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post #1 of 28 Old 12-18-2018, 07:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Chicago: Reception of DB2e vs DB4e issues

I've had a DB2e mounted at a certain location and height - reception fine on all channels (except CBS).

Just tried a DB4e mounted same location and height with center of array where center of DB2e was - reception choppy and inconsistent.

I expected he reception to be at least the same but am very disappointed in this outcome and expected way better than this. Thinking of sending it back.

Is this antenna defective or is the difference between these 2 that great?

Nick

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post #2 of 28 Old 12-18-2018, 08:05 PM
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You are assuming that all 4 bays of the DB4e are receiving the same signal strength, which is probably not the case; you probably have a non-uniform field;
http://www.hdtvprimer.com/antennas/siting.html
Scroll down to Non-uniform fields

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post #3 of 28 Old 12-18-2018, 08:24 PM
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I don't have personal experience with those antennas but I understand that the DB4 and DB4e are much more directional than the DB2 and DB2e are. So if you don't have a clear line of sight to your stations, or if they're in different directions, you may actually get worse performance with the DB4e.

If you could, post a TVFool report; it would probably be easier to tell.
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post #4 of 28 Old 12-18-2018, 08:34 PM
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The DB4e has the same same horizontal beamwidth as the DB2e, but the vertical beamwidth of the DB4e is less. If you look closely at the DB4e, you will see that it isn't an actual 4-bay bowtie antenna, it is two 2-bay antennas in a vertical stack with a wire harness connecting them.



IIRC, the OP is using an indoor antenna in Westmont, IL
TVFool report from previous thread:
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...9038a3f33ba083

previous thread:
http://01900888.com/forum/25-hd...l#post56597166

His DB2e is precisely positioned at a hot spot which is probably not large enough to fully cover the larger area of the DB4e. This can be confirmed by moving the DB2e around to see how large the hot spot is.

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Last edited by rabbit73; 12-19-2018 at 07:33 AM.
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post #5 of 28 Old 12-19-2018, 06:55 AM
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Thread title edited. Please read posts that say READ BEFORE POSTING ....before posting.

Include a LINK to a TVFool report in ALL antenna help threads.

Walking the fine line between jaw-dropping and a plain ol' yawn.
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post #6 of 28 Old 12-19-2018, 11:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncsercs View Post
I've had a DB2e mounted at a certain location and height - reception fine on all channels (except CBS).
CBS is on VHF-High real channel 12. Your VHF dipole doesn't have much gain; you might need more antenna gain for 12.



If that doesn't work, it means the noise level is high; the additional antenna gain will make the signal and the noise stronger by the same amount resulting in no improvement in the SNR of 12.

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post #7 of 28 Old 12-19-2018, 11:43 AM
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Short of breaking the antenna, the only thing that could be defective would be the printed circuit board used as a balun. Swap the boards between the two antennas and see if the UHF reception concerns move with the board or stay with the DB4e antenna.



If it moves, then the PCB is probably cracked and will need replacement. Just contact us via phone, email, or chat for warranty service. http://www.antennasdirect.com/customer-service.html



If the issue stays with the DB4e, then the issue is, as already suggested, likely a location issue rather than a hardware issue. The other possibility is excessive amplification as I can see a preamp on one of the photos, but there is insufficient information available to opine on that possibility beyond mentioning it as a possibility,

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post #8 of 28 Old 12-19-2018, 03:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ADTech View Post
Short of breaking the antenna, the only thing that could be defective would be the printed circuit board used as a balun. Swap the boards between the two antennas and see if the UHF reception concerns move with the board or stay with the DB4e antenna.



If it moves, then the PCB is probably cracked and will need replacement. Just contact us via phone, email, or chat for warranty service. http://www.antennasdirect.com/customer-service.html



If the issue stays with the DB4e, then the issue is, as already suggested, likely a location issue rather than a hardware issue. The other possibility is excessive amplification as I can see a preamp on one of the photos, but there is insufficient information available to opine on that possibility beyond mentioning it as a possibility,
Both baluns are fine. Moved the DB4e around and got similar results. Put the DB2e back into the original location and now everything's back to normal.

ADTech, how do I go about returning this? It's all packed up as original and ready to go. Or am I stuck with it?

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post #9 of 28 Old 12-19-2018, 08:25 PM
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Return Policy:
http://www.antennasdirect.com/return-policy.html

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post #10 of 28 Old 12-20-2018, 11:15 AM
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Contact customer service for RMA if ordered directly from us via the website or on the phone. Link is in post #7 above.



