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Get The Best Reception - Melbourne


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#1 alanh

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Posted 25 November 2004 - 11:14 PM

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Edited by alanh, 25 March 2013 - 11:35 AM.


#2 scorpio

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Posted 27 November 2004 - 11:49 PM

Excellent work allanh!

I want to add just one thing.
New Hills LNDA (Low Noise Digital Amplifier) masthead is excellent and they are designed for DTT.
I had a big problems with one of the installations recently (house behind the hill, big trees on the way, 4 points etc....). Couldn't do it with anything except Hills Digitel DL3, newest phased array beauty (can't find bloody paperwork for the name) and LNDA.
Signal was even a bit over the top so I had to attenuate it.
Unfortunatley, you have to play with attenuators coz LNDA have fixed gain. It can be used for separate VHF/UHF or combo antennas.

Cheers

scorpio

#3 alanh

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Posted 29 November 2004 - 10:52 PM

Scorpio,
Thanks for the complements. I am intending to this for all areas when I get the time!

From the photo on the Hills website, the DL3 is a log periodic VHF antenna, designed to receive channels 0 - 12. with a gain of 4-10 dB. With one small element the DY10 8-11 dB. The front to back ratio is much better. The advantage of this antenna is that it is not designed to receive channels below channel 6. This means it picks up much less interference from mains related systems and car ignitions.

I looked for the amplifier you quoted and cannot find it. Is it a distribution amplifier or a masthead amplifier? I have not recommended Hills amplifiers because the gain is less than Kingray, and not variable. They both use surface mounted components and claim to be digital compatible.

AlanH

#4 scorpio

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Posted 01 December 2004 - 12:44 AM

I Know about DL3. The problem that I had at this job is that the customer had one Digital STB and 3 other analogue TV's, and unfortunatley, they are watching ABC quite frequently on analogue TV, so I had no choice but to add Ch2.

After adding LNDA (which is masthead), everything fell into place both signal strength and quality, like some kind of magic. :blink:
LNDA is not on their Web yet, as well as new UHF phased array.
Give them a call - John on 03 9238 2533, and ask for details.

Once more, you've done excellent job, m8. :P

Cheers

scorpio

#5 alanh

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Posted 01 December 2004 - 11:57 PM

Scorpio,

I am not in Melbourne. I will add it to my post when it is on their website so that any one can see what it looks like.

If you can encourage John to push to get it on the website Hills may make some more sales!

Could you also find out if they intend to modify the Band 3 phased array to increase its sensitivity on channels 11 & 12. It would have applications for long distance and blocked path sites where digital band 3 is used.

Thanks,

AlanH

#6 darulezy

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 11:35 AM

Could you also find out if they intend to modify the Band 3 phased array to increase its sensitivity on channels 11 & 12. It would have applications for long distance and blocked path sites where digital band 3 is used.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


YES!
I need something like that to further improve my reception, last time I looked there was no suitable antenna. Ideally this antenna would have a matched masthead amplifier with variable gain for each band, and a shielded masthead amp would be prefered. One input would be ok, since I only intend on using a combined antenna.

EDIT: Oh and I'm sick of terminating co-ax, so a package solution would be nice (ie. antenna, masthead and terminated co-ax supplied in one pretty cardboard box) :blink:

#7 alanh

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Posted 07 January 2005 - 02:52 PM

darulezy,
From the testing that Les Field did, there is a drop of around 6 dB in channels 11 & 12 on the Hills CA16.

You have made me realise that I have not put masthead amplifier recommendations in the original post for Melbourne.

To amplify Band 3 only use
Kingray MHV44HLG It has 44 dB maximum gain, but it contains a diplexer as well. So you can feed an amplified UHF signal through it.
The gain is adjustable. So a drop of 6 dB is not huge in this context.

Kingray PSK08 connects the power to the amplifier at the receiver end through a plug pack.

http://www.gme.net.a...es.php#MHV44HLG

For Band 4 you need to use for Mt Dandenong (SBS..)
See http://www.gme.net.a.../mhu_series.php (Do not use MHU44BG5)

Band 5 which is used for translators.
http://www.gme.net.a...es.php#MHU44BG5

AlanH

#8 nerve_center

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Posted 11 January 2005 - 05:11 PM

Hi,

I hope I'm not rehashing something here but I live in Heathmont and have trees and a hill between me and Mt. Dandenong. This results in lost sound packets particuly on CH9. (Relocated or raising the antenna isn't an option).

