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EV's Recommended & Top Rated DTV Indoor UHF/VHF Set Top Antenna Review Round-Up Guide - Page 6

post #151 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Did you try the old RE&Loop at the "Sweet Spot" you found. You said that the PHTV3 was only a tad bit better than the PHTV3 at its original location, until you lifted it with phonebooks. This will give an indication on whether its the antenna or the "sweet spot" that is producing better results.

Indeed, YMMV seems to be the story with indoor antennas.

I did try our old RCA ANT120b in the "sweet spot." It locks in the local CBS, FOX, ABC, and NBC slightly better than it did pre-phone books, but PBS is still all over the place. The PHDTV3 shows higher signal strength across the board on all channels (about 5-15% of the signal meter on our Zenith DTT900), but more important for me is that PBS and it's 3 subchannels comes in solid.

Also, the PHDTV3 pulls in the Ion affiliate at about 60% strength--very watchable, especially at night--whereas the rabbit ear/loop combo wasn't doing the job at 30%.

So, yeah, the sweet spot helps, but ultimately the PHDTV3 turned out to be the right antenna for us. We would've bought a different silver sensor style antenna, but they don't sell them in any store locally.
post #152 of 3314
Thread Starter 
As I said before, glad you found a solution that works for you, fajita. Thanks for the extra testing. Your comments about your trial and error journey will be valued by others reading this thread in the future. I think we've got one of the best Indoor Antenna threads on the web, right now, if not the best. Thanks to all of the great contributors.
post #153 of 3314
Okay, I have to ask. What the heck does YMMV mean?
post #154 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Your Mileage May Vary


Let me introduce you to the Urban Dictionary, Rick.

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=ymmv
post #155 of 3314
By the way, that 4-pronged, strange looking antenna is a Smart Antenna.
post #156 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Dont I feel like a Dumb Arse. LOL!
post #157 of 3314
If you can find the RCA ANT110 at a local store, it would be very interesting to make a direct shoot-out comparison against the ANT111. I've used both, my results aren't scientific but seems like the cheaper ANT110 (with a big 5" round UHF loop) had slightly better gain than the ANT111. But could the ANT111's rectangular UHF loop be more stable against certain types of interference?

My preferred antenna at this time is the Philips MANT510 - but to be honest, a couple of channels I could receive with the RCA ANT110, I can't quite get with the MANT510. The Philips does have a decent flat-panel UHF aerial and appears to have a well-designed low-noise amplifier, it's more stable than many.

It might be fun to also include the Philips SDV2210/17 in a comparison test. It is one of the better-looking indoor antennas and, while probably not the absolute best performer, seems to be competent. I'll put it this way: my absolute best local signal (a PBS station) came in at 95% signal strength using this $10 aerial - the best signal strength I've ever gotten here except for using an outdoor Channel Master 4221. It's not a bad choice; it's roughly tied with the Radio Shack 15-1868 (another aerial in my collection).

I have a couple of older, no-longer-in-production antennas which I've used in the past (which I haven't donated yet). These were acquired used. I may test these out again and write some short reviews before donating them to a thrift store. These are:

Magnavox MANT300 (amplified)
Radio Shack ATV 1000 (amplified)
Radio Shack 15-1857 (non amplified)
Recoton amplified

None of these are best-in-breed but I wanted to snap a digital picture of each and write a short review on each so the information would be available.
post #158 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Im looking forward to your reviews seatacboy.

Philips SDV2210/17 added to shootout.

Quote:


If you can find the RCA ANT110 at a local store, it would be very interesting to make a direct shoot-out comparison against the ANT111. I've used both, my results aren't scientific but seems like the cheaper ANT110 (with a big 5" round UHF loop) had slightly better gain than the ANT111. But could the ANT111's rectangular UHF loop be more stable against certain types of interference?

I think maybe the larger loop shifts the gain curve down lower in spectrum.....thus increasing gain in the meat of the Television UHF spectrum.
post #159 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Checked the Family Dollar today, and they had the RCA ANT108, which is similar to the RCA ANT110 mentioned in the list.

