Dual Distribution Amplifiers

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Nov 1, 2013
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I'm wanting to expand my OTA antenna to second building. I'm using a Channel Master 8 port DA in the house and was wondering if I could connect a second one in the other building 160' away feeding off the one in the house.
 

primestar31

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I'm wanting to expand my OTA antenna to second building. I'm using a Channel Master 8 port DA in the house and was wondering if I could connect a second one in the other building 160' away feeding off the one in the house.
Sure, try it out and see how it works for you. Make sure you use a good run of RG-6, or even consider RG-11 for a run that far.

It may not work out for you, but you can't know that for sure until you try it.
 

harshness

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May 5, 2007
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A DA is meant to take a good signal on one cable and turn it into about the same level signal on multiple cables. It is not designed to boost the signal for a long journey.

A single adjustable amp off of the existing DA (or maybe a two-way splitter off the antenna down-lead) going to the second building with its own distribution system is really what you need; especially if the second building only has one or two outlets.
 

. Raine

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Try it right off of your existing DA first, if you haven't already. I have a 8 port Channel Master DA setup here that one run off of it is 300' to my parents house next door, been working great for years.
 
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harshness

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My main concern was the possibility of damaging the DAs when linking them.
Because the signal on the outputs of the DA is typically no greater than the input, there's no worry about that.

How many outlets do you expect in the second building?
 

harshness

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Quad shield doesn't help a lot with signal loss as the signal loss is mostly independent of the shielding. Extra shielding is more about avoiding stray signal leaking in (that can lead to a loss in signal quality) where the environment is dense with strong signals.

RG11 cable (fairly expensive) has less loss/foot but it is up to the individual whether or not it is worth the extra money.
 

harshness

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I'll check into some RG11 then. Will ground blocks at each building help reduce lightning damage, or will I need coax surge protectors?
Realistically, you can't even slow down lightning damage. The best you can hope for is to draw off static electricity build-up and that's what the grounding blocks do.

As long as the overall wiring is sound in both buildings, you've done pretty much all that you can. I reason that coax surge protectors may offer some utility in an old-school (coax instead of fiber) cable TV situation where a lightning may travel long distances through the provider's network. Most are only good to less than 1000V where a nearby lightning strike is good for tens of thousands of volts.
 

Wireless Engineer

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Mar 18, 2019
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[one thing to keep in mind here.
Every building has it's own electrical ground reference so any wiring between the two buildings can create a large difference in potential during a power surge or lightning strike.


UOTE="StarScan, post: 4335855, member: 189971"]I'm wanting to expand my OTA antenna to second building. I'm using a Channel Master 8 port DA in the house and was wondering if I could connect a second one in the other building 160' away feeding off the one in the house.[/QUOTE]
 

Wireless Engineer

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Mar 18, 2019
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You can in fact prevent lightning damage since it is done every day at thousands of tower sites and skyscrapers that take firect strikes dozens of times a year.
But running ANY conductor between buildings with their own separate entance panels and ground reference can be dangerous and in most areas a local code violation.
And if the buildings are on different power transformers it gets even worse.
At a minimum all NEC codes must be adhered to.
 

harshness

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May 5, 2007
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You can in fact prevent lightning damage since it is done every day at thousands of tower sites and skyscrapers that take firect strikes dozens of times a year.
That's not really the issue here, but you have to use some common sense about how much such a system may cost. A residential lightning rod system can cost thousands and in this case, the system perhaps has to cover both structures like an umbrella.

My point is that given the gear available to consumers, preventing lightning damage is not economically feasible. It is better to set aside that money for a system replacement or move somewhere where the risk is lower.
 
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