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  • OTA Antenna questions

    ok so I looked into OTA a few years back and put an antenna in my attic and it works. Gets everything except ABC which is VHF in my area. I get all the other NBC, Fox, PBS, etc... and I prefer watching NFL OTA...

    so DirecTV Now is price hiking (but I'm still getting a cheaper price due to AT&T unlimited customer), so its still kinda worth keeping but has me always looking to see if alternatives can be found, wife requires Hallmark channels so this keeps me on some streaming service. DTV Now is $35 for me now and I'm grandfathered in on this package, else it goes up to $90/m!!!!! How is that saving money? I'm already $70/m 250d xfinity cable modem + $40 with tax for DTV Now... so $110/m as to I can get a 2y double play for $59.99 (so they say till they add fees/taxes/ports/etc..... ) so of course gotta look ...

    but it got me tinkering with my OTA setup again....

    I bought 2 antennas from Walmart and they do not get nearly the channels my current antenna gets and cost way more.

    so I'm getting to my question... be patient.. [:-P>


    while googling, I found this...
    https://www.bestreviews.guide/hdtv-a...door-150-miles

    notice how many of them all look the same with different ratings... anyone here able to put their mind to why there is such a difference?
    fyi - mine is @ 10th... with 7.1 score which is pretty bad.

    I'm just contemplating buying the 1st spot one and trying it... thoughts?

    so my setup is

    antenna in attic
    cable from antenna to box in basement
    out of box on port 1 into an HDHomerun Connect Quattro (so quad tuner onto network and pc set with nextpvr for dvr features then rips commercials, converts and sends to plex)
    out of box on port 2 into a cable booster where all TV's come back too, thus all jacks in house are hot and active for OTA
    HW - i5 4570T @2.9ghz runs @11w | 8gb ram | 128gb ssd OS - Win10 x64

    HS - HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435

    Plugins - BLRF 2.0.94.0 | Concord 4 3.1.13.10 | HSBuddy 3.9.605.5 | HSTouch Server 3.0.0.68 | RFXCOM 30.0.0.36 | X10 3.0.0.36 | Z-Wave 3.0.1.190

    Hardware - EdgePort/4 DB9 Serial | RFXCOM 433MHz USB Transceiver | Superbus 2000 for Concord 4 | TI103 X-10 Interface | WGL Designs W800 RF | Z-Net Z-Wave Interface

  • #2
    I'm guessing that the website is just assigning scores based on reviews on other sites (and maybe only Amazon). Seems like their main goal is to make money on Amazon referrals, so I'd take it all with a big grain of salt. For signals that are marginal, having the antenna closer to the box may help quite a bit. Depending on the coax used, there can be quite a bit of loss there, so reducing the distance or replacing the cable with lower loss coax can make a lot of difference.
    HS 3.0.0.548: 1990 Devices 1172 Events
    Z-Wave 3.0.1.262: 126 Nodes on one Z-Net

    Comment


    • #3
      Take a look at the chart here: https://www.w4rp.com/ref/coax.html. Use the 400MHz and 700 MHz lines as the indicators. For every 3db, the signal strength is cut in half. So at a minimum I'd use RG11 instead of RG58.
      HS 3.0.0.548: 1990 Devices 1172 Events
      Z-Wave 3.0.1.262: 126 Nodes on one Z-Net

      Comment


      • #4
        I'm not sure if ill get to it tonight but I'm going to take the antenna out of my attic and take it out on the back deck and run a shorter cable and see what I come up with. wondering if being in the attic, that it has to go through thick plywood and 50 year shingles.. if that is also hurting it. figure outside, I can aim, etc,
        HW - i5 4570T @2.9ghz runs @11w | 8gb ram | 128gb ssd OS - Win10 x64

        HS - HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435

        Plugins - BLRF 2.0.94.0 | Concord 4 3.1.13.10 | HSBuddy 3.9.605.5 | HSTouch Server 3.0.0.68 | RFXCOM 30.0.0.36 | X10 3.0.0.36 | Z-Wave 3.0.1.190

        Hardware - EdgePort/4 DB9 Serial | RFXCOM 433MHz USB Transceiver | Superbus 2000 for Concord 4 | TI103 X-10 Interface | WGL Designs W800 RF | Z-Net Z-Wave Interface

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by TeleFragger View Post
          ok so I looked into OTA a few years back and put an antenna in my attic and it works. Gets everything except ABC which is VHF in my area. I get all the other NBC, Fox, PBS, etc... and I prefer watching NFL OTA...

          so DirecTV Now is price hiking (but I'm still getting a cheaper price due to AT&T unlimited customer), so its still kinda worth keeping but has me always looking to see if alternatives can be found, wife requires Hallmark channels so this keeps me on some streaming service. DTV Now is $35 for me now and I'm grandfathered in on this package, else it goes up to $90/m!!!!! How is that saving money? I'm already $70/m 250d xfinity cable modem + $40 with tax for DTV Now... so $110/m as to I can get a 2y double play for $59.99 (so they say till they add fees/taxes/ports/etc..... ) so of course gotta look ...

          but it got me tinkering with my OTA setup again....

