The Official AVS 'Smart Antenna' topic - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 167 Old 11-02-2008, 02:19 PM
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Thanks for the workaround tip, JHBrandt. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem to work on the DT502. I can't find a way to enter RF channels in the setup menu, and when I enter RF channels via the remote while on a virtual channel, I get an "Invalid Channel!" warning.

By the way, I started a thread in the CECB forum, seeking feedback on any experience with any of the available smart antenna boxes (as I'm looking for one that is better than the DT502, natch). If anyone has anything to add, please feel free to do so:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...8#post14987138
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post #62 of 167 Old 11-03-2008, 08:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J.Francis View Post

Peter, how would you rate your Goodmind DTA1000, both overall and in tandem with either of your smart antennas?

I gave my Goodmind DTA1000 a F for smart antenna controls. It does have all the smart antenna settings available in manual scan. So I have been going in and manually tuning each station. The process takes me very long. The manual scan has a quality meter but that is almost useless. I go though and tag all the 100% quality settings for a station and then go through the long process of setting the antenna, jumping out to look at the signal strength and then repeating until I find the strongest signal without any dropouts. Not a perfect procedure either but better then the Goodmind DTA1000 automatic setting.

Hope this helps.
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post #63 of 167 Old 11-03-2008, 09:16 AM - Thread Starter
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RCA ANT2000 Smart Antenna User's Guide says "up to 20 dB gain":

"Employs built-in low-noise amplifier and auto-gain controller for reducing
interference and adding just the right amount of signal enhancement."


I interpret this to mean it should be able to reduce overall gain when
desensitization due to signal overload is present....but until I have a
chance to verify operations in a strong signal environment, I'll remain
skeptical whether it actually goes through this extra step.

User's Guide also says ANT2000 is horizontally polarized and should be
on a FLAT surface. So if you hang it vertically on a wall (using the handy
hanging holes on the rear) it's going to scan VERTICALLY in elevation.
And, of course, any nearby metal is going to seriously affect performance.
Since higher is nearly always better, I would go for mounting in on or
somewhat BELOW the ceiling (which in apartments is rebar & concrete).

When I grabbed it by the corners and rotated, it lost the signal for the
particular channel under test with only about 20-deg of right rotation,
and up to 45-deg of left rotation, so it might have also been steering
a null towards an undesired direction.....

============================================
RCA DTA-800B1 CECB takes forever to scan, only adapts antenna during
the long rescan process and too many button pushes to find the Signal Meter.
It has a bad power supply, so I'm returning it....with extreme prejudice....

Apex DT-502 menus are similar to Tivax but apparently won't accept
a REAL channel number??? I'm not done playing with it....

=========================================
Tivax STB-T8 (with APT) is my favorite so far...it includes ability to adapt
antenna on an unrecognized channel and I really like their menus & R/C.
It displays both Signal Quality (residual bit error rate) and Signal Level (AGC).

Last week I was at my son's place (75 miles from Mt. Wilson in L.A.) finding
roughly same number of UHF channels for RCA ANT2000 vs DTA-5000
as I had found earlier using a 4-Bay with Preamp in same patio location.

Since it was way too hot to enter his attic (over 100-deg outside), I only got
about half the L.A. stations w antennas on top of his wood pergola.

Autoscan has threshhold set A LITTLE TOO HIGH to eliminate weak stations
that can pop in (and out) when you autoadapt while sitting on a selected channel.

Manually entering each channel number for L.A. area and running autoadapt
takes quite a long time....but added a few more channels to the "acceptable" list....
as well as a few that come and go over time....

I found two weak stations that came in slightly better after manually
tweaking the antenna "direction" control....but neither was reliable...

I also received channels from THREE other directions....something his
CM-4228 can't do....and in his attic I'll check for four from San Diego.
However, small Smart Antennas probably don't stand a chance against
the CM-4228.....on a ROTATOR.


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post #64 of 167 Old 11-15-2008, 11:25 AM
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Will the RCA ANT2000 work with a Dish Network HD receiver? My receiver does not have an antenna control hook up so I'm assuming it won't work. Thanks
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post #65 of 167 Old 11-15-2008, 09:38 PM - Thread Starter
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NO....OTA Receiver has to implement the EIA/CEA-909 Smart Antenna Control Interface.

Thus far only the Sylvania 6900DTE (Funai STB400) HD-STB and a
handful of NTIA Coupon Eligible Converter Boxes (CECB) have the I/F.


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post #66 of 167 Old 11-24-2008, 01:24 AM
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Are there only 2 Smart antennas in existance that plug into the CECB EIA/CEA-909 Standard Interfaces?

