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The Official AVS Antenna and Related Hardware Topic! - Page 3

post #61 of 16128
I can vouch for the DB8.

It has very substantial construction with a relatively flat gain curve and a broader beam width than the 4228.

It is not an apples to apples comparison, and is worth the money if you are on a deep fringe location
post #62 of 16128
I probably didnt need th DB8...maybe I could have gone with the DB4 but Im growing tired of trying Antennas that arent good enough. I wanted the strongest UHF gain that isnt directional. The DB8 attracted me because it covers an area of 90 degrees from where the Ant is pointed. Maybe I could pick up everything that is coming from NYC without having to adjust it for the best sig. Either way its a clear upgrade from the Stealth.
post #63 of 16128
The wider beamwidth can also be a disadvantage in dealing with multipath.
With everything there's a tradeoff, it seems. Good Luck.
Charles
post #64 of 16128
Yeah, it all depents on where you are. Some around here (No Va) can use the wider beam to get Balt and Wash without a rotator. Others will suffer multipath from that. One more reason to bite the bullet and call in the pros.
post #65 of 16128
I live in a hotel. The hotel has directtv as well as a local uhf and a vhf antenna I believe. I have an accessdtv card and a silver sensor. The hotels antenna and satellite go into a distribution system where the channels are lined up for a closed system inside the building. I don't know if its possible to add a filter or trap (or something else.. not to clear on the terminology to use here...) and route that signal from the antenna directly to my room... might be possible...

But most probable would be improving my reception. The stations are pretty close (less than 10 miles from me)

* red - uhf KXAN-DT 36.1 NBC AUSTIN TX 260° 5.7miles
* red - uhf KVUE-DT 24.1 ABC AUSTIN TX 258° 6.0miles
* red - uhf KTBC-DT 7.1 FOX AUSTIN TX 248° 5.5miles
* red - uhf KNVA-DT 54.1 WB AUSTIN TX 260° 5.7miles
* red - uhf KEYE-DT 42.1 CBS AUSTIN TX 258° 6.0miles
* red - uhf KLRU-DT 22.1 PBS Austin TX 260° 5.7miles

because of where my room is I can usually get at best 1 channel in with 70% peak. (not sure which right now as I am typing this from work) Accessdtv will "find" mostly all of these. If I change the direction im pointing it sometimes will get another channel but the other might come in lower or not at all.

Another issue is something about the cable attached to the antenna. Sometimes if I place the cable coming from the back "over" the back dipoles of the antenna it gives it a little boost to the reception..

I have a desk stereo that runs close to the cable and I am not sure if that is part of the problem or not. Another idea is that I might be able to improve reception with a preamp or amp.. not sure.. Any ideas?

If you have an idea please let me know in laymans terms or have a specific product recomendation include a model... I thank you in advance for any ideas..
post #66 of 16128
I have a CM 4228 and a DB8. Seems like the DB8 has marginally better reception where I'm at.

All stations are 16-17°. All at 35.7-36.4 miles.
post #67 of 16128
I'm in west Michigan, and I can recieve all of the Grand Rapids stations just fine. Last Thursday, I was able to recieve some DTV stations from Green Bay, Chicago and South Bend, but at about 9:45 PM on Friday they all disappeared. Since then I have not been able to recieve any of them, only an occasional blip from WSBT when the antenna is pointed at it.

Does anyone have any idea what could cause this, or how I could get those stations back in? Here's what I'm using, if it matters:

Antennas: Terk TV35 UHF/VHF mounted atop a quad-bowtie UHF of unknown origin
Preamp: Channelmaster 3041
Antenna position: 10ft above ground, outside next to the house
Tuner: pcHDTV HD-2000 DTV card
post #68 of 16128
Electrode1,

It was likely a weather condition called tropospheric ducting. In effect, distant signals are carried long distances through layers of the atmosphere under certain weather conditions, occurring more often in the warm weather months. Search Google for "tropo ducting" and you'll get plenty of info on it. Also, go to William Hepburn's tropo forecast site to see (remember, it's only a *forecast*) when conditions will occur again in your area.

I received a couple of stations I'd never gotten before last week as well, but not since.

Charles
post #69 of 16128
Very interesting. That would explain a lot.
post #70 of 16128
I'm planning on mounting an outdoor uhf antenna onto my chimney with the straps. A channel master 4248 or 3023. Lowe's have channel master 10ft and 5ft posts. How high can I join the masts without needing guy wires too? I'd like to go at least 15ft with 2 posts and better yet 20ft.

