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Local HDTV Info and Reception > Minneapolis, MN - OTA
Dan Otterdahl's Avatar Dan Otterdahl 10:39 AM 06-22-2008
Hello, can anyone tell me where I can go to find information on which HD channels should be available at my house? I live in Mayer, MN 55360. I'm just beginning to research an OTA HD antennae. Currently I get HD via Dish 622. I am an AV integrator, but I never deal with Dish or antennae... so I'm ignorant about it. Thanks for the help.

Dan

arxaw's Avatar arxaw 10:47 AM 06-22-2008
Best source is the local thread for your town. Find it here:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=453241
You can find out which channels are being used in your area for DTV and what antennas work best there.
primetimeguy's Avatar primetimeguy 11:33 AM 06-22-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Otterdahl View Post

Hello, can anyone tell me where I can go to find information on which HD channels should be available at my house? I live in Mayer, MN 55360. I'm just beginning to research an OTA HD antennae. Currently I get HD via Dish 622. I am an AV integrator, but I never deal with Dish or antennae... so I'm ignorant about it. Thanks for the help.

Dan

Check out hdtvtwincities.com

There is info about local OTA channels as well as a sticky thread about which antenna you may need.
Jim1348's Avatar Jim1348 12:24 PM 06-22-2008
Here is what Antenna Web shows......... http://www.antennaweb.org

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To enter a different address, click here.

Stations and Antenna Types

TV reception is determined by the size and type of antenna and the direction in which it is pointed. To determine the right antenna, use the color coded Antenna Type to select the channels that you wish to view. Antenna types are color coded according to the size and type of antenna needed for reception. The list is arranged in order of ease of reception, with the stations requiring the smallest multidirectional antenna at the top, to those requiring the largest directional antennas at the bottom.

Use the "Compass Orientation" listed below to point your antenna or rotor system for the channels you wish to receive. Please note that "Compass Orientation" is referenced to magnetic North.

The "Frequency Assignment" column is provided to facilitate custom antenna design for special circumstances.


