OTA antenna advice request for Gainesville, FL

gatorgrabber

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#1
Wow, I wonder how many new members' first posts start kind of like this? :D I'm looking to add an outdoor antenna (@ around 20') and can use some help in the selection process.

Here's my TV Fool link: TV Fool

I'm just looking for a sound, sane setup that averages out well for my conditions. I'm looking to wean myself off of Cox Cable and this is my first step down that road. Thanks all! :thumb:
 

Jim5506

DTVUSA Member
#2
First try and indoor antenna, then maybe an amplified indoor antenna if the regular one does not work.

Next, since you have strong signals but they fan out from NNW to WNW to SSE look at the Winegard MS1000.

This is an unamplified flying saucer looking omnidirectional antenna.

It has pretty short range, because it is omnidirectional but should puck up all of your local channels.

There may be a problem picking up further channels because you have a couple of stations less than 2 miles from you that might overload your tuner if you amplify the signal.

The last alternative would be to have a rotator on a standard all channel outdoor antenna.
 
#3
:welcome: gatorgrabber!

Very happy to report that WNBW Channel 9 gets you NBC and Me-TV, so you don't have to worry about those 2Edge stations way down in the red. It does mean that you probably want high VHF for channel 9. You can probably ignore VHF low Channel 5, which is a weather station. You also need a wide beam width to get signals from 180 to 284 magnetic.

You definitely don't want an amplifier, with that 84.8 NM monster coming from a mile and a half away.

I'll have to recommend a C2-V from Antennas Direct. It's a little pricey, but it fits the bill. Aim it at 232 magnetic, and you should get the first 8 to 13 stations on your TV Fool Report, which includes ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, Fox, Me-TV, Movies, The CW, and a couple that I don't know about. Nice lineup! :thumb:

Rick

[Edit:] Sorry, Jim, we cross posted.
 
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MrPogi

Moderator, , Webmaster of Cache Free TV
Staff member
#4
DO NOT USE ANY ANTENNA WITH AN AMPLIFIER!!!
Channel 36 is so close to you it will overload your tuner.
 

gatorgrabber

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#5
Hi all!
Thanks for the kind responses. Yes, I live in the proverbial shadow of a tower just down the road. I'm kind of on the run today but will look up the suggested antennas this evening and get back with you all with my (inevitable) questions. Cheers!
 

gatorgrabber

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#6
Okay, back at the computer. I briefly tried an RCA indoor flat panel from Lowes and really wasn't too impressed. A couple of good signals but not much else. The MS1000 and the C2-V both look interesting and straight forward. Any considerations that would help me choose one over the other? Also, at what height should I be striving for? I have a decent opening on the S end of the house that gives me lots of installation options. It'll be less than 75' to the TV tuner.
 
#7
Okay, back at the computer. I briefly tried an RCA indoor flat panel from Lowes and really wasn't too impressed. A couple of good signals but not much else.
No, those flat plastic antennas are not recommended here.

The MS1000 and the C2-V both look interesting and straight forward. Any considerations that would help me choose one over the other?
Like I said, you don't need channel 5 (you can get weather if needed on WRUF-LD 10). So you don't need low VHF. So I'd go for the higher gain on a C2-V. An omnidirectional antenna is limited to 5 dBi of gain, and from the looks of Winegard's charts, the MS1000 is lower still, through much of the UHF band.

By the way, WUOF-LD is off the air, so no need to worry about 342 magnetic. Pointing your CV-2 at 232 degrees magnetic puts all twelve top stations besides WUOF well within its 70+ degree beam width. Very few antennas have such a wide beam width, which is why I recommended it. Below the top twelve, you're at 5.4 NM and then negative territory, for which you'd need a huge Yagi pointed in another direction. I don't see anything unique down there, so I doubt you need or want those stations.

Also, at what height should I be striving for? I have a decent opening on the S end of the house that gives me lots of installation options. It'll be less than 75' to the TV tuner.
You want line of sight to the transmitters, if possible. As long as there are no trees or buildings in the way, 20 feet should be fine. If more height will catch the signal coming over an obstruction, then you want the extra height.

Rick
 

gatorgrabber

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#11
I was able to locate a C2-V but have not been able to find obtain a mounting mast (locally) that will get me to 20'. If I need to order such a beast, are there any quick suggestions on what to go with? Chain-link fence top rail (galvanized) perhaps?
 
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#12
Chain link top rail or 1 1/4" EMT from the home center. Each is around 10-10.5' long.

You can install the C2's VHF reflector on a C4, just swap out one of the two stock reflector panels. It bolts right up.
 
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#13
I've used 20' chain link fence top rail for antenna mast. It will need additional guy wires or support structure of some sort. With the stuff I've used clamped to a 4' post at the bottom is not enough support.
 
#15
I probably wouldn't it's a small antenna, but 11' is a lot of free standing mast. It's up to you. I've built a lot of things that looked strong enough to me that weren't.
Steve
 

gatorgrabber

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#17
I just wanted to report back that I have the C2-V up and receiving...wow! :azn: I'm getting the first 11 channels on my TV Fool list and they're coming in crystal clear. What a difference compared to cable! It's only mounted at 10' for the time being (aimed at 232 degrees) and I was wondering if it's worth adding the additional 10' of height. Any thoughts? Again, thanks!
 
#18
If your getting adequate signal at 10' under all conditions I wouldn't change it. Giving it a good test at 10' will take some time. Keep a back up plan of going higher if need be.
 

gatorgrabber

DTVUSA Jr. Member
#19
I'm still trying to figure out the TV Fool chart. I'm getting most of what's in the green, just not all of it. I'm also trying to sort out the 'sub-channels', or whatever they're called. Everything's clear, so that's a start!
 
#20
I'm still trying to figure out the TV Fool chart. I'm getting most of what's in the green, just not all of it. I'm also trying to sort out the 'sub-channels', or whatever they're called. Everything's clear, so that's a start!
Somehow, I missed the follow through on this for a couple weeks.

Hey, I said 8 to 13 of the top stations, didn't I? :thumb: I think I mentioned WUOF is off the air, and also WRUF reall channel 5 is low VHF, so not expected with the C2-V -- although it's very strong, so maybe possible. Also, WBXG, WYME, WRUF, WTBZ and W42DJ are all analog, so you have to press a different button on the remote to get them. (Analog shouldn't need a scan, but with all the different TVs on the market, ya never know.)

Welcome to the world OTA viewing! No cable to trip you up and tie down the budget!!

Rick
 

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