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KOMO in North Vancouver??

My TV fool report is http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id=2c15e5e8d4062b.

I'm not far from Grouse Mt with line of sight east to Seymour and south to the USA. My $25 antenna from Amazon keeps teasing me with KOMO but it's not reliable. I then got a Televes DAT75 with a 12db preamp but that made no difference.

Then I discovered the antenna chart on this forum :)

Before I try something like the Antennas Direct DB8E I'm wondering if anyone else on the North Shore can get KOMO reliably and if so what antenna do you use?

On a related note, almost all stations are either to my east or south. I notice the elements on the DB8E can be rotated. Can I pivot one side east and the other south or must everything point south?

Thanks in advance for any advice.

Kind Regards
 

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Your TVFool report shows that with some good effort you might be able to get KOMO, but signals rated 1EDGE require a real commitment in OTA gear. Are you in a highrise or high up on a hill?

Televes makes good quality gear but a DAT75 is not the answer for what you want, as you found out. I won't put Televes products on the Antenna Chart owing of their too-high pricing.

Definitely don't pivot the individual bays of any 8-bay antenna away from a common direction. The following thread tells you all about the pitfalls of what might seem like a logical idea: 8-Bay UHF Clones That Fold / Bifurcate


 

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Many thanks for the information Stampeder. Yes, I am on a hill... 105m ASL according to Google Earth. Ironically tonight both KOMO (ABC) [4.1] and KIRO (CBS) [7.1] are rock solid, but CKVU (City) [10.1] is pixelated!

While getting KOMO and KIRO is nice, my primary goal is to get the Canadian stations all rock solid... CHEK [6.1] and CKVU (City) [10.1] misbehave... everything else is perfect.

I asked about changing the direction of the bays on the DB8e because I noticed they are adjustable... but on the DB8 they are rigid. Am I better off saving $50 and getting the DB8 instead of the DB8e?

Alternatively, given my TV Fool report, is there one single antenna that will let me get Canadian and US stations or should I use the DB8(e) pointed south for USA and a second antenna pointed East for Canadian channels (and CHEK off the back on the west)? What would you recommend for the latter?

Is there an Antennas Direct retailer in the Lower Mainland? I'd rather support local business instead of Amazon!

Kind Regards and thanks in advance.
 

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Being up that high is good for the strongest SeaTac stations. Bellingham and Victoria will be easy. As for suppliers, check out this link as I'm pretty sure Greg in Aldergrove is still servicing our area:

OTA: BC & Western Canada Parts, Sales, Service, Installers

Do you have actual line of sight to the Mt. Seymour antenna farms? If not, you might be getting the dreaded "mountain effect" that other people in certain areas of North Van have decried.

As for DB8 versus DB8e, the OTA pros I've discussed that topic with over the past year or so are almost all agreed on the DB8e for all around use. Regarding channels 13 and 11, if you really want them you'll need a dedicated VHF-HI antenna (see the Antenna Chart). 13 is a blowtorch so should be fine with such a proper antenna, but 11 might be a bit tricky, and if you get channel 9 I'd be delighted for you.
 

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The dreaded "mountain effect" of North Vancouver (to receive Seymour) has been beaten not too far from Edgemont. There, you are relatively close to some high power transmitters but they not in the line of sight. It is a combination multiple edge and clutter shot. You start with a serious antenna such as an 8-bay or a corner-reflector yagi, low noise preamp, and a good length of coax. The edges (of the surface of the ground) deflect the horizontal polarization into some other angle; thus you rotate the axis of the antenna to optimize the signal bars - this might take 10 to 45 degrees. A further effect from clutter (trees, houses, lamp-posts, ...) may create positions with good signal strength separated by positions of poor signal strength -- you have to "walk" around to look for a good spot. That good spot can vary with height above the ground.
 

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Thanks westsider and stampeder. Sorry for the delay in replying. I had wait for the Pineapple Express to pass before getting onto the roof to confirm that there is indeed a ridge between Mt. Seymour and me.

I'll get a DB8e and experiment.

Kind Regards
 

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Got a DB8e over the weekend, installed on the roof, but got mixed results. One bay of 4 is pointing due south for USA stations, the other bay of 4 is pointing due east for most Canadian stations with CHEK off the back to the west. This is connected to a RCA 12dB gain masthead preamp.

All Canadian stations are rock solid 70+ signal strength including City which was very troublesome for me. I'm very happy with this.

Following this I had high hopes for the US stations and while the Bellingham stations are ok, KOMO and KIRO are totally dead. KIRO signal is <30 with KOMO a flat 0! Even my previous pizza sized $25 Chinese antenna from Amazon got something from KIRO and KOMO. Still, rock solid Canadian stations was the primary goal.

