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Charlotte, NC - OTA - Page 238

post #7111 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by gayle28607 View Post

I think I'm going to need some luck. rolleyes.gif

The current antenna install has coax from the TV through the wall to a metal box on the wall (directly outside). The box sort of protects the hole in the house the cable runs through. That short run of cable that started at the TV runs out a hole in the bottom of the little metal box, and the connection from the antenna happens there, outside the box. Maybe not optimal? I'll probably be replacing that so it's just one piece of cable running straight to the TV. WJZY might be getting lost at that connection, who knows. Certainly not me

I think I need a compression crimping tool so I can push the cable through that hole in the house and make the coax the right length with no extra connector. The existing run it a little longer than it needs to be.
That outside junction box could contain a splitter. If so that could be where you are suffering some signal loss. I would remove the splitter if you have only one TV. Otherwise, possibly replace with a distribution amp. But all you probably need is a good antenna and preamp such as the Kitztech 200. Just make sure there is no bad connection at the junction box.
post #7112 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post

That outside junction box could contain a splitter. If so that could be where you are suffering some signal loss. I would remove the splitter if you have only one TV. Otherwise, possibly replace with a distribution amp. But all you probably need is a good antenna and preamp such as the Kitztech 200. Just make sure there is no bad connection at the junction box.

Point taken. The cold has made me very lazy when I am outdoors, and when I was out there looking around I didn't have a screw driver, which I need to get into the box. I got back indoors and stayed there! It's now warmer, but work is picking up, too. Excuses, excuses. But - thanks for the idea because it didn't occur to me there might be a splitter in there. I was just going to check inside to make sure the wire looked good and to see how much and what kind of gunk I am going to have to dig out of the hole through the outside wall of the house.

I should run a single, unbroken wire from the antenna on the mast into the TV, right? I was thinking I'd try that before the new antenna comes.

Now I'm curious if there's anything in that box! Thanks, tylerSC.
post #7113 of 7653
Another thought Gayle. If your TV is more than 3 or so years old, you may have better luck with a stronger tuner. Some of those older Panasonic plasmas generated a good bit of electrical noise and interference. The newer models have very good tuners and perhaps better filtering/shielding. So you may want to add an external tuner box such as the PHD-208 from ePVision. Or if you want to consider a DVR, there is a PHD-VRX or the new DVR+ from Channel Master. But do you have any of the round ferrite chokes on the TV power cord? That may help. And you may want to consider a good power conditioner/surge protector. The better one have noise filtering of about 65-70db. Although there is some debate about the true performance of some of those devices. And if you want to eventually consider a newer TV, the basic Samsung 51-F4500 model is very nice for $499 and has a very good tuner. Plus good program info when using an OTA antenna. Something else to consider.
post #7114 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by blackcat6 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

....
Are you suggesting that by carrying really good programming, the local broadcasters could just go completely OTA, not even offer their signals to the cable and satellite providers, and spur viewers to go OTA-only? Or are you suggesting, that the local stations could choose "must carry" and forgo any per-subscriber revenue from the cable and satellite providers?
I don't think that is realistic. I can't see major national advertisers paying much to advertise on stations that have no cable or satellite carriage, and I can't see a big company like CBS committing to "must carry" and letting ESPN have that much of a competitive advantage.

On the part I underlined I have this to say. When did it become a bad idea to offer a product that people actually want?

People absolutely don't want to be forced to buy something they don't want and that is the model we are talking about. If I want to watch HBO, then I must also pay money all these other players in order to do so. This scheme lasted as long as there were not viable alternatives. Broadband, technology and companies like Google, Netflix & Amazon and many others have changed all that. This is the good thing about competition.

Look at Austin, TX. Google Fiber is moving in and all of a sudden AT&T is falling all over itself to offer direct fiber to the home in Austin, instead of the horribly overpriced and technically obsolete DSL/Uverse like we have here from them in Charlotte. Why are they not offering it here in CLT?

