U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Rural and Small Town Living
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 09-03-2010, 07:14 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
14,719 posts, read 45,824,484 times
Reputation: 13608

Advertisements

When we got the switch to digital, the signal was not quite as good in terms of strength, but an outdoor antenna with an amplifier (available from Radio Shack) lets us get about 12 channels (most of the old channels have "split" into 2-5 different sub-channels) over the air. Forest, seems to me you don't have the right kind of antenna or it's not pointed in the right direction, or maybe it's not big enough. Your discussion of aiming the antenna makes me think you are getting about all the performance available from the hardware you have now.

Here is a website that will recommend the type of antenna for your area.
AntennaWeb
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 09-04-2010, 09:09 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
31,146 posts, read 50,314,105 times
Reputation: 19849
Radio shack sells antennas. We have their largest, highest dB gain TV antenna. Before the switch, I could point it in one direction to receive two channels. Or swing it around to another direction to get a third channel. It stands at about 24 foot above grade on flat ground. There are no mountains or hills for many miles in any direction. [besides this we are in Maine, there are very few mountains anyway and even those are fairly small]. We live in a flatland area. Now after the switch. I can slowly do a complete 360 degree circle with it.

If we lived further North then we would begin to pickup Canada stations.



When I asked our zoning and permits people [LURC] about going higher I was told that to go above 40-foot would require a permit and I was sent a brochure about the high requirements for lights. I threw it away.



Before the shutdown, we were using an electric signal booster. It did help to clear up some of the signal. We got PBS real strong and clear. Without the signal booster on the weakest channel you would only get the sound. The video sync-signal was too weak for the video to stop rolling. With the signal booster we not only got the sound but also as the video faded in or out and we would get glimpses of the video. The third channel was weak, snowy, staticky without the signal booster, with the signal booster it was a clearer picture. But it's transmitter was in a different direction, so to get it meant going up on the roof and re-positioning the antenna.



The state had been subsidizing PBS. In their budget cuts the state stopped funding the PBS TV broadcast in favour of only subsidizing the PBS radio stations. So to the last that I was aware of it, the local PBS no longer transmits a TV signal.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-04-2010, 07:03 PM
 
1,297 posts, read 3,158,208 times
Reputation: 1506
I watch TV on the internet. It sounds wild, but ever since the Ex moved out, and took every darn thing in the house including the TV, I haven't watched much! (LOL)

No need to anyway, I got enough to do without that distraction.

Most of the better stations allows you to watch TV shows and episodes online, and hulu has some on it too. For those people lucky enough not to have an ex, or at least an ex that was semi-amicable, and thus have a TV, perhaps you could hook your computer to your TV and do away with the satellite/cable bill?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-05-2010, 12:09 AM
 
11,151 posts, read 14,285,268 times
Reputation: 18802
Quote:
Originally Posted by darstar View Post
We get all the local TV stations on the Sat. now , so that problem is solved. I think its a federal requirement these days, they can't block you out from local like before. The Cable Companies fought that one....hopefully they have lost forever on all the restrictions.
Unfortunately, satellite providers still charge extra for local channels, and don't air them in all areas. I have Direct TV, and the only local channel they'll give me (for $5.00/month extra) is PBS. Dish TV says they COULD give me local channels, but I'd have to cut down a number of trees so the dish can pick up the signal, and I'm not willing to do that.

At this point, I'm getting by with satellite for "cable stations," and using an indoor antenna to pick up the local stations within range (no ABC). I also have satellite internet, since neither cable nor DSL are available, and my only other option would be <*shudder*> dial-up.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-05-2010, 08:35 AM
 
Location: State of Superior
8,629 posts, read 14,072,735 times
Reputation: 2771
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark of the Moon View Post
Unfortunately, satellite providers still charge extra for local channels, and don't air them in all areas. I have Direct TV, and the only local channel they'll give me (for $5.00/month extra) is PBS. Dish TV says they COULD give me local channels, but I'd have to cut down a number of trees so the dish can pick up the signal, and I'm not willing to do that.

