Antenna Choice from Anderson - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 07-15-2013, 01:26 PM - Thread Starter
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We decided a few months ago to rely on the over the air broadcast for our TV. We are located between Anderson and Townville, SC. Currently, all I have is a small flat antenna (which is really intended for interior use) mounted to the outside of my house about 15' above grade. Based on my research and from reading this forum as well as toying around with the small indoor antenna I am sure that I can get most of the Greenville stations with almost any roof mounted medium range antenna. However, I also want to get WLOS Ch 13 since they carry a lot of the football games.

With the little interior antenna that I have hung outside on the house I can receive the following broadcast signals (if the weather is perfect and tree foliage is not too thick):

4.1 (RF Ch 36) which is 41 miles at 17 degrees
7.1 (RF Ch 7) which is 53 miles at 35 degrees
21.1 (RF21) which is 45 miles at 10 degrees
62.1 (RF45) which is 49 miles at 18 degrees

I cannot get any signal from WLOS Channel 13, which is about 61 miles north (4 degrees) of me.

My question is this: What would you guys recommend in a VHF/UHF roof mount antenna that will collect the signals from Channel 13 as well as Channel 7 (and all of the UHF in between). The spread between 13 and 7 is about 30-35 degrees....according to AntennaWeb. From what I have read, the typical maximum spread that most antennas will pull in is about 20 degrees.

Will I have to have two VHF antennas, one directional pointed at Mt. Pisgah (Ch 13) and then another VHF/UHF antenna pointed toward the other stations? Or, is there a recommended antenna that should capture everything?

Of course the other considerations are the cost and the fact that I live in a fairly restrictive subdivision which would probably limit me to the height of my chimney, about 20-25 feet.

Thanks in advance for your help!!
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post #2 of 19 Old 07-15-2013, 03:41 PM
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Winegard 7696 or 7698 are very good HiVHF/UHF combo antennas. Also Antennacraft HBU-33 or HBU-55 versions sold at RadioShack. And possibly add a Winegard 8700 preamp. But if 13 is too much in a different direction from the other channels, then you may want a separate HiVHF antenna such as Antennacraft YA 7-13. And there is a smaller version HBU-22 sold at RadioShack which may have enough gain for all channels if you want to give it a try. But still consider a low gain preamp.
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post #3 of 19 Old 07-15-2013, 05:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks! I will look into those suggestions. I appreciate the help!
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post #4 of 19 Old 07-15-2013, 05:45 PM
 
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In your position, 61 miles is alot for the fact that you have the hills and mountains. LOS across the flat plane on the globe is at most 75 miles with no hills or mountains. Unless you can get it at least 50 to 75 feet in the air, which really is not doable, you will never pick up that station 61 miles away, unless they get a repeater nearer to you.
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post #5 of 19 Old 07-15-2013, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post

In your position, 61 miles is alot for the fact that you have the hills and mountains. LOS across the flat plane on the globe is at most 75 miles with no hills or mountains. Unless you can get it at least 50 to 75 feet in the air, which really is not doable, you will never pick up that station 61 miles away, unless they get a repeater nearer to you.

WLOS is completely doable in the Ops location with a decent VHF- antenna, I have family in Fountain Inn and they have no problem with an antenna in their attic picking up this station.

All Comments made are my own and not of my employer.
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post #6 of 19 Old 07-15-2013, 06:14 PM
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I would say just go to RadioShack and get a HBU-22 and give it a try. You can always return it. It may be all you need. And you can try one of their preamps and see if that helps. Although the Winegard 8700 from Solid Signal is a better performer, and cheaper at $29. And you could try and see if RadioShack will price match Solid Signal on the antenna.
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post #7 of 19 Old 07-15-2013, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ybsane View Post

WLOS is completely doable in the Ops location with a decent VHF- antenna, I have family in Fountain Inn and they have no problem with an antenna in their attic picking up this station.
My cousin in Fountain Inn gets WLOS, as well as WBTV, WCNC, and WJZY from Charlotte. Plus WYFF and WSPA of course. And I use only rabbit ears and a preamp in the attic in Mauldin and have no problem with 13, 7, or 9(29). But 13 is weakest and more strategic placement is required.
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post #8 of 19 Old 07-15-2013, 06:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Great information guys, thanks!! Buying at R.S. is also a good idea if they will allow me to return the antenna if it will not do the job....I love the prices of the smaller units the best... I have a lot of good information to look over.
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post #9 of 19 Old 07-16-2013, 05:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Another question: Which mast to use and which chimney bracket.....reviews all seem negative on the brackets I found.

Also, can the mast be attached to the top few feet of my chimney or should it go all the way to the ground (my chimney is on the outside wall of the house).

Another idea I have, is using my Direct TV dish mount which is attached to the north facing eave of the house, about 20-25 feet off of the ground and curves up above the roof (the dish is pointed south across the roof)....how large of an antenna would that mount typically hold (assuming I can figure a way to securely attach the antenna) Would the HBU-22 is about 5lbs and the HBU-33 is about 7lbs with a short mast be too heavy? Your opinions please....and THANKS!!!
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post #10 of 19 Old 07-16-2013, 06:46 PM
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RadioShack and Lowes sell masts and brackets. Also Solid Signal and Channel Master store online. But you may be able to use DirecTV mast for the HBU-22 since it is not that big.
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post #11 of 19 Old 07-18-2013, 08:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, but if I decide to strap an antenna to the chimney (my chimney is on an outside wall) should I buy enough mast to go all the way to the ground or can I merely strap the bottom 5' up onto the chimney? Also, what about grounding the mast....is that necessary?

