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Old 10-Aug-2011, 5:36 AM   #1
qtoffer
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Join Date: Aug 2011
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VHF reception help in Queens, NY

Hi. I recently upgraded to a HDTV and don't have cable. Using online sources including TVfool, I constructed a coat hanger DB4 UHF antenna with a galvanized mesh reflector. The antenna is awesome! I'm able to get crisp, clear reception of all the major network channels broadcasting over UHF, plus a few others.

I cannot get any of the VHF channels that I would like to - 7, 11, and 13. I've tried inexpensive store-bought rabbit ears both inside and outside with no success.

I rent an apartment on the second floor of a six story pre-war brick building. The walls have plaster attached to metal mesh, so indoor antennas simply don't work at all. There are 6 story buildings all around me. I'm not allowed to mount an antenna on the roof, so when I watch TV, I stick my DIY DB4 out the window facing West-Northwest and clamp it to the windowsill. When I'm done, I pull it back inside.

Below is the link to my TV signal analysis.
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...3e47e50f50f61f

Is there any VHF-only antenna (DIY or store-bought) that you could suggest to capture the 174 - 216MHz range. Keep in mind that I have to stick it out my window and bring it back inside so as not to incur the wrath of my landlord.

I guess I'm lucky to get any reception at all given my location and surroundings, but if I could also get ABC, CW, and PBS, you would make my day!

Thanks!
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Old 10-Aug-2011, 7:00 AM   #2
John Candle
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Tv Antennas and Reception

Does your apt. have a balcony that is in the direction of west north west?? Or can see in the direction of west north west from the balcony. Are there any small satellite dishes on the out side of the building?? There is a Tv antenna that looks like a small dish , AntennaCraft HDX1000 , http://www.antennacraft.net/Manuals/HDX1000_manual.pdf . Will also need a variable attenuator to 'dial down' the signal strength , AntennasDirect model # 1296F . Strong signal reflections - multipath - over load the digital tuner. The variable attenuator reduces the strength of the signal so the digital tuner can process the signal.

Last edited by John Candle; 10-Aug-2011 at 3:51 PM.
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Old 10-Aug-2011, 3:14 PM   #3
Dave Loudin
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Location: King George, VA
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qtoffer, what size are the bowtie elements? If you picked up on a certain design made popular by a youtube video, then you have elements that are too small for best performance. Take a look here for recommendations and plans that should provide your best shot at the VHF signals you are looking for in the "DB4" style. Other ideas, like a dipole antenna cut for 11, will be kind of large to deal with and would perform the same as the designs I'm pointing you to.

While you are at that site, read through the FAQ, noting especially the bit about construction. If you've attached your elements directly to wood, then the design is further compromised. Good luck!

Last edited by Dave Loudin; 10-Aug-2011 at 3:29 PM.
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Old 10-Aug-2011, 4:02 PM   #4
John Candle
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Tv Antennas and Reception

Or a different antenna , I recommend a Winegard FV HD30 antenna with a 1296F variable attenuator and a radio shack 15-024 FM trap.
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Old 10-Aug-2011, 7:25 PM   #5
ADTech
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Even with an appropriate antenna, I've reached the conclusion that most folks are like this for indoors VHF, especially in urban areas:

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Old 11-Aug-2011, 4:06 PM   #6
Tower Guy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qtoffer View Post
Is there any VHF-only antenna (DIY or store-bought) that you could suggest to capture the 174 - 216MHz range.

Thanks!
Antennacraft Y5-7-13
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