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Get The Best Reception Regional Victoria


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#26 ben1805

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Posted 11 August 2008 - 06:16 PM

Cost means nothing if you have purchased the wrong type of antenna for your area and if you paid $250 for just the antenna, then you got ripped off.

If you paid for the installation, then you got ripped off anyway, as the antenna MUST be mounted ON the roof, after a site test to determine the best mounting position which receives the most reliable digital signals.

If you can tell me the make and model of the antenna, I can tell you if it's suitable or not.

I will get in my roof and check it out tomorrow
thanks

#27 Cods

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:10 PM

Request for information - Quality of DTV Reception in Baxter area?

G'day all, long time lurker, first time poster.

I've had a look around, used the Search function, and haven't found much that suggests this has been answered elsewhere - however, if I've missed the obvious, please feel free to hand out a virtual headslap and point me in the right direction! For example, I've assumed Baxter is 'Regional Victoria', not 'Melbourne'. Quite possibly such a mistake may be enough to get me killed in some circles...

Anyway, as I'll post in the appropriate forum soon, for various reasons I'm looking at buying an HD PVR and setting it up at my in-laws' place in Baxter (3911). It'll be used to suck down a dose of Australian programming on a regular basis so that we (OK, the kids) can watch it whilst we're in the USofA for a few years.

I'm just trying to get an idea of potential showstoppers to my cunning plan, and DTV reception is one of the possibles that I've thought of. As I'm not from Victoria, let alone the Mornington Peninsula, I'm relatively clueless as to whether the digital TV reception in the Baxter area is good/indifferent/poor. My in-laws aren't a great source of info on this topic, as they don't watch much TV, however I do know the following:
- They've definitely not gone digital (ie. they watch analogue TV on a ten year old telly plugged into a VCR/DVD combo).
- They do have an external, roof mounted antenna, type, make, model etc unknown; I'd assume it's old.
- The area around them is reasonably flat, but depending on where the transmitters are, it's vaguely possible that there may be some LOS issues.

So, are there any known problems with DTV reception in the Baxter area?

Any help / pointers / links or a straight answer from someone who knows would be appreciated.

Cheers!

Edited by Cods, 09 September 2008 - 01:19 PM.


#28 mtv

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:18 PM

Cods,

Baxter is generally fine for digital reception, however, as with any location, the correct antenna & cabling are important factors to having reliable reception.

#29 Cods

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:20 PM

Thanks for the extraordinarily swift response mtv.

I've just finished editing the post with some extra information, but your advice sounds promising.

Thanks again.

#30 mtv

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:32 PM

Cods,

The main transmitters are situated on Mt Dandenong, which is around 43 klms NNE from Baxter.

Reception in the area is generally very good, but naturally depends on terrain close to the house (trees etc).

If it's an old antenna, you may have difficulty receiving channels 11 & 12 (TEN & ABC digital respectively)

What's your folks analogue reception like (all channels incl SBS)?

#31 Cods

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Posted 09 September 2008 - 01:44 PM

<feverishly looks up Mt. Dandenong on Google Maps>

Thanks mtv. From memory, the analogue reception's not terrible, but that's far from being a conclusive report.

However my MIL is up visiting at the moment, I'll ask her and be back with more info.

Edited by Cods, 09 September 2008 - 01:46 PM.


#32 Cods

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 10:25 AM

Have checked with the Mother-In-Law, and a couple of surprising facts have emerged:

1. They are currently watching TV via a digital set top box.
2. Their reception on all channels is "fine".
3. They're watching on an older SD CRT TV, but can Rx the HD channels, according to "the chap who installed the set top box".

So it seems that my cunning plan to install a HD PVR at their place may have some legs to it. Sweet!

Edited by Cods, 10 September 2008 - 12:54 PM.


#33 mtv

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Posted 10 September 2008 - 02:52 PM

3. They're watching on an older SD CRT TV, but can Rx the HD channels, according to "the chap who installed the set top box".

It's obviously a HD box then. :)

#34 bobsi18

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:43 PM

Sorry - newbe - am not sure where to post this, so here goes:

Am just out of Pakenham 3810. Over the years, on our old tv, we have had good reception on channels 7 and 9, decent reception on 10, ok reception on 2 and poor (sometimes none) reception on channels 28 and 31.

We have just bought 2 new tvs: a sharp 42" aquos (lc-46d63x) and a "pangoo" lcd (LT22s18) [clive peters new cheapo brand].

On the sharp, channels 7 and 9 (both digital and analog) are great - we can't get any of the other channels on digital, the analog channel's are coming in a bit better than they used to.

On the pangoo, we can only get channel 7 on digital, and extremely poor analog reception for channels 7, 9 and 10. Channel 2, 28 and 31 don't appear at all.

So - first off, why the difference between the sharp and the pangoo? They are in the same place, I'm just using the same aerial - I'm just switching the cabel between the two.

Secondly, should we be looking at a new antenna? Any recommendations for brands/types and installers around this area (south east melbourne). (Forgive me for the next bit, I really am a newbe...). I've heard about boosters and amplifiers - would something like that do the trick?

