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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just looked on antennaweb.org and it appears that most of the stations I want (I live in Marietta, Georgia and the stations are in Atlanta) are 158-160 degrees. Does that mean a boom antenna focused on that compass from Magnetic north would be best? I have restrictions in my covenants and might be able to get away with a small antenna on my roof - so I have decided to go with a larger antenna in my attic - no taller structures around. Here are my qan questions:


- would a boom work best?

- should I use an amplified antenna for better results in an attic?

- the antennaweb recommended to get all, red is best - yellow would get me some, but not all - how do I know that any particular antenna is "red" distance rated?

- is there a particular top list (3 or 4) best "red" antennas that would fit in an attic (I have at least 15' x 15' in my attic, or more) and my circumstances? Are there companies that offer installation?


Thanks!
 

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Just 2 notes,

1. The Association really can't stop you from putting up an antenna outside... http://www.fcc.gov/mb/facts/otard.html ..even if it's against and CCR&R's etc...


2. The main issue with attic installs is the many homes use wire mesh before stucco etc...depending on your home this can be an issue.


That said, I use a Radio Shack 15-1171 Preamp, and it works great . The Antenna will have the color code chart on the box to help you decide the type of antenna you need. I use Channel Master (4228) http://www.channelmaster.com/pages/u1.htm , but Radio Shack also have great antenna's i.e. 15-2160, good unit, http://www.radioshack.com/category.a...%5F000&Page=1.


As for pointing the antenna, you got it right!


I will tell you that picture quality reception Over-The-Air (OTA) blows away Cable Pictures, and beats Satellite reception also, the clarity is amazing!


Hope this give you a bit of helpful information.


Good Luck!

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for your help! I hope you're willing to answer a few more questions. First, is there a consensus that those 2 antennas you mentioned are the best for long distances (I am only about 25 miles from the source, but thought perhaps the longer distance capability also meant greater power in receiving). Second, can either or both of those be placed in an attic? I need to determine if have any construction issues - I have a brick and stucco house and don't know if the attic wall has stucco/mesh issues. Third, can I use an amplifier with any antenna - and specifically with those? Would that help me pull in a signal better? Is there any reason everyone wouldn't use an antenna? How much does a decent amplifier cost? Other than Radio Shack, what stores carry antennas and amplifiers? Thanks! I'm hoping to go somewhere locally (north west Atlanta) to a store where someone knows what to sell me and maybe even has an installation service b/c I'm such a newbie. I've decided to go with a Panasonic L300u projector and a HCCV Da-Lite 92" diagonal screen, all of which I'm brand new to - so I'm feeling overwhelmed with it all. Thanks for your help!
 

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At 25miles there is no reason to spend any more money than the Channel Master model 4221 its about $25. Also add a mast (5foot or 10foot) and mounting hardware plus RG6 coaxial cable. The 4221 pulls in signals without an amplifier out to about 40miles. You don't need more gain at 25miles, it would be wasted and just cost more and might even cause other problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
People seem to be talking about ghosting and dropping signals due to interference, so I thought a stonger antenna would insure less problems. Is that wrong? Where does the pre-amp get added, and would it be easy to just add one later? Does it go in between the HD decoder and antenna? Also, I plan on putting in my attic which I know is not ideal, but it meets the wife approval factor - so I figured the larger than I need antenna or pre-amp would help overcome the problems of being in the attic. Is that true or would the antenna you mentioned be fine for my application? I'm afraid to invest money for OTA HD only to have to give in to either Dish HD (I have Dish now) or back to cable for HD. Thanks!
 

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Ghosting is an analog TV issue, not digital TV. With digital TV once you are above the reciever's input signal threshold a larger signal doesn't produce a better picture. For long distances, beyond 40miles, fading can be an issue and then a higher gain antenna plus preamp can help. But for your 25mile or less distance, too much gain can cause problems because a strong signal can overload the preamp. Also reflections from strong signals will be stronger and bounce off nearby objects and cause dropouts at the receiver due to it receiving two signals out of phase. A good directional antenna will reduce the reflected signals coming from other directions. So in general, start with a good antenna first. If you need a little more gain go with a higher gain antenna and raise it higher- and then onlyf if that isn't enough should a preamp be considered. It will also keep the money outlay much lower since a preamp costs more than a good antenna by itself! The preamp mounts on the antenna mast as close as possible to the antenna output and it gets power over the coax cable from a power supply located indoors near the STB - it includes an injector adaptor to combine the DC power with the RF signal. You really need to put the antenna outdoors because in an attic or indoors you may get reflections and reduced signal levels that a bigger antenna or preamp can't help. Using it outdoors you can use a smaller less obtrusive antenna and avoid reflections.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Got it! Thanks. Is there a particular kind of directional antenna that can fit on a Dish that is both in the "red" zone, which antennaweb.org recommends and that is fairly unobtrusive? I understand that despite subdivision covenants, FCC regs say, in short, that my subdivision government can influence where I put it, but cannot prevent it. However, I don't know if there is a size restriction. I live in a subdivision of about 425 houses and I would be the first that I know of with a roof antenna. So as you can imagine, even if I can legally do it, I am hesitant. I might consider a very small roof antenna if I can hide it by the dish. Any thoughts? If there is no ver small but powerful antenna for the roof/dish mountable, is there a "best" antenna for an attic? Thanks!
 

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As always, take Antenna Web's suggestions with a grain of salt, it's a good place to start but often inaccurate. But given that your'e only 25 miles out you should be able to get by with just about any antenna.


If you have a dish and want something to use with that how about one of the stealth antennas? These are small "wing" shaped antennas 36" to 40" wide. They are more or less bi-directional, but would work fine for you. These can be mounted above the dish, there are specific masts made for this. Winegard makes a nice amplified unit and I believe Channel Master makes one too. The Winegard I have is the same color as my dish and not much bigger. I'm using it for an FM antenna, but I have tried it on my TV and I can pick up stations 50 miles away (analog, with a little snow).


This might be an option for you.
 
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