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post #1 of 17 Old 10-05-2015, 06:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Rooftop antenna doesn't provide signal

Hi all
I'm connecting and HDTV to a rooftop antenna for over the air. So far no signal. I've experimented with a small, new HD antenna - set it outside - and got a couple of stations, and we had reception years ago. (Im in the 54981 zipcode in Wisconsin.)
I ran a new length of coaxial cable to the rooftop antenna and tried to connect with that. No channels received. I note that there's the two wire antenna wire connecting at several points to the antenna. Looks intact. It runs to a small plastic box where it connects with the coaxial. Looks like there's a small circuit board in there. But dont see a power connection to that device, so am unclear what it is or if that's part of the issue. Should I get a new balun connector and try that? I feel like I'm very close but missing a step or idea.
Thanks much!
Jim
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post #2 of 17 Old 10-05-2015, 06:44 PM
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Quote:
I feel like I'm very close but missing a step or idea.
You're probably missing everything....

Did you even program the TV to work with an antenna? Check its owner's manual for instructions.

Site instructions: Mandatory: Read before posting

Details needed, at a minimum: NOTE: Put YOUR LOCATION in the TITLE of ALL antenna threads & TVFOOL info in 1st post
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post #3 of 17 Old 10-05-2015, 08:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Waupaca Wis. 54981, trying to connect rooftop antenna

Apologies for not following the rules;
yes I followed the antenna directions for the TV; that's how I knew there was signal via the smaller antenna.
It's for about 3 miles west of Waupaca Wisconsin, zip 54981.
I tried to paste in the TV Fool report link but I got the five posts needed report.
Would it be better for me to start a new question?
Many thanks.
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post #4 of 17 Old 10-05-2015, 09:05 PM
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Try looking at the coverage maps at TVFool, and then try posting in the local thread for a market near you in northern Wisconsin. It looks as though you are about 55 miles west of Green Bay and roughly 50 miles southeast of Wausau. You probably won't have line of sight to much of anything, unless you were to have your antenna mounted atop a pretty high tower. Also, a couple of the stations from Wausau are on RF channels in the VHF range.

At over fifty miles, there is a good chance that you would need a pre-amp.

Rabbitears.info is a good resource for finding out which stations have translators, what subchannel programming the stations carry, and other useful information.

Last edited by veedon; 10-05-2015 at 09:11 PM. Reason: mentioned rabbitears.info
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post #5 of 17 Old 10-06-2015, 05:41 AM
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It also helps greatly if you identify your specific antenna(s) in use. If you don't know, use pictures.

As for the TVFool plot, use the interactive tool to pinpoint your rooftop, run the radar plot, then copy an intentionally modified link (replace the 'http' with 'hxxp', for example) that we can re-assemble or just PM your link to DrDon to add to your thread.

This is really a troubleshooting issue at the moment since there isn't enough info to place it as a "local reception" question (yet). DrDon can make that call if he wishes.
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post #6 of 17 Old 10-06-2015, 08:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi
I'm going to be there later this week and will make some pix and pinpoint the location. Very much appreciate this forum.
Thanks
Jim
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post #7 of 17 Old 10-10-2015, 09:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Waupaca Wis. 54981, trying to connect rooftop antenna

Hi all
Update on a previous post, hope I've got better info this time around. It's got a black box on it where the coax and flat wire antennas connect that says ChannelMaster on it. Don't know if that's the brand of the entire antenna.
I connect the antenna to my HDTV, select antenna/air for the reception, and scan for channels. Don't see a thing. I've connected a new indoor digital antenna - placed it in the open outdoors - and searched for channels and picked up a couple. But that's not a practical solution and Im sure the rooftop rig will provide more.
Im wondering if theres an issue with that black connector box - doesnt appear to have any damage, however, It appears to me that the flat wires running up the antenna are well connected.
I've got pix but need to figure out how to scale them down so I can upload them.
Suggestions welcome. And thank you!
Jim
here's my TV Fool report:
tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id%3d8e0369fd74979 e
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post #8 of 17 Old 10-10-2015, 10:52 AM
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Your stations are from the East with another market coming in from the NorthWest. I would start with the antenna pointed East. If the black box is a preamp it would be powered from the coax with the power supply near the TV see:
http://www.channelmaster.com/CM_4512...cm-4512796.htm
Without power a preamp becomes an attenuator. Posting a picture of the antenna would also be helpful.
John
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post #9 of 17 Old 10-10-2015, 01:20 PM - Thread Starter
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pix

Hi
Here are some pix. There is not a preamp unit inside the house, but it might have been disposed of years ago when cable seemed wonderful.
Thanks for the insights.
Jim
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post #10 of 17 Old 10-10-2015, 02:42 PM
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The box looks like a Channelmaster preamp. A wider angle shot showing the whole setup would be useful. It looks like you have maybe two VHF antennas and one good UHF antenna which is perhaps a CM4248. The 4248 is probably a little better that any UHF antenna available today so definitely hang on to it. You could try the power supply I in my link above but the amp is so old I would get a new one which will require a balun at the antenna because the new ones all have a coax input.
John
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post #11 of 17 Old 10-10-2015, 06:04 PM - Thread Starter
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checking a couple details

So checking. I would disconnect the black box - which does say channelmaster on it!
And then use the balun to connect the two wire types at that spot. And then use the new amp inside the house?
Thank you!
Jim
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post #12 of 17 Old 10-11-2015, 11:34 AM
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Preamps work best when placed near the antenna. A new preamp would go where the old one was. You would connect a balun to the antenna then run a short piece of coax between the preamp and antenna. Usually the power supply/inserter would be near the TV with another short piece of coax going to the TV. This might be a good preamp for you: http://www.walmart.com/ip/RCA-Antenn...ifier/14554631
It would allow using one of the VHF antennas on a separate input after you get the UHF working.
John
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post #13 of 17 Old 10-11-2015, 01:16 PM - Thread Starter
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thank you very much! Will give that a try.
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post #14 of 17 Old 10-12-2015, 10:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Balun recommendation?

Hi there
do you recommend any particular balun?
would this one work?
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...A1Z3I81XEZYGWA
Thank you

Last edited by jim n; 10-12-2015 at 11:14 AM. Reason: added info
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post #15 of 17 Old 10-12-2015, 12:44 PM
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That one looks like it is for indoor use. Look for one that says outdoor. It might come with a weather boot. Like this http://www.amazon.com/Channel-Master...0_SR160%2C160_
John
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post #16 of 17 Old 10-12-2015, 01:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Got it!
Thanks
Will let you know how it works out. Appreciate your insights.
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post #17 of 17 Old 10-19-2015, 09:48 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you!

Thanks for your great advice. I installed the RCA amplifier, and boom, got 10 channels clear as can be. Very much appreciate your help. It's been an interesting, educational and money saving experience!
Jim
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