Hopefully with the narrow design of the antenna wind would not have too much drag or force, I'm not sure. I'd also need a rotor atop the mast too, so that may and some drag too.

How high can I go with this antenna mounted to the chimney.... Thanks
post #71 of 16128
Anyone out there from Reno, NV? I've used Antennaweb.org and solidsignal to check things out, but I'm looking for someone who has gotten good results here. Thanks.
post #72 of 16128
Cool Chart.

Thanks for the Antennaweb.org link.
post #73 of 16128
Quote:


Originally posted by Angelo M
How high can I join the masts without needing guy wires too?

Hopefully with the narrow design of the antenna wind would not have too much drag or force, I'm not sure. I'd also need a rotor atop the mast too, so that may and some drag too.

The 4228 has a high wind load because of the large surface area. Although torque is probably less because of the narrow design, there's still plenty of metal to catch the wind if you're pointed in the right direction.

The real question is this: how strong is your chimney? You can strap anything to it, but once you securely attach it, it is only as strong as what it is attached to. Generally, mason (brick/stone) chimneys are not designed to handle torque at all, meaning that over time, wind will pull your chimney apart. If you have a wood chimney, they do better.

To be safe, I'd say you shouldn't clear your chimney by more than 6'. You might get away with more, but then again, you might not.

Guy wires provide a lot of extra strength and security, taking almost the entire wind load off of your chimney. Use silicone to seal the guy wire holes and you should be fine for water issues.

Legal disclaimer: I'm not a builder, roofer, or antenna installer. No guarantees, even for 6'.
post #74 of 16128
Angelo M,
Do you have to mount to your chimney? A ground mount strapped to the wall on the way up is much more secure and also easier. In addition, you can have easier access to the antenna from the roof. Chimney mounts are pretty difficult (never done one myself) and you might consider getting a professional to help. If you have the option of a ground mount, it can be done by an amatuer (I did). Here's a picture of mine. It's on my garage and I can easily climb up on the roof and access my antenna. In addition, I used a telescoping mast upside-down so the part that is loaded the most is the strongest. Channel master says on their website that you can go no more than 10 ft above roof-line with a ground mount and no guy wires.

Charles

 

ant 3.zip 124.2568359375k . file
post #75 of 16128
cpcat,

I don't have to use the chimney. It is the highest point of my house. I actually have a 2 1/2 story house. I wanted to get the antenna as high up as possible without using one of the heavy duty type masts. My roof peaks at the center of the house from all 4 sides and my chimney is near the center. With a 10 foot mast I figure the antenna would be about 40ft off the ground. I considered wall mounting but with a 10 mast above the gutter it would just about be level with the peak of the roof.

By the way this whole antenna end of HDTV is pretty new to me, but you seem to have a serious antenna setup. Do the dual UHF's in your set up maximize you channels and reception vs just one?

sregener,

My chimney's condition is the weak link as far as durability is concerned. I am getting prices on having it repointed. I can picture it failing in its present condition.

It seems like getting the right antenna setup/location requires alot of headwork, planning and luck as far as being in the right position for signal reception.

Thanks both of you for your input.......
post #76 of 16128
Angelo M,
My advice to you before you start all of this is don't underestimate how important your piece of mind is when the wind is howling outside. If you go with an outdoor antenna, find a way to make it strong. I started with an eave mount on my garage but found myself going and looking at the antenna constantly expecting it to fall down.

In general, extra height is good, but not always. With my telescoping mast I can go up about another 8 feet but in my situation the signal is actually stronger at the lower position. If your situation requires 360 degree exposure you may have to go to the highest point on the roof, but OTOH if your stations are located in one general direction you may not need it as much as you think. The problem is, it's hard to really know until you try.

You might consider mounting the 4248 +/- a preamp on a short piece of mast and moving it around on your roof with someone checking your favorite channels inside (on a calm day would be wise) and seeing where you can get an adequate signal before making a more definitive plan.

My journey started with a CM Stealthtenna from Lowes. I set it up in my living room with a CM Spartan preamp (also from Lowes). I couldn't get anything so I moved to the attic. Nothing. I almost gave up but figured I'd try it on my front porch. Bingo, I had a VHF CBS from about 50 miles, so I decided to make the effort for an outdoor antenna. From there it's just evolved as I've gone for better and longer distance and continued the quest for more stations. It's addicting so be careful. The horizontal stack I have now provides added gain and probably more importantly added directivity and multipath rejection. You can stack vertically as well but horizontal directivity stays the same and you narrow the beam vertically. I tried it and it worked pretty well but it was murder on my rotor in a stiff wind (see my piece of mind comment above).

