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Tampa, FL - HDTV - Page 3

post #61 of 1737
Here's what I've come up with as a solution. Is this a good plan or am I out of my mind? Please let me know what you think.

post #62 of 1737
Two things:

1) I don't have a clue how you're going to get power to those preamplifiers. Preamps come in two boxes, an indoor and an outdoor unit. The outdoor unit goes close to the antenna (preferably within 2 feet.) The indoor unit goes as close to the television as possible. The indoor unit injects power into the coax which then powers the outdoor unit. The problem is that jointennas and splitters will NOT pass DC voltage, which is what you need to power the preamplifier. I also suspect that a preamplifier will NOT help you, given how close you are to the broadcasting towers, and quite likely will HARM reception. If you insist on a preamplifier, it should go below the VHF/UHF combiner.

2) If you do go the preamplifier route, move the UHF-only preamp for channel 24 behind the jointenna. And the splitter is redundant there. The Jointenna will have two input jacks and one output jack - one input for Channel 24, one for everything else. The output could then go directly into the VHF/UHF combiner.
post #63 of 1737
Quote:
1) I don't have a clue how you're going to get power to those preamplifiers. Preamps come in two boxes, an indoor and an outdoor unit. The outdoor unit goes close to the antenna (preferably within 2 feet.) The indoor unit goes as close to the television as possible. The indoor unit injects power into the coax which then powers the outdoor unit. The problem is that jointennas and splitters will NOT pass DC voltage, which is what you need to power the preamplifier.

I want to put all of this INDOORS (in the attic). I assumed that I could put the "indoor" unit right after the "outdoor" unit (See the updated the image below).

Quote:
I also suspect that a preamplifier will NOT help you, given how close you are to the broadcasting towers, and quite likely will HARM reception. If you insist on a preamplifier, it should go below the VHF/UHF combiner.

I thought of the pre-amps because of all this going into the attic. I remember reading somewhere that putting an antenna in an attic can reduce its ability to pick up a signal by 50% or more...and given that here in Tampa most houses are stucco'd (instead of something like vinyl or wood siding) I assumed it would help.

Here's an updated diagram:
post #64 of 1737
bump....any comments on my latest diagram?
post #65 of 1737
The preamp has to be located a few feet of cable from the antenna to amplify at the low noise point, after a lot more cable its useless - you would just be amplifying extra noise there.
post #66 of 1737
Quote:


Originally posted by Mikey_C
I want to put all of this INDOORS (in the attic). I assumed that I could put the "indoor" unit right after the "outdoor" unit (See the updated the image below).

I thought of the pre-amps because of all this going into the attic. I remember reading somewhere that putting an antenna in an attic can reduce its ability to pick up a signal by 50% or more...and given that here in Tampa most houses are stucco'd (instead of something like vinyl or wood siding) I assumed it would help.

It is true that you can place the indoor unit right after the outdoor one, but in that case, you might as well buy a regular amplifier that comes in one box. There would be no difference in placing it after the VHF/UHF combiner. Using multiple amplifiers doesn't really get you better performance.

For digital reception, absolute signal strength is rarely the issue. You need to have a good signal-to-noise ratio for reliable reception. But whether you're 3db above the noise floor or 18db above won't make your picture any better. Amplifiers take what they receive and boost it. However, attics are areas that create a lot of multipath, which means that weak reflections are hitting your antenna. An amplifier will take those weak reflections and make them stronger - probably strong enough to interfere with your primary signal. Yes, being in an attic will cost you a minimum of 50% of the signal (and I hear it's much closer to 100% with stucco) but amplifying a weak signal isn't going to help matters much, if at all.

Honestly, I'd put every effort into doing an outdoor install. I don't understand the aesthetics issue. I have a 54' tower on my property with a 15' antenna on the top. You'd be surprised how few people notice it. I have to point it out to friends. You're probably going to a lot of effort to put this in your attic, and it is unlikely that you'll be happy with the results.
post #67 of 1737
Quote:


Originally posted by sregener
I don't understand the aesthetics issue. I have a 54' tower on my property with a 15' antenna on the top. You'd be surprised how few people notice it. I have to point it out to friends. You're probably going to a lot of effort to put this in your attic, and it is unlikely that you'll be happy with the results.

