RCA TVPRAMP1R Preamplifier - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 38 Old 07-20-2014, 09:01 PM - Thread Starter
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RCA TVPRAMP1R Preamplifier

Are there any other such devices out there like this, something that combines two antennas (VHF & UHF), and also amplifies?

I'm looking around, and unless i'm not using the most appropriate search terms, I'm not finding anything....

Thanks much.
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post #2 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 12:08 AM
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Currently available, the AntennaCarft 10G222. No longer available new, the original Channel Master 7777 manufactured before 2012. You may still find the Channel Master on EBay, but you would need to see a picture of it to verify the dual inputs.
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post #3 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 01:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you pamajestic.

I was just reading-up on the CM 7777 though, and it seems like the reviews as of late are not all that good, so I find it interesting you state before 2012, but of course that is due to the dual inputs...

The image of the AC 10G222 on Solid Signal's website only shows 2 ports, 1 in and 1 out, so I didn't look any further. Thank you! Reading the specs, this is clearly 2 ins and 1 out. That said, very little in the way of reviews...

Thinking out loud... Instead of such a unit (RCA TVPRAMP1R or AC 10G222), how about the use of a combiner (UVSJ) and for amplification, use the power injector I have from the RCA TVPRAMP1R?

For the combiner, thinking something like this:

http://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp...Combiners&sku=

Thanks for the input.

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post #4 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 05:53 AM
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See Preamp Comparison Chart for additional alternatives, with Apples-To-Apples Overload Levels derived from Manu's Specs:
http://photos.imageevent.com/holl_an...20RevB.doc.pdf
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post #5 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 08:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyB1966 View Post
I was just reading-up on the CM 7777 though, and it seems like the reviews as of late are not all that good, so I find it interesting you state before 2012, but of course that is due to the dual inputs...
I measured the gain and noise of the old CM7777 and AD Tech measured the new CM7777. The noise figure on UHF was essentially identical running 2.8 to 3.2 dB. The noise on high VHF was better on the new CM7777 running about 2.3 dB and about 3.9 dB on the old. The gain on the new CM7777 is close to 30 dB (not necessarily a good thing) and the old about 21 to 23 dB.



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Originally Posted by TonyB1966 View Post
Thinking out loud... Instead of such a unit (RCA TVPRAMP1R or AC 10G222), how about the use of a combiner (UVSJ) and for amplification, use the power injector I have from the RCA TVPRAMP1R?

For the combiner, thinking something like this:

http://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp...Combiners&sku=
There's another way to do this. Use a UVSJ that passes DC power on both ports and run separate VHF and UHF preamps. The only one I know of is the Tin Lee LH7-230/470

http://www.tinlee.com/Diplexers.php?active=3

You have to request DC pass on both ports. Not an inexpensive diplexer.
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post #6 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 08:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Great info, from both of you. I will study that chart in detail when I get a break from work... I don't see the RCA preamp on there, which for me would be a reference point. The UHF portion of mine is not working now, thus my inquiry here...

Seems like a balancing act of sorts. We all want gain, but obviously too much is detrimental, namely to the stronger channels (overload). Is there an approach, like by discerning one's TV Fool report, to determine what preamps might be appropriate?

If so, here is mine: http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...e1c63a8f99b9a8

Yes, a somewhat challenging spot...

I have a ClearStream 4 (CS4) UHF antenna pointing at 312 degrees (true). It's doing a good job, I'm happy to say, even more so when I added the RCA preamp into the mix. I then added an RCA ANT751 (same mast), pointing at 168, with its only task to get one channel (8, both NBC and ABC). If also gets UHF though, but the RCA preamp filtered that out on the VHF port of course.

Since channel 8 at 168 degrees is an easy get, the RCA ANT751 is somewhat overkill. For 20 bucks I'm looking now to get the ClearStream VFH add-on that attaches to the CS4, and it incorporates a combiner. I then can get a "normal" preamp on the mast... Curious to hear any thoughts on that approach. Would seem to simplify things and open the door to more preamp choices.

Thanks much!