 

Oh, I was really just talking about the viability of OTA TV and whether there is any hope of ever getting back to the way things used to be, where antennas were commonplace and cable TV or satellite was regarded as a luxury designed for people who wanted something special.

 

I love high definition pictures, so I don't want to go back to analog broadcasting.

What I would really like is for DVRs to vanish and for everybody to understand that if commercials are going to pay for "free" broadcasting, then people have to be willing to watch the commercials. Internet "streaming" to the TV is too complicated for me, and why should I pay for the hardware to do that?

 

I also don't want to buy individual programs from NetFlix or anyone else.

What I want is for network programming executives to do a decent job of programming scripted programming (not reality shows), especially in prime time.

 

And I would like to see Major League Baseball return to local broadcast stations.

 

In other words, I want to keep digital broadcasting, but in most other respects, I want to turn TV back to the way it was in 1974.

post #7115 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by blackcat6 View Post

When it comes to antenna installs one thing I have learned that blanket assumptions are a bad idea.

My opinion is that you shouldn't use a pre-amp unless you need it to compensate for signal loss in your distribution system. It's never a good idea to add more complexity because there is more to go wrong. I also think it's a bad idea to make assumptions on equipment in TVs without knowing the actual specifications. I have my doubts that a blanket assumption of 4-5db loss for all TVs is really true. If your TV can receive what you want without an amp, then don't add an amp. Furthermore, here in Charlotte, adding an amp such as a CM7777 isn't a good idea. It's far far too much power and amps also have the downside of amplifying multipath, which is another reason to avoid them if possible.

Amplifiers won't put more signal on your antenna. At best they can only keep you from losing what you receive.

I agree with you in not adding an amp if signals are already strong because of overloading, but I was responding to the poster in Boone who is in a fringe area as myself where there is not going to be any danger of overloading with an amp, and I was suggesting a preamp because the poster is interested in getting wjzy which will scan in but not quite strong enough to have a picture, in this case a preamp may be just enough to receive it even with a short coax run. No a preamp does not make your antenna better than it is, but in a sense it can because it can actually make the signal stronger than if you hooked the TV in right at the antenna only because as I was saying a low noise preamp can actually take the place of the noise figure in the TV which I can almost guarantee the .4 db noise figure is going to be lower than any TV noise figure you will find. I just hooked an antenna up in a very fringe area in northern Wilkes county a couple of weeks ago at a house that is completely blocked by trees in all directions except a small opening towards the Burke county translators for wccb and wsoc, I hooked it up without a preamp first because i only used about 20 feet of coax and did not scan a single channel in. So I then added a kitztech 200 to the antenna and was able to scan in wccb,wsoc,whky,and impressively even wspa at 100 miles away, of course these are not strong signals but they stay in 90 percent of the time and was due to the preamp even with the short coax run. Every situation can be different though you just have to experiment.
post #7116 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by wncbraves View Post

..... I just hooked an antenna up in a very fringe area in northern Wilkes county a couple of weeks ago at a house that is completely blocked by trees in all directions except a small opening towards the Burke county translators for wccb and wsoc, I hooked it up without a preamp first because i only used about 20 feet of coax and did not scan a single channel in. So I then added a kitztech 200 to the antenna and was able to scan in wccb,wsoc,whky,and impressively even wspa at 100 miles away, of course these are not strong signals but they stay in 90 percent of the time and was due to the preamp even with the short coax run. Every situation can be different though you just have to experiment.
Sure. If you have to experiment on a specific installation to receive a difficult signal I have no issue with this. However this wasn't what i was responding to. It sounded to me that you were suggesting to put an amp on any installation as it will be better than the TV amp. Your comment's on short coax and what you said you did for customers.

I agree that 0.4 db probably is better than most receivers out there, but you really don't know how much better. If you end up with a net of 1-2.5 db, I don't think it's worth it because that's small enough for other variables, such as weather, to overwhelm it.

