Do I need A rooftop Antenae for OTA HDTV???

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brian Fineberg, Feb 14, 2002.

  1. Brian Fineberg

    Brian Fineberg Second Unit

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    I am curious if there are any indoor antenaes that can be used?? I really would like to buy a STB to get OTA signals but don't want to insall a rooftop. Any thoughts??

    -B
     
  2. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    You can use an indoor antenna for HD reception. But you sure need to be in an area where you can receive a strong digital signal.
     
  3. Brian Fineberg

    Brian Fineberg Second Unit

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    how close to the source would you say I would have to be?? and how could I find that info out?

    -B
     
  4. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Do you know if any stations in your town are broadcasting on the digital frequencies yet? How far are you from Providence?

    Though I'm loathe to recommend Home Theater magazine to anyone, the rag does list all the up-and-running digital stations and their call signs. Perhaps you should log on to the magazine's Website (sorry, no link).

    You might also want to try Widescreen Review's Website.

    Anyone else have an answer to Brian's last question?
     
  5. Brian Fineberg

    Brian Fineberg Second Unit

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    Jack

    Thanks for the replies!! I am about 7 miles from Prov. I am going to check out HTM site andsee if I can find those things out. Thank again.

    -B
     
  6. Brian Fineberg

    Brian Fineberg Second Unit

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    ok here is the deal..
    NO Providence satstions but BOSTON stations and now we are talking like 45miles away?!?! Is this unthinkable or...[​IMG]
    Thanks again for you help....let me know
    -B
     
  7. Mark_HD

    Mark_HD Extra

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    it may have been a bit of overkill, but ... i went w/ the radio shack 160" rooftop antenna (currently 50% off) and installed it in my attic. i'm 40-ish miles from chicago and over the last 3 weeks have received an excellent digital/HD signal. i had to run 100 feet of cable so i bought 2 50 foot segments and installed an in-line power amplifier at the mid-point. perfect set-up, so far ... and very happy w/ HDTV!
     
  8. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    It really all depends on your line-of-sight to the transmitter. Since that area of New England (between Providence and Boston) is fairly flat, you've got a shott replicating the setup above. I wouldn't say it's a great one though.
     
  9. Chip_G

    Chip_G Auditioning

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    While I don't know much about the signal strength of your area, I do know that because it is a digital signal, the data being received is either going to get there, or it isn't, not like analog signals where it can "kind of" get there, and you end up with a picture and sound but you may experience a not so good picture. With the digital signal, if you're dropping packets, the program will be unwatchable because of all the stuttering.

    re: indoor antennae's. I have the Terk TV-55, it's about 3-4 feet long, and I installed it under my second floor window sill. I tested it while having it indoors, and it worked almost flawlessly as well, but I figured since it would be such an easy install, why not just hang it outside. It comes with EVERYTHING you could possible need to install it in any manner. It even includes a flat coaxial cable so you can run it under your window and not have to drill any holes in your wall. It is powered, and the power runs through the coaxial cable. It is also very sleek looking, so it would only compliment your setup and not distract your eyes.

    My 2 cents,

    Chip-
     
  10. Brian Fineberg

    Brian Fineberg Second Unit

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    Great thanks for the replies guys!! I just found out that all of the local providence stations wiull be airing live digital signals starting may 1st so that should help a ton!! I just figured i may be moving in a year and don't want to install anything that will be permanent or difficult to move. Thanks for the input!!

    -B
     
  11. TylerL

    TylerL Extra

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    Sorry to repeat the above message...

    but i just want to make sure that EVERYONE understands that with a *digital* signal it does not matter how far or how close you are to the transmitter. There is no such thing as static interference or decreasing signal strength.

    You either get the signal full on...with 100% clarity or you get no signal. There is no in-between.
     
  12. Mark_HD

    Mark_HD Extra

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    ... i didn't mention in my first post. i did test an Indoor HD Antenna from Radio Shack (was about $80). i used a long coax cable to run it abound my house. there was one spot that it worked well (second story wall closest to Chicago) ... but i wasn't going to leave it in that location. you could always test it and return if the reception's no good.
     
