DIY: Installing a CDR-King’s P280-Outdoor TV Antenna

It’s been a while that i haven’t purchased a product from CDR-King multi-media store as a protest of the dismal performance of their products. However, from time-to-time i visited the store to check on some weird if not interesting or amazing gadgets. CDR-King’s line of products are full of oddity-either the product performs below par or it works well even at a cheap price.

Lately, i came across the store’s Outdoor TV Antenna with a price ranging from P250 – P450. This is quite cheaper than Baron antenna or any other antenna designs sold at more than P500 in any electronics stores.

So, i settled and gave a try for this 280-peso Skyra Outdoor Antenna GT-60N inside this very compact box.

 

The box contains 2 sets of directors, a UHF Dipole antenna, a VHF Dipole antenna, an antenna main boom, and some screws and bolts.I also bought earlier, a set of Precision Screwdrivers also from CDR-King which i used in assembling the antenna.

 

Assembling is easy by just following the installation manual.Just be familiar with the markings on the antenna boom.

 

The antenna boom is made of plastic material with a steel part for the pipe holder. The RF connector input jack is appropriately placed in between the UHF and VHF dipoles.

 

The longest element in this antenna design is the VHF folded dipole with a total length of 29-inches. It is placed 3.5-inches from the 5-inch UHF bowtie dipole. According to hdtvprimer, folded dipole antenna is designed to solve an efficiency problem while the bowtie dipole antenna has a wider bandwidth. These dipoles are considered driver elements in the antenna system and the only ones connected to the cable from the TV set.

 

The two directors in the design are measuring 4-inches and 3.5-inches and placed 4-inches apart.

 

A clamp for attaching the antenna boom to a pipe, an RF connector, and a waterproof cap to be placed at the RF connector jack to protect the connection from rain. Screws are provided in the box.

 

The result is a compact TV antenna suitable for VHF, UHF, and FM broadcast signals.

Specifications:

Frequency range: VHF 88-230Mhz (5-12 channel)

UHF 470-862Mhz (21-69 channel)

Polarization: Horizontal

FEATURES: (according to the manufacturer)

  • SMT technology
  • Stable performance of excellent reception for all Digital TV broadcast signals, analog signals and radio programs.
  • For outdoor use, good configuration to guarantee good reception.
  • High sensitivity and high overload resistance
  • Stable design and suitable construction to avoid bad influence
  • High reliability and firm construction
  • Waterproof and UV resistant
  • Firm aluminum elements are UV resistant and waterproof to withstand different weather conditions
  • Easy installation
  • Excellent design, small package saves space and structure fix in minutes.
COMMENT/REVIEW:
The performance of the Skyra Outdoor Antenna GT-60N is NOT OUTSTANDING on my case. However, it doesn’t mean that the antenna design is not working. TV antenna works in different environmental conditions. In my case, i installed the antenna atop the mansanitas tree where it could most likely pick up signals from the TV transmitters. My place is blocked by a high wall of a warehouse. Hence, TV signals are hampered by the concrete wall.
Nevertheless, i could already get good signal for the lower channels: Ch. 3, Ch.7, etc and my TV set could already pick up Ch, 21, Ch, 23 and the rest of the UHF channels.The Skyra antenna design is much better than the Yagi design (e.g. Baron Antenna) which is design for only one frequency (Ch. 2 Manila for Baron design).
 I am planning to buy the other series of the Skyra Outdoor Antenna, especially the one with longer elements, more directors and those with reflectors for better reception.  🙂

D-I-Y: Grounding Your Audio-Video & PC System

Grounding or Earthing is a safety precaution to prevent electrical shock from electrical equipment or appliances.

(Photo courtesy: Wikipedia)

The theory is simple–electricity goes back to earth to complete a cycle. However, in many electronic gadgets grounding doesn’t necessarily mean connecting directly to ground or earth. It can be done by using a large conductor such as printed circuit board or the casing of the appliance or equipment itself can be used as a ground.

However, electrical insulation sometimes failed and an enormous amount of electricity can go to the casing and can cause electrical shock. In some cases, just like my audio-video and PC system, the ground voltage is high which is no longer within the tolerable limit of our body.

My PC and DVD player are both connected to the above LCD monitor which has a higher ground voltage. Every time i touch the casing of my PC, even if it’s off, i could sense a substantial amount of electricity flowing into my body. This is because the negative or ground connection of my PC is the same to that of my LCD monitor.

So, i was thinking of grounding the system to prevent electrical shock. But then, the challenge was to set up the grounding without rolling additional wire in my sala to outside the house. Remember, you have to connect the ground wire from the negative terminal of your appliance or its metal casing (in this case, from my PC’s casing) to earth or ground.

Since my LCD monitor is also a TV set which has an outdoor antenna at the top of a “Mansanitas” tree, i opted to connect my grounding wire from the antenna to a water pipe below. If you don’t have a grounding electrode just like in the first picture above, a water pipe on the ground is a best substitute.

My Baron-type antenna is placed on top of this “Mansanitas” tree outside my house. I connected the ground wire by attaching it to a screw in the aluminum bar of the antenna which holds the antenna rods.

The antenna wire (black coaxial cable) runs from my sala up to the TV antenna on top of the tree. The coaxial cable has a negative or ground wire connected to my audio-video & PC system and to the antenna.

The red (solid) wire with an insulator runs from the TV antenna down to a water pipe below.

The red wire is connected to the water pipe for grounding.

Be sure the exposed conductor of the wire is firmly attached to the water pipe for maximum grounding. Before attaching to the pipe, i tested the grounding connection by striking the wire to the pipe. There was an electrical spark which mean a complete circuit or connection from my audio-video & PC system to the ground.

Now, i can freely touch the casing of my PC, as well as my audio-video system without having experience electrical voltage. You can try this at home and give me feedback.