Need antenna recommendation, please. My brain is spinning!

checkerkitty

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#1
We would like to ditch our cable service, ASAP. Here is our info from TV Fool:

TV Fool

A roof or attic mount would be fine. There are just so many options and I don't know which is best for our needs. We will be running the signal through the existing coaxial cable to one TV, only. I've looked on Amazon and seen several different antennas: Terk HDTVa, several Clearstreams and one on the net called an EZ-HD.
We would like to get as many channels as possible. Any help is greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Christy
 

Fringe Reception

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

Attic antennas can work well, however, if you have foil-backed insulation, steel chimney pipes, HVAC ducting or other metallic surfaces nearby, it may be a no-go. If you have a metal roof all bets are off and you will have to use an outdoor antenna.

Unlike many other people, you have a plethora of potential channels potentially available to you, but they are located all around the compass. You also have a few high-band VHF channels: to receive both VHF and UHF bands may require using two antennas such as this installation I made last year for a customer:



On the other hand, there are some UHF antennas that do a fairly good job with VHF signals including the Channel Master 4228HD and the Kosmic SuperQuad that is available here from Forum Member 'Escape Velocity'. The top antenna pictured above is an 'old-style' Channel Master 4221, similar to the Kosmic SuperQuad: the lower antenna is a high-band VHF Yagi that I had to add to this setup to receive channels below 14 ... in this particular situation.

So, to start I'd try a screen-type antenna mounted either inside your attic or outside, but it will require an antenna rotator to point it at the various antenna 'farms'.

Regarding using your existing cable system in your home, this may or may not be a good idea. You wrote you want to have OTA reception to only one TV. However, if your existing coaxial cable system has additional outlets, the signal will be split or divided between all the 'outlets'. Something like a garden soaker hose compared to a nozzle: the signal needed by the one TV may be too weak because your existing system distributes it around your home. An amplifier may be required. Perhaps better yet, a new single RG-6 coaxial cable run from the antenna directly to the tv set may be best. I hope this helps and keep us posted.

Jim
 
Last edited:

MrPogi

Moderator, , Webmaster of Cache Free TV
Staff member
#3
Re: CheckerKitty: Need antenna recommendation, please. My brain is spinning!

Since the threads you posted to are closed, I'll start a new one:

First, what Jim said! And thank you for posting your TVfool - without us having to ask.

Second, I think you could ignore anything on your TVfool below KMXU-LP as either too weak and/or duplicate programming. I noticed you put your antenna height at 18 feet, can you redo your TVfool at about 30 ft and see if we can clear up those 1-edge signals? I did notice a lot of analog stations in your area, but you can probably ignore them, they most likely are'nt broadcasting unless they're low power ("-LP") stations.

But, I would like to know, what stations are important to you? Do you have children (One of ION tv's subchannels is QUBO, for kids) Are Spanish language stations important to you? How about the CW network?

You can get easily get Fox, NBC, CBS, Telemundo, Uni, ABC, and KHCE 16(IND) by pointing any decent UHF antenna to about 156 degrees on your compass, even from your attic IF there is no foil or metal blocking the way. PBS is channel 9 vhf, and a few degrees south of the others. It should present no major problem, its a strong, High VHF channel. If you want ION 26 or CW 5, you will need to add another antenna or a rotor.

Here's probably the cheapest and easiest solution for you:

Go to Radio Shack and pick up a u75-r antenna:


I suggest this because you can return it if it doesn't work, its cheap and local. (And I have one in my attic)

Put it in your attic or roof and aim it to about 170 degrees on your compass.
you should get 29, 4, 5, 60, 41, 12, and 23 virtual at a minimum. You should also get 17 off the back of the antenna, as well as 9 PBS (I get channel 8 VHF at 90 degrees off the side of this antenna). Channel 35 may come in even at about 50 degrees from where you're pointing because its pretty strong, and you may also get 10 (IND) if the beam on the U-75 is wide enough- and I believe it may be, or you may have to aim a bit further south to "split the difference" between 159 and 210 degrees. If 10 is not important to you then don't worry about it.

If you want channel 26 (ION, QUBO, and IONlife) you will need to add a second antenna pointing to 268 degrees. This will also make 32 a sure thing. If you really want CW, it can be had but since its VHF-lo, it means another antenna most likely, a vhf uhf combo on a rotor for 5VHF and 26 / 32 UHF. Do you really need CW 5 that bad?

Even if you had to buy 2 antennas, and a mast for roof mounting, it should come to around a hundred bucks (The R/S U75 is $35 each) and if you are doing more than 2 TVs you may need an amplifier. That will get you all your major networks except CW, with no rotor to worry about. But try the single antenna first and see what you get.
 
