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POLL: 91XG or CM4228 ????

post #1 of 60
Thread Starter 
This poll is to help me (and maybe anybody else) to decide between Antennas Direct's 91XG UHF yagi and Channel Master's CM4228 8-bay antenna.

I've broken the poll into four different votes so folks that have and haven't used the antenna can vote....some folks voting from "hands-on", while other's might want to vote on "technicals" or "reviews".

Thanks for the help!

Vote away!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ed
post #2 of 60
This should have been posted to the HDTV Hardware reception forum! You might get more responses there. Can one of the moderators move this please.
post #3 of 60
Doesn't really matter who's using what, it only depends on what works for your particular situation. I'm going to guess you'll find more people using the 4228 since it's cheaper and available from more places and is a solid long range UHF antenna. I have one myself.
post #4 of 60
I second Matt across the board. In addition to being more expensive, the 91XG's 8 ft. length is problematical for attics with trusses.
post #5 of 60
For outdoor use, on the other hand, the 91XG has physical advantages because it's lighter and doesn't seem to catch the wind as much as the sail-like 4228. Those are especially significant if you want to combine it with a separate VHF antenna as I plan to do.
post #6 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtbell View Post

For outdoor use, on the other hand, the 91XG has physical advantages because it's lighter and doesn't seem to catch the wind as much as the sail-like 4228. Those are especially significant if you want to combine it with a separate VHF antenna as I plan to do.

I have a 4228 and haven't had any trouble with this "sail" effect you speak of. OTOH, it seems like a longer boomed antenna would impart much more torsional stress on the mast in high wind conditions.
post #7 of 60
I didn't vote, because I have both. And they both perform nearly the same.

While the XG91 is lighter (5lbs compared to 15lbs), it's construction isn't as solid as the CM4228. Small tree branches have knocked off a couple of directors (deflectors?). The CM4228 can take a beating.

The XG91 is a little more directional than the CM4228, so take that into account for your needs, one way or another.
post #8 of 60
I my case, I expect the 91XG's directionality will be a plus because I do have problems in windy weather with distant stations because of trees. Also, some digital stations have co-channel interference from analog stations in opposite directions, so I can use a high front/back ratio. This problem will disappear in two years, of course.
post #9 of 60
Looks like a bit more assembly work than my current Radio Shack VHF/UHF combo! With that one, I think I just needed to swing out the VHF elements to the snap-in stops on their mounts, bolt the corner-reflector arms onto the UHF Yagi end, and attach the yoke or whatever it is that runs parallel to the boom.

It shouldn't be a problem, just so I allow enough time for assembly before putting it up.
post #10 of 60
The CM-4228 is a good performer, especially considering price as compared to the 91XG.
The 91XG appears to be nothing more than some imported parts from Funke.
post #11 of 60
Thread Starter 
Thanks everybody for your input so far. I understand there is no "magic bullet" antenna for all circumstances. I won't yet go into some of my thoughts because the poll has yet to be completed and my thoughts might "taint" the voter pool.

Ed
post #12 of 60
I use a 91XG and can receive digital from 80 miles regularly...I wish I had a 4228 to compare it to.
post #13 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse31 View Post

I use a 91XG and can receive digital from 80 miles regularly...

In order solely to keep this thread balanced and with no intentions to "taint" one way or the other, I use an attic 4228 and, with high elevation, greatly surpass Jesse's distance 24/7 solid.
post #14 of 60
Bill,
Analog or digital? On analog I too can go past 80 miles. If digital, you are saying that you can greatly surpass 80 miles?? Can anyone else receive a digital signal way past 80 miles with a 4228 on a daily basis?
post #15 of 60
I have the 91XG attached to a CM-7777 preamplifier. I live about 50 miles from the antenna farm. I have the 91XG on a tripod in an unused bedroom pointed out a window on the second floor. I live in a small to moderate sized city with other two story houses around but none directly in the path of the antenna.

I also have taken it out to a friends house outside of town about 10 miles further away from the towers. Just holding it outside his house pointed correctly (with the preamp), he received everything in UHF band with just a little breakup when I wasn't quite holding it still.

The only issue I've had with my setup is my cat playing in the room misaligning the antenna. If she moves it about 10 degrees, I lose one of the weaker stations completely and have dropouts on all the rest.