          I bought 2 antennas from Walmart and they do not get nearly the channels my current antenna gets and cost way more.

          so I'm getting to my question... be patient.. [:-P>


          while googling, I found this...
          https://www.bestreviews.guide/hdtv-a...door-150-miles

          notice how many of them all look the same with different ratings... anyone here able to put their mind to why there is such a difference?
          fyi - mine is @ 10th... with 7.1 score which is pretty bad.

          I'm just contemplating buying the 1st spot one and trying it... thoughts?

          so my setup is

          antenna in attic
          cable from antenna to box in basement
          out of box on port 1 into an HDHomerun Connect Quattro (so quad tuner onto network and pc set with nextpvr for dvr features then rips commercials, converts and sends to plex)
          out of box on port 2 into a cable booster where all TV's come back too, thus all jacks in house are hot and active for OTA
          I don't normally trust those "best reviews" type sites... They usually are about as scientific as which product pays the best referral fee when the shopping link is clicked.

          I have one of these up in the tallest part of the attic and the reception is incredible. My neighbors have a 50' outdoor antenna with rotor and I get the same channels as they get. Now granted, my house is on a hill and the attic is around 40' above ground. But still, I'm impressed with how well it performs indoors. Only drawback was the cost. But if it lasts 10+ years then cost is not as much of a concern.

          --Barry

          Comment


          • #6
            I tried attic antennas, the roof creates too much of a shield. Once I mounted a smaller antenna to the eave I was able to get the proper reception.

            The antic antenna was four times the size. Lots of multipath issues in the antic

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by TeleFragger View Post
              I'm not sure if ill get to it tonight but I'm going to take the antenna out of my attic and take it out on the back deck and run a shorter cable and see what I come up with. wondering if being in the attic, that it has to go through thick plywood and 50 year shingles.. if that is also hurting it. figure outside, I can aim, etc,
              You might try putting the booster in the attic--before any splits in the distribution--so it's getting maximum signal on the input side. And if any of the runs throughout your house aren't in use, disconnect them. Also make sure you have good quality connectors and splitter(s), well-installed. I found I was losing a lot of signal and upgrading those helped.

              Most of the channels in my area come from one general area about 20 miles away. Unfortunately I live directly behind a hill relative to the sources. I had an older model similar to this installed in the attic and it worked ok--except during stormy weather--but it's been great since mounting it on a 2nd story eave.
              https://store.antennasdirect.com/Cle...V-Antenna.html
              -Wade

              Comment


              • #8
                I suspect that for DTV reception, small difference in antenna design are not a critical factor. "Ratings" are unlikely to reflect direct, head-to-head comparisons for reception of distant / weak stations.

                If you haven't already, visit the FCC site and TV Fool.
                They will give you a map that identifies all local broadcasters, signal strength / reception that takes terrain into account, and detailed aiming information.
                I also found that some channels (esp. UHF) are much more sensitive to antenna aim than others. It pays to make small adjustments in antenna placement and direction to see if the signal quality changes.
                Although an antenna in the attic will not have as much sensitivity as one that is outside, there will be much less corrosion and potential for wind damage if the antenna is not exposed.

                PS. Some stations sold some of their band width a few years ago and this summer they will be adjusting their broadcast frequencies to complete the release of the bands. That will require rescanning to find their signal again. (I assume they will announce the change, but since they have no idea who uses their OTA signal, it will be a general announcement that may be easy to miss.)
                Mike____________________________________________________________ __________________
                HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.548

                HW: Stargate | NX8e | CAV6.6 | Squeezebox | PCS | WGL 800RF, Rain8Net+ | RFXCOM | QSE100D | Vantage Pro | Green-Eye | X10: XTB-232, -IIR | Edgeport/8 | Way2Call | Ecobee3

                Comment


                • #9
                  Here today have two antennas in the attic for HD OTA in the midwest. Old combo VHF / UHF with amplier / RG6 going to the basement and a DIY'd cardboard box UHF antenna.

                  These are mounted in the attic of a two story home. Split in the basement with another amplifier splitter going to two HD Homerun OTA devices and direct to 4 (5) LCD TVs.

                  Works great. Your OTA for football will be best as DTV compresses a bunch.

