NÔÔB Amplifier Help, do I need to buy a separate CATV Amplifier? (GOOD GRAPHICS!) - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 10:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi again guys.

I have the equipment that you see I've carefully rendered in graphic form and numbered the banks on the amplifier. I am so clueless about cabling I quite literally have to be able to point to something by its color and its number lol.

This past week when I had Comcast out to fix my (Basic CATV) signal I brought the guy into my house to have a look at the second TV in my home this one, in my bedroom, connected to a Boston Home Theatre setup with the Sony HT Amplifier you see above. The problem is my cable reception is really rough (snowy, popping in, popping out etc.) and I wanted him to boost the signal to this one connection as long as he was here repairing the box outside.

He pointed out that because the connection was "in the wall" he could do nothing for me . . . but he recommended I invest in an AC-powered COAXIAL amplifier. I thanked him; he left; and then I went back into my bedroom and realized . . . Wait a minute, I have this big HT amplifier already shouldn't it be able to do the job?

I had never tested any radio channels on the thing, so I spent an hour fiddling around with it and trying to get an FM signal. No joy, I have virtually no radio reception which didn't surprise me because even the stereo setup in my living room (w/Harmon Kardon amp) required a separate AC-powered FM booster before it, too, could receive a signal.

I've never been entirely certain that I hooked up my setup the right way so if anyone is brave enough to help me I'd appreciate it.

I am not averse to purchasing a separate AC-powered CATV amplifier and I'm also not averse to purchasing a separate AC-powered FM amplifier so if it is determined that my Sony HT amplifier is insufficient to boost both the CATV and the FM signals, I would appreciate very much your recommending which amplifiers have the biggest boost.

I live on the other side of the Berkeley Hills and we have notoriously bad cell-phone/radio/television signals, so if you're going to recommend models for me to purchase, please recommend the absolutely most powerful ones available.

First however, could we confirm that what I already have is insufficient? Here are the graphics; this is the model; and thank you in advance for anyone kind enough to help me.

fm

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post #2 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 03:05 PM
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Your Sony A/V amplifier is NOT a cable TV or FM amplifier.

I am guessing the cable guy on the service call checked your signal levels at the demarcation point (usually the ground block) and they were within specifications.

So the problem lies within your home and adding a signal amplifier will probably not help. You need to check every cable run and connection for bad crimps, bad cable (replace any long RG-59 cable runs with RG-6 cable), replace any old splitters that are rated less than 1 Ghz, remove any splitters that are not really needed.

If you can not do this yourself, some cable companies will do it for you, but they charge for this type of service. Ask around maybe one of your friends or coworkers can help you or know someone who will do it cheaply...

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post #3 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 05:01 PM
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Yes I second the statement above if you have a techie coworker, neighbor, relative etc
I would ask them to go through your system from the demark point until you reach your TV.
How is the reception to the first TV?
Something you can do yourself is to feel and tighten all of the connectors that you can see.
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post #4 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 05:01 PM - Thread Starter
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EDIT:
Okay, that's for the antenna. Disregard the following. It's all amp to me lol.

fm

Hi 11001011, yes he plugged into his equipment. May I ask what the FM connection is doing on an amplifier? I'm not being argumentative, I honestly don't know.

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post #5 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 05:04 PM - Thread Starter
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RCbridge . . . the first TV has crystal-clear reception. My second TV has always been rough this way.

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post #6 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 05:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frivolousme View Post

EDIT:
Okay, that's for the antenna. Disregard the following. It's all amp to me lol.

fm

Hi 11001011, yes he plugged into his equipment. May I ask what the FM connection is doing on an amplifier? I'm not being argumentative, I honestly don't know.

Because it has an FM tuner in it.

What you are calling a AV amplifier, I believe is really best called an AV Receiver. I know it's just semantics and it might even say "AV Amplifier" on it's front panel but the only amplifier it has in it is an audio amp to drive your speakers.

The FM/AM antenna input if for the built in tuner, the TV coax, video, RGB, S-video, DVD, HDMI, etc. inputs are for convenience and are switched only not amplified in any way.

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post #7 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 05:43 PM
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Also I forgot to mention that attaching your TV cable to the FM input may or may not give you any FM radio reception.

Long ago cable companies used to put the local and regional FM radio stations on the cable. Most stopped doing this a decade or more ago when they started supplying "Music choice" audio channels. My local cable company puts all local FM broadcast stations in the same cable TV channel range as the Music Choice audio.

I have tried connecting my cable to my receiver and I get better FM reception with the twin-lead "T" FM antenna that came with my receiver.

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post #8 of 9 Old 06-05-2011, 06:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 11001011 View Post

What you are calling a AV amplifier, I believe is really best called an AV Receiver. I know it's just semantics and it might even say "AV Amplifier" on it's front panel but the only amplifier it has in it is an audio amp to drive your speakers.

Ahhh. Okay. Yes, you're correct about the COAX, as well. This is what I have plugged into the FM receiver in my living room to the Harmon Kardon er . . . box heh he.

I'll go shopping for an AC-powered amplifier. If it doesn't work I can always resell it (and it's muuuuch cheaper than hiring someone, which I would have to do).

Since I seem to be clueless about the difference between an "amplifier" and a "receiver" I guess I should ask: Would I in fact be shopping for an "amplifier" . . . or something else?

Also, I don't suppose there are models that have the FM and CATV power-boosting combined? Thanks 11001011!

fm

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post #9 of 9 Old 06-06-2011, 05:48 AM
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Quote:
RCbridge . . . the first TV has crystal-clear reception. My second TV has always been rough this way.
If this is the case then you need to start tracing the cables from the splitter to that second TV.
Make sure all connectors are tight if you can remove them and retighten them, wiggle the cables ends near the TV and the wall plate as you watch the picture for changes.
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