Antenna / Aerial Choice Confusion

Discussion in 'TV & Satellite' started by Red13x, Apr 22, 2011.

  1. Red13x

    Red13x Read Only Funster

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    Hi everyone!

    My husband and I are fairly new to camping and are looking for a replacement antenna / aerial for our camper-van. I have been googling and looking on eBay for ideas, but I cannot get my head round all the choices out there.

    My requirements, I think are fairly simple: It needs to pick up digital and analogue and needs to stay attached to the roof. I also want something that works wherever we hook up - no adjustments or further setting up!

    I have seen the omnidirectional Status 315 which looks like it fits these requirements, but I have seen some poor reviews for this in low signal areas (which we're likely to be in since we like to holiday in the countryside). Further to this I have seen the 530 and 540, both of which seem better, but from their descriptions it looks like there is a lot to set-up when you get to site.

    I don't mind what brand I get, apparently Status are very good, so long as it works well and doesn't leave a massive dent in my pocket.

    Any advise would be appreciated! :thumb:

    Hayley
     
  2. laneside

    laneside Funster

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    Ooops lets see what everyone else says but from our experience what you are looking for does not exisit as of yet

    They all need twiddling and pointing and even more so to get digital.

    You will also find that you have to re-tune your television to get the best out of it when you change locations.

    An alternative maybe an automatic satellite dish but brace yourself they do not come cheap.
     
  3. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    as Laneside said....no such thing as yet !

    even with the omni directional aerial you still HAVE to retune to the local transmitter.

    different areas are served by different transmitters and all are on different frequencies.

    omni aerials are ok if you are close enough to a transmitter but are extrememly hit and miss affairs.

    a good directional aerial will get good results but, i say again, you MUST retune the TV regardless of the aerial or anologue/digi signal.

    by the way....welcome to the funhouse
     
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  4. Red13x

    Red13x Read Only Funster

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    Ah! If it doesn't exist then that might be why I can't find it! :Laughing:

    Okay... With the 530/540's, it states:

    "Firstly, raising and lowering the antenna dome and adjusting its direction can all be performed in the warmth and comfort of indoors. Then simply turning the folding winder changes the antennas' polarity from horizontal to vertical. Units have the benefit of being angle adjustable, by up to 15 degrees, to allow level fixing on a sloping surface - important if your mounting surface is not horizontal."

    I don't mind the idea of adjusting the height and direction using a winder, sounds simple enough. I think I am mainly confused after this part. How do you know which direction is the right direction?

    I would hope we'd find a 0 degrees pitch, but if we were slightly off level, do you have to get on top of the van to make sure the antenna is horizontal?

    Thankfully, I am more than happy with re-tuning the TV wherever we go, it is the one thing I am 100% comfortable with knowing how to do! :Blush:

    Hayley
     
  5. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    no need to climb on the roof.....the aerial doesnt mind if its not exactly vertical.

    as for direction.....simple look at house aerials or those on the vans around you....dont rely on this 100%, i've seen many van aerials pointing in different directions on the same site....houses are a far better guide.

    horizontal/vertical......again simply look at othe aerials and see if they are up/down or sideways.
    if you cant get a picture then turn the handle to change polarity and try again.

    digital usually requires a pretty accurate directional alignment but if you tune to anologue (while we still have it....its being phased out rapadly) you should be able to tune in digi as well.

    you soon get used to directing and tuning.
     
  6. laneside

    laneside Funster

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    If you get a picture you are in the right general direction and only requires tweaking. If no picture then it may be down to frustrating trial and error.

    Your best bet , unless you are very isolated is to look which way someone else is pointing and copy that.

    As for climbing on the roof do not worry as this is not required all with the Omnis can be done from inside.

