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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, a few months ago I bought a RCA ANT751 OTA antenna to see what I could catch. My tvFool is:

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...81a39c87ddef80


I liked what I saw, and decided to get an antenna for my Father-In-Law for Christmas (I know, cheezy, but he recently moved and can't get his old channels via DirecTV). Went with the Winegard HD7694P. Since their prices are very similar, I thought a comparison would be nice. Before getting into my data, my setup is as follows:


The antennas were mounted in my attic near the highest ridge. This equals about 40 ft above street level (South Louisiana=houses built on top of mounds of dirt--lessons learned from hurricanes
). Roof is wood beams, plywood, then paper and asphalt shingles. Both antennas were mounted at about 70 degrees (If you check out my tvfool, that's where my channels of interest are located at). 70 degrees would put it facing one of the longer asphalt shingle sides. From there its about 40 ft of quad-shield rg-6 through the wall to my outlet. From the outlet its a short lead of more rg-6 to a 2/1 coax switch (found much less loss from this than a splitter). One lead goes to my DirecTv AM-21, the other goes straight to my TV a Samsung UN55B7000WF. Data on channels caught will be from both the AM-21 and TV.


All signal strength is purely numeric based on the tuner. Now, the raw data:

ANT751 on AM-21
WBRZ 97%
KATC 100
WAFB 88
KLFY 87
KADN 100
KLPB 100
WVLA 79
WLPB 67
KLWB 100
WGMB 49
HD7694P on AM-21
WBRZ 100%
KATC 92
WAFB 85
KLFY 100
KADN 71
KLPB 80
WVLA 80
WLPB 80
KLWB 90
WGMB 54
ANT751 on TV
WBRZ 100%
KATC 100
KXKWCA (analog station) not caught
KPLC 40
WAFB 100
KLFY 100
KADN 100
KLPB 100
KXKWLD 50
WVLA 100
WLPB 60
KAJN 100
WBMB 40
KLAF (analog) clear
KBTV (analog) fuzzy
KLWB 100
HD7694P on TV
WBRZ 100%
KATC 100
KXKWCA (analog station) slightly snowy
KPLC 20
WAFB 100
KLFY 100
KADN 100
KLPB 100
KXKWLD 30
WVLA 100
WLPB 80
KAJN 70
WGMB 50
KLAF (analog) very snowy
KBTV (analog) not caught
KLWB 100

And to satisfy my curiosity, I pointed the HD7694P due west:

ANT751 on TV
WBRZ 10%
KATC 100
KXKWCA (analog station) very clear
KPLC 100
WAFB 50
KLFY 100
KADN 100
KLPB 100
KXKWLD50
WVLA 20
WLPB not caught
KAJN 100
WGMB not caught
KLAF (analog) clear
KBTV (analog) not caught
KLWB 100

I didn't test the ANT751 west, just wanted to see if the bigger antenna would pick more channels up. The HD7694P did not...


Finally, the ultimate comparison. A bare coax not connected to an antenna(to my surprise I caught a few channels
) It was just laying there in the attic along a few support beams.

KATC 100%
KLFY 30
KADN 100
KLPB 40
KXKWLD 10
KLAF (analog) fuzzy
KLWB 100

Some things that may throw a wrench in my findings: The ANT751 had lots of room "to breathe" as it is SIGNIFICANTLY smaller than the HD7694P. 65" length compared to 35". At times some elements of the HD7694P came close to the wood beams (although care was taken to ensure it did not touch during my test). Weather appears to not have been an issue; A cold front passed through the area yesterday, and all stations caught were in the same high as I was. Also, just the fact that it was mounted in my attic has probably skewed the results. There is no large objects around the mount, except for the hot water heater and A/C unit (but both are about 10 feet below the mount).


Considering the size of the HD7694P, I'm not very impressed. The ANT751 at times outperforms the much larger, heavier unit. It also appears the HD7694P is much more directional.


Also, Samsung's OTA tuner appears to be superior to the AM-21 (although the DirecTV unit does split the signal into 2 tuners).


And if anyone is interested in getting the SWS2081W/27 Philips UHF VHF FM 18dB Signal Amplifier with Return Path, don't waste your time or money. I got higher signals without than with. I should have expected so with a Walmart product.


Forgive the length of the thread, and hope the information can be of use to someone in the market for an OTA antenna.


Brad
 

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Wow, thanks for taking the time to compare the two antennas and the time to report to the forum!
Very interesting results. I've used the EZ HD antenna (very similar but not exactly same as Ant751) at my home. I would have expected the 7694 to beat the ant751 with your UHF channels but to be fairly similar with VHF channels.


I opened your tvfool link. You have an interesting array of stations around your home and appears that you could have used multiple aiming points to compare the antenna. IE, I would expect them to compare differently if taking the signal from the side rather than a direct aim. If the antennas are still up there, it may be worth a retest with aiming at 330 degrees, 3 degrees, and 70 degrees.


Very interesting and thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
For those that can't get to my TVfool:




I would retest, but I folded all the elements of the HD7694P back in--a task more difficult than I imagined...


After Christmas I'll update the thread with my findings from my father-in-law's house.
 

