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NE of Parry Sound, ON

Which antenna do the pro's sugeest for my application - CM4228 or a CM3671? I'm going to convert from FTA to OTA at the cottage for obvious reason. The cottage is 45 Km N/E of Parry Sound. I've gone to TVFool and found out there are 6 DVT transmitters / stations in the area (CBC, CTV, A channel, TVO, Global & CHCH). The closest is 40 mi or 60km. Other stations from Barrie (over 100 Km away) are also possible. I've read the 2009 version of the Decision Chart for OTA Antennas in Canada but also did some reading at HD TV primer. There's about $100 difference between the 2 units. Is it worth spending $100 more for the CM3671? I plan on installing the antenna on a 30 foot tower with a pre-amp & rotor. Thanks in advance for your advise - I've been reading for 3 days now.
 

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If I were in your position, I's go with the CM3671 and a rotor. If you're located on high ground a 30 ft tower will work, but if you're in a wooded area, you'll need to go higher than the treeline.. Its a combination VHF UHF and thats what you need for the stations you listed.
Those stations aren't likely to go digital till aug 31, 2011
Yes, they have licenses and channels assigned, but transmit only analog for now.
 

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Those stations aren't likely to go digital till aug 31, 2011
And only the Barrie and Muskoka ones will be required to stay on the air (in digital) after 2011. North Bay, Parry Sound, and Huntsville can shut down OTA broadcasts altogether in 2011 if they want, AFAIK. I'm not sure where the boundary of the Toronto-Hamilton-Barrie market ends. Only London, Toronto, Kitchener, and Ottawa are required by the CRTC to convert to digital in 2011. Everyone else in Ontario can just shut down OTA, and rely on BDU carriiage if they want to.

Not sure if it's going to pan out that way, though....
 

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I thought some stations in cottage country were already transmitting DTV signals. For example, I went to the web site "xx.user.dccnet.com/jonleblanc/Canada_TV_Stations/ON.html"
It list serval DTV stations in Huntville, Barrie , North Bay & Sudbury, such as:
ON Huntsville OP 13 CICA-TV-13 TVO 451546 792145 181.7 31900 210.00 Z . Are these stations actually broadcasting DTV signals?
 

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Kincade, the http://www.user.dccnet.com/jonleblanc/Canada_TV_Stations/ site lists all OTA stations in Canada, not just digital stations. You can see a link on the main page of that site to a list of all currently operational digital stations in Canada. :)

The stations that are or will be broadcasting in digital have -DT in their call letters. If a station's listing shows OP and -DT then it is operational in digital.

The example you gave of the Huntsville TVO station shows that it is analogue because the station's name is not CICA-DT-13.
 

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Thanks Stampeder. I was set to invest in some new gear but there's no point just yet because all available channels are analog in the VHF band. I'm already getting everthing that's available.
 

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North end of Lake Simcoe

I just got an Antenna Dirtect DB8 because its the recommended uhf antenna vs the new channel master 4228HD (according to stampeders recommended antenna list).

Examining the contents I noticed .... the back reflector screens are a bit parabolic in shape. I was expecting them to be perfectly flat. It maybe from the packaging, as the whole thing came tightly tie strapped together in the shipping box. The screens are pretty much a match but they are curved along a line parallel to the aluminum support rail they are attached to.... ie they are not perfectly flat but have an arc... the 2 sides that are parrallel to the support rail are about 3/8" closer to the bowties with the part of the screen attached to the support rail being 3/8" farther from the bowties.... all in a fairly smooth arc from side to side. I don't know if its designed to have a slight arc on the screens or if they were design to be flat and the shipping tie straps put an arc on them.

It appears the bowtie rods are almost parallel to the screen ... they are not perfectly flat either but are bent almost to match the arc of the reflector screens... they measure about 4" from the reflector along the bow tie lenght.

The question is should I attempt to flatten the reflector screens so they are perfectly flat (they are light enough gauge that It can be flattened) and also bend the bow ties to match so the bow ties remain the same distance from the reflector screen... or are they designed to be arched.... I'm ask this because after reading about how to make a gray-hoverman.. they build the bowties and reflector screen (or rods) to be flat and parallel to each other and accuracy, identical/matched construction and attention to detail improves the antenna's performance.

