Missing OTA Channels?

Lone Gunman

Lone Gunman

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I've had one of [url=https://www.ebay.com/itm/AntennaCraft-U8000-8-Bay-UHF-Outdoor-Antenna-HDTV-Bowtie-34-Electronic-Elements-/271417338061] THESE [/url] type antennas on a mast in a tripod on the roof of my house now since back when digital TV was first made available. Here is a list of the channels I was getting up until recently:

7.1-3 WDBJ CBS
10.1-3 WSLS NBC
13.1-4 WSET ABC
21.1-4 WWCW Fox
27.1-4 WFXR Fox
29/1-3 WVIR NBC
38.1-6 WPXR ION
43.1 HOPE NOW

Now, I'm no longer able to get 29, 38 or 43 and this is with the coax connected directly from the antenna to the TV with NO splitters/switches etc in the circuit. The RG6 coax run from antenna to TV is about 35ft and I'm using solid copper center conductor coax, NOT copper plated steel center conductor, if that matters.

I read where some of the digital station stuff had changed recently and I'm wondering if this could be the reason for the missing channels?

Another thing I was wondering about is, do these type of OTA antennas "wear out" and have to be replaced over time??

Thanks
 
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comfortably_numb

comfortably_numb

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I've had one of THESE type antennas on a mast in a tripod on the roof of my house now since back when digital TV was first made available. Here is a list of the channels I was getting up until recently:

7.1-3 WDBJ CBS
10.1-3 WSLS NBC
13.1-4 WSET ABC
21.1-4 WWCW Fox
27.1-4 WFXR Fox
29/1-3 WVIR NBC
38.1-6 WPXR ION
43.1 HOPE NOW

Now, I'm no longer able to get 29, 38 or 43 and this is with the coax connected directly from the antenna to the TV with NO splitters/switches etc in the circuit. The RG6 coax run from antenna to TV is about 35ft and I'm using solid copper center conductor coax, NOT copper plated steel center conductor, if that matters.

I read where some of the digital station stuff had changed recently and I'm wondering if this could be the reason for the missing channels?

Another thing I was wondering about is, do these type of OTA antennas "wear out" and have to be replaced over time??

Thanks

Are you using a preamp?
 
spongella

spongella

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May 12, 2012
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There was a recent "repacking" of channels so that may have affected your reception. Here we were affected though minimally so I just re-scanned via the TV's software. As for antennas "wearing out" I just replaced a Chinese import antenna that I had mounted on the chimney for several years because of pixielation that was creeping up. In addition the rotor did not work anymore.

A autopsy of the deceased antenna ( :) ) showed cracking of some plastic standoffs and more importantly cracked RG/6 coax, which was surprising. Perhaps it being near the chimney (for a coal stove no less) was responsible for the degradation, along with the UV rays. Definitely was "worn out."
 
FTA4PA

FTA4PA

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I've had one of THESE type antennas on a mast in a tripod on the roof of my house now since back when digital TV was first made available. Here is a list of the channels I was getting up until recently:

7.1-3 WDBJ CBS
10.1-3 WSLS NBC
13.1-4 WSET ABC
21.1-4 WWCW Fox
27.1-4 WFXR Fox
29/1-3 WVIR NBC
38.1-6 WPXR ION
43.1 HOPE NOW

Now, I'm no longer able to get 29, 38 or 43 and this is with the coax connected directly from the antenna to the TV with NO splitters/switches etc in the circuit. The RG6 coax run from antenna to TV is about 35ft and I'm using solid copper center conductor coax, NOT copper plated steel center conductor, if that matters.

I read where some of the digital station stuff had changed recently and I'm wondering if this could be the reason for the missing channels?

Another thing I was wondering about is, do these type of OTA antennas "wear out" and have to be replaced over time??

Thanks
Have you done a rescan? Info indicates WVIR is to move from RF 32 to RF 2 and WPXR is to move from RF 36 to RF 27. Perhaps they have moved or are temporarily channel sharing with another broadcaster? Our local PBS channel (WVIA 44) sold their spectrum and is now channel sharing with WNEP 16. All those channels now appear under RF 50 (soon to moving to RF 16). Isn't the spectrum sale and repack great! :confused:
 
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Lone Gunman

Lone Gunman

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Have you done a rescan? Info indicates WVIR is to move from RF 32 to RF 2 and WPXR is to move from RF 36 to RF 27. Perhaps they have moved or are temporarily channel sharing with another broadcaster? Our local PBS channel (WVIA 44) sold their spectrum and is now channel sharing with WNEP 16. All those channels now appear under RF 50 (soon to moving to RF 16). Isn't the spectrum sale and repack great! :confused:

No, there's no preamp in the system............ yet. but I see someone has a couple for sale up in the classified section, which actually started this thread.

Yup, I've done a rescan several times and also been on the roof (which I hate to do at 72 years old) and rotated the antenna to try to peak the signal with no luck on the missing channels.

As for the channels moving..................I had seen some info that this was happening a while back but I don't understand how it works and whether or not the lost channels were because of something like that. Having said that, if they are still broadcasting from the same towers one would "assume" that a rescan would bring them back in with new channel numbers?? Yes/No??

