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Signal boosters & Amplifiers?! do they actually work?!

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Old 02-07-2006, 09:53 AM   #1
Will get a 3DTV in 2011
 
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Default Signal boosters & Amplifiers?! do they actually work?!

Ok i just need a quick understand about these two:

SIGNAL BOOSTERS

and

AMPLIFIERS

what are they used for? do they actually work or is this all BullS#*&? whats the difference between the two? and finally should i consider one of these when i get my HDTV?!

Thank you
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Old 02-07-2006, 10:56 AM   #2
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The true advantage of amplification (or boosting) for those signals is if you have long runs of cable. Or distributing to multiple locations.

A good clean signal needs no amplification. And often it can even degrade it.

An amplifier can not compensate for a bad signal to start with, or bad connections, etc. And can amplify noise right along with any signal content.

Use only if needed, and use sparingly. It's not a magic process that will make a normal signal look any better.
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Last edited by daleb; 02-07-2006 at 10:58 AM.
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Old 02-07-2006, 09:33 PM   #3
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so whats the dif between an amp and signal booster?...i have the main cable line running into the apartment from outside..that same line is split, one into the TV and one into another splitter, then from there its one into my cable modem and the other to yet ANOTHER splitter which one runs into one bedroom and the other into the other bedroom...(thats ALOT of splitting right) also the lines are very very long..(20ft or more)..i got one thats 50ft LOL...i dont think this setup will be staying like this for long though..

are there any other known ways of boosting a signal to get better picture? i just switch my connection from my digital cable terminal to TV from that standard cable(coaxial i think its called) to the composite cables.... small difference in picture but it was noticeable.. the noise and artifacts are still present but the picture brightness increase and the color's changed overall. i think if i go from composite to S-video there might be an even better increase yay?...
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Old 02-08-2006, 07:33 AM   #4
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Now I have clearer understanding of what you are trying to achieve.

For that many connections it would be best to have them fed from one point. Let's say you have a distribution amp, (2nd link you posted) connected. All the necessary hookups would octopus out from the distribution amp, instead of being daisy-chained along one cable, That would be preferable.
That would be an advantage because each connection represents some degree of loss. More loss than the 50' of cable.

As far as viewing, HD requires components cables, or HDMI (or DVI) cables to your display, no other kind will work for you.

Non HD can also use S-Video or composite. You can trial and error different ones for the best picture.

Yes, you can get an inline amplifier or booster (just different terminology) for cable lines. The inline amps are generally better than the small silver box amps. But no comparison to a good cable configuration with a distribution amp. If you use a inline amp, have the amp located before your greatest number of connections, and the power module (which puts DC at the center conductor of the cables to power the amp) would be located near your setup.
Again, your biggest loss here is splitting off the signal numerous times.
Centrally locating and feeding out to the locations, as I mentioned, would be preferable.
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Last edited by daleb; 02-08-2006 at 07:37 AM.
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Old 02-08-2006, 09:56 PM   #5
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i was just over at The Source(by circuit city) and found a 4-way 2ghz Amplifier...it was for $29.99 i believe by Nexxtek...i think im going to pick it up...since i need 4 cable lines (living room, bedroom, other bedroom and cablemodem)...i think i also saw a Monster version of it..but it was like twice as much and it was only a 3-way Amp splitter....i think this is essential because of all the splits i have in my apartment...I dont have a HDTV(yet) but when i get one im worried about the cablemodem, since that one line coming into the apartment will feed both the HD/SD signals AND broadband internet... thats ALOT of data running through just one COAX line...would it be wize to get the cable company to insert a additional cable line into the apartment for the HD, i wouldnt care if it cost alittle extra for the service but im assuming its worth it, having that one single line for the HD data to flow through etc..etc..
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Old 02-08-2006, 10:50 PM   #6
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Distribution amps must not only be rated to pass at least 1 GHz, but also must be bi-directional so interactive STBs and cablemodems can talk back to the headend.
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Old 02-09-2006, 06:51 AM   #7
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Following Sawdey's advice, you would want something like this:

http://www.smarthome.com/7750-8.html

I would think a good one will run you closer to a $75-100, say for a 4 way.
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Last edited by daleb; 02-09-2006 at 06:54 AM.
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Old 02-09-2006, 05:21 PM   #8
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wow.. so im like totally screwed currently!?! .. i have all these 2-way splitters and only one of them says bi-directional on it..(i just looked at them) and there only 1Ghz......ok thats the next thing i have to get, is an amp big time..the ones i saw where like 2400MHZ(2.4Ghz), its pretty sad that one of the splitters is from the Dollarstore also LOL!!...
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Old 03-23-2006, 07:01 PM   #9
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I Just got the Motorola booster484095-001-00 at Circuit City and it works great after some small problems.. I only have one HDTV and have no need for a splitter. The connector on the ant it seems to be spring loaded. As I push the coax cable on it, it pushed the crappy cable out and didn't make a strong connection. Every time I plugged the cable in I lost all reception. To make a long story shot it was my very poor cable that caused all the problems from my ant. The only way I could fix the problem was to use a Monster 2gig splitter before the booster and plug the ant cable in there and then run a coax monster cable to the booster. Now it works Great!!!

All TV stations are HD all numbers are rated at 100% for best pic

Without booster--------------with booster

11.1 ----66----------------------- 96
9.2 ----85 -----------------------95
9.1 ----86----------------------- 95
4.1------70-----------------------78
2.1 ------0------------------------88
45.1-----67-----------------------82
29.1-----91-----------------------96
29.2-----90 -----------------------94

Also received four new channels that it never saw before

Last edited by pioneer863; 03-23-2006 at 07:04 PM.
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Old 03-24-2006, 07:41 AM   #10
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Glad you got your problem solved. Bad cables can be notorious for creating hard to find problems.

Looks like a good amp:

http://www.epinions.com/Motorola_Sig...splay_~reviews
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