If you purchased from any other seller, follow their return policy and procedure.
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post #11 of 28 Old 12-20-2018, 03:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbit73 View Post
The DB4e has the same same horizontal beamwidth as the DB2e, but the vertical beamwidth of the DB4e is less.
You are right, of course; for some reason I had the ClearStream 2 and ClearStream 4 in my head when I wrote that. Senior moment, I guess

Anyhow, thanks for the TVFool report. I see a couple of trouble spots:

  1. A few VHF stations, including VHF-Lo; the OP mentioned CBS (RF 12); don't know if he's interested in the VHF-Lo stations (WRME and WOCK) too
  2. One UHF station (WLPD) coming in on RF 35 from a wildly different angle; if that's important it might be tough to point an antenna in a direction that can receive both it and the rest of the stations

Also, in the photo of the DB2e, is that a preamp? If the DB4e does deliver more signal and he's using the preamp with the DB4e too, then the preamp may be making things worse. His signals already look pretty strong. I'd try the DB4e without the preamp just in case. It may not help but it's easy enough to try.

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post #12 of 28 Old 12-20-2018, 04:16 PM
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IIRC, he already tried no preamp on the previous thread, and the results were worse.

Yes, his signals are very strong on the report, but his antenna is inside and the signals have to go through at least two walls in a commercial building. He is on the ground floor and there are trees outside in the signal path. After helping him on the previous thread, I doubt that overload is a problem.


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post #13 of 28 Old 12-20-2018, 06:46 PM
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OK. I was under the misimpression that this was a typical home or apartment, not a commercial building. So the actual signals are probably rather weaker than TVFool/RabbitEars predict.

In the previous thread he said WMAQ (on RF 29) was his "problem" signal. That's a somewhat weaker station according to the RabbitEars report, so once you attenuate it even more going through trees and two walls, you probably don't have much signal to work with.

It's a situation where you really need to get up on the roof, but being a commercial building, that's obviously not an option either.

This may be a situation requiring some creative thinking, perhaps ganging two DB2e's so each can be placed in a "hot spot." Of course once you do that, it can be pretty tricky ensuring the signals from both antennas stay in phase across the UHF band. And the best you get from two antennas is 3 dB extra. You may need four antennas (equivalent to a DB8e) to get enough gain - and then the phasing problem gets even touchier....

One last off-the-wall suggestion, though. Before sending the DB4e back, could he try tilting it? (Keeping the elements horizontal, of course.) I know that sounds crazy, but I'm thinking the signals are hitting the whole DB4e, but are out of phase - hence the worse performance. Perhaps the "hot zone" isn't vertical but instead is at some crazy skew within the room.

And even if that works, it may not be practical; but I'm just trying to get creative since no "ordinary" solution is likely to work (we're already trying outdoor antennas indoors).
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post #14 of 28 Old 01-02-2019, 07:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ADTech View Post
Contact customer service for RMA if ordered directly from us via the website or on the phone. Link is in post #7 above.



If you purchased from any other seller, follow their return policy and procedure.
UPDATE: Got my RMA number and wanted to wait until after the holidays.

If I understand this right, I have to pay to send this back.

I tried getting quotes from UPS, Fedex and USPS and the cheapest quote I got was $25 Priority Mail.

I paid $50 for this and there is no way in @#?*! I'm paying that much to ship it back to MO.

Nick

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post #15 of 28 Old 01-02-2019, 10:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncsercs View Post
I tried getting quotes from UPS, Fedex and USPS and the cheapest quote I got was $25 Priority Mail.

I paid $50 for this and there is no way in @#?*! I'm paying that much to ship it back to MO.

Sounds like you haven't shipped anything for a long time. The cost for individuals to ship anything has become outrageous. There are no inexpensive options anymore. Business gets big price breaks. I really think that the major shippers don't want to be in the individual to individual shipping business. I don't sell on Ebay anymore unless it's a high dollar value item. Who wants to pay $15 to ship a $25 item? I either recycle stuff if possible or throw it away.

Your choice comes down to: Do you want to be out $50 or be out $25?
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post #16 of 28 Old 01-03-2019, 11:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncsercs View Post
I paid $50 for this and there is no way in @#?*! I'm paying that much to ship it back to MO.
Antennas Direct will guarantee their product quality, but they can't guarantee that it will work in all locations. In some cases, at the discretion of the customer rep, if a customer is not satisfied with the antenna they will offer a 50% refund and let you keep the antenna. You don't have to return the antenna and they don't have to deal with a return. Try asking nicely.

If you keep the antenna, I would be curious to know how it would work outside your south window.



I've done this when the signal was 90 degrees from the window direction, but your signals are from the ENE, not E. In your case, the reflector would have to be quite large and further away from the building for the signals to clear the corner.