                  Purchased and tested a couple of those flat amplied antennas on Amazon for family member and friend. I mounted one behind the LCD and another one on a basement wall and both worked fine. Neighbor put one of these on his roof and it worked well for him.

                  Also have DTV here (from the very beginning of DTV) and ISP Internet. My grandfathered DTV account went up when AT&T took over (slammed).
                  AT&T was already on my S list for slamming my grandfathered 5 cell phone accounts (unlimited everything) a few years before.

                  Just recently upgraded my old SB-6120 (8/4) modem to a newer SB-6190 (32/8) Gb modem.

                  hxxps://www.arris.com/surfboard/products/cable-modems/sb6190/

                  Also upgraded KODI box(s) from an old Intel Aopen digital engine (1080) to smaller faster 4K HD 5 watt Octocore ARM "TV Box" / Mali 820 running KODI in linux (no android here). I like to stream live TV from around the world and now see it offered in HD 4K. (use KODI today for Amazon / Netflix).

                  I am currently switching over the HS3 Lite box here to a little TV box (went from RPi to Pine64 to Dual AMD cube PC now to mini TV box headless).

                  BTW check out Cocoontech relating to your issues and many CTers that have switched like you these days...

                  Personally here kept DTV for WAF only ...cooking shows et al which you can stream nowadays...
                  - Pete

                  Auto mator
                  Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU 16Gb- Mono 6.8X
                  Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.8X
                  HS4 Pro - V4.0.5.0 - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Kaby Lake CPU - 32Gb - Mono 6.8X
                  HS4 Lite -

                  X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation. OmniPro 2, Russound zoned audio, Smartthings hub, Hubitat Hub, and Home Assistant

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Pete View Post

                    BTW check out Cocoontech relating to your issues and many CTers that have switched like you these days...

                    Personally here kept DTV for WAF only ...cooking shows et al which you can stream nowadays...

                    check cocoontech for which issues?

                    yeah but I could keep DTV for WAF as well, but behind the scenes, she don't care the true behind the scenes if its cable tv or DTV Now... (you mention DTV and just to confirm that is different than DTV Now)...

                    so I could switch back to cable tv and be cheaper... and I still want OTA for NFL, etc to which I watch that way now. Only thing is I cant get abc going.. and it seems my antenna is uhf/vhf and only ch6 (abc) is on vhf.. hah..
                    HW - i5 4570T @2.9ghz runs @11w | 8gb ram | 128gb ssd OS - Win10 x64

                    HS - HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435

                    Plugins - BLRF 2.0.94.0 | Concord 4 3.1.13.10 | HSBuddy 3.9.605.5 | HSTouch Server 3.0.0.68 | RFXCOM 30.0.0.36 | X10 3.0.0.36 | Z-Wave 3.0.1.190

                    Hardware - EdgePort/4 DB9 Serial | RFXCOM 433MHz USB Transceiver | Superbus 2000 for Concord 4 | TI103 X-10 Interface | WGL Designs W800 RF | Z-Net Z-Wave Interface

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      check cocoontech for which issues?

                      No issues...just converting over to OTA, getting rid of cable TV and or Satellite TV and streaming mostly by a few Cocoontech users.

                      Here at one point in time was using Comcast, DTV, Verizon FIOS and DISH for TV...way long time ago...

                      Here is one example.

                      Streaming TV experience Hulu-Youtube-DirecTV Now
                      - Pete

                      Auto mator
                      Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU 16Gb- Mono 6.8X
                      Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.548 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.8X
                      HS4 Pro - V4.0.5.0 - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Kaby Lake CPU - 32Gb - Mono 6.8X
                      HS4 Lite -

                      X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation. OmniPro 2, Russound zoned audio, Smartthings hub, Hubitat Hub, and Home Assistant

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Someone on another forum showed me this..
                        $16/M... amc.. both halmarks...3 streams and unlimited recordings. Gonna start trial and check it out...

                        https://try.philo.com
                        HW - i5 4570T @2.9ghz runs @11w | 8gb ram | 128gb ssd OS - Win10 x64

                        HS - HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435

                        Plugins - BLRF 2.0.94.0 | Concord 4 3.1.13.10 | HSBuddy 3.9.605.5 | HSTouch Server 3.0.0.68 | RFXCOM 30.0.0.36 | X10 3.0.0.36 | Z-Wave 3.0.1.190

                        Hardware - EdgePort/4 DB9 Serial | RFXCOM 433MHz USB Transceiver | Superbus 2000 for Concord 4 | TI103 X-10 Interface | WGL Designs W800 RF | Z-Net Z-Wave Interface

                        Comment

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