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EV's Recommended & Top Rated DTV Indoor UHF/VHF Set Top Antenna Review Round-Up Guide - Page 102

post #3031 of 3314
So far I have tried several antennas in my location. A RS 1892 UFO which did pick up all of my locals but did not help with multipath. A DB2 which also did poor with multipath. The newest RS amplified indoor antenna-similiar to the UFO. No model number just a part number. Pretty close to the UFO in performance. The thing I did not like about both was not knowing the direction in relationship to the 1-12 position numbers. The silver sensor is by far the best indoor antenna. Hands down. It really is quite impressive. I am able to get 100% reception on all my locals.
post #3032 of 3314
If anyone is interested in any of these antennas except the silver sensor. they are for sale. I also have the 2bay attached to a paper towel holder which works great. The author of this thread had different results but that is typical of what I have seen. Each location is unique to digital reception. At my last location, the silver sensor was a bust. Just did not get rid of it and pulled it out of storage. PM if you are interested.
post #3033 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by theroys88 View Post

If anyone is interested in any of these antennas except the silver sensor. they are for sale. I also have the 2bay attached to a paper towel holder which works great. The author of this thread had different results but that is typical of what I have seen. Each location is unique to digital reception. At my last location, the silver sensor was a bust. Just did not get rid of it and pulled it out of storage. PM if you are interested.

I have the Amplified version made by AudioVox/Terk HDTVa.... it comes with the "log periodic" flying wings for UHF and some massive rabbit ears and amplifier. I am very happy. It is like the Silver Sensor, but the SS is not amplified and is UHF only I recall. I have unplugged the Terk HDTVa amplified and it's still works for the main stations 20 miles away, but it does need the amplifier. I can image the Silver Sensor is good for UHF 25 miles (depending)? Note the Terk HDTVi is NOT amplified, so if you want a good indoor antenna, the Terk indoor antenna HDTVa is a good one. Of course no indoor antenna is as good as outdoor. I get stations 50 miles out with the Terk HDTVa.

However I just recently bought a cheap China made HDTV rotor antenna on iPay.... I'll let you all know how it compares. The biggest down side of the Terk is a place to put it. I don't really want to see it. Also I can't aim it at one station (because of a wall and lack of perch to sit it upon. Most stations are for the most part all in one direction.

This cheap antenna is in route right now.. I got the top one. It has a little more gain (at what Freq not sure). It has one or two more elements. Any experience with either?



Reading what little there is, people say they "WORK". The biggest complaint is some parts being made of plastic, may be will not weather well? It would be fine for the attic, which is my intent. The other issue is the rotor, you don't know the direction. It controller is just two buttons, turn CW or CCW. If you can't see the antenna, you don't know the direction. With digital, unlike analog, there is some delay to processes the signal. It rotates pretty fast. Not sure if this will be an issue for me. I am thinking I will mostly have it parked and only need to move it for two stations. However with this antenna I think I will get more stations, requiring more aiming.

Terk HDTVa verses China HDTV Rotor Antenna to come. If the china antenna works it will go in the attic. I will sell the Terk or use it for another TV>
post #3034 of 3314
Well I got WA980TG and it works but a few comments:




1) the antenna has a coaxial that is attached permanently and terminates in a plug that goes into the "controller".... but it's not a F-connector... So to extend the cable will be an issue until I figure out what kind of plug it is (kind of like a RCA but NOT!).

2) It is smaller than I thought but it went together well.
  • 23" long
    18" tall
    33" wide (vhf dipole)
    13" width (smaller elements)

3) The bummer is I think I got a bad controller/rotor? The rotor works; I expected it to be ambiguous since it just rotates 359 and stops and goes back the the other way to the other stop. Well fair enough, you don't know the exact direction. The bummer part is the two buttons that rotate CW or CCW don't seem to work or their function sometimes is confusing... where both buttons will make it go CCW for example. In fact it likes to go CCW more than CW. Some times it does nothing when I push either button. Occasionally it moves on it's own (I think having it too close to the TV might cause that; there is a note to keep it away from the TV). I have seen videos on YoutTube showing the rotor operation, and this is not normal. Too bad. eBay is good. I could return it. May be they will give me a discount off my big $26. It does not weigh much.... figure it will cost about $6 to return it. I have seen youtube videos and this is not the norm... but it's China QC I suppose.