As I have pretty much line of site to Como I thought I might point the antenna that way. Sshould it be vertically polarised? Suggestions on antenna model etc would be appreciated.

Thanks,

#9 alanh

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Posted 11 January 2005 - 10:10 PM

nerve_center,
Yes it is vertically polarised, and use a band 5 antenna
Fracarro 20RD5 11-14 dB
Hills TMX18 B5 11-16.5 dB
Wisi EB66 Ch 38-69 ≤16.5 dB (29 acceptance)

Log Periodic
Fracarro LP5HV 9.0 dB

http://www.hillsante.../UHFAntenna.pdf
http://www.fracarro..../0/Antennas.pdf

The higher the number of dB the more sensitive and more directional.

AlanH

#10 nerve_center

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Posted 12 January 2005 - 08:22 AM

nerve_center,
Yes it is vertically polarised, and use a band 5 antenna
Fracarro 20RD5 11-14 dB
Hills TMX18 B5 11-16.5 dB
Wisi EB66 Ch 38-69 ≤16.5 dB (29 acceptance)

Log Periodic
Fracarro LP5HV 9.0 dB

http://www.hillsante.../UHFAntenna.pdf
http://www.fracarro..../0/Antennas.pdf

The higher the number of dB the more sensitive and more directional.

AlanH

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Much apreciated. Thanks for the prompt response.

nerve_center

#11 kiwi_aus

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Posted 21 January 2005 - 11:33 PM

I am in a slight gully / side of hill in upwey melbourne and wondered what type of antenna to get

I am almost in line of sight for upwey albeit below the tree line
behind Mt Dandenong and slightly around the corner for ferntree gully, I think the selby station may be above and along the gully

I have a set top box topfield with reasonable ok signal but not great, loose a bit of channel 10 sometimes, and anoluge signal not very good

with a 4 way powered kingray splitter sam204dp, with 1 connection sofar - want to have 3 connections, antenna currently is a phased array with 4 sets of "fingers"

similar to this http://www.dse.com.a...duct/View/L3087

I have only manually aligned signal with rough line of sight to where I "think" tower is. mounted off fascia

I had originally used selby but then lost channel 10 altogether, but had reasonable analouge signal now pointed towards ferntree gully, only reasonable result now

also what approx cost for an installer to "tune" antenna would I expect

thanks Grant

#12 M'bozo

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Posted 22 January 2005 - 02:04 PM

Hills LNDA link: http://www.hillssign.../LNDA_Flyer.pdf

Be nice if Hills site in Australia updated to showcase their new products, eg only became aware of Ultimax 36 U [WISI EE06 clone] when seen in local distributor's store.

#13 alanh

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Posted 22 January 2005 - 04:08 PM

kiwi_aus,
Send me your street address via the My contols messaging on this site (This will maintain privacy for us both. Use my member name alanh. I will give you the direction. You will need a compass which is secured to a piece of wood to keep it from the metal work of the antenna.

AlanH

#14 poidahl

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Posted 22 January 2005 - 04:48 PM

I am in a slight gully / side of hill in upwey melbourne and wondered what type of antenna to get

I am almost in line of sight for upwey albeit below the tree line
behind Mt Dandenong and slightly around the corner for ferntree gully, I think the selby station may be above and along the gully

I have a set top box  topfield  with reasonable ok signal  but not great, loose a bit of channel 10 sometimes,  and anoluge signal not very good   

with a 4 way powered kingray splitter  sam204dp, with 1 connection sofar  - want to have 3 connections,  antenna currently is a phased array with 4 sets of "fingers"

similar to this  http://www.dse.com.a...duct/View/L3087

I have only manually aligned signal with rough line of sight to where I "think" tower is. mounted off fascia

I had originally used selby but then lost channel 10 altogether, but had reasonable analouge signal    now pointed towards ferntree gully,  only reasonable result now

also what approx cost for an installer to "tune" antenna would I expect

thanks  Grant

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Grant, why don't you use the signal level / quality bars in your set top box (not ideal but better than guessing) as a guide to which transmitter and antenna position. When I did antenna work in your area years ago I was struck by the difficulty of the terrain and that sometimes the reception would be better from an unexpected direction. That can be truer than ever now all Melbourne secondary services (Selby, Upwey, FertreeGully, ArthursSeat, RosebudSouth) use the same channels for digital in an innovative Single Frequency Network. So regardless of AlanH's observations from afar, you could find a most unlikely antenna position to give you the best result. It might take an hour or 2 of shouting 'hows that?' but it holds promise!

