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bozey45
12-19-2007, 03:33 PM
Has anyone had any experience with TV antennas marketed at Radio Shack?? I need an outdoor antenna for my area of Pasco County Fl just north of Tampa. There is a RS just down from us that does stock antennas but I'm not sure how good they are compared to others. I was into TV DX years ago and had a deep fringe antenna purchased locally back then from Dow Electronics, a huge antenna that I used at the house prior to this one down in Tampa. when I moved, didn't bother to bring it with me; I took it down and junked it and the rotor and telescoping mast. Didn't think I would use it up here. BAD DECISION! But now with the DTV signals around now I've been bitten by the bug again. That antenna was over $200 back then (late 1970's), forgotten what make it was. The telescoping mast was at 30 feet and guyed down. I'm thinking about the new rotor that uses the coax as its wire and doesn't need a separate wire. Its only drawback is the antenna can be no longer than 131 inches to work with it according to the info on the rotor. Anyway jsut curious about those Radio Shack antennas.

John Wilke K9RZZ
12-22-2007, 04:45 AM
Haven't had any problems with them in the past. I've purchased two Winegard FM antennas online recently and I think they are a good value.

cd637299
12-22-2007, 06:02 AM
I second that emotion....all my good TV DX has been with R Shack antennas (*cough* "Got TV DX?" Board *cough*-----photos to prove it).

The drawback.....the plastic clips that hold the elements are generally not that strong. Also if a big windstorm is coming (not quite a tropical storm or a hurricane), I suggest you do NOT "anchor" it; i.e, let it blow any which way, so the elements do not weep like a willow.

Basically, it's a case of you-get-what-you-pay-for as far as workmanship/quality, but you really do get bang for the buck.

Tip: I have had the (discontinued) VU-210 & V-190, and really IMO they are not much better than the VU 90 XR they carry now.....and, with only one boom, it is quite lightweight and much easier on the muscles. I doubt I'll ever again get a 2-boom antenna.

Pasco being near Tampa, you certainly would not wanna overload the receiver(s) with images from Tampa/St. Pete stations bleeding on other channels.

I live near Miami....you are one-up on me, in the sense that channel 2 is open, so you can sense E-skip before I can on ch 3.

cd in Broward :)

Danny
12-22-2007, 10:11 AM
I second that emotion....all my good TV DX has been with R Shack antennas (*cough* "Got TV DX?" Board *cough*-----photos to prove it).

Tip: I have had the (discontinued) VU-210 & V-190, and really IMO they are not much better than the VU 90 XR they carry now.....and, with only one boom, it is quite lightweight and much easier on the muscles. I doubt I'll ever again get a 2-boom antenna.

My old RS VU antenna had plenty of gain, and it was a good performer. The major advantage of top-line CMs (Quantums, Crossfires), Winegards (Chromstars), and Delhi/Jerrold/General Instruments (VIPs) is directivity.

bozey45
12-22-2007, 03:35 PM
Thanks for the tips. My location is about 35 miles north of the :antenna farm" for channels 3, 8,, 13, 16, 22, 28, and 44. Channel 32 is probably the same a little more southeast in Lakeland area around 35 miles; channel 66 is a little more southwest near Bradenton, probably 45 miles I believe; and channel 10 is totally askew directly west of my location about 30 miles or so. I was thinking of a separate antenna for UHF and VHF rather than a combo, but haven't really decided yet. We have some other smaller U's north and south of here and east towards Orlando also., and a number of those low power U's in this area scattered all over. When the Christmas madness is over I'll really get back into it hopefully. If I rooftop the antennas on a gable, I have a perfect tall peak at a midlocation on this house, or I could put a mast on a side location and get it about 30 feet up---there are some trees about 200 feet south of here to try and conquer and a couple of oak trees in the back yard I would have to shoot thru to get Channel 10. When I stand on top of the house at that mid location gable peak the trees south of here should be no problem--that seems to be the best location for the antenna--but I'm not sure a gable mount would be good enough if I used 2 separate antennas because of spacing them apart, so may have to go with one antenna; and there is always the tripod mount I realize; but would rather use a gable mount if it would be strong enough. Also thought about a telescoping mast like I used before, that really came in handy for threatening storms. Anyway, lots to consider here.