Show All Stations Show Digital Stations Only Show Analog Stations Only


DTV Antenna
Type Call Sign Channel Network City, State Live
Date Compass
Heading Miles
From Frequency
Assignment
* yellow
uhf KPXM-DT 41.1 ION ST. CLOUD, MN 15° 34.6 40
* yellow
uhf KARE-DT 11.1 NBC MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 35
* yellow
uhf WCCO-DT 4.1 CBS MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 32
green
uhf WUCW 23 CW MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 23
green
uhf KPXM 41 ION ST. CLOUD, MN 15° 34.6 41
* green
uhf KSTC-DT 45.1 IND MINNEAPOLIS, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.1 45
* green
uhf KSTP-DT 35.1 ABC ST. PAUL, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.1 35
* green
uhf KMSP-DT 9.1 FOX MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.7 26
* green
uhf KSTP-DT 5.1 ABC ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.1 50
green
uhf KSTC 45 IND MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 45
* lt green
uhf KTCI-DT 26.1 PBS ST. PAUL, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.7 26
lt green
vhf KMSP 9 FOX MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.7 9
lt green
vhf KARE 11 NBC MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 11
* lt green
uhf KTCI-DT 17.1 PBS ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.7 16
lt green
uhf KTCI 17 PBS ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.7 17
* red
vhf KARE-DT 11.1 NBC MINNEAPOLIS, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.1 11
* red
uhf KTCA-DT 2.1 PBS ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.7 34
* red
uhf WFTC-DT 29.1 MNT MINNEAPOLIS, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.7 29
* red
uhf WFTC-DT 29.1 MNT MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.7 21
* red
uhf KSTC-DT 45.1 IND MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 44
red
uhf WFTC 29 MNT MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.7 29
blue
vhf KSTP 5 ABC ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.1 5
* blue
uhf WUCW-DT 23.1 CW MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 22
blue
vhf WCCO 4 CBS MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 4
blue
vhf KTCA 2 PBS ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.7 2
violet
vhf KEYC 12 CBS MANKATO, MN 199° 71.2 12
violet
uhf K58BS 58 TBN MINNEAPOLIS, MN 79° 31.5 58
Note:
The above listing is a conservative prediction of stations received. Depending on the specifics of your installation, you may be able to receive stations that do not appear in this list.
DTV Antenna
Type Call Sign Channel Network City, State Live
Date Compass
Heading Miles
From Frequency
Assignment
green
uhf WUCW 23 CW MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 23
green
uhf KPXM 41 ION ST. CLOUD, MN 15° 34.6 41
green
uhf KSTC 45 IND MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 45
lt green
vhf KMSP 9 FOX MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.7 9
lt green
vhf KARE 11 NBC MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 11
lt green
uhf KTCI 17 PBS ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.7 17
red
uhf WFTC 29 MNT MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.7 29
blue
vhf KSTP 5 ABC ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.1 5
blue
vhf WCCO 4 CBS MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 4
blue
vhf KTCA 2 PBS ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.7 2
violet
vhf KEYC 12 CBS MANKATO, MN 199° 71.2 12
violet
uhf K58BS 58 TBN MINNEAPOLIS, MN 79° 31.5 58
Note:
The above listing is a conservative prediction of stations received. Depending on the specifics of your installation, you may be able to receive stations that do not appear in this list.
DTV Antenna
Type Call Sign Channel Network City, State Live
Date Compass
Heading Miles
From Frequency
Assignment
* yellow
uhf KPXM-DT 41.1 ION ST. CLOUD, MN 15° 34.6 40
* yellow
uhf KARE-DT 11.1 NBC MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 35
* yellow
uhf WCCO-DT 4.1 CBS MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 32
* green
uhf KSTC-DT 45.1 IND MINNEAPOLIS, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.1 45
* green
uhf KSTP-DT 35.1 ABC ST. PAUL, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.1 35
* green
uhf KMSP-DT 9.1 FOX MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.7 26
* green
uhf KSTP-DT 5.1 ABC ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.1 50
* lt green
uhf KTCI-DT 26.1 PBS ST. PAUL, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.7 26
* lt green
uhf KTCI-DT 17.1 PBS ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.7 16
* red
vhf KARE-DT 11.1 NBC MINNEAPOLIS, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.1 11
* red
uhf KTCA-DT 2.1 PBS ST. PAUL, MN 72° 39.7 34
* red
uhf WFTC-DT 29.1 MNT MINNEAPOLIS, MN Feb 17, 2009 (post-transition) 72° 39.7 29
* red
uhf WFTC-DT 29.1 MNT MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.7 21
* red
uhf KSTC-DT 45.1 IND MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 44
* blue
uhf WUCW-DT 23.1 CW MINNEAPOLIS, MN 72° 39.1 22
dp70's Avatar dp70 04:56 PM 07-27-2008
I've been unable to receive WCCO-DT 4.1 OTA from Burnsville for at least 3 weeks now. I still see a signal, but the SNR is only about 10.5, less than the 16 required for my Sony DHG-HDD500 to receive it without breaking up. Has anyone else had trouble this month? It seems like there was a sudden change, since the SNR has been 25-28 for the past three years. No changes on my end to the antenna or equipment, no new construction nearby... not sure what it could be.
Jim1348's Avatar Jim1348 08:14 PM 07-27-2008
Mark (and the group),

I am in Rosemount and I get WCCO-DT 4.1 with a signal strength of 100 on my DISH 622 ATSC tuner. Are you nice and high up, like Heather Hills? What is your antenna and feedline?
criz's Avatar criz 08:13 AM 07-28-2008
Agreed, I'm in Brooklyn Park with a relatively clear view of the tips of the towers. I've noticed a significant drop in the signal quality as well. Happened sometime in the middle of June or July?
Syzygy's Avatar Syzygy 12:37 PM 07-28-2008
I just rechecked my OTA signal quality with my HD TiVo (soon to be replaced by a @#$% HR21). Channel 4-1 is the same as it was the last time I checked (11 Mar 2008). So were digital 5, 11, 23 and 45. These 4 digital channels are unwatchable: 29 (WFTC) and 41 (KPXM) were worse, while 17 (TPT2D) and 9 (KMSP) were much worse.

