Choppy and buffered picture on several channels all of a sudden

Discussion in 'Over the Air TV By RabbitEars.Info' started by oxonian, Nov 8, 2017.

  1. Hello friends,

    I have been using the Solid Signal Xtreme Signal Long Range HD VHF UHF FM Outdoor TV Antenna (HD8200XL) mounted on my roof (about 30-40 ft high) for OTA channels.

    Here is my TV Fool report

    TV Fool

    Recently, I have been getting choppy audio and video on basic OTA channels like NBC, PBS etc which show up in the green zone in the tv fool report.

    I am wondering, is this an issue with the tv configuration - I have done an auto channel scan several times, or do I need to move the antenna?

    I just have one television connected to this antenna, and use a 2 way splitter, could it be that the splitter is bad? I recently added the splitter about 3 months ago, but there is only one television connected to it.

    It is a 5MHz to 1000MHz 2 way splitter, it says 4db on the out port.

    Does anyone have any idea on what could be the issue(s)??

    Thank you!!

  3. I suppose the only way to figure out whether you need to move your antenna is to move it and see what happens. I'd wager you've got a connection problem, compromised (wet?) cable or a problem with your tuner. If you have some other DTV tuner available to you (like a DTV converter or a small DTV capable TV), I'd try that to pin down whether the problem is with the TV or somewhere else.

    If you only have one tuner connected, you should NOT have a splitter. If you're using the splitter in place of a coupler, you should replace it with a coupler.

    If you are using the splitter to attenuate your signal because your antenna is too powerful (the HD-8200XL is a humongous antenna for 31 LOS miles), you should put a dummy load on the unused leg or use a pad (attenuating device) in place of the splitter.
    oxonian likes this.
  4. What part of the country do you live in? I have to adjust my antenna twice a year. Once in late Spring and once in Fall (now). Has to do with changes in temperature and foliage I figure. It is definitely possible that your splitter has failed as well but as harshness said you really dont need one.
    oxonian likes this.
  5. harshness comfortably_numb

    I appreciate your help and feedback

    harshness I replaced the splitter with the coupler that I originally had and the signal seems better!!

    So, now my question is, assuming this solves the do I add more televisions in the future? I have the coaxial cables run, but I will need some way to connect multiple coaxial cables to the single cable coming in from the antenna...would I not use a splitter?

    comfortably_numb I am in the Houston, TX area. What is the best way to check if my antenna is pointing in the right direction? Just use the compass on the iphone for example?

    What part of the antenna needs to point, is there like a cap or something on the antenna, there must be some form of marker?

    Do I need to point it at 163 degrees using the iphone compass?

    SORRY for the stupid questions, I am new to this and cannot really afford a subscription plan right now

    Thank you!!
  6. I’m feeding 3 TV’s using this:

    Just plug your antenna coax into that, then you can add up to 4 TV’s. Boom, free TV all over the house! ;)
    oxonian likes this.
  7. Get one of these powered splitters, as they are the best choice for your situation of splitting off to multiple tv's:

    oxonian likes this.
  8. #7 boba, Nov 8, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2017
    Splitter 4dB, in decibel notation 3dB doubles or halves the signal strength so at 4dB you are getting less than half the captured signal out to the TV set.

    TV antenna, The narrow end of the antenna is the front and should be pointed at the broadcast towers.

    Houston area is flat so there is little expected signal loss. The Solid Signal knock off of the Winegard 8200 is a suspect because at 32 miles that antenna should be overkill. The Winegard 8200 is a strong deep fringe antenna and should be overkill. If this link works it should take you to 75mile rated antennas at reasonable prices.
    Pictures of your 8200 would be nice I suspect a connection problem
    oxonian likes this.
  9. thank you

    comfortably_numb primestar31 I do not see any link, product etc in your reply, it seems blank...can you please try again?

