Special antenna for OTA HD??

smokey982

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 7, 2005
1,988
94
Cleveland, TN (Chattanooga Market)
I have an uncle that just purchased his first HD LCD and has been trying to pick up his locals OTA. He has a very old antenna that he has used for the last 15 years to pick up OTA analog channels and it works fine for analog. Clear picture, no ghosting .

But when he tries that same antenna on his new TV with built in HD tuner, it will not bring in any digital channels. The TV says "the signal is too weak". Antennaweb shows he is only 20 miles from the local towers.

My question is does he need a "newer" or "HD" antenna to bring in the digital channels?
 

Marty43

SatelliteGuys Pro
Feb 18, 2005
171
0
Ogdensburg NY, Winter Haven Fl.
seems like it should work. Many HD channels are on UHF, make sure his antenna picks up UHF. See if the TV has more than one antenna input. My Sony lcd has two antenna inputs one for cable one for OTA. Make sure you are scanning the correct input. Does the new tv pick up the analog stations ok? at 20 miles HD should come in fine. check out this site www.antennaweb.org When I put in your zip it shows only 2 digital stations NBC DT on channel 13 and WB on channel 42

Chattanooga 86
WELF IND 23.n 16
WRCB-TV NBC 3.n 13
WDEF-TV CBS 12.n 47
WDSI-TV FOX 61.n 40
WTVC ABC 9.n 35
WFLI-TV WB 53.n 42
WTCI PBS 45.n 29
However these are other DT stations in Chatt. don't know why they dont show up in antenna.org.
 
Last edited:

mzopinionated

SatelliteGuys Family
Mar 3, 2006
66
0
smokey982 said:
I have an uncle that just purchased his first HD LCD and has been trying to pick up his locals OTA. He has a very old antenna that he has used for the last 15 years to pick up OTA analog channels and it works fine for analog. Clear picture, no ghosting .

But when he tries that same antenna on his new TV with built in HD tuner, it will not bring in any digital channels. The TV says "the signal is too weak". Antennaweb shows he is only 20 miles from the local towers.

My question is does he need a "newer" or "HD" antenna to bring in the digital channels?

I also use one of those old antenna's and it works fine, the problem is if u are not right on the target it will not pick up an HD feed. Analog is fine if u are close but not HD keep pointing in the direction of the towers and you shoud get it with some tweeking.
 

griz_fan

Pub Member / Supporter
Pub Member / Supporter
Jun 13, 2004
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Meridian, Idaho
The big thing to remember is that even though it is now broadcast digitally, HDTV signals are still broadcast on good ol' UHF and VHF. So, any antenna capable of dialing in those in the past will work just fine for HD/digital broadcasts. I'm in agreement with Marty43 on this one, make sure the antenna is cabled up to the right co-ax input and that your uncle has a solid connection between the antenna cable and his TV. Antennaweb.org is also a good point of reference.
Though every situation can be different, in my experience analog has been more dificult to pull in than digital, especially channels 2 through 6. The fact that your uncle has good reception on stations like that suggests to me that he may have used the wrong input for the antenna on his TV.
 

Hall

SatelliteGuys Master
Feb 14, 2004
18,409
3,194
Germantown OH
Just checked your local stations -- I assume he's also in the Cleveland TN area -- and the old analog stations are primarily UHF, so that's good. I was expecting that they were all VHF and he had a VHF-only antenna but now needs UHF.

What kind of cabling is run from the antenna to the receiver ?? It should be RG6, not the old twinlead.

All of the main Chattanooga stations are grouped fairly close together, between 271' and 284'. That's completely doable with most antennas. I'm using zip code 37311, by the way.
 

jdr01930

Pub Member / Supporter
Pub Member / Supporter
Feb 28, 2005
427
3
Gloucester, MA
" What kind of cabling is run from the antenna to the receiver ??"

Should splitters and other connectors between the antenna and the HD tuner be checked for digital compatibility too?

Years ago (before I had dish), i had to switch out my splitters when I went from analog to digital cable. I'm assuming the same would apply to OTA??
 

Bill R

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
364
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Some people that can pick up their UHF analog stations fine have problems picking up their digital UHF stations because some of stations are not broadcasting at full power yet (or have much lower power or different antenna locations) on their new digital stations. Checking http://www.antennaweb.org may help.
 

smokey982

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 7, 2005
1,988
94
Cleveland, TN (Chattanooga Market)
It turns out he was using the wrong antenna input on his TV. But he was also using the old twinlead wire. We were still able to pick up 2 channels with his old setup. He's going this week to purchase some RG-6. Thanks for the help.
 

Jordan420

SatelliteGuys Pro
Nov 20, 2003
545
0
Seattle, WA
There are only 2 stations broadcasting digital in the Cleveland, TN area


* blue - vhf WRCB-DT 3.1 NBC CHATTANOOGA TN 275° 24.0 13
* blue - uhf WFLI-DT 53.1 WB CLEVELAND TN 284° 22.3 42
 

Marty43

SatelliteGuys Pro
Feb 18, 2005
171
0
Ogdensburg NY, Winter Haven Fl.
smokey982 said:
It turns out he was using the wrong antenna input on his TV. But he was also using the old twinlead wire. We were still able to pick up 2 channels with his old setup. He's going this week to purchase some RG-6. Thanks for the help.
Have him get a new adapter --the piece that adapts from the antenna to the RG6, if he is using twin lead he probably does not have one.
 

smokey982

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 7, 2005
1,988
94
Cleveland, TN (Chattanooga Market)
Jordan420 said:
There are only 2 stations broadcasting digital in the Cleveland, TN area


* blue - vhf WRCB-DT 3.1 NBC CHATTANOOGA TN 275° 24.0 13
* blue - uhf WFLI-DT 53.1 WB CLEVELAND TN 284° 22.3 42

Actually, Antennaweb is incorrect. I can receive all of the local networks digital feeds from my location. I'm not sure why it only shows those two.
 

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