One other question....do you have any opinion on the HD Stacker antenna from Denny's?? It cost three times that of the HBU 22 or about the same as the HBU-55....how would you compare them from what you know about them?

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post #12 of 19 Old 07-18-2013, 02:12 PM
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Instead of HD Stacker, if you go with 2 separate antennas, I would get an Antennacraft Y5 7-13 for HiVHF, and an Antennas Direct 43XG for UHF. Or a Winegard 9022 or Antennacraft MXU-47. You don't really need a larger UHF antenna. Combine the antennas with a UHF/VHF signal joiner (UVSJ) from Radioshack. It will allow power pass for a preamp on the UHF side. A Winegard 269 or 8700 preamp should work fine.
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post #13 of 19 Old 07-20-2013, 11:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, as soon as I can I am going to try a HBU 22 or 55 and then if that does not work I may try the two antenna method.... Based on what I have read and from the replies here on this forum, the 35 degree separation between Ch 7 and Ch 13 may require two antennas.
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post #14 of 19 Old 07-20-2013, 12:39 PM
 
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Slow dog, going with two antennas is better, even though some like the DB4 & DB8 will pick up high VHF (7-13). Because of foliage on our trees between my house and the antenna 8 miles away, I have found the signal dropped 8 points from where it was, when I originally put it in my attic. Using that as an example that you need to recheck your signals after the trees start defoliating and adjust accordingly to raise the signal on that one tower you are using the one antenna to receive, just like I did with my setup.

All I am using is the AntennaDirect DB8 and the AntennaCraft Y5713, and Channel Master 7778. In your area, you may need the Antennacraft Y10713 for high VHF, and the Channel master 7777. If you can find a local antenna shop that could let you try different pre-amps, that would be better, or just order both from Amazon.com, then return the other that does not work for you. I have done that with stuff, when trying to find the right option, and it is easier to order a couple items for the same job, then send back what you are not going to use.
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post #15 of 19 Old 07-20-2013, 04:12 PM
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I think try the HBU-22 first and see if it is adequate. Adjust the aim for best results. You may be able to find a sweet spot that will receive 13, as well as 7 and the other channels which should be stronger. As for the preamp, I think either a Winegard 8700 or Channel Master 7778 will be best, as the new CM-7777 is too strong at 30 db and may overload.
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post #16 of 19 Old 07-20-2013, 11:57 PM
 
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Tyler, the 7778 may not be overkill, due to the lay of the land that you happen to be in. You have to take into consideration of what is between you and the towers (ie hills, foliage, the fact that you are trying to pick up a station at the nexus of the max azimuth that any antenna will pick up, unless you can get it high enough (ie 75-125 feet in the air).
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post #17 of 19 Old 07-21-2013, 05:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post

Tyler, the 7778 may not be overkill, due to the lay of the land that you happen to be in. You have to take into consideration of what is between you and the towers (ie hills, foliage, the fact that you are trying to pick up a station at the nexus of the max azimuth that any antenna will pick up, unless you can get it high enough (ie 75-125 feet in the air).


The lay of the land is not that bad, Charter only has their antennas at the 30-35' level for all their locals.

All Comments made are my own and not of my employer.
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post #18 of 19 Old 07-22-2013, 02:28 PM - Thread Starter
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1) What is the best way to mount these antennas?? It will have to go on my chimney (outside wall) or a gable. I had considered using my Direct TV mast but the trees have grown up around it so badly that I will have to have a tree trimmed or removed to mount an antenna there.

2) Any suggestions on what brand of mounts or brackets and masts are the best?? I see a range of prices....

3) Also, how far down the chimney should the mast come and,

4) should the mast be grounded?

5) If I use 2 antennas:

A) How far apart on the mast should they be? and,

B) What type of a Combiner do I use when I join a VHF and a VHF/UHF antenna (since I will use a VHF for Ch 13 and a VHF/UHF for other channels)....I notice that the UVSJ combiner is for one VHF and one UHF antenna....

THANKS!!!!!
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post #19 of 19 Old 07-22-2013, 08:00 PM
 
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If the Chimney is solid, get the straps and attach it to the Chimney with two straps. Make sure that you have the pole high enough by at least six feet min above it. If you go on the gable, you may want to extend the pole down at least four feet on the wall, to make it solid, so that you do not have the two mounts only a foot or two feet apart, but still extend the antenna at least six feet min. above the peak of the roof. You want it higher than the highest point on the roof, and higher than tree line if possible, which would involve a tower to do that.

Brackets and mounts you can get at Lowe's, Home Depot, Radio Shack, online through Amazon.com if you want. They are all pretty much made in the same country (China).

As for the Splitter/Combiner, it goes between the two antennas. Make sure that it has DC pass through capabilities. All I did was use a off the shelf Radio Shack UHF/VHF Splitter/Combiner for my setup in my attic. My mount is a roof mount, that is mounted to a 2x6 screwed to the joists up there.
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