And while we're discussing OTA stuff, who makes the best splitters? I've got two other TVs that aren't connected to the OTA antenna right now but I want to hook those back up when the current problem is resolved. Not much current review info available for the one's I've been able to find on the internet with most of it dated back in 2006/09?
 
comfortably_numb

comfortably_numb

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No, there's no preamp in the system............ yet. but I see someone has a couple for sale up in the classified section, which actually started this thread.

Yup, I've done a rescan several times and also been on the roof (which I hate to do at 72 years old) and rotated the antenna to try to peak the signal with no luck on the missing channels.

As for the channels moving..................I had seen some info that this was happening a while back but I don't understand how it works and whether or not the lost channels were because of something like that. Having said that, if they are still broadcasting from the same towers one would "assume" that a rescan would bring them back in with new channel numbers?? Yes/No??

And while we're discussing OTA stuff, who makes the best splitters? I've got two other TVs that aren't connected to the OTA antenna right now but I want to hook those back up when the current problem is resolved. Not much current review info available for the one's I've been able to find on the internet with most of it dated back in 2006/09?

The seller was me; they are distro amps (different from a preamp)

Can you post your www.tvfool.com report?

Rocketfish makes good splitters; you can get them at Best Buy.
 
Trip

Trip

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Nothing has moved yet, so that's not your issue.

Check that your connections are good and that your antenna hasn't been damaged in any way. There are so few variables here that it's almost certainly one of those things.

- Trip
 
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harshness

harshness

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There was a recent "repacking" of channels so that may have affected your reception.
There has been no formal repacking of channels. There have been some channels that have been forced to go off the air or buddy up with other stations but that's a result of the station selling its channel or not qualifying for a new channel. Phase 1 of the official repack completes in the CONUS in late November. Puerto Rico and USVI will do their repack in June or so.

Either way, a rescan is necessary to see what's available and what isn't.
 
harshness

harshness

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Going forward, WVIR is moving to RF 2 so your antenna isn't going to work there (assuming that you really need another NBC affiliate). It seems pretty likely that WSET will also be problematic after the repack (RF 7) with a UHF-only antenna.

Your OTA signal situation is pretty ugly with all those edges.
 
P

pamajestic

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Good chance there is water damage. I would start by replacing the balun and if you have enough cable at the antenna cut off a few inches and install a new connector. I was never impressed with the baluns that shipped with AntennaCraft.
 
Trip

Trip

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There has been no formal repacking of channels. There have been some channels that have been forced to go off the air or buddy up with other stations but that's a result of the station selling its channel or not qualifying for a new channel. Phase 1 of the official repack completes in the CONUS in late November. Puerto Rico and USVI will do their repack in June or so.

Either way, a rescan is necessary to see what's available and what isn't.

As I indicated, no changes have occurred yet. My parents live in that market, I would be the first to know.

Going forward, WVIR is moving to RF 2 so your antenna isn't going to work there (assuming that you really need another NBC affiliate). It seems pretty likely that WSET will also be problematic after the repack (RF 7) with a UHF-only antenna.

WSET is already on 13 and is being repacked to 7 (and increasing power from 28.7 kW to 40 kW in the process), so there's not a significant change there. WBRA, the market's PBS, is already on 3 and has an atrocious signal.

- Trip
 
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harshness

harshness

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WSET is already on 13 and is being repacked to 7 (and increasing power from 28.7 kW to 40 kW in the process), so there's not a significant change there.
When it does change, increasing the power on a lower channel should be a significant change.
WBRA, the market's PBS, is already on 3 and has an atrocious signal.
I was thinking about that, but the TS has a nearer one-edge option to getting PBS from WHTJ that will remain well into the UHF range (not that I encourage the use of UHF-only antennas).
 
Trip

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My experience is that WHTJ's signal underperforms predictions to the south. I'm not entirely clear on why that is, but it could be that the antenna is side-mounted on the north side of the tower. I'll be interested to see if the new channel 26 antenna (with more power, but still side-mounted I think) changes that.

But in any case, I suspect our OP is watching PBS via one of the FTA satellite feeds and that PBS is probably not a major concern. He can correct me if I'm wrong.

- Trip
 
Lone Gunman

Lone Gunman

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But in any case, I suspect our OP is watching PBS via one of the FTA satellite feeds and that PBS is probably not a major concern. He can correct me if I'm wrong.

- Trip

That is correct. The only PBS I ever watch is on 125w and I watch very little of that.
 
Lone Gunman

Lone Gunman

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Good chance there is water damage. I would start by replacing the balun and if you have enough cable at the antenna cut off a few inches and install a new connector. I was never impressed with the baluns that shipped with AntennaCraft.

OK, after a google search on balun I think I have an idea of what you are talking about. On my antenna there is a black box about 2 inches square and 3/4 inch thick that is mounted on the antenna and the coax fastens to that. So where will I find one of those?
 
navychop

navychop

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Sounds like a balun, but most I’ve seen are round, about as thick as a cigar and half as long.
 
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