Amplifiers are not free. Spending $85 for an amp, just because it has low noise, is a bit of false economy. IMO, it's best to spend the money on a better antenna than to spend it on an amp in hopes of improving an antenna that isn't up to the job. This is why people should consider purchasing a pre-amp only for loss compensation and don't worry about beating the tuner in the receiver.
Edited by blackcat6 - 1/9/14 at 12:57am
post #7117 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

Oh, I was really just talking about the viability of OTA TV and whether there is any hope of ever getting back to the way things used to be.....I want to turn TV back to the way it was in 1974.
I don't see it happening for this reason. People watch programs, not channels. (leaving a TV on for "noise" isn't watching TV) In 1974, the only option people had for watching programs was to view a channel of pre-selected programs to be shown at a specific time. The downside of 1974 was that you had to watch your program at the time broadcast and also deal with commercials. If you were not at home, then too bad.

These days the technology allows people to consume just the program and avoid the nonsense and inconvenience. Successful cord cutters have learned that it's not about the channel, it's about the program. So instead of worrying about A&E because it has the Walking Dead, they can simply buy a season pass from Amazon. Amazon charges $1.64/episode, sends you an email when it's available, and you can watch it anytime at your leisure and with no commercials. It's certainly far less expensive than maintaining a cable subscription over the entire season. You can also do this with many OTA network programs so I don't think people want to go back to 1974.

In regards to DVRs, I really couldn't deal with OTA today without it. When MythTV automatically jumps commercials it will show the length of the jump and some of those commercial breaks are approaching a ridiculous 5 minutes. In any case, for every hour/national programming there are now 16 minutes of commercials. If OTA is going to survive, it's going to have to figure out a better business model than the one that it has now.

Edit: I'll also add that there is far more choice too. We are currently watching Borgia (the one from Europe, not the inferior Showtime version) on Netflix. It has to be one of the best written TV programs that I've watched yet they would never show something like this on American TV. Some people would become unglued, but I don't have to worry about a network being afraid of that.
Edited by blackcat6 - 1/9/14 at 1:38am
post #7118 of 7653
Actually, I believe that number is closer to 18 minutes now. The average hour show has been dropped down to around 42 minutes. We used to average around 2 minutes of commercials every 15 minutes, but not any more. This is the exact reason I hate commercials, Pretty soon our 30 minute tv shows are going to be 15 minutes long with 15 minutes of commercials.It has gotten completely out of hand. Think about this, Over the last 20 years I have spent over $20,000 in cable (for me directv) and even though you end up signing stupid contracts for service, They have steadily increased commercials, They have almost moved most sports to "Pay" channels and in return we get "reality" tv crap. The tv industry today is not about quality entertainment, it has become about how rich can they get. You can talk about equipment costs and R&D till the cows come home but when is the last time you saw your bill drop? We need to charge you an extra $5 per month to offset the cost of upgrading to hd (for example), once that equipment has been paid for, do you ever see your bill drop $5 because they recouped their investment? The answer to that is a big fat no. So you continue to pay that extra monthly fee all while your shows get shorter while they continue to make more revenue from the added commercials.

I understand the need for commercials for OTA stuff, it is their only form of revenue, but many of the cable/sat channels that you PAY for, have even more commercials than your standard OTA channels. The SyFy channel for example, is one of the absolute worse when it comes to commercials and what quality entertainment do they provide to us? Why things like Sharknado of course. We lost things like All the Stargate series to things like sharknado and pretty much any movie they actually made. And the sad part to that is that we helped pay for it.
post #7119 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trip in VA View Post


I am very much looking forward to your results when all is said and done. Do let us know! smile.gif

- Trip

It's not all said and done yet, but I do have some interesting things to report. There is no splitter in the waterproof junction box outside the house. It's dry and nicely insulated in there, with a cable exiting through the bottom. It is this cable that provides my connection from the outdoor antenna through the wall to the television.

