A Third Generation Of Analog TV Transmitting Antenna Installation For ABS-CBN Tower In 2009

Originally entitled An “Improvised” TV Antenna of ABS-CBN of 2009, I had changed the title on this blog as requested from the reactions on the comments below as of May of 2012 coming from the radio communication electronics engineering class students (known as ECE or electronics communications engineer) accredited by the National Telecommunications Commission, Professional Regulations Commission, and Commission on Higher Education in the Philippines. I would like to thank and respect for them for gathering their reliable research from an old (or some new) electronic radio communication textbook in library and even classrooms and/or seminars in order to give a correction for posting my information as I am only entertained for most ordinary Netizens not relying about radio equipment. This would never happen to flag my blog to either block or delete before it’s too late!

Back in 2009, when I was along EDSA straight ahead to GMA Kamuning-Timog Avenue to a barber shop, I looked over the ongoing reinforcement of ABS-CBN TV tower. But at the top of it I saw a TV transmitting antenna having with V-dipole element, instead of using a conventional cylinder-type TV transmitting antenna. Although the cylinder type was still operational as some of the few sets are disassembled with the remaining 13 (North, 5; South-west, 5; South-east, 3), the V-type dipole that was currently testing until fully operational was assembled above the cylinder type. I thought that V-type dipole element would be more powerful TV signal than the cylinder type.

In the third quarter of 2009 ABS-CBN TV tower in Metro Manila introduced a V-type dipole element TV transmitting antenna, replacing the cylinder type TV transmitting antenna. Since the V-type element with special reflector weighs lighter and compact than the cylinder type and earlier TV transmitting antenna prototype, it can even hold at taller tower mast being built. ABS-CBN Channel 2 tower only powers 60 KW TPO (346.2 KW ERP) for that antenna, compared to the current GMA-7 analog TV signal with 100 KW (1 MW ERP) aiming to produce clearer image and give access to isolated Mega Manila areas.

The name of the two previously and a recent assembled analog TV transmitting prototype for decades (thanks for the comments posted on this blog from the ECE students in the Philippines based on their reliable research) as well as their branding was shown in the following list as well as the following graphical illustration below:

  • 1st generation: corner reflector antenna by SWR made in USA (assembled in 1960s)
  • 2nd Generation: CBR Cavity back resonator antenna by SWR made in USA (assembled in 2000)
  • 3rd generation: 606L Panel type dipole by RFS made in Australia (assembled in 2009)


In the past, ABS-CBN TV signal has encountered some receptional problems. Firstly, the video generates an annoying “spot-spark” lines rolling up and down caused by static interference from the atmosphere such as ionic discharge and the coinciding clouds and clear skies, which is only true to the use of low VHF RF band. Secondly, the TV transmitting signal may not capable to support some conventional TV antennas that are not sensitive enough (such as indoor antenna) on some ordinary TV sets, even without installing TV antenna but only wire and even on farther metropolitan areas, resulting to snowy picture. And lastly, ABS-CBN TV signal may not support a second-hand Japan-based TV sets on some ordinary homes because its RF spectrum (US-based TV channel 2 at 54 to 60 MHz) is different to the latter (Japan-based TV channels 1 to 3 at standard FM radio 90 to 108 MHz). Despite of this, ABS-CBN has scored a lowest percentage of audience share in Mega Manila following GMA-7’s dominance and popularity.

Before the planned reinforcement of their tower, ABS-CBN management has discovered such an analog TV antenna prototype, hoping they would redominate on the airwaves. But the V-type TV transmitting antenna was not the first to assemble over the reinforced ABS-CBN TV tower in 2009. It was the Associated Broadcasting Company (ABC-5) that became the first Philippine TV network to assemble the antenna prototype in 2008 right before the rebranding of station ID as “TV5” together with its partnership MPD Primedia based in Malaysia, and then Media Quest under MVP Group, owner of Smart and PLDT, in 2010.

The V-type dipole transmitting antenna may be compared from the typical long rabbit-ear indoor antenna forming a “V”. It was originally applied for UHF TV reception in the past but now applies in low-band VHF TV signal, in which its purpose is to increase signal gain only by applying corner reflector.

v dipole transmitter antenna radio signal

ABS-CBN had only use an advanced powerful analog-controlled TV RF amplifier in third upgrade of 2009, rather than using a digitally-controlled analog TV signal just as GMA-7 analog TV transmitter. The analog TV signal picture quality would only the same as that of 2nd upgrade analog TV in 2000.