Last edited by TonyB1966; 07-21-2014 at 09:00 AM. Reason: grammar and typos (was in a rush)
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post #7 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 09:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post
See Preamp Comparison Chart for additional alternatives, with Apples-To-Apples Overload Levels derived from Manu's Specs:
http://photos.imageevent.com/holl_an...20RevB.doc.pdf
Unfortunately, the list is pretty old and every product on the list has been discontinued and is generally NLA, except perhaps as NOS or on eBay.

The RCA is currently the only consumer pre-amp that that has a switchable UHF/VHF selection that I've seen recently. The AntennaCraft split-input amps are full time splits, no combiner is build into their inputs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ;
We all want gain,
What we should want is the CORRECT amount of gain, along with a low noise figure and good overload tolerance. Too much gain is a symptom of the "mo better" attitude ("Hey, if a little bit is good, then mo' is better!") which usually leads to poor results.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ;
I'm looking now to get the ClearStream VFH add-on that attaches to the CS4, and it incorporates a combiner. I then can get a "normal" preamp on the mast... Curious to hear any thoughts on that approach.
We recommend that all day long. It works well enough except, perhaps, in very critical situations.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ;
Use a UVSJ that passes DC power on both ports
I haven't gotten around to doing this experiment yet, but I suspect that you could pop the cover off a Holland or Tru-Spec diplexer and solder in a 100 uH coil (Radio Shack 273-102, if it fits) between the common and the UHF terminals and make your own inexpensively.
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post #8 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 11:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Ok, I just made some time to read...

Indeed, many of those products on that chart are discontinued. That said, it's still quite useful.

In Calaveras' signature I found a neat article (Article on Preamps, SNR/NM/Signal Strength, etc.) that I'm reading now.

BTW, before I forget, here is combiner with a DC pass:

http://www.amazon.com/CHANNEL-2512-P...BTZ8R8EKQB0DRY

To use something like this, must one input be strictly VHF and the other UHF only? Was thinking of this to combine two antennas, and feed the 1 coax output into a preamp. Not sure if this combiner is outdoor rated though. I see no such indication...

ADTech, helpful info, thank you. Glad to hear that the CS VHF add on is strongly recommended. Instead, I might go that route, get that add-on, which incorporates a combiner, then another mast-mount preamp. Not sure what happened with the RCA unit...

This gets me back to the preamp of choice for my spot. The RCA TVPRAMP1R made for an improvement, but two highly desired channels were spotty (FOX 44 and CBS 29). More gain would seem desirable. The RCA TVPRAMP1R is said to have VHF 16 dB and UHF 22 dB. I recall loss being in 2 to 3 db range...

I nice write-up here: http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?p=37643

The current Winegard offering, the LNA-200 Boost, seems to be around 18 db, so less than the RCA unit. Noise is around 1 db though...
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post #9 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 02:18 PM
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The LNA200 noise figure, as well as it's overload specifications as provided in marketing materials, are both seriously flawed (inaccurate). It's a long way from having a 1 dB NF.

The Channel Plus device shown is a simple power splitter/combiner, it is not a UVSJ for combining a single UHF antenna to a single VHF antenna.

More antenna gain might be useful, but more amplifier gain will not be likely to be helpful.

.

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Last edited by ADTech; 07-21-2014 at 02:22 PM.
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post #10 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 04:03 PM - Thread Starter
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How about something like this instead?

http://www.amazon.com/Antennas-Direc...=ATVPDKIKX0DER

Then a preamp...

A small form-factor antenna is a requirement in our situation, and a CS4 certainly qualifies. It's pulling stations 63 miles away, per TV Fool, even before the introduction of the preamp. My coaxial run it about 20 feet, from antenna to TV, so pretty good in that respect...
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post #11 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 09:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pamajestic View Post
Currently available, the AntennaCarft 10G222. No longer available new, the original Channel Master 7777 manufactured before 2012. You may still find the Channel Master on EBay, but you would need to see a picture of it to verify the dual inputs.
Look what I found on Overstock.com:

http://www.overstock.com/Electronics...2/product.html

Both the image and description depict this being the older 7777... Yes?
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post #12 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 11:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyB1966 View Post
Look what I found on Overstock.com:

http://www.overstock.com/Electronics...2/product.html

Both the image and description depict this being the older 7777... Yes?
That is it and not a bad price. I paid $61 delivered 6 years ago. EBay seller limitedgoods also has some available for the same price.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/CHANNEL-MAST...-/251584853204
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post #13 of 38 Old 07-22-2014, 12:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Ordered. Thanks much.

