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Discussion Starter #1
Deciding that it will take quite some time for NY to get back on it's feet with all the HD/DTV stations broadcasting again, I opted to get an antenna rotator (CM 9521)with the goal of picking up New Haven, CT's ABC affiliate WTNH-DT (58 miles) from here in the Bronx. A bonus would have been anything from Trenton, NJ (64 miles) or Philadelphia, PA (80 miles).


I managed to get about a signal strength of 10 yesterday evening from WTNH on my Sony HD-100- not enough to lock it in and watch it. NJ and PA are just too far I guess.


I'm using a Radio Shack VU-90 XR (purchased when I felt I wouldn't need to receive much further than the WTC) mounted on my roof with a clear, unobstructed view and I currently have a Radio Shack DA (15-1168) to split my signal inside to multiple sources, which include analog OTA TVs, my HD-100 (analog and digital) and my FM receiver.


I'm looking for suggestions as to what I can do to pick up the New Haven station. I'm not against changing antennas, but can't build a tower. I'm thinking an amp, but I want to be sure that simply installing a rooftop amp won't interfere with my WCBS-DT and WNEW-DT reception from just about 10 miles away (also WNYE-DT from about 15 miles). Another option might be a second antenna that would get the amp and rotor, but can the signals simply be combined or will that cause all kinds of other problems?


Thanks,

Dave
 

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I would highly suggest a preamplifier, installed before the splitter. One possible source is from www.starkelectronic.com. Many people recommend the CM7775. If you still need a little more signal you could invest in one of the big bad Channel Master UHF antennas. $ for $ you cant beat a preamp, assuming multipath is not a problem.
 

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Wait a minute. Your doing VHF too? Use one of the other CM preamps that include VHF, like the 7778. If your DTV stations are REALLY strong they could overpower the preamp too. If this is the case you could potentially turn the antenna away from the strong stations somewhat to reduce the gain. Depends on the directions of all your stations...
 

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If you REALLY want to try to pull in the far away stations, the BEST thing is a bigger antenna, then followed by the pre-amp suggestions. I would suggest one of the larger antennas from here http://www.starkelectronic.com/allant.htm . The pre-amps can only help when there is signal to begin with. Best of luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I think this is what I'd like to do:


Get second antenna for UHF only (the CM 3023) and add a pre-amp to that. Then point my VHF/UHF/FM antenna at the Empire State Building and use a power passive combiner/splitter to combine both signals down the line to my HD-100.


I think that since they will be pointing in different directions without many buildings in the way, multipath shouldn't be a problem.


Does this configuration sound like it will cause me any trouble?


Dave
 

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"Get second antenna for UHF only (the CM 3023) and add a pre-amp to that. Then point my VHF/UHF/FM antenna at the Empire State Building and use a power passive combiner/splitter to combine both signals down the line to my HD-100. "


If you're trying for WTNH, shouldn't you point the VHF/UHF/FM antenna (with a preamp added) towards New Haven and then have a separate UHF-only antenna pointed at the ESB stations?

I'm attempting to get WTNH...although I'm a lot closer, I do not have height/clear line of sight. In addition, I would need to get a combo antenna and replace my preamp, and add a rotator which doesn't seem worth it.


Does anyone know if you point a UHF-only antenna with a UHF-only preamp at a VHF station, is it possible to pick up some signal? I just want to see if it's possible to get WTNH at all.
 

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Yes...it is. But can a UHF antenna pick up a VHF signal...even if it's of very low signal strength. I'm trying to determine if I can get a digital signal of even low strength from WTNH before I go out and get a whole new antenna, preamp, and rotor by just repositioning my UHF antenna. Another Forum member in the next town over from me gets WTNH using a CM4248...plus he says the antenna is facing towards NYC.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by CJArciola, III
But can a UHF antenna pick up a VHF signal...even if it's of very low signal strength.
I have a Radio Shack 15-2160 UHF only antenna installed in the rafters over my garage. I don't have any pre-amp right now. Testing with analog VHF signals, I can get a snowy signal on channel 7, watchable signal on channels 9 and 11 while channel 13 is crystal clear. Channels 4 and 5 have nothing but static. I am about 15 miles from the transmitters. Thus, it would appear that a UHF antenna does work to some degree on VHF stations, at least in the VHF high range.
 

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davebach,


I would recommend seperate UHF and VHF antennas in your situation.You could use a VHF-only pre-amp for Ch10 such as a CM7776,then combine both into a passive combiner.Your UHF signals are probably too strong to pre-amp.


You could use the combo antenna for VHF if you remove the UHF section.Otherwise, it will likely mess up your UHF reception.A better antenna would be a cut-to-channel Winegard CC-3190 for Ch10,available from Stark Electronics($21 plus frt.).


On the subject of using a UHF antenna for VHF,most UHF antennas will work for the Highband channels(7-13) if the transmitters are close,you just have to point the antenna at some oblique angle for best reception.