4) It is directional but apparently receives FANTASTIC off the sides? I don't know why but it just does. For simplification of discussion most of my stations are East of me, and are the strongest. The next batch are West, they are a little weaker except for one, PBS, very strong. The one odd ball of interested in is to the North-NE. If I aim at the station North-NE (which is weaker) I pretty much get all the stations East and West.... except one of the weaker ones West. Ironically Turing the antenna West doesn't help, but turning it North (so the side is facing the station works for that station. It could be because the antenna is on a stand, back yard, close to the house. May be it's multi-path reflection?

5) I have serious doubts about putting this in the attic, not knowing the direction it's facing, flaky operation (works does not work). Unlike Analog where you could rotate until the picture came in and stop does not work with digital, because digital takes time to process and lock on.

6) The little amplifier controller gets hot. One thing I don't like is having to have the POWER amplifier and controller that gets hot. You can turn it off when not in use, but getting a bigger more efficient antenna that does not need an amplifier is better I think, unless you are in a fringe area and have multi TV and need an amplifier. I am sure the commercial in-line amplifiers are not going to get hot like this WA980TG china made deal. (To be fair the Terk HDTVa is made in china, but it's amplifier is a very small in-line afair and is cool to touch).

7) The Terk HDTVa indoor antenna works about the same if I aim it. I highly recommend the Terk HDTVa (not the HDTVi) for a good indoor antenna. My guess is the HDTVa outside side by side with the WA980TG will match it. From what A vs B comparison I have done, the Terk HDTVa inside has a tad less signal than the WA980TG outside and aimed. I must say when the the WA980TG on my strong stations East (about 20 miles) it pegs the strength meter on the Sony. The TV card SNR is pushing 30. This week end I might take the Terk HDTVa outside and compare the two. I have some RG6 and coupler to extend it the HDTVa coaxial, plus power outlets outside.

The best deal is get a good "Channel Master" or "Antenna Direct" (in UHF or VHF flavor needed), a real rotor with the cardinal headings you can set exactly. However for $26 it is not bad. Frankly with it in one direction it does what I need.... It is kind of like a three way antenna Front, Sides, which ironically or dumb luck works for me. If the rotor was working as expected (I think I have a bum one) I would be happy for what it is. If you can put the antenna so you can see it, then it would "work". I am thinking it's a fancy indoor antenna. Put it in a walk in closet, however it does a little better outside than in of course. I have tried both, but don't think this can take extreme weather for more than a year or two? Right now it's in the living room near the front window. It works but not for a permanent outdoor deal (attic OK)..... I figure a real rotor, antenna, cables, hardware will be about $200. Very tempting at under $30. It was fun to play with, might make a nice FM radio antenna... as it seemed to do well there... but again a dedicated FM Yagi would likely outperform it.


UPDATE EDIT:
Well I sent it back and they gave me a full refund including the return shipping..... I recommend Hootoodeal on eBay if you want to try it.

IT WAS NOT A BAD ANTENNA.... There was something wrong with this ones rotor. It was a decent antenna for reception, but not any better than the HDTVa Terk when I move it around in the house for optimal direction...... However I wanted a quantum leap and this was not it. I would have kept it for FM, which it did pretty well at, but the rotor was squirrelly, moved by it self.

If you want the real deal I recommend you buy the VHF or UHF antenna of choice and a REAL rotor. There is a single coaxial rotor (no rotor wire) on the market, that you can set to a specific direction.... It is not too much money. Also you can by separate amplifier if you need a little boost.... it will all cost way more than $30, but it will give you max range....



