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alanh

Get The Best Reception, Hunter Valley

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Les,

The main dBA website's Reception locator also contains this link from each selected transmitter site to the ABC reception line's map.

I cannot comment to the ABC because I do not know the areas in dispute.

Re the Beresford area, The ABC has a 10 kW Local radio transmitter on 1233 kHz and a 10 kW Radio National transmitter on 1512 kHz. If the power level is high enough it causes a corduroy style pattern over an analog picture. In digital it causes picture & sound breakup. The above transmitters are 10 kW each. I know it is a problem with 50 kW transmitters.

The effect is intermodulation between the TV signal carrier and the AM radio carrier to make the interference visible.

AlanH

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Alan,

I haven't seen AM interference on analog TVs for 25 years as caused by radio stations. It used to be a problem with mono and early colour TVs but not of recent times as far as I know. There are also 6 AM transmitters on Mt. Sugarloaf. There is an interelationship on some channels which can cause this type of patterning which you describe, but only on SC at Mt. Sugarloaf on Channel 57 (and it is an antenna installer's issue).

lesf

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Alan,

I haven't seen AM interference on analog TVs for 25 years as caused by radio stations. It used to be a problem with mono and early colour TVs but not of recent times as far as I know. There are also 6 AM transmitters on Mt. Sugarloaf. There is an interelationship on some channels which can cause this type of patterning which you describe, but only on SC at Mt. Sugarloaf on Channel 57 (and it is an antenna installer's issue).

lesf

Les,

I haven't seen or heard of any AM radio interference on Analogue TV's around here either, but I do know the ABC Newcastle AM transmission site stuffs with the ignition/computer system on my car (late model XR8 Falcon).

Within about a 500m radius of the antenna my car runs rough & will stall at around idle speeds. I've had it up Mt Sugarloaf, Black Mountain Canberra & Knights Hill Illawara, & all around the Sydney transmission sites (both AM & FM/TV) & as close as 30m to various AM transmitting antennas around Australia, all with no effect, but for some reason my car doesn't like the ABC Newcastle AM radio site.

The 6 AM transmitters on Mt Sugarloaf, are you talking about the vision carrier transmitters of the 6 Analogue TV channels or are there another 6 AM transmitters on Mt Sugarloaf? I haven't bothered searching through my transmitter list yet to find out.

Cheers

Glenn.

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Les & Glenn,

The radio transmitters you speak of are FM on the same towers as TV. ABC radio is in Beresford, 2HD (1143 kHz) transmitter is in Sandgate 2KY (1341 kHz) repeater on Birmingham Gardens and SBS's 2EA (1413 kHz) is in Hexam. All other stations in Newcastle are on FM between 99.7 - 106.9 MHz and are all on Sugarloaf.

It would appear that none of these station's power is any match for your TV stations. The most likely ones would be NBN3 and ABHN5A.

To identify interference look at Better Radio & TV booklet

Glenn,

I suggest you look at the earthing in the engine management system. Particularly rust under the earthing connection. Start at the negative lead from the battery.

AlanH

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Les & Glenn,

The radio transmitters you speak of are FM on the same towers as TV. ABC radio is in Beresford, 2HD (1143 kHz) transmitter is in Sandgate 2KY (1341 kHz) repeater on Birmingham Gardens and SBS's 2EA (1413 kHz) is in Hexam. All other stations in Newcastle are on FM between 99.7 - 106.9 MHz and are all on Sugarloaf.

It would appear that none of these station's power is any match for your TV stations. The most likely ones would be NBN3 and ABHN5A.

To identify interference look at Better Radio & TV booklet

Glenn,

I suggest you look at the earthing in the engine management system. Particularly rust under the earthing connection. Start at the negative lead from the battery.

AlanH

AlanH,

I know you're trying to be helpful, but almost every time you say something you prove to those who do know something that you know nothing, & without any local knowledge a lot of your info is way off the mark & is more unhelpful than helpful to those who don't have any idea what they're talking about or trying to achive.

I do know the transmitters you're talking about, here's a bit of a backgrounder.

The ABC AM transmission site is actually at Woodberry not Beresfield, & to use a radius of 1km from the antenna (for arguments sake), there would be at a guess 500+ houses within this radius, the 1341 khz transmitter at Birmingham Gardens, (same radius) maybe 1000+ houses, the 1143 & 1413 khz transmitters are negligable with maybe 50 -100 houses within this radius (those two transmitter sites are actually only about 1km apart & in mainly swamplands).

