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OTA Signal Meter

Discussion in 'Local Reception' started by kevinturcotte, Jun 29, 2010.

  1. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

    3,954
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    Dec 19, 2006
    Outside...
    Isn't there some sort of meter that helps with aiming OTA antennas (So I don't have to keep running back and forth between the antenna and inside to the Tv)? It should show the real channel number, and ideally the virtual channel number. Also, what's considered acceptable for signal strength (x is too low, y is too much)?
     
  2. sigma1914

    sigma1914 DIRECTV A-Team DBSTalk Club

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    Sep 5, 2006
    Allen, TX
    Doesn't almost every HDTV have one?
     
  3. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

    3,954
    1
    Dec 19, 2006
    Outside...
    Yes, but it's a little difficult to drag my 47" Tv outside to the antenna lol Plus that just has a very basic "Bad" "Good" "Best" meter with no numbers or anything.
     
  4. sigma1914

    sigma1914 DIRECTV A-Team DBSTalk Club

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    Sep 5, 2006
    Allen, TX
  5. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Leapin' Lizard Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Jan 7, 2005
    Kittrell, NC
    Although aggravating... you also kind of need to get down from the roof to accurately test the signal strength, because you being in close proximity to the antenna will interfere with OTA reception. This interference can result in higher or lower than what the levels will be once you are down from the roof.

    Ideally you need some kind of remote way to monitor the signal level at the TV from outside, but still you get down from the roof and check from the ground.
     
  6. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

    3,954
    1
    Dec 19, 2006
    Outside...
    Could be difficult to get somebody else to tell me what's going on inside (I don't know too many technically inclined people offline). I'm talking the screen saver comes on, and that's it, I gotta come inside. Never mind switching frequencies. A meter outside would be GREAT!!
     
  7. pstr8ahead

    pstr8ahead AllStar

    66
    0
    Mar 26, 2007
    Just google it. I have an old ntsc/atsc meter that cost me about 20 bucks. I also have a digital rf meter that was in the $600 range. There are a bunch out there.
     
  8. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

    3,954
    1
    Dec 19, 2006
    Outside...
    I've been googling. The only ones I can seem to find that actually let you input a channel/frequency cost over $150. Probably be cheaper to have a company come and install it lol
     
  9. pstr8ahead

    pstr8ahead AllStar

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    Mar 26, 2007
    You're probably right unless to wind blows it and you have to call them back. You'll probably wish you dropped the 150.
     
  10. peano

    peano Icon

    747
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    Feb 1, 2004
    I tried the phone aiming with the wife but a few minutes in there was dead air and no response. I scrambled down the tower to find her making tea.

    Then I installed a $50 rotor and aimed the antenna while sitting on my couch beer in hand.
     
  11. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

    3,954
    1
    Dec 19, 2006
    Outside...
    That might not be a bad idea. Install a cheap rotor, get it aimed, and then just unplug the rotor.
     
  12. sum_random_dork

    sum_random_dork Icon

    911
    18
    Aug 21, 2008
    I have used my Slingbox and phone, get the signal meter up on my Slingbox then use the phone to view it as I adjust the antenna.
     
  13. n3ntj

    n3ntj Hall Of Fame

    5,759
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    Dec 18, 2006
    Lancaster,...
    I call my wife on her cell phone and have her read back the signal readings if I need to make change to the antenna.
     
  14. gfrang

    gfrang Hall Of Fame

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    Aug 29, 2007
    Best thing is to just get a rota.
     
  15. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Leapin' Lizard Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    21,450
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    Jan 7, 2005
    Kittrell, NC
    Depends on what "best" you are "aiming" for...

    IF you need a rotor, because of lots of channels in differing directions... then that will help you somewhat.

    But if you don't otherwise need a rotor, you're better off not having one.

    It's a "weak" point in the antenna system... because it can (and does) get out of synch such that your indicator inside may or may not be towards where the actual antenna outside is oriented. Also, it allows the antenna to move and mis-align more freely than a solid locked-down rotor-less installation.
     
  16. gfrang

    gfrang Hall Of Fame

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    Aug 29, 2007
    Yea your right but i don't move mine much only for a couple of channels but were it really shines is for peaking out signals because i can't get on the roof anymore.

    And if it gets out of sync i can re sync from the living room.

    Also fun DXing in summer when skips come in but have to use tv tuner for that.

    I myself am glad i got it.
     
  17. peano

    peano Icon

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    Feb 1, 2004
    Mine doesn't move. We've had 70 mph winds and it stays where it is.
     
  18. gfrang

    gfrang Hall Of Fame

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    Aug 29, 2007
    The last biggie storm we had they said had wind gusts of up to 90 mph and i had a giant vhf antenna also.i only re synced after the storm for peace of mind also had the vhf antenna removed for the same reason.
     
  19. BattleZone

    BattleZone Hall Of Fame

    8,969
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    Nov 13, 2007
    [​IMG]

    This is a Digi-Air, made by the same folks who make Digi-Sat and Accu-Trak satellite meters. It is specifically designed to help you aim antennas for digital TV. Only problem is the price: about $200.
     

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