As requested the stations. The LP ones that don't list a Virt Channel not sure
about. I get some stations that I am not sure about, most likely LP ones.

Furthest or lowest signal I get (according to this est) 48.1 MyNC, comes in nicely.
16.1 ION, once but was not reliable. I just don't have a good unobstructed shot at
stations to the NW from inside my house, especially where the TV is. I already get
PBS and ION in other directions which are clear, so no worries.

With the Terk HDTVa I get most stations with antenna at about 230 degrees,
including channel 48.1 and the main near bunch at 122-124 degrees To get
47.1 ION at 72 degrees I have to aim it more or less at it.

post #3035 of 3314
How can I tell if coaxial cable up to par? I have 75 ohm cable from the cable company... are there any other markings I should be looking for?

Thanks.
post #3036 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmsnyc View Post

How can I tell if coaxial cable up to par? I have 75 ohm cable from the cable company... are there any other markings I should be looking for? Thanks.

Not really about the HDTV antenna round up, but you can't. If there is no marking and you have no history you don't know. It could be 50 ohm or 75 ohm. Chance is it's 75 ohm. Up to par? There is no free lunch you have to pay for high quality RG6.... most of the stuff sold to consumers is pretty poor quality. In short runs of say less than 30 to 50 feet it does not matter too much. However the better quality stuff will have less attenuation of signal, even cheap stuff works. It just depends on what you want to spend.

If it high quality it will have markings. If it has nothing assume it is crap.
post #3037 of 3314
gmcjetpilot, without a TVFool report for your location that shows how much signal is "in the air" for the antennas to pick up, we really can't tell much about the antennas you are testing. Please post the URL, not just a screen grab.

While I'm at it, whether the HDTVi or the HDTVa is a better solution depends on how much signal is available. People living only a few miles from transmitters have had disasterous results with the a version because the amplifier was totally overloaded.
post #3038 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by gmcjetpilot View Post

Not really about the HDTV antenna round up, but you can't. If there is no marking and you have no history you don't know. It could be 50 ohm or 75 ohm. Chance is it's 75 ohm. Up to par? There is no free lunch you have to pay for high quality RG6.... most of the stuff sold to consumers is pretty poor quality. In short runs of say less than 30 to 50 feet it does not matter too much. However the better quality stuff will have less attenuation of signal, even cheap stuff works. It just depends on what you want to spend.

If it high quality it will have markings. If it has nothing assume it is crap.

so basically if its rg59, its crap but rg6 is fine? I have cable from Time Warner, with E86432, googling shows Belden rg6

i had some 25' coaxial that are really old with rg59 that was carrying my antenna signal - it might have been fine but I am going to use the Time Warner cable (no pun intended) instead
post #3039 of 3314
hey Escape Velocity, great thread. However, 102 pages? LOL.

I managed to get through the first several and it's clear you and some of the regs here know your stuff. I noticed that you periodically had a ranking of preferred indoor antennas but I don't see anything like this in the last several pages.

Could you update your rankings please? Perhaps by effectiveness and/or value and any other important variables.

Anyone else that can help in this regard... much appreciated. Cheers.
post #3040 of 3314
I've done a little more research and I'm surprised to see you prefer the RS 1880 over the CM 4220 and DB2 (both unamped indoors). Seriously?
post #3041 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmsnyc View Post

so basically if its rg59, its crap but rg6 is fine?

All general statements are false, including this one ...

There is RG6 that is worse than RG59 ... but in general, losses are lower and shielding is better with RG6. Both are nominally 75 ohm characteristic impedance.

Just for grins, I went to Belden's website and looked at their appropriate cables. I picked the single 700 MHz figure as that is near the top of cable TV.

The Belden 59 products have 700 MHz loss (per 100 meters) ranging from 23 to 38 dB ... that's a difference in power loss of about 35:1 ... yeah ...

Their 6 product line varies from 17.4 to 26.6. So some 59 is better than some 6 ... from a normally accepted VERY GOOD manufacturer.

