Sunday, February 12, 2017

How to Set Up an Indoor TV Antenna in 3 steps

In most urban areas it should be possible to receive free-to-air television. The best option for strong TV signal reception is always a roof mounted antenna. However, a poorly maintained TV antenna (common in rental accommodation) is the most likely cause of poor TV reception. With the latest development in TV antenna technology in many cases it may be possible to use a high-performance indoor TV antenna to improve your digital TV reception.

How to find out if a hi-gain indoor antenna is suitable? In this post we will use Sydney Australia as an example.

Step 1: To find digital TV coverage at your location visit the Australian Federal Government web-site 'mySwitch' and enter your full address.

Digital TV coverage is colour coded. If you see green this represents "Good Coverage" so it's likely a hi-gain indoor antenna will work well at this location. Make a note of the direction towards the nearest transmitter, in this case it is approximately south (199.3 °). Just to double check a hi-gain indoor antenna is suitable click the "Antenna setup guide" link in the top left hand box.

On the "Antenna setup guide" page, if the instructions for antenna setup for your location are as shown below i.e. Gain: Low, Type: Wideband UHF antenna, Height: Roof height then it's looking good for a high performance UHF indoor antenna like HD-QUAD.

Step 2: Setting up an indoor TV antenna like HD-QUAD and connecting it to you TV is pretty easy but there are some details to pay attention to.

  • 1) Best results are achieved with HD-QUAD mounted on a window facing in the general direction of the transmitter (in this example: South)
  • 2) If the window is aluminium framed it is best to place HD-QUAD in the middle of the window equal distance from the window frame. Aluminium is electrically conductive and may interfere with the optimal antenna performance.
  • Once you've mounted the HD-QUAD indoor antenna, connect it to the TV antenna socket with a male-to-male 75 ohm coaxial extension lead. TIP: The thicker the coaxial cable the lower the signal loss along it's length.

    Step 3: Channels available from the selected transmitter are listed on the "Antenna setup guide" page. To tune your TV find “Channel Setup” (found by pressing “Menu” on your remote) and run a channel scan on your TV; note that running a channel scan is NOT the same as pressing channel UP/DOWN on your remote.

    Having followed all the instructions above you should be receiving crystal clear digital 1080p HDTV pictures, and in the process might have saved yourself $$$ on professional roof-top TV antenna installation.


    Saturday, August 22, 2015

    Indoor TV Antenna Review » Silicon Chip Magazine « HD-QUAD

    Silicon Chip Magazine: Product Showcase. April 2014

    See-Through Window UHF TV Antenna

    "We would highly recommend this antenna for good UHF signal areas"

    If you're in a reasonably strong UHF signal area this new "roll-up" TV antenna from HD-Quad could solve a number of TV antenna problems - especially if you're renting or perhaps you don't want to go to the trouble and expense of erecting an external antenna.

    The HD-Quad is a two-bay UHF phased array which simply sticks to a window, facing in the general direction of the TV transmitter.

    The backing laminate film is completely transparent - it won't block your view at all - and the antenna "elements", made of conductive silver ink traces, are hardly noticeable. Because it's so thin, operation of sliding windows, blinds, etc are virtually unaffected.

    The antenna is A3 in size and weighs in at a miserly 100g. While it naturally lends itself to horizontal polarity, it could be mounted vertically for vertically polarised signals. However, we have to say that when we tried it out, there was no discernable difference in signal when mounted horizontally and aimed at a vertically polarised translator.

    It will cover UHF channels from 28-69; however, when the digital TV restack is completed this year you will only need to cover 28 to 51 (channels 52-69 will all disappear).

    A short (50mm) lead is attached to the antenna with female PAL connector for plugging into a standard TV coax extension lead-in. This (and the lead-in) should be secured in their own right to prevent the weight teventually dragging the antenna free.

    In use

    We tried the HD-Quad in two locations - one with line-of-sight coverage from Noth Head translator (at about 10km) and the other in a known TV black spot, where coverage is normally only availiable from the Bouddi translator (at about 50km) using high-gain outside antenna mounted high off the ground, and definatley assisted by a masthead amplifier.

    In the first location, the picture was rock-solid on all channels (now, of course, digital). In fact, there was even a good picture received from the off-axis (about 90) Kings Cross translator (at about 15km) on all channels. We would highly recommend this antenna for good UHF signal areas.

    The second location was, as we expected, not so good. In fact, the only channels we were able to receive was the SBS suits - 1, 2, 3 and HD. Even then, there was pixellation and drop outs. But having said that, we were surprised it did that well! It is the only "indoor" antenna we've ever tried in that location that received anything! The HD-Quad is definitely not designed for such poor signal strengths.