  13. AllenD

    AllenD Second Unit

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    Go to Antennaweb.org and see what kind of outdoor antenna you'll need. It wouldn't hurt to try an indoor first as long as you have a 30 day return policy if it doesn't work. I use a Radio Shack double bow tie and it works fine.
     
  14. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    Tyler is correct.

    The higher you mount the antenna the better your line of sight will be and the better your reception will be. I'd go for an attic install if at all possible. I have a 10' long Radio Shack antenna mounted in my attic. I'm 30 miles from Washington, DC and I get excellent reception.
     
  15. TylerL

    TylerL Extra

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    I don't want to beat a dead horse (maybe too late) or be a jerk guys...

    but you all still seem to use terms like "you'll get better reception" when you should be saying "placing the antenna higher up to increase your LOS will increase your probability that you will get the signal".

    If you live 1 mile from a hi-def transmitter or if you live 30 miles away from it...reguardless of *any* other varibles... if you both are receiving the signal...you both have the exact same picture quaility (assuming you both have hi-def tv's).
     
  16. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    Tyler,

    If the antenna is too low then you won't pick up as many channels as you will when the antenna is higher. Line of sight is a big issue. So yes, the "reception" will be better. On an RCA DTC-100 you need signal strength of 30 or better or you won't have an image. If you strength is 30'ish you will lose you signal on a regular basis. If signal strength is 70'ish then you will most likely have an uninterrupted signal. Again, the *reception* is better. If you do view the signal at both 30 and 70 the image will appear the same but the 30 signal is just barely hanging in there. I do custom installations for a living and have worked with dozens of high definition installs. I've got a pretty good idea of how to please my clients so that I don't get a call asking why they lost high definition during the middle of a show they've invited ten friends over to see. Regards.
     
  17. RoyGBiv

    RoyGBiv Stunt Coordinator

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    Brian,
    I live in Pawtcucket. I get excellent reception of all five digital stations from Boston. I have the Radio Shack 190 antenna in my attic just lying on the joists. (I got his antenna 5 years ago for about $40. I think it is currently on sale for about that now.) I do not use an amplifier and get reception of 75 to 95 from all the stations. You should point your antenna northeast trying to get the best picture on ANALOG station 44 (WGBX) because it is broadcasting from the same tower as digital 20, 30, and 19 (ABC, NBC, and PBS). FOX and NBC are in the same area but don't use the same tower. If you can get a good picture on analog 44 and don't get many ghosts, you will pick up the digital (and HD) signals without problem.
    I have to burst your bubble about the Providence locals, but they are listed as going live on May 1 because that is when they are supposed to go live by law. They (and numerous other stations around the country) are going to miss that deadline by months or years. I don't believe any of the Providence stations has even started their conversion process.
    There are others in Warwick and Johnston who are getting Boston without difficulty, and you should be able to, also. For more information about the signals from Boston, go to www.avsforum.com and go to the HD Hardware forum. Search for the "Boston Tower" thread. It is 30 or 40 pages long, and will have more information than you could possibly imagine.
    Good luck.
    SMK
     
  18. Sean Patrick

    Sean Patrick Supporting Actor

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    So if my house is up on a hill, having it higher on my house is not an issue?

    i'm thinking of picking up that Terk 55 too, but i've heard horrible things about Terk. Should i stay away from it?

    it says it can be integrated into your satellite from the outside but since i'll have a directivo hooked up i'm not sure how that's going to work.

    thanks

    Sean
     
  19. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    Sean,

    Even if your house is on a hill you will increase the likelyhood that you will receive the signal if you elevate the antenna.
     
  20. JohnDPug

    JohnDPug Extra

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    This is amazing. 30 years ago my dad put up a second antenna on the roof to receive the CBS affiliate in New Haven CT so we could watch the Giants home football games which were blacked out since they didn't sell out Yankee Stadium in those days. He rigged something up with a knifeswitch and I rememeber him turning the antenna pole with this hands on the roof and yelling downstairs to me asking if the picture was better or worse. A few years later, cable was available in our area and we abandoned the antennas. Every so often we'd laugh about the "old" antenna technology like it was the horse and buggy.
    Dad's gone now but he'd be laughing his butt off reading this thread about having to hook up aerials again. [​IMG]
     

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