#15 Alfred the Great

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Posted 22 January 2005 - 09:12 PM

I live almost next door to the Belmont Avenue tower in Upwey but I aim at Selby for UHF and a second VHF antenna points to Mt Dandenong.
PM me the nearest intersection to your house and I'll try and help.

Steve

#16 kiwi_aus

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Posted 22 January 2005 - 09:57 PM

thanks....I will seem to remember similar recommendation a while ago, I'd forgotten about it ie unexpected direction

I had roughly setup using the set top signal level

what annoys me is I HAD a good signal from selby - no changes, then out of the blue I lose SBS... could live with that, then channel 10 goes too
I also had good anilogue no matter what I did couldn't get it back :P
I still plan to raise the antenna in the future :blink:

Grant, why don't you use the signal level / quality bars in your set top box (not ideal but better than guessing) as a guide to which transmitter and antenna position.  When I did antenna work in your area years ago I was struck by the difficulty of the terrain and that sometimes the reception would be better from an unexpected direction.  That can be truer than ever now all Melbourne secondary services (Selby, Upwey, FertreeGully, ArthursSeat, RosebudSouth) use the same channels for digital in an innovative Single Frequency Network.  So regardless of AlanH's observations from afar, you could find a most unlikely antenna position to give you the best result.  It might take an hour or 2 of shouting 'hows that?' but it holds promise!



#17 Alfred the Great

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Posted 22 January 2005 - 11:45 PM

Ah yes, a very difficult location. The Upwey translator is almost due south from you, Mt Dandenong transmitter is almost due North (NNE). If you aim for the Upwey Village town centre, you should be on a line to the Selby translator.
I don't know if you've driven up Belmont Avenue, it's off Morris just up from the town centre. The translator is next to the old lookout tower, near the corner of Highcliff Road.
One of my antenna is similar to yours - pointed at Selby as previously stated. I also have intermittent problems with SBS, Channel 7 and Channel 10. 7 & 10 I can substitute with the Mt Dandenong reception but SBS I only get from Selby (although SBS I can get via Foxtel Digital satellite).
Hope it helps, good luck.
Steve

#18 darulezy

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Posted 27 February 2005 - 12:02 PM

Hills LNDA link: http://www.hillssign.../LNDA_Flyer.pdf

Be nice if Hills site in Australia updated to showcase their new products, eg only became aware of Ultimax 36 U [WISI EE06 clone] when seen in local distributor's store.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Funny you had to go to a NZ site to look at what an Australian company produces.

Is it a masthead amp? the pics in the pdf dont show it to be?
If it is a masthead amp, what stops water from entering the switch?

also why is ch1 to 3 amplified?
:blink:

#19 craigread

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Posted 31 March 2005 - 05:23 PM

I know this seems to be a pretty common thread, but I'd also like to get some advice for Upwey.

I'm in Forest Park Road (at the bottom of the hill from where the Upwey transmitter appears to be), have a mass of trees in the way, extremely poor analog reception and marginal digital reception. I have a Yagi antenna (set correctly for vertical polarisation), have installed quad shielded RG6, F-type connectors (on everything except the power injector, the antenna and masthead amp) and raised the antenna on a 6m pole.

All of this has made very marginal improvements to my reception, except the reception appeared to drop on some channels when I raised the antenna. :blink: The antenna has a Kingray MHW34G mast head amplifier (which is mounted at the base of the 6m pole for easy access) with a power injector under the house, just before a 4-way splitter. There are 2 outlets connected and in use at the moment.

I have two digital receivers currently. A topfield set top box, and a linux based PVR using two Twinhan HD cards (which I build and sell as part of my business). Since, I'm selling these systems, obviously I want to have good reception on which to demonstrate them (hence all the work I've done so far).

My current reception is as follows: By turning my antenna I can get crystal clear pictures on ABC and SBS all of the time with garbage on the commercial channels all of the time OR I can get a reasonably good picture on ABC and the commercial channels most of the time but zero signal on SBS all of the time. I'm not sure what's going on there, as I thought there was only 1 Upwey transmitter for all channels.

According to the Topfield STB, I have 100% signal (with the amp turned all the way up) but no signal if I turn the amp down. Same story if I disconnect the power injector. According to MythTV's setup program, I get around 35-37% SNR and 29-31% Signal Strength (although the readings are considered to be anecdotal at best). I can get a good picture on the STB on all SD channels but nothing in HD (which it's capable of receiving, but not capable of displaying in full resolution). The MythTV PVR reception is what really needs resolving.

Any help and/or advice would be appreciated.