Curiously, the cable that runs from the television out through the wall of the house is RG59. It may be about four, or at the most 5 feet long. I will be replacing this with RG6, perhaps with a single run from the antenna through the wall to the TV with no breaks/connections.

The RG59 looks and feels old. I messed with the (crimped on?) fitting on the outside end of it, cleaned it up a bit, and refastened the antenna cable to it. I also climbed up to the Winegard HD8200 on its mast, removed the RCA RG6 at the fitting, and cleaned that fitting too, then refastened it. I went back inside and re-tuned the TV and I brought in WJZY, my current target channel, in brilliant OTA glory.

I went to Lowes and got a compression fitting tool, and some Snap-n-Seal water tight (proof?) connectors. When I have a few minutes I'm going to replace both ends on this relatively new RG6 coax (RCA branded). When I was cleaning one of the ends the end popped off. I put it back on, and it was fine. Got WJZY. The fittings on the cable don't look as good as the Snap n Seal fittings.

I also got the DB8 today, and put it together in about 20 minutes, in spite of the pictures and the directions. I also hooked it to the antenna cable, but just with it sitting on the deck, kind of pointed toward the ground as I was doing this without an assistant. Man that thing is tiny compared to the Winegard! I got a lot of channels with blocks of color and sound. More then the Winegard currently gets. But, the only channels it got perfectly was WJZY and the PBS stations. The rest were all broken up, but there. Remember, the antenna was propped up on the deck and shifted so it was pointed some distance away at the ground. Very bad directionally, I would think.

The 91XG was supposed to have been cancelled when I spoke with Antennas Direct, but it wasn't. It was sent out of their warehouse at the same time as the DB8, just via a different carrier. So both will be here. I'm a little aggravated at the shipping, etc, but will likely make lemonade out of the lemons, and hook both up so I can compare them with each other and with the Winegard.

Bottom line though, the old Winegard works now (definition: picks up that one channel I was missing out on), and would, I think, continue to work if I get new fittings on the coax, and ditch the short run of RG59.

I've never put fittings on coaxial cable, but I assume I can do it. Lowes had a "Snap-n-Seal" Thomas and Betts compression connection tool for just under $30, and an Ideal PrepPro Coax/UTP cable stripper for about $16. I figure that given that the fitting fell off one end of the RCA RG6 today when I was cleaning it, I can at least do it that well, and I can then re-use the new-ish RCA cable.

I'm curious to know what any of you might think or recommend given my recent brief adventures with the astonishing outcome - picking up WJZY! And it's two days to kick-off...cool.gif
post #7120 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asdar View Post

Actually, I believe that number is closer to 18 minutes now. The average hour show has been dropped down to around 42 minutes. We used to average around 2 minutes of commercials every 15 minutes, but not any more. This is the exact reason I hate commercials, Pretty soon our 30 minute tv shows are going to be 15 minutes long with 15 minutes of commercials.It has gotten completely out of hand. Think about this, Over the last 20 years I have spent over $20,000 in cable (for me directv) and even though you end up signing stupid contracts for service, They have steadily increased commercials, They have almost moved most sports to "Pay" channels and in return we get "reality" tv crap. The tv industry today is not about quality entertainment, it has become about how rich can they get. You can talk about equipment costs and R&D till the cows come home but when is the last time you saw your bill drop? We need to charge you an extra $5 per month to offset the cost of upgrading to hd (for example), once that equipment has been paid for, do you ever see your bill drop $5 because they recouped their investment? The answer to that is a big fat no. So you continue to pay that extra monthly fee all while your shows get shorter while they continue to make more revenue from the added commercials.

I understand the need for commercials for OTA stuff, it is their only form of revenue, but many of the cable/sat channels that you PAY for, have even more commercials than your standard OTA channels. The SyFy channel for example, is one of the absolute worse when it comes to commercials and what quality entertainment do they provide to us? Why things like Sharknado of course. We lost things like All the Stargate series to things like sharknado and pretty much any movie they actually made. And the sad part to that is that we helped pay for it.

