Courtesy of Fred Vobbe, Your Hometown Stations Chief Engineer
One of the most common questions we get asked is; what kind of antenna should I get to watch WLIO and WOHL over the air?
Antenna physics and theory has not changed in many decades. There are a lot of antennas people sell which are not good! If they look cool, or if they state a number of stations or miles of reception, usually they are bogus. An antenna manufacturer can always sell something and claim it can receive 100 stations from 75 miles away, but that is only true if the antenna is on top of a 1,000' tower.
Things to look for:
1). The standard for reception is base on an OUTSIDE antenna, at least 30 TO 40 FEET in height.
2). The antenna should be designed for the BAND OF OPERATION.
3). The antenna has to be directional and have a passive gain of 6dB. This means NO preamp.
4). The antenna has to be pointed AT THE STATION OR TRANSMISSION SOURCE, and not "off the side" or "the back". The antenna can not be a panel or dish, or non-directional.
5). A good antenna, outdoors, does not need an amplifier, booster, kicker, etc.
6). An antenna purchased in the 60s or 70s will work for digital. There is no such thing as a digital antenna, and HD antenna, a 4K antenna etc. These are words used to make people think they need to buy their antenna.
For your reference, below is a map showing the site for all three transmitter sites that you should point your antenna at the closest transmitter. The transmitter in Lima broadcasts all four networks:ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX. The transmitters in Putnam and Auglaize Counties only broadcast ABC and CBS.
Since 2009 we've purchased antennas and tested them. Some went right to the dumpster. But some show real promise. Here are a few winners which we recommend:
If you have any questions or need help with an antenna, please contact our technical staff at firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to Engineering Dept, WLIO/WOHL Television, 1424 Rice Avenue, Lima OH 45805.