channels in Little Rock? Would they be strong? Just curious.

Thanks a lot!
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Old 4-Dec-2010, 7:35 AM   #14
GroundUrMast
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Try tilting the antenna so that it points at the edge of the obstructing terrain, then experiment above and below that angle in increments of a few degrees. 45° is extreme and I can think of very few applications were a high angle like that would be useful. 15° to 20° would be the common max angle for DXing.

The HD (1080i) capable tuner and decoder has a lot more work to do than a 480i set top box... my experience is similar to yours. Reliable, full HD quality reception requires a clean signal, more so than the lower resolution. http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=610
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If the well is dry and you don't see rain on the horizon, you'll need to dig the hole deeper. (If the antenna can't get the job done, an amp won't fix it.)

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Old 18-Dec-2010, 3:01 AM   #15
mdoverstreet
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Ok, I'm about to finally get my uncle hooked up with a new antenna. I'm going to go with the HBU55. I got a 10ft, 2" OD galvanized pole. Will that be enough for now? Hopefully, in the future, I will be able to have something taller. I'm going to be using my Winegard 8275 on his setup. Thinking about slightly tilting the antenna. The cable run shouldn't be more than 15 ft, including the drip loop. Will be using RG-6. I will be using the DigitalStream and the RCA converter boxes to see which one performs better. What do ya'll think his chances of reliable reception will be? Here's his location again. http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...da32976d46a898

Thanks for all the help! It's been a long time coming. He's probably given up on me. LOL!


I guess I've got multipath out the ying-yang at my place! A low-flying military plane few over and my picture broke up until it finally got out of the way. Is there anything I can do to fix this?

Also, another uncle living on the same property as the uncle above has asked why he can't get anything. I looked at his TVFool report, and I think there's no hope for him. What do ya'll think? http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...da3275157cd9e5

Last edited by mdoverstreet; 18-Dec-2010 at 3:15 AM.
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Old 18-Dec-2010, 6:22 AM   #16
John Candle
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Tv Antennas and Reception

With no rotator , point the antenna at 348 magnetic compass. One uncle has farely good reception the other not so good. More antenna height will likely improve the not so good one.

Last edited by John Candle; 18-Dec-2010 at 6:31 AM.
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Old 15-Jan-2011, 4:45 AM   #17
mdoverstreet
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Finally did it. Finally got my uncle's antenna up. http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...3cf42d3cb85a65
He can get 3, 10 and 19 fairly well - mid 50s or so. Channel 27 is showing it's ass. That one is in the low to mid 30s. Channel 26 is booming. It's being received in the high 80s. Got analog channel 8. I think it was called TKO. It's actually somewhat clear. Can't get 7, 21, 23 or 31. Guess it'll take some playing around with the antenna to see what can be had, right? Ok, I know it's going to be a stupid question, but I'm going to ask it anyway. How do I know if the amp is working? Would unplugging the power be a way of finding out? He has the Winegard AP 8275. The shortest coax I had to use between the antenna and the preamp was 6 ft. Is that too long? Is that going to effect anything? The coax going from the preamp to the amp is 12 ft. Should I get a better preamp/amp? Is there a better one? He seems to be rather happy that he has something else to watch other than PBS. LOL!! I just want him to be able to get everything that's available to him.

Thanks ya'll for all the help!
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Old 15-Jan-2011, 7:56 AM   #18
John Candle
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Tv Antennas and Reception

The cable lengths are Ok. If you decide to install a rotor to direct the antenna at the Tv stations to get the strongest signal the extra length from the antenna to the preamp will come in handy. Read and understand this about Real digital Tv channels and Virtual digital Tv channels http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=695 . The channels KSFX FOX 28 and up are the channels to receive , KOZK PBS 23 and below are to weak to receive and are not worth going after. . To improve the signal strength of KSFX and the channels above that go to the >>Start MAPS<< part of tvfool and select current plus pending Tv channels. Raise the antenna height and see if can get KSFX and the channels above KSFX -- NM(dB) signal strength numbers above +10 NM (dB) and this will give you the channels you are missing , K07XL , KSFX FOX 28 , KWBM MyNetwork 31. Raising the antenna height first is the most important. http://www.3starinc.com/rohn_telescopic_masts.html . This Uncle is showing the antenna height at 15 feet is the antenna still at 15 feet?

Last edited by John Candle; 16-Jan-2011 at 2:39 AM.
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Old 15-Jan-2011, 8:18 PM   #19
John Candle
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Tv Antennas and Reception

To find out if the amp is working run a coax from the antenna to the Tv , by passing every thing. This way reception can be compared with and with out the amp. . What antenna and amp did you use with this uncle?

Last edited by John Candle; 16-Jan-2011 at 2:42 AM.
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Old 19-Jan-2011, 1:34 AM   #20
mdoverstreet
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It's still at roughly 15 ft. I used a HBU 55 and a Winegard AP 8275.
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