HD Antenna Cutting in and Out - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 06:01 AM - Thread Starter
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I installed an HD antenna in my attic, and installed an amplifier as well. It worked well for a while, but now seems to cut in and out a lot. Not consistently though. Right now as I write this post no channels are cutting in and out When it does go out, the screen will go blank and I will get a small white box saying "weak signal". My wife keeps saying, "you need to get up there and see if something is loose". I, being the intrinsically lazy person that I am and not wanting to go back in the attic, keep thinking that this could not be it - that if something is loose it simply is not going to get any reception. Any ideas? Is there anything I can do to improve performance? Could I put on a second amplifier? Would it be possible to put in a second indoor antenna?
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post #2 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 08:36 AM
 
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Tvfool report please. Can't help you without info.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29

Also no the 2nd amplifier question. The first amplifier may be part of the problem. Don't know until you post the TVfool report.

Not to sound to technical but there isn't any such thing as an HD antenna. It's a TV antenna. A 40 year old TV antenna will work on a newer HDTV.
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post #3 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 10:06 AM
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A "High Definition" antenna is axctually a highly directional standard antenna and is often needed for digital TV signals since they are very subject multipath interference.
It is therefore important that your HD antenna is pointed directly at the broadcast tower and is not being used to process signals from different directions.
Also digital signal tuners will not process a signal if it is either too weak or if it is too strong.
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post #4 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 10:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford View Post

A "High Definition" antenna is axctually a highly directional standard antenna and is often needed for digital TV signals since they are very subject multipath interference.

I would suggest you read up on antennas and you will find that a "High Definition antenna" is nothing more than a marketing slogan. An antenna is an antenna, is an antenna, is an antenna. They could care less what the transmission mode is as long as the antenna is resonate on the frequency in question.

Depending on location of the transmit and receive antennas, height above ground of both, and power of transmitting antennas, omni antennas can work very satisfactorily for "High Definition TV" . Sounds like the OP could have multipath caused by leaves on the trees or some object that is now in the path that wasn't there before. It could also be knife edge reflection or refraction due to the change of the atmosphere from winter to summer. One size does not fit all. It will take a little investigation to see what the issue is but I would bet if the OP has a directional antenna in his attic, he just needs to reposition very slightly to regain the signals. It happens all the time.

All opinions expressed (unless otherwise noted) are the posters and NOT the posters employers. The poster in NO WAY is/will speak for his employers.
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post #5 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 11:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford View Post

A "High Definition" antenna is axctually a highly directional standard antenna and is often needed for digital TV signals since they are very subject multipath interference.

I think they are growning something a little better than oranges in Orange County. biggrin.gif
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post #6 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 11:35 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Ratman View Post

I think they are growning something a little better than oranges in Orange County. biggrin.gif

He probably also thinks the gold plating on his $200 HDMI cable from Best Buy makes the 1's and 0's look better on his TV too.
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post #7 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 12:37 PM
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Wow, from spotty tv reception to rip-off, gold plated HDMI cables (probably the "M" brand, and I don't mean Monoprice) this took an interesting turn. Yes, there is no real thing as an HDTV antenna. I have a 30 year old Winegard on my roof that I put up for better analog reception back in the day, that works perfectly to this day for HDTV. It's a UHF-VHF 79 active element antenna about 30' from ground. A big sucker. I'd get myself off of the couch and at the very least check connectors etc. Rule that out. Forget the second amp but make sure the first one is working properly. I'd even try it without the amp depending on how long your RG6 cable run is. You did use RG6 cable, right? However, my guess is that being as your antenna is in the attic, any slight interference (swaying tree branches, electrical interference in the attic, etc) is going to affect your reception. Digital reception is fairly easy in that you either get it, or you don't. The fact that it cuts in and out means that your signal is just not consistently reaching the antenna for lots of reasons. It could even be the ATSC tuner in your tv. Not all ATSC tuners are made the same, especially on older tvs.

