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Old 04-06-2011, 03:17 PM   #1
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FM reception


Not exactly an electrical question per say, but probably closest category.

I want to improve my radio's reception, it has one of those squarish loop antennas (not for AM, but for FM) and even with that I have to move it around a lot and get lot of buzzing. I'm thinking the TV, basically being a giant metal shield, is causing the interfeerence. If I cut a hole in the wall (which I have to do for my jack anyway) and slide a piece of romex all the way to the top inside the wall, and hook it up to the antenna, do you think this will help? Would basically be like a standard radio antenna that is just a very long telescopic rod. This would extend higher then the TV which I'm guessing is the culpit.

I thought of a roof top antenna, but don't really want to go that far just for radio. If I could somehow figure out where to drill from inside the attic, I could drill a hole to get to the inside of that wall and put the antenna in the attic, but with my luck the hole will end up outside the wall area.

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Old 04-06-2011, 03:32 PM   #2
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FM reception


I built one of these DIY antennas:

I have it in the attic of my garage. Since installing, the radio in the garage now gets every radio station, whereas before it only got 2-3, depending on weather.

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Old 04-06-2011, 03:52 PM   #3
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FM reception


A dipole antenna is probably the ultimate antenna if there is a specific station you want to receive.

Get 10 to 20 feet of 300 ohm (flat) cable. There's an illustration here that will show how to assemble it (scroll down to the drawing)

http://www.allquests.com/question/18...k-AR-HDTV.html

The instructions there say to solder, and that's good if you can, but you could just twist the wires together and it will work.

There's a calculator here, if you want to fine tune it to a specific frequency:
http://www.csgnetwork.com/antennaedcalc.html

About 6' is good enough for most FM purposes though.

Point it in the direction of what you want to receive, or point it away from what you want to not receive. They are pretty selective.

I attach mine to the wall behind the entertainment center with thumbtacks. If your radio has only a 75 ohm connector, then you need a 75-300 converter. (like this: http://www.provantage.com/steren-ele...0~7STEN0LY.htm)

Last edited by pyper; 04-06-2011 at 03:55 PM.
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Old 04-06-2011, 06:05 PM   #4
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FM reception


Loop style are usually used for AM not FM.
you could use your tv antenna system provided your
distribution amp does not have an fm trap.
Or even better still put up a proper outdoor antenna
FM radio is band 2 so most VHF antennas will work.
Even easier is to make a dipole antenna with some ribbon cable.
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Old 04-06-2011, 10:28 PM   #5
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FM reception


I'm debating on if I want to actually put an antenna in the attic. The TV (where the radio is) is actually rather central, so that part of the attic would be the highest so I could put it high enough. To go to the antenna I should use coax right? Since there is two wires do I just use the insulation as one and the middle as the other, or do I need a special type of coax, or use some other type of cable that is shielded?

For trying to accurately drill the hole I'm thinking if I tape a hard drive magnet on the ceiling right at the wall, I can maybe try to find it from inside the attic, then I know to drill a few inches away from it. Does this sound right, or is there a better way? Think I'll go for the dipole, seems rather easy to do.

Last edited by Red Squirrel; 04-06-2011 at 10:57 PM.
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Old 04-07-2011, 06:32 PM   #6
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FM reception


You might need to use a balun,
if the antenna doesnt already have one.
If the antenna just has two screws, with no plastic box
then it is 300 ohms, which means if you use coax which is 75 ohms
then you need a matching transformer or balun.
Then you can run tv coax to the radio.

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Originally Posted by Red Squirrel View Post
I'm debating on if I want to actually put an antenna in the attic. The TV (where the radio is) is actually rather central, so that part of the attic would be the highest so I could put it high enough. To go to the antenna I should use coax right? Since there is two wires do I just use the insulation as one and the middle as the other, or do I need a special type of coax, or use some other type of cable that is shielded?

For trying to accurately drill the hole I'm thinking if I tape a hard drive magnet on the ceiling right at the wall, I can maybe try to find it from inside the attic, then I know to drill a few inches away from it. Does this sound right, or is there a better way? Think I'll go for the dipole, seems rather easy to do.

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