I take it there is not much demand for these now a days (a combiner w/ preamp). Not sure I ever purchased a new, discontinued product before, at least knowingly...

This seems to have a little more gain and less noise than the RCA preamp. I think this will be just what I need to secure those last two channels. Really appreciate the help.
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post #14 of 38 Old 07-22-2014, 03:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyB1966;
I think this will be just what I need to secure those last two channels.
Doubtful.... The old 7777's NF was never as good as claimed.

Don't be surprised if you get the new 7777. What are the real odds that Overstock found a stash of the old amps to sell when they've been cleaned out everywhere else two years ago?
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post #15 of 38 Old 07-22-2014, 09:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Doubtful.... The old 7777's NF was never as good as claimed.

Don't be surprised if you get the new 7777. What are the real odds that Overstock found a stash of the old amps to sell when they've been cleaned out everywhere else two years ago?
Of course that was my concern; and why I looked at the description as well as the photo. I even saved such (screenshot), just in case that might be needed. If the new one arrives, I'll get a full refund, including shipping. No worries there...

Not sure why you are doubtful on the old CM 7777 in my application. First, after some reading, including on this forum, I should be fine with respect to over amplification. The vast majority of the channels I seek are 63 miles away, the nearest, 28. The consensus was that anything over 20 miles is generally fine. Good there.

While I realize that mfg specs are not always accurate or what we see in actuality, the CM 7777 is being compared to the RCA preamp that it will replace; and that too has actual performance figures less than advertised, so I've read. Gain-wise, there's a several db delta, and the NF on the RCA is around 3db (actual).

Given that I get the these two channels in question, pretty decently at times (SNR around 20), the extra oomph of the 7777 has some promise...
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post #16 of 38 Old 07-22-2014, 09:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Earlier I brought-up the Clear Stream VHF Retrofit Kit, and how I might use this, along with it's combiner to simplify my set-up. I reached-out to Antennas Direct, along with my TV Fool Report, and got this:

It's unlikely that the VHF dipole will be sufficient for KSBW in your location. It appears you're on the wrong side of the hill and that the signals will be very weak. I'd recommend the ClearStream 5 instead for this purpose.

A prompt reply that I really appreciate. So, I won't go that route, and stay with my small RCA ANT751 that gets this channel very well (SNR around 27).
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post #17 of 38 Old 07-22-2014, 06:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pamajestic View Post
That is it and not a bad price. I paid $61 delivered 6 years ago. EBay seller limitedgoods also has some available for the same price.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/CHANNEL-MAST...-/251584853204
It is not necessarily clear in the description if these are the older model 7777s or the newer version. They may just be incorrectly using the old picture like some other vendors did for a while. The newer version is a decent amp, but it is often more gain than needed at 30 db. And it does not have the dual inputs. The best replacement for the original CM-7777 is the RCA preamp, and it actually may be more tolerant of overload according to reports.
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post #18 of 38 Old 07-22-2014, 08:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
It is not necessarily clear in the description if these are the older model 7777s or the newer version. They may just be incorrectly using the old picture like some other vendors did for a while.
Well that certainly is a possibility, but I hope it’s not. I sure Tony will report back after he takes delivery.
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post #19 of 38 Old 07-22-2014, 09:08 PM - Thread Starter
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The "best replacement" or the only one? If there are others, nothing discontinued, I'd like to know....

Along these lines, I used RCA's / Voxx's online portal to share that this preamp failed (UHF side), showed proof of my Amazon order 6 weeks ago, and they are sending out a new one. Since they couldn't ship today, they are doing 2 day UPS . Mighty cool of them.

So, if the CM-7000 is not as advertised, I'll have the RCA again....

Indeed, I'll report back after delivery. Hoping it will be this week though. Still no shipping info provided. If it is indeed the dual input CM-7000, I plan to mount the power injector / inserter in the attic, literally about 5 to 6 feet below the antennas and mast-mounted CM-7000. Doing everything I can to get an edge here and there...

This is not exactly doable or as desirable with the RCA preamp as it has its own thin coax segment on the power injector, requiring a barrel for a longer run, which introduces some loss...