If I wasn't happy with it, I would have tried the CM-4228. Since I am happy with it (and the cat), I have not tried the CM-4228.
post #16 of 60
I ask again: "Can anyone else receive a digital signal way past 80 miles with a 4228 (in attic or on tower) on a daily basis?" I don't believe it so I'm calling BS bingo on that post. I'm not hung up on my installation...I'm hoping that the 4228 really does work that much better cause if it does then I'm buying one.
post #17 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick0725 View Post

The current cm4228 is not much different than the first one I installed back in the 60's. The original had a continuous screen if I recall. The screens on the current model need to be properly alligned out of box. It is also a good idea to attach the two screens with nylon ties.

Rick, how would one go aligning the screens? Mine were already attached to the antenna and overlap in the middle. Is it just a matter of lining up the grids and wire tying it together?
post #18 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse31 View Post

Bill,
Analog or digital? On analog I too can go past 80 miles. If digital, you are saying that you can greatly surpass 80 miles?? Can anyone else receive a digital signal way past 80 miles with a 4228 on a daily basis?

Both. From the attic with my house nearly 1800 ft. ASL, my 4228 pulls in solid 24/7 the 4 digital majors from DC at 125 miles and 2 and sometimes 3 and 4 digital majors from Richmond, VA at about 95 miles. Analog I'm the same, but only for hi-VHF and above. And I believe a search will confirm that other AVS members even exceed me with their 4228's -- Florida IIRC and other states.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick0725 View Post

you guys are too hung up on hdprimer and your own installation and circumstances.

Rick is exactly right and shame on me if I convey the impression others can do what I do. As they say, OTA reception is an enigma wrapped in a mystery surrounded by a conundrum. My terrific elevation probably excludes me from comparison to most members and if I've ever given the impression otherwise these past 4+ years, I'm plain stupid.

My point here, trying to reinforce Rick, is different things work for different locations and trail and error is a great rule to follow. This forum allows us to post our unique as well as humdrum experiences and woe betide me if I belittle other posters in any manner, shape, or form.

P.S. Jesse is not alone in his skepticism. Over the years, I've been periodically bruised a little here and so lay low a while. But I'm absolutely addicted to HD -- particularly football -- and this forum besides my religion; and I'll not ever fully understand my OTA reception, given the distance and those looming Blue Ridge Mountains.
post #19 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse31 View Post

I ask again: "Can anyone else receive a digital signal way past 80 miles with a 4228 (in attic or on tower) on a daily basis?" I don't believe it so I'm calling BS bingo on that post. I'm not hung up on my installation...I'm hoping that the 4228 really does work that much better cause if it does then I'm buying one.

I have a 4228 w/CM 7777 indoor mount on 2nd floor and lock DT station 72 miles away . I do have a homemade DB-2 that also lock DT station72 miles away, but my terrian is mostly flat. I will be moving next month and will be 10+ miles further out. I will have 4228 mounted in the attic there. When I have it up and running I will post it here if still open.
post #20 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse31 View Post

Bill,
Analog or digital? On analog I too can go past 80 miles. If digital, you are saying that you can greatly surpass 80 miles?? Can anyone else receive a digital signal way past 80 miles with a 4228 on a daily basis?

I had a CM-4228 and received Orlando stations at approximately 83 miles distance
24/7 with breakups only occuring during the day. I must add that i have also had
similar results with the Televes Dat-75, Winegard HD-9095 and PR-9032, Blake JBX21WB and the Triax Unix 100.
post #21 of 60
I receive digital stations 107 miles away with a cm-4221 in the attic with no preamp. The distance is not a problem if there are no obstructions inbetween and the antenna heights clear the curvature of the earth.
Here is the elevation profile from KCBS-DT which has an antenna at over 6500 feet.
LL
post #22 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick0725 View Post

ran into a neat gadget ...hdtv tuner with signal meter in db. anyone use one of these.

The OnAir GT from AutumnWave leads the mobile HDTV industry and allows consumers to receive Digital and Analog television broadcasts on-the-go.

The OnAir GT, together with its included software, allows consumers to watch and record television anywhere a useable 'over-the-air' or cable signal exists.

