Video Distribution Problem

nswint

Member
I have a major problem with my video distribution. All the channels look horrible with snow and lines and I don't receive channels 1 - 7. I changed the splitter outside to a better one and put an inline amplifier with gain control. The amplifier did help to view more channels. Without the amplifier almost all the channels are not visible, with severe snow. The distance from the cable box outside to the distribution panel is about 40 feet and the longest run from the distribution panel is about 50 feet. All wiring is shielded RG-6. Do I need to upgrade to a higher powered amplifier? If so, what brand.
I was looking at the Chanel Vision C-0135
http://www.smarthomeusa.com/Shop/cvc/CVC-A...RF/Item/C-0315/

Setup.
Outside Splitter with 2 outs. One for the video distribution panel and one for cable modem.

Channel Vision - 1 in 8 out RF Splitter
http://www.smarthomeusa.com/Shop/cvc/CVC-S...rs/Item/C-0208/


And A Leviton RF Amplifier. I picked it up from Home Depot. Can't Find The Model number and power.
 

Chakara

Active Member
Where is the amplifier in the circuit. Put it as close as you can to the "Outside" splitter on the "TV" leg. This way if you have weak signal you are amplifying it when it is at it's best rather than after it has degraded more on it's way to the "Inside" splitter.

Also, just to check, if you hook a TV up to directly to the TV leg of the "Outside" splitter how does it look?
 

BraveSirRobbin

Moderator
Hmmm, I'm willing to bet you have a problem with your cable terminations themselves. I would reterminate or at least recheck your F terminations. I'm thinking you have an "open" somewhere or at least the center contact is nicked or not "long" enough and it's not making a good connection.

Also, make sure you are using the RG-6 "Quad Shield" cable to eliminate local station transmission "bleed through" to your cable signal.
 

BraveSirRobbin

Moderator
Thinking about this a little more. Do you happen to have a small TV that you can cart around (even outside)? Maybe connect this TV directly to your street feed (outside/side of your house??) and troubleshoot from there!
 

TCassio

Active Member
Also, if you are not using all 8 outputs on the amplifier you should have terminating resistors in the unused outputs.

T.
 

rocco

Active Member
If the Leviton amplifier that you are using is the same one I saw at Home Depot, it only has 15db of gain. With that 2way splitter followed by the 8way splitter, you have 15db loss even before considering the runs of RG6.

I would not use that particular Channel-Vision amp because:
1) It is not really what you need, and
2) It is overpriced.
(I can expand on why I don't think that amp is right, if you like.)

My suspicion is that your cable company is delivering a weak signal. It should arrive at your house at 15db-mV. Have someone come out and measure it. Make them show you 15db-mV on the meter. If it's low, there is nothing you can do, as boosting a low signal will boost the noise as well.

You will need an amplifier if you want to use that 8way splitter, but what you need depends on:
1) If it's analog cable, how many cable channels you have.
2) Whether the cable modem goes through the amp.
3) Whether you want to add modulated video to the cable.

I've been using this amp for years. It's 20db gain for $15.
http://www.solidsignal.com/prod_display.asp?CAT=&PROD=SS1472
 

nswint

Member
I actually disconnected the line running to the distrution module and connected back my original cable jacks for a few days while I had relatives visiting for the 4th. The amp is in the panel before going to the Channel Vision Splitter. I'll check the F Connecters in the AM. I suspected that was the Channel Vision Splitter itself and not the connectors, but wanted to rule out everything.
 

BraveSirRobbin

Moderator
Let us know how it goes. If you still can't get the lower channels after bypassing your amps/distribution items you will REALLY want to check how far the F connectors center conductor is extending from the cable connector (in order for a good contact to exist).
 

The Pod

Active Member
Video distribution I have found to be very picky. The ideal setup is to have a signal between 12db and 16db at each tv. Here is a good tutorial on how to calculate gains and losses. More amplification is not always the answer, when you start getting a signal strength over 16db, you'll start seeing snow and a bunch of other problems. I had my setup running really nice and clear when the cable company came out and changed the cable running to my house (old one was stretched and signal was being degraded). After replacing the main wire all my lower channels looked like a snow storm. I actually had to add a 6db filter to the line to decrease the signal out of the amp and it brought my picture quality back to a clear image. Check out the tutorial, map out your wiring layout and do the math to see what your signals are coming out at the TV's.

The Pod
 

BraveSirRobbin

Moderator
Yes, good post "The Pod"! If you don't start out with a clean signal to your home, you can get into a bit of a hassle trying to bandaid it to look good!
 

nswint

Member
All is well now. Somehow the cable came out of the F connector outside and I didn't notice. I put on a new one and recrimped. The signal coming from the outde was rather strong. I tested going straight to the distribution panel and it was almost as the same as going to the amplifier. Channels on the longest run look fine. Thanks for the help.
 
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