Dab Aerial

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by Steely Daniel, Jun 12, 2015.

  1. Steely Daniel

    Steely Daniel Read Only Funster

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    Hi All
    I would just like to tap into the wealth of knowledge available here again.
    I have a 2010 Ducato and I am fitting a double din head unit and this requires a DAB aerial. Reception in my area is not great, so I need a good aerial.
    The aerial splitter option will not do the job. The standard aerial is built into the mirror I think, and this is inadequate even for FM/AM so I cannot imagine that it will be adequate for DAB.
    Any advice on aerial type and also how to improve the standard aerial would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    I recently bought a new Sony DAB radio and windscreen stick-on DAB antenna for the Hymer.. and it's rubbish.. it picks up DAB only in strong signal areas.. basically I think because there isn't enough metal for a good ground plane on the Hymer.. . to say I'm disappointed is putting it mildly..

    I haven't resolved yet.. so look forward to others suggestions.. in the meantime, have a look on this site, they seem to know their stuff on which DAB antenna to choose..
    http://www.dabonwheels.co.uk/DAB_car_aerials.html
     
  3. Techno

    Techno Funster Life Member

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    Works OK for me but yes it does need the chassis connection on the cab.
    Shown fitted on Left Hand drive hence upside down on passenger side
    [​IMG]
     
  4. ivorantony

    ivorantony Funster

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    I used a kinetic roof aerial from dabonwheels, on there website it gives a list of aerials and there performance, I bit the bullet and brought the best performing roof aerial, it took a bit of work to fit to my composite roof of my A class but the reception is nothing short of amazing!
    I can receive the stations I want practically anywhere in the UK including west coast of Scotland, that includes Radio 1/2/3/4/5
    LBC/Smooth/magic/heart,
    Also the FM /AM is also excellent, I needed extension leads for both the DAB and FM/ AM that Dabonwheels supplied to reach the radio,
    It's imperative that a good ground plane is fitted under the aerial for decent reception,
     
  5. GAVLAD

    GAVLAD Funster

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    Hi
    I had this dilemma when I wanted to upgrade my radio from the standard fiat version.
    Firstly the double DIN.
    When you take out the single slot radio, there's sometimes a bar across the top of the old radio, this just comes out. Mine had a slot cubby hole for cd's etc - this just pulls out. You've then got your slot for your double DIN.

    Secondly, your standard aerial - the Fiat one housed within the passenger wing mirror is crap in my view. Ok if your in a city but reception elsewhere not so good. I discussed this with Autosound of Bradford. They do a lot of work on motorhomes and go to a lot of shows. They suggested fitting a new aerial in the side of the N/S front wing.
    This screws off, so handy when in storage.
    Lastly, my radio unit is DAB.
    I've bought (I got one included inside the new radio box but not amplified) a DAB amplified aerial. This sticks on the inside of the windscreen near the passenger sun visor.
    Everything I got was Blaupunkt and bought from Autosound. The have a direct sales dept listed under blaupunktdirect.

    I was sceptical about the dash windscreen mount aerial, but I've been proven wrong as it does work.
    As does the wing mounted aerial.
    The only issue with DAB is that it can loose signal and then regain signal whilst you're driving. Apparently, due to area, this is normal but will improve as it becomes more popular. So I'm told.

    We looked at fitting an aerial to a plate on the roof, but glad I went with Autosounds advice with the wing mount.

    I asked them to leave the original aerial intact but unconnected and then if I sell the vehicle, the options there to reconnect it.

    The only downside I've experienced is the steering wheel control.
    I had to buy a new controller unit as the Fiat original unit would not work with the Blaupunkt radio unit. Worked fine with the Fiat head unit.
    The new unit is experiencing a frequency problem between the steering wheel controls and the new radio, which means I can't forward a track or move forward s channel - only back/repeat. Volume works ok.
    They are running tests on this and I'm awaiting their outcome.
    Other than that, all great.

    Ps, before anyone suggests, I've no affiliation to Autosound, only that they're local and have been excellent.
     
  6. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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  7. RowleyBirkinQC

    RowleyBirkinQC Funster

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    We recently installed a DAB radio and used the standard windscreen DAB aerial from Halfords in our van. Only used once in anger so far, a trip up and down the M4/M5 from Berks to deepest darkest Somerset (well, Taunton), signal was perfect all the way though...
     
  8. ivorantony

    ivorantony Funster

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    I used this one on mine,
    http://www.dabonwheels.co.uk/Kinetic_DRA-6003_FM-AM_DAB_car_aerial.html
    I drill a hole through the roof into the wardrobe to fit the aerial and used copper tape with adhesive on one side radiating out from the bottom of the aerial, one run of the tape is terminated at the chassis,

    After fitting Two window mounts and two conventional type aerials with splitter and amplified booster with totally zero improvement I was so Pi--ed off so as I said bit the bullet and very pleased with the results!

    The Kinectic aerial sits below the Sat dome so doesn't increase my overall height but could be fitted on the side if needed,
     
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  9. Steely Daniel

    Steely Daniel Read Only Funster

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    Thanks for the advice and the photo. This is probably the easiest option and the one I would choose to do but I am not sure that it will be adequate in my location.
     
  10. Steely Daniel

    Steely Daniel Read Only Funster

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    Thanks. Great advice. I have realised that the best signal will be achieved with a roof mounted aerial but I have an aversion to putting another hole in the roof in the van. Probably showing my ignorance here, but presumably there is insulation in the roof. Was the threaded shaft of the aerial long enough to reach the underside of the insulation? Could I also ask where you can get the copper tape?
     
  11. Steely Daniel

    Steely Daniel Read Only Funster

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    Thank you for a really informative response. Lots of really useful info. I am thinking that trying the windscreen mounted aerial is going to be worth a try.
     
  12. ivorantony

    ivorantony Funster

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    Yes there is insulation so I cut it back enough to tighten the lower lock nut, the adhesive copper tape is available from gardens centres,
    It's used around tops of flower pots to stop snails I beleave,

    You don't need a great amount, luckily for me there is a box that has the sat dome controller at the rear of my wardrobe so it was easy to hide the aerial leads and copper tape,
    As I said before one run of tape goes down the rear wardrobe wall to just above the truma boiler before changing to normal wire attached to the water tank frame that in turn is attached to the chassis,
    Hope that makes sense?
     
  13. Steely Daniel

    Steely Daniel Read Only Funster

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    Hi. Yes all makes sense. I had never come across the copper tape before and certainly would not have looked for it in a garden centre! Thanks again.
     
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