bozey45
12-22-2007, 03:35 PM
Thanks for the tips. My location is about 35 miles north of the :antenna farm" for channels 3, 8,, 13, 16, 22, 28, and 44. Channel 32 is probably the same a little more southeast in Lakeland area around 35 miles; channel 66 is a little more southwest near Bradenton, probably 45 miles I believe; and channel 10 is totally askew directly west of my location about 30 miles or so. I was thinking of a separate antenna for UHF and VHF rather than a combo, but haven't really decided yet. We have some other smaller U's north and south of here and east towards Orlando also., and a number of those low power U's in this area scattered all over. When the Christmas madness is over I'll really get back into it hopefully. If I rooftop the antennas on a gable, I have a perfect tall peak at a midlocation on this house, or I could put a mast on a side location and get it about 30 feet up---there are some trees about 200 feet south of here to try and conquer and a couple of oak trees in the back yard I would have to shoot thru to get Channel 10. When I stand on top of the house at that mid location gable peak the trees south of here should be no problem--that seems to be the best location for the antenna--but I'm not sure a gable mount would be good enough if I used 2 separate antennas because of spacing them apart, so may have to go with one antenna; and there is always the tripod mount I realize; but would rather use a gable mount if it would be strong enough. Also thought about a telescoping mast like I used before, that really came in handy for threatening storms. Anyway, lots to consider here.

cd637299
12-22-2007, 05:04 PM
To add:

As to Danny's post, for me I think the big time Shack VU's may have been slightly better, but they may have overloaded my signals at home. I live by myself (which will change, ha ha) & I used to have to try to mount a VU-210 or a V-190 (attached to a 5' mast) onto another mast, and I'll tell ya, it's dangerous by yourself.

Be sure you get help mounting any of these, or a Channel Master or Winegard.

And of course, the VU 90 XR, when elements are collapsed manually, fit in an SUV like I have. Practically all the photos I've sent the last 2 years were from remote locations far enough away from my locals....as for E-skip, I've seen all the ch 3's of Es distance at home----it was time to try other locations.

So, I have two VU90XR's. One for the house & the other for trips. I also have their R Shack FM antenna, which I grabbed before they were no longer available in stores.

cd

bozey45
12-22-2007, 09:51 PM
Thanks for the tips. My location is about 35 miles north of the :antenna farm" for channels 3, 8,, 13, 16, 22, 28, and 44. Channel 32 is probably the same a little more southeast in Lakeland area around 35 miles; channel 66 is a little more southwest near Bradenton, probably 45 miles I believe; and channel 10 is totally askew directly west of my location about 30 miles or so. I was thinking of a separate antenna for UHF and VHF rather than a combo, but haven't really decided yet. We have some other smaller U's north and south of here and east towards Orlando also., and a number of those low power U's in this area scattered all over. When the Christmas madness is over I'll really get back into it hopefully. If I rooftop the antennas on a gable, I have a perfect tall peak at a midlocation on this house, or I could put a mast on a side location and get it about 30 feet up---there are some trees about 200 feet south of here to try and conquer and a couple of oak trees in the back yard I would have to shoot thru to get Channel 10. When I stand on top of the house at that mid location gable peak the trees south of here should be no problem--that seems to be the best location for the antenna--but I'm not sure a gable mount would be good enough if I used 2 separate antennas because of spacing them apart, so may have to go with one antenna; and there is always the tripod mount I realize; but would rather use a gable mount if it would be strong enough. Also thought about a telescoping mast like I used before, that really came in handy for threatening storms. Anyway, lots to consider here.

w9wi
12-27-2007, 01:53 PM
FWIW, final DTV channel assignments for the Tampa and Orlando markets:

Analog: station's current analog channel
Interim: station's current digital channel, until 2/17/2009
Permanent: station's permanent digital channel, beginning 2/17/2009

Tampa:
Station Analog Interim Permanent
WXPX 66 42 42
WCLF 22 21 21
WMOR 32 19 19
WWSB 40 52 24
WTTA 38 57 38
WTOG 44 59 44
WTSP 10 24 10
WFTT 50 47 47
WEDU 3 54 13
WFTS 28 29 29
WUSF 16 34 34
WFLA 8 7 7
WTVT 13 12 12
WVEA 62 25 25

Orlando:
WKCF 18 17 17
WHLV 52 53 51
WBCC 68 30 30
WVEN 26 49 49
WESH 2 11 11
WTGL 45 46 46
WACX 55* 40 40
WOPX 56 48 48
WOTF 43 20 43
WCEU 15 33 33
WRDQ 27 14 27
WRBW 65 41 41
WMFE 24 23 23
WFTV 9 39 39
WOFL 35 22 22
WKMG 6 58 26

* I believe WACX's analog signal is already off the air, they're a DTV-only station on ch. 40.

I guess the moral of the story is, be sure you have a workable high-band VHF antenna.

Mike-CT
12-27-2007, 05:58 PM
I guess the moral of the story is, be sure you have a workable high-band VHF antenna.

Not absolutely necessary. The CM 4228 8-Bay does a great job with high VHF. I have DTV Vs on 10,11 and 12. Ch10 is 50 miles S, ch11 is 15mi N and ch12 is SW about 40 miles. The 4228 is the only UHF antenna I've used that will pick these up, and the signal strength is local like. Plus it's super all the way to ch52.

He may not need a VHF antenna at all (except for DXing, lol).