Any thoughts... leave they arced or flatten them. Has any one else flatten them?

I'm at the north end of lake simcoe (barnstable bay) and have a great open view due south down the lake towards Toronto and would like to pull in toronto and attempt even Buffalow.... if the weather will help with the DXing. I know Buffalow is a long shot and most likely just a dream.

I'm starting with the DB8 but most likely will have to add a channel master 7777 pre amp.

Thanks MoreHp
 

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The curving of the reflector and the bowties is ok. Doing so gives a bit more directionality to the antenna, and I think a boost to the gain,too. I'm in the middle of building a Mclapp 4 bay DIY, and the plans show the same bends for the reflector and the bowties. Spacing for UHF between elements and reflector is normally 4-5.5 inches.

Hope this helps--
 

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Try your single DB8 first with the preamp. As suggested, dont flatten out the reflectors or bows (it could cause you more problems).

Try for Buffalo with single DB8,and see what you get. If its a no go,you could always stack 2 of them and see how you make out. As always with OTA, there is a LOT of trial and error to be done to find out the right combination that works best at your particular location.

Also go to tvfool and plug in your coordinates and post your results here so we can have a look at them to see what your up against.

Cheers

Bob
 

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Thanks for the input guys. Will try the install with the reflectors slightly curved.

the tv fool listing shows....

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id=aeadf9ded390a6


since I'm right on the lake I'll start with just a roof top mount... which will put it about 45 feet above the lake. I'll measure it after its installed. but a 60' or 70' tower might help (which will be more like 70-80' above the lake).

But first things first and testing to see what can be pulled in.

MoreHp
 

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Near Haliburton (orillia)

Guys, I am new to this OTA stuff, so I have read through all of the threads I could before starting to tune out as it was starting to get over my head.

My situation is as follows. We have a cottage up near Haliburton (orillia) and there was a tower outdoor antenna there when we bought the place. It did receive some (4) channels or so..very fuzzy but we got some. It rotates..and had a device to move it around. Also there was a bunch of things in the shed that are antenna related but we have no idea what there are..amplifiers..maybe?

Anyway question to you guys can i use the tower antenna to get OTA HD? And if so, do I have to change anything or get anything in paticular? Do I have to change the cabling from the tower into the house to new cabling, or will it be as simple as getting a tv that has a HD tuner in it and connecting it to the tower cable and away we go?

Also did a search in the channel list and I couldn't come up with a search for orillia and area..so I am not sure if I can even receive any channels up there?

Sorry for the questions..but one more..I assume it's hard to find a tv with a built in HD tuner in it...so what should I get as an external..that is good and cheapest?

thanks,

Michael
 

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Hi superwell and welcome here. Could you post some photos of the antenna and gear, or are you back at home now? Here's what you can do for us:
  1. read through this thread
  2. post your TVFool results here (Post #10 in the OTA FAQ has step-by-step instructions)
  3. verify the TVFool results against the the Industry Canada database to make sure you have the newest data
With that info we can be of more help.

ATSC tuners are commonplace in any new HDTV. If you are looking to buy a new HDTV it is still good to check that it has one, though, since you might find the occasional one that doesn't.
 

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Barrie / Innisfil border

I picked up a CM4228HD antenna and have a CM7777 pre-amp. I am able to get buffalo / rochester stations, but not consistantly. Of course the evening is much better and clearer. Last Friday evening I managed to pull in 21 digital channels and 18 analog channels. I'm going to pick up another CM4228HD antenna and mount them facing the same direction. Hopefully I'll be able to pick up more consistantly. I'm about 20feet in the air, and believe to be on higher ground in my area. The last case scenario if the 2 CM4228HD don't pull in the buffalo channels more consistantly was to modify both CM4228HD with the double balun / split.
I picked up my 1st CM4228HD at Sal's TV, and went back to get another one, but he is closed from Aug 4th - Aug 17th.. I'll have to take a trip out to SAVEANDREPLAY and pick up another CM4228HD.

I wonder if I would of been better picking up 4 CM4221's and putting those together..