So if the AM transmitters were causing interference it would be major & well known about.

I don't know what Les is talking about, I'm waiting for his response, but here's some little known info you may not know about in relation to what I asked Les.

Although some are located in the FM Broadcast band & are generally thought of as FM transmissions, Analogue (PAL) colour TV is actually a mixture, the sound part of the "Channel" is Frequency Modulated (FM), but the vision part (vision carrier) is actually Amplitude Modulated (AM), that's why you get interference in the vision but not the sound during a thunderstorm & why faulty electrical items give interference to the vision but not the sound.

There are 6 Analogue TV channels coming from Mt Sugarloaf 3 Commercial, 1 SBS & 2 ABC (1 VHF, 1 UHF), that's why I asked Les if this was the AM transmitters he was talking about.

And you obviously know nothing about RF interference into electrical circuits.

The interference in my car is because the RF gets past the shielding (or lack of it) & either overloads & corrupts the computer circuits (incl. fuel injection) or gets into the ignition leeds & causes discharges into the cylinders causing the engine to misfire. Although the body of a car is refered to as the ground or negative, it's not actually grounded to earth (as the tyres are insulators) it's only the return path of the DC circuit, rust under the earthing connection would affect the car all the time not only around 1 transmission site.

Most transmission sites don't have any warnings as most are out of the public's way, but if you ever travel to Canberra, go up Black Mountain to Telstra Tower & you will find signs in the car park warning that the high levels of RF radiation may affect some car ignition systems & they give you a phone no. to ring if you can't get your car started or it won't run properly. It's a well known possibility in the industry (even though it's rare), but at least Telstra let you know what's happening & why if it does happen.

Cheers

Glenn.

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Glenn,

I have worked in the TV broadcasting side for 25 years, and whilst only worked in Newcastle as a trainee many years ago some things do not change.

Beresfield is where the ACMA says the ABC transmitters are located. So if 10 kW transmitters do not give trouble when the TV transmitters are only 15 km away this makes life easy for you. This is definitely not the case where there is 50 kW transmitters and the TV transmitters are 30 km away. At this power level you can listen to ABC radio whilst having conversations on corded phones.

I am well aware that the limiting which occurs in FM receivers will remove AM interference unless it gets into the audio stages. I know someone who has a 5.1 sound system who has to listen to Radio National whenever the power is on to this amplifier.

The vestigial sideband of AM used in vision transmission cannot reject another AM signal if it is strong enough to intermodulate in either the tuner or rust in the antenna system. Hence the patterns in the Better TV & Radio book example of AM interference.

I had to respond to Les because he gave the impression that the AM transmitters are on Mt Sugarloaf when only the FM ones are.

I know of a car which stopped each time it passed the front gate of a 50 kW AM transmitter site. The mechanic was given a lesson in "earthing" and the rust was removed where the battery was connected to the chassis. At UHF and higher you are relying on the shielding by the car body including the bonnet. It may be wise to check the resistance between it and the negative terminal of the battery?!

I know that Ford has a 10 kW transmitter in a shielded room which is used to test EMI before cars are released onto the market.

To Black Mountain tower. Not only are there high powered UHF & VHF TV transmitters, FM transmitters it is also the connection point for microwave communications into Canberra. So there are many microwave transmitters a variety of frequencies to add to the mix. All transmitter sites have RF radiation warning signs because it is hazardeous to humans to get overexposure.

So TV and radio transmitters work the same way in Newcastle as they do anywhere else. Other places have SFNs as well. The only real difference is that you have TV in 4 MHz of the FM band and are one of the few places using channel 5A for TV.

AlanH

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AlanH,

Thanks for that info, it explains a lot & again backs up my theory.

You say you've worked in the broadcasting side of TV for 25 years, maybe you should stay there & restrict your comments to what you know.

I've found in the past (with a few exceptions) that most broadcast engineers are very good at what they do, but as long as the signal leaves the broadcast antenna correctly, they are not interested in what happens to it after that or the difficulties antenna installers have to deal with to get a good or reliable reception.

