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post #61 of 14359 Old 10-16-2003, 05:03 PM
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Jeff..
What's sad is that more people will play with the green screen thing at Tall Stacks than have ever seen any NBC show in HD. Of course, that'll change, but for now, it's a sobering thought.

Doc

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post #62 of 14359 Old 10-17-2003, 08:08 AM
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Small update..
Spoke to a tech at WLWT, this morning. Yes, the radar is up just for the cheap-and-easy link to Tall Stacks. There are no plans (that he knew of) to keep it after the event ends. He also seemed to think the bitrate was extremely low.

Anyone who hasn't seen the WCPO-DT building on Gilbert should have a look while it's nearing completion. Nice job matching the bricks of the new building to the old archway for the observatory. It's rumored that the new switcher will be a Grass Valley designed for 16X9 service. (I haven't confirmed this, but sort of suspected. Very little will be brought over from the current building. It's all new gear, folks).

Webhopper's intended clientele isn't turning out to be it's best clientele. According to a subscriber, local businesses are using it more than rural subscribers. Which is another way of saying it isn't going away from WKRC-DT anytime soon. On the other hand, it also means they'll do everything to make sure the ATSC transmitter remains on the air, full time.

That's all the scuttlebut I have for now.

Doc

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post #63 of 14359 Old 10-17-2003, 09:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Doc,

Wow! Looks like they've done some work since last time I saw it!
They have a section of website on the new building, including a Webcam trained on the new building:

http://www.wcpo.com/specials/2003/newbuilding/

------------------

On WKRC-DT, I wouldn't even be surprised if they have a generator for the DT transmitter in case of power outage/etc, as well as backup plan for just about anything.

Jeff
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post #64 of 14359 Old 10-18-2003, 06:55 PM
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I just picked up a new Pioneer 3510HD box from the Eastgate TWC today. Of course, there is no manual. I have a 4:3 aspect ratio and heard from a salesman at Alamo that this box allows you to adjust the signal for the aspect ration on your TV, unlike my current SA3100HD. So, does anyone know how to get into the setup menu?

--Tim
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post #65 of 14359 Old 10-19-2003, 09:00 PM
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What is it with people not getting a manual with their Pioneer 3510 ? I picked mine up a couple of weeks ago at the Tri-County store and it came with a manual. I posted it up on the web, because apparently no one seems to have this manual. You can find the manual here. The aspect ratio control can be accessed by pressing the settings button on the remote and then pressing the yellow button a to get to the advanced settigs. There you'll find the aspect ratio control and output format options.

-MarcW
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post #66 of 14359 Old 10-20-2003, 09:23 AM
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Thanks MarcW for the help. I guess I should have been able to figure that out myself (push the Settings button, duh). Anyway, my TV accepts either 480p or 1018i through the component inputs. When switching the 3510HD to 480p mode, the aspect ratios work fine (letterboxed widescreen), albeit in SD resolution. However, when switching to 1080i output, it appears to completely ignore the aspect ratio settings, always outputting in widescreen "squeeshed" mode. So, once again I appear to be limited by the equipment and my choice of TV (4:3). I'm not sure if the aspect ratio setting works in 720p or not. Maybe someone can test that and report back.

--Tim
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post #67 of 14359 Old 10-20-2003, 11:33 AM
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Does anyone know what's up with WCPOs digital site? It's been down for quite a while.

I pass the building all the time, I work about 3 minutes away from it.

Troy

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post #68 of 14359 Old 10-20-2003, 01:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Troy ... Interesting -- Looks like their main index page was overwritten with the SOAS page, somehow -- Granted, I enjoy watching Popo+the Guys on Sunday night ...but ...

Anyhow the site is still there, For instance this is OK:

http://www.wcpo-dt.com/programming.html

I just sent Greg Ruschmann a note about it, hopefully he can get it fixed soon.

---------------------------

Oh, noticed WXIX-DT Audio is missing so far today. I guess it would drive the techs a little crazy to monitor audio from the analog and DT ....

Jeff
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post #69 of 14359 Old 10-20-2003, 02:06 PM
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Jeff...
Let me jinx it all by noting that the audio appears to be back at 5:05pm. .