Thanks for any advice all :)

#35 mtv

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 12:30 AM

bobsi18,

Some tuners perform better than others with poor signals. This may be the case with the different reception results from the two different tuners.

From your description, the problem is definitely poor signal strength and quality.

The problem is most likely that you have an old antenna designed for analogue channels only. The absence of TEN and ABC digital also suggests this as they are on channels 11 and 12 and most older antennas were designed to only receive up to channel 10.

The lack of SBS reception could be because you may not have a UHF antenna, or one which is not suitable for your area.

The first thing I would be checking is the antenna condition and suitability for digital reception, together with the existing coax cable, connections etc.

If your antenna is the problem, using an amp/booster will generally not help.

Selection of antenna/s will depend on how strong the signals are at your location... Pakenham is generally ok for digital reception, so a single combination antenna such as Fracarro LP34F should work ok.

#36 alanh

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 03:57 PM

Cods,
Look at the first post expecially the transmitter list and use Google to see if any translators are appropriate. The coverage area maps will also help.

AlanH

#37 mtv

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 04:24 PM

Have checked with the Mother-In-Law, and a couple of surprising facts have emerged:

1. They are currently watching TV via a digital set top box.
2. Their reception on all channels is "fine".
3. They're watching on an older SD CRT TV, but can Rx the HD channels, according to "the chap who installed the set top box".



Cods,
Look at the first post expecially the transmitter list and use Google to see if any translators are appropriate. The coverage area maps will also help.

AlanH

What's the point?

As it turned out, they don't have a reception problem at all, as was indicated by the OP.

#38 tamago_otoko

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Posted 03 October 2008 - 10:44 PM

Hey Guys,

A trip away from the big smoke has aroused my curiosity about receiving Metro TV in regional areas. Years ago, it was all about getting more channels as opposed to the one channel offered locally, but now it seems that Metro HD TV has taken off, leaving Country TV behind.

I know there are a few installers here. My question: how far away from Melbourne has anyone successfully received Metro TV (either Analogue or Digital)? Just I was in Bairnsdale, and noticed the huge VHF arrays and massive Yagis dating back many years, and wondered if it would still be possible to receive signals from Melbourne both there, and in other rural areas. Would these setups, or a newer equivalent, be any good for receiving Melbourne TV reliably?

Interested to hear your thoughts/experiences...

#39 mtv

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Posted 03 October 2008 - 11:12 PM

There's a lot of people who can receive Melbourne transmissions in Gippsland.

As with any installation, location is the key to success, however many have reliable reception.

Similarly, there are people in Melbourne who can receive Gippsland digital transmissions (some 160 kilometres from Mt Tassie).

Some areas of Ballarat receive Melbourne digital perfect, too, plus fringe areas like Woodend and Kilmore.

#40 alanh

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Posted 24 October 2008 - 08:43 PM

jrtm,
I would use one of these antennas particularly if there is hills between you and the transmitter. It is on my recommended list of band 4-5 antennas.

AlanH

#41 mumbles1

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 02:34 PM

Hope I am also in the right forum, I live in Lancefield 3435 Some of my neighbors get both Melbourne and Bendigo stations. I have checked the maps and we are firmly in the blue areas. I would also like to pickup the Bendigo stations . What equipment will I need? I have RG6 running down from my Aeriel and through out the house. Melbourne stations are by the main OK but do break up from time to time.

Any help would be appreciated

Ian

#42 alanh

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 05:20 PM

Ian,
Have you looked at the first post in this strand? Bendigo is in the transmitter list attachment in Central Victoria. This will give you the bands the antenna will have to cover. Then click on the link to that type of antenna. If your neighbours have a box on the pole below the antennas then this is likely to be a masthead amplifier.

See if you can recognise your neighnours' antenna type. Use the antenna basics link in the first post. There is a link in there to antenna drawings.

AlanH

#43 mtv

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 06:32 PM

Ian,

It's difficult to advise what you need without knowing signal measurements at your location.

Terrain plays a big part in success or failure and Lancefield can be challenging in places.

You would need a Band 3 VHF antenna for Melbourne, which will receive all digital channels except SBS.

For Bendigo, you would require a Band 4 & 5 (wideband) UHF antenna, which will receive all digital channels, including SBS (which carries the identical program to Melbourne).

The two antennas need to be combined with a diplexer.

Selection of the type of antennas, type of mount and any amplifiers will depend on available signals at your location.

#44 mumbles1

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 07:16 PM

Ian,

For Bendigo, you would require a Band 4 & 5 (wideband) UHF antenna, which will receive all digital channels, including SBS (which carries the identical program to Melbourne).

The two antennas need to be combined with a diplexer.

Selection of the type of antennas, type of mount and any amplifiers will depend on available signals at your location.



OK thanks both of you Col answered while I was working out how to read the chart . I take it that a diplexer combines the two signals from the two antenna?Are they expensive ? And is this worth it to clean up SBS and pick up a bit of variety I think it might be

#45 mtv

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 09:16 PM

Yes, a diplexer combines the separate UHF and VHF antennas with the combined output on one coax cable.

