I use an RCA HDTV antenna.
Sometimes I get electronic static.
It is usually with stations just outside of the range of the station.
But it also occurs with stations which are withing range.
Would it helped if I got an external outdoor antenna, one with the folding aluminum arms ?
The first rule of antennas is that an unobstructed signal is king; this
is accommodated by putting the antenna outside, up high, with the goal
of having "line of sight" to the transmitter. As to the choice of
antenna, that is up to you, but you should get (or make) one specific to
the signals you are trying to receive.
For HDTV, this means a UHF antenna; here is one you can build with
things you probably already have laying around:
You MUST try each in your actual location any of those active antennas,
most are useless, even depends on the model. I found TERK TV5 indoor
version received quite a few stations when all went digital. Radio Shack
was worse than a pair of rabbit ears! Also, bad weather usually reduced
most of ours to the point of pure frustration. At least with analog you
could 'kind of see' between bad spots, but with digital...
You didn't say where you were, how far to stations, nor if all same
location or spread around the clock so to speak. Makes a big difference.
There are websites that will tell you exactly where, and how far, each
station is and sometimes even signal strength you should expect.
Historically nothing beats a giant, fringe antenna mounted on a two story
roof top about another 15 feet up with NOTHING between you and
transmitters. I had to use 2 antennas, VHF = huge and UHF strange shape.
But I used to receive 66 channels free.
Well, except for cable or dish types.
THere is a story going 'round that all current stations are UHF.
Not so. Most are but not all. He should look at antennaweb.org or the
other one whose name I'veforgotten to see what actual channels are used
for the stations he might get.
One of them has an antenna recommendor. He doesn't have to buy the one
there, but he should at least look at what it looks like.
On Friday, May 30, 2014 6:44:31 PM UTC-4, Andy wrote:
if OP is in US they shouldnt be getting static since digital tv doesnt get static, it pixxels. the picture breaks down into little boxes or disappears completely.
static was a analog tv problem, digital has the pixeling issue.
I have a large UHF corner reflector tv on the house at its peak.
since most stations are network tv they all carry the same programing.
so even if you can get a 100 channels, when all is said and done theres probably just 8 sepearte groups of content
The OP is in Dickinson or League City Texas.
This is a TVFool report on what stations he can receive:
Seems to be about 34 possible channels he can receive, with 33 of them
being 27 to 29 miles away, and 1 channel being 9 miles.
Almost all possible channels are 28 miles away - actually about 2 dozen
channels are clustered at around 285 degrees (almost due west) from him,
in a very tight spread around 28 miles away. There are about 5 other
channels located at 320 compass degrees (exactly north-west) with all of
those also in a tight spread about 28 miles away.
There are actually many analog channels on the air in his area - about
15 (if by virtue their call signs end with "-LD" or "-LP" or "-CD" and
they have no virtual channel identifier). The number of analog channels
seems to outnumber the digital channels.
Most likely that is channel 5 (KJIB) which is 9 miles exactly due north.
It is affiliated with the CW television network.
The CW Television Network (commonly shortened to The CW) is an American
broadcast television network that launched on September 18, 2006. It is
a limited liability joint venture between CBS Corporation, the former
owners of the United Paramount Network (UPN), and Time Warner subsidiary
Warner Bros. Entertainment, former majority owner of The WB Television
Network. The "CW" name is derived from the first letters of the names of
these corporations (CBS and Warner Bros.).
A home-made single-bay Gray Hoverman antenna located inside the house
(hanging on a wall or from the ceiling or located in an attic) would
suffice for the OP.
The tin-foil-covered rear reflector is not needed - a wire mesh with
1/2" or 1" openings is all you need.
There are a handful of stations in the VHF band that might be a
challenge to pick up with a UHF antenna:
KUHT (channel 8 - PBS)
KTRK (channel 13 - ABC)
KDHU (channel 7)
KAHO (channel 4)
KJIB (channel 5)
IIRC the only analog stations are either low-power, -LP or -LD, but LD
stands for something else.
Even though they're low power, TVFOOL is saying he can get them, some
just with rabbit ears. For years, I've wondered about how this could be
If I were the OP, I'd wkip or google all the small stations to see if
there is any of them he really wants, and then plan to get them if
possible. I would check with neighbors to see what is possible. I
would actually drive down the road looking for houses with outside
antennas and knock on the door, introduce myself, and ask about what
stations he gets, what stations are worth having, what problems he had
getting them. Believe, they won't mind. They paid a couple hundred
dollars to have that antenna put up and they'll get as much satisaction
from telling the OP about it as they do from watching TV for a week.
Its low (300 watt) power and VHF band placement make the station
difficult to receive in most parts of the Houston area. The station has
filed to increase its power to 3 kW. But even 3kw is not much iirc.
Bob made a good point about static. On what channel do you get static?
And are you old enough ;) to know what static really is? It's the noise
in an AM radio when there is lightning outside (or inside) and can be
caused by other things too. With an analog television, it shows up as
little white spots that come and go at many seemingly random spots on
As to antennas, I'd look at www.solidsignal.com . I think you can
call them too and they have people answering questions who really know
what they're talking about. I don't remember you insisting on a very
cheap antenna. I bought one with those arms you mention, OP, and the
arms just swing out, plus there was a second part to the antenna that
screwed in with only one screw iirc, and iirc one signal wire. I put
mine in the attic (didn't even mount this one on a pole, screwed to a
rafter, like I did my amplified antenna from 30 years ago. I just rested
it on two big cardboard boxes), which was much easier than the roof,
although there is at least one person here who thinks the attic is a bad
idea. I think it's a good idea.