I'm in a little bit of a valley in central Burnsville.
jay427's Avatar jay427 01:46 PM 07-28-2008
Quote:


I just rechecked my OTA signal quality with my HD TiVo (soon to be replaced by a @#$% HR21). Channel 4-1 is the same as it was the last time I checked (11 Mar 2008). So were digital 5, 11, 23 and 45. These 4 digital channels are unwatchable: 29 (WFTC) and 41 (KPXM) were worse, while 17 (TPT2D) and 9 (KMSP) were much worse.

Syzygy

I don't want to highjack the thread but can I ask why you are getting rid of your Tivo HD? I'm looking at going that route for OTA.
ddingle's Avatar ddingle 02:05 PM 07-28-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Syzygy View Post

I just rechecked my OTA signal quality with my HD TiVo (soon to be replaced by a @#$% HR21). Channel 4-1 is the same as it was the last time I checked (11 Mar 2008). So were digital 5, 11, 23 and 45. These 4 digital channels are unwatchable: 29 (WFTC) and 41 (KPXM) were worse, while 17 (TPT2D) and 9 (KMSP) were much worse.

I'm in a little bit of a valley in central Burnsville.

We have found the AM21 and HR21 combination to be a nice improvement over the 10-250 HDTivos. Much better tuner on the AM21. Your 4.1 problems will go away. I actually prefer the HR21 to the Tivo software as well. Lots of updates in the last year or so has really fine tuned this product. Tivo is no longer way ahead of the pack. Lot's more HD channels with MPEG 4 too!!
Syzygy's Avatar Syzygy 05:33 PM 07-28-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by jay427 View Post

Syzygy

I don't want to highjack the thread but can I ask why you are getting rid of your Tivo HD? I'm looking at going that route for OTA.

Well, let's take this discussion over to one side of the room and talk quietly.

• Roughly 50 hi-def non-premium non-local channels. (I get only 7 now.)
• All the Mpls/St.Paul locals are available in HD from the MPEG-4 sats; I won't need OTA and I'll be able to get Fox and WB without dropouts.
• My HR10-250 has gotten less reliable lately because D* is changing their transmissions to help their own piece-of-crap boxes.
• I get to keep my HR10-250 'cause I paid for it. (I may use it elsewhere.)

I agree with ddingle: The HR21+AM21 combination pulls in digital locals much better than the HR10-250. It is reported that the AM21 tuner is even a little better than the one in the HR20. (But I don't think the AM21 could give me truly solid reception on Fox and WB; Fox's signal is circularly polarized and WB's is underpowered.)

Correction: Not all the Mpls/St.Paul locals are available in HD from the MPEG-4 sats; KTCA & KTCI (the PBS stations) are only SD.
jay427's Avatar jay427 06:19 AM 07-29-2008
Syzygy

Thanks for the reply, I see that you are now moving to Sat Service. I'm looking to get rid of all monthly fees so it looks like Tivo is the only option for myself.

Thanks again

Jay
obeone's Avatar obeone 12:39 PM 08-16-2008
My kid just moved from the left coast to Minneapolis, near the intersection of NE Central & Lowry. He rented a small apartment about 6.5 air miles from the Shoreview towers. I just sent him a Digital Stream DXT9950 converter box and a little 7 inch diameter UHF loop antenna with 6 feet of coax to use with his old analog TV. I tried this gear at my home before sending it and it worked great. I got a strong signal from all of the local digital channels with no fooling around at all. Since the distance to the towers and the terrain at my house and his apartment are almost identical, I expected good results. Wrong. He can't get a decent signal on any station. Watching the converter box signal strength meter, the signal bounces back and forth between 1 and 30 (on a scale of 0-100) even when the antenna is standing still.