Miniature in size, the GT model fits easily in a laptop case and is USB-powered, requiring no external power supply. It incorporates the latest fifth-generation LG Electronics ATSC / NTSC / QAM (unencrypted) tuner and the nVidia PureVideo Decoder. Imagine HDTV on-the-go!


add to a laptop or desktop. there is your signal meter. 5th generation ntsc/atsc/qam. the brand I use did not have a signal meter in the software.

http://www.autumnwave.com/content/view/30/117/

user manual

http://www.autumnwave.com/component/...etails/gid,33/

I've had the OnAir GT for about a year. Great tuner! Love the ability to see the SNR in db's. Used that to place my antennas.

See this thread:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=695589
post #23 of 60
Thread Starter 
Just so I don't go chasing a rabbit down the wrong trail I've got a question about the output we get at www.antennaweb.org:

* yellow - uhf WSFA-DT 12.1 NBC MONTGOMERY AL 36° 20.1 14
* yellow - uhf WDFX-DT 33.1 FOX OZARK AL 132° 56.7 33
* yellow - uhf WBIH-DT 29 IND SELMA AL 335° 62.7 29
* yellow - uhf WAIQ-DT 26.1 PBS MONTGOMERY AL 7° 45.0 27
* yellow - uhf WAKA-DT 8.1 CBS SELMA AL 321° 38.0 55
* green - vhf WDIQ-DT 2.1 PBS DOZIER AL 192° 12.6 11
* lt green - uhf WBMM-DT 22 CW TUSKEGEE AL Now Available 48° 33.4 22
* red - uhf WRJM-DT 48 MNT TROY AL FCC Ext 48° 32.7 48
* red - uhf WNCF-DT 32.1 ABC MONTGOMERY AL 9° 44.2 51
* red - uhf WTVY-DT 4.1 CBS DOTHAN AL 149° 66.8 36
* red - uhf WGIQ-DT 43.1 PBS LOUISVILLE AL 93° 54.1 44
* blue - uhf WCOV-DT 20.1 FOX MONTGOMERY AL 7° 41.8 16
* violet - uhf WEAR-DT 3.1 ABC PENSACOLA FL 227° 108.7 17

Are the frequency assignments listed in the results the actual "final resting places" where the stations will be located?

Looking at my list of stations it appears I really don't need a VHF antenna...the only station that will stay in the VHF band will be in the high-end of the band and is the closest station to me.

Ed
post #24 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick0725 View Post

did a quick look and below are changing. there may be more

* green - vhf WDIQ-DT 2.1 PBS DOZIER AL 192° 12.6 11 back to ch2
* yellow - uhf WAKA-DT 8.1 CBS SELMA AL 321° 38.0 55 to ch 42

review the pdf. lists final assignments for 99.9% of the stations.

Thanks Rick. Looks like I'm good to go with UHF-only.

Channel 2 is a non-issue for me as it is PBS and 26.1 out of Montgmoery is, also. Channel 26.1 is also in the same direction as the bulk of the stations I'm stalking whereas Channel 2 is on the backside of the antenna.

Thanks again,
Ed

P.S. Looks like I'll be putting up my new UHF antenna today...it's a &i@!L2*^%!....johnbrown line-noise!!!!!!!
post #25 of 60
The net gain comparison at hdtvprimer shows the 4228 with higher gain on channels below channel 50. The 91XG has higher net gain above channel 50 but channels 52 to 69 will be going away in 2009.
post #26 of 60
Thread Starter 
Well, the poll has ended and it looks like a washout...except for one more vote for the 91XG by someone who liked the specs. Got some good discussion going though!

Well, today was a wreck.

I was excited about trying the CM4228 that I picked up. Early this afternoon I managed to get it in the air. Raising my antenna is a bit of a chore as I've got an old stand-alone mast with three quywires...I lower it by leaning the antenna into two of the wires and easing the base backwareds...a real workout for me.

Anyhow, I tried the CM4228 with and without the CM7777...without the pre-amp I got no signal at all, zilch. Checking reception after I put the CM7777 inline it seemed to actually have a narrower beam of reception than the Winegard 7082 had.

Tinkered with it a bit and just didn't like the way it was working. The coax cable was probably 7-8 years old and upon inspecting it found a nicked place showing shielding...I started to tape over it but decided to replace it with a roll of Phillips "quad shield" coax, which of course involves a nice crawl under the house. Got the new coax "pulled" and while I was at it pulled a couple of speaker wires under the floor. Crawled back out from under the house and hooked things up in the house.