You may well need an antenna amplifer for one in the attic or even
morseso outside. I got one second hand which may have failed, and iirc
solidsignal has so many models I couldn't make up my mind. I shoudl
On Saturday, May 31, 2014 10:26:48 AM UTC-4, o m e H o m e G u y wrote:
How can the village idiot be consistently wrong about so many things?
LD <> analog. More analog TV channels than digital? Really? I guess
you didn't hear about the transition to ATSC many years ago.
Good grief you're dumb. Thanks for proving it yet again!
trader_4 stuck his foot in his mouth again by writing:
Yet again you show yourself to be the ignorant fool:
In September 2010, the FCC announced a proposal to set a hard deadline
of 2012 for low power stations to broadcast in digital, though this
deadline was not adopted.
On July 15, 2011, the Federal Communications Commission issued a final
ruling regarding Broadcast translator (TX), Low-powered (LP), and
Class-A low-powered (-CA) stations, requiring that analog transmitters
shut down by September 1, 2015.
Transmitters on channels 52 to 69 were required to vacate their channels
by December 31, 2011, but may remain in analog on another channel until
the September 1, 2015 deadline. As part of the rules that were imposed,
low power VHF stations on channels 2 to 6 can transmit with a maximum
ERP 3 kW instead of the previously allowed maximum of 0.3 kW.
Unless you went to the FCC website data portal and looked up every
transmitter, it's a good bet that any stations with call signs ending
with -CD and -LP are broadcasting in analog. Maybe even the -TX
(translator channels) as well.
The TVfool link I gave earlier, when selecting only analog channels,
gives this list:
KQHO-LD (rf channel 56)
KVDO-LP (rf channel 25)
KJIB-LP (rf channel 5)
KUMY-LD (rf channel 22)
So you will note that two of those are "-LD".
This seems informative:
Any station call sign ending with "-TV" or with no suffix is a
Full-Service analog transmitter. In theory, none of those should
currently exist, yet the OP's TVfool channel list shows about a dozen
such callsigns with either "-TV" or no suffix.
Any station call sign ending with "-CA" is Class A Analog.
Any station call sign ending with "-LD" are apparently Low Power
Digital, yet TV fool shows several -LD stations as being analog.
So the -suffix used in the call sign is inconsistent in terms of
identifying which transmitters are broadcasting analog signals.
But the bottom line is that there are probably dozens (if not hundreds)
of tv transmitters scattered across the US that are broadcasting analog
NTSC signals, and they have the legal mandate to continue to do so until
Now tell me why I have to educate you on how things like this work in
your own country?
But you told the OP that there were 15 analog stations broadcasting
in his area and that the number of analog stations exceeded the number
of digital ones available. In fact, on your list of 4 examples, not
one is broadcasting analog. They are either digital or dead. Not that
it matters, because as you can see from those sorry examples, they barely
qualify as TV stations to begin with. Most of them don't even have a
Because going through the roof weakens the signal, by 30% he said.
Idon't remember if we discussed how much going through the walls
weakened the signal. Not the same materials so I'm not assuming it's
Because to a large extent, a weak signal works as well as a strong
signal with digital. Despite what they said, there is a marginal area
inbetween good picture and no picture. and an increase of 3/7ths in
signal strength would probably make a station like that much better, but
IME in most cases, if it doesn't work out in the attic, you can move
thesame antenna to the roof later. Since I already had an antenna
cable goingto the attic, it took me, in addition to the time it took to
unwrap, unfold, and do the minimal assembly of the antenna, which would
have to be done toput it outside too, maybe 5 minutes to find boxes to
rest it on. It would have taken longer were there no boxes there
already. I used empty boxes, but I don't think there is any need to.
The roof provides additional protection against surface corrosion. And,
nothing lowers the Q of those elements faster than a bit of corrosion!
Even a 'rough' surface is not so good. Check out the 'skin depth' for
aluminum at 100MHz to 500MHz and you'll see.
I would bet the loss through the roof is less than the loss caused by
corrosion after one year. Ooops, guess you could anodize the surface!, or
Jon's home made antenna may be just what you need. You will have to try
it to find out.
In general, the antenna will have greater range if it is higher. It is
directional and must be pointed toward the station you want to receive.
If you live where stations are in widely different directions, you may
need an antenna rotator.
Even the best installation can have drop-outs. There are times when you
receive the same signal from two different directions and they cancel.
I often have a problem with reflections from low flying aircraft from a
small nearby airport.
I'm not sure I have any good advice to add, but for
what it's worth, in my experience it all depends on
where you are. I used to live in the city, on the first
floor and got nothing. A cheap Radio Shack antenna
on the roof gave me dozens of stations. I have a
brother in NH who needs a giant, motorized antenna
just to get a few stations. Where I live now is near
broadcast towers. I get 40+ stations very well with
nothing but rabbit ears on the floor next to the TV.
(First floor.) Oddly, there's also a TV on the 3rd floor
with a small antenna that gets slightly less good
The only problem I usually have is occasional glitchiness
when it's very windy. I don't know why. Maybe the
So... All that's to say that while your antenna can
make a difference, the reception it gets is more important.
If your reception is so-so with an in-house antenna then
if you can get a less obstructed line to the broadcast
antennas from the roof then it should help.
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