I can no longer find the message, but I'm sure that it was on one of
these two newsgroups within the past few days that I read an allegation
that the move from analog to digital for TV broadcasting was a plot to
push vast numbers of people to cable or satellite because the digital
signal is receivable only over a very small area.
I mentioned this allegation to a broadcast engineer yesterday. He told
me that in fact many people are not getting good reception of the OTA
digital signals and are moving to cable or satellite because many of the
expensive HD TVs on the market have appallingly insensitive antenna
inputs -- far inferior to the almost-free converter boxes that were
distributed over the last couple of years.
Fuck that. Bring back ntsc, tube TV's that bloom when you try to tune
them, low resolution color, and lots of overscan to make up for
I don't find it worth it paying the cable company $80/month for
digital tv to three tv sets, so in my situation, cable means analog
sometimes snowy, and OTA is high definition digital and just about
On Wed, 13 Jan 2010 10:45:34 -0500, "Percival P. Cassidy"
That certainly appears to be true of my new 40" Samsung.
I have the Magnavox converter that gets me several of the local UHF
channels crystal clear with a "loop" but the Samsung doesn't see them
at all with the same antenna in the same spot.
I hadn't heard that, but it is disturbing. I get great reception with
my converter box, in what had formerly been a fringe area. I have been
toying with buying a 52" Samsung LCD, but if it would be a step
backwards, I'll continue with my 36" CRT.
I'm also in a fringe area. I recently replaced my work shop TV, a 20+
year old 19" CRT with a converter, with a Sanyo LCD. The Sanyo works
just fine. FWIW the signal strength meter is in the same range (high
60s to low 80s, depending on the channel) as the meter of the
Just make sure the store you buy the LCD from has a return policy.
When I first connected the converter to the old CRT I got a much
better picture than I'd ever seen with analog broadcasts. I believe
that the problems associated with the analog to digital conversion has
less to do with technology than geography. I'm not sure that the
"great' pictures people are lamenting losing with the conversion were
all that "great" at all. They were just used to looking at a
substandard picture caused by weak a signal and interference, none of
which digital is forgiving of. Good riddance, as far as I'm concerned.
My big pioneer plasma seems to do a good job with digital channels in the DC
I have numerous ways of capturing the digital signals here all the devices
seem about the same to me, but great difference can be seen in what antennae
is used and it's placement
I live in a high rise apartment - 24th floor of 26 - SW facing balcony --
not idea, but I have a big HD antennae on the balcony next to the DirecTV
dish and get good reception on nearly all channel in the area even though I
can not get a direct view of probably 50-60 of the compass.
On Wed, 13 Jan 2010 10:45:34 -0500, "Percival P. Cassidy"
To the people that use OTA digital, how far do you live from the TV
I live in an area where we could never get good TV signals. I am
interesting in hearing from people that had poor TV and are using OTA
for digital. I live 45-60 miles from the stations.
I live 20 miles from the transmission towers. I live atop a 400'
hill. I had to put a large antenna on the roof to get good digital
reception. Some local stations have done some tinkering over the past
months to help on their end.
BTW, I've always heard that the integral digital tuners in TV's are
superior to converter boxes.
I live only 10 miles from most of my transmitters and found that even a highly
amplified, directional indoor antenna did not give me satisfactory reception
even though the land is almost flat between here and there. I needed to spend
hundreds of $ to have a rooftop directional antenna installed (my roof is high,
peaked, and I'm no spring chicken). Reception is excellent except when there
are storms, high winds, or low altitude airplanes in the transmission path.
When those conditions pertain, I get a little pixelation and occasionally a
dropout for a second or two.
I do have a second element on the mast pointing in a different direction to
receive one UHF PBS station that is 22 miles away. Interesting enough, the
reception quality and problems is identical to the problems I have with the
transmitters that are only 10 miles away. No preamps or line amplifiers in use,
and the signal is being split 3 ways for 3 different rooms in the house.
I've always had OTA reception and figured that after only about 6 mos, if the
rooftop antenna doesn't cut it, I can always go to cable. The cable bill in 6
mos for just basic service would exceed the cost of the antenna installation.
45-60 miles? GOOD LUCK WITH OTA!!
On 13 Jan 2010 17:37:58 GMT, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Also with the indoor antenna, if you're having trouble with VHF
stations it could be because the rabbit ears are extended too *far*.
I'd always assumed they should be fully extended, but that's not
necessarily the case.
I'm using a cheapo $10 dipole+UFH loop antenna. Here in Sacramento,
20 miles from the transmitters, I was getting all of the UHF stations
fine after the transition, but the local ABC and PBS station moved
back to VHF-high (channels 9 and 10) and I couldn't get them
consistently. I finally stumbled upon:
And after pushing the dipoles in to be ~30" tip to tip, the signal
improved significantly. We don't have any stations in VHF-lo anymore
(some markets do); if we did I suspect a compromise length would be
needed. I also hung the antenna using the UHF loop from a hook ~6 ft
high on the wall to get it away from the TV itself. Fortunately all
of the worthwhile stations here transmit from the same location
located straight perpendicular to that wall.
On 1/13/2010 12:37 PM, email@example.com wrote:
I bought the amplified indoor antenna after I was unable to get satisfactory
reception using several different configuration traditional unamplified indoor
antennas. The reception with the amplified antenna was much better than using
the unamplified antenna, but still unsat.
I'm in the DC metro area. One of my biggest reception problems is with a major
network outlet that is broadcasting in a lower VHF channel and dropped it's
effective radiated power from about 220KW analog to 12.5 KW digital!! That's
right, not a typo. When I called the station engineer to ask why they were
using such low power, they told me that they had petitioned the FCC to transmit
with greater power, but the FCC was concerned that greater power would cause
interference in the Baltimore metro area (which is more than 40 miles north of
DC). So, I can't receive a decent signal 10 miles away with an indoor antenna
and the FCC is worried about interference 40+ miles away. No wonder OTA
reception of this station is so difficult.
On 01/13/10 06:26 pm, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Depending on the direction of the flaky station in relation to the
others, an antenna with sufficient gain and directionality to get that
one might result in significantly poorer reception from the others.
Our TV stations are on channels as low as 7, are in directions ranging
from 17 degrees to 125 degrees from here, and are as far as 50 miles away.
On 1/13/2010 6:26 PM, email@example.com wrote:
Sorry that you must have missed my earlier postings in this thread. That's
exactly what I ended up doing, but even so, still do not get reception free of
occasional pixelation and short drop-outs when there are strong storms, high
winds, or airplanes in the line of sight between the transmitter and my rooftop
directional antenna. Peter
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