In locations where the TV or FM radio signals are weak, such as the Colchester countryside, a signal booster (amplifier) will improve reception appreciably. With the appropriate booster, you can distribute the signals to a number of TV sets and audio systems without loss of quality.
In areas where reception is particularly poor, it would be worth having a high-gain outdoor aerial connected to a masthead signal amplifier. Mounted outside, the amplifier is powered by a special power-supply unit, which is plugged into an indoor wall socket.
If you ask the installer to fit a diplexer alongside the amplifier, you can gather and distribute signals from both a TV aerial and an FM radio aerial.
Plug-in signal boosters
For best-quality reception a signal booster should be placed as close to the aerial as possible but for sheer convenience it’s hard to beat a booster that you simply plug into a socket next to the television set. Having plugged the incoming aerial cable into the booster, you can then connect up as many appliances as the booster is designed to accommodate.
Other signal boosters are fitted with a 13amp plug on the end of a short length of flex. This type can be left freestanding on a shelf close to your TV set and hi-fi system or you can mount it on the wall, Some of these are fixed-gain’ boosters, and some are made with a dial or switch that allows you to increase and decrease the signal gain as required.
Some indoor TV aerials are made with integral signal boosters.
Installing a booster
It’s advisable to get a professional to put up a masthead amplifier, but if you are confident in all things electrical can you can install a booster yourself indoors. To fit a typical fixed-gain signal booster, screw the mounting box supplied with the booster to the wall or skirting board (1). Check that it’s level before tightening the screws.
Connect the coaxial cables from your television sets and audio system, and also the aerial cable (2).
Screw the booster to the mounting box (3), then plug it into a 13amp wall socket and switch on. Always remember to follow the manufacturers instructions.
If you are having issues with your TV signal or if you want to run your TV or sound into multiple rooms, why not give Colchester Castle Electrician a call and let us help you. You can contact Colchester Castle Electrician on 01206 700769.
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