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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here is my situation. I'm moving from a good reception area (Silver Spring,MD) according to Antennaweb (all DTV channels Yellow) to one with hard to pick up reception (All DTV Channels are Red for Bethesda/Chevy Chase). The wierd thing is according to a webpage with the tower locators (bsexton?), it shows my location as being 1-2 miles aways from all the DC transmitters (as opposed to being 15-20 miles from Silver Spring).


Why does Antenna Web recommend a medium directional Antenna?

Would buying a big UHF antenna like the Channel Master 4228 be bad?


I may have to try and stick the antenna in the attic because the place I'm buying is a Townhouse Condo which forbids outside antennas (unless I put it on the patio as the FCC says I can) and I not sure that I have that much space in the attic if any (cannot access inside the townhouse). What would you guys recommend?


Thanks in advance
 

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It's the same as with car batteries

Get the biggest one that you can fit in the "Hole"

In your case the hole is the attic


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Studio Broadcast Engineer

KET
 

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Can't a BIG antenna generate too much signal? Isn't too much signal also bad? I've always thought that an antenna was alot like the goldie lox and three bears, you need one thats just right. Randy
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Randy Lorenz:
Can't a BIG antenna generate too much signal? Isn't too much signal also bad? I've always thought that an antenna was alot like the goldie lox and three bears, you need one thats just right. Randy


It's possible if you are next to the transmitter tower, but generally not. The bigger, the better. Where people get into trouble with too much gain is when amplifiers are used where they are not really needed.
 

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If you really, really have too much gain from just the antenna without a preamp, you could use a variable attenuator to reduce the signal strength. Of course, if you're getting that strong of a signal you could probably get by with a radioshack double bowtie or a pair of rabbit ears.


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Let me get this straight, this show is hi-def and 5.1, but my local affiliate makes it crappy NTSC and mono?!
 

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I recently tried all these fancy (expensive) antennas from Terk, etc. with little or no success. I went to radio shack and purchased a big, ugly, $49 antenna and just placed it in the attic and now I can pick up all my locals with no problem. No preamp and it works great, it is a good thing it is in the attic because it is ugly.


OTA HDTV is awesome though.
 

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Hi, I am in Bethesda but close to the DC stations and get excellent reception with a CM4221 in my attic. However, I recently discovered that I can also get excellent reception (80+ signal strength on all channels with my DTC100) using a small (7"x4"),cylindrical antenna called the Xium, which I keep behind the TV set. It is available from the Technoscout.com catalog (just do a search for Xium). I also found that combining 2 of them (with a simple Radio Shack splitter/combiner) allows me to receive steady signals from all DC stations without any fiddling. With the CM4221, I do have to rotate the antenna to get WETA (27.2) clearly. You may want to test out the Xium before installing the major hardware.


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TJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks all. Of course...more recommendation are welcome. http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/smile.gif


TJ, I think I may try that Xium (in a month when I move in). On the box for the Xium, was there any color reception ratings on the box (i.e. Yellow, Light Green, Dark Green, Red, Blue, Violet, White)? Have you tried the Xium by itself (if so what was it like?)?

 

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Hi, Yes, I do use the Xium by itself. I disconnect my attic antenna feed and connect the Xium (2 of them actually) because, as I mentioned, I can then receive all of the HD stations without moving them around or fiddling (like with the old days of rabbit ears). I don't understand the color rating question, please explain.


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TJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
TJ,


Some new antennas come with a rating on the box from the CEA (Consumer Electronics Association). You can check it out on www.antennaweb.org under more_info but I will give you a quick summary here of what type of antenna is need:


Small Multi-directional Antenna: Yellow

Medium Multi-directional Antenna: Yellow, Green

Large Multi-directional: Yellow, Green, Light Green

Small Directional: Yellow, Green, Light Green

Medium Directional: Yellow, Green, Light Green, Red

Large Directional: Yellow, Green, Light Green, Red, Blue,

Violet, Pink.

(White they say is you better get Cable or Satellite).


The Rockville, Bethesda, Chevy Chase side of Maryland shows the least rating to pick up channels are in the red area. All the DTV channels for DC and Baltimore are listed as RED in the Bethesda/Chevy Chase area (as opposed to Silver Spring which is yellow).The description for Medium Directional Antenna is that its "Most popular rooftop antenna because of its modest size and ghost reducing characteristics". It basically says to get good reception you must have a rooftop antenna (but I guess you have proven that wrong). Not only antennaweg.org said that those channels are in the red zone, Titantv.com said I need a Medium Directional Antenna.


I just wanted to see if they rate the Xium as high as Red.


You get any Baltimore channels?
 

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tjames,


do you actually use both antennae at the same time with the splitter/combiner, or is it more of a switch? I only ask because I've read of some treacherous times people have had trying to use two antennae at once. The common explanation is that the antennae must be separated by a precise fraction of the wavelength being received. The problem as I understand it is that if you just place two antennae near each other and try to get the "double gain" of putting them on the same wire, they often produce interfering signals because one will receive the signal some fraction of the wavelength offset. So if they are 1/2 wavelength apart in the direction of transmission, then you could end up with fully destructive interference (ie. killing the signal entirely, the peaks from one antenna exactly meet with the valleys of the other signal, cancelling each other out).


I've never experienced it myself, so I have no empirical idea of how this affects the practical world.


jake
 

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Can someone point me to some more information on when these "big ugly" antennas can be placed in an attic? The main part of the house doesn't have an attic but there is space above the garage. I'd like to avoid something on a tall mast, if at all possible - it would severely clash with the look of the house. Like others I have tried a fancy Terk with little/no success. There is a line of trees between me and the towers (but they are all within 5-6 miles from here).


Could use any advice!



[This message has been edited by Stele (edited 10-05-2001).]
 

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Hi 'Got HDTV': I use the Xium model XM2000, multidirectional, all frequency spilateral antenna, as the box says. There is no color rating on the box, but they claim that it is good for 65 miles. I guess this distance is for when it is mounted outside your house but I doubt it. I actually get stronger signal readings with my attic mounted CM4221 than with the Xium, however it is the convenience that I appreciate because, with a pair of Xiums placed horizontally (the seemingly better multi- directional placement for an Xium) on the window ledge behind my tv, I can get all of the DC channels without any antenna rotating etc. As background I should mention that using the CM4221 (or 1Xium) I can receive all of the DC HDTV channels except PBS at one antenna position.

Note that I do not receive the Baltimore channels with my attic antenna nor with the Xium; I think this may be due at least partly to a large house on a rise that blocks my line-of-sight to Baltimore.


For Jakehall: I know about the difficulties of antenna spacing. My 2 Xiums (or is it Xia in the plural?), combined via the RShack splitter/combiner, with no respect for wavelength and distance criteria, seem to increase signal strengh enough on my weakest channel (PBS) to provide stable all HD channel reception. I can receive PBS with a single Xium or my attic mounted CM4221 but I have to set either one just for this station. However, the combined Xiums do not make any significant difference for the stronger channels. I am not sure how replicable these results may be for others. You simply have to experiment with indoor antenna placements.

I would also like to know if anyone has tested the Xium at medium to long distances from broadcaster's towers.


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TJ
 
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