Aside from assembling V-type antenna, I often thought a wish for ABS-CBN TV Tower to build a taller structure to succeed GMA Tower of Power at over 237 meters high, but it only stands about 220 meters as of 2010 until today, as shown below. (In the future, there would have a plan to build a new DTTV tower at about more than 400 to 450 meters tall not only widen signal coverage but also accommodating separately-owned DTTV channels.) And I had often wish that ABS-CBN should momentarily air a UHF version of Channel 2 in Metro Manila, but nothing had implemented as they only focus on ISDB-T DTTV transmission assigning on UHF TV channel formally launched at Metro Manila area in 2012.

The following video clip show that ABS-CBN VHF Analog TV Channel 2 had further improved its signal reception, only if most households in Mega Manila should use genuine analog TV set with a U.S. standard analog TV channel bandwidth rather than Japan analog TV channel standard, as well as a complete outdoor TV antenna component such as 2-element long dipole and a director.

Even a built-in analog TV mobile phone, such as MyPhone handset in yellow-color body in this two video clips below, could get analog TV channel 2 in nearby or away from ABS-CBN TV Tower outdoors, only if the unit has raised its telescopic antenna. This was comparable to those areas in Metro Manila such as city or provincial buses that were still tuning to analog TV channel 7.

The third-generation assembled analog TV transmitting antenna over ABS-CBN TV Tower would likely dismantled by 2016 once the network shuts down analog TV transmission, as well as other TV networks going digital. By March of 2012, ABS-CBN TV Tower has assembled a DTTV antenna-ladden pinnacle made by Jampro (CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS WITH PDF DOWNLOADS) in order to operate ISDB-T transmission across Metro Manila and selected nearby provinces for testing, with a further commercial run by the end of 2012.

ABC-5 (TV5) has also introduced Jampro TV transmitting antenna in 2010, in which its structure is different from V-type analog TV transmitting antenna as mentioned above. (CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS) Recently used on most remote provincial areas, the prototype not only powers analog TV transmission but also a DTV-ready.


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24 Responses to “A Third Generation Of Analog TV Transmitting Antenna Installation For ABS-CBN Tower In 2009”

  1. Justin Torres Says:

    Excellent! I have been googling about ABS-CBN’s transmitter rehabilitation for months now, and this is the first sensible and comprehensive article up to date. As a geek myself without any background in ECE, I am intrigued at the bright lights atop the transmitter of channel 2 whenever I go home from work in the morning. I do not side with Kapamilya or Kapuso, but I am disappointed at ABS for not prioritizing on their signal in Metro Manila. I mean, I myself would rather watch GMA than ruin my eyes with blurry and wrongly-pigmented picture…later did I know I can opt for cable TV… Haha!

    Nice article. Keep it up!

    • Lee Says:

      Hi just wondering what type of signal GMA is using then?

      • cloudualdo Says:

        Improvised antenna?
        1st generation: corner reflector antenna by SWR made in USA
        2nd Generation: CBR Cavity back resonator antenna by SWR made in USA
        3rd generation: 606L Panel type dipole by RFS made in Australia

        So how do you say improvised? all of these antenna are on the shelve on the manufacturer’s brochure. Not a customized one. Improvised pala. wehh!

      • cloudualdo Says:

        I forgot to mention that the first antenna by ABS CBN is a superturnstile (Batwing) antenna made by SWR (made in USA.)

        This is also a dipole antenna

  2. rona Says:

    bakit po dito sa visayas particularly sa island ng mga barangay ng ZUMARRAGA WESTERN SAMAR malabo mahinang mahina ang signal ng chanel2? sana po maaksyunan po ninyo……….. concern po ako mabuti nlang nka cable kmi ung dream……….pls……sna makarating ito sa management

  3. rona Says:

    sana malagyan dito ng malakas na transmitter or satellite

  4. Clarence Alvarado Says:

    As of this writing, the ABS-CBN Tower Reinforcement Project is under completion. I dropped by the tower after I watched Showtime Live at the ABS-CBN Studios and I saw the V-type antennas already connected through the extension of their high-rise TV transmitter, the contrary of what you’ve shown here (there were few cylindrical-type antennas still connected).

    I think, ABS-CBN is now ready to go digital. From this project, we can wait for any further completion on the test broadcasts done by the network in various areas here in Luzon and after that, we will now experience High Definition in our homes. But certainly, I am threatened for ABS-CBN to be lead by the new rival TV5, which is now owned by the business tycoon PLDT-Smart CEO Manny V. Pangilinan, in shifting to digital television. As we remember the Smart Communications’ project MyTV, TV5 may release digital television through DVB-T (Digital Video Broadcast – Handheld) for mobile phones with digital TV application.