So far I've only found the RCA ANT2000 and the DX DTA-5000.

You would think with DTV OTA multipath problems, these things would
be very popular.
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post #67 of 167 Old 11-24-2008, 11:21 AM - Thread Starter
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I think the delay has been due to delayed development/approval of CEA-774B,
"TV Receiving Antenna Performance Presentation and Measurement",
(vote scheduled for 11/20/08). Ensures interoperability of products....
http://www.ce.org/Standards/2008-10-...thlyUpdate.pdf
Hopefully it won't need any further revisions....

GE-Jasco website still says they'll release their Smart Antenna 29Dec2008:
http://www.jascoproducts.com/hdtv/GE...al-Antenna.asp

Terk Smart Antennas still not available. They were showing some at CES2008 last Jan:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9hFrX5LyeLU

I haven't seen anything new wrt Antennas-Direct Smart Antenna prototype
I saw at NAB2008 last April...they said early 2009...
It also made an appearance at CEDIA in Sept:
http://www.tvtechnology.com/article/66526

Except for DX-5000, they all seem to be UHF-only....it isn't going to be easy
to design a GOOD Hi-VHF Smart Antenna...much less Lo-VHF....
which will be important Post-Feb2009....although VHF is "easier" wrt multipath....


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post #68 of 167 Old 11-24-2008, 01:11 PM
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I just dropped my cable connection to our lakeside condo unit which is about half way between Milwaukee and Chicago. Past rabbit ear experiments proved poor so I went to cable, but with the latest price increase, its gotten way too $$ for the use it gets. So, I'm now thinking an RCA ANT2000 with either a Tivax ATSC STB-T8 or RCA DT800B1. Solid Signal suggested an amplified ANT1500 with a Cannel Master CM-7000. Any thoughts?
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post #69 of 167 Old 11-24-2008, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

...

Terk Smart Antennas still not available. They were showing some at CES2008 last Jan:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9hFrX5LyeLU

...

Except for DX-5000, they all seem to be UHF-only....it isn't going to be easy
to design a GOOD Hi-VHF Smart Antenna...much less Lo-VHF....
which will be important Post-Feb2009....although VHF is "easier" wrt multipath....

...

I thought the ANT2000 was this Terk model. Audiovox owns both brands and so when the ANT2000 came out I thought it was switch from the brand they showed it under at CES2008.

Also, according to the manual for the RCA ANT2000 it does handle the upper VHF band. I won't be able to test that now that I gave the antenna away. Also, I don't have any digital stations in the upper VHF band right now, after the transition I will. Did you find something out during your testing with your unit?

Overall I found the much larger DX Antenna DTA5000 to be better then the RCA ANT2000. Sorry, hard to qualify it very well but I had an easier time tuning in and fewer dropouts. Signal strength varied from more or less depending on the station I was looking at.
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post #70 of 167 Old 11-24-2008, 05:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Here's the Audiovox Jan2008 press release:
http://www.audiovox.com/pressrelease...200801075.html
There is supposed to be RCA ANT2000, Terk HDSA1 (HDSo1? HDS01?) Indoor and HDSA02 for Outdoors.


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post #71 of 167 Old 12-02-2008, 02:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonMart View Post

I just dropped my cable connection to our lakeside condo unit which is about half way between Milwaukee and Chicago. Past rabbit ear experiments proved poor so I went to cable, but with the latest price increase, its gotten way too $$ for the use it gets. So, I'm now thinking an RCA ANT2000 with either a Tivax ATSC STB-T8 or RCA DT800B1. Solid Signal suggested an amplified ANT1500 with a Channel Master CM-7000. Any thoughts?

I would probably avoid the RCA DT800B1 as it doesn't have the ability to overscan in new channels. I'm assuming you're about 40-50 miles away from either location, so not too sure if an indoor antenna would do you justice...you might get lucky, though. I'm 30 miles from one market and 40 from another, and the RCA ANT2000 picks up all but 1-2 available stations from both combined.

I'm considering trying out a Winegard SharpShooter SS-3000, wondering if PeterTheGeek or holl_ands have had any experience with it? The RCA ANT2000 isn't so good a perfomer for a TV in a finished basement, and I fear the next step may be retrofitting the existing attic antenna and wiring...
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post #72 of 167 Old 12-15-2008, 07:47 AM
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Is there a list of hdtv receivers that have smart antenna I/O? I mean TV sets that one could buy from Costco or Amazon that have the connectors built in.
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post #73 of 167 Old 12-15-2008, 09:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Only CECB Converter Boxes and Sylvania 6900DTE HD-STB so far have EIA/CEA-909 I/F.