Doc

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post #70 of 14359 Old 10-20-2003, 05:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Yep, it was probably fixed just before I posted that ... Was going to edit my post, but surmised that perhaps we worked a Anti-jinx this time :-)

Oh, Heard back from Ruschmann, he said he'd get right on the webpage problem -- And he evidently did! It's fixed now:

http://www.wcpo-dt.com/

Jeff
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post #71 of 14359 Old 10-21-2003, 01:19 PM
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CBS (12-1) is horrible for artifacts. Mondays Primetime was one of the worst nights of HD via local antenna. We need to push the issue at WKRC and if that doesn't work call CBS.
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post #72 of 14359 Old 10-21-2003, 02:58 PM
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Since CBS doesn't own WKRC, your best course of action will be with WKRC. But, with Webhopper making $$$, I wouldn't look for them to do much until enough people (particularly sponsors) have HDTVs to make the profit pendulum swing the other way. When there's a PQ battle with the other stations, THEN you can look for something to happen. Not enough of us for that to matter, just yet. Sad, but true. Heck, it's not even important enough for them to run the local spots, yet. So we're a long way from having an impact.

Did you know there's only ONE HDTV at Channel 12? It's in the lobby. That's right... there's not even one in the control room.

Doc

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post #73 of 14359 Old 10-21-2003, 09:17 PM
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I'm new to the whole HDTV thing. I have a Hughes HD receiver and an outside antenna for locals. I'm getting pretty good on all channels except for WKRC. The picture keeps breaking up about every minute. Is this my antenna or is the station that bad? I get WCPO just fine and from my location they are both a 18 degrees.
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post #74 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 12:24 AM
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You don't say where in KY you are nor what kind of antenna you're using, but you may need to bump your antenna to the east a little. WKRC is UHF, while WCPO is VHF (they're about a block apart). You'd most likely still get WCPO-DT with a combo antenna considerably mispointed. WKRC-DT, however, is going to be more picky, especially the farther out you are or the lower in elevation. Could be that you need a rotator, relocation of the antenna, or just a little eastward bump. It all depends on exactly where you are, what's in the way, etc.

Doc

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post #75 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 07:21 AM
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I live in the Cincinnati and I recently picked up a Pioneer 3510 HD cable box from TWC and bought a DVI cable. I have a Sony XBR television with an input specifically for the DVI high def viewing. I hooked it all up, switched to a hi def channel, and I get nothing but a black screen when my TV input is switched to the DVI one. I have no problems getting a picture when I source the component video or S-video from the box. I contacted TWC and the person I talked to was no help whatsoever so hopefully someone can give me hand. I guess my first question is whether or not TWC Cincinnati even supports the DVI output on their cable box. I have skimmed through a few forums and have gathered that perhaps TWC has not enabled this feature on their boxes... is this true? Also if they do support the DVI output does TWC have to do something with box to make it work or is there a setting that I have to change on cable box. I thought I read somewhere that the user could change the output on the cable box (ie 420p, 720p, 1080i) and if so how?


Any help would be greatly appreciated!!!
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post #76 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 08:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by DrDon
You don't say where in KY you are nor what kind of antenna you're using, but you may need to bump your antenna to the east a little. WKRC is UHF, while WCPO is VHF (they're about a block apart). You'd most likely still get WCPO-DT with a combo antenna considerably mispointed. WKRC-DT, however, is going to be more picky, especially the farther out you are or the lower in elevation. Could be that you need a rotator, relocation of the antenna, or just a little eastward bump. It all depends on exactly where you are, what's in the way, etc.

Doc

Well I'm in Independence. I have a Channel Master 3016. I guess what's weird is that I've had this up for about 2 weeks and at first I didn't have this problem. I was getting everything just fine except WB. Still can't get that one.
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post #77 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 11:16 AM
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Well, unless you're down in a valley, due north ought to work for you. I'm assuming you have < 50' of RG6 cable from the antenna to the set and/or a preamplifier. Probably would need that at your distance. Or a little more elevation.

Doc

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post #78 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 11:26 AM
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The really wierd thing is when I check the signal strength It flucuates between 90 and 50 back and forth. Does that seem like a aiming problem or do I need some kind of amplifier?
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post #79 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 11:40 AM - Thread Starter
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str1der,

I'd guess maybe the leaves falling off trees(or wind blowing trees around) has changed the signal conditions a little at your location, and you might need to adjust your antenna a little to compensate. I did notice that late night Monday(after Letterman) WKRC-DT went off air for a few minutes, then was in blank screen mode for a couple of minutes, but all has been normal here since then. Anyhow, some more thoughts follow, below :

Quote:
Originally posted by str1der
Well I'm in Independence. I have a Channel Master 3016. I guess what's weird is that I've had this up for about 2 weeks and at first I didn't have this problem. I was getting everything just fine except WB. Still can't get that one.