In my case its not the aesthetics....its the WAF!

Now, assuming I could get that resolved, what type of outdoor antenna are we talking about here....will I still need two antennas (one for 177 degrees and another for 275). Can I put both of them on the same mast? Does it make a difference that Tampa is the lightning capital of the world?
post #68 of 1737
Quote:


Originally posted by Mikey_C
In my case its not the aesthetics....its the WAF!

Now, assuming I could get that resolved, what type of outdoor antenna are we talking about here....will I still need two antennas (one for 177 degrees and another for 275). Can I put both of them on the same mast? Does it make a difference that Tampa is the lightning capital of the world?

The WAF is almost always tied to aesthetics. I'd advise driving around and pointing out the antennas you see. Odds are good she's never noticed them. If you can, show her what bad digital reception looks like - lots of artifacts/dropouts, etc. That has an even lower WAF than an antenna.

If you use a rotor, you only need one antenna. If you want a drop-in, never needs turning system, you'd need two with the Jointenna and such.

A properly grounded antenna is no more attractive for lightning than any other object at similar height. A search of this forum will yield lots of good information on how to ground an antenna properly.
post #69 of 1737
I've driven around most (if not all) of our sub-division and still have not seen an outdoor antenna....I don't know if its because no one is using HD around here...or if they all have the same WAF problem.

Can I put two antennas on the same mast and point them at different directions? Wouldn't they interfere with each other?
post #70 of 1737
What is WAF?
post #71 of 1737
W A F = Wife Acceptance Factor
post #72 of 1737
LOL. Thats the first time I heard this one!
post #73 of 1737
Quote:


Originally posted by sregener
A properly grounded antenna is no more attractive for lightning than any other object at similar height.

It's really less attractive. During the buildup of static charge from storm winds, high clouds take on a positive charge and low clouds a negative charge. Surface areas take on a positive charge and subsurface a negative charge. It's the difference between low cloud charge and surface charge that creates ground strike lightning. The ground system of a building goes deep enough underground that it and metal objects wired to it, like an antenna mast, don't have the same positive charge as surface objects do.
post #74 of 1737
I use a Winegard YA1713 for VHF channels 9 (75 miles) and 12 (10 miles) at about 20 ft up. I've had great results, and the antenna has a relatively small footprint compared to my old CM3020.
post #75 of 1737
What a mast dude! You're way over the roof level as well!
post #76 of 1737
Quote:


Originally posted by mallu2u
What a mast dude! You're way over the roof level as well!

That's nothing. Check out mine.
LL
post #77 of 1737
Quote:


Originally posted by sregener
That's nothing. Check out mine.

Great! Now this thread has degraded to a contest over who has the biggest mast...
post #78 of 1737
I installed one antenna in the Tampa Bay area, and it was 30 years ago for my grandparents who lived in St. Petersburg Beach, right on the water. 30 years ago, there was no cable Tv there, and my aged grandmother was frustrated at not being able to see her soap operas clearly on their new RCA XL 100 TV! I used a simple broadband uhf-vhf antenna for most of the stations, and a separate antenna for channel 10, a five element yagi, if I remember correctly: They all marveled how terrific their picture was, and I was amazed how easy it was to get a picture in that area: all you needed was a decent antenna! There are probably a lot more stations on the air in Tampa-St. Pete than there were in 1973, but the principle hasn't changed: If you want good reception, you need the right antenna system for the job. You have received a lot of good advice from people here: for Pete's sake, listen to it! It wasn't created in a vacuum! Forget about omni-directional antennas: they are worthless! Get a broadband UHF-VHF antenna, like a Channel Master 3679, a Winegard HD7082P, or a Wade-Dehhi VU933SR with the powerzoom, aim it at your 174-177 degree stations, and use a UHF yagi antenna like a Channel Master 4248 or a Winegard HD9085 for the one station you are looking for at 250 degrees, and use a Join-Tenna to connect the two. Voila, everything clear and simple. If you have a WAF issue, remember that it is much easier to ask forgiveness than it is to ask permission! You will be rewarded with glorious, free HDTV! and your wife will peobably be placated by candy, flowers, or a nice evening out. Don't overthink this one: it really isn't that hard!
post #79 of 1737
Looks like we are going to miss out on the HD olympics here in Tampa. They are going to air them on Pax. WHatever chanel that is. Are we out of luck on HD? Heck, I may not have power anyway..
post #80 of 1737
Good luck in the Tampa/St. Pete area!
post #81 of 1737
Oh, *that* Charley... (couldn't resist...). (Yeah, best of luck! May the dishs and OTAs survive!)
post #82 of 1737
Pax has a digital channel (66-1, not sure the "actual" channel), but I don't think its HD.
post #83 of 1737
Umm, what happenend to your NBC, they blow up or something?