They will call you & ask you to do some testing for them to help them fault find if there does seem to be a problem their end, but if everythings OK with them stiff, it's the comsumers/antenna installers problem.

Quite often a fault can occur at their end but go un-noticed & they can be notified by an antenna installer or consumer & unless it's major wont do anything about it until many complaints are received.

Also they don't take note & listen to installers/consumers about (potential) problems until/unless it directly effects them.

(Steveb, if your reading this I'm not having a dig at you).

Read the thread in the Newcastle forum about the Gan Gan translators for Port Stephens & you'll find NBN didn't stand up & take note until it bit them in the arse. By not discounting the problem after they were notified of it & a simple site survey at the planing stage could have avoided it & had design plans changed before commissioning stage.

Yes, Radio & TV transmitters work the same the world over, but local conditions effect the reception, & if you don't have the local knowledge of the problem how can you fix it?

Would you consider giving reception advice to front line antenna installers in America, England or somewhere in Europe?

What you're trying to do is like the University graduates with degrees in everything & can tell you word for word what's in the theory book & what should be happening, but when they get out into the real world have no practical experience & don't know where to start or when something happens that theoretically shouldn't (or vice versa) they have no idea what to do & you could get as much solved by getting a year 8 high school student & telling them to fix this.

In regards to your question about AM radio interference, both me & Les told you it wasn't an issue here, but you kept pushing it & kept telling us about broadcast sites we already know & have visited many times.

We can all read the ACMA registers, but I have proved many times that they are not totally correct, transmitters are not always where the registers say they are, yes the ABC AM broadcast site is on the register as being at Beresfield, but I'm telling you it's at Woodberry in the reserve over the road from Francis Greenway High School (Beresfield & Woodberry are neighbouring suburbs though).

In relation to my car, I'm not only an antenna installer but I'm a Electrical Technician & also install Telephone & Data networks (Hardware), & can assure you there is no rust under the chassis earthing point.

With regards to Black Mountain, yes all transmission sites have signs warning of the RF emitions danger, but they don't tell you they may effect your cars ignition & keyless entry systems like the ones at Black Mountain do. Also yes Black Mountain has many microwave transmissions but so does Mt Sugarloaf (check the ACMA registers) & if you add up all the output powers there is more (higher levels) of RF radiation coming off Mt Sugarloaf than Black Mountain.

I do know where you're coming from & what you are talking about, I want to make a career change to Broadcast Engineering & have done quite a bit of private study into how RF broadcasting works, I'm especially interested in AM broadcast Radio (I know it's old technology, but it works well & facinates me), so I sometimes make comments of the broadcasting side of things, but you don't seem to have the knowledge of the receiving side (especially in all the areas you comment on), so you can't & shouldn't really comment on what to do or what's best (theoretically, maybe but practically, no).

So it would be nice & more helpful if you just stick to letting us know how it works & let the antenna installers with local knowledge & many years experience dealing with & solving the reception problems give out the reception advice.

Cheers

Glenn.

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yes the ABC AM broadcast site is on the register as being at Beresfield, but I'm telling you it's at Woodberry in the reserve over the road from Francis Greenway High School (Beresfield & Woodberry are neighbouring suburbs though).

totally correct. It's around 300m inside the Woodberry area from memory.

Give me a local with knowledge any day.

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All,

I have my answer, that AM interference is not a problem in Newcastle because the AM transmitters are not powerful enough and the Channel 3 signal is very strong in this area, 300 m is immaterial.

AlanH

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I can't help thinking that the so called "local expert" antenna people are being anything but helpful in this and other forums. They are bagging alanh for attempting to provide some information, while providing little but abuse themselves. They would enhance their reputations and their business if they were seen to be helpful and contributing to what seems to be a really poorly understood and documented situation.

David

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All,

The Beresford transmitters are only 22 kW they should try 100 kW!

The main TV transmitters are not very far way.

AlanH

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Alan,

I haven't seen AM interference on analog TVs for 25 years as caused by radio stations. It used to be a problem with mono and early colour TVs but not of recent times as far as I know. There are also 6 AM transmitters on Mt. Sugarloaf. There is an interelationship on some channels which can cause this type of patterning which you describe, but only on SC at Mt. Sugarloaf on Channel 57 (and it is an antenna installer's issue).

lesf

Just to chirp in again, Alan, the AM transmitters on Mt. Sugarloaf are the only ones I know that cause AM interference on a TV screen. However, it is only on one channel and the problem can be addressed by the diligent installation of the receive antenna at the client's residence.