I am pretty sure that most of the money made on local channels is made from the stupid retransmission fee locals get for being on pay tv. New Comcast customers actually pay an additional broadcast channels fee - it's like paying twice for what they could get free...
post #7121 of 7653
Great news Gayle. Glad to hear you got WJZY. Often old cables and connections can indeed be the cause of the problem. And I like the RG6 cable at Home Depot better than that RCA brand at Lowe's. Better connections on the ends of the cable. I would just replace all of that old cable. And I would definitely try that 91XG antenna. It is a great UHF antenna. And I still sugest trying a preamp to get a stronger signal. The RCA preamp is cheap to try and performs well. Although the Kitztech is possibly the best. And did you get the newer DB8e or the older version? But good to hear of your better results.
post #7122 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post

Great news Gayle. Glad to hear you got WJZY. Often old cables and connections can indeed be the cause of the problem. And I like the RG6 cable at Home Depot better than that RCA brand at Lowe's. Better connections on the ends of the cable. I would just replace all of that old cable. And I would definitely try that 91XG antenna. It is a great UHF antenna. And I still sugest trying a preamp to get a stronger signal. The RCA preamp is cheap to try and performs well. Although the Kitztech is possibly the best. And did you get the newer DB8e or the older version? But good to hear of your better results.

It is the old DB8.

We don't have a Home Depot anywhere near by... There is bulk double and quad shield cable at Lowes. Saw it there today. So you think I should replace the year old RCA RG6 cable, not just the fittings? What about Walmart?
post #7123 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by blackcat6 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

Oh, I was really just talking about the viability of OTA TV and whether there is any hope of ever getting back to the way things used to be.....I want to turn TV back to the way it was in 1974.
I don't see it happening for this reason. People watch programs, not channels. ... The downside of 1974 was that you had to watch your program at the time broadcast and also deal with commercials. If you were not at home, then too bad.

These days the technology allows people to consume just the program and avoid the nonsense and inconvenience. .... So instead of worrying about A&E because it has the Walking Dead, they can simply buy a season pass from Amazon. ...

In regards to DVRs, I really couldn't deal with OTA today without it. ... If OTA is going to survive, it's going to have to figure out a better business model than the one that it has now.

Edit: I'll also add that there is far more choice too. We are currently watching Borgia (the one from Europe, not the inferior Showtime version) on Netflix. It has to be one of the best written TV programs that I've watched yet they would never show something like this on American TV. Some people would become unglued,...

 

OK, I'll take your points in order.

 

1) Commercials were great. Some of them were very entertaining, and if you didn't like a commercial, it was a great opportunity to go to the bathroom or the fridge. There were also these things called summer re-runs. And this magazine called TV Guide that you could smack your siblings upside the head with to settle any dispute about what show to watch.

 

2) AMC has the zombies. A&E has the bearded duck people. I can see why it would be easy to confuse the two shows. I prefer not to do business with Amazon because I don't like their labor policies, but I digress.

 

3) OTA's current business model is to demand payment from the cable and satellite companies for the content that it provides, just as ESPN demands payment. The one virtue of the DVR is that it allows time shifting so that you can watch Jack Benny and Burns and Allen at a decent hour rather than in the 3:00 a.m. time slot that AntennaTV relegates those shows to.

 

4) Borgias, huh? Do they keep their clothes on? If not, maybe that's why the broadcast networks are currently trying to get the federal courts to invalidate the decency regulations for broadcast TV.

The broadcasters want the right to be indecent, too! (Of course, some would say that the frequent depictions of explosions and firearms violence on broadcast TV is already a form of indecency, not to mention some of the pharmaceutical ads that are broadcast all the time, even during daytime hours and during sports programming that has many young viewers in the audience.)


Edited by veedon - 1/9/14 at 5:15pm
post #7124 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by ejb1980 View Post

I am pretty sure that most of the money made on local channels is made from the stupid retransmission fee locals get for being on pay tv..

