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The new OTA "micro antennas" have come of age...

Discussion in 'Local Reception' started by Mike500, Jun 27, 2010.

  1. Mike500

    Mike500 Hall Of Fame

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    May 10, 2002
    I've always had a large multi-element TV antenna on the roof with of my own house with a powered amplifier. And, I've always recommended and installed them for my customers.

    I've seen them in WalMart and RadioShack. Over the past 45 years, I've NEVER found them to be that good or even JUST adequate. I've wasted my money on them time and time again over the years, hoping that I would find a good one.

    On a whim, I purchased this Philips MANT940 off of Amazon.com.

    http://www.amazon.com/Philips-MANT9...3?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1277605391&sr=8-3

    I hooked it up, when I got it in August 2009. It worked OK inside the second floor bonus room. But, I was not really impressed. So, I put it on the shelf.

    A couple of days, ago, I had to take the big antenna off of the roof, because the roofers were coming next week to replace it due to hail damage covered by my homeowner's insurance.

    So, I decided to set up the Philips antenna in the attic for temporary use.

    I kwe that the signal was going to be degraded inside the attic. On that account I looked and found the octogonal gable vent on the side of the attic facing the direction of the majority of my signals. So, I fastened a 1x2 crossbar to the vertical 2x4 that always runs vertical everywhere these vents are installed. Using two long wire ties, the antenna is now permanently attached. Since the screen is fiberglass and the vents are made of thin vacuumformed vinyl sheeting, I kwew that the material was transparent to TV signals.

    To my amazement, this little gem received every channel I got with the big amplified behemouth that was outside on the roof and two more from Charlotte, NC, some 60 miles or more away. I even got a very strong good signal on my local CBS affiliate which went back to its original Channel 7 VHF actual frequency. This is supposed to be a UHF only antenna.

    Now, I am impressed. In the attic, I'll not have to install masts, grounding wires or worry about weather damage. Customers would be thrilled with these, since they work almost as good as the outdoor ones.

    Today, I spent a couple of hours taking down the ground wire and other remnants of the outside install. I'm sold on these NEW "Micro" amplified antennas.

    Maybe it's not for multidirectional locations, but this appears to be an easy to install inexpensive option.

    Walmart and Amazon sell the renamed model; SDV2940-27.

    As does Amazon.com;

    http://www.amazon.com/Philips-SDV29...cp_ob_e_title_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1277605391&sr=8-3

    They're on the shelves of most Walmarts that I have visited. I believe I saw it there, today, for $38.22.

    If it doesn't work for your situation, you can always take it back.

    Radio Shack sells and equivalent;

    http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2253765

    And,so does monoprice.com

    http://www.monoprice.com/products/p...=10901&cs_id=1090102&p_id=4730&seq=1&format=2

    I was skeptical of the reviews and was amazed with my experience.

    These vents have been used in most newer houses with vinyl siding throughout the US for the past 15 years or more.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Davenlr

    Davenlr Geek til I die

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    Sep 16, 2006
    Your mounting is the one thing about the MANT I found interesting. Outside, on a mast, it worked best vertical, but in the attic, the only way I could get all stations was to mount it horizontal like your picture. Its very very picky (its omnidirectional, but has some seriously deep nulls, and is susceptible to strong multipath), but you can usually find a place to make it work, given a little experimentation.
     
  3. Mike500

    Mike500 Hall Of Fame

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    May 10, 2002
    I guess, by mounting it the way I did with the incoming signal through the plastic vent, the multi-paths are weakened, as they have to pass through the OSB sheathing.

    I mounted it horizontal, in that I heard that it gives better reception for VHF. I have a Channel 7 station, which is at the exact original rf. I get a strong no fade signal always on that channel.

    I'm sold on this antenna.
     
  4. Davenlr

    Davenlr Geek til I die

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    Sep 16, 2006
    So is the cell phone industry, since the fractal antenna design is used inside a lot of cell phones today, due to their broadband ability. And as watching your cell signal go up and down as you move the phone around testifies, it has its shortcomings as well.
     
  5. Mike500

    Mike500 Hall Of Fame

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    May 10, 2002
    Basically, I have come to realize how I inadvertantly discovered by accident the resulting enhancement of this antenna from my choice of mounting location.

    Since multipaths have to travel through the roof sheathing and composition roof shingles or the wall sheathing, their signal strength and affect on the main high strength signal coming through the vent is minimal.

    On that account, mounting inside the attic is a "plus" compared to mounting the antenna outside in the open air.

    Those individuals having vinyl siding without the conveniently located vent can readily achieve the same result by using a router or "Ritozip" to remove the sheathing behind the vinyl siding inside of the attic.

    Vinyl, like the material in vinyl siding. is often used to house the live elements of many antennas, since it is transparent to the signal.
     
  6. Nick

    Nick Retired, part-time PITA DBSTalk Club

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    The...
    Your distance from xmtrs?
     
