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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I live in the Fort Walton Beach, FL area and I'm looking to cut the cord from Cox Cable. I would post my TVFool report but I'm unable to post images or weblinks until I get 5 posts. My zip code is 32569 which is technically Mary Esther, FL, a suburb of Fort Walton Beach.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Additional information, I'm a rookie when it comes to getting over the air TV signals, been with cable for over 20 years but tired of the constant increases in prices. I'm a Computer Support Lead so I'm not scared of technology. I currently have Amazon Fire HD in addition to Cox Cable. I'm looking for the best Outdoor Antenna I can buy without breaking the bank but not looking for cheap by any means. I'll save over $100 a month once I make the switch so I'm ready, just want to learn all I can before I make the leap. Thanks in advance for your help!
 

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Based on your TVFool results you are going to need an antenna with decent high VHF coverage to get your FOX channel. Something like an HBU 55 or a Y10-7-13 combined with a UHF antenna like a CM4221.
John
 

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Skip that particular Winegard antenna.

Getting a Fox station is going to be VERY problematic.

You have two Fox stations in the area. WALA is 70 miles away towards Mobile and WPGX is 73 miles away in nearly opposite direction. And, just to make things more difficult, they're both on VHF channel 9. Can anyone say "short-spaced" or "co-channel interference"? Given that you're in a built up area, the elevated noise floor on VHF may make reception of either station impossible, even with the big 10 element VHF Yagi.

The rest of your stations towards Mobile are UHF and should be readily received with even a modest UHF antenna.
 

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I looked at your terrain plot to WALA and there are no hills in the way, just the curvature of the Earth because of distance. If you're willing to get an antenna up in the air to clear as much of the local vegetation as possible and use a preamp such as the Clearstream Juice that has a good noise figure on VHF you might have a chance. It's impossible to say for sure. My guess is that it'll be one of those stations that's not receivable 100% of the time. Either the Winegard HD7698P or the Antennacraft HBU55 would be a good choice. They have good VHF sections and are good enough on UHF for those stronger stations.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Thank you everyone for your input so far. So Fox is my headache, go figure. I have a couple of questions. So I'm looking at the 2 antennas Calaveras recommended and they have boom lengths of 145" and 168" respectively. At 12-14 feet in length is it possible to mount these in a way you can turn them remotely? Will I ever need to turn it? Maybe this isn't such a good idea, mounting a big antenna on or near my house might be a problem. I guess I'll have to do some more research. Be nice if Fox converted to UHF, I think that would make things easier.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Here is a picture of the back of my house. I guess I could mount an antenna pole in the back right corner of my house and bolt it down to my patio and secure it to the house. My cable goes into the house around the right corner near the power meter you should be able to see, that is how I would go into the house with my antenna feed. So what's a good recommendation for pole to mount an antenna to? I live near the coast and we get those wonderful tropical storms/hurricanes on occasion so I'd like to make it strong enough to handle at the least the weaker storms.
 

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Thank you everyone for your input so far. So Fox is my headache, go figure. I have a couple of questions. So I'm looking at the 2 antennas Calaveras recommended and they have boom lengths of 145" and 168" respectively. At 12-14 feet in length is it possible to mount these in a way you can turn them remotely? Will I ever need to turn it? Maybe this isn't such a good idea, mounting a big antenna on or near my house might be a problem. I guess I'll have to do some more research. Be nice if Fox converted to UHF, I think that would make things easier.
Fox on UHF at that distance would be even weaker. High VHF does a better job at the fringes if you have a good antenna.

You don't need to rotate it unless you want to receive those stations around 90 degrees. They make antenna rotors for that. That's another discussion.
 

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Here is a picture of the back of my house. I guess I could mount an antenna pole in the back right corner of my house and bolt it down to my patio and secure it to the house. My cable goes into the house around the right corner near the power meter you should be able to see, that is how I would go into the house with my antenna feed. So what's a good recommendation for pole to mount an antenna to? I live near the coast and we get those wonderful tropical storms/hurricanes on occasion so I'd like to make it strong enough to handle at the least the weaker storms.
I see some tall trees in the background but the foliage looks rather thin so hopefully if the stations have to pass through those trees it won't be a problem.

