So Keyron finally got on my case enough and today while I was at Wally World I picked up a television.
Here’s the thing, lots of DTV sets for short money but they’re all SD sets. I picked up a 19″ color TV for $79. I’m waiting for the true HD sets to get into that range, from $100 to $200. They will get there, it’s just that DTV isn’t upon us as yet. There are still a couple of years to go before analog broadcasters must turn off their transmitters.
The television is stone deaf though when it comes to receiving signal. I guess that is what happens when you design for a CATV 0db signal right to the F connector on the back of the television. So I crafted my own antenna.
I took the low end frequency of channel 2, and then 4 other representative frequencies up to channel 64, summed them and took the mean. Then I plugged the mean into the formula for finding wavelength of signal which is λ=300/f where λ is the wavelength and f is the frequency in MHz. The mean wavelength for those channels from 2 through 64 is about 1.22m or 4 feet. So I cut off 4 feet of 24 gauge wire, stripped about 5/8″ of insulation from the end and shoved it into the center conductor slot of the F connector on the TV. Then I looped it up into the antenna slot so that it swivels.
With that in place I can get about a dozen or so channels over the air. Not too shabby. And I’m not paying a cable company $30 for the privilege
Earning my amateur radio license actually served the purpose today. I actually learned the formula many years ago, in a high school physics course. Now if I wanted to calculate phase angles for an oscillator, then the amateur radio formulae would really kick in. You know, things like Colpitts oscillators, Hartley Oscillators, Voltage Controlled Oscillators.
And an oscillator in it’s simple form is nothing but an inductor and a capacitor. Because each has different rates of discharge as well as saturation points, and one is a magnetic storage while the other is a static storage device, they oscillate a current back and forth until resistance and reactance finally kill the current.
Yes I know, a little too much information. But now you know a bit about something that is in pretty much every bit of electronic gear out there, from radios to computers.