: ON - Kanata, Barrhaven, Nepean, West of Greenbelt - OTA
2012-03-21, 06:28 AM
Hi Dave --
With my CM7778 I had to open it up and disable the FM trap (theres a little switch inside the case) to pick up Global on RF6.
2012-03-21, 09:45 AM
Dave, when you say you are using rabbit ears, what do you mean? Does it also have a loop for UHF? Is it amplified? A model number would be useful.
Also, as OTAJuncqui said, your TVFool report would be useful.
Global is tough to receive indoors. Attic installations can be better, but an outdoor antenna is best.
Regarding the CM-7777, in general I don't recommended amplifying indoor antennas (with certain exceptions). Your first course of action should be to get a better antenna and installing it either in the attic (better) or outside (best).
2012-03-21, 11:50 AM
Thanks everyone for the quick responses!
My TV Fool report is:
And I have set it to my homepage.
- I noticed on channel master's website that they recommend the 7778 for distances less than 20 miles and 7777 for distances more than 20 miles. It seems all the channels I'm looking for are less that 20 miles, could that be hurting my chances?
- I'll try to disable the FM trap like you suggested when I get home
RE: Current Antenna
- I am using rabbit ears which I just had kicking around the house.
- "Replacement VHF dipole". I linked to it, but the moderator removed it. No UHF loop, not amplified.
I'm in a 3 storey town-house, so getting an antenna on the roof may be a challenge, but I'm certainly open to an attic installation if required.
2012-03-21, 07:39 PM
I am not that far from you (And have an almost identical signal report). I found I needed an primary antenna pointing to HC (SW) and a separate VHF antenna for Global pointing at CF (N). My Global VHF dipole antenna is discussed above, the main antenna is this one (Without any reflectors) http://www.diytvantennas.com/sbgh.html (FWIW I did try to make a second one using 12 gauge copper, it was no better than the first one using the 14 gauge multi-purpose wire.)
I think mine is pointed a little south of HC and collects the strong signals from CF from the rear. The CM7777 combines the VHF and UHF signals as well as amplifies. I am able to get all the channels you listed consistently with this set-up. I am sure you can buy antennas that match this/better this set-up, but there is something quite stimulating in throwing together a bunch of wire, screws and tape and then seeing HD TV display.
2012-03-21, 08:08 PM
Hi, I tried turning the FM trap to "Out" and it brings in CBC much better but global is still about the same, I can get it if I put the antenna in a random place in the room but I loose half the other channels.
I'm also a little confused about the whole VHF/UHF topic. I have rabbit ears and seem to get channels up to 69 but the following description states I should only be able to pick up stations up to 13...
"In Canada, TV stations broadcast over-the-air on either VHF (channels 2-13) or UHF (channels 14-51) frequency bands."
Does anyone have any recommendations for a different antenna? I could put it in my attic, or even a different indoor antenna would work too if that would help get global.
2012-03-21, 09:14 PM
Yep, you should get another antenna.
A 4-bay ($50) or better yet an 8-bay if it fits ($100).
Get a WineGard,ChannelMaster or Antennas Direct because "you get what you pay for".
Attach your rabbit ears to the VHF on the CM7777 and the new antenna to the UHF.
You are going to have to have a stable mount, just holding the antenna is not consistant.
So, an attic mount is what you seem to favor. Get up there with a phone to communicate with someone in front of the TV and find a position for each that yields good reception. You can hang them from hooks and dental floss if you're really cheap. It's better if you do this before May because an attic can be very uncomfortable May thru September!
In my case I have an 8-bay pointed at HC and a 45yr old single bay to CF with the CM7777
2012-03-22, 09:49 AM
dave7718, rabbit ears are typically optimized for VHF (though you can shorten them to work for UHF). That doesn't mean they can't receive UHF, it is just they won't receive it very well. If the signal is strong, any antenna will work (even a paper clip). As you have noticed, the thing about DTV is it is all or nothing in that you either get a perfect picture or none at all. Since weather and foliage will affect reception, using antenna(s) optimized for the channels you want to receive is recommended for reliable reception year round.
Channel 6 is very difficult to receive indoors for a variety of reasons. First of all, it is quite weak (more so for some than others). Secondly it is much more susceptible to impulse noise generated inside your house than higher channel numbers. Moving the antenna outside will not only allow it to receive a stronger signal but will reduce the amount of impulse noise received.
2012-03-23, 06:05 PM
For the past several months my reception of CBOT-DT has been iffy from 4:30pm thru 6:30pm. Yesterday it was fine but today I couldn't hold a signal for more than 3-5secs. All other CF staions are fine(including Global). What is it that could cause interference on this one channel at this specific time of day and only some days? I'm ten floors up and yes there are what appears to be cell transmitters (they're shrouded in fiberglass). Any ideas?
2012-03-24, 10:54 AM
^^^Strange that it affects CBOT but not TVO as they are adjacent. I wonder if it could be some type of inter-modulation interference. Doesn't explain the time of day issue. Can you try and find out what frequencies are used by the cell transmitters near you (I seem to remember seeing an online tool posted in one of the other threads that would help with this). If that is the problem, a low pass filter (before your pre-amp if you have one) might help.