Any ideas from viewers in this area who are forced to rely on just an indoor antenna will be appreciated.
dp70's Avatar dp70 04:31 PM 08-18-2008
I'm still unable to receive WCCO-DT (4-1) or WFTC-DT (UPN 29-1)... the SNR fell from 28+ in late June to 10.5 in early July for both stations and remains consistently at that level from day to day and regardless of the weather. Nothing has changed with my equipment or neighborhood. I emailed engineering for both stations and neither has responded.

Is anyone still seeing similar problems?
rrrrrrobert's Avatar rrrrrrobert 05:12 PM 08-18-2008
obeone -

I'm in south Minneapolis about 10 miles from the towers and every attempt with a loop antenna gave me horrible results. After a LOT of experimenting with the old antennas I had sitting around, I found what seemed to work best for me (for digital OTA) was straight, telescoping antennas (single or a "rabbit ears" pair), fully extended, placed horizontally, and perpendicular to the direction of the towers. (When I used a pair, they were approximately parallel, pointing the same direction, not opposite directions). In other words, flat on a shelf or table, near a window (but not pointing at the towers, rather, turned 90 degrees).

(I'd hazard a guess that the two parallel telescoped "ears" may work a bit like paired elements in a Yagi-Uda antenna, but I'm no antenna expert.)

That worked MUCH better than any loop, and I'm still using that type of set up on a kitchen TV, but it wasn't quite reliable enough on the main TV, so I got a Philips Silver Sensor antenna (fluctuates from about $20-25 at Amazon.com) and that is working great for me.

Mark -

I haven't noticed any change in 4.1 or 29.1 reception myself, but maybe digital 29 (actual 21) was interfering with analog 19 (low-power) or digital 23 (actual 22), and digital 4 (actual 32) was interfering with analog 29 or digital 2 and 11 (actual 34 and 35), requiring some transmitter adjustments. If that kind of interference has anything to do with it, it should get better in February when the the analog stations go away and there's more "room" for the digital stations, so they can broadcast at higher power.
obeone's Avatar obeone 06:40 PM 08-19-2008
Thanks you rrrrrrobert for your feedback.

I found a video clip on how to make a HDTV antenna on the web using coat hangers this weekend, built one and shipped it off to my kid to try. If this coat hanger antenna thing does not work, your rabbit ears idea will be "Plan C".

Best regards,

obeone
rrrrrrobert's Avatar rrrrrrobert 07:17 PM 09-06-2008
obeone-

Don't know if you'll be checking back here again, but if you do, I'm curious. . .

Is this the video. . .

http://www.metacafe.com/watch/762088...ought_amazing/
Same video at YouTube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWQhlmJTMzw

. . .and did it work?

Anyway, it didn't surprise me that this antenna (in the videos I linked to above) uses eight rabbit-ear-like V-shaped elements. Round loops just don't seem to work well for digital TV.

Unfortunately, TPT (PBS here in Minneapolis) has been running ads for months now that say, roughly, "some antennas are for VHF" (show rabbit ears), "some are for UHF" (show loop) "and some are for both" (show combo) ". . .most digital broadcasts are UHF."

This gives the impression that those old loops are what you need for digital, and in my experience, that's not helpful information, even for people close to the broadcasting towers.

- Bob
obeone's Avatar obeone 10:33 AM 09-07-2008
Hello rrrrrrobert,

Thanks for keeping tabs on this. The video web link you posted is the very same one I used to construct the antenna my kid has been testing the last 2 weeks.

So far the results have been disappointing. He's tried locating this antenna in no less than 16 locations around the apartment, in both vertical & horizontal orientations, and can only get 3 or 4 stations at best. These stations typically include PBS (17), FOX, WB , PAX and occasionally a choppy CBS. Of all the stations, the PAX broadcast from all the way in St. Cloud is the strongest, while he's have never captured a signal from ABC or NBC just 6 miles away. Go figure.

