TV Antennas and Signal Amplifiers

Calling an antenna a "digital antenna" is at best a misnomer, at worst, dishonest. Antennas have always been either VHF, UHF or a combination of both. In fact, digital TV is more sensitive than analogue and in some cases where people had strong antenna systems for analogue TV it may actually cause problems with signal over saturation which can cause all sorts of problems.

Typical Antennas we use for Cairns

What sort of antenna is right for you largely depend on where you are located. Antennas are directional, and things like a large hills, trees or buildings in the the way of your "line of sight' to a transmitter can effect your reception. These are the main types antennas we use for Cairns:

Long Periodic Combo Antenna

VHF/UHF 32 Element Log Periodic Combo Antenna

The Log Periodic Array is our most popular antenna for digital TV. It provides a good balance of signal gain across all channels as well as providing good deflection of multi path signals and a very good  BER (Bit Error Rate). VHF > 8dB Gain, UHF > 11dB Gain.

High Gain Low/BER Combo Antenna

Ideal for places where reception from Bellenden Ker is lacking.Max. Gain: B3=7dB, UHF=11dB - AV F⁄B (Front-to-Back) Ratio: B3=13dB, UHF=21dB. Heavy duty design and quality Aust made Workmanship.

VHF Yagi Antenna

High quality, premium VHF YAGI Antenna ideal for reception in places where reception from Bellenden Ker is marginal. Will need to be used is conjunction with a UHF antenna so you can get SBS. For signal black spot areas only. Forward Gain: 11-12 dB Front to Back Ratio: 15-17 dB

UHF Yagi

UHF Phased Array

UHF Yagi Antenna

Great for UHF areas where you have line of sight to a transmitter. Low Bit Error Rate with a gain of 13.5dB. This antenna is good for all UHF Transmitters. Heavy Duty construction on all components with a front to back ratio of greater than 16dB.

UHF Phased Array Antenna

A high quality, premium phased array antenna is designed for installations where there is low UHF signal or where signal is effected by trees or hilly terrain. A great antenna for the Saddle Mountain transmitter. Forward Gain: 13.5 dB Front to Back Ratio: 16-21 dB

UHF Fago Rhombus Antenna

  • Superior Gain (16 dB)
  • High front to back ratio (25dB)
  • Engineered and tested for the best possible DVB-T reception.
  • Rugged construction
  • PCB F Connector Balun – Low loss secure connection
  • Vertical or Horizontal Polarity capable
  • UV Stabilised and temperature tolerant plastics with extra strength and durability
  • Heavy Duty U Bolt and Clamp
  • Windload 98 N @ 150 km/h

They don't come much better than this. For superior signal performance this is the ultimate UHF antenna. It will work with all Cairns UHF transmitters giving the cleanest, and strongest signal available.

Mast Head Amplifiers or Signal Boosters

Masthead Signal Amplifier
Power Supply

Amplifiers are great for houses with marginal reception, or houses with multiple outlets or particularly long cable runs. (A good reason to use quality cable.) A masthead amplifier is usually mounted on your antenna mast and will boost your signal by as much as 42 decibels. It is usually powered by a transformer plugged into one of your TV sockets inside the house. These signal amplifiers are far superior to the $69 jobs found at electronic discounters; and they work for all outlets as well..

However, a signal amplifier is not a magical 'fix it all' for a poor quality antenna. It only amplifies the signal that the antenna already receives, so if the antenna signal is not up to scratch, an amplifier will only amplify a bad signal. In other words it only boosts the signal in the cable, not the antenna.

The key to getting a good digital signal is:

  1. Selecting the correct antenna that will capture the most signal from the right transmitter.
  2. The positioning of the antenna to obtain maximum gain with low data errors.
  3. The cable and connections.

Antennas themselves should last at least 10-15 years dependent on conditions (and in Cairns they're tough), and over time things like oxidization of the elements, rusting of the rivets and deterioration of exposed cable can all effect the performance of your antenna.

Inferior quality cable installed over 20 years ago is also an issue in many Cairns households. Many times we find that replacing cable will fix many reception issues. (CAV only use the highest quality RG6 Quad Shield Coaxial cable by the way.)

Cairns A/V specialises in installation of TV antenna systems. We use only the highest quality materials and are equipped with the latest test equipment. This ensures that the installation will be guaranteed to provide the highest quality reception as well as a reliable service for years to come.

All our antenna installs carry a 3 year warranty.

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