Charles
post #77 of 16128
I would like to get some input on the advantages and disadvantages of OTA reception compared to using D* satellite for my local stations. I am less than 20 miles from all the local tv antennas and they are all located in the same location. Thanks
post #78 of 16128
Quote:


Originally posted by rldud
I would like to get some input on the advantages and disadvantages of OTA reception compared to using D* satellite for my local stations. I am less than 20 miles from all the local tv antennas and they are all located in the same location.

Advantages of D* over antenna:

- All signals digital, reliable, except when it rains.
- Install is relatively straightforward as there are few choices.
- Dish doesn't need to be installed at the peak of your roof.

Disadvantages of D* over antenna:

- Pay extra $$$ every month for free television.
- Overcompressed D* signals have poor color depth and have artifacts.
- No HD networks (except maybe CBS if you live in an O&O area)
- Can't give you out-of-market signals, which you might get with an antenna.

For most people, I think the advantages of digital terrestrial reception should slant things that way - why pay money for overcompressed digitals when you can get much better digital signals from the local towers? Add in HD content, and the local antenna option should win every time, even if you don't have an HDTV (downconverted HD looks better than upconverted analog!)
post #79 of 16128
I do have a new HDTV and D* HD receiver. They say that local channels will be available in a couple of months (?) and I just have rabbit ear antennas in my attic that I used for my old standard TV. The antennas I have now will work but the picture is not very good, so I know I need to do something. I am thinking about buying a good antenna and mounting it outside. I am also worried about lightning with the OTA antenna. Thanks for the info.
post #80 of 16128
I live east of Orlando FL, actually Merritt Island. I currently have two antennas in the attic; a high gain UHF (Channelmaster 4228) and a small YAGI cut for VHF 11. This is because WNBC comes in on channel 11 for HDTV and all others are on UHF. The two antennas feed a Channel master 7777 preamp and then a Spaun multiplexor. I know if I put the antennas on the roof all will be better except with my HOA, who have no say in the matter. I am an officer in the HOA, so i try to be nice and i don't like the look of the antenna on the roof. I may be forced there though.

I get between 77% and 100% signal strength on 12 digital channels, except for one important one, WCBS. I get no signal there. I do not understand why since all transmitters (the ones I care about are at the same location (Bithlo) and about 35 miles away over Florida Terrain (nothing high).

I did remove a section of radiant barrier (silver foil) and that improved the received SS by almost 30% to its current level.

To get WCBS (UHF 58) I have a Jointenna on order. I will then use a small directional UHF in the attic and tie it in via the jointenna and specifically aim it to get a maximum signal on UHF 58. Probably nbeed to take down more radiant barrier. Total cable runs to the sets are about 100 feet from antenna to mlpxr to sets.

I will post how I make out.
post #81 of 16128
Quote:


Originally posted by barrygordon

I get between 77% and 100% signal strength on 12 digital channels, except for one important one, WCBS. I get no signal there.

You should be quite impressed if you got WCBS from Orlando, Florida. WCBS broadcasts in New York City. (Okay, okay. You're talking about the local CBS affiliate, WKMG, but it took me quite a bit of legwork to figure that one out.)

The gain curve on the 4228 starts to drop after channel 50. See:
http://www.hdtvprimer.com/ANTENNAS/comparing.html

The higher the channel number, the more directional most UHF antennas become. Thus, you should expect that a few degrees change in direction will make or break you with WKMG-DT-58.

You don't say how far away you are from the towers, but if you haven't tried it without a preamplifier, it might be worth a shot. WKMG-DT is running a full megawatt of power (though slightly less in your direction with their directional antenna) and from a very tall tower. Unless you're 50+ miles out, that preamp could be making things worse for you.
post #82 of 16128
I have a question about antenna selection. I am seriously considering purchasing a directional antenna to receive OTA HD signals. I live in SE Michigan (about 45 miles north of Detroit). According to Antennaweb.org I am 26 miles from the furthest tower I want to receive from and all of the stations are within 6 degrees of each other.

I am only considering an attic mount because I really don't like the looks of an antenna on the roof. Antennas direct recommended the XG42 directional antenna.

What has anyones experience been with this antenna? I'm assuming that with a 6 degree spread between towers I should be OK with this antenna. Am I going to experience to much loss with it in the attic? I have an asphalt shingle roof and vinyl siding. I am guessing that I will be running about 35 feet of RG6 to the video distribution panel and a maximum of another 25 feet to the TV.

I'm looking for any advice/recommendations on this topic. My main goal is to use the antenna mounted antenna, from there, I am open to different ideas (different equipment, pre-amp, etc.).