Regards

lesf

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...... by the diligent installation of the receive antenna ......

Hmm! Probably incredibly expensive to have 'lesfv' work the 'black arts' at your place.

I suspect David Morrison has offered the only 100% factual post to date :blink:

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Les,

I did not notice your December post.

There is no AM transmitters on Mt Sugarloaf, only FM & TV. The top of a mountain is the worst place for an AM transmitter. They need good wet earth mats such as those in the Beresford area.

AlanH

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Alanh

Its BERESFIELD and HEXHAM...

Glenn,

You know that Gan Gan is a government funded, and government approved site. You should know by now that our hands were tied in this situation. Nothing we could do was going to change the way it was set up.

And David, I'll put the local knowledge up against anyone thats miles and miles away any day of the week. Les and Glenn have proven themselves in this area time and time again, I don't think someone on the other side of the country has call to comment. Alan, although he means well, has posted inaccurate information in the past. Only local people in the field who do this stuff day to day have the true knowledge.

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And David, I'll put the local knowledge up against anyone thats miles and miles away any day of the week. Les and Glenn have proven themselves in this area time and time again, I don't think someone on the other side of the country has call to comment. Alan, although he means well, has posted inaccurate information in the past. Only local people in the field who do this stuff day to day have the true knowledge.

I don't doubt that (some) local people have the knowledge and experience required, and I never claimed that. What I commented on was that instead of demonstrating it, they resort to name calling.

If I were having reception problems, I would look here for information. If I were to see posts from someone who seemed to know what they were talking about and was quite helpful, I would probably give them a call.

But instead we get people who seem to have huge egos telling others they are wrong and not contributing anything themselves. Not exactly an attitude that would endear them to potential customers.

And I should add that I have had past experience with one of the "local experts" you mention. He just cut the cable to one antenna to "resolve" a problem, which just created others, and did not tell anyone what he had done, let alone ask first!

David

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My brother has just had an antenna installer claiming they have thirty years experience complete an installation for him. He lives in the Elermore Vale region so I had a look around the street and noticed many installations were 40 foot masts consisting of Wisi EE06 UHF antenna and a FM for NBN. This installer had told me that he would use a UHF yagi and would need a masthead amplifier with 34 DB on UHF to perform perfect analog and digital reception. I suggested, "how about an EE06 like everyone else". The end result was, a 1 metre tripod mast, an EE06 and a Kingray MHW34G amplifier. All cable was RG6Q as requested by me with a 3 way matchmaster splitter. The picture quality on analog was attrotious with much ghosting. The digital quality was about 83% through the set top box. I then attempted to repair the installation. Using the same 1 metre mast with the EE06, I removed the amplifier, replacing it with a MHW34FS. I repositioned the antenna which was positioned too much to the left. End result was 100% digital signal with no dropouts. Didn't bother with the analog as there is not much to gain. My point to this story is "why do some antenna installers with years experience persist on showing arrogance for something they really have no clue about. I have undertaken a Matchmaster course as I was recommended to do by matchmaster. I do installations for family and friends at the current time.

The fact is there are certain installations that do require a 'professional' to do the job. Please make sure that you choose someone with strength meters, especially for digital. Don't fall into the trap of choosing someone who will make you call someone else or fix the job yourself. I must say that I have had Les Field work on my television sets in the past and have always had an excellent job done. There are others as well who you can choose. Also make sure you choose Australian made and tested products. Let us keep our jobs and money and help promote australian products. GME Kingray and Matchmaster have always given me excellent support for their products.

