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Mississauga, ON Canada: Attic antenna pre-amp question.

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hi, long time lurker here.

I just upgraded from a trek hdtva to a db4e, I kept the hdta amp for now as the reception was slightly better. I am thinking of getting a pre-amp and/or distribution amp. What would ou recommend for my setup?

Pre-amp: Kitztech KT-200 or Channel master CM7777. I wish I could get the older CM7777
Distribution amp: CM3414. 4 ports incase I decide to add other TV sets available.

Trek pointed East. Db4e is roughly pointing SouthEast. This gave the most channels for each antenna setup in the Attic.

My wiring. The signal is currently fed to the Sony TV, I'd like to split it to both. For now, I just swap the connector in the basement depending on which TV I want OTA. Both TV sets seem to pick up identical stations.
I'm actuallly not sure how long the R59 cable is as it was prewired behind the drywall before I moved in.
9073661104_11b84302dc_o.png

TV fool report
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id%3dc08d00cb9aa7d7
9073661256_82c18d3e8e_o.png

Readout from the menu of my 6yr Sony XBR. The Sharp is newer but does not have a readout.
9073661306_fbaeb3c40f_o.png
post #2 of 8
A few observations. You are only feeding two sets, so you probably don't need a pre amp. I have a "fringe" antenna, which feeds four sets and full wiring without any amps in the system, and I'm 40 miles from the transmitters-and get over 80% for the weakest stations.

An Amp is only needed for a lot of TV sets, excessively long wiring, or as a last ditch attempt to pull a weak signal. Use it last, put the money towards the antenna. Use a normal cable splitter and leave it there....you should have sufficient signal strength for your two tv sets and coax runs. Amps can pull in interference from other sources, so use it last of all.

Mount the antenna outside, on the roof, if you can. I don't know enough about this type of antenna but I think you may need more gain, a Yagi style antenna-the DB looks like it is more for urban use. If you get a good signal as-is, you might not need to.

I'd just hook up a splitter and see how it goes. My next step would be to put the antenna outside, and aim it with a helper...I'm off axis from TV FOOL direction at my location due to the the hills, but it's a guide, not a regulation.

Don't be afraid to move the antenna itself around. UHF has short wavelengths and your reception can vary from front of attic to back of attic....but up on the roof is still first choice.

Don't spend money yet. Just see if you can get a solid signal from the antenna alone with a splitter....and if you are "close" move the antenna or get a larger one before going for an amp.

Good luck. Uncompressed TV is well worth it.
post #3 of 8
Topic title edited to add location (see sticky posts) and make more specific.
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by speedlaw View Post

A few observations. You are only feeding two sets, so you probably don't need a pre amp. I have a "fringe" antenna, which feeds four sets and full wiring without any amps in the system, and I'm 40 miles from the transmitters-and get over 80% for the weakest stations.

An Amp is only needed for a lot of TV sets, excessively long wiring, or as a last ditch attempt to pull a weak signal. Use it last, put the money towards the antenna. Use a normal cable splitter and leave it there....you should have sufficient signal strength for your two tv sets and coax runs. Amps can pull in interference from other sources, so use it last of all.

Mount the antenna outside, on the roof, if you can. I don't know enough about this type of antenna but I think you may need more gain, a Yagi style antenna-the DB looks like it is more for urban use. If you get a good signal as-is, you might not need to.

I'd just hook up a splitter and see how it goes. My next step would be to put the antenna outside, and aim it with a helper...I'm off axis from TV FOOL direction at my location due to the the hills, but it's a guide, not a regulation.

Don't be afraid to move the antenna itself around. UHF has short wavelengths and your reception can vary from front of attic to back of attic....but up on the roof is still first choice.

Don't spend money yet. Just see if you can get a solid signal from the antenna alone with a splitter....and if you are "close" move the antenna or get a larger one before going for an amp.

Good luck. Uncompressed TV is well worth it.

Thanks speedlaw.

I actually just bought the Antenna direct Db4e antenna as it was onsale and I thought it will be a good replacement for the Trek. I spend about 3 hrs aiming over 3 days before I settled on the result above(Cloud coverage sucked).

I'll probably try the roof antenna later on, but I want to keep it in the Attic for now since I'll have to pay some one to climb up on the roof and the going rate is $250+.

The Local Canadian stations are to the east on the map and pick up very well once I aim it there. The problem is that I also want the USA stations to the South East. The USA channels are still abit on the weak side still.

I can buy a two-way splitter on my way home today to test out but I was hoping to add a hdhomerun soon in the future. I thought I would definitely need a pre-amp in the attic and/or distribution amp in the basement.
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDon View Post

Topic title edited to add location (see sticky posts) and make more specific.

Thanks. I will look at the sticky.

My location is actually Mississauga, ON but I'm having issued updating the thread title
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
Update:

I tried a 5MHz - 1GHz 2-way splitter and lost signal across all stations. SNR went down roughly 5db so my fringe stations which ended up with less than 15db lost signal. Most were American stations.
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Well, I picked up a CM3414 today and tried it with the terk amp removed. Signal went down slightly but I was able to split it to both TV sets and lost only two channels.

After trying a few settings with the terk amp installed, I've managed to get the SNR above 20 on all stations. Signal strength is very good too with only 6 stations below 87. I think I'm going to try it for a few days to check for overload. If none then I will get good pre-amp to replace the terk amp.
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Db4e + terk amp + CM3414 + Attic install


SNR (dB) AGC (%) Signal Strength
2.1 27 49 87
2.2 27 49 87
4.1 23 55 74
5.1 32 29 98
7.1 24 55 78
9.1 27 31 89
11.1 20 46 70
17.1 29 40 98
17.2 30 42 98
17.3 31 42 95
19.1 29 30 95
23.1 29 34 95
23.2 30 34 95
25.1 31 34 98
29.1 19 60 67
29.2 19 59 67
35.1 21 60 70
36.1 31 36 98
40.1 25 55 84
41.1 27 50 87
41.2 27 50 87
43.7 30 42 98
43.8
43.9
47.1 27 51 87
49.1 20 63 70
57.1 24 54 78
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