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Poor Digital Reception and Picture

Thriller27

Active Member
New home. Plugged the existing aerial into the back of the tv and searched for channels. To my surprise (surprise because we didn't think the house had digital reception) the tv picked up several digital channels but here's the thing, the picture is poor. Similar to a youtube video on the lowest settings. Also BBC1 & BBC2 have stuttering issues.

Is there a way to rectify this issue? I'm hoping there a box that'll boost my signal and give me access to hd channels. Any help or direction I'm more than willing to take here.
 

Gavtech

Administrator
Check that an aerial is actually installed.

Quite often in new-builds, the aerial wiring and outlets are installed - but no aerial.
Cables are terminated in the loft usually, awaiting an installer.
 

Thriller27

Active Member
Hey Gavtech and thanks for the quick response.

It's not a new build and the aerial does lead to the outside of the house C4 and channels related such as film 4, 4+1 etc have a much steadier reception with no jitters etc. I've also got itv 4, deja vu and a few other channels I didn't expect to have without a freview box etc.
 

TJT1

Distinguished Member
Is there an aerial at the outside end of the cable then. Check the plug on the TV end for short circuits (a bit of the outer braiding touching the inner conductor) if you can get some freeview channels, you should be able to get all of the ones the 'local' transmitter is transmitting as you obviously have a freeview TV,
 

Old Bones

Active Member
New home. Plugged the existing aerial into the back of the tv and searched for channels. To my surprise (surprise because we didn't think the house had digital reception) the tv picked up several digital channels but here's the thing, the picture is poor.

You can check what your reception might be like by either going to DigitalUK's predictor, or if you go to UKFree.TV and put your poscode into the site, it will bring up a load of links, including the DigitalUk's website.

Remember that just because there is a aerial on the roof, it does not mean that there will be a great signal - location, terrain are big factors, but alos the condition of the aerial system. The whole thing might be hanging on by a thread, and aerials can take a battering. Also remember that aerial systems can be put up by anyone, and a bodge job can often work surprisingly well, until the whole thing is suddenly kaput. And its worth checking what transmitter you've picked up - many tuners start at a low number and work their way up - which means you might end up with the wrong transmitter.

If your getting some channels fine, but not others, it might be the cables that are damaged - you can get OK reception on some muxs, whereas others are toast. ATV tells you loads of stuff about aerials, etc, and it might be something as simple as replacing a lead.

Good luck.
 

ObsidianEclipse

Active Member
Is their an aerial socket on the wall? Sometimes they use an unshielded socket box or a stray bit of braiding touches the core of the coaxial cable. It's worth unscrewing and checking if possible. Also, if you have any hdmi cables try and keep them away from the coaxial as they often cause problems. Personally I always use metal shielded antenna sockets and f-connectors upto point of connection to the TV/digibox.
 

Rodders53

Distinguished Member
Location (town/village name) will help to know roughly what reception might be like in the area and advise based on that.

A photo of the aerial and cable(s) from it may help --- include any pole and boxes on the pole/wall into which the cables go.

Very frequently the movers <helpfully>, when packing, take away the masthead amplifier power supply unit, which is needed to make the system work. IF you have a TV or PVR with an 'antenna power' option in the setup menus then setting that to ON may bring the amplifier to life. (Antenna = aerial)
 

Thriller27

Active Member
Hi guys

Really appreciate the feedback here. I've checked and their isn't an aerial on my roof. The cable comes through the wall but I can't seem to find an aerial looking from across the street or from the back garden. I really don't want to have to pay virgin or some other cable company for basic tv package. Ughhhhhh...
 

Rodders53

Distinguished Member
Check in the loft (attic) space??
If you find one in there look for an amplifier box connected to it and see if the previous occupants switched it off to save electricity / ensure it could not cause a fire.

Owner or Renter? (Landlord may help?) An aerial can be cheap enough to fit (even professionally) depending on LOCATION and signal levels {that it almost works with just cable attached to TV suggests fairly strong signals}.

Planning Your TV Installation is worth a read and the rest of that site has a wealth of information.
 

TJT1

Distinguished Member
The cable comes through the wall but I can't seem to find an aerial
Can you not follow the routing of the coax up the side of the house to see where it goes?
 

Thriller27

Active Member
Strange update

I am now watching BBC1 and BBC2 without issue. The difference between today and when I first made this post is the weather. It was raining hard at the time I made this thread which leads me to believe it was a weather issue.

I'm not sure how to proceed. I think I need to call an installer but finding a good one with a reputable business is the issue. I'm writing this while watching fake Britain on BBC which perhaps makes me extra weary.
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
If you have no aerial in the loft or on the roof. You must be in a really strong signal area (the unterminated coax cables are acting as a crude aerial). Post a postcode of a public building close to where you are so it's possible to check an estimate of the field strength It may be just as simple as finding where the coax cable goes to (usually in a loft) and simply connecting a proper aerial to it).

Rain doesn't affect freeview that much, though if the cable end is in a loft (most likely) , starting with a tiny signal, the small attenuation from wet roof tiles might make a big difference.

The end is probably hidden under loft insulation.

Basically ask the builder/estate agent, this sort of information should have been in the information you should have been given already.
 

Thriller27

Active Member
You guys will laugh at this. I checked my attic and found no antenna and as before didn't see an antenna on the roof.

But I overlooked something. A satellite dish on the side of the house. Obviously I'm not getting satellite tv so considered it obsolete and a non factor in the issue. But that dish is the only receptor I can find so that must be it, right?
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
You guys will laugh at this. I checked my attic and found no antenna and as before didn't see an antenna on the roof.

But I overlooked something. A satellite dish on the side of the house. Obviously I'm not getting satellite tv so considered it obsolete and a non factor in the issue. But that dish is the only receptor I can find so that must be it, right?

Same comment as above, a satellite dish will not get you any sort of terrestrial signal, however as I said before if you live in a really strong signal area the coax cabling alone may give you some sort of reception. The coax connections from a dish will terminate in a connector (A f connector) that screws onto the socket. Unless you have converted the f connection to a belling lee standard TV socket it won't connect to your TV.

If you have a working satellite dish, there is lots of options to get reception, all of which require a separate satellite receiver, unless your TV has a built in satellite tuner.

IF your TV signal is as strong as your posts suggest (a postcode of a public building close to where you live would help), you just might be one of the vey few that can use an indoor aerial to get digital TV.
 

grahamlthompson

In memoriam
Post code nearby is DA17 6DF

You are only 18 km from Crystal Palace, the DTG reception predictor shows a really strong signal on all Freeview Mux.

A simple log periodic mounted in the loft should work perfectly provided you can point it through the roof slates rather than a gable end wall. Look at neighbours aerials for the direction. Compass bearing is 243 degrees (West South West).


ATV`s Choice Of Aerials for digital TV
 

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Thriller27

Active Member
I had to look up a "log periodic" because I'm unfamiliar with the terminology. They seem really cheap (first google hit was £14) but I am not qualified to install that in the attic. Also the access to the Attic is through the bathroom. So I need an installer and I guess this is the right place to ask if there are any reputable aerial installation services the forum could recommend me?

Also would indoor digital tv antennas be an option? Simple plug and play setup if my reception area is decent.
 

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