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I am using 20 yr old CM3017 25'AGL with a radio shack preamp and have lost WPIX, WWOR, WNYW, WPXN. WCBS and WNBC are poor. WABC and WNET are 90-100% good. I'd like to get all the NYC stations, we've had them for 40 years here on VHF. We also get several other off axis station, some very good and some marginal. We also get a lot of airplane traffic which will destroy the reception on the weaker stations.
Attached is my TVFool data. My thought is a HD7694p or better. Any ideas?
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You problem is pretty simple.
You now have both UHF and VHF signals and your antenna is a poor performer.
You UHF range when new was only 35 miles.
• Range Designation: Near Fringe
• UHF: 35 Miles
• VHF/FM: 50 Miles
• Length: 94 1/4"
The problem is - even with a TV fool report is that you have to take into account the area in which you live.
A general Zip Code does no good for estimates because the only thing that the TV fool report shows is the general area of the transmitter antenna and the general distance from the transmitter to your antenna.
You have to take into account if there is any trees near your antenna, if there is any buildings near you that are 4 or more stories high. If there is any hills between you and the transmitter. A lot of factors like you said including airplanes and bird migrations and swarms of bugs that can all affect your signal.
Not go get on my soap box and preach, but UHF is line of sight transmission.
If you put a UHF transmitter on a tower 1000 feet above average terrain - not above sea level.
And if you put your antenna 1000 feet above average terrain, you should get a signal.
Since you are in the fringe, you know that you are going to need a good antenna and a good location to put it in.
Basically in the past when a person did not want to do a side mount on the side of their house they traditionally put their antenna on the chimney. Chimney mounts were ok for VHF. But there are several factors that comes into play for UHF that destroys your UHF signal.
A piece of flashing 6 inches wide can block your signal, water on the roof can reflect your signal away from your antenna. Even water under your shingles and moisture in your plywood can reflect the signal away from your antenna.
Basically you are going to have to walk your antenna around the roof until you find a suitable place to put it where your reception will be best.
I am not going to attack your antenna, but what I will say will shock you.
There is always a off chance that your antenna transformer - if you are using 75 ohm cable, is bad.
In order to receive UHF signals, you are going to have to buy a good pre amplifier and a transformer that does not fall apart after a few months or even a year or two.
My advice would be for you to use a Wiengard 8200U antenna because it has the highest gain for both UHF and VHF. I would also advise that you use a Winegard AP8780 UHF VHF Pre-Amplifier ChromStar 2000 due to the fact that you don't want to over power your receiver.
That amplifier will compensate for your signal loss in your wire and splitters between the antenna and the television.
I would also advise that you use Quad Shield cable due to it's lower loss at X frequency and it's better shielding than regular RG 6 wire.
That set up should get you a 50 mile range.
A Winegard AP 8275 would probably boost it up to about 70 miles UHF.
The question is how much do you want to spend and how much do you want to receive?
Thanks for the suggestions KNP 2516. I'll add them to my to do list. The TVFool data I listed was for my antenna's actual Google Earth coordinates and should be pretty good for guesstimating an antenna. I'm not sure why you suggest a huge old style all channel VHF/UHF antenna when all I need is 7-13 VHF and 14-51 UHF. I also don't want 14' long antenna on my roof. It's also funny how my old underpowered antenna picks up Philly stations 53 miles away that are 140' off axis to it.and over the hill. Also today, some how WNYW 5.1 and 5.2 (WWOR) came in. My last re-scan picked up 32 channels, including 9 from Philly.
Anybody else have any ideas?
A TV fool report does not tell us if there is a building 4 or more stories high between you and the transmitter or what other obstacles are out in your yard. That was my point.
Last edited by KNP 2516 on Sat Jun 27, 2009 8:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
Good morning Jersey Devil -
What KNP 2516 states is in general correct, but it may also be possible for you to receive the channels you wish to receive with a slightly smaller antenna. Because all we have to go by is that TV Fool report I can only make suggestions off of the listed signal power on TV Fool. The FCC provides us with updated data on a regular basis and I am not aware if they are up to date or not. If you would like to private message me your full address we can look into this a little better.
The HD7694P, depending on how high you mount the antenna and what other obstructions are between you and the tower, has an excellent chance of pulling in all the channels you desire. The channels you stated are all under 40 miles and that antenna is rated for up to 50 miles. It will not of course pick up WKOB-LP and any other channels you desire under channel 7.
Combative? Sorry no, but I am trying to find a solution and I'm sure your suggestion is not the only possible one. BTW the Winegard antenna selector recommends the HD7697p, which may be what I go with, though the HD7696p might do the trick as well. Maybe I should have posted this over on the Tech forum?
Thanks again for your input.
Here's a little update.
I connected a Dish DTVPal Plus to my VCR with a 2 way splitter, one lead going to the TV the other the DTVPal. When I scanned the DTVPal I got all the channels my Samsung LN26A450C1D tuner gets. What is curious is WPIX 11-1 locks in with a 78% on the DTVPal and has a good picture but won't lock in at all on the Samsung. The Samsung signal jumps all over from 80% to zero. I've rescanned the Samsung, even using the double scan technique, and it still won't lock on WPIX. What's going on?
The DTV Pal Plus might have a better tuner than does your Samsung tv.
Unfortunately, television manufacturers do not publish how much sensitivity their tuners has.
One other thing to look at is that your splitter is probably at fault.
A 2 way splitter, in line with other two ways splitters each has a loss of about 3.7 db.
If somewhere in the line, you have more than a 2 way splitter, the loss rate goes up proportionally.
What happens is that not all the ports on a splitter has the same amount of loss and you end up with one or more ports that has as much as twice as much loss as the other ports and so the port with the most amount of signal is going to have the best reception.
3 db of loss is equal to a loss of 1/2 of the signal.
When you have a television system, the most amount of reception you can have is what ever is at the antenna. The amplifiers only job is to compensate for the loss in the wire, splitters etc. It cannot physically manufacture a signal when there is no signal present. That is the reason for a pre amplifier - to amplify the signal as close to the antenna as possible.
Here's more about WPIX. This morning the Samsung had perfect reception with 80% signal strength for about 1 hour. Then it reverted back to being unstable to non-existent. The DVTPal still gets it fine. I don't think it is the splitter as WPIX wasn't coming in before I hooked up the splitter to the DVTpal and the TV. I also tried switching outputs from the splitter and it made no difference. Maybe the Samsung is actually more sensitive than the DTVPAL and is picking up some garbage data (possibly cross channel interference?) that is making a lock impossible. I'll contact Samsung and see if it may be a defective tuner.
Thanks for the advice,
Heres an update on the WPIX story:
Since it finally stopped raining I finally did what a WCBS tech suggested: disconnected the pre-amp.
After getting back on the roof and doing that, the Samsung picked up WPIX fine, but I lost most of my UHF channels. So it looks like the Samsung tuner is more sensitive than the DTVPal and was getting over powered with the pre-amp, even if I used the pre-amp's attenuator to cut back the signal
Here the results based on using the DTVPal's signal meter:
NYC Amp No Amp
------------- ----- ---------
CBS 2 61% 0%
NBC 4 61% 0%
Fox 5 0% 0%
ABC 7 85% 64%
MYN 9 0% 0%
WPIX 11 74% 64% Note: With no amp, good reception on TV.
No reception with amp.
WNET 13 74% 64%
Off axis NJ PBS
WNJN 50 73% 53%
WNJB 58 85% 69%
So it looks like all I need is the right antenna and pre-amp. But unless I get a 90% or better signal, the airplanes will probably still cause problems.
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