I find it interesting that people not in the industry without inside knowledge and experience make such ill-informed pronouncements. I'm pretty sure that most of the money made on local channels is from ad revenue. smile.gif
Edited by bdfox18doe - 1/9/14 at 5:28pm
post #7125 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post

Great news Gayle. Glad to hear you got WJZY. Often old cables and connections can indeed be the cause of the problem. And I like the RG6 cable at Home Depot better than that RCA brand at Lowe's. Better connections on the ends of the cable. I would just replace all of that old cable. And I would definitely try that 91XG antenna. It is a great UHF antenna. And I still sugest trying a preamp to get a stronger signal. The RCA preamp is cheap to try and performs well. Although the Kitztech is possibly the best. And did you get the newer DB8e or the older version? But good to hear of your better results.

OK, I'm going to confess to being completely ignorant about construction and DIY home improvement type projects. How does one go about replacing the coaxial cable that already runs within the walls of a home?

I mean, do you have to open up the whole wall, or can you just thread the cable through the openings where the original cable was?

post #7126 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by gayle28607 View Post

I went back inside and re-tuned the TV and I brought in WJZY, my current target channel, in brilliant OTA glory.

[...]

I'm curious to know what any of you might think or recommend given my recent brief adventures with the astonishing outcome - picking up WJZY! And it's two days to kick-off...cool.gif

Have you tried to see what else you might get now, in addition to WJZY and the stations you had previously? I'm ever so curious. smile.gif

- Trip
post #7127 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdfox18doe View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ejb1980 View Post

I am pretty sure that most of the money made on local channels is made from the stupid retransmission fee locals get for being on pay tv..

I find it interesting that people not in the industry without inside knowledge and experience make such ill-informed pronouncements. I'm pretty sure that most of the money made on local channels is from ad revenue. smile.gif

 

I'm not in the industry, and I have never learned all the details of how the broadcast TV industry works.

 

For sake of discussion, let's imagine a local affiliate WZZZ of a broadcast network, EBC.

 

I assume that any ad time that WZZZ sells during one of its locally produced shows, such as the local newscast stays at the station.

 

What about ad time during the broadcast of a network show? Does WZZZ get to keep any of that time, or does it have to turn all of that time over to EBC as payment for the programming that EBC is providing to the station?

 

And let's suppose that WZZZ reaches a retransmission consent deal with a cable company called CableCorp.

Is CableCorp required to retransmit WZZZ's signal intact, including the ads that appear in the OTA broadcast, or can CableCorp sell its own ad time during those commercial breaks?

 

However things work, I would assume that the ad rates that advertisers would be willing to pay would depend on the total viewership, OTA viewers along with viewers via satellite or cable.

post #7128 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trip in VA View Post

Have you tried to see what else you might get now, in addition to WJZY and the stations you had previously? I'm ever so curious. smile.gif

- Trip

I am ever so curious, too. Thanks for keeping up with the experiment. But I had to batten down the curiosity for now, as I didn't have time to run up and down stairs to reposition the new DB8, plus I didn't have a way to point it in any reasonable direction (note my mention of it basically pointing downhill to the ground on my property!)

Once I get the cable ends replaced - or the whole cable from bulk with new weather resistant fittings? - and get a friend here with the walkie-talkies we should be able to do some good experimenting. I'll get some sort of temporary mast for the DB8, and probably for the 91XG once it arrives, then run the scan with both after some horizontal and vertical repositioning, and see what I pick up. Given the crazy, and low, pointing of the DB8 when I came back upstairs, who knows? I do remember a double set of PBS stations though, and some others I didn't recognize from the old set. Everything except the old PBS stations and WJZY were blocks of jagged color that resolved for a second, then went back to jagged colors. That DB8 is relatively tiny, very light, and was pointed in a very wobbly way toward nowhere in particular, unfortunately.

