General Atlanta OTA Information - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 02-14-2001, 12:47 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm out in the south Snellville area with a Mits 55", Dish 6000 and OTA, using a $49 RS UHF/VHF in the attic. Get mainly 80s and 90s on strength and rcv all four Atlanta DTV stations. If you live on the east side, your welcome to drop in.
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post #2 of 19 Old 02-14-2001, 12:53 PM
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I live in Alpharetta. Elite 710, DISH6000+OTA, attic Radio Shack antenna + amplifier.

Signal strenghts vary, but are between 70%(ABC) and 90% (CBS).

You're welcome to stop by and see for yourself.

Rino


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Semi-crappy soundsystem
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post #3 of 19 Old 02-14-2001, 01:05 PM
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I live in Alpharetta with a 190" Yagi in my attic with $49 Radio Shack booster. Unfortunately, I don't get same results as these other guys...I''m seeing high 80s for NBC (10) and ABC (39), but mixed from 50-75 on Fox (27(27) and really bad with CBS (19).

CBS comes in very poorly for me.

I put a smaller Radio Shack (150" yagi) antenna on my roof (just layed it there for the day) without a booster and got all four exceptionally well.

If you can, I'd suggest On the Roof mounting--and just get over it. I will be mounting one on the roof soon.

As far as retail outlets...buddy, you should learn as much as you can here. Best Buys seens to have the biggest selection, but very few (if any) of their employees knows what HDTV is or even if it really exists.

I haven't talked with anyone in HiFi Buys in a long time, but they didn't know much about 6 months ago...they might have a clue now.

Buy your antenna from Radio Shack--don't spend too much and don't be fooled by the "Digital Ready" or "HDTV Compatible" logos...its the same thing.

And you are more than welcome to stop by for a demonstration...

Kev
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post #4 of 19 Old 02-14-2001, 04:28 PM
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That all sounds very encouraging.

I'm about to get a 53" Hitachi HDTV
ready. I get an employee discount ;-).

We rent a DVD a couple of times a month,
but don't watch much TV. What we do
watch is almost entirely broadcast over
the air. Prime time this or that from
the major networks.

My AT&T digital cable is not digital
on the channels we watch. Only the
high numbered channels, which we don't.
The picture isn't bad, but my reading
of these topics is that we can the ones
we want, better, for free. I don't
want satelite anything, and I would
like to get rid of cable.

I'm "OTA-centric".

I live in Tucker, maybe 2 miles outside
the perimeter. I want to get an OTA
only set-top box (I think the Samsung
SIR-T150 is the only one) and as much
antenna as I need without over doing it.

That's where this topic comes in. It's
all about who's broadcasting what in the
Atlanta area, from where, on what channels,
with what kind of signal quality and also
strength. I am very encouraged to hear
of others who've had success doing what I
want to do. I guess it's about set-top
boxes and antennas too.

Seeing is believing. I've stopped into a
number of stores and asked if they had an
antenna on the roof, were they able to pick
up HD signals, etc. So far, I've never
seen an HD signal, picked up from a ter-
restial OTA source. Not seeing, so far,
has been doubting.

I have lots of questions, of the sort that
actually seeing some else's system work,
or even just talking to someone who's did
this, would answer best. I'll list a few,
but hope to talk to someone soon:

Is the same thing sent on channel 10
as channel 11? HD or not, it is the
same stuff with the same commercials?
Ditto, of course, for the other pairs?

Is channel 10, for example, always a
rock solid digital signal, equal to
or better than cable?

The HD tuner is basically either
locked on or not?

What quality of analog signal does one
need to compare to a digital signal
which locks on?

Are the pairs of towers co-located?

How are the analog signals around the
area, and do you need the biggest
antenna to get the best picture, or
is big enough as good as too big?

Hope to hear more from the locals. Is
there a local HDTV user's group, by any
chance?


-CB-

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post #5 of 19 Old 02-14-2001, 07:12 PM
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I live in Lawrenceville and I use a 110" Yagi-style UHF/VHF antenna that is mounted inside my attic and I receive all four OTA digital networks without a problem. If you're only two miles outside the parameter in Tucker then (barring major obstructions) you shouldn't have any problems receiving the OTA networks.

Happy HD viewing,



------------------
DMan
The Academy Home Theater

Darren Alcorn (DMan)

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post #6 of 19 Old 02-14-2001, 09:00 PM
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I saw a topic about some particular Atlanta
station with several respondents.

I would like to talk to people about OTA
issues in general in the Atlanta area.

How is DT reception from various areas?

What types of antennas are people using
from different locations around town?

What retail outlets have people who know
what they are talking about, and can sell
equipment like STBs and antennas?

Is anyone interested in meeting at a
coffee shop somewhere to talk about HDTV
in Atlanta?