On a related note, I used tvfool.com to find the locations of KIRO, KOMO and KING to confirm I was pointed in the exact direction and was shocked to discover that all 3 transmitters are located in a residential area and all 3 are within 2-3 blocks of each other!! (you can see all 3 towers at https://www.google.ca/maps/@47.6324392,-122.3538647,380m/data=!3m1!1e3 Using the ruler in Google Earth I also discovered that it's a perfect straight line between KIRO/KOMO/KING in Seattle, KVOS in Bellingham and me on the North Shore.

However, any idea why I have *never* been able to get KING with any antenna? KIRO is 1000kW, KOMO is 500kW and I've received both of these at some point. KING in 960kW and in the same location but never received any signal??

Thanks for helping me get all Canadian stations rock solid.
 

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Captain Semtex I think you may not have gotten the point I was making that those antennas, when the sets of 4-bays are pointed independently, are actually not very good. As Jaygeetee suggests, your results will be quite different with all the bays pulling as one team rather than against each other.
 

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So near... yet so far!

I owe this very helpful group an update on my exploits. As a reminder, my location in North Vancouver forms an almost perfect right angle triangle with Canadian stations transmitting from Mt Seymour in the East and the US stations in Bellingham and Seattle transmitting from the South.

I had a couple of false starts with cheap antennas... nevertheless they teased me with heavily pixelated signals from KIRO (CBS) and KOMO (ABC) in Seattle... but were also problematic with CKVU (City).

In my last post a mentioned that I now have a DB8e with 4 bays pointing South and 4 bays pointing East. While all Canadian stations were rock solid with Tivo showing 70+ signal strength (out of 100), KOMO and KIRO were totally dead... 0 signal.

I used TV Fool to find the exact locations on KIRO and KOMO and use the ruler feature in Google Earth to draw a line direct to my antenna. The line passed directly through a cluster of tall trees immediately across the street... but by moving the antenna 30 feet to the opposite side of the roof I then had clear line of sight. So I did that... and I also pointed all 8 bays south.

OMG! KIRO and KOMO both 70+ signal strength! That's just as strong as the Canadian channel, but these stations are ~200km away! But wait... KING (NBC) was very good at 50+ signal strength and I even got KONG, which was occasionally pixelated. There were also a bunch of other stations, but none that I would watch. Alas, KSTW (CW) could not be received.

So this is great... but this configuration rendered many Canadian stations borderline. No problem a figured... I will use the DB8e South for the US stations and my pizza sized Chinese antenna East for the Canadian channel... and I will use a combiner to merge the signals into one...

...but as soon as I combine the two signals most of the US stations disappear!

Any ideas what I'm doing wrong? Both antennas have their own powered preamps (ie 12V is injected into the coax) and both have separate cable runs. The signals are combined inside the house.

It would be great to have my cake and eat it!!

Thanks in advance for any advice.
 

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I have a long overdue update and a working solution... thanks in most part to Greg Gilmour of Satellite Central Communications in Aldergrove. He correctly identified the problem was the preamps.

To summarise my problem, I use a DB8e pointing South for US stations plus CHEK and a pizza sized Chinese antenna pointing East for all other Canadian channels. I need to use a masthead preamp with the DB8e and the Chinese antenna has a built in preamp. Both antennas have separate cable runs and both cables have 12V injected to power the preamps. The signals are combined inside the house with a combiner to merge the signals into one...

...but as soon as I combine the two signals most of the US stations disappear!

Greg correctly identified the problem was having 2 preamps and I should just have one.
The solution was to replace the Chinese antenna with an Antenna Direct ClearStream 1 antenna. The Antenna Direct DB8e has two bays with a 2-way combiner. This was replaced with a 3-way combiner... one signal from each bay plus the signal from the ClearStream 1. The output is then fed into a masthead preamp which then goes to the house and is distributed throughout.

The result is 100% rock solid signal from all Canadian stations and all Bellingham stations plus good signals from KIRO and KOMO in Seattle. KING and KONG are variable, but I'm doing a final tweak on positioning the antenna tomorrow.

@levibluewa - Yes, I can get Laff TV too! Thanks for the tip... and TiVo already added it to my channel list :)

Alas no KSTW (The CW) and no KCPQ (Fox)... the power output from these stations isn't strong enough to reach me with my equipment.

Regards
 

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Alas no KSTW (The CW) and no KCPQ (Fox)... the power output from these stations isn't strong enough to reach me with my equipment.
You'll need a good VHF antenna to get KCTS-9,KSTW-11 and KCPQ-13...I don't think your DB8e is up for that.
 

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Doh! Revisited my TV Fool report and now I understand the difference between Real channel numbers and virtual channel number :)

Thank you.

BTW, the DB8e is UHF only so if I want those channels then I will need a separate VHF antenna. Oh well.
 

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Can someone tune into 32.1 (ctv) and let me know if you get any ticking sounds on this channel every 15-20 seconds? I've tried 2 different antennas and 2 tvs. Only this chan has this issue (2.1, 17.1, 8.1, etc are fine).
 
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