Freeview tuning trouble....

Discussion in 'Freeview & YouView' started by themightydave, Jan 2, 2018.

  1. themightydave

    themightydave
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    Hi all, infrequent poster but have always had good advice here so....

    Recently binned off Sky in favour of all services from BT, now trying to get the YouView box up and running but have had trouble getting the Freeview channels.
    Unfortunately the TV is mounted on the opposite wall to the aerial socket, I confirmed the signal at socket is good by linking up 4 aerial leads like a tightrope across the room tuning in - sixty something channels were found. All good I thought, but not wanting to have to perform a limbo dance when crossing the room I went to Robert Dyas and bought the following extension kit so I could run the wire along the skirting board / around the door frame.

    Vivanco DIY TV Extension Kit | Robert Dyas

    Having done this & re-tuned now have no channels found. Back to the 4 connected 1m cables and channels found again. Tried the long cable with a signal booster but still nothing. borrowed another long cable from a relative & no joy.

    Would there be much difference is the strength of signal carried by a single 11m cable compared to the 4 odd ones joined together? Is there a 'higher grade' of cable available which would better carry the signal?
    The only answer I can see is to resite the TV to the wall with the socket but really don't want to as this will involve a full redecorate that the wife will be keen on but I'm not up for...

    Any advice would be appreciated!
     
  2. Clem_Dye

    Clem_Dye
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    The Vivanco cable could be faulty. Can you try it somewhere else to see if it does actually work? The kit looks to have a passive splitter in it, which can cut signal strength, and the surface mount aerial socket is not brilliant quality. You mention getting only 60 channels -- that's way down on the normal count of 170 odd, unless you're only getting a Freeview-Lite service from a relay.

    I'd be inclined to buy 12m or so of decent quality dual-screened aerial cable, with the appropriate male and female connectors and route that to the desired location, testing first. Failing that, call a local aerial installer. The fact that you get some channels with the daisy-chained cable setup suggests that there's either a cable fault in the new extension, or you've shorted the cable connections together somewhere.

    Clem
     
  3. Gavtech

    Gavtech
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    Another point - Do whatever needs to be done to get as many channels tuned in as possible.

    Once you have tuned... DO NOT do a retune under any circumstances.
    If you try another wiring configuration and channels are lost, all the channel placeholders are maintained and will return if you sort out whatever the signal supply problem is... but if you retune whilst in a 'poor signal' mode, all the channels are lost again until you can retune with a good signal.
     
  4. Rodders53

    Rodders53
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    Location? What predicted reception do you have? Which transmitter(s)? Digital UK - Coverage checker (tick the 'detailed reception' box to get full info).

    Once tuned in and having good reception from the main socket, you should not retune the device again as it will make finding the fault with your long cable install more difficult.

    Cable in itself doesn't lose too much signal, although the cheap and 'nasty' stuff you've bought is far from the best... It seems most likely to me that an error has been made in making off the plugs... How to wire a Belling-Lee connector and How To Attach / Wire Up Plugs & Aerials show how to do it. (The first is 'best practice', the second a more pragmatic diy solution as few people con solder well!)

    Satellite, Television, FM, DAB, Aerial, Coaxial Cable, Plugs, Sockets, Connectors & Leads is worth a read... WF100/PF100 (foam filled copper centre, copper braid and copper foil is best).

    However, the signal level from the aerial may be close to the digital cliff edge... so some readings from the You View box signal meter on all the available multiplex frequencies may provide some clues (use the 4 x 1m cables to do this if necessary).
     
  5. themightydave

    themightydave
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    Thanks for all the responses, very helpful stuff.
    Having checked our coverage we should be getting good reception from the Mendip transmitter. I am reasonably handy on the DIY front so fairly confident with my fitting of the connector.

    I may well get an aerial man in, save the kids form learning some new bad words when I try to fix it!
    Obviously there is a fair variety in what is available but does anyone have a ballpark figure of what I might be expecting to pay for a new aerial to be fitted?

    Thanks again!
     
  6. Clem_Dye

    Clem_Dye
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    A decent aerial installer could charge a couple of hundred pounds. There are plenty of cowboys out there, very much caveat emptor.

    Clem
     
  7. Rodders53

    Rodders53
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    Is the current aerial known to be faulty (or damaged)? Where is it? (Loft, gable end, chimney). What does it look like?

    Location? (Mendip reception can be tricky in some places - close to the mast, especially.) It is also received at a great distance from the site, requiring above average aerials and maybe masthead amplification.

    Still worth double-checking the terminations IMHO ... a stray tiny whisker of woven braid screen shorting - or even just close to - the centre pin can wreak havoc! DO also check the main living room socket (or plug) is made off properly, it could make all the difference.

    The fact that the 4x1m cables worked to give 60+ channels (Freeview reckon 70 + 15 HD + 30 radio) suggests that all might not be lost. Although the fact your 'borrowed long lead' nor amplifier worked is not encouraging.

    Each plug-socket connection has a signal loss... 1dB is a typical allowance - so 4dB on the daisy-chain of leads; but 10m of cheap cable is only about 2dB of loss plus the connection making 3dB... (and better quality cable would be 1.5dB loss).

    As for a new aerial installation: Read this site first to give yourself enough knowledge in what is required: ATV`s Choice Of Aerials for digital TV and what Justin (the site/shop owner) recommends... I generally agree with him and I was paid good money to advise the trade and public on TV and Radio reception matters in the past.

    AVOID contract aerials with a pressed aluminium plate for its reflector. Aerials, TV Aerial and Digital Aerial
     
  8. A1944

    A1944
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    A point to check with the cable around the skirting board is that you didn't accidently trap it under something, a staple perhaps, and damage it.
     
  9. themightydave

    themightydave
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    Hi A1944 - I haven't tacked it to the wall or anything & was working in a clear space so don't think(!) I could have damaged the lead.

    Rodders - Thanks for all the good advice, the aerial is gabel end fixed, above roof height. I believe it was originally in the loft when the house was built (1990) but the original owner moved it to an outside fixing fairly soon after that. Looks very much like the below pic

    [​IMG]

    I'm approx 30 miles north east of the Mendip Transmitter, website says reception should be good but you shouldn't believe everything you read!
    I've had the socket plate off the wall and the connection there looks good, I will double check my wiring of the terminations, it's not beyond my abilities to have botched it!
     
  10. grahamlthompson

    grahamlthompson
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    Your aerial is mounted for a vertically polarised transmitter like relay transmitters.

    Mendip is horizontally polarised it needs to be rotated 90 degrees so the reflector is vertical.

    eg Like the picture of the XB10 here

    ATV`s Choice Of Aerials for digital TV


    You could be losing between about 11-35dB of your signal.

    Aerials, TV Aerial and Digital Aerial
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2018

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