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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:48 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:31 pm
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Location: Victoria, BC, CA
I really enjoy listening to FM radio every day and evening. And this is awfully embarrassing, but I have only run one of those really cheap flat antenna wires tacked against the wall behind my audio rack. It's really sad.

My old Hitachi FT-920 is a nice sounding old tuner, but I know it can sound a lot better if I got my antenna act together. But I'm not really in the know (also sadly), about what a good antenna would be to run. I don't want to break the bank, and if I can get something for say $75 - $150 max, I would do it. I live in a typical residential neighbourhood in Victoria on Southern Vancouver Island, 1 block from the ocean, and 20 KM directly across the sea from Port Angeles, Washington.

I listen primarily to CBC, KPLQ and NPR from the U.S. and occassionally the local University station. So I don't really need something that will bring in a lot of stations, just looking for something to improve existing reception and provide for good, clean sound.

I have to ability to run a coax from the tuner up through the wall and into the attic, or even outside on the roof if need be. What should I be looking for here? Any specific recommendations would be greatly appreciated.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:01 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2005 3:39 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Calgary, AB, CA
i have one sold by Magnum Dynalab, model ST-2. It looks like a straight rod car antenna. can be installed inside or outside at some high point. works great.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:24 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 25, 2004 4:52 pm
Posts: 993
Location: Montreal, QC, CA
I`ve been using a Fanfare FM-2G mounted on a ground floor balcony for the past 15 or so years on a number of tuners with good results despite being so low and in the shadow of Montreal's primary transmitters.
Atmospheric conditions do come into play occasionally but that would probably not be the case if I was able to get some more elevation.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:50 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:31 pm
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Location: Victoria, BC, CA
Thanks guys, appreciated. The Magnum Dynalab and the Fanfare look to be very similar. I will look into these units further, may just be the ticket.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:57 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:00 am
Posts: 4005
Location: Golden Triangle, ON, CA
Jamo1 wrote:
i have one sold by Magnum Dynalab, model ST-2. It looks like a straight rod car antenna. can be installed inside or outside at some high point. works great.



I have 2 of these in the attic , one vertical at the back with coaxial straight to my tuner
and the second horizontal with coaxial to my magnum md 205 signal sleuth then to the tuner.

Works fantastic for all three bands on the MD108 for near and far stations keeping channels
separated and strong. I also have one of the SR 100 silver ribbon antennas from when they
were 25 bucks, in the shop. Its ridiculous how well that thing works hooked up to an old
receiver. Reminds me of the old rabbit ears sitting on top of the black n white tv we had. :mrgreen:


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2016 11:59 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 30, 2012 7:33 am
Posts: 118
Location: Queen Charlotte, BC, CA
The modified antenna from UHF magazine has always intrigued me. I have not bought one because in a metal clad building the antenna has to be mounted outside. It is towards the bottom of the accessories list here.


http://www.uhfmag.com/MiscAccessories.html


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 2:30 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2005 11:47 am
Posts: 3807
Location: Ottawa, ON, CA
To point out, the height of the antenna is quite important.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 5:01 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:48 pm
Posts: 2306
Location: West GTA, ON, CA
If you can mount an antenna on the roof, then that is the best way to go. The Fanfare, etc. antennae are made by Metz and I would check out a marine/boating supply store to see if they sell whip antennae. The advantage that whip antenna have is the low profile & that they work reasonably well. Good quality coax, RG6 at least is a must.

A dedicated FM antenna can be had for $50. See these for options:
http://antennacraft.net/Antennas/AntennasFM.html
http://www.godarusa.com/index.html
http://www.saveandreplay.com/

You will also need a tripod. Putting up a roof top antenna is only for the "handyman" or a pro. You should have help regardless. If you have ask how difficult it is, then DO NOT diy!

You could also put up a TV antenna and you will be surprised at what you can pick up over the air.

Basically, you have to decide how much effort that you want to put into installing an antenna.
The "best" option is to have a very tall tower 100 feet or better :lol: :wink:
A 20 or 30 foot tower would likely work for you.
After that chimney or rooftop mounting is best
Attic mounting is below that.

Cost and effort go up the higher you go :wink:


Last edited by Vinyl Guy on Thu Mar 17, 2016 5:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 5:12 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2012 6:29 am
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
Magnum ST-2 easy to mount with a drill - just make sure you assemble the bracket ON THE GROUND or you will drop and probably lose a significant part. Higher is better. As for wire, the correct wire is actually RG59 with full foil shield. RG6 will work but it is inferior in this application. provo 5911 works excellent.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 5:17 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:48 pm
Posts: 2306
Location: West GTA, ON, CA
Quote:
As for wire, the correct wire is actually RG59 with full foil shield. RG6 will work but it is inferior in this application.


Not if you are using RG6 quad shield. I use Belden with a solid copper core. Most RG59 & RG6 is steel with copper cladding so the drones at the local cable company can really yank it and it won't break.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 8:40 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 14, 2013 4:52 pm
Posts: 3335
Location: Lasalle, ON, CA
I actually listen to FM more than anything else, and I've been thinking about trying an outside antenna for a while now, so I figured I would give this one a try (just ordered it and will likely either put it on a post or attach it to the peak of the roof on the side of the house):

https://www.amazon.ca/Winegard-HD-6010- ... B001HKM1HM

Two questions:
1) Will the reception of an antenna like this be affected much by the wind?
2) Can you set it up so that one antenna can serve multiple tuners at once (maybe using 'Y' connections or something like that)?

Thanks.

_________________
Phil


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 9:39 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:48 pm
Posts: 2306
Location: West GTA, ON, CA
The antenna you ordered is often referred to as a "turnstile" or "omni" directional type. The advantage is that it picks up signals from all directions, thus the name "omni". Wind does not affect reception. However, if everything is not tied down, including the coax, movement or breakage can occur over time as a result of our Canadian climate.

Addendum:
Yes, Jimmi is correct you can use splitters (I need to read the question more carefully! :oops: ). I used Monster Cable splitters, because I found them on sale and they are decently made. My external antenna goes to two TVs & two FM tuners located in different spots in the house, but I need an antenna amp to do so.


Last edited by Vinyl Guy on Thu Mar 17, 2016 12:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 9:59 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:00 am
Posts: 4005
Location: Golden Triangle, ON, CA
Yes , the signal can be split for different sources.
Just don't forget a path to ground or you will be installing
a lightning rod directly to your system.
Line of sight will determine how far one has to go up for the
best reception . I am on a hill and no roofline around me is
taller or close so the attic works perfectly. If I was surrounded
by taller buildings blocking direction for line of sight and lower
geography wise, tall tower, if your rural distance needs height
and a better antenna mast. I'm lucky to have such good reception
with minimum effort as I use the tuner quite a bit also.
Not the amount of good stations long back , but still some out there.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 11:01 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 06, 2014 1:00 pm
Posts: 102
Location: Dunstable, MA, US
I also listen to a lot of FM music. I would suggest you first try Rabbit Ears. You can easily position them for the best FM reception for each FM channel. Cheap also.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 11:06 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2005 2:06 pm
Posts: 4868
Location: Montreal, QC, CA
I have had a Version 1 UHF Super Antenna for years, since way before I ever met the magazine's editor. Had it on the TV and it worked great. About ten years back, one of my kids broke off an arm. ( Well I say so, but maybe it was me who did that, trying to straighten it. )

I wrote UHF Magazine to see if they could repair it. Well not only was the answer yes, the repair was no charge.


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