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Ahoy,
Has anyone fabricated an antenna that actually works at providing better tv reception. Please share your ideas. Thanks
Fair Winds,
slbt
 

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Funny you should ask....I was messing around today and hooked my TV to my vhf coax and the picture was pretty darn good on 3 of the channel. A couple of others weren''t so good.
My mast is 47'' tall and the VHF antenna looks to be another 2'' taller. Not sure I recommend that...but I can''t see where it would hurt......

But I''m getting ready to get a Dantronics UFO like one of my friends her in the marina...he gets good reception on all the channels.
 

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I like my boatenna

Of all the fancy, bulky, and powered antennas I have tried, I like the Boatenna best. Google it for their website.
 

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Coastal Traveler
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TV Signals

So you're saying that it works with digital TV? do you still need a digital converter on an older TV? It doesn't sound right.
 

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SaltwaterSuzi/CapnLarry
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I built an antenna about 12 years ago for about ten bucks. I looked at the one that West Marine carried (they don't market it anymore) for about $89.95. It was a simple dipole antenna fashioned out of two half circles of pieces of aluminum to make a complete circle insulated at the junctions. Another piece of aluminum forms the support across the center (attached to the two insulating pieces. I used little chunks of starboard for the insulators. Then a vertical piece attached to the center support attaches it to the mizzen mast. The one I built is about 2 feet in diameter. Size isn't terribly critical unless you're trying to tune to a very specific frequency. The TV spectrum is fairly wide and includes FM (between channels 6 and 7). I use a 300 ohm to 75 ohm impedance transfomer (Radio Shack) at the antenna and RG59 coax cable to come down inside the mast and route it forward to the TV.

It still works well after 12 years. With a digital TV I get about 4 or 5 stations, crystal clear, especially at night when I'm at the marina. Masts interfere, especially with the digital signal.

When we are out at anchor on the Chesapeake, we get upwards of 20 stations - again crystal clear. You don't need a 'digital' antenna. They still use the same frequencies, it's just a digital signal instead of an analog. That's why each station is able to fit 2 or 3 signals (e.g. 2-1; 2-2;2-3) where before the analog signal took the entire bandwidth they were allotted.

You could, I suppose, amplify the signal and be able to receive more stations. You cannot use an older TV without an analog to digital converter. Most, if not all, TV's sold in the last 3 or so years are digital capable. A small flat screen which would be good for most sailboats should cost in the neighborhood of $200. I think we paid $189.95 for ours at Circuit City before they went belly up.

We use an AB splitter to send the antenna signal either to our TV or the FM radio. Good strong signal on the FM even in the marina with all the masts.
 

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So you're saying that it works with digital TV? do you still need a digital converter on an older TV? It doesn't sound right.
Any standard TV antenna or reasonable facsimile will work with digital TV here in the USA. Older TV's and even some newer TV's that don't have a digital tuner built in still need an add on converter box. All TV's produced since March of last year for sale here do not need a converter box...and many produced from about 2001 on have the digital tuner built in as well.
If your TV has a tube rather than a flat panel...it will need any antenna and a converter box to get any reception now on your boat unless you are hooked up to cable at the dock or have a dish!
 

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A decent signal from the antenna is critical for DTV. With analog TV, if the signal was weak, you got some snow, but could still watch. With DTV, it's either perfect or unwatchable. In a slip, a small directional antenna can be aimed and will probably work fine. When cruising and at anchor or on a mooring when you are constantly swinging, an amplified omni-directional antenna is probably the best choice.
 

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i have an antenna from best buy that works okay. its basicly a bow tie ant on a plastic sheet. its very flat and i put it between the liner and deck, its not perfect but it works. i use a laptop with a tv tuner card feeding a mounted 15 inch monitor that runs on 12 volts. this works better than the powered dtv ant i have at home

antenna
 

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Okay, maybe this is a tad off-topic but we have found a solution to our tv reception problems - it's a radical departure. We took off our tv set, antenna and installed a small flatscreen on which we watch video podcasts & dvd's. There are many free video podcasts worth watching - some about sailing. An excellent new audio podcast by the way is:

[edit]
 

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I haven't try any fabricated antenna, Even i didn't heard about it. I am just using a simple multi directional antenna. Its also working very well. You should also try this. I would also like to know more about it. I would definitely look forward to it....

(Links removed)
 
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