The results? I can only pick up WSFA and it's two sub-channels where I was picking up twenty stations/substations earlier today and...I'm dog tired. I havent' a clue as to what happened...everything looks good.

If I get time tomorrow I'll drop the antenna and see if there's an obvious problem with a connection or something. The only thing I've changed has been the main coax cable (100', same as before) and I had to build a slightly longer patch cable to go between the 4228 and the 7777.

What a day.
Ed
post #27 of 60
Thread Starter 
Update:

I pulled the antenna down yesterday and checked all of the connections. The only one that looked questionable was the end of the Phillips quad-shield cable. Seems the dielectic around the center pin wasn't cleaned up very well during it's removal. There was a fine film of plastic going up almost half the length of the center pin. I cleaned this up.

Powering everything up it looks like my reception has improved from the single station to several. The channels seem to be coming in solidly...a couple are coming from acute angles off the front, I'm picking up channel 2 (PBS) from the backside, and channel 4 (CBS-Dothan) off the back of the right-hand side. I even added channel 48 (WFBD-Destin, FL....not WRJM in Troy) which more or less comes in on the far righthand side of the back of the antenna. But, I'm still missing 26 (PBS) and 45 (TBN) which I was getting earlier, are 10 miles closer than 48, and are actually the stations that should be directly in front of the antenna. ???? Weird how they won't come in but 48 slips in from the backside.

Anyhow, reception is better than it was Saturday evening, I won't make a judgement call on the antenna yet as I really haven't been able to play around much with adjusting it's bearing very much. We'll see...

Ed
post #28 of 60
My 4228 experience was the opposite of Ed's. With the 7777 I couldn't get zilch, but without it reception was barely so-so. So I put a CM 3044 dist. amp near the antenna and, voila, the rest is history as they say. But as always, YMMV!!
post #29 of 60
for those who want to try the 91xg, but don't want to spend as much.
try the jaycar LT3182 jaycarelectronics $40. U.S. and shipping was only a little over $7. to illinois. it's almost identical to the 91xg , the only difference is the driven element. the jaycar has a larger x type instead of the loop. same amount of elements per section.

I did add some glue to the elements and plastic clips. if I could find a local seller of the 4228 I would try it. another one I might try is the AntennaCraft Super G 1483
8 bay.
post #30 of 60
Thread Starter 
Well, one thing I'm certain of...I've gotta figure out a different mast arrangement so that I can make changes, etc, more easily with the antenna. I'm using an old (very old) rusty mast (may have been a small antenna mast on the Titanic) that is basically locked in it's extended position at about 20'. It is supported by three guy wires attached to t-posts...and I basically walk it up and walk it down.

We had a ~40' tower that was installed at the house when we moved in. I dropped it about a year ago as one of the legs had completely rusted out and I figured a "controlled fall" was better than an uncontrolled one ...it had a massive, circa 1965 antenna mounted on top of it. I had in the past used that antenna some and hanging on the top of that tower was, well, exciting (and somewhat stupid towards the end of it's use. ). I acquired a few other sections of tower a while back and I may re-install this tower...just don't know if I want to go to the trouble of pouring the concrete or not and I seriously doubt I'll go back up 40'. I'll probably end up going with a CM1630 or 1620 telescoping mast if I can find one.

Rick, I do have a Channel Master 9521A rotor that I want to install, but I'd rather have the mast situation taken care of first. I'm curious as to how this rotor will handle the CM4228. I feel pretty sure I need to get an alignment bearing to support the antenna...good idea?

Is there a meter that doesn't cost an arm and a leg that can be used to check signal quality/strength at the antenna? My Samsung DTB-H260F receiver has it's signal meter which I think shows a combination of quality and power.

One last thing, yagis and bow-tie antennas are spoken of and used predominately for OTA reception of televsion signals. Does anyone use quads for tv? Back when I was an active ham it seemed the quad had an edge on the others...biggest issue was being bulky. With the frequencies we're working at the size of a quad woulnd't be very big. Best antenna I ever had was a full-wave loop on 40 meters...talked to west/northwest coast, east coast, and SA running qrp and cw at 1.5w. The quad is a glorified hybrid loop/yagi. Maybe I'm thinking to hard.

Ed
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