Yesterday, he tried propping the antenna in his north facing windows (the only windows available) at various angles (and with the window open) with no real improvement over anything else he's tried.

At this point I'm not sure what to do. Should we try some type of amplified antenna? I'm not sure. Some web sites recommend them, others do not. Maybe if we can find some old rabbit ears like you had rrrrrrobert.

Any other ideas would be appreciated.

-obeone
kyaj9's Avatar kyaj9 01:50 AM 09-12-2008
sorry if this has been asked before, but searches came up empty. anyways, can you guys tell me if it's possible to use a direct tv dish as an antenna for local ota HDTV channels? i don't have direct tv, but the house i bought has one installed on the roof.

if not, would a simple "rabbit ear" HDTV antenna work or do i actually need an outdoor HDTV antenna installed on roof?

lastly, would a deactivated satellite box, like the directtv h21 receiver, work for a ota HDTV tuner?
Jim1348's Avatar Jim1348 05:16 PM 09-12-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by kyaj9 View Post

sorry if this has been asked before, but searches came up empty. anyways, can you guys tell me if it's possible to use a direct tv dish as an antenna for local ota HDTV channels? i don't have direct tv, but the house i bought has one installed on the roof.

if not, would a simple "rabbit ear" HDTV antenna work or do i actually need an outdoor HDTV antenna installed on roof?

lastly, would a deactivated satellite box, like the directtv h21 receiver, work for a ota HDTV tuner?

It is certainly possible to use a Direct TV antenna for over the air reception, but it is unlikely you will get very good results.

Rabbit ears certainly do work, but it is likely you will get better performance with an outside antenna.

As far as the DirecTV H21, I don't think that it has an over the air ATSC tuner in it. I have more experience with Dish receivers. Some of those have (had?) a peculiarity like they needed to "see" a DISH TV satellite, even though it was not subscribed for service, for the ATSC tuner to work.

The more important question probably is how far you are from the transmitters. That, and experimenting, will help determine what antenna for you to select.
kyaj9's Avatar kyaj9 11:05 PM 09-16-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post

I
Rabbit ears certainly do work, but it is likely you will get better performance with an outside antenna.


The more important question probably is how far you are from the transmitters. That, and experimenting, will help determine what antenna for you to select.

i'm located not too far the transmitter. i would say about 15 to 20 miles only. if an outdoor antenna is what i need, do you guys have any suggestions?

thnx
Jim1348's Avatar Jim1348 06:49 AM 09-17-2008
I went with a Channel Master CM4228 antenna, but there are many choices out there. Take a look at these sites:

http://www.hdtvantennalabs.com/index.php

http://www.antennaweb.org/aw/welcome.aspx

http://www.hdtvantennalabs.com/revie...8-reviews.html

http://www.solidsignal.com/
leschwartz's Avatar leschwartz 10:20 AM 09-19-2008
TVFool.com lists KSTP (virt ch 5.1, real ch 50) at 1000 kW, and WFTC (virt ch 29.1, real ch 21, 8) at 831 kW. This morning I was told there were freezing issues with both KSTP & WFTC. I was also told that reception levels seemed generally lower for all stations across the board. Questions:

1) I'm assuming the KSTP and WFTC transmitters are on par with the others . . . does anyone have an idea as to why either of these two powerful stations would be giving me trouble?

2) It seems weird that the signal is significantly "lower" during the day. Is there something I'm missing here? (Are multipath problems worse during the day? Do these stations broadcast at power during daylight hours? Etc?)

thanks in advance,

Larry
Syzygy's Avatar Syzygy 11:29 AM 09-19-2008
For one thing, WFTCDT's signal is circularly polarized, to diminish the effects of multipath interference, but this inevitably reduces the reach of the signal. And an engineer at KSTP told me that UHF channels 50 and 44, which they were assigned, are very susceptible to multipath distortion. Especially 50.
jedifreak's Avatar jedifreak 09:56 AM 10-04-2008
I heard that channel 41 might be moving their transmitter to Shoreview -- can anyone confirm this?
Trip in VA's Avatar Trip in VA 10:08 AM 10-04-2008
They applied with the FCC to move there, but the FCC has yet to approve it.

