Best TV antenna for Chicago HDTV reception
Hi Denny & Rhonda-Great Website!
I live in Joliet Il. and have two HDTV's. I currently use indoor rabbit ear antennas for my reception. Some of the Chicago stations come in great, others not so good (in and out) and a couple (2.2 CBS not at all. My address is _________ St. Joliet 60431. What TV antenna would you recommend for me. I would prefer an indoor antenna but if I have to install one outdoors that's ok. I just want to get good reception on all of the Chicago HD channels so I can shut my cable off.
I read Rhonda's page about TV antenna, cable or satellite >. My wife Gina and I decided to try her suggestion and keep track of our viewing habits. We did this for two weeks and to our surprise we found that the majority of the time we were watching free TV and paying for it. All I want is good consistent reception.
Thanks for all of your help,
Greg and Gina ________
________ Street Joliet, Il. 60431
Greetings Greg and Gina,
Digital/HDTV reception can be a little tricky in the Chicago area if you don't choose the proper antenna. I wish I could recommend a simple indoor antenna for you but we are receiving negative reports from across the Country from people who are using all types of indoor antennas for their digital/HDTV reception. The reception problems are very similar to yours stating the digital picture goes in and out. Especially on VHF signal channels such as CBS 2.1. Many report that some days the reception is good and other days it is not. Or every time someone walks around the room or a car passes by the signal goes in and out.
The absolute best choice for your location for consistent quality digital/HDTV reception is the EZ HD antenna > This antenna is designed to receive all of the VHF and UHF signals. Along with the antenna I suggest the Winegard LNA 200 antenna preamplifier >. We have enjoyed excellent success with this combination throughout the Chicago area.
All of the Chicago TV transmitters are to your Northeast at a distance of just under 40 miles. With few exceptions we have found the EZ HD antenna provide consistent quality digital/HDTV reception in about a 45 mile radius of the Chicago TV transmitters.
To receive all of the Chicago area stations the antenna can be installed in a stationary position with the narrow end of the antenna pointing Northeast. For the best results the antenna should be installed above any nearby roof lines if possible.
One other note, The EZ HD is not a cheap flimsy antenna. It is of very high quality and will provide you with many years of service.
If I can assist you further please don't hesitate to contact me.
Denny, Thanks for the great info. I have a couple more questions before I order.
I'm a little confused about the preamplifier, do I need a separate cable to get power to the preamplifier?
Also, I'm thinking I would like to use the J-pole mount, is this a good choice? I would like to use the antenna for both HDTV's where does the splitter go? I will order as soon as I figure out everything I need.
You're welcome Greg. The preamplifier does not require a separate power cable. Preamplifier are a two part unit, the mast mounted amplifier and the power supply. The mast mounted portion mounts just below the antenna and the power supply is located indoors and requires an electrical outlet. The power supply included with the preamplifier sends low voltage electricity up the coax cable to power the amplifier. We have a page called preamplifier installation > that explains how to install a preamplifier.
The installation would go like this. Run a short piece of coax cable from the antenna output to the mast mounted preamplifier input. We offer a 2.5 foot cable on our coax cable page for this purpose. From the preamplifier output run coax to the ground block that you should install on the coax cable just before it enters your home. From the ground block run coax to the power supply input labeled Ant. From the power supply output labeled TV run coax to a 2 way signal splitter and from the splitter outputs to the TV's. Next a ground wire should be ran from the ground block to a suitable ground such as a ground rod. A ground wire should also be ran from the antenna mount/mast to a ground. That's it.
I think the J-pole mount is an excellent choice for this antenna, as long as the antenna can be pointed Northeast.
Let me know how everything turns out.
I wanted to update you on my installation and reception. The installation went off without a hitch except I didn't get very good reception at first. I went back through everything and found I had connected the coax cable to the wrong connection on the power supply. When I got that right everything came in perfect on both TV's. We have not noticed the picture going in out at all. I want to thank you for all of your help. I will certainly recommend your service to anyone interested in a TV antenna.
Thank you from the ______ Family.
