Rockford, IL - HDTV - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 1189 Old 12-14-2002, 10:15 AM - Thread Starter
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For those of you monitoring DTV status in Northern Illinois, WIFR-DT CBS in Rockford in now up for equipment testing. It may be on and off over the next couple of weeks but should generally be available. There is a little work to be done to switch to and from the CBS HD feed but that shouldn't take more than a week. Until then you will mostly get the standard programming upconverted to 1080i. Please rescan for channels if your receiver requires it. The actual channel is 41, but it should show up as 23-1 after a rescan since we are sending the TVCT PSIP info.

Thanks for watching and please post any reception reports to this forum.
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post #2 of 1189 Old 12-14-2002, 11:30 AM
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What percent power are you at currently and when are you shooting for a 100% power (pending FCC approval)?
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post #3 of 1189 Old 12-14-2002, 11:54 AM - Thread Starter
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WIFR is operating at 49.6kW which is the maximum allocated for it by the FCC. We are operating under a STA due to an antenna center of radiation which is slightly lower than our allocation (due to the antenna being side-mounted). This is probably the final configuation for WIFR-DT.

Thanks for your interest and again we solicit reception reports from all interested viewers to be posted to this forum.
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post #4 of 1189 Old 12-15-2002, 09:27 AM
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Swung the antenna around towards Rockford with the hope of getting away from the CBS Chicago fiasco. Sad to report not much luck with WIFR-DT, the signal is there but not enough to lock on to. Likewise nothing from WREX-DT either but can get a decent signal from WTVO-DT.

R. B.
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post #5 of 1189 Old 12-20-2002, 01:19 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by VP/Engineering

Thanks for your interest and again we solicit reception reports from all interested viewers to be posted to this forum.


I have noticed that the picture is really stretched to fill my screen (16:9)..is this just temporary until you are actually broadcasting hi-def? I guess the
question is how do you plan on broadcasting SD programming..4:3 or a stretched 16:9?
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post #6 of 1189 Old 12-21-2002, 12:06 PM
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Hello, I just purchased a Hitachi 57 Ultra Digital and would like to see all this TV can do. Will your signal be strong enough to reach Polo if I make the investment in a HD Receiver and antenna?

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post #7 of 1189 Old 12-21-2002, 01:47 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by StormCrow2002
Hello, I just purchased a Hitachi 57 Ultra Digital and would like to see all this TV can do. Will your signal be strong enough to reach Polo if I make the investment in a HD Receiver and antenna?

I couldn't see why not. I've never heard of Polo, IL, so opened up my MS Mappoint software. According to the map Polo, IL is roughly 34 miles straightline to Rockford. You should be within range. If you can pickup the analogs from Rockford with an antenna, it shouldn't be a problem getting the digitals. Only one way to tell, go buy yourself an OTA digital receiver.

Brad B.
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post #8 of 1189 Old 12-21-2002, 04:28 PM
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Thanks for your response Brad,

I guess I was somewhat hoping that I could know before I purchased so I didn't spend the money when I could not even receive the signal. Also, Do I need to purchase any certain kind of receiver? I was wondering, since I already have DirecTv if I purchased their HD Receiver would I also be able to plug in my HD OTA antenna into it and recieve the local channels that way and the DirecTv HD signal throught he HD dish?

Sorry for asking so many new questions!

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post #9 of 1189 Old 12-21-2002, 05:59 PM
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Here in Woodstock I get the following signal strengths:
WIFR - 67
WREX - 67
WTVO - 88

So, you're on par with WREX which isnt really a strong signal but at least I can receive CBS now!

It's amazing, I'm within range of Rockford, Madison, Milwaukee, and Chicago and not one has a CBS station on the air that I can receive.

Except now! Woohoo!
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post #10 of 1189 Old 12-21-2002, 11:37 PM
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dicko2, what is your antenna setup? Your reception (other than WBBM) sounds pretty good, I'm envious. From Milwaukee, digital 8 has signal strength of 6-12 and analog 10 is fuzzy but watchable here in Downers Grove, and that's all I can get -- nothing from Rockford or Madison or South Bend. (I had had some luck in September but it was from tropospheric ducting, and that phenomenon is definitely over for awhile here.)

Maybe I need a pre-amp. I've got a Radio Shack VU-190R on the roof about 30 feet off the ground. Kipp, what do you think? Can you get anything from Rockford, Milwaukee, or South Bend regularly?

