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Antenna installer qualifications

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At the risk of rehashing old arguments and opinions regarding qualifications and suitability to the task at hand, it seems to me that the only "specialized" training information is provided by the manufacturers

This is changing several Tafe colleges one in NSW and Chisolm here in Victoria that I'm aware of are offering training packages in this area now.

1. Installation techniques are learned not inherited via the gene pool.

2. TV has been around for 70 years and is an ongoing technology with many changes, the antenna industry as a whole has a vested interest in maintaining the best possible outcomes regarding installations to remain credible.

3. Share knowledge and help the new guys we all have to start somewhere and refer point 2

4. There is plenty of work for everyone.

I'm not going to enter into discussions about the franchise model as there's obviously good and bad everywhere but a large number of digital fixup jobs I do, have been visited by a franchisee antenna installers previously who clearly don't have the knowledge or experience to be installing or fault finding digital tv reception equipment.. This is evidenced by the some of the BER readings I see on newly installed antennas.

As for your points 1 and 2 I don't think it even occurs to some of the knuckle draggers out there that the best possible outcome in an installation is a happy customer.. This is evidenced by the fact that on a regular basis (probably weekly) I attend a customer site because the previous installer (not just franchise operators but plenty of others) won't come back to an install they have charged good $$ for.

As for your point 3, I and many longtime posters on this forum are more than happy to assist anyone who has questions of a technical nature when it comes to installing antennas or reception problems but I do take issue with people who call themselves professionals asking basic questions that they should be well versed in or when you give someone advice and they ignore it and ask the same thing again and again. I've taught forum members how read and interpret a digtial FSM, and have assisted several forum members who are installers how have asked for help around Melbourne.

I don't wish to speak for them but I'm sure that MTV, Mbozo, CharlesC, BelloTV, and others who all would have similar experiences and are all valuable contributors to this forum and can't recall any of them belittling anyone seeking help.

Jason aka beeblebrox

Feel free to give me a call during BH if I can be of any help to you 03-9457-6655

Edited by beeblebrox

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Jason, thanks for your well thought out reply and I take on board what you say, I love the comment regarding knuckle draggers, well said!. :lol:

As for your invite to call, I have programmed you into my phone and would like to ring you some time if ok by you.

Just as an aside to all, does anyone have or had a chance to try out the TERRAMANN 1720 DVB-T meter? what are your thoughts? I have one here on trial and hate the bloody thing on short acquaintance, although it has full MER/ BER post and pre capabilities it's a pig to use. Not sure whether to opt for the Hills (rebadged ROVER T2 Scout) or T40 (don't have a Laceys in SA so a bit reluctant to buy interstate with regards to service and warranty)

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Gollumdood,

I plan to be in SA grand final week. I'll have my T-40 with me and would be glad to share my experiences with you if I have the time and you're not in some woebegone part of the state.

My work number is 0418 142 312, best to text me as I don't answer the phone while I am with a customer, driving or stuck in a tight spot under/on a roof, or in the bush, and you will only divert to message bank.

The service and backup of the T40 supplier is generally good from my and some others pov on this forum.

Regards,

Marc.

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T40 (don't have a Laceys in SA so a bit reluctant to buy interstate with regards to service and warranty)

I'm in country NSW and although I have had to send my T40 back to Laceys.tv for recalabration,being interstate is not a big issue as Laceys turn-around is very fast ,less than a week.

I would recommend T40 for digital anyday.

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Gollumdood,

I'd second/third the good call on the T40, and the support from Laceys.tv. The meter has all the main measurements, as well as Channel State Information (CSI), and can be optioned up to have the Adaptive Equaliser Response (AER) card added. The AER function I believe is the same as in the Unaohm EP3000 EVO.

One thing I particularly like about the T40 is the data logging capability, and the ability to bring this across to a PC for generating reports. Also the capability to manage the T40 frequency plans etc via the PC.

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have or had a chance to try out the TERRAMANN 1720 DVB-T meter? what are your thoughts? I have one here on trial and hate the bloody thing on short acquaintance, although it has full MER/ BER post and pre capabilities it's a pig to use. Not sure whether to opt for the Hills (rebadged ROVER T2 Scout) or T40 (don't have a Laceys in SA so a bit reluctant to buy interstate with regards to service and warranty)

Haven't seen the Terramann so can't comment.

For hanging off Chimneys and general antenna work it's pretty hard to beat a T40.. Lacey's support has always been good, given I've had a couple of T40 problems over the years. Even for basic MATV work where no Sat is needed it's quite ok too.

Ikusi are also now rebranding the Rovers as well and that will keep the rover pricing keen.

I had a play with the Hills last week over a beer and it seems to have the stock standard ST2 software in it (the Ikusi DSA100 is supposed to have some specially modified software for them but I haven't seen it yet they're going to get me a demo unit when the new stock comes in next week).

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Managed to have a play with that DSA-100 yet ? They are keenly priced right now (Christmas 2008).

Many thanks in advance.

Regards,

Softekk2

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Managed to have a play with that DSA-100 yet ? They are keenly priced right now (Christmas 2008).

Many thanks in advance.

Regards,

Softekk2

I've got a DSA 500 now as my primary everyday meter.

It's a good meter that performs well. My only gripe is the spectrum can be a bit slow now and again.

The basic functionality of the 100 and 500 are the same bar the TFT screen more battery life, MPEG2 Decoder and the scart input/output.

I use it for DTV/ATV/FM/SAT/MATV installs on a daily basis and once I got it setup with the channel plans the way I like them I find it very easy to use and very accurate and reliable.

Ikusi have been good with support and software updates when needed too.

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I also have a T40 as my backup meter.

The AER feature is brilliant for displaying multipath/reflected signals and makes installing in difficult single frquency network (SFN) areas a much easier task.