    I am interested in knowing which splitter you guys are using

  10. You don't want a splitter to add more TV's, you need a distribution amplifier. I use a Channel Master CM3418-8, which has 8 ports, works great. They make units with less ports, if you don't need that many.
  11. You have to temporarily turn OFF your ad blocker here to see those links. Then hit Refresh. After you are done, you can turn it back on again. Add the https www stuff to the front of this link:
    oxonian and comfortably_numb like this.
  12. You would use a splitter but not until you are actually connecting the additional tuners and then only using a splitter that meets the immediate need for outputs. Any outputs/outlets that you don't use should be equipped with a dummy load.

    You wouldn't plumb a water line and not cap a pipe that you weren't using yet.
    Imagine that the antenna is an arrowhead and that arrow needs to point at the TV towers (or somewhere in between them all).

    Using a compass only gets you to a starting point. From there you need to observe the signal level and sweep back and forth until it reaches its highest point. Once you've done that, then you change to a different channel and do it again until you've found the "average" best direction. With such a large antenna, you will need to be more diligent as the antenna has a narrower "beam" than a smaller antenna. It is designed for long range (>60 miles) sniper work.
    oxonian likes this.
  13. Thank you harshness primestar31 boba comfortably_numb Raine

    Although the choppiness/lag/buffer whatever you want to call it has improved since I removed the splitter and put the coupler back on - I am just using one television at this point, it is still a bit choppy/laggy/buffering

    The television I am using is pretty new, it is a 55inch or so smart tv, so I would think the tuner is ok...I can try the antenna with another newer tv I have.

    However, I am wondering if I should re run the coaxial wire from the antenna in the roof to the point where it meets the other cable that connects to the tv?

    Maybe the cable from the roof got wet, damaged, we had lot of rains here in the Houston area this year.

    If so, what is the best type of cable that you recommend? Do I just go to the Hom* Dep** and pick up any coaxial cable, or is there a better option?

    If I am running new cable, I do not know if I can, I will have to check, then I might as will run a good quality one.

  14. If your signal is too strong, just turn the antenna 90 degrees away from the transmitters and see if the signal improves.
    oxonian likes this.
  15. The RG6 that they sell at most home improvement stores should be fine for OTA use. The stuff they sell at Home Depot is good enough for satellite use.

    If you're going to buy cable in bulk and put your own fittings on, you should study that subject carefully before you do anything else. It is a discipline in itself and involves some special tools and techniques to do it correctly. Terminating cable is easy if you learn how to do it correctly.

    General tip for getting help in Internet forums:

    Don't start somewhere in the middle with where your project broke down; begin with telling us some basic background (this part you did fairly well) and then what you want to end up with (I get the feeling you're trying to whole-home wire but you said you had just one TV).

    It is usually much easier to look at the whole project rather than just hacking through individual problems that may have been avoided by a different approach in the first place. Ask about components before you buy them. You'll save a lot of time and effort doing the research up front rather than tilting at windmills that you created for yourself.
    primestar31 and oxonian like this.
  16. The beamwidth of the HD-8200 is such that it may be pretty much "blind" at 90 degrees.
    oxonian likes this.
  17. thank you harshness navychop

    I am going to try to check the position of the antenna, when I get someone to help me.

    Can anyone who can better comprehend the tvfool report (attached in the first post) tell me what approximate degree or range the transmitter should be pointing at?

    Is it like 168 degrees or so on the compass on my iPhone?

    Thank you!1
  18. If not 90, maybe 45.
  19. The transmitter is the tower the station uses to broadcast a signal to you. General statement is it broadcasts a 360 degree signal from it's location. From your street address you would point the front of the antenna 163 degrees so it is aimed at the broadcast tower. At 30 miles magnetic or true doesn't matter either will be close enough to fine tune from.
    Pictures or verbal description of the outside mounting may be helpful if you are 30-40 ft above ground level.
  20. With Harvey occurring about the time your problems started that 30" of rain could be your problem or a contributer.
  21. From the Tvfool home page run a maps report (start maps) for your address. Then change to map view to satellite and zoom in to your house. Google maps may change to 3D view as you zoom in, change it back to 2D with the options in the bottom corner of the map. Move the location pin the exact location of your antenna and check the box for “show line pointing to each transmitter”. Now back out a little and look for landmarks to point your antenna to match the green lines, trees, utility poles, street signs, etc.
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