During football season, in particular, it would be nice to have the ability to choose from different stations around the area, although the regular season is coming to a close.

Any thoughts or suggestions from any members would be appreciated. I'm in pretty good shape regarding Chicago broadcasts, but I still want more...
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post #11 of 1189 Old 12-22-2002, 09:06 AM
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Dan, do you always get a 6-12 on the WIS. station? If so then I would think some things can be done to nail it full time.

40° 42' 17" N 89° 36' 57" W
If a station is broadcasting and no-one can receive them, then are they broadcasting?
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post #12 of 1189 Old 12-22-2002, 12:04 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by StormCrow2002
Thanks for your response Brad,

I guess I was somewhat hoping that I could know before I purchased so I didn't spend the money when I could not even receive the signal. Also, Do I need to purchase any certain kind of receiver? I was wondering, since I already have DirecTv if I purchased their HD Receiver would I also be able to plug in my HD OTA antenna into it and recieve the local channels that way and the DirecTv HD signal throught he HD dish?

Sorry for asking so many new questions!

Yes, all HD DirecTV receivers that I'm aware of also have an input for cable and/or OTA. I have a Toshiba DST3000 that I use for DirecTV and OTA. I would say if you connect your antenna to your TV and you can tune the regular analog channels from Rockford you should be good to go with digital.

Brad B.
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post #13 of 1189 Old 12-22-2002, 12:49 PM
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Brad,

Thanks for your response. The local stations northeast of me now broadcast in HD and your saying I will be able top plug my HD OTA antenna into the HD DirecTv Receiver and receive both DirecTv and OTA HD signals on my new Hitachi 57SWX20B tv? Does your Toshiba receiver have a program guide and when your in the guide can you still see the last channel you were on in a smaller screen?

Look forward to hearing from you, I'm new at this High Def thing and want to do it right the first time and get the best features.

Truth Is Life !!

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post #14 of 1189 Old 12-22-2002, 01:29 PM
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Dan
I dont know what I have up on the roof. I bought it such a long time ago but its for deep deep fringe reception, combined with a channelmaster 7777 preamp. I also, it appears, live at a high point in Mchenry county.

I dont get all the DTV stations from all the cities, just a few from each and its maddening trying to get CBS. I get 3 ABC signals from Milwaukee, Rockford, and Chicago.. Why cant I get CBS?? (crying in my beer here)

Tried WIFR this morning and it was cutting in and out. So I'd say its just on the verge of being receivable here. Funny thing. I get good reception on the analog signals from all the cities. Digital doesnt seem to carry as far.

Part of the problem is the FCC decided to make all these DTV signals co-channel with Chicago,.. WBUW-DT Janesville is co-channel with WFLD. WHA-DT Madison is co-channel with WYCC. WISC-DT Madison is co-channel with WPWR. WKOW-DT Madison is co-channel with WCIU. WMSN-DT Madison is co-channel with WTTW. WBBM-DT Chicago is co-channel with WISC Madison. What were these FCC guys thinking when they made these frequency assignments??

I'm sure the front-to-back ratio of my antenna isnt good enough to reject many of the co-channel signals, though I get WHA-DT quite well even though it's co-channel with WYCC. Reception of WYCC is horrible though, and it didnt used to be. I chaulk this up to WHA-DT coming on line.

Dick
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post #15 of 1189 Old 12-22-2002, 02:18 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by StormCrow2002
Brad,

Thanks for your response. The local stations northeast of me now broadcast in HD and your saying I will be able top plug my HD OTA antenna into the HD DirecTv Receiver and receive both DirecTv and OTA HD signals on my new Hitachi 57SWX20B tv? Does your Toshiba receiver have a program guide and when your in the guide can you still see the last channel you were on in a smaller screen?

Look forward to hearing from you, I'm new at this High Def thing and want to do it right the first time and get the best features.