2012-03-24, 11:04 AM
Replying to a post in the OTA: Ontario Parts, Sales, Service, Installers (http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?p=1399501#post1399501) thread.
We spent about 2 hours trying to get an attic setup that received all of the Ottawa channels, but in the end, Global proved to be too much of a problem for me in NW Kanata near Carp. I could get Global and the other Camp Fortune stations with my old FM/VHF/UHF attic antenna, but when adding a second antenna to get the Manotick stations we could never get Global and the Manotick stations regardless of what combiner / amplifier / preamp / FM-trap we tried. Global is just too weak and finicky.
In the end I left just the Winegard 8800 that he installed connected - it's getting everything except global. We'll see if we miss Global, and if so, maybe get a high-gain antenna tuned just for VHF CH-6 added to the mix, or go with an outdoor setup rather than in the attic. I sure wish Global would improve their transmitter or switch to another frequency.
Did you have a pre-amp before? What pre-amp are you using now? If it has separate VHF and UHF inputs, what if you connected your old FM/VHF/UHF antenna to the VHF port and the new 8800 to the UHF one (be sure that the pre-amp is set to use separate inputs)? Alternately, use a UVSJ to combine the two.
2012-03-24, 12:26 PM
I didn't have a pre-amp before; I have a VA-91 (http://www.technicontact.com/ProductImages/wImageLarge/VA-91_big.jpg) amplifier in the basement as the first item after the antenna feed travels through 30 or 40 feet of RG6 from the attic to the basement. Right after the amplifier I split the signal and feed it into 3 HDHomeRun tuners.
We tried using a CM-777? with separate UHF and VHF inputs to combine the signal from the old antenna (aimed at CF) and the new (aimed at HC). It made matters worse - we lost some of the HC channels, perhaps due to interference between the antennas or because the signal was too strong. Oddly, we also lost Global in that configuration regardless of the FM trap settings. We eliminated the splitter / amp / pre-amp, tried different combiners, but were never able to come up with a configuration that got all of the stations with workable signal levels. My old antenna is FM/VHF/UHF, so if the CM-777? doesn't filter out UHF signals from its VHF input then both antennas would have been supplying UHF and that might have been the problem.
I don't have a simple UVSJ - that's about the only thing weren't able to try. If I get a chance to pick one up locally I can fairly easily pop my head through the attic hatch and reconnect things. I suppose some sort of notch filter that only allows CH-6 through might help too since the old antenna is able to bring in Global, and that's really all I need it for now.
2012-03-24, 01:31 PM
^^^The Winegard 8800 is a high gain antenna and having it pointed directly at HC would very likely cause either a CM-7777 or CM-7778 to overload. To be honest, that would not have been my first choice of antenna for you, but I guess it is too late now. I assume you removed (not just unplugged) your VA-91 when using the CM-777x?
When set for separate inputs, UHF is filtered out of the VHF input (and vice-versa), so it won't cause interference. I have a bunch of UVSJs and could give you one for a buck if you want to try it out (PM me).
As for a filter that only allows CH-6 through, the JoinTenna is what you are looking for, but I suspect it won't be any better than a UVSJ for you.
2012-03-25, 02:16 PM
New member, but have been using OTA TV for a few months now. Current set-up is temporary and looking for experience/suggestions to finalize it all.
I’m in Craig Henry, in the Greenbank/Hunt Club area of Nepean.
Currently have a CM4221 on a 16 ft wood pole against the back eave of the one-storey attached garage (house itself is two-storey with hip roof). The antenna feeds about 40 feet of RG59 to a basic 32-inch flat TV. The antenna points a couple of degrees east of south (magnetic), so about 178 degrees.
I’m getting all (I believe) local channels:
4-1 CBOT DT CBC Ottawa
6-1, 6-2, CIII Global
9-1, CBOFT Ottawa
11-1, CHCH DT
13-1, CJOH CTV Ottawa
14-1, OMNI 2
30-1, CIVO DT
40-1, CHOT DT TVA
42-1, CITS DT
43-1, CHRO DT (CTV2) Ottawa
60-1, OMNI 1
with consistently good signals, (TV indicates levels in % -- weakest is ~ 85%). Recently, WPBS (18.1, 18.2 and 18.3) seems to be fairly reliable at night (not during the day), and a few nights back (during the “heat wave”) I had both 28.1 and 28.2 (CBS and Fox) booming in, but not since.
I’m now looking at two basic options to set up the antenna system more permanently; namely, attic or outside on the house.
I temporarily tried the 4221 in the attic during the day and there was no apparent difference vis-à-vis the current location outside. (E.g, none of the U.S. stations was available.) The attic location is about 10 feet higher, but is under a plywood/shingle roof, surrounded by prefab-type wood roof trusses and rafters, and the usual metal roof vents. For this trial I had the TV upstairs near the attic hatch (i.e. with short length of good RG6), but a permanent install would involve 60-75 feet of (new) RG6 to reach the TV on the main floor. I didn’t try the attic location at night, but presume that it would be the same as the antenna on the pole outside.
