DIY Antenna


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Another Canuck

Thanks for the recommendation. :) I might just grab one, since we're planning on buying yet another HDTV soon. Instead of feeding it just basic cable I could split the signal between basic cable and an antenna.

I'm located close to the CFTO studios. My house faces south, likewise my antenna does so as well.

This is what I get for channels:

Channels.png

Yeah, it doesn't look like you're in the greatest area for reception. In comparison, here's what my chart looks like...

PmRLt.png

It's pretty well spot on for what I get, so what you see in yours is pretty well what you can expect.

I took a standard 6ft coax cable, stripped off the last 2-3 inches on one end. I then connected the uncut end to my tv like normal, next I placed a thumbtack in my wall. I made a little hook out of the exposed end and hang it from the thumbtack and get good signal from all the local channels. I would tell you how much it cost, but I didnt even buy the coax cable.

You already posted that a while ago and I already replied saying...

[...] using a proper antenna will work much better than a single wire or a coat hanger.

I have three different antennas here. One is a small telescopic antenna, a classic set of bunny ears and an amplified set of bunny ears. The first picks up about 2 stations, the second, 5, and the last 20.

It's also very dependent on location. You can't use the same antenna everywhere you go and expect the same results. Heck, if I just move my antenna to the other side of the house, I lose 4 channels.

I'm sure that antenna you made works, but a proper antenna would work much better.

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Denis W.

Just to clarify; the stations in red on my graph are rather weak stations I could probably catch on a clear day, and the ones in grey almost unviewable without constant artifacting?

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Another Canuck

Just to clarify; the stations in red on my graph are rather weak stations I could probably catch on a clear day, and the ones in grey almost unviewable without constant artifacting?

Close, you have to shift your answers over by one colour.

Green: You'll receive these without any problems, unless there's some strange weather.

White: You'll be able to pick these ones up, but they won't always be reliable. Expect them to fade in/out over the course of the day.

Red: These will be very difficult to get, but still achievable if you tweak the positioning of your antenna. Expect intermittent artifacting and for them to fade in/out over the course of the day.

Gray: Don't count on it. Unless you have a large antenna mounted atop a 50ft+ mast, you'll probably never see these except in rare weather conditions where you might experience Tropospheric Skip.

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Denis W.

Thanks for your reply. I'll probably still grab one even though it'll give me only three or four more channels (the DIY antenna is giving me five channels, with the French Radio-Canada as a weak signal). Perhaps it might get better post 2011, when the analog stations go offline here?

Also, I'm assuming this scenario will work: I put the antenna in some location in my house and connect it to a three-way splitter. Two of those ends connect to two TVs, where they're equipped with A/B switches to switch between analog/digital cable and OTV.

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Another Canuck

Thanks for your reply. I'll probably still grab one even though it'll give me only three or four more channels (the DIY antenna is giving me five channels, with the French Radio-Canada as a weak signal). Perhaps it might get better post 2011, when the analog stations go offline here?

Well, most stations in the area are already broadcasting in Digital despite 2011 being the cutoff. If the Analogue and Digital transmitters share the same power source, it's possible that when they shutdown the Analogue transmitters that the Digital transmitters will have more power. But I'm not sure if that's the case.

Also, I'm assuming this scenario will work: I put the antenna in some location in my house and connect it to a three-way splitter. Two of those ends connect to two TVs, where they're equipped with A/B switches to switch between analog/digital cable and OTV.

Yep, that will work. Just keep in mind that the three-way splitter will impede the signal by 3.5dbi at each split, and will effectively reduce the signal quality making it even harder to pick up some weaker stations.

I would try with the antenna attached to one TV first just to see what you can pick up before splitting it.

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nub

I've got one of these in the corner of my room, but I hardly ever use the tv. It works decently.

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Fred Derf

My understanding is that if you want any chance of picking up the U.S. networks in Toronto that you'll need a excellent antenna and an amplifier. People do do it.

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Another Canuck

My understanding is that if you want any chance of picking up the U.S. networks in Toronto that you'll need a excellent antenna and an amplifier. People do do it.

Not at all.

It all depends on your location and line of site. I pick up all of the major US networks (NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX) with an $80 un-amplified antenna.

As I mentioned earlier, I'm in the GTA and live pretty well 90 degrees between Toronto and Buffalo (where all those networks broadcast from) and have a great line of sight, so I don't have much trouble.

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Fred Derf

Not at all.

It all depends on your location and line of site. I pick up all of the major US networks (NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX) with an $80 un-amplified antenna.

As I mentioned earlier, I'm in the GTA and live pretty well 90 degrees between Toronto and Buffalo (where all those networks broadcast from) and have a great line of sight, so I don't have much trouble.

I was talking about Toronto, not the GTA. I'm sure things are better in Oakville, Burlington and such. A waterfront condo in Toronto may also work but most of the city has fairly spotty coverage of US networks without an amplifier.

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