Some thoughts to add to Doc's excellent posts :

WB Cincy (WSTR-DT) Is operating at fairly low power, presently. Independance is about 18-19 Miles distant from their tower - The farthest Cincy tower for you. Given their directional antenna pattern as shown on FCC site, they would only be sending a little more than 6KW ERP or so in your direction. This would probably make it the most difficult Cincy station to receive from your location, with WCET-DT being the next probable most difficult station to receive, as their directional antenna is sending about 17KW ERP in your direction, but also from a tower about 5 miles closer to you than is the case with WSTR-DT. I'd still think however that WSTR-DT reception would still be possible for you given a decent outdoor antenna setup(maybe w/preamp) and no "significant enough" terrain/etc. issues. Of course, they don't have WB HD yet and don't have the best looking video, so it might not be worth the effort if you're getting good reception from the analog on 64(which I'd think should be the case) at least currently.

WKRC-DT is running 800KW ERP with a non-directional antenna up nice and high and they are the highest power station in our area. All things being equal, it should be, and generally is the easiest Cincy station to receive from within their 55~65 Mile coverage area.

I really wouldn't think you should need a rotor for Cincy area stations, as all should be within about 10 degree or so bearing from your location, with WCVN in N KY making for a 20 degree total difference. Seems to me like the CM3016 is a good choice of antenna for reception of the Cincy stations from your location, and along the lines of what Doc mentioned, what might be most helpful for you is to try to find a "sweet spot" for your antenna, moving antenna up or down, or right or left/etc. a little bit might do wonders.

You said you weren't experiencing the problem with WKRC-DT until recently ... I suppose it's possible that with the leaves coming off trees(and wind blowing trees around/etc) the signal conditions at your location may have changed a bit in various and unpredicatable ways. For example, with some of the leaves off trees, you might be gettting more signal(maybe too much) from WKRC-DT than was the case previously, and/or, more signal via Multipath which was somewhat blocked by the leaves. For this reason, it might take some adjustment in antenna heading(or antenna location) throughout the seasons to find the best spot. Still, if you don't have much of a terrain issue, changes such as leaves falling off trees usually aren't going to cause much of an issue, especially given a properly orientated outdoor antenna.

I'd think the best thing to try would be to try to improve reception on the antenna "sweet spot for reception" side of things, but Some other factors you might want to consider, Which may also be related to a potential change in signal conditions at your location due to leaves falling off trees :

#1) Judging by many reports I've seen, the E86 seems to have some RF performance problems-- for example, It might be the case that the strong signal from WKRC-DT may be overloading your tuner a bit, so it might be helpful for you to try a bit of extra attenuation -- You could add a "extra" 2 way splitter to get about 2.5-3.5db of attenuation, or even better try a variable atteunuator. -- If this helps, hard to say, but it's probably not a good idea to use a preamp, as you're probably getting more than enough signal(at least from WKRC-DT) as it is.

#2) Although I haven't heard of any problems from this, I believe that it is the case that intermod products(originating from the transmission side of things) from WCPO/WCPO-DT adjacent channel, and Colocated facilities could be a bit of a interference issue to channels 31~33 or so, although I've not seen any problem with it here.

It is a bit puzzling that we seem to have gotten a few other reports concerning difficulty of reception of WKRC-DT from certian areas of N KY, hard to say, but I have to wonder if some sort of "interference related issue", such as #2 above has anything to do with it. Especially given the proximity, and azimuth bearing of WCPO/WKRC tower from those receiving locations.

Jeff
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post #80 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 11:46 AM
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Str1der..
Could be a number of things. Loose connections, the trees blowing to and fro (if you're not up over them) and that's just a start. It seems the signal meters in these things measure error correction, not actual signal. Good thing, I guess, otherwise explaining a full-strength signal and no picture could be maddening for STB salespeople .

Let's just assume that's a weak actual signal condition and work from there. How long is your cable run? What kind of cable are you using? How high up are you? Any hills or buildings obstructing your view?

