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I'm new to OTA...using an Antennas Direct DB8e and a Channel Master DVR+ Victoria. Very little local, only CityTV and CTV2 repeaters. Everything else has to come from Vancouver or Seattle. So over 100km either way.

I picked up a used Motorola BDA-K1-RA Broadband Drop Amp, and signal strength as reported by the DVR+ is up as expected, but "signal quality" whatever that means, drops by a similar amount. Does an amp typically increase strength while harming quality? Jury's out on visuals so far...early days. I was hoping the amp might reduce occasional video glitches and audio dropouts.

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29&q=id=9038e09fca0815

https://www.usedvictoria.com/classi...ier--one--port--WITH-POWERSUPPLYUSED_31505049
 

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The Motorola BDA-K1/RA is designed for use with cable systems, not OTA. An outdoor OTA amp designed for OTA use and mounted on or near the antenna will usually provide the best results. It will typically increase signal strength but leave signal quality about the same. It will help where there is signal loss due to cable length and splitters. There are cases where any amp will make signal quality worse. One common scenario is when strong local TV and FM signals cause harmonic distortion and interference on frequencies used by weak signals.
 

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SOME Cable Drop Amps CAN be used for OTA, but the Motorola BDA-K1-RA isn't in the same class as, for example the excellent CM-3410 and CM-341x Series. Motorola DropAmp has mediocre Noise Figure Specs (3 dB "nominal", 5.5 dB max) and unlike most other DropAmps, has 11 db Gain in 5-45 MHz Band in the REVERSE Direction, so that RFI/EMI generated in the connected systems will be AMPLIFIED before being radiated out the OTA Antenna....so it is NOT a good choice for OTA Antenna:
http://www.signalboosterstore.com/Info/Motorola_BDA_Installation_Manual.pdf

I'm much more concerned re OVERLOAD....but until TVFool comes back on-line I can't form an opinion.

Perhaps the OP can go to fol. Website, enter Address incl. Zipcode, CHECK the SIGNAL STRENGTH Box and Click on SEARCH....then Copy/Paste the RESULTS URL (Web Address at Top of Web Browser) into a Post so we can see it:
https://www.rabbitears.info/search.php
 

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then Copy/Paste the RESULTS URL (Web Address at Top of Web Browser) into a Post so we can see it:
Uh, that URL contains the precise location information from the geocoding results as well as the full street address. It isn't masked for privacy.

If you want a semi-private copy of the results, you'd have to snip an image of the resulting report and then attach or insert that image into a post here.
 

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Thanks for the feedback...I can't see a way to get the rabbitears site to accept a Canadian address. Clearly, I should have done some research on the Motorola before I bought it. Well, at least it was cheap. :)
 

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You COULD simply give us some [not necessarily ACCURATE] location info, [such as LAT/LONG rounded to two or three decimal points....or Deg:Min accurate to about 1-mi] or Canadian Post Code and City Name plus nearby Cross Streets, which we can then use with GoogleEarth and Tower Icons previously downloaded from TVFool to get an idea of what you're up against.....

FYI: My earlier post re the SAD state of affairs re alternatives to TVFool (other than US ONLY RabbitEars). I don't know whether any of them accept Canadian Address....and Results are of only minimal interest anyway:
https://www.avsforum.com/forum/25-hdtv-technical/2777289-tvfool-down.html#post51404545
 

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TVFool is up now, but I don't know for how long; his link worked:
TV Fool

and here is the image in case the link doesn't work:

 

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I get the correct results with that link...V8P5K7 near Cedar Hill rec Centre.

TV Fool
Those results are definitely not where Google says your postal code is at. They're from 3 miles north and behind Mt Douglas.

Use the interactive maps tool and pinpoint your address to generate a new report and see if it's different. Geocoding of street addresses sometimes yields unpredictable results.
 

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Very little local, only CityTV and CTV2 repeaters.
I picked up a used Motorola BDA-K1-RA Broadband Drop Amp, and signal strength as reported by the DVR+ is up as expected, but "signal quality" whatever that means, drops by a similar amount. Does an amp typically increase strength while harming quality?
It can, if used in the wrong application.
How close to the repeater transmitters are you? Possible that when you installed the preamp, it became overloaded by strong local repeaters, causing distortion.
eg what you saw as degraded signal "quality".

Are you using your antenna with the Bays in the same direction? Or are you having them in different directions? eg one towards Vancouver, one towards US/Seattle transmitters?

Whatever, if ur having trouble with whatever ur doing, try the other way.
If your intent on using an amplifier, you may need to isolate your antenna from the local repeaters as much as possible.
 

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I get the correct results with that link...V8P5K7 near Cedar Hill rec Centre.

TV Fool
That is not the correct report for your location. Here are two reports based on the coordinates of my guess, which should be close to you since you already put Ocean View in your report
1444 Ocean View Rd
Victoria, BC V8P 5K7

TV Fool



 

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Those results are definitely not where Google says your postal code is at. They're from 3 miles north and behind Mt Douglas.

Use the interactive maps tool and pinpoint your address to generate a new report and see if it's different. Geocoding of street addresses sometimes yields unpredictable results.
You're right, I don't know where I got that link in 4332. My original link at the top of the page in post 4321 gives the same report I get by searching a new report with my postal code. Sorry, not very tech savvy over here.
 

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It can, if used in the wrong application.
How close to the repeater transmitters are you? Possible that when you installed the preamp, it became overloaded by strong local repeaters, causing distortion.
eg what you saw as degraded signal "quality".

Are you using your antenna with the Bays in the same direction? Or are you having them in different directions? eg one towards Vancouver, one towards US/Seattle transmitters?

Whatever, if ur having trouble with whatever ur doing, try the other way.
If your intent on using an amplifier, you may need to isolate your antenna from the local repeaters as much as possible.
I'm very close to the repeaters...I can see them out the window, and they are almost directly to the south of my north facing antenna. I would guess 2 km. My antenna is aimed directly at the Vancouver transmitters. I tried half to Vancouver and half to Seattle, but the results were not great. Aimed at Vancouver, I get pretty good results which I can live with. I was just playing around with the signal amp to experiment, really. I have a 25 foot coax from my antenna to a grounding block, and then 6 feet into my DVR+. No splitters and a short run, so I don't think an amp is likely of any value. I've just ordered a Tivo, and will be interested to see how it compares with my DVR+.
 

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A better (higher gain) antenna or more antenna height is almost always preferable to a preamp. Another solution is to have two or more antennas facing in different directions with each feeding it's own tuner. That could be separate tuners in a PVR or two or more PVRs.
 

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Where to buy a CM7778

My 5 year old CM7778 just died and I can't find a replacement CM preamp anywhere without paying 5 times what I did for this one.

Any suggestions?
 

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April Fain, I'm in the same boat.

Online, the Channel Master store is out of stock on their new pro model. So I've requested an email notification whenever they get stock.

On the upside, the new CM 7778 has had great reviews.
 
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