Also,when using a UHF pre-amp on a UHF antenna,no VHF signals will be present-the pre-amp cuts everything off below Ch14.


BTW,if anyone needs a VHF pre-amp,I've got a CM7776 I'm not using at present and could be had for $40 incl.shipping.
 

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I added a small Cm antenna to my uhf setup To pull this one in, I am only 28miles (across the sound) from WTNH. I had previously installed the Cm7777 pre-amp and just connected the VHF lead to the appropriate input. The panny does the rest.

Allthough all my DT stations were In NYC, my original installation included a rotator and the above vhf/uhf pre-amp. Except for the new antanna, this was an easy upgrade (for once!).

gebstr83
 

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Discussion Starter #13
You know, I failed to realize that WTNH-DT 10 was VHF! I guess the fact that they were broadcasting on channel 10 never clicked... I just thought all DTV was in the UHF band.


Well, I'm going to try to get WTNH tomorrow with the combo antenna and the VHF/UHF amp that came today. Would have been nice to try this for NYPD Blue's premiere tonight, but it's too durn dark already to go up on the roof.


What problems could I have if I swing the combo antenna & amp around to the ESB? Will the amp over-power or damage anything? Will it be obvious if I look at my TV that the signal is way too strong?


The cut-to-channel that MAX HD mentions is a good idea too, perhaps it, combined with the VHF/UHF/FM, may ultimately be the answer.


Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I added a CM 7778 to the mix and I'm getting WTNH-DT 10 on my HD-100 with a strength of 82 from 58 miles... but the receiver will not lock, so I can't view it. Analog WTNH 8 is fairly clear. It has noise, but no ghosts. It doesn't look like co-channel noise, but when the antenna is pointing to Hamden, CT the ESB is almost 180 degrees behind it- I suppose that could be an issue. It's a herringbone pattern, but I don't think this is an FM problem- I've tried it with an FM trap.


Max HD, will the 7776 you have FS pass UHF? I originally went with the 7778 to help me out with WNYE in UHF as well- and since it was not as powerful as the 7777 I figured it wouldn't blow-out my UHF too much (it didn't). If I step up to the 7778 I may overpower my locals, but now that I'm so close to a good signal I feel like I still want to try this with one antenna before moving on to a route that involves an amped VHF and an unamped (or slightly amped) UHF on separate antennas. I don't know know if a cut-to-channel is best now either because I don't think it will help with gain.


Dave
 

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Dave,


To answer your question-no-the 7776 will not pass UHF.


I checked the RS website and it shows your VU-90XR has 5.9db gain on highband VHF and 6.4 avg.gain on UHF.I think a 2 antenna setup would work the best in your situation.


The cut-to-channel has around 11db gain which would help considerably.Also has a much higher F/B ratio.The one I use works better for a DT-9 and DT-10 in my area than a CM3610B (large VHF model).


A good UHF model in your case would be a 4-bay bowtie like the CM3021(cheap).


These antennas would have minimal windload and only need around 3ft. of seperation.


You could pre-amp the UHF (the7778 has seperate inputs,doesn't it?).If it does overload,you could put an attenuator inline,between the antenna and the pre-amp input to tone things down a bit.


Also,you're not still using the distribution amp along with the pre-amp,are you?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Max HD,


I will order the cut-to-channel and try that next. I'm going to put it on a separate mast 20 feet away and combine the signal with my combo antenna before it goes to the amp (I have found that the amp is really helping my local analog VHF signals look fantastic). I'm hoping that this gives me the best of all worlds.


And no, I'm not using the DA anymore- the signal is strong enough to feed all my sources.


BTW, the signal that I reported as an 82 in strength on Wednesday fell to no greater than 35 on Thursday and no greater than 70 tonight... looks like atmospheric conditions will be my enemy during this long range endeavour.


Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I added the Winegard cut-to-channel to my roof today. Joining the antennas has prooved troublesome, but with the channel 10 antenna and the pre-amp (and no VHF/UHF/FM anntenna in the mix) I have finally locked in WTNH-DT 10 on my HD-100.


The signal locks at 70 ot of 100 on the digital receiver. Currently, it's not dipping below 70, but the odd thing is that when it jumps to about 85 (which is happening frequently right now) the HD-100 is unlocking and losing the signal/picture.


Can anyone guess what is happening here?


If I can solve this issue, I'm just going to run a separate cable for the antenna.
 

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Dave,


Sorry I didn't get back with you sooner.Joining those antennas won't work.They will just interfere with each other.That's why I suggested you go with the cut-to-channel,add a seperate UHF antenna a few feet above that,and eliminate the combo antenna altogether.The Ch-10 antenna should still do a fair job of pulling in your local VHF channels.


Can't comment on the signal strength problem.Station problem?
 
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