Last edited:

dave73

DTVUSA Member
#4
To Jim In Seattle: I looked at the TV Fool chart, and checkerkitty will need an antenna with Lo-VHF if KCWX is important, since they're on RF 5. If KCWX isn't important, then a Hi-VHF will be needed for KLRN RF 9, KBNB-LP 10, & KSAT-TV RF 12, & UHF for everything else. You mention that checkerkitty may need an amplifier. I say checkerkitty will need a pre-amplifier will likely be needed (especially if checkerkitty wants to pickup KCWX). I will be looking at a pre-amplifier for my next antenna setup. Luckily I won't need an extravegant antenna setup, like checkerkitty will, but mine will be equally a problem.
 

checkerkitty

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#5
Since the threads you posted to are closed, I'll start a new one:

First, what Jim said! And thank you for posting your TVfool - without us having to ask.

Second, I think you could ignore anything on your TVfool below KMXU-LP as either too weak and/or duplicate programming. I noticed you put your antenna height at 18 feet, can you redo your TVfool at about 30 ft and see if we can clear up those 1-edge signals? I did notice a lot of analog stations in your area, but you can probably ignore them, they most likely are'nt broadcasting unless they're low power ("-LP") stations.

But, I would like to know, what stations are important to you? Do you have children (One of ION tv's subchannels is QUBO, for kids) Are Spanish language stations important to you? How about the CW network?

You can get easily get Fox, NBC, CBS, Telemundo, Uni, ABC, and KHCE 16(IND) by pointing any decent UHF antenna to about 156 degrees on your compass, even from your attic IF there is no foil or metal blocking the way. PBS is channel 9 vhf, and a few degrees south of the others. It should present no major problem, its a strong, High VHF channel. If you want ION 26 or CW 5, you will need to add another antenna or a rotor.

Here's probably the cheapest and easiest solution for you:

Go to Radio Shack and pick up a u75-r antenna:


I suggest this because you can return it if it doesn't work, its cheap and local. (And I have one in my attic)

Put it in your attic or roof and aim it to about 170 degrees on your compass.
you should get 29, 4, 5, 60, 41, 12, and 23 virtual at a minimum. You should also get 17 off the back of the antenna, as well as 9 PBS (I get channel 8 VHF at 90 degrees off the side of this antenna). Channel 35 may come in even at about 50 degrees from where you're pointing because its pretty strong, and you may also get 10 (IND) if the beam on the U-75 is wide enough- and I believe it may be, or you may have to aim a bit further south to "split the difference" between 159 and 210 degrees. If 10 is not important to you then don't worry about it.

If you want channel 26 (ION, QUBO, and IONlife) you will need to add a second antenna pointing to 268 degrees. This will also make 32 a sure thing. If you really want CW, it can be had but since its VHF-lo, it means another antenna most likely, a vhf uhf combo on a rotor for 5VHF and 26 / 32 UHF. Do you really need CW 5 that bad?

Even if you had to buy 2 antennas, and a mast for roof mounting, it should come to around a hundred bucks (The R/S U75 is $35 each) and if you are doing more than 2 TVs you may need an amplifier. That will get you all your major networks except CW, with no rotor to worry about. But try the single antenna first and see what you get.
MrPogi,

Thank you so much! My husband saw your response yesterday. We are going to Radio Shack this morning to pick up the antenna you recommended. We had already decided to just focus on PBS, NBC, ABC, CBS and FOX. None of those other stations listed are of any interest to us, for now. I'll check into ION. If it's something we want then we'll go for a second antenna. Thanks again for the recommendation. Trying to find an antenna when you know nothing about antennas is very frustrating. We'll give the RS antenna a try and go from there. Thanks again!

Christy

PS-sorry for the double posts. I thought my posts were getting lost in cyberspace.
 

dkreichen1968

Moderator
Staff member
#7
I've had good luck with the U-75 and strong high VHF signals. That isn't true if you have multipath on the VHF signals though. When I lived in Palmer Lake (next to the mountains), I had to combo mine with a AntennaCraft Y-5-7-13. But in other situations (i.e. Colorado Springs) it works great for high VHF.
 

MrPogi

Moderator, , Webmaster of Cache Free TV
Staff member
#8
MrPogi,

Thank you so much! My husband saw your response yesterday. We are going to Radio Shack this morning to pick up the antenna you recommended. We had already decided to just focus on PBS, NBC, ABC, CBS and FOX. None of those other stations listed are of any interest to us, for now. I'll check into ION. If it's something we want then we'll go for a second antenna. Thanks again for the recommendation. Trying to find an antenna when you know nothing about antennas is very frustrating. We'll give the RS antenna a try and go from there. Thanks again!

Christy

PS-sorry for the double posts. I thought my posts were getting lost in cyberspace.
Try it out, if it works, great. If not, return it to the shack (save the packaging!) and let us know what the problems are. Lots of good advice in this forum for OTA!
 
Top