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Signal strength on 3000 vs on a normal television
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 11:46 am Reply with quote
ericv13
 
Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 3




I have a Samsung 409DX with a built in ATSC tuner, when I plug my amplified attic antenna into it (through 50' of decent rg6u-qs cable) all my local stations (as reported by antennaweb) come in with a reported signal strength of either all bars or 1 under all bars (far into the green, no glitches on any channels). I can also connect a simple wire dipole to the back of this TV and pick up most channels about 1/2 into the green on their signal meter (3-4 bars from full). This all leads me to believe I have a fairly strong set of signals here.

When I plug the same cable into the 3000 card it reports signal strengths around 50-60 and won't lock. I can attach a very directional UHF antenna and with sufficient fiddling get 85% (with $$$$'s on the dtvsignal meter) on any given station, but I have to pick one of N stations, I can't get them all.

According to antennaweb I'm 20miles from just about every station (they are clustered together in an antenna farm in NE Minneapolis), though some are a couple of degrees off (in a nearby antennta farm, still about 20 miles away).

The question is: is the tuner in the 3000 known to be very weak or is this card just broken? If the tuner is known to be weak, is there any magic I can use with multiple directional antennas to get a single coax with all my stations on it at sufficient strength?
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2006 11:28 am Reply with quote
Scott Larson
 
Joined: 15 Oct 2003
Posts: 713
Location: Portland, OR




Your Samsung uses a newer generation ATSC receiver chip. ATSC receivers have improved incredibly since the HD-3000 was released.

You can certainly get the HD-3000 to work but it'll be more picky about the antenna. At 20 miles you can probably use a less directional UHF antenna and get all the stations. I'm actually using a yagi with most of the elements removed so it's only as directional as I need.
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2006 1:13 pm Reply with quote
ericv13
 
Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 3




I was hoping that wasn't the case, but I'm not surprised.

I guess I'll hit Radio Shack and get a bigger attic antenna, I guess I really don't care how big it is (80"?) since its hiding in the attic.

Its pretty close on most channels already so hopefully this will do it. Thanks for the confirmation about the 3000.
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 5:24 am Reply with quote
waterhead
 
Joined: 24 Apr 2005
Posts: 299




You REALLY need to consider putting the antenna outside. Most people with reception problems are using indoor or attic antennas. The argument that it is ugly won't fly around here.
If your homeowners association says that you can't, I've heard that the Federal Government (FCC?) says that they must let you.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 12:39 pm Reply with quote
ericv13
 
Joined: 23 Jan 2006
Posts: 3




I may put one on the roof when the snow melts. Unfortunately my roof is steep and covered in snow/ice, no chance I'm climbing around on it until Spring.

We don't have anything that would prohibit this in our covenants (they mostly say I can't piss anyone off with an eyesore, and no one around here would be able to see the thing w/o standing on my property anyway). Neighbors have a 10' C band dish (abandonded Sad ) and they haven't gotten in trouble.

There was actually a point to this post: is it futile to put in a bigger attic antenna? Its a bunch of work and if its likely to not help I'd rather not do it. Can I gang 2 antennas together?
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 2:06 pm Reply with quote
Scott Larson
 
Joined: 15 Oct 2003
Posts: 713
Location: Portland, OR




The problem with getting a "bigger" antenna is that it will be even more directional so you'll only make it even more impossible to get all the stations without reaiming the antenna every time you change the channel. If you're getting the stations individually well enough, you shouldn't need to worry about moving the antenna outside if you don't have to.

I strongly recommend that you experiment with the directional UHF antenna you were using and try disabling the outer elements on the boom (the ones on the end) to reduce its directionality (please pretend that's a word). Normally all you have to do is rotate them 90 degrees so they're in-line with the boom. If you aim the antenna right in the middle of the antenna farm, you should see the average strength of the "outer" stations increase as you disable the elements. If this works most likely all the stations will have acceptable strength and it might not even decrease the strength of the stronger stations.
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2006 10:34 pm Reply with quote
maestro
 
Joined: 10 Jul 2004
Posts: 18




ericv13 wrote:
There was actually a point to this post: is it futile to put in a bigger attic antenna? Its a bunch of work and if its likely to not help I'd rather not do it. Can I gang 2 antennas together?


I have a 110" Winegard antenna that barely fits in my attic (above 2nd floor), and there was a significant difference in (analog) TV reception compared to being on the ground or even 2nd floor (when testing). I also have mine going through about 50' of RG6, and my HD-3000 reception is 95-100% on most stations. I am 30 miles from Salt Lake City, and all the transmission towers are in the same direction, so I made sure my antenna was pointing as closest to that direction (as given by antennaweb) as I could.

I don't know if that helps, but getting above other buildings is much more important for UHF than for VHF.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 11:45 am Reply with quote
Scott Larson
 
Joined: 15 Oct 2003
Posts: 713
Location: Portland, OR




In some odd cases it works the opposite. I've been getting perfect reception ever since I brought my outside antenna indoors and crammed it into an attic space in the back of my house. That's because I was getting multipath from surrounding buildings and even passing vehicles when it was outdoors above my house. Now it's far away from the street and less exposed to sources of multipath. The overall strength of the signals is probably lower but I'm only six miles from the towers so strength wasn't a problem.
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Signal strength on 3000 vs on a normal television
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