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Guide to TV antenna installation

HD Stacker Dual Band Reception

Dear Denny,

I hope you can help me. I just purchased and installed a antennas direct db8 antenna on the roof of my 2 story home near sycamore, IL. It's about 30 feet above ground level. I installed a rotor so the antenna can be aimed either at chicago or rockford. All of the channels come in good except for cbs from chicago (2.1) and nbc from rockford (13.1). The cbs channel rarely comes in at all and the picture on nbc from rockford breaks up periodically and the sound goes in and out. I've tried the troubleshooting tips you have on your website and still have the same problem. I would appreciate any input you may have and am willing to purchase from you whatever you think will help. My address is _____________________________ sycamore, il. 60178.

Will raising the antenna higher help? Do i need a bigger preamplifier? Will your hd stacker work? I don't understand why all of the other channels come in good.

Looking forward to your reply.

Thanks,
Robert

Hello Robert,

There is one thing the two problem stations have in common. Both stations broadcast a VHF TV signal. TV signals are broken down into two primary frequency bands VHF (very high frequency channels) and UHF (ultra high frequency). The size and shape of the antenna design determines which frequencies the antenna will receive. The DB8 antenna is designed primarily to receive UHF TV signals and both stations WBBM 2.1 and WREX 13.1 are broadcasting a VHF signal. My recommendation is to replace the antenna with an antenna designed to receive both VHF and UHF signals. The VHF signals are channels 2-13 and UHF are 14 and up. The DB8 antenna is a very good antenna when used for UHF reception. There are a handful of areas in the Country where all of the signals are UHF making the DB8 a very good choice.

Yes, the HD Stacker antenna is likely the solution or any quality long range antenna that is designed to receive both VHF and UHF signals. The Winegard HD 7697P would also be a good choice. As long as the antenna is designed for VHF and UHF reception you should be okay.

I'm confident switching out antennas will solve the problem. If you decide to replace the DB8 please let me know the results.

Best regards,
Denny

Additional Information about dual band TV reception.

In 2006 most TV stations in the U.S began broadcasting digital signals in addition to the original analog signal. This meant TV stations had to broadcast both analog and digital signals at the same time using one channel for each. This period marked the beginning of the "digital transition". The FCC plan had the TV stations broadcasting both digital and analog signals for 3 years turning off the analog signals in 2009 completing the "digital transition"

With each TV station now using two channels one for analog and one for digital the available broadcast frequency space was limited. Because of channel overcrowding nearly every new digital channel in the Country had to be assigned to the UHF frequency band because most VHF channels were occupied broadcasting the departing analog signals. 

This new digital reception was new to all of us in the business and at the time there wasn't a lot of information available. Because of this I along with others thought all digital signals were UHF and were to remain that way. This was significant because it meant the consumer could now use smaller less obtrusive UHF antennas to receive the new digital signals. Because of my ignorance on the subject I began promoting the Channel Master 4228 UHF antenna as a suitable antenna for long range digital reception.

New smaller UHF antenna designs began flooding the market. Dealers and manufactures started calling UHF antennas "HDTV Antennas" in hopes of selling more antennas. It was about this time when I received an email from Ken Nist who publishes the website HDTV Primer. He explained to me that promoting the 4228 UHF antenna or any UHF antenna for digital HDTV reception was misleading and deceptive. He directed me to the FCC web page called "Final Channel Destination". Displayed on this page were the analog and digital channel numbers assigned to every TV station in the U.S. The last column on the page called "Final Channel Destnation" listed the final digital channel number each station would have when the transition was completed in 2009 and the analog signals were turned off. I was surprised to find out how many TV station would be returning to VHF.

On June 12th 2009 the analog signals were shut down for good allowing about 35% of the TV stations that had previously broadcast UHF digital HD signals to return to a recently (analog vacated) VHF channel. With few exceptions nearly every area of the U.S. has VHF TV signals.

The DB8 antenna specifications provided by the manufacturer clearly state the antenna is designed for UHF TV reception. Unfortunately there are those less honest people in the antenna business who still promote UHF antennas as HDTV antennas and do not state for UHF reception only. 

HD Stacker Details

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