Yes, all the DirecTV receivers that I'm aware of have both Sat input and antenna input. In the guide, my Tosh has the APG (Advanced Program Guide). It shows the local stations via antenna (analog & Digital) and the Sat data. My guide has a transpearancy, so you can see the show behind the guide screen. I've have tried several receivers and settled on the Toshiba DST3000. This receiver has two sister receivers that have the exact some insides in a different case. I don't have model numbers handy, but one is made my Hughes, and the other is a Mitsubishi. So no matter which you choose, your getting the same insides. I tried the original Sony model I think it was an HD100, and it had a nasty loud fan and the guide was really slow. I returned that unit for a Panasonic (not sure of model), and this thing really bothered me. The guide was deathly slow! So I finally settled on the Toshiba, was has an extremely fast guide and so far has worked out great. There is a new lineup of HD receivers being released as we speak. I just got my Dad to buy the newest Samsung (I think SIR-160). This seems like a really nice box. I wish I could trade him for my Tosh. It has extremely fast response and has DVI outputs as well. There is a new Toshiba, Zenith, & Sony box being are already relased soon. I would probably choose one of these second generation HD receivers if I was going to buy one right now. They don't seem to be giving such a great price break on the first gen units like mine. The new ones seem to have faster processors and have more options as far as outputs go. Some are also supposed to have firewire outputs for future recording options. I'd say either way you look at it, your looking at around $600 for a receiver.

Brad B.
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post #16 of 1189 Old 12-22-2002, 02:33 PM
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Oh yeah, you need all three LNB's on your dish if you plan to receive all three HD channels on DTV.
HBOHD & HDNET are at 119 degrees
SHOHD is at 110 degrees
Normal broadcast is at 101 degrees

Brad B.
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post #17 of 1189 Old 12-22-2002, 02:55 PM
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Thanks for the info,

I was looking in the HD hardware forum and it seems that the new Samsung 165? is the latest from them. The local store I bought my TV from has the new Sony Receiver hooked up and they have a RCA brand one sitting there that they used to use. Would it be worth it to try and pick that one up cheap (store display, used)? I have a digital camcorder and wonder if I could just run the firewire straight into it to record if needed. The way to really go is one of those Hard drive recorders right?

I'm pretty sure I would want to make sure it has component out jacks right?

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post #18 of 1189 Old 12-22-2002, 04:45 PM
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The RCA receiver I think your speaking of is one of the first and oldest HD receivers. It's probably the cheapest model avail right now. I haven't used that one myself, so I can't provide any input.

I know zero about recording HD, although I don't think you can record using your camcorder.

The connector really depends on your TV. Most TV use component jack (three RCA type inputs). That's what my set uses. Some use a VGA type plug(15 pin I think). Some of the newer sets use DVI. You have to look at your TV to decide that.

You should check with that store if your not happy with the receiver (RCA) can you return it. If they don't have a problem with that, I'd go ahead and buy and take it home for a test drive.

Brad B.
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post #19 of 1189 Old 12-26-2002, 05:36 PM
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I'm trying to receive WIFR-DT here in Lake in the Hills (Huntley area) and I'm having partial success. I receive what appears to be a strong signal and I'm decoding audio just fine. The video, however, is all pixelated and seems to be positioned in the upper left corner of the screen. What I mean by that is if you can imagine the television picture as an American Flag, the blue area where the stars are is a constantly chaging green pixelated picture, the rest of the "flag" is a frozen picture from the previous station I was tuned into. I can receive all the Chicago stations (minus WBBM-DT) and the other 2 Rockford Stations. It is just the CBS station which seems to not be compatible for me. I can hear it, but can't see it, which I think is strange.

I'm using an old Panasonic TU-DST50 which I picked up about 1 year ago for $50 bucks at Circuit City. Could there be an incompatiblity with the modulation of WIFR-DT and my older Pansonic unit?
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post #20 of 1189 Old 12-26-2002, 06:19 PM
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If you can hear a digital station with no breakups and no problem,
but don't get a perfect picture, something is very seriously wrong
with some piece of equipment, may be yours, may be theirs. The green
pixellated picture is a very common symptom .Try rebooting from being unplugged. This applies to encoders too, not just decoders (well, for encoders it's probably OK just to turn off.)

Doug McDonald
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post #21 of 1189 Old 12-29-2002, 07:16 PM
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ksorny, what kind of antenna are you using? I'm in Lake In The Hills, but I can't get much of a signal. The strongest signal I get is in the teens...it shows as a locked signal on my Mits SR-HD5 receiver, but no audio or video. I'm currently using a simple powered RCA "rabbit-ears" type antenna. I bought the Zenith Silver Sensor HDTV set top antenna this weekend and tried it out, but still nothing. Both antennas get the Chicago digital channels with great signal strengths (except for Ch 2-1 of course) . I checked Yahoo maps, and the distance between my house and downtown Rockford and my house and downtown Chicago is virtually the same (within a couple miles). However, I'm sure the Chicago stations are transmitting from a much higher antenna.