I don't have AER in the T40, but I do have it in the AP-01.

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I also have a T40 as my backup meter.

The AER feature is brilliant for displaying multipath/reflected signals and makes installing in difficult single frquency network (SFN) areas a much easier task.

I don't have AER in the T40, but I do have it in the AP-01.

Hi mtv,

I am having trouble using the PM and email on this forum. I have a installation job for you to do for me. Can you email me at cliverutter@optusnet.com.au.

Thanks,

Clive Rutter

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Hi mtv,

I am having trouble using the PM and email on this forum. I have a installation job for you to do for me. Can you email me at cliverutter@optusnet.com.au.

G'day Clive,

email sent :)

BTW, as a 'new' member... you need a minimum of 5 posts before you can use the email & PM features.

Edited by mtv

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Many thanks (toung in cheek) for the quick reply. I thought about the DSA500 but abandoned the idea due to cost Vs use, however I will probably spend the extra 3k and work a little harder & longer to recover the costs. I'm getting a little more mature (spelt OLDER) these days and don't favour the extra work. Having said all that; the extra functions could be put to use in some of the locations around here (Barrington Topps). Besides the Toy/Tool factor it is much safer than another than the purchase of another MicroLight Aircraft.

Many Thanks for the advice.

A Merry Christmas to all.

Regards,

Softek2

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Many thanks (toung in cheek) for the quick reply. I thought about the DSA500 but abandoned the idea due to cost Vs use, however I will probably spend the extra 3k and work a little harder & longer to recover the costs. I'm getting a little more mature (spelt OLDER) these days and don't favour the extra work. Having said all that; the extra functions could be put to use in some of the locations around here (Barrington Topps). Besides the Toy/Tool factor it is much safer than another than the purchase of another MicroLight Aircraft.

Many Thanks for the advice.

A Merry Christmas to all.

Regards,

Softek2

A little less chance of killing yourself that way... btw keep your tounge to youself... my wife'll be getting jealous again!!

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Well, isn't it interesting? I see that the Deaprtment of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy is promoting a "antenna installer endorsement scheme". Sounds like licensing to me. There's no real information about it on their website. I've sent an e-mail asking for more information - only to be told that they promise to respond within a month! Anyone know any more?

Anyway, when I wrote the Antenna Installe training program for NSW DET I recommended that this be considered, however the industry howled down the idea. Earlier posts here show some of the debate. So how do you feel now that the Feds look like they are going to make it a requirement? Was there industry consultation?

Edited by ThrillseekerOne

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If I recall correctly, this came about with the announcement of Mildura being the first area in Australia to switch off analogue TV transmissions.

It's not licensing as such, just an 'ID' that the installer wears to indicate they have the knowledge and equipment required to install antennas and distribution systems to the Australian Standard.

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Was there industry consultation?

I wonder.

From enquiries I made at Tafe SA & Tasmanian Polytechnic last month, I wasn't able to get an answer re existing or planned courses that may be related to the following on the digitalready web site:

As part of the quality assurance scheme, a standard training package for antenna installers will also be made available through recognised training providers. The endorsement scheme will be launched in the latter half of 2009.
.

At least I may be able to get a badge to wear before then :rolleyes:

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I'm still waiting the hear back anything from the email I sent to DigitalReady. Seems like someone thought it would be a good idea without seeing what was available and in place.

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I rang the freecall number, which elicited a response that you need to send an email so you are registered to get the information when it becomes available - which will also be in about 30 days time :lol:

ThrillseekerOne,

Has a month actually lapsed since you sent your email?

Marc.

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All,

There is no current Australian Standards on antennas or domestic installations. Only AS1367-2007 for MATV systems.

Fortunately the Mildura area's analog service channels 6, 8, 29 & 32. The digital channels are 7,11, 28, 31 & 33. require the same band 3 & 4 antenna.

The reason Mildura was selected is because they added a digital only TEN network affiliate, hence 75 % of homes have DTV reception.

The next area after Mildura will test the antenna systems. It is regional SA.

Spencer Gulf North

Analog channels 1, 4, 40 & 42

Digital 34, 38, & 41.

So channel 1 is good for picking up impulse interference and channel 4 for high powered FM radio causing high error rates particularly in masthead amplifiers. So all antennas whould be replaced with a band 4+ antenna.

South East

Analog 1, 8, 29, & 41

Digital 32, 39 & 40

Channel 1 again!

Riverland

Analog 3, 5A, 30 & 34

Digital 35, 49 & 40

Channel 3 is sensitive to high power FM.

So in regional SA I hope they only sell and install band 4+ antennas and UHF only masthead amplifiers from now on. The exception to this is low powered repeaters which are in band 5. All the digital transmitters are currently operating.

AlanH

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I rang the freecall number, which elicited a response that you need to send an email so you are registered to get the information when it becomes available - which will also be in about 30 days time :lol:

ThrillseekerOne,

Has a month actually lapsed since you sent your email?

Marc.

Marc - not quite a month yet.

Everyone - I spoke today with a client of mine who is also the head of the NSW Utilities and Electrotechnology Industry Training Advisory Body (NSW UEITAB). Norm also knows nothing about this accreditation scheme. Yet if anyone should be in the loop it's the ITAB, as that is their job! As I learn more I will keep people informed.

If people are interested, ElectroSkills at Rhodes (Sydney), a not-for-profit RTO, is running the TV Antenna Install training course I wrote.

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When this was first announced I pinged both the dept and Conroys office.. as with most of these things they've announced something without acutally knowing how to do it...

now they're scrambling around to put some half a..d plan together.

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Beeblebrox,

I pointed out to the switchover taskforce well over a year ago, there was no antenna training available from registered tranining organisations or TAFEs.

AlanH

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