Advice/Help for an OTA antenna setup for Newbie

#1
Hi,

So I have finally decided to cut the cord with Directv and have been looking at a good OTA antenna setup for my home. Here is my TVFool report, antenna height set at 15 feet:

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id=51347fd950d94a

As you can see, I live a good ways from the towers I am trying to reach. My main channel needs are WJLA (7),WUSA (9),WTTG (36), WRC-DT (48). Two of those are Hi VHF and the other two are UHF. My goals for this project are to reach the stations mentioned above and be able to view channels on 3-4 Televisions in the house. Can anyone recommend a good antenna that I could use to pull in these stations. Honestly, if I could get WTTG and be able to watch football in the fall I will be extremely happy.

I would like to use the existing Directv tripod mount that is located on the roof on the backside of my house. From the ground to that point is probably around 15 feet and would probably add a 5 foot mast to gain additional height. It appears the antenna needs to be pointed at 17degrees, the mount location is on the edge of the roof and close to that direction already. From there I would run RG6 cable down the corner of the house and into the basement, total run would be under 50ft to the splitter.

Does it appear that I would be able to receive those channels? What would be a good antenna and amplifier combo to purchase? I have looked at antennas from Channel Master, Wineguard, Mohu and Clearstream. Would something like the Clearstream 4V or the EXTREMEtenna 80 work or do I need to go bigger?
 

Fringe Reception

Super Moderator, Chief Content Editor
Staff member
#2
:welcome: Twistofkane

In your difficult situation a high-gain antenna is necessary and if an amplifier proves to be required, it has to have something to amplify. The problem is the way high-gain antennas work is (by design) being very directional - but the channels to your north are spread over a 40 degree area of the compass. That limits how directional your antenna can be and thus its ability to collect weak signals, unless you are willing to add an antenna rotor. Be aware, the current location of your Dish antenna may or may not be the ideal location for an OTA antenna: it could be on the opposite side of your home.

Is it possible for you to mount your antenna higher? If so, please rerun your antenna survey at the maximum possible height above ground where you could mount an antenna and post the result here.

As of now, I am thinking about a two-antenna solution (combined on one coax) and they might need to be on separate masts.

Jim
 
#3
Hi Jim,

Thanks for the response. Here is a new survey at 25feet. I'm not sure I could get much higher than that, possibly 30ft if I mounted at the peak with a 5 foot mast.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id=51349fd3046b2a

As far as the channels being so separated, if I'm reading the survey right then the 4 channels I want are all at 17 degrees. I may be reading that wrong though. My main goal is to able to view the major network channels.

Would a site picture be of any help?

Thanks
 

Fringe Reception

Super Moderator, Chief Content Editor
Staff member
#4
Twist,

Your revised survey at ten feet higher offers more (possible) channels into their 'yellow-range' but please understand it is all theoretical, but it offers reasons to try. The easiest (possible) solution would be to try a
http://www.channelmaster.com/Digital_HDTV_Outdoor_TV_Antenna_p/cm-3020.htm

I hesitate to offer a simple solution using a single antenna but many other UHF-VHF antennas have been discontinued and are no longer available.

Jim
 
#5
Thanks Jim. That was actually one of the antennas I had looked at it before posting. I ran another TVFool report at higher heights and the signal definitely looks better. Wish I could find a way to get an antenna 40-50ft in the air.
 

jackdashack

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#6
Thanks Jim. That was actually one of the antennas I had looked at it before posting. I ran another TVFool report at higher heights and the signal definitely looks better. Wish I could find a way to get an antenna 40-50ft in the air.
How did you make out Twist~ I am relatively new to DTV and OTA. I guess about 6 months? The WUSA caught my attention. I am in that area ... somewhat. I am on the Delmarva Peninsula, about an hour East of DC. I have a one level home but can get up on a carport roof to access my end gable. I bought a EZ antennae from Denny's

http://www.dennysantennaservice.com/ez_hd_tv_Antenna.html

I guess I am about 30-35 feet above sea level. Most stations are about 50 to 55 miles away. It's a small profile but it does me pretty well getting a number of good channels. I have it on a ChannelMaster rotor. Odd thing is I can get Baltimore stations when I swing it around but as yet as not found WUSA 9. I used to watch that station when I lived on the Eastern Shore. That's the shore just across from Annapolis. This weekend brother was up from Florida, another digital TV head, and we upgraded it a bit. We replaced the old cable with quad hi-grade cable. Added large amplifier (besides the one on the antennae) in the basement and added another TV. We also grounded the antennae and mast better as static buildup is bad for reception and I hear static buildup can attract lightning. Many of these stations that are 50 miles away, if I swing the antennae right on, I can get 3 and 4 bars on the strength meter. Hope your choices are working out! jack ":-{D
 
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jackdashack

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#7
Hi,

So I have finally decided to cut the cord with Directv and have been looking at a good OTA antenna setup for my home. Here is my TVFool report, antenna height set at 15 feet:
This is a small and humble example. I realize many here have much more sophisticated setups. But I've found sometimes when new at projects the ones that answer in forums are far advanced and their suggestions can be expensive and scary. No evidence of that here, (just friendliness and experience) just a general observation of many forums, that it often scares newbs off. It has me on several different type forums. So here's a simple example of what works in many areas, very well, unless you have mountains all around. All in for about $300 max. Apologies for dark photo. It's a very dark day this Monday. Didn't take the time to lighten it up on Gimp2 or something. Cheers! ":-{D ( BTW, the J Pole is used from old Directv. Very handy! lol )

IMG_20160411_094938.jpg
 
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Fringe Reception

Super Moderator, Chief Content Editor
Staff member
#8
Jack,

A simple setup is always best. I'd tape the coax all the way down the antenna boom so it isn't free to blow around in the wind. Scotch (brand) black electrical tape works for me.

Jim
 

jackdashack

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#9
Jack,

A simple setup is always best. I'd tape the coax all the way down the antenna boom so it isn't free to blow around in the wind. Scotch (brand) black electrical tape works for me.

Jim
Hmmmm .. I just found this on the 12th. Sometimes I do not think I get the email notifications. No big! Okay, sounds good. I only hope I have enough there to pull it to the mast. I guess I could add longer eh? Thanks for the tip Jim! Cheers! Jack ":-{D
 
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