(then you can look at the RG11 and find these in the 10-15 dB loss ...)

It is my understanding, never proven, that some of the RG6 is very bad, worse than most RG59. Get product made for the cable companies or made by the major manufacturers ... Times, Belden, CommScope are just 3 that come to mind.

And remember ... TINSTAAFL.
post #3042 of 3314
Any review on the CM4040 ?
Would be interested on how it compares with the ZSS and the Phillips SS. It looks like the exact antenna as the Supersonic SC602.
http://www.supersonicinc.com/index.c...ctID/3,3877325

I imported a dozen CM4040 and so far they pick up DTV signals better in condos and apartments that do not have LOS with the transmitting towers by 2-3 channels more compared to a rabbit ear/UHF loop antenna.
post #3043 of 3314
Is this antenna any good? I am in the north shore of Lake Ontario. Will this pick up channels from Buffalo and Toronto/Rochester?
post #3044 of 3314
My grandma lives on the first floor of an apartment complex and I'm looking for the best indoor antenna. Size can be up to 2 feet by 2 feet.

The channel that she cares most about is the Chinese channel, 30.3. I'm not sure if that's WNVC-DT or WNVT-DT. I've attached the tvfool.

Any suggestions?
LL
post #3045 of 3314
You need to be careful to not overload the TV's tuner. A simple UHF loop with rabbit ears should suffice. She should not have any trouble picking up real channel 24 that carries the sub channel you are looking for.
post #3046 of 3314
Do you know what the best UHF loop with rabbit ears would be? That would be better than the Channel Master 4220 and 4221 and DB2/DB4?
post #3047 of 3314
Many people with a similar situation like the Radio Shack Catalog #: 15-1874:
www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2103077

What EV said to you in Dec of '08:
www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=15379998#post15379998 post 1142

The antennas that you listed are UHF antennas, but they might work for 7 & 9; their sharp wires are a safety hazard.

It might be necessary to try different locations in the apartment for the antenna, in which case you might want to extend the coax with an F-81 coupler and another length of RG6.
post #3048 of 3314
I have a Terk Indoor HDTVa VHF/UHF antenna.

If I split the cable and run one to an FM radio would that work to improve radio reception or would that just interfere with my tv signals?
post #3049 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmsnyc View Post

I have a Terk Indoor HDTVa VHF/UHF antenna.

If I split the cable and run one to an FM radio would that work to improve radio reception or would that just interfere with my tv signals?

It would either 1) work or 2) not work.

Give it a try and see.
post #3050 of 3314
You're better off using a separate antenna for the FM Radio since a splitter will
lose about 4 dB of signal strength going to the TV and the FM Radio.

You could use another set of Rabbit Ears, with each extended to about 30-in.
Or buy/build an FM Dipole Antenna: http://www.wfu.edu/~matthews/misc/dipole.html
http://www.amazon.com/Parts-Express-.../dp/B000M9EREE
http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...ductId=2062691

The Terk, as well as the above antennas have bi-directional patterns, so
they have NULLS towards the line of the antenna. A Monopole antenna
(e.g. an old-school car antenna) does not have this problem, although it
has slightly lower Gain. You can make your own by simply cutting off a
piece of wire 30-in long, strip the insulation off of one end and poke it into
the center hole of the coax input on the FM Radio. Hang it VERTICALLY.

If you want to locate this antenna away from the FM Radio for better
signal pickup (higher is usually better), you could run a coax to the
desired location and connect via a back-to-back coax adapter.

Keep antennas away from electronics, and as always: Location, Location, Location
post #3051 of 3314
I am thinking about getting a new HD TV and selling my old rear projection HD tv to my aunt and uncle. They however are not going to spend extra money each month in order to upgrade to digital cable. Is this what they would need to get NBC,CBS,ABC, and, Fox via over the air HD reception? http://www.amazon.com/Terk-Amplified...2646427&sr=1-1

Would they need anything else besides that? Lastly, my HD tv is older and has only 1 HDMI input. Does that antennae hook up into the hdmi input or the input where a direct cable line would hook in?
post #3052 of 3314
To determine signal strengths, enter their location into www.tvfool.com and then copy/paste
the results URL (e.g. http://......) into a post in this thread.