- Trip
Runch Machine's Avatar Runch Machine 12:53 PM 10-04-2008
I've helped people with indoor reception and found the Terk model HDTVi by far to be the best. It's available at Amazon.com for $25.00. Give it a try, you won't be disappointed.
Runch Machine's Avatar Runch Machine 12:55 PM 10-04-2008
Has anyone heard that KTCI has applied to move from post analog shut off channel 26 to channel 38? Another PBS station in Duluth is also on 38 and is suggesting 25. Apparently KTCI won't be able to increase its power if it goes to 26. I am curious as to an update on this.
Trip in VA's Avatar Trip in VA 01:10 PM 10-04-2008
The last comment back from KTCI in response to WDSE's comment is that the FCC said that no counterproposals would be accepted, and so KTCI should be granted channel 38.

Basically, what happened is that KTCI wanted to boost their signal strength, and couldn't do so on channel 16. They saw that KMSP was relocating from channel 26 to channel 9, and thus formed a deal to reuse the KMSP antenna and equipment. However, the FCC decided that KTCI on channel 26 would now have to offer full protection to WHWC-DT in Wisconsin on channel 27, which would have capped their power at the same level they had already been operating on channel 16.

To alleviate this, KTCI has asked to be relocated to channel 38. Channel 38 is currently being used in Duluth by WDSE-DT who is relocating back to channel 8 next year. WDSE-DT filed an opposition to KTCI's request, saying they want to reuse the channel 38 equipment to launch a secondary PBS station in Superior WI, which would let them break up their signal like KTCI does now (HD on one, multicast on the other). WDSE offered channels 23, 24, and 25 as possible alternatives to KTCI.

KTCI pointed to FCC rules that said they wouldn't allow counterproposals or attempts to create new allocations, and wants DT-38 anyway.

http://www.rabbitears.info/chchg.php

This page on my website links to all relevant documents involving channel changes. Scroll down a little bit and you'll find KTCI highlighted in orange, and there are links underneath that orange highlighted row which are PDFs of every filing made in this case. Just in case you wanted even more details. =)

- Trip
janasman's Avatar janasman 09:46 AM 10-18-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by obeone View Post

Hello rrrrrrobert,

Thanks for keeping tabs on this. The video web link you posted is the very same one I used to construct the antenna my kid has been testing the last 2 weeks.

So far the results have been disappointing. He's tried locating this antenna in no less than 16 locations around the apartment, in both vertical & horizontal orientations, and can only get 3 or 4 stations at best. These stations typically include PBS (17), FOX, WB , PAX and occasionally a choppy CBS. Of all the stations, the PAX broadcast from all the way in St. Cloud is the strongest, while he's have never captured a signal from ABC or NBC just 6 miles away. Go figure.

Yesterday, he tried propping the antenna in his north facing windows (the only windows available) at various angles (and with the window open) with no real improvement over anything else he's tried.

At this point I'm not sure what to do. Should we try some type of amplified antenna? I'm not sure. Some web sites recommend them, others do not. Maybe if we can find some old rabbit ears like you had rrrrrrobert.

Any other ideas would be appreciated.

-obeone

I made this exact same antenna and had stunning results!! I live over in New Richmond, WI and get a very strong signal on all the Twin Cities channels. My question to you is: At the end when you attached the two longer wires to make the loops, did you insulate between them when you crossed them over each other?? It doesn't say to do this in the video but you are supposed to. If you haven't tried that, try it and report back with the results. I also put a 24" x 24" stainless steel sheet of metal behind it so that is acts like a parabolic reflector. I think that helped a lot also.
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