Cutting the cord


Testing the signal of an antenna in today's world is different than it was 50 years ago, when we would turn and hold the antenna at different angles until, "wait for it" Wow-la, picture and sound came on as we stood on one foot with the antenna over our head.

Non, no, no, no -- that's at any one particular moment. You don't get haze or "ghosting" with digital, like people used to get with analog. At any one instant in time, you either get a picture or you don't. But if the signal fades in and out in the fourth dimension of time (e.g. "pixelation" or audio chopping in and out), that's a normal sign of unacceptable weak reception.Rick

That's exactly my point, as I tested my antenna connection, the station came in when the tuner was getting enough signal "at that moment in time". I was using my TV's Auto-scan function to test different variables. As Rick points out, that's a bad idea!

No, no, no ... no way to run a railroad. I get about 20 reliable stations on a scan -- plus at least 4 or 5 that will never come in. Each scan is largely the luck of the draw. Rick
Exactly Rick, that's why I said it gave me invalid feedback. But what's your solution to this?

Maybe your TV is an exception, but we've found TV meters to be very unreliable. There's no accepted standard for what they're actually measuring. I think you said your TV has two different meters, which might be nice, but you really don't know a heckova lot til you sit down and watch each channels for a couple minutes at various times of the day (middle of night and middle of day, maybe). Spend more time watching and less time posting. :popcorn:
Yes, the TV I'm using has several factors it displays to measure signal reception. One is SNR (db) and the other is a percentage of signal strength. These are details that were very helpful, since standing in front of the TV for each channel to see how well it's coming in is not practical; how long is long enough? First testing one TV with one connection type, then different antennas, then splitting to the house. I have pages of documented results that I could have never analyzed had I just watched the TV over time.

For the most part I've found the signal meters on TVs and converter boxes to be quite useful
Thank You Steve!

My signal for low VHF has an SNR of 31 db and MAX 100% signal strength. My UHF signal is coming in between 19-21 db with about 50% strength on most channels, as low as 30% on the fringe reception. These measurements are with a short leed direct to one TV. So, I believe there is no doubt I need a UHF antenna combined with the Amphenol VHF.

Better to add a pre-amplifier before the split. A plain old 15 dB amplifier multiplies the signal 32 times -- it's more powerful than 32 Amphenols perfectly ganged and pointed. Now, a pre-amp adds its own noise to the system, but so does each Amphenol antenna, which is what I've been trying to tell you. A pre-amp is made for the job of splitting up signals.Rick
I agree that before I split this signal 5-8 times, it makes sense to amplify--no doubt about it!

You deserve credit for cutting the cord, and saving some hard earned moolah, but the one doesn't imply the other. I managed to cut the cord, but DIY stuff is strictly against my religion. I punt all that stuff over to Steve. :becky:

Well, in a way I am punting it over to Steve and anyone else that can help, that's why I'm on this forum. As a DIY'r, I'm doing this not because I have the time or the knowledge (that's obvious). I would gladly pay to have this done by a professional if I had the money, but that's not the case. So, if someone wants to travel here on their dime, I'll light up the grill.

In the meantime, I'll fix my connection one more time and ordering the parts needed today. Happy Father's Day everyone!
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