It also helps to know whether they are in a house or an apartment complex.
post #3053 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by gmcjetpilot View Post

... I have unplugged the Terk HDTVa amplified and it's still works for the main stations 20 miles away, but it does need the amplifier.

Note that the Terk HDTVa directions tell you not to unplug the power. It has a toggle on/off switch.
post #3054 of 3314
Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

To determine signal strengths, enter their location into www.tvfool.com and then copy/paste
the results URL (e.g. http://......) into a post in this thread.

It also helps to know whether they are in a house or an apartment complex.

They own their own house.
post #3055 of 3314
I didn't know how high the antenna would be so I left it blank. It would be an in-door one that just sits on top or near their tv if that helps.


Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

To determine signal strengths, enter their location into www.tvfool.com and then copy/paste
the results URL (e.g. http://......) into a post in this thread.

It also helps to know whether they are in a house or an apartment complex.



41.351013,-81.606741 antenna height: ft (above ground level)

More information and coverage maps can be viewed by clicking on the radio button next to the transmitters below. For more information about the numbers and what they mean, please see our Signal Analysis FAQ.
Display options: Current Pending Both Show lines pointing to each transmitter
Red = Analog, Green = Digital, Thick lines = stronger signal
Overlays off
Predicted Channel Availability (Current)
Analog Digital
Callsign Chan Network Dist
(mi) Path NM
(dB)
WXOX-LP 6 11.2 LOS 42.5
W35AX 35 5.1 LOS 40.1
WCDN-LP 53 5.1 LOS 33.6
WAKN-LP 11 19.8 2Edge 13.4
WAOH-LP 29 RTV 21.3 2Edge 12.9
W51BI 51 18.0 2Edge 10.0
WRAP-CA 32 9.1 1Edge -6.2

Callsign Chan Network Dist
(mi) Path NM
(dB)
WKYC-DT 17 (3.1) NBC 4.9 LOS 76.1
WQHS-DT 34 (61.1) Uni 5.4 LOS 72.3
WVIZ-DT 26 (25.1) PBS 4.9 LOS 67.4
WBNX-TV 30 (55.1) CW 5.1 LOS 67.0
WEWS-TV 15 (5.1) ABC 6.0 LOS 64.7
WOIO-DT 10 (19.1) CBS 5.2 LOS 64.4
WUAB-DT 28 (43.1) MyN 6.2 LOS 58.0
WJW-DT 8 (8.1) Fox 5.7 LOS 55.8
WCDN-LD 7 5.1 LOS 49.4
WRAP-CA 32 (32.1) 11.3 LOS 48.9
WVPX-DT 23 (23.1) ION 19.8 2Edge 37.1
WDLI-TV 49 (17.1) Ind 20.4 2Edge 36.4
WRLM 47 (67.1) 21.9 2Edge 34.6
WEAO -- 50 (49.1) PBS 18.6 1Edge 30.6
WOIO 24 CBS 19.8 2Edge 20.3
W51BI 51 (51.1) 18.0 2Edge 14.5
WNEO-DT 45 (45.1) PBS 47.5 2Edge 4.7
WKBN-TV 41 CBS 54.1 2Edge 4.3
WFMJ-DT 20 (21.1) NBC 53.7 2Edge -4.8
WYTV -- 36 (33.1) ABC 54.4 2Edge -12.9
WIVM-LD -- 39 (52.1) 37.5 2Edge -13.9
WGGN-DT 42 (52.1) Ind 48.0 2Edge -14.9
W63CT 38 (63.1) 37.4 2Edge -18.6