It should definitely continue to be interesting. Or at least it's looking that way initially.
post #7129 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

OK, I'm going to confess to being completely ignorant about construction and DIY home improvement type projects. How does one go about replacing the coaxial cable that already runs within the walls of a home?
I mean, do you have to open up the whole wall, or can you just thread the cable through the openings where the original cable was?

You "fish it" through the wall. I've done it with some pretty rinky-dink contraptions - random wire, string, paper clips duct taped to the wire I want to fish. You can usually use the old wire to help. There is also something called, I think "fish tape" that pros use. If you've already got cable through your walls then you already have holes in the wall joists (correct or incorrect word? Dunno.) You can use those same holes for the new wire. That's where the old wire comes in handy for helping to pull the new wire through.

I don't know if this is helpful! I just know I've done it this way. I always avoid making more holes! The only things I've cut out are holes in sheetrock to place another outlet box, if I need one. Then I use a rotozip or dremel tool and make a neat cut. But that's just if you need to add an outlet and need to put in a box. Otherwise you just use all the existing holes, and close anything up that goes to outside. I'll probably use silicone for that part, plus a little dab on the inside wall were the new wire will come back out of the wall in the same place the old one does.
post #7130 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by gayle28607 View Post

It is the old DB8.

We don't have a Home Depot anywhere near by... There is bulk double and quad shield cable at Lowes. Saw it there today. So you think I should replace the year old RCA RG6 cable, not just the fittings? What about Walmart?
If the fittings are bad on the cable, then yes I would replace it rather than try to repair it. You have to do that carefully or it will block the signal. There is white insulation inside the cable and some sort of foil braiding. I have tried it before and never could get it exactly right. So I just got new cable and got better results. And yes, the GE brand cable at Walmart is good also, especially the quad shield. But not sure if quad shield makes a difference.
post #7131 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

OK, I'm going to confess to being completely ignorant about construction and DIY home improvement type projects. How does one go about replacing the coaxial cable that already runs within the walls of a home?
I mean, do you have to open up the whole wall, or can you just thread the cable through the openings where the original cable was?
There is usually a whole in the attic or crawl space where the cable goes behind the walls. You can try getting some strong tape and then tape the new cable to the end of the old cable and pull it through. Or they sell some sort of fishing rod at Lowe's to attach the cable to. Probably unscrew the wall plate where the cable comes out of the wall. But you have to know where the other end of the cable is, whether it be in the attic, crawl space, or outside. And sometimes this can be a bit difficult as there is only a small hole behind the wall for the cable to pass through, as well as other support beams behind there where the cable must go through. So sometimes it can be easy, and other times a bit more difficult.
post #7132 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post

If the fittings are bad on the cable, then yes I would replace it rather than try to repair it. You have to do that carefully or it will block the signal. There is white insulation inside the cable and some sort of foil braiding. I have tried it before and never could get it exactly right. So I just got new cable and got better results. And yes, the GE brand cable at Walmart is good also, especially the quad shield. But not sure if quad shield makes a difference.

I can do the Walmart cable then. But I may try my hand at putting these fittings on. They look really, well, "special", much better than what's on most of the cable I see. Not that I am now some sort of expert in RG6 appearance. Not! I just stared at it quite a bit today. Perhaps yet another experiment is in order, since I've got relatively new cable with screwy fittings! I think I'll go for the quad shield just because - that is assuming Walmart has it here.
post #7133 of 7653
I would go with new cable rather than risk putting the fittings on incorrectly and losing signal.
post #7134 of 7653
Gayle, be sure that your cable is grounded properly before it enters the house if it isn't already.
post #7135 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by Retspin View Post

Gayle, be sure that your cable is grounded properly before it enters the house if it isn't already.

There is a ground wire (thick!) that runs from the existing antenna, down the mast, to a bar sticking up out of the ground. There is another ground wire at the corner of the house that connects to a different bar (I think) and that's connected to the cable near the house. Again - "I think." I was only aware of the ground that runs down the mast until today when I saw the other one, so I may not have the positioning on that completely clear in my memory.

