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Old 10-10-2018, 09:12 AM   #1
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TV Antenna

Any suggestions on the best TV antenna to purchase?
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Old 10-10-2018, 09:51 AM   #2
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I’ve had the best results with a cheaper Amplified home interior flat style, much better the the crazy expensive “marine” style.

https://www.bestreviews.guide/indoor...8aAmdNEALw_wcB
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Old 10-10-2018, 11:49 AM   #3
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Our boat came with a 10" Glomex, and it worked pretty well. Recently I "upgraded" to the new 14" Glomex, and saw a slight bit of improvement. (I didn't notice it being "crazy expensive" but it was certainly more than $14.95... but wait, act now and we'll send you 2 count 'em TWO just pay extra shipping and handling.)

Can't say how that might compare to other mounted TV antennas. I've not had much luck with home-style antennas, partly because we're usually not at all close to transmitters, partly because any line-of-sight signals are usually blocked anyway, and partly because I didn't mount them as high as our hardtop mount (about 18' off the water).

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Old 10-10-2018, 12:10 PM   #4
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I'm very happy with a six year old Glomex (14" ?) With amplifier. Mounted on mast about 17' above water line.
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Old 10-10-2018, 12:38 PM   #5
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I have a Glomex that came with the boat and has never worked.

I've looked into some of the high end units like the Majestic UFO X which a friend has and absolutely loves it. It has some great reviews, but a few where the customer did not get support on a failed unit. So I called them and talked to an idiot that knew nothing provided no help and said that she might be able to have someone call me back.... with that kind of service, you couldn't pay me to buy it.

So, I'm shopping, too. Perhaps a cheapy that when fails, just throw it away and buy another.

Have no clue what to get so comments appreciated too.
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Old 10-10-2018, 01:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seevee View Post
....... So I called them and talked to an idiot that knew nothing provided no help and said that she might be able to have someone call me back.... with that kind of service, you couldn't pay me to buy it.
Were you talking to technical support, sales, or the receptionist? Did you ask to escalate or take them up on the offer of a follow-up?
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Old 10-10-2018, 02:02 PM   #7
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My Shakespeare TVantenna is noticeably better than tbe cheap RCA, tape and plastic sheet type antennas..... probably because the amplifier looks noticeably better.

Home type ones I am sure can be as good, but only if the amplifier is up to the same quality.
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Old 10-10-2018, 02:52 PM   #8
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I have a Glomex that came with the boat and has never worked.

Have no clue what to get so comments appreciated too.

FWIW, before I changed to the 14" Glomex, I had some useful back-and-forth with their tech guy via e-mail. What dB gain I should be seeing, what gain to expect with the new one, whether I needed a new amplifier too, or not, how to insert a new A/B switch into the system if necessary, better UHF reception after the HD switchover, vertically polarized signals, etc. Very helpful.

I was actually trying to figure out why I couldn't get very consistent reception in Charleston, given broadcast stations there were closer to us than almost all of the "local" broadcasters are here at home. (Turns out it was likely more about interference with all the sailboat masts around us down there...)

As we talked through it, it became apparent it would be an easy switch for me, no new COAX run required, no new mount base and so forth... just off with the old, on with the new... so I thought I'd give it a go.

FWIW, I also used these sites -- both before and after the change -- to learn more about the details behind why I can or cannot see some stations from our home marina:

TV Fool
https://www.fcc.gov/media/engineering/dtvmaps

At least I came to understand more about why our reception is what it is. (I have some background in radio theory; just didn't know details about the various TV transmitters in a given area and what that means relative to where we are at any given time.)

Anyway, after looking inside the old one, turns out, there's not much that could go wrong with the antenna itself (although its not impossible). That's probably the same with Shakespeare and other various brands, too. Seemed more likely that if I were to be having a problem, it would be in the COAX, or the various connectors, the several splitters, or the amplifier.

What I'm leading to is that you might try a test. Hook your Glomex directly to your TV, see what happens. Then connect it directly to your amplifier and then to the TV, and see if the gain control adds anything. (If you don't have it, there's a nifty tool they supply to connect the COAX inside their hollow mount tube if you need to put it back together afterwards.)

I'm thinking you might get lucky and find that the problem isn't the antenna but somewhere else in your system... and maybe relatively easily correctable without a new antenna. And if there is a problem somewhere that not with the antenna, just replacing the antenna with another (no matter the brand or type) maybe won't improve anything anyway.