We'll probably see DTVs (et. al.) with the Smart Antenna I/F sometime next year,
now that CEA-774A, CEA-2028A and CEA-2032 have been approved:
http://www.ce.org/Standards/2008-11-...thlyUpdate.pdf


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post #74 of 167 Old 12-30-2008, 08:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

GE-Jasco website still says they'll release their Smart Antenna 29Dec2008:
http://www.jascoproducts.com/hdtv/GE...al-Antenna.asp


Jasco yanked the page. That doesn't look good.
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post #75 of 167 Old 12-31-2008, 06:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldsyd View Post

Jasco yanked the page. That doesn't look good.

I noticed that also, I am hoping that it is just delayed. Maybe they wanted to wait until the undated color code standard for indoor antennas was done. Time will tell if I am right or not.
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post #76 of 167 Old 01-04-2009, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RockerChick View Post

I just purchased a RCA DTA800 Digital TV Converter Box and when I installed it all I got was a black screen that said the signal is too weak. So I looked in the directions and it said it recommends a Smart Antenna. I was just wondering if anyone can tell me what a Smart Antenna is and where would I get one? I've tried looking online but the few sites I can find use all these technical terms that are way over my head! I have a rabbit-ear antenna, and the regular tv stations are fuzzy or don't come in at all. I do live near some mountains which I was told is why the regular tv stations don't come in well. So would a Smart Antenna even work for me? Thank you!

Have now two RCA ANT2000 Smart Antennae connected to an RCA DTA800B and and RCA DTA809 converter boxes. The ANT2000 is the best Antenna to date that I've found for an Indoor antenna that eats Multi-path interference. A little quirk is it can be physically on top of an electronic device. Had it on a stereo speaker (big Technics) and poor reception, rest it on a box raising it 4" and everything comes in perfectly. In Eagan (southern suburb of Twin Cities) I easily pick up all regular stations 16.5miles away, but on 'Full Scan can pick up Channel 41, from Big Lake, MN, ~30+ miles away! Got one at Wal-mart.com for $60, and one from Buy.com for $45 (Buy.com took a month to get one to me)
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post #77 of 167 Old 01-04-2009, 12:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonMart View Post

I just dropped my cable connection to our lakeside condo unit which is about half way between Milwaukee and Chicago. Past rabbit ear experiments proved poor so I went to cable, but with the latest price increase, its gotten way too $$ for the use it gets. So, I'm now thinking an RCA ANT2000 with either a Tivax ATSC STB-T8 or RCA DT800B1. Solid Signal suggested an amplified ANT1500 with a Cannel Master CM-7000. Any thoughts?

The Channel Master DTV box is nice, but I don't think an RCA ANT1500 nor 1550 would be best choice out there. And the RCA DTA800B1 is not as good as their latest upgrade DTA809 available in Target Stores only, not online (go figure, they have the lower quality Venturer and the notoriously fickle GE box with its worthless remote). The Radio Shack Digital Stream DTX9950 or the Best Buy Insignia NS-DXA1-APT have a little more sensitive receiver.

More critical will be antenna selection. If in Kenosha, every station requires either a Blue or Violet UHF (medium to large directional pre-amp antenna!) so a little indoor unamplified antenna like an RCA ANT1500 not going to pick up much! I am little biased to the ClearStream 4 with a nice low noise pre-amp will not make a mess of you cabin site lines like a big Yagi antenna might.
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post #78 of 167 Old 02-06-2009, 08:18 AM
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I just bought a ant2000 to use with my dta800b1 and its terrible the reception is much worse and I get more channels with my old amplified rabbit ears. I live in the sububs with stations in 3 differentb directions and the floor above me has aluminum siding. if I pickup and tilt the ant2000 something drops around inside sounds like a screw or something. The antenna looks nice.

Did I get a defective smart antenna or are these big expensive paperweights?
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post #79 of 167 Old 02-06-2009, 05:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Of course a loose screw indicates something is wrong....or is waiting to happen....

Did you ensure there is plenty of "space" between ANT2000 and nearby metal objects???
I use some small cardboard boxes to get it up & away from electronic equipment.


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post #80 of 167 Old 02-06-2009, 05:42 PM - Thread Starter
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I talked to an (anonymous) rep at CES2009 who was knowledgeable re Smart Antennas.
He claimed GE and Terk dropped plans to distribute Smart Antennas.

So it looks like DX Antenna DTA-5000, RCA ANT2000 and
Antennas Direct (any month now???).