Would you mind describing (or posting a photo?) of what a correct ground for the cable would look like? I'm pretty sure the existing antenna is grounded properly, and when I mount a new one I'll attempt to reproduce what's already there. The other part, grounding the cable, is less clear to me.
post #7136 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post

I would go with new cable rather than risk putting the fittings on incorrectly and losing signal.

You know, it's possible that cable is screwed up, anyway, from water intrusion. That wouldn't surprise me given how easily the connector popped off. Just guessing, but I sure was surprised at how easily the RCA cable fitting fell apart!
post #7137 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by gayle28607 View Post

You know, it's possible that cable is screwed up, anyway, from water intrusion. That wouldn't surprise me given how easily the connector popped off. Just guessing, but I sure was surprised at how easily the RCA cable fitting fell apart!

It's a little pricey but IMO, a good coax crimping tool and stripper are well worth the money if you are going to be working with coax much. You can put on close to professional quality connectors and you can make your own cables to length. It's the same reason that I own a pair of these for ethernet cable too. Then you can just buy a spool of cable of either type to use as needed. If you fool with cabling much, this way turns out to be much less money.

On your question about the ground. There are two types of grounds specified for an antenna.
  1. There is a ground for your mast and non-active elements on the antenna. This ground can be connected to it's own grounding rod somewhere near the mast. It must not be bonded to the house ground. It sounds as if you have this already.
  2. There is also a ground that connects to the shield on the coax. This is accomplished by what is called a grounding block that bolts to the side of the house. Usually your antenna coax screws into one side and then the coax that goes inside screws to the other. This block must only be bonded to the house ground. Don't connect it to anything else like another grounding rod as this will cause a ground loop. If the house grounding rod is near there, then you can just connect it to that rod.

When you connect your antenna to the receiver the shield is grounded anyway via the power connection in the unit. The only purpose for #2 is to keep potential static buildup from being shunted through your receiver. The static is generated by wind passing over the antenna. Some say it gives lightening protection, but I'm dubious of that aspect of it.


The thing about antennas is this. You might find a lot of antennas that can receive what you want when the weather is nice and calm. The trick is to find an antenna that works when it's raining and the wind is blowing hard or something else changes throughout the year. This becomes more important when the station is at the fringes and far away.
Edited by blackcat6 - 1/10/14 at 5:57am
post #7138 of 7653
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

OK, I'll take your points in order......
  1. Yeah I know. My mom used to pick up a TV Guide at the Piggly Wiggly every week. Can't say that I really miss it. I like the on-screen guide better. As I've gotten older, using the pause button instead of waiting for the commercial is much preferable if I need to "go". smile.gif
  2. Ahh OK. It only proves my point in that the channel doesn't matter. I like the Walking Dead. What channel it's on doesn't matter to me anymore. If you don't like Amazon, you can also get it via Itunes and other similar services.
  3. Agreed. Dish Network once had a line item for broadcast locals, I think it was around $7/month and was no longer optional. IMO, its the entire reason for the decline in the quality of local programming. It will also be their undoing.
  4. I was speaking of American cable TV. It hasn't been watered down to appeal to the lowest common denominator.
post #7139 of 7653
Gale, I bet the balun on the old antenna probably has water in it. That will kill reception. When you install the new antenna, make sure you tape up with electrical tape or use the liquid sealant on the fittings to keep any moisture out and you will be set for many years of good service. Also don't forget the "drip loops"!
post #7140 of 7653
Speaking of Piggly Wiggly, I think they are about gone. Some are converting to BI-LO and some are changing to Harris Teeter. And speaking of Harris Teeter, I wish they would return to the Greenville-Spartanburg area. But they pulled out when Publix entered Upstate SC about 10 years ago. But to get back on topic, I see they are running Publix ads on the Charlotte TV channels now. So watch out HT. But I hear Kroger may be coming to the rescue.
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