-Chris
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Old 10-10-2018, 03:30 PM   #9
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I use this fancy antenna setup for doing the remote anchorages of the TennTom. This $10 special, not including the scrub brush, pulls in 6 to 14 hdtv stations. I may work on a mast mount, nah got to stay flexible.
Uploaded vertical photos, but ???
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Old 10-10-2018, 04:49 PM   #10
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I had great success with the Majestic UFO X on my last boat. Small and powerful.
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Old 10-10-2018, 04:58 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiDHo View Post
I use this fancy antenna setup for doing the remote anchorages of the TennTom. This $10 special, not including the scrub brush, pulls in 6 to 14 hdtv stations. I may work on a mast mount, nah got to stay flexible.
Uploaded vertical photos, but ???
That's fine and I'm sure it picks up better than a omni-directional type antenna ...as long as it's pointed at the transmitter tower. Like all types of antennas, bigger is better so the biggest Shakespeare TV antenna model 3019 is what I have and it has always picked up stations where they where there's a signal .
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Old 10-10-2018, 05:08 PM   #12
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I had great success with the Majestic UFO X on my last boat. Small and powerful.
Were you located in VA Beach? There's a ton of towers there so a UFO no doubt worked fine. They work fine up the Bay here too if they're on top of a sailboat mast but we're in a fringe area where we are and on my boat a small UFO just wont cut it 15' above sea level. I can ,most of the time, pick up stations here with the 19" shakespeare I have but not always because the signal is just too darn weak. When I motor directly out in the bay I can get the Norfolk & VA Beach stations (40-50 miles away) but rarely at my dock because of the trees.
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Old 10-10-2018, 06:34 PM   #13
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I've had one of the Digital Yacht DTV100 with amp for a year or better.
https://digitalyachtamerica.com/product/dtv100/
Amplifier has a power button so if you're saving watts there's that feature.
Also has an FM radio antenna output.
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Old 10-10-2018, 07:17 PM   #14
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I got one of these on ebay. I think they're lying about the 300 mile range. But depending on antenna height on both ends, it brings in TV offshore. $10 inc. shipping. Near Astoria I get about 20 channels, 4 are the same PBS. 25 miles offshore 4-6 channels in the PNW.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/TV-Digital-...q1hN:rk:9:pf:0
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Old 10-10-2018, 08:54 PM   #15
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Purchased a similar Antenna, not sure about the range but picked up 20+ HD channels and worked fine, used it in the aft cabin that wasnít hooked up to the Shakespeare antenna. Canít beat the price, just isnít as tidy.
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Old 10-10-2018, 10:27 PM   #16
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Our has a glomex with amplifier.
Need to retune whenever we move more than a few miles but generally it seems to pull in its fair share of channels
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Old 10-11-2018, 07:04 AM   #17
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I think they're lying about the 300 mile range.

Heh. Yeah, that's a crock.

The TVFool and FCC tools came in handy for me (though they're not perfect, lots of errors and omissions), so I can also compare actual RFs to the number of digital channels at various locations. I think in our home slip we get something like 8 or maybe 9 RFs, and that happens to mean about 30 digital channels. Since the antenna only knows RF, doesn't know squat about digital channels, it made slightly more sense for me to be comparing dB and gain at the RF level -- i.e., without regard to the number of digital channels present.

It's also slightly useful to know where those channels are coming from in the RF spectrum. Many of what were logical VHF channels, especially the LVHF channels, are now in the UHF spectrum... even if the TV tuner says channel 4 or 6 or whatever. One symptom is that a 17 dB LVHF signal may or may not resolve in our TV tuners, whereas a 17 dB UHF signal usually seems to resolve and to stay stable.

Boomerang mentions a 19" Shakespeare antenna, and I'd forgotten about seeing that back when I was talking to the Glomex guy. Sure enough, I'd likely assume that would receive more signals better further than a smaller diameter disc. I didn't happen to have clearance for anything larger than 14" in the location where my current mount base lives, and the Shakespeare mount system is different from the Glomex system anyway (I think)... so that just would have been too much work for not enough gain (that's a pun)... given TV isn't a really high priority for us. But it does seem like a decent option for folks who have freedom to choose.

-Chris
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Old 10-11-2018, 01:05 PM   #18
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Boomerang - Yes we are in Virginia Beach and do get great reception. We had this antenna for four years on our previous boat and it did very well everywhere we went. Look at the gain on the various antennas and that will be a useful piece of info. I'm sure some of the others work well too but I know this one does. Good Luck.
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Old 10-15-2018, 02:06 PM   #19
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Any suggestions on the best TV antenna to purchase?

What's a TV?
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Old 10-15-2018, 02:56 PM   #20
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Here in Ireland and Europe and I spent a freekin fortune on super duper antennae's, amplifiers, cables and fittings and still the admiral grumbling for patchy TV
Now we use Google Chromecast via streaming and find it to do the job. If we get no internet then we simply put our feet up with a book.
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