    Just as an aid there is a digital finder that you can connect into the aerial wire which shows the strength of signal to aid alignment I am sure some one will be along to tell you more about these


    Just one other thing if you prefer isolation as we do then ensure you have some books on board as you will invariably land in spots where tele is just not obtain able
     
  7. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    bought one from B&Q....£14

    £14 wasted.....tried it at home....only showed full strength signal no matter where i pointed the aerial, but i can see the transmitter from my house.:Doh:

    tried it at Newark show, disconnected it and threw it in the bin.....rubbish item but possible mine was faulty :Blush:
     
  8. Red13x

    Red13x Read Only Funster

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    Thanks pappajohn and laneside!

    We have a decent selection of books and dvds on board for this very reason! Our current aerial is appallingly bad!

    I think I am happier with the sound of the directional aerial as this looks like the best bet for a decent signal! I will do as you say any copy others etc. Do you have any ideas of a decent brand? Like I said at first, I keep seeing Status being highly recommended but are there others which are brilliant and a good price!?!

    I do like the overall sound of the Status 540 me thinks! Or am I just going for the latest one thinking it is the best?:Wink:

    If I struggle with getting a signal after trying a few sites I will look into getting one of those digital signal finders!
     
  9. MikeandCarolyn

    MikeandCarolyn Read Only Funster

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    As Alan (Laneside) said-what you really want is an automatic satellite system-Oyster/Camos or Kathrein -but they aint cheap.:BigGrin:

    Mike
     
  10. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    status have a good reputation and are very popular.

    nearly all motorhome aerials need a booster box which you should already have for your existing aerial, so should save you a few quid.

    whichever you choose, get a 'through the roof' aerial or it will need attaching to clamps and brackets every time its needed.

     
  11. Red13x

    Red13x Read Only Funster

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    Thanks! I have just had a look and the automatic satellites are way out of my budget.

    The TV I have in the camper can tune into analogue and digital, so I think a directional aerial is my best bet at the moment. Maybe a satellite for our next camper! :Laughing:

    I'll look more into the specs for the Status 540!
     
  12. aba

    aba

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    hi and welcome to the nuthouse
    from what i gather the old twisted coat hanger type were about the best you could get at one time they certainly knocked the sox of the flying saucer type status aerials just fit and forget.
    try here.
    http://www.maxview.co.uk/products/info_B2344.html

    or failing that just get a sat dome and forget about terrestrial.
     
  13. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    Mmmm!!!! satellite, no re-tuning but extremely sensitive to direction and elevation...unless its fully automatic.
    just 1" out of alignment and no chance of a picture.

    saying that, i wouldnt be without mine. :thumb:

    my last van had a wind-up dish on the roof and was very easy to set up.
    my RV doesnt have one YET ! so i use a domestic house dish on a camera tripod sat on the ground....works for me :thumb:
     
  14. Loujess

    Loujess Read Only Funster

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    Hi Red. You sound a bit like us. We have a Status on our van and when we were at Milestones site at Newark we had a lovely picture but have since had a 'Wing' aerial fitted. Still no better. I suspect the only way out of this will be to get a satellite dish with a box and sat finder package. Road Pro were really helpful at Newark but we haven't though any more about it since then. Let us know how you get on. :BigGrin::BigGrin:

    Ivy
     
  15. Johns_Cross_Motorhomes

    Johns_Cross_Motorhomes Trader - Motorhome & Accessory Sales

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  16. wivvy's dad

    wivvy's dad Read Only Funster

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    Throw the telly away, and read a book





    :BigGrin::BigGrin::BigGrin:
     
  17. mfh27748

    mfh27748 Read Only Funster

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    try looking at www.wolfbane.com type in your postcode get yourself a compass

    job done
     
  18. Red13x

    Red13x Read Only Funster

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    Thanks everyone! I will let you know how I get on. :Laughing:
     
  19. johnpengers

    johnpengers Funster

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    This worked for us whilst caravanning and with our first Rv.If you've got sky at home its a doddle to set up(99%)of the time anyway and the picture is crystal clear and exactly the same programmes as at home.Our rv has a auto satalite set up but the tripod etc is just as good.:thumb:

    Regards, John P
     
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