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Old 03-02-2011, 01:21 PM   #1
gaantenna
 

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Default antenna pblm and ota reception

I have a radio shack antenna that now has two broken plastic clips where the arms are pointed down because of wind. I am using an amp that was suggested in tigerbangs listing. Is there anyway to fix this? If not, what antenna would be good in the 30577 area? I can pick up Greenville & Spartanburg, SC, some Atlanta, GA, GPTV, and Asheville, NC. I do have reception problems at times due to trees and weather. I would love to get better reception. How high should I go to improve reception?
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Old 03-02-2011, 05:51 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gaantenna View Post
I have a radio shack antenna that now has two broken plastic clips where the arms are pointed down because of wind. I am using an amp that was suggested in tigerbangs listing. Is there anyway to fix this? If not, what antenna would be good in the 30577 area? I can pick up Greenville & Spartanburg, SC, some Atlanta, GA, GPTV, and Asheville, NC. I do have reception problems at times due to trees and weather. I would love to get better reception. How high should I go to improve reception?
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To start out gaabtenna , you give this forum little to go on with a talc standard zip code based TVFool report. What this forum really needs to answer your questions is an exact address TVFool report you can post with another two posts.

Meanwhile, back in my ranch in the middle of a corn field in Indiana, I can state even a 30577 talc standard TVfool report contains a gold mine of information. And what I did is requested two TVFool reports based on only your zip code and antenna heights of 20 and 60 feet. In general going over 60 feet starts to cost big bucks.

But I post only your TVfool generic report based on 60 feet.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...c77a503eb60da3

And the things I note are as follows. An extra 40 feet seems to gain you some 13 Db's. And since you have gettable TV signals at just about every direction around you, to take advantage of your OTA potential, will involve the need for an antenna rotor. In addition, its quite clear you live in a terrain challenged region, on one hand your talc standard TVFool report implies you can get LOS at long distances to certain directions to the North East, but at other directions, especially to the South, you are two edge and weaker at much shorter distances.

Just my initial take, let us see what others say. But what this forum really needs is your exact address TVfool report. Meanwhile the fact is and remains, TVfool exists to be lied to, you can tell TVFool report that you have any antennae height you can imagine, and see how it compares to some other lesser predicted signal strength.

Meanwhile back in my Indiana ranch, I have done my homework, and concluded extra antenna height will do little for me, but in your case, I have to be bullish on extra antenna height as a benefit to you.
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:05 PM   #3
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I went to tvfools. I did have the link, but it gave me the 5 posts or more restriction from this forum. Please read below to see if my description helps.

This is the data. I apologize for not providing enough pertinent information. I have a rotor, Radio Shack VU-190X antenna 25 feet in the air, Channel Master Titan 7777 preamp, and good shielded coax into the house. We only have problems with certain distant stations in Atlanta, GA, Greenville, SC, and Asheville during bad weather, but sometimes a few stations go in and out. The thing that I do not like is how the Radio Shack antenna had cheap plastic holders for the masts. I find that the amplification holds most channels during bad or adverse weather conditions. Recently, one of the best channels, WYFF 4-1 has been choppy. If I move the antenna higher, I would have to use supporting wires, and I am dubious whether this would improve my signal. I do need a sturdier antenna to withstand the wind from our neighbor cutting trees along the northern perimeter. The cutting did not help where I receive signals. On a good day, I receive 2-WSB, 4-WYFF, 13-WLOS, 16-WGGS, 20-GPTV, 21-FOX21, 29-SCETV, 32-WNEG, 33-UNCTV, 34-WUVG, & 62-WASV. Except for 32, the other listings have two to three channels on each. I would appreciate any help if there is any.
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:43 PM   #4
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gaantenna, you now have five posts. Please go to tvfool.com and provide the link to your actual address tvfool report. It will be much clearer to us when we can see the report and read your comments. Also, just for clarity, can you tell us where Atlanta, Greenville and Asheville are relative to your location? I've been in your part of the woods before but lack familiarity with orientation between cities. Thanks.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:46 PM   #5
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To Gaantenna,

Your post five fills in important information gaps, as for the IDRick post, it contains very sound reasoning.

But bottom line, you have most of the pieces already in place to take best advantage of your individual location, location , and location.

And you have basically two remaining variables to play with. (1) Your rat shack antenna. (2) Your antenna height.

So let me take them one at a time in terms of generic advice.