A icon next to a station's callsign means a coverage map is available for this transmitter.
Background color Estimated signal strength
Green An indoor "set-top" antenna is probably sufficient to pick up these channels
Yellow An attic-mounted antenna is probably needed to pick up channels at this level and above
Red A roof-mounted antenna is probably needed to pick up channels at this level and above
Grey These channels are very weak and will most likely require extreme measures to try and pick them up


About the signal strengths and coverage overlays

- They DO take into account the transmitter power, frequency, antenna pattern, and height
- They DO account for propagation losses due to terrain
- They DO account for curvature of the Earth
- They DO NOT take into account your antenna gain, amps, or receiver sensitivity
- They DO NOT account for building obstructions or indoor penetration
- They DO NOT account for multipath

In very rough terms, the coverage map colors can be broken down as follows (not related to CEA antenna colors):

- White is extremely strong. Beware of signal overload on amps.
- Red-yellow-green are all quite strong. You can expect reasonable coverage with an indoor antenna.
- Cyan is where it's advisable to move the antenna up to the second floor or attic.
- Blue is where it's probably necessary to install a good antenna on the roof.
- Purple is quite weak and you really have to work at it for any chance of reception.

Please understand that this is a simulation and can only be treated as a rough approximation. Reception at your location is affected by many factors such as multipath, antenna gain, receiver sensitivity, buildings, and trees - which are not taken into account. Your mileage may vary.
post #3056 of 3314
JLenerth,

Based on the lat/lon coordinates in your cut and past, a simple UHF loop/VHF rabbit ears placed in a west-facing window should do fine for the Cleveland stations. Do not use any amplifier of any sort. You could selected the unamplified version of the antenna you asked about, but the inexpensive option would likely do fine.

Here's the link to the useful data plot: http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...3e473032dea971

Antennas get connected to the coaxial input. However, you must make certain the older set actually has a digital tuner instead of an analog-only tuner for antenna to work these days. Digital tuners were supposed to be required in larger (>25") sets sold after March 2006. If the set was purchased before then, you'll have to dig up the specifications and see what they say.
post #3057 of 3314
tv fool - http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...3e47bec5ba0cc0

I am cancelling the TV part of my uverse today and will be using Netflix and Hulu Plus for almost everything that we watch. The main exception will be football, so I am looking to buy an antenna for the local channels.

I am planning on trying a small unamplified antenna from either Radio Shack or Best Buy so I can test it out this weekend. I would like to be able to put it behind the TV if possible, as the piece of furniture it is on is isolated and the space available due to the size of the TV is limited.

Do you have any recommendations or advice for me?
post #3058 of 3314
Two factors:
1) the NBC and CBS affiliates come from a different direction than everything else

2) one of the PBS stations is the only VHF-hi station

I'd start with a basic loop/rabbitears combo. The best orientation will likely have the plane of the loop directly north/south (looking through the loop would be east/west). Going with a more directive antenna like the HDTVi would likely force you to move the antenna between the two azimuths depending on what station you want to tune to.

If you don't care about WTVI, then you don't need to worry about the rabbit ears.

I'd suggest a real easy 2-bay bowtie antenna with no reflector screen if the loop doesn't work. See this site for instructions.
post #3059 of 3314
The Clear Stream Micron XG (with the reflector) might be a next step if multipath is a problem. It's very small, but has a lot of directivity. It would not get the VHF station.
The FOX should come in even when pointed towards the CBS and NBC, so you should be set for Sundays.
post #3060 of 3314
AFAIC, the:
"Terrestrial Digital DB2 - Double Bow Tie (AntennasDirect, Eagle Aspen, and others)"
antenna is the best bang for the buck. At least the Eagle Aspen version. The reflector can be removed and it mounted on a wooden made 'stand for a very non intrusive indoor antenna. The 3rd attachemnt is a side view with the reflector. For $13 (best price I found), you can't beat it other the the original 'Sliver Sensor', the standard others can be based on.

Of course, both of these are UHF only (for the most part). Forget using any UHF antenna on the VHF low band unless you are a very short distance away.

Just what did you do with all those antennas in the OP two year ago??
LL
LL
LL
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