There are lots of choices for mounting the antenna. The strongest ones are some sort of tower but of course those are rather expensive. You could get a Rohn 40' telescoping mast and only push it up 20' so that the sections overlap. That would make it stronger.

http://www.dxengineering.com/search...coping-masts?gclid=CLCfsKCw5MQCFQhqfgods4QAMw
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Calaveras I really appreciate the help and pointers. The trees in the picture are directly North of my house so in getting the signals from Mobile I shouldn't have to go through them. Eventually I plan on moving and when I do everything I'm learning here will go into where I decide to move to. The good thing about living in coastal area is it's pretty flat, the bad part is it's low. I like the idea of the telescoping antennas, I can have them at their max height and if a storm comes I can lower the antenna. Typically we get a couple days notice of a tropical system making landfall.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Based on your TVFool results you are going to need an antenna with decent high VHF coverage to get your FOX channel. Something like an HBU 55 or a Y10-7-13 combined with a UHF antenna like a CM4221.
John

Thanks for the advice John. I do have a question based on what you said. So if I get a VHF and separate UHF antenna how do I bring both signals together into my house and TV's? I have multiple TV's so I'd want to send both signals to all the TV's if that's possible.
 

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Thanks for the advice John. I do have a question based on what you said. So if I get a VHF and separate UHF antenna how do I bring both signals together into my house and TV's? I have multiple TV's so I'd want to send both signals to all the TV's if that's possible.
Use a UHF/VHF diplexer (aka UHF/VHF signal joiner). They're cheap and low loss but will increase the system noise figure a bit when you use a preamp. There is one preamp available today with separate VHF/UHF inputs: RCA TVPRAMP1R. The problem is it doesn't have a very good noise figure on VHF which is why I think the HD7698P and Clearstream Juice preamp is a better combination for you. Currently there are no really good VHF only antennas available unless you find one of the discontinued models or are willing to build something. Separates are a good choice when you need a high gain UHF antenna and something average on VHF. It's not so good when you have the opposite situation like you do.

Distribution amps are available to split the signal in the house without loss.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Boy I wish I could try different antennas without having to purchase them! Maybe you guys can help me. Here are links to the 3 I think I've narrowed it down to. I'm not an antenna guy yet so I'm stilling learning what the gain numbers mean. What would be my best bet based on the 3 antennas listed below and why? While you guys look at it I'm going to go online and see what more I can learn so I can understand your answers better!


http://www.channelmaster.com/Digital_HDTV_Outdoor_TV_Antenna_p/cm-3020.htm


http://www.antennacraft.net/pdfs/HBU55_.pdf


http://www.winegarddirect.com/viewi...inum-Series-VHFUHF-HDTV-Antenna(HD7698P)&post=
 

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Boy I wish I could try different antennas without having to purchase them! Maybe you guys can help me. Here are links to the 3 I think I've narrowed it down to. I'm not an antenna guy yet so I'm stilling learning what the gain numbers mean. What would be my best bet based on the 3 antennas listed below and why? While you guys look at it I'm going to go online and see what more I can learn so I can understand your answers better!


http://www.channelmaster.com/Digital_HDTV_Outdoor_TV_Antenna_p/cm-3020.htm


http://www.antennacraft.net/pdfs/HBU55_.pdf


http://www.winegarddirect.com/viewi...inum-Series-VHFUHF-HDTV-Antenna(HD7698P)&post=

You don't want the 3020 because all those large elements are for low VHF (channels 2-6) and you don't have any of those. The other two antennas are roughly equal.

I ran a generic FM Fool report for your town and there are a bunch of super strong signals. You will need a full band FM trap placed before the preamp to reduce those very strong signals. The second harmonic from WNCV falls in channel 9 and can destroy reception. You should run your FM Fool report for your exact address and post the image for us. Links don't work for FM Fool.

https://www.antennasdirect.com/store/FM_band_rejection_filter.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Well what do you guys think of the link below, seems like they tested a lot of Antennas but no surprise their Antenna won!


http://www.dennysantennaservice.com/best-tv-antenna.html


Anybody have experience with the HD Stacker? Searching for reviews there seems to be a lot of people that like it and then people who have never owned it who attack the people who like it.
 

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None of Denny's antennas are a match for your location.

I'd stick with a two antenna system rather than a 14' long combo Your odds of getting VHF 9 are particularly poor, so it makes sense to get an antenna that can be returned if it doesn't work out without affecting the rest of your project. If you get the combo, you're stuck with a 14' antenna whether it does any good or not. Try to get a 10-element Antennacraft while they last, mount it at the top of your mast. Mount something like a DB4e several feet under it. Get two FM filters in series between the AC and a UVSJ, then feed the combined input into the Juice. That's probably as good as it's going to get.
 
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