I live at 3rd Line and Upper Middle Road in Oakville. I don't subscribe to cable or satellite so OTA reception is important to me.
Up until recently I was using a Radio Shack 15-1880 antenna and Samsung SIR-T451 HD receiver (bought at Circuit City in Amherst, NY) with pretty good results. However, I wanted better reception with fewer dropouts so I bit the bullet and bought the following equipment:
- Channel Master 4221 antenna (www.sensuz.com
, approx $60 w/shipping)
- Winegard AP 4700 preamp (purchased via PayPal from Rich Wertman, a dealer in Buffalo NY, approx $65 w/shipping)
I went with an attic installation because my wife didn't want an antenna on our rooftop and I didn't feel comfortable about working on the roof.
None of this is groundbreaking stuff - I basically copied what worked for other people who have reported results on this site (thanks everyone).
Here's what I did:
- attached a piece of 1" PVC conduit (cut to length) to a joist in the attic.
- attached the antenna and the preamp to the PVC conduit.
- ran a 3' RG6 cable from the antenna to the "ant. input" jack on the preamp.
- ran a 12' RG6 cable from the "to power supply" jack on the preamp, connecting it to an approx. 35' RG6 cable that runs from an upstairs bedroom to the basement. The 35' RG6 was installed by a previous owner. I had to drill a hole in the ceiling of the bedroom closet so I could attach the 12' RG6 and the 35' RG6.
- where the 35' RG6 run ends in the basement, I installed the preamp's power supply.
- from the power supply, I ran 50' of RG6 to the SIR-T451 in the family room.
- positioned the antenna for optimal reception of both Toronto and Buffalo stations. I took my wife's cell phone into the attic and called her on the land line. She sat in front of the TV and reported on the signal strength of the stations while I moved the antenna. I could have used a compass but the trial and error method seems to have worked for us.
Here are the reception results, as of tonight (not including weather channels, duplicate channels, etc):
2-1 NBC 10 bars
4-1 CBS 10 bars
5-1 CBC 10 bars
7-1 ABC 10 bars
9-1 CTV 10 bars
23-1 The CW 10 bars
25-1 CBC(F) 7 bars
29-1 FOX 9 bars
43-1 PBS 10 bars
49-1 My TV 4-5 bars (frequent dropouts)
57-1 CITY 7 bars
My wife and I are very happy with the results. Thanks to everyone for all of the tips.