Has anyone in this area been able to get the Rockford stations with a set top antenna? I'd love to be able to watch the AFC playoffs in HD, and I doubt that I'd be able to get Ch. 2-1 on my RCA "rabbit ears" even if they're transmitting from their new antenna (and I know the Silver Sensor won't work because it's UHF only).

Marc
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post #22 of 1189 Old 12-30-2002, 01:43 PM
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Marc,
I'm using a roof mounted RadioShack antenna. Something is still severely wrong with either my Panasonic TU-DST50 or with the signal from WIFR-DT. I can hear the audio just fine without any breakups, but the picture is all scrambled. The scrambling is not simply pixelation from lack of signal (as in the case of WBBM-DT that most of us experience), rather, it appears as though my receiver does not know where to place the picture on the screen. It's trying to cram the entire picture in the upper left corner of the screen. There is also a switch on the back of the Panasonic which selects the output mode (480P, 720P/1080I, and All ATSC). If I select 480P as the output mode, the picture fills up the left 2/3rds of the screen with the remaining 1/3rd scrambled video.

All other stations in Rockford and Chicago are received and decoded without this problem, so my guess here is that WIFR-DT is transmitting something that is not compatible with my older HDTV receiver. Strange.

I'm curious if anyone else out there is able to receive WIFR-DT and also using a Panasonic TU-DST50??
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post #23 of 1189 Old 12-30-2002, 09:13 PM
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Hey is anybody else having problems with WTVO's sound? At home I run all my sound thru my Lexicon processor and when I have channel 17 on I only get sound out of the rear speakers unless I turn it up full blast. At work we have this station playing thru the tv speakers and its ok but there must be something wacky in the signal that goofs up in a surround processor. Anyone?
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post #24 of 1189 Old 12-31-2002, 07:52 AM
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I get the same audio problems with WTVO - here is the response I got from them over a month ago.

Are you attempting to receive using surround sound? We are still waiting to
get our modifications for it. I have a receiver at home and have not
experienced it yet...Not that it may not be a problem, just that I haven't
experienced it yet. I guess, "Bear with us" doesn't count for much, but
please, bear with us.
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post #25 of 1189 Old 12-31-2002, 09:34 PM
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Thanks Kuma. I think they just plugged in the wrong audio inputs.
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post #26 of 1189 Old 01-09-2003, 01:21 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by VP/Engineering

Thanks for watching and please post any reception reports to this forum.

Hey VP/Engineering - will you be up and running HD by this weekend
for the AFC football games? - I have yet to see any HD yet all SD.
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post #27 of 1189 Old 01-11-2003, 08:22 PM
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Can I get some signal strength #'s form you folks out there for WREX? According to antennaweb.org WREX and WIFR are only 1 degree apart and the difference in signal strength for me is like 68 for WIFR and WREX is like 18. I have my antenna pointed between Rockford & Madison (which is NW). WTVO's tower is south of the others and its signal strength is like a 100. Any help would be appreciated.
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post #28 of 1189 Old 01-11-2003, 09:47 PM
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I get the same problem....

WTVO 100
WIFR 100 No HD content yet
WREX 51
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post #29 of 1189 Old 01-12-2003, 12:48 PM
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I have two receivers, an F38310 TV and a HiDef TV PC card.
Here are the strengths I get on both:
F38310 HiDef Card
WIFR 28 63
WREX 45 63
WTVO 82 88

I'm in Woodstock, just east of Rt 47. The antenna is pointed due west.
WIFR is undecodable on the F38310 but is the same signal quality as WREX on the HiDef Card. This just shows that two different receivers can have vastly different results from the same antenna.

dickm
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post #30 of 1189 Old 01-15-2003, 06:58 PM
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Watching tv on a Hitachi 65SWX20B using a Samsung SIR-T160 HD receiver in Rockford, I'm getting the following readings using a Terk TV50 antenna...

WIFR-DT in & out 50% max
WREX-DT 77%
WTVO-DT 100%

WISC-DT 36% Madison!

It may help others if in your posts you show what HD receivers you pair with your antenna. I for one will 'prolly get a Medium Directional w/ pre-amp to get Madison in better.

I'ld also like to hear from others in the *area* to see what signal strength you're getting with receiver & antenna.

Life moves pretty fast. You don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.
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