Just got HDTV! What Can I do NOW?

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Hector X. Cruz, Apr 7, 2003.

  1. Hector X. Cruz

    Hector X. Cruz Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey, everybody!

    I finally got myself an actual BIG-screen TV! And it's HDTV with a built-in tuner! I am so psyched. I got a great deal on a Sony KDP-57XBR2 at Tweeter. I fell in love with the set, which they were feeding an HD signal on the floor and it blew me away!

    It took a lot of convincing my wife to get it, but now it's done. It's being delivered tomorrow, Tuesday.

    BUT . . . my wife does not want me to spend even more money on any other upgrades for the moment, and that includes any satellite upgrades to get HDTV programming through DISH network.

    So my question is this: My TV has "All-format ATSC reception, decoder built in" and I understand that I should just be able to connect an HDTV antenna and get my local HDTV channels. Is this the case? If so, what is a good indoor HDTV antenna that I can use? Please let me know as I am and HDTV newbie trying to take maximum advantage of my new TV.


    Thanks!

    -Hector
     
  2. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Congrats on your purchase, Hector. And, yes, you can receive HDTV over the air (and for free). Check with your local stations to see which are broadcasting digital programming; I imagine you have quite a few in Chicago. As for antennae, I like Terk's products. Get one designed for HD reception; you can use an indoor antenna, but make sure it's located in an area free of signal-blocking obstructions (the attic is a good location). Enjoy your 1080i life!
     
  3. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    You'll need a UHF antenna to get the OTA HDTV stuff. There's nothing "magical" about a "HDTV" antenna, 99% of all HDTV is broadcast over the UHF frequency range/channels.

    But good reception/signal strength is highly dependent on where you live and nearby obstructions.
     
  4. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    Congrats [​IMG] and welcome to the club! [​IMG]

    Definitely get an antenna so you can start enjoying HD programming. Even the non-HD stuff on the HD channels should look better than your regular analog broadcasts. You'll never want to go back.

    Check here for some key info to start out:

    www.antennaweb.org

    You may find that getting OTA reception takes some trying much like regular analog OTA broadcasts, but I'm sure you'll feel it's all worth it once you have it working. For myself, I'm still using Time Warner Cable for HD service, but plan to switch to OTA for the locals as soon as more channels return to the airwaves over here--and will probably switch to DirecTV for the few paid channels of interest.

    Enjoy!

    _Man_
     
  5. Chris Moe

    Chris Moe Screenwriter

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    I have very good reception with a Zenith Silver Sensor indoor antenna. It runs about $40 dollars and it is fairly small. I should note that my theater is up in the attic and I can see the broadcast antenna if I stand on my roof, so I could probably use just about any antenna. But the Silver Sensor has gotten good marks by a lot of people.

    To see what kind of antenna you need check out http://www.antennaweb.org/aw/welcome.asp
     
  6. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    From what I understand, the Silver Sensor is directional, no? That might not be most suitable if he lives inside Chicago, instead of in the suburbs. Probably something omnidirectional and maybe w/ a signal amp would be good depending on his exact location in the city, unless of course, he's in the suburbs.

    _Man_
     
  7. Hector X. Cruz

    Hector X. Cruz Stunt Coordinator

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    I live in the Southwest Suburbs of Chicago, about 40 miles from the Sears Tower. As much as I would like the Silver Sensor, that antenna only receives UHF signals. I need a VHF/UHF combo if I want to receive CBS in Chicago. This would be a huge selling point for my wife since she loves CBS's Monday night sitcoms.

    Anybody use the Terk TV55? How good is it? I know I can mount it indoors. Is this a good idea?

    -Hector
     
  8. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    From what I gather, the Terk antennas are mostly style, little substance. Probably better off getting a RatShack antenna w/ a built-in amp.

    While this article (http://www.projectorexpert.com/Pages/antin.html) is old and the RS antennas no longer available, it's a good read for anybody wanting to get OTA reception. There are other useful articles along the same lines over there.

    _Man_
     
  9. Chris_Bald

    Chris_Bald Extra

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    If I was you I would try the cheapest outdoor antenna you could find. I got one from Radio Shack for $2.97. That is not a typo. They had a 6' antenna that was orignally 50 bucks or something for under three dollars. It had been in their stock so long they just kept lowering the price. From there I got up on the roof and started walking around with it until I got the best overall signal. I must say it is awesome watching shows like 24 and CSI in HD!
     

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