The suggestion about posting your TVFool info is your first step. There are quite a few folks here who can decipher that for you and even suggest an alternate antenna. It's not impossible to get good HDTV reception with an indoor antenna (house or attic) but it can be a bit more challenging than mounting it on your rooftop.
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post #8 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 04:10 PM
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All,
I stated that "A "High Definition" antenna is actually a highly directional standard antenna. I never meant to even imply that they had any thing special to receive digital signal.

See the info about multipath interference in the following link:

http://www.fixya.com/support/t5051481-looking_meaning_error_code_ced

Note the difference in directional charactertics in the antennaas in the following link.

http://hdtv-antenna-review.toptenreviews.com/

I am very familiar with installing antennas, having, worked in a TV shop while in high school installing antennas over 55 years ago.
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post #9 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford View Post

All,
I stated that "A "High Definition" antenna is actually a highly directional standard antenna. I never meant to even imply that they had any thing special to receive digital signal.
ANY antenna can be a High Definition antenna. The rest depends upon location, mounting, distance from x-mitters, x-mitters power, terrain, elevation, building construction, obstructions, trees, etc.etc etc.......

There is no HD antenna... there is no digital antenna. And... a "highly directional" antenna does not make it HD.
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post #10 of 16 Old 07-14-2012, 07:14 PM
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I think we're getting hung up on the term "high definition". High Definition, as you all know, is the number of pixels (simple put) carried on a digital stream, which is an 8VSB modulation, AC-3 audio coding, and MPEG-2 video coding all nicely wrapped up in a 6 MHz channel at 19.4Mbps (actually 18.8Mbps after overhead) data stream. So, any antenna that is designed to pick up UHF and VHF transmissions is a digital antenna, which in turn, will display any HD signal. As I stated before, I have a 30 year old antenna that was built long before 8VSB was even off of the design boards and it works perfectly.
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post #11 of 16 Old 07-16-2012, 11:44 AM
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I complete agree with your description of a "HD" antenna which is why I always enclose "HD" in quotes and I agree that highly directional antenna will receive analog signals as well as digital signals as stated above.
Do you agree that a digital tuner may have interference problems when receiving a sginal over multipaths by switching between the multipaths which are received at different times?
Do you agree that when an analog signal is subject to multipath interference you get ghosts which you do not get a with a digital signal?
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post #12 of 16 Old 07-16-2012, 01:30 PM
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Again....
There is no "HD" or "digital" antenna. It's just an antenna. References or trying to justify antennas with those terms is a disservice and confusing to posters.

Some ATSC receivers are better at multipath rejection than others.
Yes... multipathing with analog is presented as "ghosting". With digital, you get dropouts.
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post #13 of 16 Old 07-16-2012, 07:24 PM
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It has not been my intent to justify a company for calling an antenna an "HD" antenna, my only intent has been to explain why they think they can.
I remember back in 1955 when the TV shop where I worked sold their firsr Color TV and then the antenna companies labeled some of their top ot the line antennas as "Color TV" antennas.
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post #14 of 16 Old 07-17-2012, 05:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford View Post

It has not been my intent to justify a company for calling an antenna an "HD" antenna, my only intent has been to explain why they think they can..
I am not discussing about how companies market a product (even if deceptive). My point is that you stated:
Quote:
Originally Posted by walford 
A "High Definition" antenna is axctually a highly directional standard antenna and is often needed for digital TV signals since they are very subject multipath interference.

That is not accurate.

I guess this "HDTV antenna" is highly directional? biggrin.gif

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3611256
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post #15 of 16 Old 07-17-2012, 10:34 AM
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You are certainly correct that only some antennas marketed as "HD" antennas are highly directional, as you pointed out with the Radio Shack one whose "HD" feature is that it will receive channels 2-69.
I should not have stated the definition the way I did.since there is really no valid definition of what a "HD" antenna is since as all of you have said repeatly that an antenna is an antenna.
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post #16 of 16 Old 07-17-2012, 12:43 PM
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Phew! Glad we are now on the same page.
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