Last edited by TonyB1966; 07-22-2014 at 10:06 PM.
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post #20 of 38 Old 07-23-2014, 03:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ;
requiring a barrel for a longer run, which introduces some loss...
Since the tiny bit of insertion loss is between the injector and the amp, it's largely irrelevant, as is generally the length of the coax between the injector and amp for all but the very long coax lengths.
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post #21 of 38 Old 07-23-2014, 08:37 AM - Thread Starter
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I hear ya and agree. I even thought of opening-up the RCA power injector and removing the skimpy coax (not much insulation) and wiring-in some heftier RG6, a sufficient length, so no need for a barrel. Now that I have another RCA preamp arriving tomorrow (free replacement), I might just do that with this extra power injector...

Looks like the CM-7777 won't be here until Monday. Drat.
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post #22 of 38 Old 07-23-2014, 12:50 PM
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You can order a different power injector from Motorola or PCT via Amazon and use it with the RCA preamp. They should have similar specs and may actualy perform better. And MCM also sells a remote power injector by Holland which is about 5 bucks I believe. And there is no coax connected to these models.
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post #23 of 38 Old 07-23-2014, 01:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks tylerSC. Searching Amazon now to see if I can find what you mean. Makes sense though.
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post #24 of 38 Old 07-28-2014, 10:52 PM - Thread Starter
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As a matter of follow-up, I'm reporting that the CM-7777 being offered at Overstock is NOT as advertised. It's the new model with 1 input and 1 output.

Also, I tried contacting the aforementioned eBay seller, I think "limitedgoods", twice, asking about CM-7777 and heard nothing back. And After reading the negative reviews / feedback, buyers stating that they got the wrong items, misrepresentations, etc, I will not order from this seller.

So.... It's the RCA. I did find one more ebay seller listing the old 7777, I sent a question, but I'm not going to hold my breath...
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post #25 of 38 Old 07-29-2014, 07:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyB1966 View Post
This is not exactly doable or as desirable with the RCA preamp as it has its own thin coax segment on the power injector, requiring a barrel for a longer run, which introduces some loss...
A longer coax for the DC supply is pretty much irrelevant. Most preamps have a voltage regulator in them so the preamp runs on a much lower voltage than than the supply. Many preamps use an 8V regulator and the supply is 12 - 18 VDC. In those cases anything in that range is fine.
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post #26 of 38 Old 07-29-2014, 09:09 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks Calaveras for the response. I was wondering such, but when a technical rep at CM said that he too has the power inserter in the attic, closer to the antenna/s, it confirmed the logic.

At this point, since I have just the RCA, I'll keep the inserter at the end of the line, behind the TV.

I guess most folks with dual or multi antenna systems use a combiner, with an associated loss, then if desired / needed, into a preamp with single input.

A nice read that I had bookmarked: http://www.hdtvprimer.com/ANTENNAS/merging.html
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post #27 of 38 Old 07-29-2014, 09:53 AM
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To learn more about the RCA amp, check out this thread from last year over at TVFool. Mike (tripelo) did a very good job with his observations regarding the RCA and the old CM 777x amps.

http://forum.tvfool.com/showthread.php?t=13530

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post #28 of 38 Old 07-29-2014, 01:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks ADTech. I actually provided that link earlier in the thread.

I guess there is little demand for such a device these days...
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post #29 of 38 Old 07-29-2014, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyB1966 View Post
As a matter of follow-up, I'm reporting that the CM-7777 being offered at Overstock is NOT as advertised. It's the new model with 1 input and 1 output.

Also, I tried contacting the aforementioned eBay seller, I think "limitedgoods", twice, asking about CM-7777 and heard nothing back. And After reading the negative reviews / feedback, buyers stating that they got the wrong items, misrepresentations, etc, I will not order from this seller.

So.... It's the RCA. I did find one more ebay seller listing the old 7777, I sent a question, but I'm not going to hold my breath...
I was concerned that would be the case. Sorry to hear that.
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post #30 of 38 Old 07-29-2014, 03:43 PM - Thread Starter
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I was concerned that would be the case. Sorry to hear that.
No worries tylerSC. I knew this was possible prior to ordering. Full refund, nor charge to ship back. I'll get confirmation of that though in the next day or two...
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