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Because of differences in beamwidth, the comparison should really be made with channels near the 70 degree orientation. The 7694p is better on RF 25 (80 vs 60). Other channels (RF 9,13,34) peg at 100. Retest using an attenuator to check for differences.
 

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Keep in mind that the so-called "signal strength" meters in most TV and converter boxes produce numbers that are based more on signal quality (error rate) than on signal strength (power). This alone makes any antenna comparison using this tool as the sole metric largely irrelevant and close to useless.


If you're going to compare net gains of antennas, you need something that measures the signal power, ie, a spectrum analyzer or a signal power level meter.


IOW, you've put in a nice effort, but the reported results aren't useful except as an anecdote.
 

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My new LG 50PK750 plasma has a dual signal strength meter; one that indicates signal strength%, the other signal quality%, which is indeed more useful for OTA viewers adjusting antennas. And the RCA Ant 751 is made by Winegard and distributed by Audiovox, so it is indeed a well made compact HiVHF/UHF antenna. Used to be sold at Walmart; still sold at HHGregg, Fry's, and I believe Lowe's. Probably better price from online vendors.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProjectSHO89 /forum/post/19610792


Keep in mind that the so-called "signal strength" meters in most TV and converter boxes produce numbers that are based more on signal quality (error rate) than on signal strength (power). This alone makes any antenna comparison using this tool as the sole metric largely irrelevant and close to useless.


If you're going to compare net gains of antennas, you need something that measures the signal power, ie, a spectrum analyzer or a signal power level meter.


IOW, you've put in a nice effort, but the reported results aren't useful except as an anecdote.

I disagree. I routinely test different antennas using margin to dropout (dB). Signal strength on my Apex 502 meter is highly correlated with margin to dropout (rsquared=0.99). Signal meters on my LG tv and zenith converter box are also clearly related to margin to dropout (ie, signal bar decreases as attenuators are added between tv and antenna). Further, I have excellent correlations between margin to dropout and signal strength on SLM. Are the relationships true for the OP? We don't know and it is not fair nor accurate to say there is no relationship until it has been proven that their is no relationship. JMO.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC /forum/post/19610879


... the RCA Ant 751 is made by Winegard and distributed by Audiovox, so it is indeed a well made compact HiVHF/UHF antenna. Used to be sold at Walmart; still sold at HHGregg, Fry's, and I believe Lowe's. Probably better price from online vendors.

40 bucks with free shipping on amazon. Price includes the J-mount bracket.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC /forum/post/19610879


My new LG 50PK750 plasma has a dual signal strength meter; one that indicates signal strength%, the other signal quality%, which is indeed more useful for OTA viewers adjusting antennas. And the RCA Ant 751 is made by Winegard and distributed by Audiovox, so it is indeed a well made compact HiVHF/UHF antenna. Used to be sold at Walmart; still sold at HHGregg, Fry's, and I believe Lowe's. Probably better price from online vendors.

It's sold at my local Meijer stores too. They however want $70 for it, & you can get it from most websites for less (even with shipping costs, the total is typically less). The OP has a much better TV Fool chart than what I have in the way of Chicago stations.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Digital Rules /forum/post/19631896


It is. I've tried both in 4 completely different locations & the 7694 was better each time.


Ah, someone with experience with 2 units I'm interested in! I'd like to hear the details...


I'm looking for a antenna that 'could" be attic mounted if needed- Hence my interest in smaller antennas- but am open to larger antennas to replace my current outdoor antenna using the existing mast.


I'd appreciate your feedback in the below thread. I'm am torn between the ANT751, the HD7694P and others on the market.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1297160

Recommendations for VHF 6 LOW @ 5miles NM 79(db),& PWR 11.7, Most UHF same distance- a couple UHF out to 40 miles
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
So I installed the antenna at my father in laws over Christmas and it was a success. Mounted it 8.5 ft above the floor of the attic with 50' rg6 quad shield. Total height was around 35 ft above street level. His TVfool is http://www.tvfool.com/modeling/tmp/d...6a1/getall.php


Our primary objective was to catch a watchable signal on WWL out of New Orleans. We did one better: 100% signal on that channel, and near 90's on almost all the other channels out of New Orleans. Our best performer was WDSU: it's nm was 7.5, and we got it at 65%. Also, we caught all the major networks out of Baton Rouge too (WVLA WBRZ WAFB WGMB). The Baton Rouge channels averaged around 65% even with the antenna pointed due east.


Overall I am very impressed with the winegard. Excellent stuff.
 

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Congrats on a successful install!

Quote:
According to page 5 (of 36) in the attachment:

http://www.nabfastroad.org/NAB-STV%2...report.doc.pdf


"Each of the CECB units has a signal indicator that is based on SNR after the equalizer..."


So for the purposes of comparing antennas I think it's valid.

Belatedly...


You might want to look at table A4-5 on page 32 of the same attachment. A CECB that reads the same value for a 45 dB range of signal power isn't going to be much use in quantifying antenna performance by itself except when compared to another box of identical performance. Additionally, the 'SNR after the equalizer' will have been affected by the amount of AGC that was applied to the RF front end adding an additional distortion to the perceived or indicated "signal level".
 
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