  7. Mike500

    Mike500 Hall Of Fame

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    May 10, 2002
    Anywhere from 10-60 miles,
     
  8. RasputinAXP

    RasputinAXP Kwisatz Haderach of Cordcuttery

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    Jan 23, 2008
    You're picking up VHF-lo on that thing? I may have to check it out for my WPVI-6 problems...
     
  9. Mike500

    Mike500 Hall Of Fame

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    May 10, 2002
    Yes, absolutely. As others have reported, it does it quite well in the horizontal position.
     
  10. RasputinAXP

    RasputinAXP Kwisatz Haderach of Cordcuttery

    3,145
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    Jan 23, 2008
    Just ordered the Monoprice version, I'll probably post back here with results. Even the thought of getting 6 and 12 tuned in is enough. Thanks!
     
  11. Cholly

    Cholly Old Guys Rule! DBSTalk Club

    4,834
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    Mar 22, 2004
    Indian...
    I'm a big fan of the antennas from antennasdirect.com. They have excellent antennas for all uses, and their warranty policy is superb. When I had an earlier model antenna fail, I sent them an email, and they replaced it with a Clearstream 2, including an amplifier and mount - all at no cost. I have the antenna mounted above the service door on the back of our garage, and have excellent performance on all the local channels, including VHF channel 11 (Charlotte PBS station WTVI).

    http://www.antennasdirect.com/store/clearstream-antennas.html
     
  12. 1980ws

    1980ws Legend

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    Mar 18, 2008
    Longwood,...
    I have this antenna hanging in a spare bedroom, suspended in mid air. It works fairly well, I get 30 plus Orlando area channels. Hooked up to 2 TV's, one with the AM 21. But it is vertical, so tonight I will pull up the coax end and see if I can increase my count by "going horizontal". I love this site, you never know what you might learn.
     
  13. Mike500

    Mike500 Hall Of Fame

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    May 10, 2002
    I just tried the Radio Shack DA 5200. It's performance is basically the same as the Mant940. I returned it, today. It has only a 90 day warranty.

    Then, I went to Walmart and did some research on the Philips SDV2940/27. This model replaced the MANT in late 2009/2010.

    To my surprise, I discovered that the only difference was that the MANT's "lifetime warranty" has been reduced to a "one year warranty." Otherwise, they are identical.

    Walmart has discontinued carrying these on their website. That probably means that they will not reorder for the stores as stock is depleted.

    The MANT actually sells for less than the SDV.
     
  14. RasputinAXP

    RasputinAXP Kwisatz Haderach of Cordcuttery

    3,145
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    Jan 23, 2008
    Right now I'm getting better, more steady reception in vertical than on my old CM. Horizontal I drop almost everything to the point that it can't maintain a lock. This is mounted higher than my old antenna, so I may actually have to play with the angles to see what kind of reflection I'm getting from nearby houses.
     
  15. RasputinAXP

    RasputinAXP Kwisatz Haderach of Cordcuttery

    3,145
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    Jan 23, 2008
    Angles adjusted. I can get down to channel 8. Two channels away. What a pain. *sigh*
     
  16. Davenlr

    Davenlr Geek til I die

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    Sep 16, 2006
    The amplifier inside the MANT is probably actually blocking channel 6. Get a LO/HI VHF combiner. Run the MANT into the high side, and on the low side, stick up one of those FM dipoles that come with stereos, using a BALUN and a short coax jumper. Position the FM dipole with the wires horizontal, the side facing the channel 6 transmitter. If you have any signal at all from channel 6 at your location, this should "add" it to the stations you already get with the MANT. Make sure the HI side of the combiner is a "power passing" type, or the MANT wont get any power. If you cant find one with power passing, you will have to run coax from the "dipole" to the location of the MANT power injector, and put the combiner between the TV and the power injector.
     
  17. jimmie57

    jimmie57 Hall Of Fame

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    Jun 26, 2010
    Texas City, TX
    I bought this antenna: http://www.monoprice.com/products/p...=10901&cs_id=1090102&p_id=4730&seq=1&format=2

    I live in Texas City, TX which is 33 miles from the braodcast stations in Houston.
    Very touchy where you put it and the angle of how it is installed.
    We have lots of channels here and I get them all except for PBS, channel 8, CBS, channel 11 and FOX, channel 26. I get absolutely no signal for either of these.
    I believe that these 3 might be on the VHF broadcast and this antenna is picking up UHF broadcasts only, even tho the paperwork and specs say that it gets the VHF also.
    I do get channels, 2,13,20,39,45,47,49,51,55,61,67.
    Oh well, it was cheap and I did get to install it on the wall inside my den. I will only be using it when the hard rain is blocking my feed from the satellite.
     
  18. chum76

    chum76 Mentor

    41
    1
    Jun 4, 2010
    Hey guys I need some advise. I have an old 8 bowtie uhf antenna I bought years ago and I hooked it up yesterday and I can only get one channel. If the pre-amp isnt on I cant get that one channel. I have a decoder box on the TV. The 3 real close towers are only 20-25 miles away, and I have the antenna 15ft above the ground. Do I need a new 8 bowtie HDTV antenna?
     

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