Thanks in advance,
Nick
post #83 of 16128
Quote:


Originally posted by NGiovas

I am only considering an attic mount because I really don't like the looks of an antenna on the roof. Antennas direct recommended the XG42 directional antenna.

...I'm assuming that with a 6 degree spread between towers I should be OK with this antenna. Am I going to experience to much loss with it in the attic?

Most people say this, but do you really notice the antennas on the rooves in your neighborhood? I put up a 54' tower on my property and my wife noticed it for exactly three days before it blended into the "normal" view.

Generally, an attic will cost you a minimum of 1/2 your signal. It can also introduce multipath. In extreme cases, the attic will block all of the signal. You may need to experiment with different locations in your attic before you find one that works. And even after you find one that works, varying weather conditions could move the "sweet spot" around.

The XG42 is a fine antenna, and it might work great for you, assuming you can fit it around your rafters. Most people go with the Channel Master bowties when they're in attics, just because they have a much shorter footprint.

You should be okay on 6 degrees unless some channel numbers are very high. Once you get around channel 50, most antennas become very narrow on their acceptance angle and if you have two that are 6 degrees apart above channel 50 that could present a problem. In that case, I'd stronly recommend a bowtie design, as they are slightly less directional on the upper end when compared to a yagi.
post #84 of 16128
Quote:


Originally posted by sregener
Most people say this, but do you really notice the antennas on the rooves in your neighborhood? I put up a 54' tower on my property and my wife noticed it for exactly three days before it blended into the "normal" view.

Lucky you. My wife definitely notices "those big ugly antennas" all the time. She makes sure to point them out to me now, just so that I don't get any ideas about mounting one for our house, I think. I'm only a few miles from all but one of my local channels, so I'm hoping an outdoor antenna will not be required.
post #85 of 16128
Why isn't anyone offering outdoor antennas painted sky blue (or sky gray depending on where you live, or some combination pattern)?

There's certainly paints that can safely be used. And it'd make it a lot more difficult to see as a "big ugly antenna" if there was a little color/camouflage to it.

As close as you are, though, Brett, the Winegard SquareShooter probably would be ideal... and it's a compact 16"x16".
post #86 of 16128
I'll check that one out, Doug... thanks.
post #87 of 16128
I painted my D* Dish with no problems to match the house exterior. Hardly noticable. Do not use a metallic paint as the reflected heat on the LNB is not smart
post #88 of 16128
I have my Hitachie 65S700 hooked up OTA to local channels. NBC Signal Strength (SS) =~90, CBS~60, ABC~70, FOX~40. I actually am using an RCA 1250 table top antenna with a 45DB Att. (Walmart $30) I was amazed how much that improved the signal (about 30 units).

I rarely can see FOX. CBS cuts in and out some nights and is good some nights. When it cuts out I can see SS jumping all over the place.

1. How are these ss for receiving?
2. Why does the ss on CBS jump around some nights and not others?
3. Can I get more amp. if I used a rooftop with an amp. ? How much attentuation can I reasonably apply?
post #89 of 16128
I'm finally getting ready to buy a UHF antenna. I'm anywhere between 40 and 65 miles from the stations. Antenna web has my needs coded as violet. My zip is 15401.

Titan TV, when I plug in the info needed, shows me being able to receive all of the digital stations with a very good signal rating. Their results look more favorable to me than antenna web. Maybe because they also recommend a certain brand of antenna.

My personal choices are CM 4248 UHF, the narrow looking antenna, or the
CM 4228, the big rectangular one. The 4228 has a longer range rating, but from what I have read the 4248 has a range rating that most feel is underrated. I would mate these with the CM 7777 preamp going to feed approximately 50-75ft of RG-6 to my HD tuner. My antenna can go as high as 40 ft but I would mount lower if I can receive the channels. What is the best of the two.

I just wanted to make the best choice based on others experiences with these 2 CM antennas, or another brand if recommended. Since this is my first antenna installation and have no prior experience with any models at all, any input would be appreciated. I know when it comes down to it, it is a crapshoot at best, I just want the best chance for success.
post #90 of 16128
If most of your stations are broadcasting from the same location, your situation sounds good. I'd put up a CM4228 and a CM7777 preamp. Frankly I'd put it on a rotator too, even though you may never use it once positioned. But as always, the higher the better. If you already have a mast in place, I'd put it right at the top. If not, then just get it above the surrounding buildings' rooflines.

The CM 4248 is a little more directional, but I don't think there's that much practical difference that couldn't be accounted for by aiming.
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