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 Post subject: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Sat 25, 2020 2:43 am 
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Joined: Aug Tue 04, 2009 2:15 pm
Posts: 493
Location: Elmira, NY
A year ago I decided to break the cord with the local cable company. I bought a cheap Ematic model EDT32ANT from AMAZON.com. Its a amplified UHF antenna with a built-in rotator. I mounted it to my house with two pieces of unistrut. I used 10' of schedule 40, 2" and then reduced to a 10', 1-1-1/2, then a short piece of 1" into the antenna .

I expected to receive the Local NBC channel 18.1,.2.,3.and .4. I was pleasently surprised to receive 8 additional channels, from the next town. This is a cheap (inexpensive ) antenna, all plastic except for the aluminum elements. I think it would last longer if used in an attic rater than the outside. It did last the winter. It is very directional, and the rotor has no direction indicator.

the other night we has a storm and the amplifier quit working ( there is a little red led on antenna housing indicating when its active, and now no longer lit. With it inactive, i'm back to 4 channels.

I'm looking for a good replacement. I don't need the rotor function as all channels were in the same direction setting I'm using a distribution splitter in my basement at the end of forty feet of coax, then another 20' of coax to the second floor TV.
I think I need the amplifier at the antenna because of the long coax. Knowing this model works well, can anyone recommend a more rugged version that will hold up to the four seasons?
I need model numbers.

Thank you for your input.


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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Sat 25, 2020 3:16 am 
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Joined: Dec Tue 01, 2015 5:31 am
Posts: 2887
Location: Columbus Ohio
Get a omni antenna with an amp

https://www.amazon.com/Lava-Omnipro-HD- ... 171&sr=8-2

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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Sat 25, 2020 3:17 am 
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Joined: Dec Tue 01, 2015 5:31 am
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Location: Columbus Ohio
liking this one so much better

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07K6HMFZ6/re ... NrPXRydWU=

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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Sat 25, 2020 3:25 am 
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Joined: Feb Fri 13, 2009 5:09 am
Posts: 682
Location: Santa Clara, CA
There's a fellow who installs antennas for a living who does reviews of UHF antennas on YouTube, as well as tutorials that are more general in nature regarding installation and theory, as well as industry news. Do a search for "Antenna Man" - here is a sample:

https://youtu.be/yf52Erawyfg


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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Sat 25, 2020 4:14 am 
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Joined: Aug Tue 04, 2009 2:15 pm
Posts: 493
Location: Elmira, NY
I’ve seen the “antenna man “ On you tube, good info but not enough to answer my question.

Do you have personal experience with the two you recommended. Both say the are omi directional but the reviews say they are directional. My experience with Yaris is they are directional but offer more gain in one direction. I’m worried I might be sacrificing gain with the omi’s you suggested. Maybe I don’t need that gain;,not sure. My stations of interest Are on the same bearing.

I appreciate your suggestion. I just like further discussion. I read the reviews .LookS like a rugged unit.


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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Sat 25, 2020 7:02 am 
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Location: SoCal, 91387
For ages the 4 or 8 bay bow tie antennas have been the tried and true units to use. Adding a low noise UHF amp of course will also help.

Image

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Sat 25, 2020 4:25 pm 
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Joined: Feb Fri 13, 2009 5:09 am
Posts: 682
Location: Santa Clara, CA
Y2KEDDIE wrote:
Do you have personal experience with the two you recommended.


I do not, however I'm in the market like you. My stations of interest are from west of north to he northeast, and I was hoping to avoid the extra complexity of a rotator, but not dead set against it. I do have the luxury of being able to install my desired solution on the roof of my house, rather than having to install something in the attic.


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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Sat 25, 2020 7:29 pm 
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Joined: Apr Mon 04, 2011 4:23 am
Posts: 1099
Location: SW PA
Omni antennas are generally crap and don't provide much gain.

I'd go with an 8 bay like fifties suggested.


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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Wed 29, 2020 8:52 pm 
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Joined: Jan Mon 18, 2010 2:13 am
Posts: 21466
Location: Dayton Ohio
This is the one I bought and put up in my attic. Granted its only getting the Dayton stations, but works great!

https://www.newark.com/stellar-labs/30- ... dp/74R4979

For outdoor use, and able to rotate, I would probably choose this one.

https://www.newark.com/stellar-labs/30- ... dp/55W7740

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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Wed 29, 2020 10:18 pm 
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Joined: Apr Thu 12, 2007 3:24 am
Posts: 2438
Location: Milwaukee WI 53219
Over the years, some of my TVs had a signal strength readout buried in the menu selection. It might be helpful to know that to determine how fancy to go with an antenna.