    By the way, I am a 3rd year ECE student from PUP, and too much interested on Broadcasting Communications like this. Hope that you should post more blogs about like this. :))

    • cloudualdo Says:

      Wag maniwala sa sabi sabi. Magbasa kayo para malaman nyo kung tama sinasabi ng mga propeta. Hahaha

  5. parkirblog Says:

    I agree with this: The V-type antenna prototype, in my thought, may act as a telescopic pole in each part of its unit. 😀

    • cloudualdo Says:

      Kung mga ECE kayo, please lang magbasa kayo ng book about antenna and you will find there that those antennas mentioned (V-type cylinder etc) are all basically dipole antennas.
      Wag kayo maniwala sa sabi sabi lang. Patunayan nyo na ang pinoy hindi madaling lokohin. Hmmp!

  6. REMANO Says:

    thanks..sa info.

  7. PH Test : Says:

    Cable TV is great specially if you got those digital cable boxes that is coupled with TIVO ~

  8. DTV Pilipinas Says:

    Okay, so we do have questionable facts with the article.

    First, TV5 do not have a 10 Megawatt Effective Radiated Power or ERP, and no network situated on the lowband VHF is allowed to exceed the NTC-KBP technical parameter of 350 kW ERP in Metro Manila.

    Second, ABS-CBN exactly has the 720-foot tower measurement as of this writing, not 750 as written by yours. GMA’s tower is near 800 now, since they still upgrade their Tower of Power due to inclusion of DTT antennas in the future.

    Third, ABS-CBN cannot acquire a UHF channel, since the bandwidth for Metro Manila is now full. AMCARA, which is Studio 23’s owner, is not fully owned by ABS-CBN. Yes they can apply for a UHF relay/translator but still, there’s no more room for new UHF analog TV channel. We’re going digital now, dude.

    • cloudualdo Says:

      I agree with you DTV Pilipinas. May propeta kasi dito, buti sana kung ungas lang, ang masama bulaan sya.

      ECE kaya yan?

  9. cloudualdo Says:

    Improvised antenna?
    1st generation: corner reflector antenna by SWR made in USA
    2nd Generation: CBR Cavity back resonator antenna by SWR made in USA
    3rd generation: 606L Panel type dipole by RFS made in Australia

    So how do you say improvised? all of these antenna are on the shelve on the manufacturer’s brochure. Not a customized one. Improvised pala. wehh!

  10. cloudualdo Says:

    Hi dude! Ngayon lang ako nakarinig ng transmitting antenna na pang digital at analog. Di ba parehas lang ng antenna ang gagamitin mo kazi parehas na rf energy with the same wavelenght on a particular frequency. Mag aral ka nga brod. Kahiya mga pinagsasabi mo. Even on picture quality measurement and interference. Basahin mo kaya ung book of video systems by Grob. Baka sakali maintindihan mo. Kawawa mga pinoy na maloloko mo.

  11. cloudualdo Says:

    ALBCOR: (Currently, ABS-CBN Channel 2 only powers 60 KW due to the required signal coverage boundary issue, such as the exclusion of northern part of Bulacan giving a way to Channel 34, Pampanga giving a way to Channel 46, and few portions of Rizal and Laguna giving a way to Channels 40 and 46, respectively.)

    I think boundary is not an issue. VHF low band will not do anything harm on UHF band especially if transmitters are equipped with RF filtering which is a must for compliance. This has a lot of guard frequency to interfere on such UHF channels. The real issue is that the antenna is not capable of receiving a lot of power which will cause high VSWR at 120KW. Second, ABS CBN doesnt have to push on that power since comparison of field measurement between lowband and high band has a 3dB difference on a FCC 50/50 signal measurement which means lowband have to be half the power compared to highband and still gives off the same quality of signal to the receiving end.

    May I warn all ECE students to stop believing on this article because all of the writings here are questionable. You may want to read books about how antenna and frequency effect each other. You will find answers on the books the questions you might have in the future.

  12. cloud99 Says:

    Jampro antenna which have been commissioned by RFS Engineer.
    Can’t believe this!

  13. dadot Says:

    my location here at jaro, leyte and yung reception ng abs-cbn talagang malabo. wala akong makita. anung antenna ang pwede kong gamitin?

    • cloud99 Says:

      What channel assignment does does ABS CBN operate in Jaro Leyte?

      • albcorph Says:

        Try scanning your (genuine U.S. standard TV channel band) analog TV set only if you install high gain TV antenna like Yagi or Baron Extended Range.

    • albcorph Says:

      Use high gain TV antenna like Yagi antenna or Baron Extended Range antenna with a signal gain of +10 dB or more, as well as using RG-6 coaxial cable and matching transformer (Balun).

  14. Sonny Boy Azaña Madayag Says:

    Why is it that you don’t include the transmitter of Net-25 in your article. It’s the tallest and the first trilon TV tower in the Philippines.

  15. http://Ikli.tk/8I Says:

    This site really has all the info I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

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