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Old 08-14-2013, 02:21 PM   #11
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UPDATE: I received my Jack antenna. Before installing it, I conducted a reception test with the old Winegard antenna. With the camper parked in my driveway, I made note of what stations I received with the antenna pointed in each of the 8 principle compass directions. To my chagrin, I picked up every one I was expecting to plus a couple of surprises.

I then installed the Jack antenna on the original crank-up mast. At first I did not think it was working since I could not see that the power LED on the antenna was on. I waited until dark, and only then was I able to see that it was indeed illuminated. I tried the reception test using the Winegard SensarPro still installed in the camper. I picked up every channel I did with the Winegard 'bat-wing' antenna, but no others. I think that may be because of two reasons. One: my area is in sort of a 'bowl' surrounded by higher terrain and secondly: the distance to any other stations. TV stations in the U.P. are far and few between.

So a more definitive test will have to wait until our next camping trip.
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:13 PM   #12
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After doing as much of an unbiased comparison as I could, I have decided to return the Jack antenna and keep the Winegard antenna.

The Winegard antenna I have is the Sensar III that came standard on our 2013 Eagle TT. I added the Winegard Wingman UHF Booster to it, and in effect, FWIU, now making the Sensar III equivalent to a Sensar IV. After that, I ditched the standard antenna booster in favor of the Winegard SensarPro signal strength meter and booster.

My initial comparisons in the driveway were rather inconclusive. But differences in existing weather conditions between the day I made my first comparisons and today I think made diferences between the two antennas more noticeable. After my first comparisons, I left the Jack on the antenna mast for our camping weekend. I used it with the Winegard SensarPro booster/meter since it offered more functions than the simple booster included with the Jack. But once I got out camping, the Jack antenna and SensarPro combo failed to provide a watchable signal on the two network channels closest to the campground. The signal continuously faded in & out. I swapped the antennas out and put the Winegard back up and was able to pull in the two channels with no problems. I left it there for the rest of our camping trip.

Once we got home I decided to run another comparison. I put the Jack back on the Winegard antenna mast with new coax running in the door to the Jack's signal booster and direct to the TV. I then pointed the Jack antenna in several directions and scanned for TV stations. Three stations were fading in & out and not watchable.

Next I removed the Jack's booster and connected the Winegard SensarPro booster/signal strength meter. Again I pointed the Jack in several directions, but this time I used the SensarPro to precisely aim the Jack antenna to get the strongest signal for all the detectable channels. Again the same three stations were fading in & out but not quite as bad as with the Jack's booster. I then made notes of the indicated signal strength and the direction of each channel.

Lastly, I put the Winegard Sensar III and Winegard Wingman back on the antenna mast. I pointed the Sensar III/ Wingman at each of the stations detected by the SensarPro. The Sensar III/ Wingman combination picked up every channel the Jack did, but unlike the Jack, all the stations were clear, steady and not fading in & out. The last thing I did was get signal strength readings off the SensarPro. Every one of the stations had a significantly higher strength reading than the Jack antenna did using the same indicator.

So I believe I have shown convincingly and as impartially as I could, that the Winegard Sensar III and Wingman works better than the Jack. So I have concluded the Jack can
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Old 08-28-2013, 05:33 AM   #13
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Thanks Tail_gunner....nice side-by-side comparison
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Old 09-03-2013, 10:57 PM   #14
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After having several days to ponder the results I got from my antenna comparison, I think I may have a theory as to why my results were contrary to what others experienced when switching to the Jack antenna.

I think that most folks that try the Jack antenna, are starting out with the Winegard Sensar III antenna.
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While I had the Sensar III antenna, I had added the Wingman:
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Which gave me this configuration which from what I can tell is the same as the Sensar IV:
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Since the FCC mandated the change to digital tv in the USA a few years ago, all but very low power tv stations are now broadcast in only the UHF frequency spectrum.

According to Winegard, the Wingman accessory increases UHF reception significantly:
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I suspect many folks are comparing Jack antenna to the Winegard Sensar III antenna when they realize better reception with the Jack.

But when you add the Wingman accessory to the Sensar III or a have Sensar IV which has the already Wingman included, I suspect the Jack may fall short in digital reception.

Again, just my theory as to why I got different results than many other folks who switched to the Jack antenna.
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Old 09-07-2013, 12:14 PM   #15
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One thing I'd like to add, several years ago, I was a parts guy at a RV dealer. One day one of our parts distributors came by with the Winegard antenna rep in tow. Something he told me that stuck was the enhancements they made to their 'batwing' antenna. With the switch to digital TV a few years back, Winegard tweeked the 'batwing' to improve the reception. I asked the guy how to tell the new 'tweeked' antennas from from the old ones. Apparently the old antennas had unpainted, silver wings. But the new antennas have painted wings. So if you have an antenna with silver wings, it's an old one. If it has painted wings, it is a newer one with better digital signal reception.
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