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I would also like to agree with David on the issue of arrogance and sarcasm from antenna installers, especially in Newcastle. I have argued with installers before because they seem to know everything. I live in a location where I can see the Mount Sugarloaf towers from my rooftop clearly to the northwest in Charlestown. However, I was quoted $750.00 for an antenna installation to replace my existing 10 element VHF yagi for Sydney, EE06 Wisi UHF for Newcastle and NBN FM antenna with an amplifier for Sydney. Another quote was for $360.00 to replace it stating I was in a bad area. In the end, I did it myself for about $300.00 and with the MHV44HLG Kingray amplifier turned on the lowest gain for VHF High Band, I am receiving perfect analog reception and digital up to 95% for Sydney. The house is split 4 ways. All local digital and analog is perfect 100%. I was told I would not receive Sydney channels by installers claiming decades of experience. I sit at home and enjoy those great movies on Sydney stations that some Newcastle people miss out on, especially on Sundays when all the local channels are dominated by sport etc. Crisp, clear dropout free digital. I agree that if you have the know how of do it yourself when it comes to antennas, try it, you'll be amazed. I would have to thank people like AlanH for taking the time to give information on this website. I also wish to thank Matchmaster Communications in Punchbowl, Sydney for their excellent products and service. GME for their Kingray products. All products available from good antenna wholesalers and retailers. They helped me to achieve the best pictures for deep fringe installations. Trial is the best way of achieving results. Not just arrogance and words that something won't work when it will. I am a computer technician and have been for the last 15 years. I never quote on something unless I have tried it before and know it works but I never assume it doesn't unless I have tested it. Anything is possible for the electronics world today. Digital television has allowed many people to achieve excellent tv reception when they have put up with grainy pictures for years. The signal is stronger. It can travel for longer periods as opposed to analog which weakens the further it travels. These are facts. I have been told that there are certain areas of Newcastle and Sydney that can receive fringe signals if need be by technicians which have designed the above equipment. This proves that they know more than any installer in the industry. They manufacture the products. They know what they are capable of receiving.

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Les,

I did not notice your December post.

There is no AM transmitters on Mt Sugarloaf, only FM & TV. The top of a mountain is the worst place for an AM transmitter. They need good wet earth mats such as those in the Beresford area.

AlanH

Alan,

My computer has been down for a while and anyway I have been far too busy of late to even look at this site. Looking at the quote above, What on earth are you talking about? There are 6 AM transmitters on Mt.Sugarloaf. These are the vision carriers of the 6 analog TV tranmitters. Glenn has already aluded to this in previous posts - and yes, he was right.

Now, all you have to do is calculate the relationship between these vision carrier frequencies to ascertain the AM interference on SC10 of which I have spoken. And, to repeat, this is in the domain of the diligent antenna installer to prevent this interference happening.

lesf

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I don't doubt that (some) local people have the knowledge and experience required, and I never claimed that. What I commented on was that instead of demonstrating it, they resort to name calling.

If I were having reception problems, I would look here for information. If I were to see posts from someone who seemed to know what they were talking about and was quite helpful, I would probably give them a call.

But instead we get people who seem to have huge egos telling others they are wrong and not contributing anything themselves. Not exactly an attitude that would endear them to potential customers.

And I should add that I have had past experience with one of the "local experts" you mention. He just cut the cable to one antenna to "resolve" a problem, which just created others, and did not tell anyone what he had done, let alone ask first!

David

Just to clear things up & have my right of reply to everyone.

It wasn't me who did the last thing David mentioned.

SteveB thanks for your comments, Port Stephens is behind us we just have to wait & see how it goes, I haven't had any "ducting" problems this year. 95% of all ducting episodes this year have come from the North not the South.

AlanH does post some helpful things in here, but in the past has posted some very incorrect local information & sent people asking for help in the wrong direction that would/did only make their problems worse.

He posts in every forum with similar info & gets the same comments from all the local installers.

He is a broadcast engineer (like SteveB) not an antenna installer. SteveB doesn't "suggest" how people in West Aus. (where AlanH comes from) how they should install their antennas, becasue he doesn't have any local knowledge to do so.

crownms123

Would you tell people in a West Aus. town how to install their antenna systems, what they should be using & where it should be pointing to?

As you have mentioned even experience doesn't mean your going to get it right, you need local knowledge & don't rely on what the theory tells you, as you found out local testing & practice doesn't always match up with the theory.

You also mention about keeping jobs & our money here & promoting Australian products, but you have suggested use of the Wisi EE06 antenna a number of times. Yes it is sold locally by Matchmaster but it's made & imported here from Germany, so your totally going against what you've suggested. If you want an Australian designed, tested & manufactured antenna use the Hills Ultimax 36 antenna (looks the same as the Wisi, has similar tech. specs. but in many installers opinions out performs the Wisi in poor signal areas).

Cheers

GlennP.

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