Premier Tivo and Amplified Attic Antenna

Discussion in 'TiVo Premiere DVRs' started by riverjamie, Feb 10, 2011.

  1. riverjamie

    riverjamie New Member

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    Jan 29, 2011

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    I have two Premier Tivo's in the San Francisco Area, that are hooked up to an Attic antenna. I get most of the local channels I'm after, but one 2-1 KTVU Fox does get down in the high 20-s at times, when it does its freezes or pixulates. So I spoke to Winegard antenna mfg. They suggested to install a Distribution Amplifier HDA-100 which I did, then did a rescan of channels, 2-1, 4-1, 5-1, are gone all together. With zero signal on the meter. But if I bypass the Tivo and go direct into the TV's the channels are okay and strong on the TV's. I spoke to Tivo they said that there might be a compadability issue with using a amplifier with Tivos? So I'm curious is anyone else having these problems with Premier Tivo's and an power amplifier? If your power amplifer is working okay, which mfg and model. Any thoughts?
     
  2. orangeboy

    orangeboy yes, I AM orangeboy!

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    East Moline, IL
    I don't recall where I heard this (TCF member lrhorer, pehaps?), but an amplifier may actually compound the problem. If the signal is relatively poor, and amplifier could amplify the issue. For an analogy, think of a staticky, distant AM radio station. Turning up the volume doesn't make the static go away; it only makes the static louder.

    I'm definitely not saying an amplifier isn't a good idea, but maybe the HDA-100 is a bit too hot @15db?

    Here's a 4 port @7.5db that could be an alternative: http://www.pctstore.com/RF_amplifier_CATV_amp_4_port_amplifier_PCTMA24P_p/pctma24p.htm
    or a 2 port @11.5db: http://www.pctstore.com/RF_amplifier_CATV_amp_2_port_amplifier_PCTMA22P_p/pctma22p.htm

    Introducing a splitter after the amp may tone down the signal, too.
     
  3. riverjamie

    riverjamie New Member

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    Jan 29, 2011
    Thank you for the info. I should've mentioned that there's a 4 set splitter about 30 ft from the power amp, then it goes out to 4 20-30ft runs. It's really wierd, Tivo missing channels, straight TV okay?? First I thought that maybe the signal strength was to hot also but when I look at the Plasma TV it say the hotest channel is only at 70% with 2-1 at 54% so it doesn't seem that the Tivo's are being over loaded. 7-1 comes in with 74 and 11-1 with 86 on Tivo Signal strenght meter, but 2-1,4-1,and 5-1 have a 0 reading?
     
  4. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay TCF Club

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    SF Bay Area
    What happens if you bypass the splitter and the amp into the Tivo?
     
  5. riverjamie

    riverjamie New Member

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    Jan 29, 2011

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    Thanks for replying. I haven't hooked directly to the Tivo yet. But I was thinking to try the same thing just to check to see what the signal would look like. I'm in South San Francisco but more toward Highway 280 so not directly behind San Bruno Mountain. Most of the channels are okay, the issue seems to be with the RF UHF stataions 2-1,4-1,5-1,9-1 the HI VHF 7-1 and 11-1 are okay 75-90 on the meter. 2-1 is the worst, interesting being that they all come from the same tower on Mount Sutro in SF?? What's more interesting that Winegard thought installing the HDA-100 Distribution Amp would help, but it did just the opposite? After reading some other posts on OTA it seems that the Premiers really seem to have a problem with OTA comparied to the HD model? Again the HDTV work just fine with Tivo's bypassed? But both of my Tivos have the same problem with 2-1 especially??
     
  6. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay TCF Club

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    SF Bay Area
    I'm across the bay in Oakland, with a rooftop antenna and all the channels come up near or at 100%. The worst channel for me is 65-1 through 65-3 ION TV, currently its near 100%, but when a storm blew down our antenna, the picture became blockey at times, but the other channels were relatively clear still.

    With digital OTA, you would need a line of sight with the tower and even though we can have a near line of sight, the fog can hinder that but not affect our reception.

    Our antenna is not even amplified and I have a 4 way splitter to the TV, Tivo, etc.

    By the way, you seemed so close to San Bruno, did you feel the explosion from the gas pipeline that day? I had to go outside the door to even see the smoke.
     
  7. riverjamie

    riverjamie New Member

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    Jan 29, 2011
    First regarding the gas fire yes I knew two families that lost their homes. It was about 2 miles away from us.

    Today I hooked up the antenna direct no splitter and amplifier, guess what, again all the RF UHF stations went away??? O signal strenght on 2-1, 4-1, 5-1, 9-1. This really does not make any sense?? But the TV's were still okay? Then I hooked up a 2 way splitter and all the channels came back but still weak with 2-1. Then hooked up the 4 set splitter and every thing was back to where it was, 2-1 still a little weak 30-35, but can drop then starts freezing. All this really makes no sense???
     
  8. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay TCF Club

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    Apr 6, 2000
    SF Bay Area
    This may be a silly question, but what if the antenna was facing the wrong way?
     
  9. riverjamie

    riverjamie New Member

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    Jan 29, 2011
    No question is silly. My background is that I use to repair TV's, VCR's, and install antenna's, about 30yrs ago and have an electrical tech degree. Not trying to be smart about it, just wanted to give my background. So that's why all is just doesn't make much sense?? But yes I raised the antenna as high as it will go and pointed it as close to what I think being in the attic is the best spot. But today I might try to try tweaking it a little with the wife looking at the tivo meter for 2-1 and see what happens to 2-1, hopping not to ruin the other channels. Boy it's been a great week as far as weather in the bay area. Get out and enjoy it.
     
  10. shwru980r

    shwru980r Well-Known Member

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    I would get an antenna rotator. Follow the instructions to calibrate the initial antenna position. Run a power lead so the controller is right next to your TV.

    My experience is that you can find a sweet spot that will work for a while, but as seasons and atmospheric conditions change you may need to adjust the antenna a few degrees. Also, your body acts as part of the antenna while you are touching it. The picture might look good while you are in the attic, but when you leave the attic the reception can change.

    www.tvfool.com will give you the precise azimuth to point your antenna for each channel based on your location.
     
  11. L David Matheny

    L David Matheny Active Member

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    Jan 29, 2011
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    But how do you get the TiVo to rotate the antenna as needed to record this and that when you're not home? Season passes are what TiVo is all about.
     
  12. Davelnlr_

    Davelnlr_ N5GGG

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    Jan 12, 2011
    North...
    It is probably multipath. Tivo Premier tuners hate multipath. Try moving the antenna to another location in attic away from ANYTHING metal including wiring, or best case, outside. Attics attenuate the signal 3 to 6db, and introduce multpath from anything metal in the house.
     
  13. rc60477

    rc60477 New Member

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    Mar 14, 2009
    Yes, I am having sam problem with Amplifiers:

    Channel Master 3410
    Winegard HDA-200

    After you hook up these amplifiers to your between your Antenna and TiVo Premier, you will no longer a "Live TV" signal again. If you remove the amp between Antenna and Tivo premier, "Live TV" works again, but with low signal and pixelation (where I live).
     

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