Would anyone consider letting me view
their setup, especially with OTA reception?

-CB-

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post #7 of 19 Old 02-15-2001, 05:45 AM
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A meeting with all the HD addicts would be great. I'm in.

Paul
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post #8 of 19 Old 02-15-2001, 06:28 AM
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Is the same thing sent on channel 10 as channel 11? HD or not, it is the
same stuff with the same commercials? Ditto, of course, for the other pairs?
--Mostly, this is true. CBS football had entirely different cameras, and a different broadcast team calling the game. Basically, though, the stations broadcast identical content--occasionally, you'll get a different commercial on the digital channel, but this is rare.

Is channel 10, for example, always a rock solid digital signal, equal to or better than cable?
--YES! I have DirecTV and every digital channel OTA is better than ANY other version of the same channel. This is true even when watching through S-VHS (non digital).

The HD tuner is basically either locked on or not?
--If you mean you either get a picture or you don't..then is is partly true. From time to time, though, I'll lose audio, or the picture will get "confused" or "blocky." Last year, ABC MNF had trouble with their broadcasts and it was as though the picture was broken into 8 different squares and re-arranged randomly.

What quality of analog signal does one need to compare to a digital signal
which locks on?
--To be honest, there is no comparison. The digital signal is 100% pure--it looks crystal clear. I have never seen an analog signal that good.

Are the pairs of towers co-located?
--I don't know, but some of the towers are located near each other. Somebody has a URL that tells you that. You might try a search on this forum.

How are the analog signals around the area, and do you need the biggest
antenna to get the best picture, or is big enough as good as too big?
--I believe it is dependant on the distance you are from the towers. I've been told (by people that should know, that if you try using large antenna's too close you will have as much trouble as trying to use a small antenna far away.

Hope to hear more from the locals. Is there a local HDTV user's group, by any chance?
--This is it. With all the knowledge on this forum, it's hard to imagine getting started with HDTV without it.

Kevin
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post #9 of 19 Old 02-15-2001, 08:06 AM
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I really appreciate the enthusiasm.

I don't check any particular web site
religiously, and I could easily miss
a communication from someone local that
I *really* wish I hadn't missed.

So I have setup ahdtv at yahoogroups.com.
If you are not familiar with that, it
is basically an e-mail exploder list
server thing which is free and I've used
it for other purposes. It is like a
discussion group by e-mail, which is
better for low-volume things which you
want drawn to your attention.

Trust me, this mechanism won't send you
any spam, can be moderated if needed,
and is as easy to unsubscribed from as
easily as it can be subscribed to.

This is for Atlanta HDTV only.

To subscribe, send e-mail to:

mailto:ahdtv-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

To unsubscribe, send e-mail to:

mailto:ahdtv-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com

There is a web site where you can review
historical mails and change your mode to
get one summary per day (or no mail, just
review historical mode).

I hope you will subscribe.

-CB-

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post #10 of 19 Old 02-16-2001, 10:43 AM
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CB,

I am going to throw you for a small loop. If you are really serious about being OTA centric and not doing Dish or DirecTV, then you might want to consider a Home Theater PC, and a HiPix card. The HiPix card is an OTA reciever on a card which goes into your PC. You plug the coax from the antenna into the card and presto, your PC can display OTA HD. If you have not purchased your DVD player, you can take the money that you would spend on a DVD player and the STB, and buy a HTPC with a HiPix card. You will then have the absolute best picture quality for DVD's, a great OTA HD setup, and a continuous steam of improvements that you can download in the form of software to make it all better and more convenient.

Cheers,

Bernd
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post #11 of 19 Old 02-16-2001, 10:51 AM
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Interesting idea, but I'm a TV watcher,
not a computer watcher. I am just about
to get a 53" Hitachi. You're talking
about the Haugpauge PC card? Does that
have component outputs?

I have to sell this to my better half,
and she's more likely to accept something
TV like than something computer like.

Part of the justification is dropping
cable and applying that cash to the
STB. So I also have to get PBS OTA
analog. Other OTA analog is not that
relevant.



-CB-

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post #12 of 19 Old 02-16-2001, 12:53 PM
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Hi CB and welcome to the AVSForum!

Your wife will come around once she sees the difference. Tell your wife I said to relax and enjoy your new toys. It's all fun... In fact, the only danger is once you've seen HDTV there is NO going back...

According to TitanTV WPBA 30 should be on the air this September. Just enter your name and address and TitanTV will show you all the stations in your area. Also UPN 69 is due to go on air this June or thereabouts.

Btw, when typing a post, simply keep typing and don't hit enter unless you want to create a new paragraph. This should solve the formatting issue. If you want to use any special formatting, bulleted lists, urls, etc., just click on *UBB Code is ON and a window will open listing what you can use and how to code it.