Notwithstanding the extra cabling involved, the attic would be my preferred location, but it would be nice to get WPBS, or more, during the day as well, if that’s at all likely in my area.
The outside options include chimney mount (not sure if the chimney structure, which is clad in aluminum siding, can support this) or off an upper roof eave using a J-pole. Both would not add any more height than being in the attic. However, they would require more complex wiring for a ground (i.e., not directly down to the ground rod at the base of the wood pole, as it is now), and be susceptible to our fine weather conditions (wind, snow, and especially ice!). On the other hand, either outside location would make it possible to use a better (larger) antenna (such as the CM4228), which cannot be used in the attic due to the small access hatch. But then, would a CM4228, or similar, really make that much of a difference?
Appreciate if anyone in the Craig Henry area can help based on actual experience.
2012-03-27, 10:00 AM
plain om, welcome. Could you please post a link to your TVFool results so that we can better evaluate your situation?
Discussions about a third DHC OTA Members Meet: Kanata and Area are starting in the meeting thread here: http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=146132&page=999
If you are interested in attending a meeting of OTA enthusiats in Ottawa, head over to that forum and join in the discussion!
Please respond only in that thread if you are interested in the event.
2012-03-28, 01:06 PM
plain om, welcome. Could you please post a link to your TVFool results so that we can better evaluate your situation?
Thanks for the reply.
I erred in the antenna compass details in my post above (#873). The antenna is pointing SE, at about 145 degrees magnetic (more or less in line with Herberts Corners and the U.S. sources in the Massena area).
2012-03-28, 03:07 PM
plain om, looking at your TVFool report, I would say your chances of reliably receiving PBS (or anything from the US) is slim without great heroics.
Having metal near your antenna is bad for reception, so if you did a chimney mount, make sure the antenna is several feet above it. To secure it properly use a proper chimney mount (such as a CM-3080 (http://www.channelmaster.com/TV_Antenna_Chimney_Mount_Channel_Master_CM_3080_s/78.htm) or CM-9067 (http://www.channelmaster.com/TV_Antenna_Chimney_Mount_Channel_Master_CM_9067_s/69.htm)) or possibly a wall mount (such as the CM-9025 (http://www.channelmaster.com/TV_Antenna_Wall_Mount_Channel_Master_CM_9025_s/74.htm)) bolted through the siding and cladding and into the framing.
Attics loose about 10 to 20 dB of signal (or more if you have a metal roof or siding) so it would only be good for receiving locals.
If you put it on the upper roof eave, I would use a proper eave mount (such as the CM-9030 (http://www.channelmaster.com/TV_Antenna_Eave_Mount_Channel_Master_CM_9030_s/73.htm)) and not a J-Pole. A larger antenna (such as a CM-4228 or HD-8800) would double the amount of signal received (a 3dB increase) once again increasing your opportunities for receiving PBS, but I can't promise that it will be reliable.
Fortunately Global seems quite strong in your location, so you may be okay as is, but if you have reception problems, it may be necessary to add a VHF antenna (those in Orleans and Kanata/Stittsville are not so lucky). An outdoor antenna will minimize the chance of this being necessary.
2012-03-30, 09:08 PM
Thanks for the comprehensive reply.
I've been thinking of what to do and have sort of decided to stay with the status quo for a little longer. It seems to be doing fine for our interests. I will replace the old RG59 with proper RG6 compression connectors, and see what happens into the summer months.
I might try a 4228 to see if it makes a significant difference, and try the 4221 in different locations, such as temporarily above the chimney. Right now things seem to have improved and we're getting WPBS (18) during the day quite often, and at night consistently.
I was particularly interested in finding out the impact of an attic installation - 10-20 db loss is a high figure, so I'll keep focusing on what to do outside.
The chimney mount is probably the most interesting as it might be the easiest to install, and the antenna could be accessed fairly easily when need be. Also, in my case, it would involve the shortest line of cable to the tv. But I wonder if this type of chimney (wood frame, aluminum siding) can accommodate the strap-type chimney mount due to the strap compression pressures on the aluminum corner trims. The alternative, the wall mounts, are a possibility but I'll have to locate the framing underneath. Any idea/experience about using the strap type in this case?
Great group here. . . .
2012-04-01, 08:37 AM
plain om, thinking more about it, you are right and the strap on type are probably best left for brick chimneys (for which they are the best option).
2012-04-02, 10:07 PM
Not sure how to interpret the data on tvfool, especially when it comes to purchasing the right antenna for the stations I'm hoping for.
I would love to be able to get:
CBC, CTV, Global, Omni 1 and 2, French CBC, TVO, CHRO and City...anything else would be gravy. I currently have a newish indoor antenna that I got on sale to give it a shot. I get 2 french stations, TVO, CBC and CTV, though the last is not reliable, especially when my wife is trying to watch The Voice :rolleyes:
Anyone favour my chances? Thank you in advance.