TVFool results
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id=7d49539aa93606
 

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It's a close call. If you can pick up all TO stations with the single 4228HD, you might want to get a second one to stack. The BUF channels are not on high UHF, which the 4228HD is a terrible performer on. Having the stack should improve gain and stability. Don't forget the procedures for doing the stack- exact same direction and exact same cable lengths going into reverse splitter; keep cable lengths short- about 5 feet, attach pre-amp after antennas joined. Do the simple hack- remove the black clip covers off the bow-ties. Good Luck!! :cool:
 

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sault ste. marie area

hi there, just thought i'd update my situation.

I finally got around to checking to see if i could pick up the u.s. channels, with the channel master 4228. so far so good. I could probably use an amp, since my signals are...

73% or 74% for ABC 8.1 and NBC 8.2, 76% for CBS 10.1 and 74% for Fox 10.2. (is there a reason for the channels being like this? it's not that important to know, just curious)

on occasion ABC and NBC will cut out, like losing a satellite signal.

it's nice to now get NBC and Fox, perfect for the upcoming NFL season.

what i find odd is that i can barely pick up some of the Canadian signals, in particular CH and the TVO channels, which are all in the U.H.F. range the signal is terrible actually. CTV and CBC are ok, considering the antenna.

well, it's nice to actually see hd on my tv! Now the next big wait will be, either high speed internet, or, the digital switch for rural Canada. :cool:

hope this is of some help
 

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Georgian Bay (Honey Harbour)

hey guys...I read through the entire 14 pages but most of it is over my head...I'm simply looking for a solid antenna solution for the cottage...as it stands right now we're only pulling in a Global channel which is quite clear, and a CBC channel that is quite snow-storm like....

Here are my TV Fool results:

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id%3d7d4939c5002164

I would love to pull in all channels possible, but #1 would be clear reception for Hockey Night in Canada in the fall...currently we have a 5 year old analog set...would definitely spend some money to go to an hdtv if it was at all possible to grab some digital channels OTA in my cottage area too

any suggestions/solutions would be very much appreciated...I would love to hear some hardware recommendations...if it is worth investing in some OTA digital gear now (eg to pick up CBC-HD for example), please let me know

the simpler the better for me....what about something like this on our roof? we used to have Bell Expressvu but it proved too costly...the coax is pre-installed from that old box, and was thinking about grabbing this Terk antenna and simply connecting the old coax to it...

http://www.audiovox.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10001&storeId=10001&productId=14126&langId=-1

Apologies in advance for my naivety on this subject! :D

cheers
 

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Honey Habour OTA

I'm a newbie to OTA, and since I've bought my CM4228HD and pointed it towards the CNTower, I can get CBC in HD no problems on channel 5.1.
Avoid the terk antenna. Check the antenna chart, thats what I did before I bought my antenna. I wanted to find the CM4228 original, but they have since been replaced with the CM4228HD, there are some mods that can be done and there is also the DB8 which is available at saveandreplay.
You should definately get a better TV with ATSC tuner, or pick up a ATSC tuner for digital TV. I'm going to pick up a 2nd CM4228HD tonight and take it up north and try the two together to see if I can get more stability on the US digital channels, and some of the other higher numbered Toronto channels.
I'll post my results next week.

Call them at saveandreplay, they're great to talk with and will give you some great advice. I know there is alot of information to go through on these forums and it can take forever to read all these threads, but the guys here have really done their homework and if you try other things and products and want to know whats wrong, then they can only say "told you so".
Good luck
 

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jharcnc, that little antenna from Terk is actually a rebranded Winegard Square Shooter, and it will be fine for the local UHF stations only, and probably since you're so close to Global's tower you'll likely get channel 7 (VHF-HI) too.

Good that Chiporn is nearby! :)
 

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Alliston, ON

Hi There, I couple of weeks ago a was given a multi star 4 bay antenna. To my surprise I can get all the Toronto HD and I am even getting Buffalo HD. The Toronto was pretty strong and Buffalo varied but works best in the evening.

What is the main difference with the DB8 HDTV Antenna vs the CM-4228HD? Is DB8 worth the extra $40 more than the 4228HD?

Now that I know I can receive Buffalo I want to get a better antenna to hopefully increase the strength of signal. I live in Alliston Ontario an Buffalo is 120 miles away.

Here is TVFool results http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id=23c5bd4d10b015
 
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