Cold Front Kills DTV Signal

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Old 11-27-10, 10:16 AM
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Cold Front Kills DTV Signal

I use a DTV converter box fed from an outside antenna.. When a cool weather front comes through the signal becomes unstable, cutting in and out. Turning the antenna 90 or more helps somewhat. This morning with even colder temperatures no signal on any station and turning the outside antenna didn't help. Tried a different brand of converter and finally with much turning got a poor signal on some stations.

Is this just a general fault with DTV or what?
 
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Old 11-28-10, 05:20 AM
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After the changeover was all said & done the FCC gulped when they realized that DTV didn't cover the same distances as good ol' analog. With analog, the picture degraded as distance from the transmitter increased. The picture got "snowy" and progressively worse until it was no longer watchable. With DTV it's a perfect picture until the signal strength drops below a threshold, then there is no picture at all.

If you're on the fringe, DTV signals can be affected by reflections (trees, buildings, etc.) and the weather.

Visit AntennaWeb to see if you have the correct antenna for your area. You can also try installing a preamp on the mast.
 
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Old 11-28-10, 02:20 PM
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Actually according to Antennaweb I am in the yellow zone for all the stations I watch and the stations are within 2 of each other. Trees yes but no hills are tall buildings. Should be easy and most times it is.

Long story short when I really checked the antenna out the squirrels had done a real number on it using it as a trampoline. I have enough parts from three old antennas to build another one and may do that but for now I'm actually doing OK with a passive indoor antenna, especially after sun set.

It was interesting reading reviews on indoor antennas. The expensive ones with amps and such did worse then the cheap passive.

Rick weren't all channels supposed to be moved to UF then the FCC backed off and left some on VHF? I remember early on reading how much better it would be when all channels moved to UF. You'd only need a UF antenna. Even saw plans for building the "ultimate" UF antenna allegedly better then factory made that would get all your channels.
 

Last edited by Rick Johnston; 11-28-10 at 06:36 PM. Reason: Correct typo.
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Old 11-28-10, 06:20 PM
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The designations are VHF (Very High Frequency) and UHF (Ultra High Frequency). TV stations broadcast on both, depending on the area.

The frequency designations are analogous to a subwoofer and tweeter without the midrange. Because of those gaps, it takes two different antennas to efficiently relay the signal. That's where antennaweb also comes in handy. It displays the frequencies and tells you whether you need VHF, UHF, or both.

BTW, the squirrels chew the insulation off the cable, which exposes it to water. Water changes the impedance relationship between the shield, the dielectric, and the center conductor. Instead of passing all frequencies in its bandwidth, the cable itself becomes erratic.
 
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Old 11-28-10, 07:28 PM
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Rick I wrote you a PM in reply to yours but your message box is full so I couldn't send it.
 
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Old 11-28-10, 08:33 PM
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Youtube UHF homemade antenna.
for a couple bucks (for the balun) you can make a homemade antenna that will out- perform most commercial made uhf antennas. I used stripped romex copper wire vs coat the hangers.

fred
 
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Old 11-28-10, 10:11 PM
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Youtube UHF homemade antenna.
for a couple bucks (for the balun) you can make a homemade antenna that will out- perform most commercial made uhf antennas. I used stripped romex copper wire vs coat the hangers.
I was about to make one when I found out that many of the VHF stations transmitting on UF during the transition were going back to VHF when analog ended. Fred are you able to get VHF channels with it? If so I might finish making the one I started.
 
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Old 11-29-10, 05:01 AM
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Originally Posted by ray2047 View Post
Rick I wrote you a PM in reply to yours but your message box is full so I couldn't send it.
Fixed. I keep forgetting to empty the system-generated notices. They fill up the box in a hurry.
 
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Old 11-29-10, 06:58 AM
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Ray,

It's a UHF only antenna, fortunately mine all stayed on UHF.
fred
 
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