Installing a TV antenna tripod
I would like to purchase a tripod and a tv antenna. I'm a little hesitant to put anything on my roof. Can you tell me how to install a tripod, and do you ever have problems with wind or leaks. By the way our local ABC TV station has your article HDTV antenna fact or fiction on their website, that's how I found you. Frank
Good Question, I have installed just over 2,000 tv antenna tripods over the past 18 years. To date I have never and I repeat never have I received a complaint. The trick is proper installation.
Using a 5 foot tripop >. The first step is to find your roof rafters using a stud finder. Locate two studs with one stud in between on one side of the peak. On the other side of the peak locate the the stud in between the two studs you found on the opposite side. Mark the center of all three studs, chalk works good. Next place the roof sealing pads (included with our tripods) on the bottom of each tripod leg platform. Position each leg directly over each stud you previously marked. Make sure you are centered over each stud and press each leg firmly onto the roof. Caution: It will be difficult to move the tripod mount after this step. Using a drill bit drill a hole slightly smaller than the lag screws (lag screws included). Drill the holes in the outside two holes in the leg platforms through the shingles and into the 2X4 rafters (for a total of six). This procedure is important to avoid cracking and splitting of the plywood and rafter. The last step is installing the lag screws. As you tighten each leg down the sealing materiel will ooz out creating a waterproof seal. You have just installed a tripod that will outlast your roof shingles. Important: This procedure only works with the 5 foot tripod. The 3 foot tripod will not line up to your roof rafters. Only use 3 foot tripods with small antennas 80 inches or less or the MS 2000 round antenna. Also if your home is older and has roof planks instead of plywood, as many of the older farm houses have in our area, finding the studs will not be necessary. We have a page called, Installing a Tripod mount > that provides a step by step guide to proper installation.
The article you referred to HDTV Fact or Fiction > is now published in over 300 locations on the internet.
Do it yourself TV antenna
I'm looking for a DIY tv antenna (you know do it yourself tv antenna). Which one do you think would be the easiest for me to put together and install? Bonnie
The EZ HD antenna > is probably the easiest to assemble. However, you should determine if it's the right antenna for your location. If you submit a TV antenna recommendation form > I can determine which antenna is best fir the location.
If you have any difficulties when assembling the antenna just let me know and I can help.
Indoor TV Antenna
I live in downtown Detroit and am in need of an antenna. I used to have a roof antenna, but someone else apparently needed it more than me!
Please advise on what may meet my needs.
For your situation an antenna for indoor use I would consider is the omnidirectional antenna >. This antenna receives signal in all directions and is used indoors frequently. If you have an attic you can mount this antenna that would be great.
Remember you can return any of the antennas you purchase and try.
Feel free to contact us for any further questions you may have.
Omnidirectional Rotorfree Antenna installation height
What is the minimum height a omnidirectional antenna should be mounted ...
With the omnidirectional antenna (like any other tv antenna) we recommend that the antenna is over your roof top. The rule for any antenna is the higher the better in most cases. Some people put it in the attic and are satisfied.
Your terrain, one story house or 2 story house are all a factor for TV reception along with the output power of the channels you are trying to receive.
My zip is 60176. it`s for the garage tv .
no cigars in the house... thanx mark
After checking out the channels in your area a Omni antenna > should work great for you. I believe you will be very happy with the antenna you have selected. However, another option that may be better is the EZ HD antenna >. All of the station transmitters are located in the same direction to your East/Southeast so no real need for an omnidirectional antenna. The EZ HD is a directional antenna and can be aimed ESE and provide a stronger signal than the omni antenna.
If you need any further help please let us know.
Remember you can always use our guarantee (if you are not satisfied in anyway you can return for a full refund).
Outdoor TV antenna to mount on a tower
I want to buy an antenna from you. What I need is an outside model that I can mount on a tower in my back yard, I don't want to mount on my roof. My lot is 1/3 acre so the distance for the run would not be more than 50 feet to the house. I have 4 TVS. My main TV is a Sony projection with build in HDTV. I live in Kalamazoo, West side. If I cancel my cable, will I get channels 2-69 with an antenna; do I need an pre-amp etc. Also, what hardware do I need to by in addition to the antenna; like coax? etc. I am open to buying your most expensive antenna if you recommend it. My zip code is 49009.
