Initial thoughts on my HDTV experience in Pittsburgh...
I live in a three story house in the East End of Pittsburgh, in Friendship, where Shadyside and Bloomfield meet. I have a NEC LT150 front projector projecting about a 100' 4:3 image.
I consider myself an early adopter. I bought my first hifi vcr in 1985 (can you say over a grand
), was an early home theater pro logic guy, used one of my first bonuses thirteen years ago to buy a powered sub, and had dvd and dolby digital before DD was even available on receivers.
All that said, I am disappointed in my first excursion in HDTV. I have been a E* customer for over seven years. My boss, who had both premium cable and E*, gave up on the DSS and sold me his DISH 6000 receiver for $50. I had considered buying one previously, but with the whole D*/E* merger thing, held off.
While nice enough, there just isn't enough programming to get excited about on E*. And that switching between SD and HD when you want to output for recording purposes... Plus the thought of having to pay extra for each HD channel doesn't thrill me.
So with free on my mind, I bought the 8VSB add in to pick up my locals from the DISH6000 and the in house radio shack antenna that looks like a rack for a toaster oven.
The locals also don't inspire me. I can pick up PXI, KDKA, QED, FOX and WB all with signal strengths close to 80%. Even so, I can't watch more that 5 minutes on any station without losing sounding, block artifacts or freeze ups. WTAE doesn't register anything at any time, regardless of antenna orientation. And, of the stations I can receive, do any other than PBS or KDKA broadcast anything in HDTV?
All in all, looks nice but seems to be a big hassle. The thought of installing an external antenna to get this minimal HDTV programming hardly seems worth it at this point. I may sell the 8vsb and get the comcast package when they come calling (but we've been waiting for the Pittsburgh cable upgrade in the east end for years already...