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Old 04-20-2013, 06:51 AM   #1
Diceman719
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TV Antenna

I can't seem to find a pic of mine online.
The crank is Winegard, but is the antenna?

Would it be of any benefit to replace it with something newer?

Thanks,
Ron
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Old 04-20-2013, 07:00 AM   #2
Festus2
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The photo that you submitted looks like a Winegard antenna. If your TV reception on digital channels is not satisfactory, you might consider adding a Winegard Wingman to your existing antenna. This attachment is quite cheap - about $30 - and is very easy to install. I installed the Wingman on our Winegard and noticed a fairly significant improvement in the number of HDTV channels it received.

If you want to replace it, check out the Jack Digital HDTV Antenna System. It will cost about $150.

Both of these are available at CW or most likely at other RV supply retailers.

Do a Google search to find out more information about them.
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Old 04-20-2013, 07:48 AM   #3
mhs4771
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I vote for the Wingman. Put a Jack on our Montana and didn't make any difference. Should have saved our money. Some claim greatly improved reception with the Jack, but most likely they had a bad connection somewhere and when changing fixed the bad connection. My opinion and that of several Service folks I spoken too.
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Old 04-20-2013, 08:29 AM   #4
webslave
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I'm one of those that will swear by the Jack Off-Air replacement head for the Sesar unit, with or without the Wingman addition.

I, first, checked all the connections (they are notoriously poor from the manufacturer) and despite finding one bad connector, the improvement wasn't that great. I then added the Wingman. Better, but, it still wouldn't pull in the stations that several of the antenna aiming websites said I should be getting. I could get the stations by rotating the antenna, but, I would pick up one and drop one. It turns out that the Sensar with Wingman, while a good setup, is very directional. If all the stations are coming from the same area, then it works very well, but, if the stations are spread in much of an arc around your location, then reception falls off. With analog signals, that wasn't so much of a problem; the picture might be poor, but, still watchable. With the new digital signals, there is a much sharper cut-off. You can't watch a "poor" signal; when it gets too poor, you just have a blue screen or a "No signal" message.

I then tried the Jack Off-the-Air antenna head. A direct, two pin, replacement for the Sensar head. Not any difference on the signal reception of those "head-on" stations, but, the Jack has a wider signal arc acceptance range. Those off to the side signals that the Sensar Wingman couldn't feed to the television were suddenly available. Is the Jack a better antenna? Not really, but, it "appears" to be because of the wider angle of acceptance of signals. More television stations viewable, without having to re-aim the antenna.

Bottom line? If you go to the same campground all the time and all the signals come from the same place (a certain city) then you won't notice a difference. If you travel far and wide and you stay at a campground where some of the stations are from city "A" while others are from city "B", then you may get more stations without having to re-aim the antenna using the Jack Off Air replacement antenna head. Takes all of about 5 minutes to swap out heads and it was the first thing I did when I got my new 5er; off with the Sensar, on with the Jack.

I don't know where the one poster bought his for $150, but, you can find the replacement head at most RV shops for around $50...:

http://tweetys.com/jack-for-free-off...t-antenna.aspx
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Old 04-20-2013, 09:29 AM   #5
Festus2
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Don -
The $150 price for the Jack was for the whole system - including meter, base, etc. I did indicate in the post that this was the cost for the Jack System and the price was taken from the CW catalogue.

You are right in that you can buy just a replacement head for around $45-$50.
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Old 04-20-2013, 01:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by webslave View Post
I'm one of those that will swear by the Jack Off-Air replacement head for the Sesar unit, with or without the Wingman addition.

I, first, checked all the connections (they are notoriously poor from the manufacturer) and despite finding one bad connector, the improvement wasn't that great. I then added the Wingman. Better, but, it still wouldn't pull in the stations that several of the antenna aiming websites said I should be getting. I could get the stations by rotating the antenna, but, I would pick up one and drop one. It turns out that the Sensar with Wingman, while a good setup, is very directional. If all the stations are coming from the same area, then it works very well, but, if the stations are spread in much of an arc around your location, then reception falls off. With analog signals, that wasn't so much of a problem; the picture might be poor, but, still watchable. With the new digital signals, there is a much sharper cut-off. You can't watch a "poor" signal; when it gets too poor, you just have a blue screen or a "No signal" message.

I then tried the Jack Off-the-Air antenna head. A direct, two pin, replacement for the Sensar head. Not any difference on the signal reception of those "head-on" stations, but, the Jack has a wider signal arc acceptance range. Those off to the side signals that the Sensar Wingman couldn't feed to the television were suddenly available. Is the Jack a better antenna? Not really, but, it "appears" to be because of the wider angle of acceptance of signals. More television stations viewable, without having to re-aim the antenna.

Bottom line? If you go to the same campground all the time and all the signals come from the same place (a certain city) then you won't notice a difference. If you travel far and wide and you stay at a campground where some of the stations are from city "A" while others are from city "B", then you may get more stations without having to re-aim the antenna using the Jack Off Air replacement antenna head. Takes all of about 5 minutes to swap out heads and it was the first thing I did when I got my new 5er; off with the Sensar, on with the Jack.

I don't know where the one poster bought his for $150, but, you can find the replacement head at most RV shops for around $50...:

http://tweetys.com/jack-for-free-off...t-antenna.aspx
I agree completely with the jack having a wider acceptance path, I really noticed the difference. I also think the Jack has slightly more gain. Now, physics says for a wider acceptance path, all else being equal, overal gain will go down for the passive part of the antenna and both jack and wiengard are similar designs. So, I think the Jacks built in amp has slightly more gain than a wiengard built in amp in the head.

If you want the max solution, add the wiengard sensar pro amp, it works just great with either a wingman or Jack and has adjustable gain, a signal strength meter, and up to 10db more gain than the wingman amp that mounts in the trailer, and is a drop in replacement.

the combo of the Jack and sensar pro amp really makes it so I seldom have to reaim for channels that are somewhat off axis.
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Old 04-21-2013, 06:20 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Festus2 View Post
Don -
The $150 price for the Jack was for the whole system - including meter, base, etc. I did indicate in the post that this was the cost for the Jack System and the price was taken from the CW catalogue.

You are right in that you can buy just a replacement head for around $45-$50.
Sorry, I didn't catch that. I never really looked at their "system" as it has the "stubby" mount for the antenna. I've never encountered a short, stubby installation that was better or even equal to the original collapsible mast units. Signal strength is related to height and a clear view. Those short units are not only closer to the ground, but, usually mounted in an area of "roof top clutter" (vent fans, A/C compressors, etc.) that create interference, both physical and electronic, in the signal reception. I replaced a friend's "stubby" installation with a collapsible mast and the Jack head and the difference in reception was remarkable with the gain in altitude (actually only about a foot), and, most importantly, getting out of the "shade" of his A/C unit. I was ordering some things yesterday from AdventureRV.net and they have the replacement head for ~$30.00; IMHO a very worthwhile investment (I wish I had gotten mine for that...).
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Old 04-21-2013, 06:57 AM   #8
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Antenna? TV? Oh yeah, I think I turned ours on during the PDI to see if it works. We're camping and usually too far away from civilization for tv.
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