Originally Posted by Nimble1
Well, when all stations go to digital next year it will be a moot point!
An antenna is an antenna - absolutely no difference between a "digital-capable" antenna and one for analog, except for the dishonesty on the part of the manufacturer's marketing
The only real difference (as far as an antenna is concerned) between most of today's analog TV broadcasts is that the majority of today's digital broadcasts are in the UHF band, not VHF
. So, depending on where your cruising grounds are, you could get better reception
with a smaller, dedicated UHF antenna.
If you're less than 15 miles or so from the transmitters, a cheap
$3 UHF loop antenna will work just about as well as a Shakespeare amplified TV antenna - because the Shakespeare is a compromise loop which depends on an amplifier for UHF performance (the size of the loop is tuned for VHF's longer wavelength).
A note on Vasco's antenna - make sure you use a 300Ω-75Ω balun
, since the natural impedence of a loop antenna is 300Ω...
Try this variation on Vasco's design: take 25" of stainless seizing wire, and make 90º bends 1.5" from each end. Bend the remaining 22" into a 7" diameter loop, and bend the ends of each 90º into a tight loop.
Since you might have to run to RadioShack to buy the balun (or "matching transformer" as RS calls it), you might as well save the time and pick up this bowtie antenna
- has better gain of the loop. Some stores may have the loop antenna...
The attached PDF shows enough detail for the average cruiser to fab it with...