Also, the Jensen TV-931 came in today.

How much was the ANT108 selling for? Did you buy one?
post #160 of 3314
Thread Starter 
$5, no, but I probably will, next time Im by there.

I want to check Target and Dollar General too.
post #161 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

I think maybe the larger loop shifts the gain curve down lower in spectrum.....thus increasing gain in the meat of the Television UHF spectrum.

But then again, the RCA111 is flattened out movign towards a bowtie shape. I dont know.
post #162 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

http://www.channelmasterintl.com/antennas_indoor.html
This one looks interesting....CM 4040

In February 2009, a fair number of stations are switching their ATSC transmitters to High-VHF. Channel Master's new introduction of a UHF-only aerial is strange indeed.
post #163 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Marking this here. Blurb from the web.

Quote:


Another series of posts by Zed showed that when he cracked open a TD Lacrosse it was very similar to a DB-2 under its plastic housing.

http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=63294
post #164 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by seatacboy View Post

Channel Master's new introduction of a UHF-only aerial is strange indeed.

Yeah, I kind of thought that too. It seems a little late in the game, but better late than never I guess. I'm sure they're just trying to cash in on the success of the Silver Sensor. Channel Master has a better reputation than Philips when it comes to quality, so I'm sure they are banking on people going for the Channel Master if given the choice between the two.

As far as it being UHF only, most of the so-called HDTV antennas these days are UHF only. I assume that means that most markets must be UHF only. I've always assumed that most places would have both VHF and UHF, but who knows.

Anyway, it's pretty cheap to pick up a pair of rabbit ears if VHF reception is needed. I have to admit that when I was first looking at antennas, I wanted an all-in-one unit; but actually, I've found it more convenient to have separate VHF and UHF antennas. I prefer being able to focus each antenna independently. I realize that's not for everyone, but it's nice to have the option.
post #165 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Anybody have any experience with the Channel Master lineup of indoor antennas?

Fry's sells the 4020 and 4030. I've not seen any reviews of these indoor antennas, or of the more basic 3803 and 4000.
post #166 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick313 View Post

As far as it being UHF only, most of the so-called HDTV antennas these days are UHF only. I assume that means that most markets must be UHF only. I've always assumed that most places would have both VHF and UHF, but who knows.

The original FCC game plan was for all DTV stations to be on UHF. However, the final channel allocations mean that in most major media markets, at least one major station will be migrating back to an upper UHF frequency. In my local DMA, here are the stations flash-cutting to DTV from their current analog channel on 02/17/09:

KCTS analog 9/digital 41 - becomes digital RF 9
KSTW analog 11/digital 36 - becomes digital RF 11
KCPQ analog 13/digital 18 - becomes digital RF 13

When Philips introduced their Amplified version of the Silver Sensor (PHDTV3), they included VHF rabbit ears in anticipation of this.

Channel Master's quality is generally perceived as being more consistent than Philips, though many CM products are now manufactured overseas rather than in the States.
post #167 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by seatacboy View Post

In February 2009, a fair number of stations are switching their ATSC transmitters to High-VHF. Channel Master's new introduction of a UHF-only aerial is strange indeed.

Many so-called UHF antennas will also receive high band VHF.
post #168 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Channel Master's indoor stuff is PCT International. You can find most of the same indoor antennas under the PCT badge.

Not related to the above.....Ace Hardware has a couple of units.
post #169 of 3314
Topic stuck.
post #170 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Yahoooo!

Thanks Ken!
post #171 of 3314
Congrats EV. Tonight's posts inspired another indoor reception possibility. Most old televisions only have an antenna in and a video/audio in. If logistics were to require it, two converter boxes could be used, one to get VHF-hi and the other UHF. Plug VHF into the antenna in, and UHF into the video/audio in.
One of my Silver Sensors is definitely not going away at the transition now. The old rabbit ears may not go either.
post #172 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

Topic stuck.

Congratulations EV!