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post #81 of 167 Old 02-07-2009, 12:06 AM
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I don't know if it's a screw or a scrap piece of plastic loose in there it sounded small and loud. Yes it not next to metal. To test that I moved it further to 4 feet from the tv and that didn't change anything. What I want to know is if my smart antenna is supposed to be better or much inferior to rabbit ears in the real world.
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post #82 of 167 Old 02-07-2009, 07:15 AM
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What is the converter box your connected to?

Both RCA's should be sent through a deep scan to calibrate the smart antenna. Other units like the Tivax models have a menu settings to calibrate the currently viewed channel, under "Smart Antenna".
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post #83 of 167 Old 02-07-2009, 07:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikp View Post

I don't know if it's a screw or a scrap piece of plastic loose in there it sounded small and loud. Yes it not next to metal. To test that I moved it further to 4 feet from the tv and that didn't change anything. What I want to know is if my smart antenna is supposed to be better or much inferior to rabbit ears in the real world.

For UHF, it's better than amplified RabbitEars/Loop antenna, and of course
no tweaking for different arrival directions since it forms a beam towards
the desired direction, as I confirmed by picking up the ANT2000 and
rotating it. Note that the OTHER flat panel antennas are omnidirectional
and hence have LESS gain than RabbitEars/Loop.

Since ANT2000 is amplified, it's no contest versus unamplified RabbitEars/Loop
or unamplified Silver Sensor (neither of which work for me).

And in earlier testing at my San Diego location (behind a hill), DTA-5000
(two-element Yagi's) was roughly equal to a UHF 4-Bay antenna with Preamp.

At my son's temporary patio location (70-miles SE from Mt Wilson in L.A.),
I saw no difference compared to DTA-5000...roughly same as earlier test with
CM-4221 & Preamp. All three picked up major UHF stations and only had
problems on the same few stations that everyone has problems
receiving (transmitter & co-channel issues)....

For VHF, we won't know until DTV takes over the Analog VHF channels
and can do some on-air tests.

The ANT2000's internal amplifier can help improve sensitivity and should be
designed to minimize SWR losses. Although the gain control can drop the
gain from 20 dB down to 0 dB, if you are "too close" to transmitter
towers, you still could have problems receiving weak stations due to
"overload" desensitization.


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post #84 of 167 Old 02-07-2009, 08:57 AM
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Quote:


The ANT2000's internal amplifier can help improve sensitivity and should be
designed to minimize SWR losses. Although the gain control can drop the
gain from 20 dB down to 0 dB, if you are "too close" to transmitter
towers, you still could have problems receiving weak stations due to
"overload" desensitization.

A smart smart-antenna should be able to detect potential overload and reduce the amplification to eliminate it.
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post #85 of 167 Old 02-08-2009, 12:05 AM - Thread Starter
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ANT2000 can only reduce it to 0 dB gain....which should be more than enough unless you
are within a few miles of the transmitters....


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post #86 of 167 Old 02-10-2009, 07:22 PM
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I have a dta800b1 all digital stations are significantly worse than the rabbit ears so I guess something is defective then.
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post #87 of 167 Old 02-11-2009, 07:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikp View Post

I have a dta800b1 all digital stations are significantly worse than the rabbit ears so I guess something is defective then.

With the lose part rattling around in the unit, it does sound like it is broken. Maybe you should try to get it exchanged.
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post #88 of 167 Old 02-11-2009, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

I talked to an (anonymous) rep at CES2009 who was knowledgeable re Smart Antennas.
He claimed GE and Terk dropped plans to distribute Smart Antennas.

I am not sure I understand his (or her) meaning. Audiovox, which is licensed to use the RCA brand, already distributes (makes?) the RCA ANT2000. Terk is a division of Audiovox. Is the point that Audiovox has decided not to compete against its own RCA-branded product by also selling under the Terk brand?
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post #89 of 167 Old 02-12-2009, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by kumo View Post

I am not sure I understand his (or her) meaning. Audiovox, which is licensed to use the RCA brand, already distributes (makes?) the RCA ANT2000. Terk is a division of Audiovox. Is the point that Audiovox has decided not to compete against its own RCA-branded product by also selling under the Terk brand?

There were a few smart antenna's announced by Audiovox, a total of three. I believe the unit Audiovox showed at CES 2008 that own the innovation award was slated to be a Terk. But I think they branded it as RCA after the sale went through of RCA from Thomson. I would take holl_ands quote as saying there will be no more smart antennas out from Audiovox (RCA and Terk) or Jasco (GE consumer electronics).
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post #90 of 167 Old 02-12-2009, 07:44 PM - Thread Starter
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I wouldn't interpret my quote to EXCLUDE RCA from releasing additional Smart Antennas...maybe...


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