I spent at least 8 hours researching this and can't find a conclusive answer.
TV Fool results: TV Fool
CBET (9.1) is 17 miles from my house (I'm in the Detroit Area) and is in the "green" zone on the antenna maps. It's closer to me than any other tower. About 85% of the time, I have no issues with it but then sporadically I get a "no signal" or pixelated performance. I get about 60 digital channels with no issues (with rare exceptions) at all but the one closest to me which is one of my favorite channels causes me headaches.
- I have a Channel Master EXTREMEtenna 80 (or a prior model of this if one exists; it's about 10 yrs old and I can't remember the exact model but it looks the same.)
- It's installed on the roof with no trees or obstructions anywhere nearby.
- The one potential issue is my coaxial cable is about 100 feet, however, that doesn't seem to pose a problem for the other 60 channels I receive clearly.
- I tried using a cheap RCA amplifier 2 days ago but it didn't help at all.
- In the past, I've noticed it sometimes is worse in the evening and it *seems* (I haven't actively tracked it) like I've had the issues more in the winter months but not necessarily when there's bad weather vs good weather.
- I checked the coaxial cable and it appears to be in good shape with no corrosion at the connection. The antenna appears to be in good condition as well.
- I've made sure no LED lights or other equipment were on that might affect performance.
I first noticed the signal went out about 1-2 weeks ago but wasn't on top of it until I wanted to record a Workin Moms marathon on Tues night. All my efforts to get it working failed. (Note: the signal is a problem with and without my recording device <Channel Master Stream+> connected.)
Wed (yesterday), I noticed it was coming in almost totally clearly but had some pixelation. This in spite of dropping temps and some wind throughout the day.
Today, signal totally out again. Weather, while colder, has been fairly calm with no precipitation the past several days.
I submitted a "ticket" with CBET but their disclaimer said they can't respond to all requests. I was hoping they could shed some light on if they adjust the power at the station (something I read in my research.) That might explain why I've noticed issues in the evening or maybe even why it's fine 85% of the time and then suddenly isn't coming in at all. Does anyone here have any insight on that question?
I feel like the only options I have left are either a preamplifier or an amplifier; the research seems to suggest both depending on who it is. However, both options can actually make my situation worse which I think is very possible since the other 60 channels come in really well. It's only 9.1 that I'm fighting for! And I wouldn't know what "gain" to buy since too little or too much can both produce poor results. This could become very expensive very quickly and without any guarantees.
Desperate to resolve this soon...there's another Workin Moms marathon next Tuesday! And so much other good programming I'm missing out on.