Linda

Life's a roller coaster. Wear a seatbelt and don't stand up on the hills...
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post #13 of 19 Old 02-17-2001, 12:43 PM
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CB->Bernd:

Does the thing have Composite Video
outputs? That's what I need. My
HDTV is on the way to me, so that's
a DM (descision made).

What about remote control? That
would be tough to give up.


-CB-

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post #14 of 19 Old 02-17-2001, 09:39 PM
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CB,

The 53" TV becomes the monitor to the HTPC. You need something in between the TV and the cable to decode the signals. DO NOT buy a TV with an integrated HDTV tuner. That locks you in. After you buy your TV, you are going to need to either buy that Samsung OTA box, or something else. If you have not bought the DVD player yet, the HTPC with a HiPix card will make a wonderful DVD player and HT set top box. You will also get as side benefits things like game playing on your 53" TV, web surfing on your 53" TV, etc. You will also get BAR NONE the best DVD picture. I watch DVD's on a 110" screen this way, and it is awesome.

Cheers,

Bernd
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post #15 of 19 Old 02-18-2001, 06:00 AM
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CB,

The output of a HTPC is VGA (which is the same thing as 5 BNC or RDBHV). If your set has neither a VGA input, nor RGBHV, then you need an Audio Authority transcoder which is a simple little box that converts the VGA/RGBHV signal to component.

As for remote control, I use an Airboard keyboard, which communicates via IR to an IR reciever which plugs into the mouse and keyboard inputs in the PC. I teach a Pronto the Airboard commands to operate my theater. In PowerDVD (the DVD player) the enter key is play. So, there is a play icon in my Pronto which sends the IR command for enter to the PC. This causes a DVD to play.

If you are going to have any complexity at all in your theater, I highly recommend a Pronto. You can download Pronto files for the support of almost all popular HT gear at Prontoedit.com.

I also recommend that you spend a week searching through the Home Theater Computer forum here. Do searches on Audio Authority, HTPC Remote Control, etc.

Cheers,

Bernd
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post #16 of 19 Old 02-18-2001, 04:24 PM
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Hey, just an update for you on my own OTA experience. I have a 190" Radio Shack Yagi with $39 booster in my attic. I was getting a solid 85 or so with NBC and a pretty good ABC..but Fox and CBS sucked.

I put a 150" on my roof (just set it there) and got CBS in the 80's with no booster.

So..given experience here (for Alpharettians), I moved my antenna in my attic so that the angle was more westerly...now I get a solid FOX and CBS, and a 75 or so with NBC. ABC--well, not so good ~50s.

So...you might be successful with Attic mount--just be prepared to spend a good day with the wife calling out numbers from your media room!

ALSO: Just my opinion on the Home Theater PC. . . When I was looking, it wasn't ready for prime-time. I mean...what will happen in the middle of a good show when your PC beeps with an error "Driver Error." You gonna reboot? Give me individual boxes with specific tasks. I've had too many problems with my DVD player in my laptop to think this is ready, yet.

...just my two cents.

Kevin
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post #17 of 19 Old 02-18-2001, 04:32 PM
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I've setup a database for Atlantans to
indicate their reception quality. It
is a very simple table which relates
the type of equipment, location, and
reception quality. If a bunch of us
fill out a row in the table for our
own situation, it will give a good
overall picture for newbies as well
as our own reference.

Once again, I encourage you to sign
up for a subscription to the group,
which you can do by sending any mail
to:

ahdtv-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

You can go to www.yahoogroups.com
and locate the ahdtv group. That
is where the database is located.

That's not to take anything away from
AVSForum. This is only for Atlanta
people to discuss local topics.

-CB-

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post #18 of 19 Old 02-18-2001, 04:47 PM
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Let me play Devil's Advocate for a moment. There's one large problem with taking Atlanta discussions to an off-forum location: We lose the input of other forum members. A great deal of what I've learned has come from the posts of others around the country, often those of broadcasters who have more technical expertise.

Just a thought. An off-forum mailing list of Atlanta viewers can supliment but not take the place of information posted on this or other forums. Of course, that's just my opinion...I could be wrong.

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post #19 of 19 Old 02-18-2001, 05:47 PM
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The off-line thing is a mail-list
type of thing. About where who
can meet and when, and which store
has a knowledgable person. If we
put that on the AVS Forum, I will
miss it within all the other chat.

I'm for it being only about us and
local issues. I wouldn't want every
message posted here to be e-mailed
to me. I wouldn't want to check
here to see if someone wanted to meet
for coffee or tell about a good lead
in a local store. I want that by
mail. That's the idea, anyhow.

-CB-

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