Splitters and/or Combiners

Some interesting info for the Tablo community. It seems 2-way splitters/combiners are not all created equal.

Several years ago I was at a local store when I found a high quality (and expensive) splitter and thought, hmmm if I get this fancy new splitter it should work better than the very old (30 years or more) Archer splitter used to combine my 2 Televes roof antennas. Installed it, did a rescan, and to my surprise I went from 50+ channels to just a few. Went back on the roof to make sure everything looked good and did one more rescan with the same results. I reinstalled the old Archer, did a scan, and all 50+ channels were back. I returned the new splitter to the store and thought, well that was a waste of time.

Just yesterday I was thinking about how some of the channels that used to be 100% signal strength are now in the 60 to 70% range. Not sure but it seems to be related to the repack movements that occurred in recent months/years. I have several (5) 2-way splitters of different brands laying around so I went up on the roof to install them and do rescans each time. I installed a much newer looking Archer (it says splitter/combiner on it) and after the rescan I got only 2 channels. Then tried a Magnavox with the same results, only 2 channels. My other splitters were all older looking Archers, of slightly different designs, and they all worked great. I got my 50+ channels with all of them.

I’m not sure what I proved other than my very old splitters work much, much better than the newer ones. Are some of the newer ones not meant to be combiners?

Figured this could be helpful info for someone installing two antennas on the same mast aimed in two different directions like mine.

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Got to thinking after posting this. My Televes antennas have built in amplifiers with the power supply inside my house. This means the power for the amps has to go through the splitter/combiner. I’m guessing the newer splitters that performed poorly, do not allow that power to pass through.

My previous dual antenna setups did not have built in amps, so the combiner was above the separate amplifier. If said combiner did not allow power pass through, it wouldn’t matter in those setups.

Yes, you need a splitter that’s specifically designed to pass the DC power through, and you also need to make sure you’re using the right port for the power feed line (if it’s not all ports).


I think part of it… not much of a market for antennas. Combining and splitting is most widely used for satellite and cable signal. Combining satellite and maybe an antenna or other signal. Some splitters are balanced, others are not (more than just 2-way) often for cable - internet splits to several TVs.

Some are “rated” for different bandwidth, passive/active return… the days of simply providing a path for a know type of signal are somewhat past, I believe.

Years ago when I wired my house with RG6QS I used drop a amp from cabletvamp.


A little bit pricey but they work well I have a 8-way drop amp. It provides the same signal level on all 8 outputs that it has on the input.

seriously? http://cabletvamps.com/drop%20amps.htm click on any View Full Product Details and not get a 404 :roll_eyes:

Yes, I’ve gotten a similar “power splitter” (didn’t need a full dist-amp). These are most costly than fancier consumer products… they work and are durable.

Many of these look very similar in appearance, probably all made at the same facility and vendor add specific graphics and logos. Names and pretty colors don’t always matter.

OK like I said I bought this many years ago, maybe temporary problem. Or another company bit the dust. It looks like their forum is also getting a 404 error.