Clearwater, FL: Attic Antenna Advice - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 02-04-2013, 07:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello everyone,

I am new to the forum and to "cutting the cord" and going OTA. I am looking at an attic mounted antenna since I have a lot of strong channels and I would be able to use the existing coaxial cable http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id%3d1dda031727bb22

I am considering the RCA 751R and Clearstream C2V, since the relatively compact size would work better in the attic. Does anyone have any advice on these two (or any others), or advice on attic mounting in my location? Thanks!
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post #2 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 03:01 AM
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Either should work providing your attic doesn't feature disqualifying features such as a metal roof or radiant barrier insulation or complications such as HVAC or plumbing equipment up there.
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post #3 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 05:29 AM - Thread Starter
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How far away from HVAC would it need to be?
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post #4 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 09:25 AM
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As much as possible.....and NOT between the antenna and the desired broadcast towers.
And A/C ducts may use METAL (vice Plastic) spiral insides....and METAL foil insulation....

Search around the attic for a "hot spot".....Location, Location, Location.....
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post #5 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 09:31 AM
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I don't think the HVAC would be an issue ( you can try it with the unit off and on to see) , but more importantly you are 32 miles away from the towers. which is kind of at the outer limits for an attic antenna. You can try out the ANT 751 which I think is available at most Walmarts. You can test it out in the attic, point it to the ESE and see if you get all the channels. Try to run a short piece of RG6 to the nearest TV. If you have trouble receiving stations, you may need to put the antenna outside, which is always better, but keep in mind in your neck of the woods where lightning storms are frequent, you must ground the antenna properly. Obviously you don't have to worry about grounding if the antenna is in the attic.
If you don't like the results, you could always return the antenna.
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post #6 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 10:21 AM
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The ANT751 should do the trick, but may require lots of experimentation with mounting locations.

I installed an ANT 751 just inches above the drop ceiling of a commercial building surrounded by foil wrapped HVAC ducts, flourescent light fixtures & the ceiling support wires. With about 1 hour of experimenting, I found a good spot & reception is very satisfactory with this TV Fool report.
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post #7 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 05:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Is there any reason to believe the 751 would outperform the c2v? I'm leaning slightly toward the c2v due to it's increased advertised range over the 751, but it appears the 751 is more directional, which might make it more suitable? In my old FL home, the only thing in the attic is hvac (no plumbing, foil insulation, etc) and I have a plywood-shingle roof with a direct shot to the ESE in multiple locations without any hvac in the way.
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post #8 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 06:28 PM
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The C2v would likely be better on UHF while the 751 would likely be better on high-VHF. Your call.

Advertised ranges are just estimates, usually from a marketing department. There is nothing that ties them to actual technical performance, either real or calculated.
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post #9 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProjectSHO89 View Post

The C2v would likely be better on UHF while the 751 would likely be better on high-VHF.
Agreed. Since the antenna is going in the attic, I would lean toward the ANT751 because it's better VHF performance will really pay off inside a VHF unfriendly attic environment.
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post #10 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 07:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks! I am buying the ANT 751 then. A follow up question: I have Verizon FIOS currently for cable and internet, and the signal for both comes out of a single coaxial cable from the wall to a splitter, then to the cable box and the modem. Would a combiner allow me to utilize the existing cable runs to avoid running new cable to all the rooms but still preserve the high-speed internet? Are there any other considerations?

I really appreciate the knowledge and advice on this site! Thanks for the help!
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post #11 of 19 Old 02-05-2013, 07:39 PM
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No, you CANNOT mix OTA with Fios on the same coax. A separate cable run is required to connect the ANT751 to your TV.
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post #12 of 19 Old 02-09-2013, 02:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Well I bought the 751 and installed it in the attic yesterday, after running 50' of new coax. Without any trial and error, I just pointed it to ENE and I received 14 channels, including the NBC and CBS affiliates on High-VHF (these were the only ones I was worried about receiving). I could not believe how much better the pitcure was! I called Verizon today and canceled the cable...unfortunately they charge an arm and a leg for high-speed internet without a bundle ($75/month for 15 Mbps!). I won't be saving as much as I had hoped, but definitely better than before.

I will do more testing to see if I can pick up any more. Would an amp help pick up more channels, even though I'm only running the signal through a single 50' line of coax?
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post #13 of 19 Old 02-09-2013, 02:48 PM
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Glad to hear the good news!! You may add a few channels by adding an amplifier, but the only way to tell is to try. How far down the TV Fool report are you receiving stations? Are you planning on connecting more televisions in the future?
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post #14 of 19 Old 02-09-2013, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
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I made it to WEDU but no WXPX, which seems strange to me since they look similar on tvfool. But I did just one quick mount and scan, as it was getting late. I can't imagine that I hit the "sweet spot" on my fist try, so I'm hopeful I can get a few more. Do you have a recomendation for a preamp based on my tvfool?
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post #15 of 19 Old 02-09-2013, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdel06 View Post

I just pointed it to ENE and I received 14 channels
Should be more like ESE.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boxing_the_compass

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post #16 of 19 Old 02-09-2013, 06:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Yes, sorry...thats what I meant. I pointed at about 118 deg.
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post #17 of 19 Old 02-10-2013, 09:07 AM
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I would try raising/lowering the antenna in 6 inch increments if only 1 station is missing. It may be sitting in a dead spot for that one channel.

Either the Winegard 8700 or Antennacraft 10G201 would be good pre-amp choices if one is truly needed. If 3 or more sets will be connected in the future, I would use the Channel Master 3414.
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post #18 of 19 Old 02-10-2013, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdel06 View Post

I made it to WEDU but no WXPX, which seems strange to me since they look similar on tvfool.
Maybe there's multipath interference on WXPX? You might need to try different locations (both elevation and floorplan) for the antenna.
If you have a tuner that can display both signal strength and signal quality, then locating/aiming the antenna would be a bit easier. (Multipath would show as a strong but low-quality signal.)

BTW my attic-mounted antennae can receive all the green-colored channels of my tvfool chart, which includes a station 36 miles away with a power level of -60dBm (whereas your WXPX is at -40dBm). I do use distribution amps to split the signals.
Quote:
I'm only running the signal through a single 50' line of coax?
Depends on the quality of the coax cable (premium coax is Belden 1694A which I was able to get a while back at 56 cents per foot), and if it has been properly handled (no kinks, no sharp bends, no hard pulling, proper staples).
BTW WXPX is at a much higher broadcast frequency than WEDU (638MHz versus 210MHz), and the coax loss could be almost double. So even though the predicted signal strength are similar (at the antenna), the tuner will receive different power levels.

Regards
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post #19 of 19 Old 02-16-2013, 07:37 PM - Thread Starter
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So after moving the antenna around the whole attic, the initial position proved to be the sweet spot. In fact, I found it very difficult to even get the channels back that I had received initially. The worst part was that I lost a reliable signal on both the NBC and CBS affiliates, so I ordered a Winegard 8700 and rigged up a crude reflector out of aluminum foil and cardboard, which held me over until the preamp arrived. After installing the 8700, I am now receiving 52 channels, most of which are >97%. I couldn't be happier with my set-up; thanks so much for all the advice!
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