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post #17 of 28 Old 01-03-2019, 12:36 PM
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I had a retention offer sent out this morning.

Yes, shipping is horribly expensive, especially when the dimensions of the package place the parcel into the "Oversize" category as does a DB4e or a DB8e. We have no control over what UPS, Fedex, and the USPS charge retail customers.



I can certainly empathize. I shipped a package to New Hampshire last month to family members there. A 20x12x6 box that weighed 12# cost me $37. The grand-kids better like their Christmas gifts!
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post #18 of 28 Old 01-03-2019, 02:52 PM - Thread Starter
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That's not much of a 'return policy'. I feel really ripped off here. They might as well say 'no returns' while at it. This leaves a real bad taste in my mouth regarding AD.

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post #19 of 28 Old 01-03-2019, 03:43 PM
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That's not much of a 'return policy'.
What were the terms of their retention offer, Nick?

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post #20 of 28 Old 01-04-2019, 04:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncsercs View Post
UPDATE: Got my RMA number and wanted to wait until after the holidays.

If I understand this right, I have to pay to send this back.

I tried getting quotes from UPS, Fedex and USPS and the cheapest quote I got was $25 Priority Mail.

I paid $50 for this and there is no way in @#?*! I'm paying that much to ship it back to MO.
You SHOULD have asked for USPS GROUND shipping prices....looks like about half as much from IL to MO....and why should you even care if it takes a week or so to get there. [Ask about "Retail" vs "Return" types. FYI: Per Amazon, shipping Weight for DB-2e is 4-lbs and DB-4e is 6-lbs.]:
http://www.usps.com/business/prices.htm

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post #21 of 28 Old 01-05-2019, 12:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Every time I tried click-n-ship, Priority Mail was the only option given to me.

Don't care if it takes a week to get there.

I'll look into the site provided. Thanks!

Nick

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post #22 of 28 Old 01-05-2019, 12:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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What were the terms of their retention offer, Nick?
Has to be returned within 90 days on my dime. Amazon and eBay are better than that.

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post #23 of 28 Old 01-05-2019, 07:10 AM
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Has to be returned within 90 days on my dime. Amazon and eBay are better than that.
Guess I didn't make my question very clear. I didn't ask you about the return policy, I asked you what the retention offer terms were. Retention offer means you get to keep it. ADTech said in post #17 :
Quote:
Originally Posted by ADTech View Post
I had a retention offer sent out this morning.
Did you receive that offer?

If the terms of the retention offer were you get to keep it and get a 50% refund, that means you don't have to pay any shipping and get a good antenna for half price.

Then, you could keep it or sell it at a profit to someone else and let them eat the shipping cost.

If you don't like the Antennas Direct return policy, you shouldn't have bought it from them.


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post #24 of 28 Old 01-05-2019, 07:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncsercs View Post
Every time I tried click-n-ship, Priority Mail was the only option given to me.
You are doing better than I am with the USPS store. I tried to order some stamps for Christmas and their site said my address wasn't valid, so I couldn't complete my order. My address was OK the year before, so why is it suddenly no good?

They told me two months ago they were working on correcting the glitch; I'm still waiting.

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post #25 of 28 Old 01-05-2019, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbit73 View Post
Retention offer means you get to keep it. ADTech said in post #17 :

Did you receive that offer?

If the terms of the retention offer were you get to keep it and get a 50% refund, that means you don't have to pay any shipping and get a good antenna for half price.

Then, you could keep it or sell it at a profit to someone else and let them eat the shipping cost.
Yes, I got this. How do I invoke it? What do I need to do? Thanks!

Nick

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post #26 of 28 Old 01-05-2019, 04:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncsercs View Post
Yes, I got this. How do I invoke it? What do I need to do? Thanks!
I don't work for Antennas Direct, but I assume there is a ticket number assigned to your problem. Try calling 1-877-825-5572, ask them what to do, and tell them ADTech had a retention offer sent. Maybe ADTech will stop by again for clarification.

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post #27 of 28 Old 01-07-2019, 10:15 AM - Thread Starter
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UPDATE: Retention deal completed and partial refund sent.

Antenna is now on the bay and of course, the bottom feeders are there wanting it for next to nothing and shipped for free. What a bunch of parasites.

Nick

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post #28 of 28 Old 01-07-2019, 11:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncsercs View Post
UPDATE: Retention deal completed and partial refund sent.

Antenna is now on the bay and of course, the bottom feeders are there wanting it for next to nothing and shipped for free. What a bunch of parasites.
Thank you for the update. Good luck.

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