#20 poidahl

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Posted 31 March 2005 - 05:37 PM

Many don't realise that FTG Selby and Upwey are low power transmitters (relative to Mt.D., and being at UHF - trees and leaves (of which there are many) make a huge difference to signal levels. Wonder if a local community group invested in a simple signal level meter that handy electrical people could rent, if it would take the heat out of situations like this. Sorry but the box level / quality bars can be more of a hindrance than a help.

#21 alanh

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Posted 31 March 2005 - 11:27 PM

Craigreid,
Two things;
Mast head amplifier must be mounted close to the antenna, so in your case about 300 mm below.
The amplifier examples I gave are for the Main Transmitter in each area. In your case this is irrelevant and so you can get another 10 dB gain and less noise if it is mounted under the antenna.
You need to use a http://www.gme.net.a...es.php#MHU44BG5

You did not say what type of antenna you are using and whether there is terrain in the way.

Location:Lookout Tower TV translator site Belmont Avenue UPWEY

poidahl,
This is up to the community, although, the actual location of the antenna can be important as you say.

A

#22 craigread

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Posted 01 April 2005 - 01:15 PM

Thanks for the response guys.

Many don't realise that FTG Selby and Upwey are low power transmitters (relative to Mt.D., and being at UHF - trees and leaves (of which there are many) make a huge difference to signal levels. Wonder if a local community group invested in a simple signal level meter that handy electrical people could rent, if it would take the heat out of situations like this. Sorry but the box level / quality bars can be more of a hindrance than a help.

I actually asked a local company if they knew of anybody I could hire a digital signal meter from, and they didn't. Would be nice if it was possible to get hold of one.

Craigreid,
Two things;
Mast head amplifier must be mounted close to the antenna, so in your case about 300 mm below.

Ouch, guess I need to pull the 6m pole down again. Luckily, I have enough RG6 cable left over to redo if necessary.

The amplifier examples I gave are for the Main Transmitter in each area. In your case this is irrelevant and so you can get another 10 dB gain and less noise if it is mounted under the antenna.
You need to use a http://www.gme.net.a...es.php#MHU44BG5

Thanks, I'll check out that amplifier.

You did not say what type of antenna you are using and whether there is terrain in the way.

Sorry, I thought I mentioned that it's a Yagi. I have no other info on the antenna type. If I'm going to purchase a new masthead amp, would it be worthwhile to go the whole hog and purchase another antenna as well? I can get the band 5 version of the TMX18 at trade prices, but I thought the Yagi I have should have done the job.

Now that I've raised the mast, I don't think there is actual terrain in the way. But there are a lot of trees in the way. I have considered trying to point at Selby, but there is almost definitely terrain in the way heading that direction and I'd need to change the polarity of the antenna (a major PITA when it's on top of a 6m pole).

Location:Lookout Tower TV translator site Belmont Avenue UPWEY

It's a bit hard to determine exactly where the transmitter is from where I am. I can see a transmitter on a hill to the NW of me, but the best reception comes from the hill almost directly North (where I think the watertower is). I think the transmitter to the NW may be a mobile phone tranmission tower.

If you look at this map, I'm on Forest Park Road, just east of the Tasman Avenue intercection. Unfortunately, whereis is horribly slow via my ISP (or it may just be whereis).

#23 alanh

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Posted 01 April 2005 - 09:16 PM

Craig,
I suggest you go for a drive up Belmont Av. I have been in your area, but I do not live anywhere near you. North could easily be a possibility.

If you think the trees are a real problem then a phased array will be better. The longest axis of the whole antenna will be horizontal.

AlanH

#24 alanh

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Posted 01 April 2005 - 09:19 PM

Craig,
I suggest you go for a drive up Belmont Av. I have been in your area, but I do not live anywhere near you. North could easily be a possibility.

Phased Arrays
This type of antenna is much more directional in the horizontal direction when used for vertical polarisation. The longest axis of the whole antenna will be horizontal.

If you use a yagi, and the transmitter antenna is above you don't forget to point the antenna upwards, because it is much more directional in the vertical direction

AlanH

#25 kiwi_aus

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Posted 02 April 2005 - 11:09 AM

craig the tower would be due north to maybe nne slightly
the other tower is as you suppect a mobile tower, pointing towards that will give you approx. towards the mt dandenong tower, but thats over the hill and on the other side of the dandenong peak also, also thats horizontal and so is selby,
having said that I've had a phased array mounted vertically pointed at mt dandy and had reasonably good signal ( forgot to reorintate it)