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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Jul Thu 30, 2020 2:38 am 
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Joined: Jun Wed 08, 2011 2:33 am
Posts: 11038
Location: Ohio 45177
I have a flying saucer type antenna on an 8 foot mast on top of my roof. Single story house. I cannot get all OTR stations consistently with it, it is variable by time of day, for instance. VHF and UHF. None of my stations are nearby. 35-40 miles. Cincinnati stations at least as far if not farther, but not all of them, but there is a building between me and Cinn. down the street that is higher than my antenna. And I think it has a metal roof. In the past I got some Columbus stations which would be, I dunno, 60-70 miles? Last rescan I lost them. But it is a disc the size of a dinner plate, so not bad. I am sure any sort of decent vintage real TV antenna might whip it but would need to be rotated all over the place to do so. IF I could get another 10-20 feet of height, I bet that would be much better. I think that height is equally important with any gain, except on pretty close stations, within 10-15 miles.

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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Aug Sun 02, 2020 2:03 pm 
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Joined: Aug Tue 04, 2009 2:15 pm
Posts: 493
Location: Elmira, NY
Update:
I took down my roof antenna.(EMATC EDT312 with amplifier). It had worked great for over a year. Before it quit working. Turned out the center conductor of the coax had broken, Replaced/easy fix. The Supplied coax is foam filled type and likely very low loss. It’s extremely flexible but not very reliable. The antenna was on a 2” pvc pipe/mast 25’ above ground.
In the interim, I tried a GE PRO ATTIC ANTENNA Model 33692 by JASCO, mounted on s film camera , 5’ tripod connected to one TV. With this unamplified antenna I received 12 UHF channels.
I connected this antenna to my 4 way splitter, and lost all but 4 stations to the furthest set upstairs. It is obvious the long coax run was attenuating the signal. I replaced the splitter with a distribution amplifier and all 12 channels were restored.

The Attic Pro antenna is a bit flimsy, so I went back to the EMATC antenna on the Tripod and got the same results.
My final installation, I mounted the EMATIC antenna, 10th’ from the ground on the side of my house. Since the antenna has a mast mounted amplifier I went back to the 4 way splitter. I Repaired and rerouted the original coax and got nothing! The coax broke again. I replaced the entire coax run and now everything works great, 12 channels.

The EMATC antenna is a great antenna, but the coax supplied with it is crap!
The antenna is extremely directional, but has an internal rotor which is good for fine tuning the direction. Unfortunately the rotor doesn’t have an indicator. You rotate it for best signal, set it, and leave it be.
For $40, including shipping and tax, thru Amazon, it’s not a bad antenna.

In my case, height made no difference, but I learned a lot about the effect of the coax. I needed the amplifier to overcome the long length of the coax and splitter.

I’m sure the supplied foam filled coax was very low loss, but at the expense of durability. If bent or pulled the conductor breaks. In my case the center conductor broke. It was soldered to a gold plated pin of the F connector. It broke once at the connector solder connection, and the 2nd time , center conductor in the length of cable.
I noticed the shield was aluminum and then an aluminum braid around the foil. The connector ends of the cable seem likely to break with aluminum connections, and stiff center conductor.

In my original troubleShooting of the EMATIC controller, I found several poor solder connections. The chassis female F connectors were making intermittent ground connections.

The controller supplies 7 VDC for the amplifier, and 14 VAC for the rotor reversing motor.

All in all this is a great inexpensive antenna when working, just cheap quality control and coax.


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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Aug Sun 02, 2020 4:44 pm 
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Joined: Jun Mon 24, 2013 3:00 pm
Posts: 1621
Location: Champaign IL 61822
I should say what I am now using for a UHF antenna. Its a 54 inch long dipole
on my balcony, not folded. It feeds RG6 through a 1:1 transformer. This goes
10 feet and is split with a trivial one cap, one coil splitter at about 200 MHz.
The low frequencies go to my FM tuner, the high through a cheap amp to
a splitter and my TVs/boxes. It gets all my UHF TV stations except a low power one
exactly off its end. It gets that one if turned 90 degrees. The one VHF station uses
a separate antenna in a different spot, with a combiner after the preamp.

Repacked channels make an easy job for an antenna. It used to be harder.


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 Post subject: Re: Finding a suitable uhf outdoor antenna
PostPosted: Aug Sun 02, 2020 9:29 pm 
Member

Joined: Aug Tue 04, 2009 2:15 pm
Posts: 493
Location: Elmira, NY
I guess it just takes a lot of experimenting. Since I still have a mast above my roof, I decided to put up a discone scanner antenna. I will be interested to see what that pulls in.

My end goal was to find the smallest physically but rugged permanent antenna, and still get the 12 stations.we get some heavy snows and winds here in N.Y.

The EMATIC antenna has a spherical foot print of about two feet. The elements and body are aluminum and plastic. I now have two (one a spare), and it’s mounted only 10 feet off the ground, so I think I’m good for a few winters.


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