[linux-dvb] WinTV-NOVA-TD & low power muxes

Philip Pemberton lists at philpem.me.uk
Wed Apr 9 00:27:34 CEST 2008

Greg Thomas wrote:
> After trying the latest drivers, I had a go under Windows; exactly the
> same set of channels. I just guess the Nova-TD isn't that sensitive. I
> may just have to look at boosting my signal, somehow :(

Disclaimer: this is the problem as I understand it, and anything I say should 
be treated as an unproven theory until proved otherwise...

The Nova-TD seems to have an odd problem. Specifically, it seems to have some 
form of wideband low-gain amplifier/buffer on each aerial input (nothing like 
the high-gain narrowband LNA amplifier on the Nova-T-500). This takes into 
account the strongest muxes, not the mux you're currently tuned to (the T500 
seems to do the latter -- which is more sensible).

What this means is that if you've got one mux that's significantly weaker than 
the others -- e.g. the one that carries FilmFour vs. the PSB mux that carries 
BBC ONE -- you'll see a reasonable signal on BBC, but a poor signal (if you 
get a lock at all) on FilmFour.

What I did was put a 6dB attenuator between my aerial and the Nova-TD. This 
weakens the signal to the point that all the muxes are in the Nova's capture 
range. It locks on, and you get a near perfect signal on all the muxes.

Of course, it might just be that the input can't handle being overloaded, or 
was designed for the two shabby WiFi-style antennae that were bundles with the 
Nova-TD (which are truly useless). Those things probably wouldn't even work if 
you were within a mile of the transmitter...

My signal's coming from Emley Moor, ~16 miles distance via a mid-high gain 
wideband aerial.

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