cable tv reception

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ten_Smith, Dec 21, 2001.

  1. Ten_Smith

    Ten_Smith Stunt Coordinator

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    I run my analog cable tv through a 4-way splitter. There are problems with reception centering around channels 10 and 69, these channels come in poorly, the channels adjacent to them have mediocre recption and everything else is fine. Any suggestions for improving reception?

    One of the four splits has particularly bad reception and some of the cable for this channel has small radius bends, could that be related to the channel specific recption problem?
     
  2. Howard_S

    Howard_S Supporting Actor

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    Do a search and you will probably find quite a few posts on cable tv talk.
    The first thing I would do is to ditch the splitter and run the cable straight to the tv/cable box. Then check the quality. If the image is much better then you're definitely splitting the image too much and I don't think any splitter will help you there. However I have heard many people splitting their cable like you do without any problems. But anyways try that and if it's still bad you should call your cable company and have them check your cable signal. From what I learned here (thanks guys [​IMG] ) the cable signal is like the most important thing especially if you have digital cable. So if the signal is weak you have to get the cable company to fix it. How else are you connecting the cable? Are you just connecting the cable to the tv or do you have a digital box and have it connected through S-Video?
    Forgot that you said analog so I assume it's just the cable to the splitter to the tvs?
     
  3. Allan Jayne

    Allan Jayne Cinematographer

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    You can try an antenna booster before the splitter or a distribution amp (booster and splitter) instead of a plain splitter.
    You will have to do the research about what frequency bands the cable channels occupy and that the booster amplifies those bands.
    I have examined the insides of splitters and I am not surprised if a few channels here and there don't come through well or if one of the splitter outputs doesn't work well. There is no such thing as a 100% efficient splitter so if there are four output legs, at least one if not all of them will have less than 25% (more than 6 dB down) of the total signal strength.
    Sharp bends in or squashing of coax cable can cause problems.
    Generally you are supposed to pay extra for every additional TV connected to the cable system.
    Other video hints:
    http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/video.htm
     
  4. Charles L.

    Charles L. Agent

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    check your cables. If the cable connections are not made right then you can loose picture quality on certain channels. This type of problem is always most evident on cable tv. The dielect should be flush with the inside of the F-connector and the center pin should just barely extend past the threads
     
  5. Richard Burzynski

    Richard Burzynski Second Unit

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    Ten:

    First test signal quality. Try a direct connection from the pre-split point to the problem areas. If the direct connection doesn't solve the problem it may require a call to your cable provider. Could be your connection to the house is not optimal.

    If the direct connection test does help, it's your splitter and subsequent cable wire runs. Go to Radio Shack and get a Coax Cable amp. They have a few models $30-50. They work well and also act as spliters as the different models provide 2+ outputs. I've been using them for 3 years now and they always make a difference in my systems.

    Important:

    Do the direct connection test first. If your source signal isn't "clean" the only thing the amp will do is maybe make it look worse (amplify the bad signal).

    Happy Holidays.

    Rich B.
     
  6. James Reyes

    James Reyes Stunt Coordinator

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    Why bother with all this? Just get DBS.
     
  7. Albert M

    Albert M Stunt Coordinator

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    A building or trees could = no DBS.
     
  8. Ten_Smith

    Ten_Smith Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanx for all the good ideas guys. I am definitely going to check how the F-connectors are put on, try the direct connection test, and see if an amplifier works.
    The contractor used RG-59 and made the runs with some right angle turn (very tight turn radius that I think might be messing things up).
    I'm off to the store to pick up connectors, cable (RG-6), and an amplifier, I'll let y'all know how it turns out. Do y'all think the quad shield calbe is worth it?
    Regrading the legality of splitters, my understanding was that they are legal these days as long as you are just using them yourself, not running it to a non-paying customer. At first splitters were illegal, but now they are legal. I'm pretty sure that's true, at least here in Georgia.
    Allan, nice link, I like you stuff on buying a non-HDTV.
    James, would you like to pay for my DBS with cash, check, or credit card. I accept all forms of payment. [​IMG]
     
  9. Ten_Smith

    Ten_Smith Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm digging up this old thread b/c I got a couple of e-mails about it with questions, so there was interest. I have finally finished fixing up the 4-way split, and reception is good for all 4 runs. I achieved this without using an amplifier. Here is what I did do to get good reception to all 4 runs without using an amplifier.

    First, I traced the main reception problem to a poorly installed f-connector. Even though it was down-stream of the 4-way splitter (between the wall and a vcr), it effected reception on all the runs. Once I replaced the connector with one that was installed properly picture quality improved remarkably for all runs.

    There was one run I am not using. When I put a terminator on that, I got another significant improvement.

    Finally, I switched runs that were RG-59 to RG-6. And netted further marginal improvements.

    Currently picture quality is excellent on all channels for all feeds.

    One curious thing, after making each of the above changes the full positive effects did not seem to take hold until several hours after the change. Can anyone explain why this might happen?

    My guess is that the network is finding a new equillibrium, this would also explain why a bad f-connector on one run would effect other runs, and why a terminator on one run would effect other runs.
     

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