How Can We Improve The Digital TV Reception In Our RV?
How to Improve the Digital TV Reception In Your RV
I have a dual TV tuner (analog/digital) on my RV TV. I have found that the signal gets interrupted by numerous devices. My wife uses a portable DVD player to watch movies. It completely wipes out the digital signal even if the DVD player is running on battery. The laptop pc also wipes it out. I suspect nearby RVs using satellite wipe it out. Have seen helicopters flying over wipe it out. I'm talking complete wipeout here not just a screwed up picture.
We have a Winegard amplified antenna. Do not have this problem when using analog tuning. Looks like digital is going to be pretty bad for reception in the RV world. I have also talked to many people having similar problems using digital TVs or converter boxes.
Are there any filters or something I can install to correct this problem?
ANSWER: Important Update: Since I answered this question Winegard has released a brand new antenna called the Winegard Rayzar Air antenna. This multi-direcional antenna was designed from the ground up by Winegard to maximize signal reception of digital TV channels, and expands the coverage area to provide maximum channel reception with less aiming or pointing. Watch the video below to learn more:
If you currently have a Sensar Antenna on your RV you can buy a Rayzar AIR Retrofit HD TV Antenna
that you install on your existing system. If you have a different antenna or no antenna at all than you will have to buy the Full Rayzar AIR HD TV Antenna system
. The Complete kit includes the amplified antenna with the boom and lift assembly, the 12-volt power supply and interior control parts, 20’ and 6’ lengths of coax cable and the mounting hardware.
The SensarPro TV Signal Strength Meter
mentioned in the video is an optional accessory.
Winegard also makes an antenna called the Rayzar Automatic Amplified HD TV Antenna
that automatically finds channels in your area and rotates to maximize signal quality. It is a dual band VHF/UHF antenna that utilizes a state-of-the-art amplifier to increase range and channels while reducing the chance for pixilation and dropouts. The antenna is enclosed in an ultra-sleek, attractive dome, all elements are protected to withstand harsh outdoor conditions.End Of Update
I am sorry to say that a filter may not be the solution to your problem. I believe that your problem is due to weak signal strength getting to your TV. When it comes to digital TV signals you either get the signal or you don't. With a weak analog TV signal you sometimes get a snowy or wavy picture and poor sound. With a weak digital TV signal, you will either get a frozen picture or no picture or sound at all.
The fact that DVD players and Laptop computers are interfering with your TV's picture only confirms that the Digital TV signals you are receiving are too weak to maintain a picture.
I am going to assume that you have already checked all the cable connections in your RV to make sure that the cables are not loose. This would include going on the roof of your RV
and checking to make sure that there is no damage to the cable going into your antenna. Loose or damaged cable can also cause the signal loss that you are experiencing.
You are going to have to buy a signal amplifier. The one I personally recommend is the PCT 1-PORT BI-DIRECTIONAL TV SIGNAL BOOSTER
. The reason I recommend this booster is because it is highly rated by people who own it. It boosts both Digital and Analog signals, It is easy to install and can be used on systems that use an antenna to receive signals as well as cable TV systems. It also supports pay-per view and video on demand. The most important factor is that it can improve signal strength by up to 32 times (15 dB). If this does not get you a better signal then nothing else will.
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I am going to assume that you have a video switch box on your RV that has buttons or knobs that allow you choose different sources for your RV's TV; such as antenna, cable, DVD player, satellite etc. I am going to also assume that you have more than one TV in your RV.
Since you have an antenna that is amplified you are not going to be able to hook up the signal booster to the cable coming out of your antenna and going into the Video Switch Box. That cable probably has 12 volts DC running through it and could damage the signal booster. Instead, you are going to have to hook up a signal booster to the cable running out of the video switch box going to the TV. In this situation, you would need one signal booster for each TV in your RV. I would suggest that you only get one booster and try it on one of your TVs if the results are satisfactory you can always get another one for the other TV.
The signal booster should be installed right at the Video Switch Box. You will need one extra piece of coax cable to perform the installation. Disconnect the cable from the back of the Video Switch Box that is going to the TV that you are going to use. Attach that cable to the TV out port on the signal booster. Now hook up your short length of Coax cable to the antenna in port on the video booster and the TV out port on the Video Switch Box. The video booster needs to be plugged into a 120 volt electric outlet to power the signal amplifier. You need to repeat the above process for each TV. The reason you are putting the booster at the Video Switch Box is because the closer the Video Booster is to the antenna the better it will perform.
Like I said if this does not resolve the problem for you then I am not sure what else will. If any of our visitors have any suggestions for you they can add them to this page by clicking on the add a comment link near the bottom of this page.