You have numerous channels available to you all within 100 miles or less. With that in mind I wouldn't hesitate to recommend a HD Stacker antenna >. Since the channels are in several directions you would benefit from a rotor and I also would highly recommend the LNA 200 TV antenna pre-amplifier > since you will splitting the signal 4 ways.
You will need: antenna, coax cable >, and mast pipe >. optional items: rotor, rotor wire, and pre-amplifier.
If I can assist you in anyway please don't hesitate to contact me.
Best of luck!
Thanks much Denny for the advice. If I place the antenna in my back yard, what do I do, bury the coax in the yard and route it into my house?
Frank, some route the wire inside of PVC pipe but that isn't necessary. I personally know of quality cable that is buried under ground that is twenty years old and still working fine.
I'm looking for a directional HDTV antenna w/ pre-amp that has a range of at least 50 miles (Pleasant Prairie, WI 53158 to Chicago) for Chicago VHF/UHF HD channels (NBC, FOX, etc.). I believe it should have a "violet" code. Which one do you recommend? Prices? Installation pretty easy? Is it easy to hook-up to DISH network satellite HD receiver?
Any other info you can provide?
You have an enormous amount of channels available to you from both Milwaukee and Chicago. I recommend the HD Stacker antenna > and a Winegard LNA 200 preamplifier > as the tv antenna preamplifier amplifier.
The AP 8700 is your best amplifier choice because of its high input capability. With the number of powerful local channels you have, your gonna need and amplifier that can handle several strong local channels without overloading, yet still can deliver the signal from your distant channels.
I hope I have been some help to you. If you have any other questions do not hesitate to contact me.
Thank you for visiting our website.
Damaged TV antenna
I regret to inform you that my TV antenna was heavily damaged by UPS during shipment. See attached photos. The carton was broken in half, as was the antenna. My order confirmation number is E19911731 The broken antenna arrived today, Thursday, July 20. The box containing the tripod and coax cable arrived yesterday, Wednesday, July 19. It contained a packing receipt. I have not been able to find the ground block GB-25 which I ordered. Please advise me how to proceed with returning this broken antenna for replacement.
I am sorry that your antenna arrived broken. We will ship you an other one right away. I will contact UPS about the damaged antenna you received and they usually want to see the damaged goods. Please hang on to the damaged antenna until you here from us. In the meantime will ship a replacement antenna to you today. If you would call me tomorrow or send us your phone number and I will call you with the details on exactly how UPS needs to handle this. The grounding block should have been in the attached bag with your lag screws. We'll send a lag screw kit and ground block with the new antenna.
Missing Weather boot
I received my antenna on Friday and I'm anxious to hook it up. It appears that I'm missing (or maybe it wasn't included in the package) a rubber boot for the coaxial cable connector to the antenna. I have looked in the the box and styrofoam inserts, and in the plastic bag of parts that came with it, but I don't see any rubber boot.
Can I get one at Radio Shack?
Your coax wire was suppose to come with a boot on it. We must have forgotten it. Yes, you can pick one up at Radio Shack. In order to put the boot on you would need to cut the connector on the end of the coax off. Then a new end would have to be put on the coax wire. Do you know how to do that? If you would like we can send you a boot, a new wire, or you can put dielectric grease in the end of the coax. Dielectric grease is what Denny uses when he installs them.
Please advise us on what you would like to do.
Would I use the dielectric grease rather than the rubber boot?
I was wondering if I could use some silicone caulk, I have that on hand.
Let me know.
Yes you would use the grease rather than the boot. Actually I prefer the dielectric grease. Silicone on the outside of the connection would be okay. The grease goes on the inside of the connection and does not conduct electricity. Silicone does conduct electricity to a low degree and must go on the outside. I apologize for this inconvenience, we do occasionally drop the ball.
No problem! I will probably just get some of the grease.
Thanks, for all your help!
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