Attic Installation Antenna Recommendations with High VHF in Sacramento - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 01-10-2013, 10:52 AM - Thread Starter
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I decided to quit Comcast and try out OTA with an HTPC setup. I bought into the hype for the Mohu Leaf antenna and mounted it in my attic. Unfortunately, while I get all UHF channels beautifully, the main VHF channels in my area (Channel 10 being the main one I want) are spotty and video/audio hiccup about every 3-4 seconds. I have an antenna run of about 75 feet from the Mohu to a motorola signal booster to a splitter feeding one Hauppauge pvr-1800 and HDhomerun Dual.

Here is the relevant tvfool:

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id%3dc84fd41209dd1a

My main hope is to get recommendations for an antenna that gets better high VHF, at least equivalent UHF to the Mohu, and could be carried up through the tiny entry into the attic (about 2 feet by 18 inches hole). I realize being in the attic is less than ideal, especially since the antenna has to face a junction point between the stucco exterior and an asphalt roofline. I have been looking at the RCA ANT751 or even going all the way up to the Winegard HD7694P as an option to replace the Mohu or alternatively getting a more VHF focused antenna and combining it with the Mohu UHF signal, but was wondering if anyone else has a better solution.

Thanks for any thoughts!
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post #2 of 13 Old 01-10-2013, 04:43 PM
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The ANT 751, 7694 or the ClearStream 2V would all likely work.

Move the amp to the antenna so it can do its job properly (if it's even needed).

Be patient and try different spots in the attic as needed.
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post #3 of 13 Old 01-10-2013, 04:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, I just discovered that my amp has a remote power capability so I'll be getting the power injector adapter to make this possible. The lack of power up in the attic was the only reason I put the amp at the end of the cable run and before the splitter in the first place. I assumed it was necessary given the long cable run + splitting, but given your feedback, I will try taking the amp out altogether just to see! I am leaning toward the ANT 751 given that it's a bit cheaper than the other units and I could mount it to a rafter outside the house if the attic doesn't work out.
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post #4 of 13 Old 01-10-2013, 06:30 PM
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The Motorola amps are very good and you can order their remote power supply from Amazon. But it does help to place the amp close to the antenna before you lose signal. Also consider Antennacraft HBU22. It is a good, compact UHF/HiVHF combo antenna. A bit more VHF gain than the C2V or the 751, but both of those are good antennas also.
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post #5 of 13 Old 01-11-2013, 04:40 AM
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You may want to consider the Antennacraft HBU-22 as well. Any of the suggested antennas will outperform the Mohu. An amplifier will not likely be needed with a proper antenna unless the signal will be split to multiple outlets.
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post #6 of 13 Old 01-11-2013, 08:37 AM
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The Digitenna incorporates a VHF element and works quite well for high VHF as well as UHF.

http://digitenna.com/

Whatever antenna you go with make sure it has enough gain (high signal capture). You'll maintain a good signal to noise ratio even when conditions aren't ideal.
Try to avoid amplifiers unless you need to split to multiple locations. Amps can amplify any signal in the immediate area and cause signal overload in the TV's tuner.
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post #7 of 13 Old 01-11-2013, 10:10 AM - Thread Starter
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jimboy, that is one of my main concerns, how well the antenna will work in bad weather, we get a decent amount of fog and about 4 months of rainy weather, so I want to make sure that I have enough gain for the worst case scenario. I've actually been able to find a sweet spot in the attic for the Mohu where I get channel 10, but the signal for some UHF channels dropped in signal from 6 bars to 4 on the windows media center tuner signal meter. I think this is workable until the new antenna arrives, but I doubt it will work when rain is sheeting down outside...

Wow, the Antennacraft 22 has a boom length of 70"! It would definitely fit, but would probably end up being within a few feet of some flexible foil-insulated heating duct and about 10 feet away from the large metal shroud of the rooftop heating/cooling unit as well. Given the chance of interference, would I perhaps be better off going with a smaller antenna and mounting it further away, or would the larger HBU22 overcome these issues?
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post #8 of 13 Old 01-11-2013, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fmriguy View Post

" flexible foil-insulated heating duct and about 10 feet away from the large metal shroud of the rooftop heating/cooling unit as well."

Multipath makers.......
Sounds like you're better off on the roof
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post #9 of 13 Old 01-11-2013, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fmriguy View Post

... I realize being in the attic is less than ideal, especially since the antenna has to face a junction point between the stucco exterior and an asphalt roofline.

Signals can pass thru the asphalt shingles pretty well, but the stucco can be a problem. The chicken wire under the stucco can ruin your reception.
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post #10 of 13 Old 01-11-2013, 06:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimboy View Post

The Digitenna incorporates a VHF element and works quite well for high VHF as well as UHF.

http://digitenna.com/

Whatever antenna you go with make sure it has enough gain (high signal capture). You'll maintain a good signal to noise ratio even when conditions aren't ideal.
Try to avoid amplifiers unless you need to split to multiple locations. Amps can amplify any signal in the immediate area and cause signal overload in the TV's tuner.
The DUV bowtie element of the Digitennas is built into the balun as a driven element, enhancing the signal. And supposedly their baluns have very well designed circuitry. But Digitenna is a very good antenna, althoiugh a bit pricey unless you find a wholesale distributor. Great for UHF, and decent for HiVHF, but you may still prefer HBU22 or 7696 for higher VHF gain.
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post #11 of 13 Old 01-11-2013, 06:46 PM
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I know you want an attic install, but was the Leaf ever tryed elsewhere? A window might be better for both channel 10 and 6. A window facing south would be a bonus. You could also eliminate a 75 ft. cable run. I'm getting all of Walnut Grove with a Leaf in a room with a favorable window and less signal than you have according to TVFool. Good Luck.
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post #12 of 13 Old 01-11-2013, 10:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deltaguy View Post

I know you want an attic install, but was the Leaf ever tryed elsewhere? A window might be better for both channel 10 and 6. A window facing south would be a bonus. You could also eliminate a 75 ft. cable run. I'm getting all of Walnut Grove with a Leaf in a room with a favorable window and less signal than you have according to TVFool. Good Luck.

I did try the Mohu indoors, the only problem being that the TV location is in the northeast corner of the house and all of the nearby windows either face east or north, it couldn't be in a worse spot, unfortunately. The signal had to go through a stucco exterior wall and 2 lath and plaster interior walls, not to mention the house next door which is due south. mad.gif I decided instead to use the existing comcast-run cable, which terminates at the southwest corner of the house to bring the antenna into the south corner of the attic (just at a high enough height that I can peek past the roofline of the neighboring house.
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post #13 of 13 Old 01-21-2013, 11:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for your recommendations, I installed the new HBU22 this weekend and removed the amplifier altogether. I'm now seeing about 80% signal and 78% signal quality on my hdhomerun tuners for the pesky channel 10. Some of the UHF channels have dropped a small amount but are generally in the 70's and 80's. I'll keep my fingers crossed for when we get some bad weather, but so far so good!
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