    At $39.99, the HD-Quad won't break the bank - especially as you have nothing else to buy (except a lead-in, perhaps). It's simply a matter of fixing it to the window (tabs are supplied) plugging it in and away she goes!

    HD-Quad also have a similar but larger (A2 size) model, capable of receiving both VHF and UHF signals. Again, after the restack is finished, you probabaly won't need to be able to receive both (however, there are exceptions in very few areas).


    [Silicon Chip] SiliconChipPg

    Saturday, March 1, 2014

    How It Works: HD-QUAD Indoor Digital HDTV Antenna

    You may have seen many examples of the antenna pictured above mounted across suburban roof-tops. This type of antenna is a fairly common UHF TV antenna design which goes under various names such as DB2, 2 bay Bowtie or dual stacked phased array.

    Functionally this antenna comprises 2x horizontal wideband dipoles stacked one above the other which are connected together with a low-loss high impedance open wire feed line. The wire screen behind serves as a reflector.

    Stacking antenna is a very common method of increasing antenna gain in commercial and amateur radio applications and produces a theoretical 3 dB increase in gain. Remembering that Decibel (Symbol: dB) is a logarithmic unit meaning a 3 dB increase is a doubling of antenna gain.

    One of the biggest challenges to providing adequate TV antenna performance is the extremely wide range of frequencies used. For example, international digital television broadcasting UHF Bands IV and V cover a range from 470 - 582 and from 582 - 862 MHz in Europe and up to 960 MHz in the Americas. When you consider a conventional half wave dipole antenna, often colloquially referred to as rabbit ears or bunny ears, has a fractional bandwidth of 8% of it's resonant frequency, this falls far short of the almost 400 Mhz bandwidth required for reliable digital UHF TV reception.

    Wideband Antennas

    A bowtie antenna is a wire approximation in two dimensions of an ultra-wideband biconical dipole antenna. The bowtie has a fractional bandwidth exceeding 30% and is often used in TV antenna design as it enables strong performance across the entire UHF TV broadcast band.

    HD-QUAD: Bringing the power of High-Gain roof-top Phased Array Digital HDTV antenna indoors.

    The HD-QUAD A3 is a clear, flexible, window mountable, indoor antenna that is electrically identical to a standard DB2 antenna less the reflector. Manufactued using State-of-the-art printed electronics techniques, it uses highly conductive silver elements which are more conductive than copper and almost twice the conductivity of aluminium elements.

    The flexible printed circuit type open wire feed lines are precision designed to correctly phase the incoming signals from the dual stacked antennas while also maximizing antenna efficiency to ensure as much signal as possible makes it to the antenna socket on the back of the TV.

    If you need a high-gain UHF digital HDTV antenna without the added expense of roof-top mounting, or you live in an apartment and are unable to mount an external antenna on the building, HD-QUAD may be what you're looking for.

    Source: HD-QUAD

    Tuesday, June 25, 2013

    Indoor TV Antenna » HD-QUAD Mini Indoor A3 UHF Window Antenna

    HD-QUAD: Bringing the power and efficiency of roof-top High-Gain Phased Array Digital HDTV antenna indoors.

    Setting a new standard for indoor TV antenna, the A3 sized ultra wideband HD-QUAD is so thin and clear, it can be placed practically anywhere, on an interior window, a wall, behind a picture or a flat panel TV.

    Ideal for urban areas, HD-QUAD is well suited for use anywhere digital Free-To-Air TV is available. With most digital TV transmitters being half the power of the analogue services they replace and the numerous local TV repeater networks established during the transition from analogue to digital TV all being UHF and relatively low powered, a high gain UHF antenna is most often required to receive pixelation-free digital TV pictures.

    Made using highly conductive SILVER elements for maximum signal transfer, HD-QUAD is manufactured using state-of-the-art printed electronics technology allowing precision tuning of both the frequency bandwidth and output impedance to deliver an impressive 98% of signal reception to the digital tuner rather than being lost through impedance mismatches and phase cancellation.

    No Ladder Required

    No ladder scaling or assembly is required for installation. Simply attach HD-QUAD to a window or wall with the SCOTCH® removable clear mounting squares provided, plug in a patch cable to connect HD-QUAD to the TV, perform a channel scan and you’ll be watching free-to-air HDTV in just minutes.



    HD-QUAD retails for $39.99

    Key Specifications

  • Band F IV/V, 470 to 862 MHz
  • UHF Channels: 28-69
  • Maximum gain: 10 dBi
  • Includes 75 ohm Balun
  • Can be used for horizontal or vertical polarisation.
  • Measures 420 mm x 297 mm (A3 paper size) 16.5″ x 11.7″