Several days ago, CC shifted to all encryption (which I knew was eventually coming), so my Basic Basic needed a box to watch. Before encryption I could use my TV turner to select channels and had most of the locals in HD. After encryption all were SD and I lost the use of my DVR unless I set the channel on the box.
I complained to CC and they sent an HD box, but that would not solve my basic DVR problem, plus I like to watch football with PIP so can follow two games at once, and that was lost.
I checked the available options on the net and found, with Plex and my Roku 3 and Hulu Free I could watch all the OTA biggies (CBS, NBC...) shows plus many that were not on Basic Basic like food, comedy etc.all in HD! In essence, except for sports, I did not need CC. I decided to stick with CC until after the footbll season, but after watching this past weekend, gave up. Poor picture, no dvr, no PIP... why bother.
I had checked several websites to see if an antenna would work at my location. I could not see any channels with a "digital" indoor antenna and the different websites that showed which channels would be available only had MPBN and Fox. I am at the bottom of a hill, lots of trees and the stations are all behind the hill except for Fox and MPBN. To get those channels,which the websites were not optimistic, would require a major outlay for a large antenna, rotator, strapping or mount and the like, or about $200 +. As I am getting a bit long in the tooth, I also figured to have someone else put it up, so that would add considerably. Even then, I might not get them.
I did a bit more research and decided, after the excellent reviews on Amazon, to try the Clear Stream 2V, a VHF/UHF 50 mile antenna. Compared to the giant span of the long range antenna, it is a dink, so I did not expect much but at least I would have Fox for some football and MPBN.
I got it yesterday and to insure I had good cabling, plugged it in on my second floor landing. Got MPBN, Fox and, hallelujah, CBS! Two football channels. By By CC!. So I moved it up to the attic, its final destination since there was no way I was going go up on the roof as well as spending much more money. Ran the channel search and got NBC and ABC along with their sub channels. Also got an analog channel- 14! So now have 2 ABC, 2 NBC, CBS, Fox, 3 MPBN and all in better HD than I got from CC. I am back to when I got the HD channels in the clear over coax with CC. The antenna was only $71 with free shipping and a free mount from Amazon, so my payback is a bit more than three months and after that I get the $17 + with no worries about all the problems with cable.
I have everything back! This moning I used my two DVRs just like before. I can watch football in HD and PIP. I have Plex streaming from my den computer thhrough my Roku for many more HD both cable and OTA programs, many more than even CC can offer, like older CBS shows- all FREE! You might want to check Plex out even if you have cable as it has so much more. It needs a computer with a dual process and a feed, like Roku, to the TV. You might experience some drops, I had two in four plus hours of viewing (NCIS, Person of Interest and others in HD). All I did was FF to the place when it dropped.
To run Plex, all I need to do is turn on my computer in the den, turn on Plex and watch the shows with my Roku. If you select the CBS channel on Plex, it breaks down to all CBS shows with most episodes, plus literally hundreds of past CBS shows and all on demand and all free.In essence I have a better TV package than I had when I was paying nearly $100 to Direct. The only thing I miss is ESPN and other sports (football) channels. My guess is they will soon be available for streaming for a fee. Some already are on the Roku, like MLB and NBA., but I like football.
All it took was those excellent folks at CC to show me that it was time to drop them. Truth is, if you are only watching shows on cable, and not sports, there is no reason to pay for it since just about everything is free on the net. Now, my major TV monthly cost is $8 for netflix and I might go to Hulu + for another $8 or so. The total is less than I was paying for TV constrained by a box and mostly SD from CC.
So will drop CC today.
I wonder what additional channels I would have picked up if I had mover the antenna to a roof mount? It was an excellent choice.