Nvmd, just woke up brain not functioning
post #84 of 1737
ANyone care to call pax and see if they can pass the HD signal?
post #85 of 1737
Pax airs 4 digital SD channels - and they arent going to give up their God channel .3 or worship channel .4 so they can do HD for the olympics

I am not even sure they have the capability for 16:9 HD in their plant.
post #86 of 1737
Well that's a bummer. Especially since the storm is now going to miss us anyway.
post #87 of 1737
Good for you. We (South Lakeland) are now scheduled to get the eye of the damn thing. Since it is a small storm, we can only hope it dissipates real fast. I'm too old for this.

Since I have all three sat. services, I'll post how the various "dishes" weather the storm.

Signing off.
post #88 of 1737
interesting, a category 4 is a small storm to you? you must be tough
post #89 of 1737
Quote:


Originally posted by bgall
interesting, a category 4 is a small storm to you? you must be tough

I'm a coward. To clarify, I meant the physical diameter of the storm, particularly the eye is supposed to be smaller than you might expect from a possible cat 5 storm. Therefore the quick dissipation of the eye as it collapses.

The Tampa ABC affiliate I am watching is on the phone with a guy and his family "hunkered down" in his home as the eye passes over.
post #90 of 1737
Hello, and thank you in advance for your guidance.

I've been referred to this forum by greywolf at the Keohi HDTV Forum. I live in VillageWalk, a new development off of Honore Ave. & Palmer Ranch Rd. I have a Samsung HLN570 DLP projection set.

I initially tried Comcast's HDTV offering but decided I could get more content, better quality and an overall lower cost with an OTA DTV/HDTV solution. My problem is choosing an antenna. I could sure use your help.

My preference is for an attic antenna, but I think there may be a number of problems with this approach:

1) CEA recommends a large directional antenna. I have a trussed attic space which will probably not support a 9-14 foot boom. I haven't checked because I don't have a latter big enough to get into the attic crawl space. The family room where the TV is has a 12 foot ceiling.

2) The roofing is concrete barrel tile. That's a lot of material for a signal to penetrate.

3) Attic antennas have as much as 40% of their signal blocked. A sales rep at Sound Advice told me that attic antennas are a 50/50 proposition in Sarasota.

Putting an antenna on the roof also is problematic:

1) My homeowner association (HOA) frowns on roof antennas. I know, I know, the law allows me to install an antenna. But I would prefer not to if possible.

2) My wife refuses to consider such an option given Sarasota's status as lightning capital of the world (except for one other spot in Africa) and the high probability for tropical or hurricane force winds in the area.

I'm interested in purchasing a Samsung SIR-T415, their newest DTV/HDTV tuner. I'm holding off until I'm sure that OTA signals are a viable option.

My current plan is to run a test with a Winegard Sensar II GS2000. I plan to mount it on the rear of the house (faces north) at the roofline (12 feet up) inside the pool cage, which is attached to the house (my wife approves). The Wineguard rep I spoke with today (Derek) recommended this unit over the newer SquareShooter SS-2000. So has Al from Stark Electronics, whom I have also consulted. Does anyone have experience with this antenna?

All suggestions and recommendations are welcome!

Thanks again,

Dan
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