You should use a fully shielded type with 'F' connectors. Cost is around $20 - $30

There's not a great deal of difference with program content between Melbourne and Bendigo channels.

ABC and SBS are identical and the commercial networks on Bendigo have local news and different commercials than Melbourne.

Bendigo has much less HD programs than Melbourne at this stage.

Sometimes on Bendigo channels, there may be live sport coverage of an event in Melbourne, where the Melbourne channels are prohibited from screening it live.

If you don't need/want to see Bendigo news and commercials, I would recommend concentrating on making your Melbourne reception more reliable.

#46 mumbles1

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Posted 07 December 2008 - 02:06 PM

If you don't need/want to see Bendigo news and commercials, I would recommend concentrating on making your Melbourne reception more reliable.


OK then I did the upgrade of the antenna, Mast Head Amp and ran Quad cable with F Type connectors . We are now running 2 SD boxes and 1 HD in the house mostly the pictures are fine with a little break up from time to time and when the guy next door starts his fork lift or a truck goes by, is there any thing else I can do or is that it?

Ian

#47 mtv

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Posted 07 December 2008 - 07:14 PM

OK then I did the upgrade of the antenna, Mast Head Amp and ran Quad cable with F Type connectors . We are now running 2 SD boxes and 1 HD in the house mostly the pictures are fine with a little break up from time to time and when the guy next door starts his fork lift or a truck goes by, is there any thing else I can do or is that it?

Upgraded from what to what? (eg: make/model of antennas and amp you are now using)

The interference you experience from vehicles is probably a combination of two things... impulse noise, or reflection/blockage of the signals.

Your signal level/quality is probably low, which will have a poor signal to noise ratio (S/N)

The key to reliable digital reception is capturing a strong 'quality' signal at the antenna.

Amplifiers should only be used to overcome signal distribution losses (eg: splitting to multiple outlets) not just to try and compensate for a weak signal at the antenna, when a different antenna, or mounting location may provide better results.

All amplifiers amplify noise, as well as signals.

Just because you are within an 'adequate' signal area on the ABC digital signal coverage map, doesn't mean you will have reliable reception, due to several factors, like local terrain etc.

Is there anything else you can do?.. That depends on what has been done so far.

Have you had a site test performed and accurate digital signal field strength and quality measurements taken to determine the best mounting location and mast height for the antenna/s?

Has a site test been performed with different types of high-gain antennas specifically designed for fringe-area reception of Band 3 VHF and Band 4 UHF signals?

Are you using separate high gain antennas as above, with a fully-shielded diplexer, as this will give superior results, compared to a single combination antenna? (A masthead amp may have a bulit-in VHF/UHF dipelxer).

As I mentioned in my earlier post, without accurate signal measurements, the current status of your signals is unknown, so it's almost impossible to know what they are doing and if they can be improved.

More info on the antennas, amp and mounting can help a little.

#48 mumbles1

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:11 AM

Has a site test been performed with different types of high-gain antennas specifically designed for fringe-area reception of Band 3 VHF and Band 4 UHF signals?

Are you using separate high gain antennas as above, with a fully-shielded diplexer, as this will give superior results, compared to a single combination antenna? (A masthead amp may have a bulit-in VHF/UHF dipelxer).

As I mentioned in my earlier post, without accurate signal measurements, the current status of your signals is unknown, so it's almost impossible to know what they are doing and if they can be improved.

More info on the antennas, amp and mounting can help a little.


OK sorry it has taken so long to get back but I am here now and I have the details of the MH Amp it is a kingray MHW34FS or MHW34ES the antenna is unmarked but I rember getting the best one for our area I can not remember the name but it is not a hills it has a green shaft and 23 elements I think

#49 alanh

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 12:09 PM

Mumbles,
Antenna drawings
Does you green boomed antenna look as if it has the red elements in the above drawing?
At this 82 km, with some terrain in the way, you should be using a Band 3 phased array. This is a large antenna and will need a decent guyed mast. This will give you all digital channels except SBS Band 3 amplifier just for Melbourne.

The Bendigo transmitters are 50 km away also with terrain in the way. A UHF phased array would be best here also, It could also be used for SBS Melbourne.

As far as amplifers go, you can try your existing amplfier. The UHF input used for Bendigo and the VHF input for Melbourne. There is other options if this is insufficient.

Remember with the advertising of freeview, you may find that Bendigo Commercials starts HD next year??

So you really need to decide which programs you want once HD starts in Bendigo.

AlanH

#50 vtv

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Posted 16 December 2008 - 06:42 PM

Most of lancefield can receive both Bendigo and melbourne digital but positioning is very critical especially for SBS because of melb and Bendigo SBS being on similar frequencies.
A phased array VHF antenna is not generally required.
I typically use a Hills DY14 antenna or Matchmaster DR3018 both are large Yagi type 6-12 digital antennas for Melbourne VHF.
The best Antenna for Bendigo is as indicated a phased array and I find dual or stacked UHF antennas give the best results with better rejection of the unwanted UHF signal from Melbourne.

VTV