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Old 12-12-2011, 02:49   #1
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Marine TV Applications

Can anyone advise on what experience (preferably positive) they've had with TV installations on boats?
I'm looking at installing or actually replacing the current (cable) system that has been fitted on a Meridian 411 I recently brought into Australia.
Cheers Ed
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Old 12-12-2011, 06:08   #2
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Re: Marine T.V. Applications

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Ed.

Will you be receiving broadcast, satellite, or cable?
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Old 12-12-2011, 06:59   #3
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Re: Marine T.V. Applications

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Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Ed.

Will you be receiving broadcast, satellite, or cable?
Or transmitting?
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Old 12-12-2011, 07:01   #4
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Re: Marine T.V. Applications

I installed a 17 " flat screen where there was once a tube unit. Got a huge amount of storage behind it now. We use a "Hinkley hoop" antenna which is a simple round omni directional unit that recieves broadcast TV here in the US and a few stations in the Abacos. In the states I get about 10+ stations in most urban areas I run it off a small inverter about 1/2 the size of a pack of smokes from Radio Shack. or shorepower if at the dock. . I have an A-B coaxial switch for Antenna or cable if at the dock. Broadcast (Over the air) here has some fun channels with all the old 60's programs and most PBS channels. Mostly we watch movies that we trade amongst our fellow cruisers. It is a nice option on rainy days.

Get a few folks over for Popcorn and movie night, and Retro TV is a hoot!
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Old 12-12-2011, 07:20   #5
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Re: Marine T.V. Applications

I have a small 12v flat screen and just installed a kvh satellite antenna with a 12v receiver works very well even while under way I have about $2500 in everything and installed myself
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Old 12-12-2011, 08:08   #6
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Re: Marine T.V. Applications

If you do some research and really shop you will find that some modern flat screens, especially power saver models, run on 12V even though they are not designed or sold as 12V systems. As such they cost dramatically less than a 12V system built for the marine or RV market and work just as good or better. Just check the back panel, or look for a converter box in the cord. Many run on 19V, some 12V, even some 9V in small models. Just cut off the cord before the converter box and wire it in to your system, works great. I have a 21" LED in the forepeak for the kids and a 32" LED 1080P 120hz in the aft cabin. If you really want to go expensive then you can look at sattellite systems for underway, then you have cable tv on the hook instead of just movies.
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Old 12-12-2011, 08:45   #7
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Re: Marine T.V. Applications

You might want to have it computer ready also. If you are using an anttena you might want to google digital antenna made from coat hangers. cost about $5-7 to make works really great. Use ours at home when cable goes out actually get a better pic just not as many chanels.
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Old 12-12-2011, 13:47   #8
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Re: Marine TV Applications

Thanks very much for the advice. I'm looking at the issues associated with reception of regular free to air tv, in particular with regard to reception and guidance of what type (and even number of antenna) to use.
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Old 12-12-2011, 14:17   #9
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We bought a truckers 12v HDTV. We have a harkin halo on top of the mast. Here on the ICW we get 35 stations, no cable needed. The best part are the 24/7 weather channels.
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Old 12-12-2011, 14:42   #10
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Re: Marine TV Applications

When I have the need for TV the mast top VHF aerial is switched with a coax switch to provide the signal. The stand by VHF on the back rail is then used for radio.

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Old 12-12-2011, 14:56   #11
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Re: Marine TV Applications

I went with the Shakespeare omnidirectional powered antenna. I was getting strange problems until I learned to turn the power down when line of sight to or near the transmitter!

I used a basic 12V TV because it showed a boat on the packet and I figured I could bring it back if it didn't work.

As it turned out the TV worked fine. The supplied cigarette lighter plug melted so I hardwired it. The "computer" type plug going into the TV comes loose easily.

The main problem I have is the quality of the TV set. It has a poor viewing angle, and the aspect ratio always seems wrong. I should have gone with the best quality set available.

Power consumption on the 22" TV does not seem to worry the batteries at all. The car radio I put in uses amps like they are going out of style. That I may replace.
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Old 12-12-2011, 15:41   #12
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Re: Marine TV Applications

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Originally Posted by Boracay View Post
I went with the Shakespeare omnidirectional powered antenna. I was getting strange problems until I learned to turn the power down when line of sight to or near the transmitter!

I used a basic 12V TV because it showed a boat on the packet and I figured I could bring it back if it didn't work.

As it turned out the TV worked fine. The supplied cigarette lighter plug melted so I hardwired it. The "computer" type plug going into the TV comes loose easily.

The main problem I have is the quality of the TV set. It has a poor viewing angle, and the aspect ratio always seems wrong. I should have gone with the best quality set available.

Power consumption on the 22" TV does not seem to worry the batteries at all. The car radio I put in uses amps like they are going out of style. That I may replace.
This is why it can be good to go with a regular household model that runs on 12V instead of a 12V model made expressly for the marine or RV industries. The latter seem to have terrible quality despite costing twice as much IME. But the former can be found in the very latest high quality models with some serious shopping and research. No TV store person anywhere was able to help me, they were all confused and useless. You have to start walking the aisles and looking at the back panels of TVs. Look for powersaver models with a converter box on the cord. My 32" LED 1080P 120hz pulls less than an amp, LED TV's are the way to go for low power consumption. There are some older threads on this topic here as well.
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Old 12-12-2011, 15:45   #13
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Re: Marine TV Applications

We have a NAXA 12v TV with a built in DVD player (either ebay or Amazon) and a home made antenna sort of like this but it folds in half for more compact storage.

CatalinaOwners.com=

We hang the antenna in the rigging when we are either anchored or in a marina.

We have used it in the ICW between New Bern and Miami where we can get the local TV stations and in the Bahamas when near ZNS or when the atmospherics bring us Florida TV. The DVD player gets a workout.

No complaints.

Bill Murdoch
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Old 12-12-2011, 16:27   #14
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Re: Marine TV Applications

x2 on home made antennas. We bought a fancy amplified omni directional unit for the last boat and it lasted a total of 6 months before it was toast. It was toast not because it was faulty, but because it had a serious design flaw in that it allowed water to pool inside the connector which both corroded the connector itself and allowed water to wick up the wires into the amplifier unit. I was thumbing through an old cruising book a while ago and saw instructions on making an antenna out of copper water pipe. For the next TV I intend to make one of these and swing it from a halyard as needed.

I also "marinised' the last TV, and will do the same to the next TV, by pulling out the circuit board and giving it a good coating of polyurethane motor winding insulation spray.
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Old 12-12-2011, 16:57   #15
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Re: Marine TV Applications

I have a 32 in. Sony Bravia LCD in the main cabin and a 20 in LCD in the master cabin. They run off the inverter. My recieving antenna is a KVH C3 satellite antenna hooked to a bell reciever ( Bell Expressvu). System runs anywhere on the west coast of North America.
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