New question: Best Buy and Wal*Mart are both selling a flat-panel RCA ANT1500 HDTV Indoor Antenna. Besides the huge price difference, are Best Buy and Wal*Mart selling different versions of this product?

Best Buy's RCA ANT1500
Wal*Mart's RCA ANT1500X

At Best Buy:
Model: ANT1500
Product Height 14-7/10"
Product Width 10-3/4"
Product Weight 2.1 lbs.
SKU: 8817328
Our Price: $59.99

At Wal*Mart
Model No.: ANT1500X
Product in Inches (L x W x H): 11.0 x 0.5 x 10.0
Shipping Weight (in pounds): 1.8
Wal-Mart No.: 000515633
Price: $29.97
post #173 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Couldnt have done it without you and several other great posters.


Interesting.

[scratches head]

The larger the antenna the better as they say. They seem really popular.

Ill look into it, when I get a chance. Ill try to pick one up....

BTW, the empty shelf at WM was priced $49.
post #174 of 3314
I may not have to try two converters. All of my stations are broadcasting from the same direction, but if stations are broadcasting from different directions, and one has the ability to place different antennas towards them, it might be worthwhile. This would keep the cable runs from the antenna to the tuner at a minimum. If someone were to seek only one VHF-hi channel, the converter could even be placed in the attic.
post #175 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Sorry about that deltaguy. I deleted that post. I was gonna repost something later, but you were too quick for me.


Great idea!
post #176 of 3314
No problem.
post #177 of 3314
Oh I forgot, if anyone feels that they have to have a VHF-UHF antenna for their chances of indoor reception, not true. An antenna for each is a possibility. Choosing a combination antenna may yield worse reception than choosing one antenna for each.

This evening, I watched baseball broadcast from 55 miles away. It was on analog channel 36. (-95db, one edge) Rabbit ears beat a Silver Sensor for reception, they always do.
post #178 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeVelocity View Post

Radio Shack 15-1892 with Remote - "The UFO"



This one, affectionately known as "The UFO," is an interesting antenna. Its automated, you can set it to move within its UFO disc, to adjust the antenna for individual stations. Can be really handy for those who are fairly close to broadcast towers that are not all in one direction. Comes with a remote to tune the antenna from the chair, to preset channel positions. UHF only. Amplified.

Wow. I bought this a week ago, and let me tell you: it's an answer to a prayer. Works better than anything I've tried to date. Was even able to successfully split the signal to my normally stubborn HD tuner card and know what I was seeing on the TV was exactly the same being recorded to the hard drive. Yeah, it looks a bit like the starship Enterprise, but I like Star Trek!

It was a nightmare prior to this antenna....in spite of nearly all the locals being in one general location (approx 15 miles away).
post #179 of 3314
Thread Starter 
Looks like youve lost your nacelles/warp drives.

:thumbs up

That unit is also much larger in real life than I imagined it from pictures, most antennas are smaller than imagined from pictures. Looks like a giant "Mushroom." Very cool looking.

Glad it worked out for you. Thanks for the input.
post #180 of 3314
Thread Starter 
seatac,

Audiovox press release...

Quote:


Rounding out the line is the RCA ANT1500, a flat multi-directional antenna whose patented dual-plane design provides consumers with more antenna in less space. Designed to be hung on the wall, rest on a stand or lie flat on a shelf, the 10.4-inch square, 0.78 inch-thin antenna virtually disappears in a room. The ANT1500’s patented design consistently outperforms traditional antenna designs when receiving signals across the VHF and UHF bands.

The RCA ANT1500 will be available in spring at a suggested retail price of $49.99.

I didnt know that RCA was an Audiovox company/brand, I thought they were owned by Thompson. [scratches head] Maybe Thompson owns Audiovox too?

edit: My guess is that the WM version lacks some extras, such as mounting hardware or a stand, accounting for its lower weight and smaller box. A picture frame holder seems like it would work for a stand though.

Oh and I picked up one at WM today, at a store accross town.
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