Aside from the fact the your rat shack antenna may be damaged and not in good shape, rat shack antennas tend to be more wide angle performers than narrow angle telescopes. Without an antenna rotor, many people get more stations with a wide angle antenna, but with a
antenna rotor, its always better to have a narrow beam antenna with a far better on exact aim antenna gain. Someone like tigerbangs
tends to advocate a two antenna system, one antenna for VHF Like and another UHF only antenna. While others may advocate only a single combo VHF/UHF combo antenna like a far better built winegard 7698P. In general the tigerbangs dual antenna method may deliver a few silly Db's more gain than a single combo antenna, but either way, either will likely deliver 4 to 6 db's more exact aim antenna gain than your rat shack.

In terms of more antenna height, the benefits of that may be best explored on TVFool only after you get your exact address report. Like I mentioned, it costs nothing for you to tell TVFool your antenna height is 40 or 60 feet rather than 25. But it costs you a certain amount of money to turn that into reality. Only you can decide if its a worthwhile investment for you. But its my experience after playing with many different TVFool reports, in some cases just a few extra feet of antenna height can deliver big benefits and in other cases very large and very expensive large increases in antenna height deliver very little benefit. And because your exact address TVFool report protects your exact location, only you can lie to TVFool.
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Old 03-03-2011, 07:46 AM   #6
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I am 54 miles from Greenville, 72 miles from Atlanta, 81 miles from Spartanburg, 82 miles from Asheville.
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...c77abf939ca980

Google Maps locator is neat to find out the information of actual distance "as the crow flies." I am on a hill which helps reception, but there are trees from the NE to NW. If you need more information, please ask.
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Old 03-03-2011, 08:38 AM   #7
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I didn't have the time to read everything this morning, but from what I read you are asking if there is anything that you can do to improve your reception.

The VU 190 antenna is a good performer for the VHF side but a poor performer for the UHF side of your reception situation.
The blue plastic clips are known for breaking and the elements will fold back during high winds. If you only have one or two high band VHF stations - half the elements can be removed - a portion of the boom can be hack sawed off with no loss of performance, since the last two rows are for reception of the channel 2-4 bands.

I would say that if someone refuses to post a street level address, they really don't want my help.

Based on a glance at your report - I would say that the Winegard 7698p antenna would do a good job at your location - as long as you used a good antenna rotor to turn it towards the signals you desire to receive.
The CM 7777 pre amp would also be the most logical solution if you have long runs of wire or multiple splits.
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Old 03-03-2011, 09:32 AM   #8
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Thanks for posting your exact address tvfool report! It is a very helpful tool for evaluating your reception challenges and opportunities. A couple more questions for you. How many tv's are connected to this antenna? How many splitters do you have your distribution system? What is the maximum cable run from the antenna to your most distant tv? Are you currently using a rotor? If so, which rotor and what is it's relative age? Which stations are "gotta haves" and which are "nice to haves" in both the Atlanta and Spartanburg markets? Knowing your preferences will be helpful for selecting a new antenna. IMO, it is wiser to replace the Rat Shack versus repairing it.

To assist you, I have run a rabbitears.info report for your zip code. Go to the link and click on each call sign. It will tell you the network affiliation for the main channel plus tell you what's on the sub channels. See: http://www.rabbitears.info/search.ph...pe=dBm&height= Please note you may not be able to receive all the channels in the rabbitears.info list.

HTH,

Rick
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Old 03-03-2011, 10:00 AM   #9
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I don't have a problem posting my address, but I have an old one that I discovered was accurrate with Google last night, and the new one does not show up because we have gone to E-911 which does not come up on most mapping sites. In the past, the old address would show up around a mile away. My old address that shows up on the Google map system is 5019 Brookhaven Cir, Toccoa, GA 30577. I have been able to see my house clearly from satellite pictures on Google or MSN. Here is the link with satellite picture from a native Pennsylvanian.

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&sour...11319&t=h&z=17

My house is to the right of the red pushpin. My amplifier outside comes on at least 75 ft cable into the inside amp connector, connects to the first tv, and then two 25 ft cables through a Phillips 5 -1000 mhz splitter to the other two tv's. My antenna, rotor, and preamp are around 3 years old. We like 4, 13, 16, 20-listed as channel 8 on report ,21, 29, 33-UNCTV, & 62. The Atlanta stations are nice to have, but they tend to go in and out because it is SW of here. We are closer to SC and NC.
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Old 03-03-2011, 10:41 AM   #10
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There'll be varying suggestions for your location. IMO, I would suggest two antennas. For VHF, I would use either a Winegard 1713 or Antenna Craft y10-7-13 (needed due to many nearby trees). I would use a fixed mount for this antenna and aim it at approximately 68 degrees (compass reading). I would then suggest installing the rotor above the VHF antenna and mount a good long range UHF antenna (Antenna Direct xg91) to the mast. Provide 3 to 4 feet of separation between antennas. Join the antennas together at the inputs of a preamp. I suggest a Winegard 2870 pre-amp. You have a very strong nearby channel which could give you some grief if you chose to use a Channel Master 7777 pre amp.

