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Could I use a preamp?

Discussion in 'Local Reception' started by tweaked, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. tweaked

    tweaked AllStar

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    Jul 1, 2008
    I'm going to be installing a Winegard 7698 antenna w/rotor on a 50' mast. I'll have a 95' run of RG6 from the antenna to my receiver. My locals are fairly close-by, right around 27 miles. I realize an amp's not necessary except for the fact that I'd like to pull in fringe UHF (and one VHF) channels from another city via towers that are a ways out (about 85 miles). With my existing antenna, a Winegard 7080P on a 20' mast, I can occasionally pick up several VHF stations when atmospheric conditions are favorable. What I'd like to do is be able to receive UHF channels from those same towers again, as conditions allow. At best, I'm guessing it'll be hit and miss most of the time but still, since I'm going to the trouble of installing a new antenna and mast, I'd like to be able to pull in all the digital channels that I can.

    I've spoken with a tech at Winegard about their HDP269 amplifier, a relatively low gain unit which should work fine for me being I'm not too far from my local broadcast towers.

    Question is, would an amp installed on a <100 foot continuous run of cable (no splitter) be of any benefit, particularly with respect to the distant UHF signals I'd like to receive? Keep in mind, it would be in series with a fairly high gain antenna.

    Thanks!
     
  2. EXTACAMO

    EXTACAMO Godfather

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    Apr 6, 2007
    With 100' of cable I would think a pre-amp would be a necessity. And yes the Winegard HDP-269 is a good choice. It was recommended to me and I've been very happy with it.
     
  3. Kansas Zephyr

    Kansas Zephyr Hall Of Fame

    1,489
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    Jun 29, 2007
    You may wish to look at the Channel Master 7777, too.
     
  4. ziggy29

    ziggy29 Icon

    691
    2
    Nov 18, 2004
    San Antonio DMA
    The HDP-269 would be the right choice if you have any really close and strong broadcast signals coming in. Most pre-amps would overload in that situation, but the HDP-269 is much more tolerant of strong nearby signals. I have one close signal and a lot of distant ones, and the HDP-269 is the only one that didn't overload on the nearby signal and still increased the strength of distant signals.

    If you don't have any close, overwhelming signals I'd consider something stronger like a CM 7777. BUT -- that one will overload on any strong and close signals. If you are within 10-15 miles of the tower and the TVFool info shows a strength of -50 dBm or stronger for the closest and strongest signals, you probably want the HDP-269.

    IMO, the CM 7777 is usually the best bet if you don't have to worry about overloading, and the HDP-269 is best if you do. There are exceptions, of course, but more often than not this seems to be the conventional wisdom.
     
  5. tweaked

    tweaked AllStar

    95
    0
    Jul 1, 2008
    I have gone ahead and ordered the preamp. That said, it was pointed out to me that I may regret its installation due to the amount of noise and gain that's piped in. I've got roughly 18 digital locals broadcasting from less than 30 miles out. It was suggested to me that using an amp, even a low gain unit like the HDP269, would be fraught with signal interference and gain issues, making it difficult to receive the distant, fringe signals I'd like to pull in.

    What I do not want to do is mount the unit on what will be a newly installed (and guy'ed) 50', roof mounted mast only to take it down should reception difficulties arise. Being the Winegard 7698 antenna I'll be installing is fairly high gain and my cable run will be short and absent any splitters, an amp of any sort might not aid in receiving those distant signals.

    I've got until the weekend to 'sleep on it'. Thanks for the helpful replies!!:)
     
  6. n3ntj

    n3ntj Hall Of Fame

    5,759
    11
    Dec 18, 2006
    Lancaster,...
    Let us know how this works for you. A good high gain pre-amp, good coax, and a good antenna should help.
     
  7. EXTACAMO

    EXTACAMO Godfather

    316
    0
    Apr 6, 2007
    I understand your concern. In my situation I have 3 major network towers less then 15mi. from my house and the other CBS about 50mi. away. My antenna a 43XG and the HDP-269 are mounted about 35' up. This rig works really well for me. the only thing is my cable run is much shorter then yours. Good luck. I hope it works out.
     

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