At this point, I'm getting by with satellite for "cable stations," and using an indoor antenna to pick up the local stations within range (no ABC). I also have satellite internet, since neither cable nor DSL are available, and my only other option would be <*shudder*> dial-up.
Too bad you can't get local on your sat. Its common here , but only for the last year was it available..... I had sat. internet for years, always a problem. Then when we lost Starband , and had to go with Sky Blue, which was real crap....that' when I went to an Air card/wireless. MyFi works great, faster that Sat. and easier to operate in bad weather.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-05-2010, 12:20 PM
 
11,151 posts, read 14,285,268 times
Reputation: 18802
Quote:
Originally Posted by darstar View Post
Too bad you can't get local on your sat. Its common here , but only for the last year was it available..... I had sat. internet for years, always a problem. Then when we lost Starband , and had to go with Sky Blue, which was real crap....that' when I went to an Air card/wireless. MyFi works great, faster that Sat. and easier to operate in bad weather.
Unfortunately, there's only one cell provider that works in my area -- and I never get more than three bars here at the house. Ahhhhhhhhhh, country life .....
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-05-2010, 12:30 PM
 
Location: State of Superior
8,629 posts, read 14,072,735 times
Reputation: 2771
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark of the Moon View Post
Unfortunately, there's only one cell provider that works in my area -- and I never get more than three bars here at the house. Ahhhhhhhhhh, country life .....
Have you considered a booster, and or an outside antenna? There are several options avaiable in rural areas. We have the same thing in more remote areas of the County. Some folks have banded together and installed repeaters also. The outside antenna is the cheapest and most effective along with the " booster" device.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-08-2010, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
14,719 posts, read 45,824,484 times
Reputation: 13608
Quote:
Originally Posted by forest beekeeper View Post
Radio shack sells antennas. We have their largest, highest dB gain TV antenna. Before the switch, I could point it in one direction to receive two channels. Or swing it around to another direction to get a third channel. It stands at about 24 foot above grade on flat ground. There are no mountains or hills for many miles in any direction. [besides this we are in Maine, there are very few mountains anyway and even those are fairly small]. We live in a flatland area. Now after the switch. I can slowly do a complete 360 degree circle with it.

If we lived further North then we would begin to pickup Canada stations.



When I asked our zoning and permits people [LURC] about going higher I was told that to go above 40-foot would require a permit and I was sent a brochure about the high requirements for lights. I threw it away.



Before the shutdown, we were using an electric signal booster. It did help to clear up some of the signal. We got PBS real strong and clear. Without the signal booster on the weakest channel you would only get the sound. The video sync-signal was too weak for the video to stop rolling. With the signal booster we not only got the sound but also as the video faded in or out and we would get glimpses of the video. The third channel was weak, snowy, staticky without the signal booster, with the signal booster it was a clearer picture. But it's transmitter was in a different direction, so to get it meant going up on the roof and re-positioning the antenna.



The state had been subsidizing PBS. In their budget cuts the state stopped funding the PBS TV broadcast in favour of only subsidizing the PBS radio stations. So to the last that I was aware of it, the local PBS no longer transmits a TV signal.
Well, if you are interested in it, you could go up to the 40' limit and put a rotator on the antenna, see if you can pick up the signal then. Try the website I indicated, they seem to be pretty good. At the same time you could spend the money and do the work to raise your existing antenna, or even replace it, and still not get a "satisfactory" signal.

You are objectively correct that the new signal is just not as robust as the old one. Back when the analog signals were still up, I could sometimes get Spokane's PBS signal here, depending on atmospheric conditions. What I actually had was a VHF Channel 7 specific antenna, put a signal amplifier on it, and pointed it right at Spokane's transmitter. (this to get Doctor Who, of course...) I honestly don't know how much more efficient a dedicated channel specific antenna is compared to a wide-band type. Sometimes when the sunspots were low, I could pull in the Doctor in full color, no snow, and good sound. When the sunspots were up, not so much, sometimes not even a good enough signal to watch.

Dumb luck provided me with the "butt" end of the Yagi antenna pointing more or less at Yakima, and this makes a decent UHF antenna.

This same setup is now serving as an antenna for the digital signals.

I am thinking about getting a dedicated UHF antenna to replace the Yagi. A limb fell on it and while it's fairly mangled looking, it still works (way better than you would guess to look at it)

Maybe your first move is to see if you still have PBS TV available. Assuming that's the channel you want the most. Our PBS channel turned into 4 digital channels, including "Create", which the wife just loves.

BTW, PBS is the TV outfit, NPR is the radio outfit, they are not really connected at the national level, although out in the sticks frequently the same local crew does both.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-08-2010, 04:45 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
31,146 posts, read 50,314,105 times
Reputation: 19849
I am not a fan of PBS, that was the one station that folks in our town used to get that was clear.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-08-2010, 04:53 PM
 
Location: State of Superior
8,629 posts, read 14,072,735 times
Reputation: 2771
NPR on the radio is more entertaining... PBS has a lot of competition these days.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Rural and Small Town Living
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top