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Adding onto an existing VHF?

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Adding onto an existing VHF?

Postby mt6127 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 9:54 am

I live in western CT (06877) - with the usual hills/trees about 45 miles NNE from NYC. I currently have a fairly large VHF set up with amp, but realize most of the channels are moving to UHF. What is the recommended way to add to an existing VHF - ie wire in parallel, use a splitter or coax T?? Also, considering most channels are either east or south, I am planning to add a rotor as well. In terms of the UHF antennas, I am looking to compare the Antennas Direct 91XG to their DB8 for my application. Anything else to consider?

mt6127
 
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Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 9:35 am

Re: Adding onto an existing VHF?

Postby tigerbangs on Sat Jun 13, 2009 11:39 am

It would help to know which VHF antenna that you have, and which amplifier. Usually, when we add UHF to a VHF antenna, we add the UHF antenna on the same mast about 4' above the VHF antenna, and incorporate the UHF into the signal path using either a dual-input UHF-VHF preamplifier or an antenna joiner like a Pico-Macom UVSJ, which will allow the two antennas wo feed one coaxial cable. If your preamplifier does not currently support UHF, we will need to replace the preamp with one that does. If you find that you have a VHF-only preamp, my suggestion is to consider a Channel Master Titan 7777 preamplifier and use the AntennasDirect XG-91 mounted 4' above your current VHF antenna.

While the DB-8 is a worthy antenna, when combined with the mass of the existing VHF antenna, it provides quite a wind load that can jeopardize the antenna's ultimate integrity. The XG-91 has similar performance, but presents a much smaller face to the wind, and is considerably lighter, making the antenna system less-top-heavy.

A rotator will allow you to see the major Connecticut channels as well as the NYC channels, and is a good plan.

tigerbangs
 
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Re: Adding onto an existing VHF?

Postby mt6127 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 6:04 pm

The existing VHF is a 15 year old Radio Shack "fringe" model, not sure the exact number but it was the best the local store carried then. Given the analog was not all that great, I am open to upgrade the VHF since a few of the NYC stations are staying in the VHF range (I know 7 and 13 are, and I think one other...). With that in mind, will a "deep fringe" VHF like the Winegard 8200U or CM3671 make sense to a total package with the rotator, a CM7777 preamp, AD 91XG UHF and then the recommended VHF for the 50 or so miles from 06877 to NYC? I am planning to split for two TVs on the down side (a Samsung A550 and a Zenith DTT901 converter box). Two last questions - 1) is there any recommendations on location of the pre-amp to the antennas (ie short as possible) and the location of the power supply relative to the pre-amp (other than "inside the house"? 2) any thoughts on chimney mounts vs fixing the mast to another point along the roof? (I suspect the soot from the furnace can corrode guide wires and tarnish the surface). Thanks for the feedback, much appreciated.

mt6127
 
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Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 9:35 am

Re: Adding onto an existing VHF?

Postby tigerbangs on Sat Jun 13, 2009 9:56 pm

First of all, don't waste your money on a big all-channel antenna like a Winegard HD8200U or a Channel Master Crossfire 3671 While both are good antennas, you are only interested channels 7, 10, 11, and 13, which are high-band VHF stations. The aforementioned antennas are designed for low-band VHF, high-hand VHF AND UHF. Unfortunately, their UHF parts are not as good as using a separate UHF antenna like the XG-91, and you have no further need for their low-band VHF capability. I suggest using a high-gain VHF high-band yagi like a Winegard YA-1713 plus an AntennasDirect XG-91 mounted above a rotator. Mount the YA-1713 right above the rotator, and mount the XG-91 4' above the YA-1713 on the same mast Use a Channel Master Titan 7777 preamplifier, which has separate VHF and UHF inputs on the mast-mounted preamplifier. Connect the two antennas using coaxial cable to their respective inputs on the preamplifier. Before making any connections on that preamplifier, open the case and find the input selector that allows combined or separate inputs, and slide the switch to "separate. As for mounting, you can attach to a chimney if you like, a gable or use a tripod. Remember, however, that altitude is your friend, and that the higher the antenna system, the better the reception.

Bring you coaxial cable and rotator control cable inside the house. In New England, where basements are common, its customary to find a place in the basement that has AC power available and is equidistant to the two TV sets. Mount your preamplifier power supply in that spot, and mount your coaxial splitter AFTER the power supply. If you have indoor coaxial cable already, and it makes a convenient run to your TV sets, use it, but do not attempt to use twin-lead 300 ohm cable to connect to the coaxial cable.

I usually recommend using a Channel Master 9521a rotator, but I understand that there is a supply issue with them at the moment that makes them hard to find. I suggest using a rotator since you also have the Hartford- New Haven stations available to you as well as the NYC channels, and its always nice to have duplicate networks available in case of preemption of programming.

http://www.winegard.com
http://www.antennasdirect.com
http://www.channelmaster.com
http://www.channelmasterintl.com/docume ... lation.pdf

tigerbangs
 
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