Benefits of this approach, you will have a few stations that are available at all times to all tvs (real vhf channels 7, 8, 9, 13 and possibly 11), regardless of rotor position. Rotating the UHF antenna gives you added flexibility to search the distant markets or set it for the local towers as needs/interest demand. There will also be less strain on the rotor to move the smaller XG91 antenna than a larger combo.

Good luck!

Last edited by IDRick; 03-03-2011 at 12:45 PM.
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Old 03-03-2011, 12:03 PM   #11
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The IDRick two antenna outline seems to be a very viable solution, the only minor quibble I might have is in replacing your existing 7777 preamp first.

While you have two close stations at 5.6 miles and at a heading of 306 degrees that would normally overwhelm your television tuner if over amped by a too strong 7777 amp, but if you can avoid pointing your antenna closer than 30 degrees away from a heading of 306, you may not have to change amps. When over 30 degrees off main antenna aim, the stations will come in weaker. But its also possible that IDRick may be right, and you will need a weaker pre-amp, but maybe the time to make that decision is after you try the stay away from 306 main aim idea first.

As it is, with many of your distant channels, you are going to have some co channel problems. But even at 25 feet, you have more LOS stations, than the generic 60 ft. report I posted earlier. In short you have a very good location for potential OTA reception. Living at the top of a hill is the same as having a very tall antenna mast for a valley
location.
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Old 03-03-2011, 12:44 PM   #12
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Ooops, my error. I missed that gaantenna is currently using a CM7777. If overload was an issue, they would likely have commented.... Upon further review, no need to change out pre-amp. Thanks for catching my error NonMcTubber!

BTW, gaantenna, are you receiving CBS on WSPA (ch 7) or some other channel with CBS?

Last edited by IDRick; 03-03-2011 at 01:04 PM. Reason: Added question
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:09 PM   #13
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IDRick, We receive WASV 62 which is owned by WSPA7, but since their tower fell and was replaced Channel 7-1 and 7-2 do not come in but every once in a while.
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Old 04-30-2011, 09:10 AM   #14
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Default replaced with antennacraft hd1850

I replaced my radio shack with hd1850. There are a few extra variables. My antenna is on a telescopic pole cemented in the ground. It is leaning on the bracket attached to my house, and it moves because of the wind and no guy wires. I checked all of my connections, but I have been having channels cut in and out. The antenna is 30 feet in the air with a 50 ft cable that comes into the house where it goes to a three way splitter. From there one cable goes 25 feet to one tv, the next goes to a splitter 25 feet way into a tv and dvd recorder, the third goes into a splitter where the main cable come in to a tv and dvd recorder. As you have seen from all of my information in this post, I have an CM7777 amp with rotor. I did try connecting directly into the third television with my amp, but I am still having reception problems with channels that I used to get like 16-1, 62-1, 13-1, 33-1. You can look at the satellite link in the post above to get an idea of what I am dealing with. Even with the broken mast on the old antenna, it would only lose a couple channels in bad weather or interference. I do have a wireless router in my house for internet. Last night, 33-1 was coming in fine, and then it started getting choppy and dropped out. I would appreciate any suggestions that can settle this irritation.
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Old 04-30-2011, 10:32 AM   #15
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I doubt much can be done with the current antenna/preamp you are using. Both are wrong for your situation IMO.

The least expensive first possible fix would be to replace the pre-amp with a Channel Master 3414 distribution amp. Mount as close as possible to the antenna & use an HLSJ to filter out all the FM from the signal before amplifying. An HDP-269 pre amp may work, but I have had better luck with distribution amps when more than 2 splits are needed with a strong station or 2 in the mix. This system will also be better than the 7777 if the antenna will be swapped out.

If the above doesn't provide satisfactory results, the antenna will need to be swapped out. Tigerbangs deep fringe system (YA-1713 / 91-XG) would be my choice here. You will end up with much better UHF performance & a lighter/lower wind load set up.
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