The best way to test the need for a pre-amp is to haul the STB and a small TV up to where you're only a few feet from the antenna. If all of the stations come in nice there, then a pre-amp is in order. Especially if you're using less than new RG-6 and/or splitting or diplexing the signal. At your distance, I'd almost bet on the need for the pre-amp. If you experience the same symptoms at the antenna you do in the house, then it's pointing, reflections, etc.

Another simple diagnostic is to hook your antenna to a standard TV inside the house and check the picture on WCET, WSTR and WBQC. Crystal clear? I'd bet WCET looks fine, but WSTR and WBQC don't.

That's enough for now. Let's start there and see where we go.

Doc

Sorry for any duplications as Jeff and I hit the post at about the same time!! And thanks, as usual, Jeff!!

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post #81 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 12:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Doc,

Thanks .... I really didn't address the preamp thing too well though, as I'd also think it's probably likely "medium gain"/lo noise mast mount preamp would probably help him out, overall -- Wouldn't really think he should have preamp overload problems either.

Jeff
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post #82 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 12:31 PM
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Thanks for the excellent replies. I will definitley try reaiming first. I don't have any trees in the direction of the antenna but I am in a little dip. Is there a particular preamp that you would recommend?
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post #83 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 12:56 PM
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The CM 7777 (Channel Master) seems to be a forum favorite. Do run the at-the-antenna test before you sink the money, however. If you're not getting signals at the antenna, there's little a pre-amp can do.

Doc

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post #84 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 01:05 PM
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Could you explain a little about your comment regarding the signal strength meter? I guess what I don't understand is it jumping up and down on this station but it's always locked and doesn't go below 50. Almost all others are at 100 rock solid.
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post #85 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 01:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Yes, and that dip might be a bit of a problem for you, and it might mean that moving your antenna a bit up, or right or left(even 6") could make a big difference.

As Doc mentioned, the CM7777 comes highly recommended on this forum, but it might be a little too "high gain" for you. Also Personally, If I'm hooking up a 300ohm antenna, I like to use a preamp with 300 ohm input and a short piece of good, 300ohm twinlead to antenna, as the circutry in the preamp used to match 300ohm balanced feed to 75 ohm unbalanced Coax I'd think is as good or better insertion loss wise than you'd get from any balun(matching transformer), which you need if you're using no preamp, or a preamp with 75 ohm input. I use a Blonder tongue Suburban II here(The new model is Suburban III), it works very well.

Several that may be good in your situation might be Winegaurd AP-8703(8700 is 75 ohm input version), or Blonder Tongue Suburban III. I can't find the #, but I think CM makes a decent "medium gain" preamp that you might be able to get at home depot. There are also some preamps which amplify UHF, and just pass through VHF, such as the CM7775, and winegaurd AP-4700 which might not be a bad Idea for you if your VHF reception is just fine.

more info on various preamps here:

http://www.starkelectronic.com/allamps.htm

Jeff
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post #86 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 02:12 PM - Thread Starter
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str1der,

Hope Doc doesn't mind If I butt in here ... In a explanation of ATSC receiver design in the following document:

http://www.atscforum.org/doc/FieldTestReport.pdf

There is a mention of how "signal quality meters" can be implemented in receivers. This is an excerpt of what it says in 1st paragraph of page 3, and, from what I've seen, I highly suspect this is exactly how the "signal meters" on most models of DTV receivers are implemented - I've put the part we are interested here in all caps :

"The MPEG data sync is reinserted at the receiver output for subsequent processing in the receiver's MPEG transport decoder. The one-segment long binary frame sync not only provides pseudo-random number sequences(PN) for data frame synchronization, but can also be used as a training signal for the receiver's equalizer AND AS A MEANS TO MEASURE RECEIVED SIGNAL QUALITY."

In other words, even though it might say so right on the screen or in manual, it's not really a "signal strenth" meter. It doesn't measure signal strength. Except for rare exception such as the SNR and AGC readings on a Hauppage WINTV-D tuner card, which does measure signal over noise, right from the actual RF signal itself, it is a "Signal Quality" meter, and does not even look at the actual RF signal itself, instead, it looks at at the datastream, and at things such as bit rate errors that are occuring in the datastream, and basically, how "clean" the datastream looks to the decoder.

For this reason, a fairly weak signal, just a bit over the threshold of signal over noise needed for good DTV reception(Which is theoretically 15.3db of signal over noise) can produce a "100" reading, just as a much stronger signal might -- Although, that weaker signal is still actually more susceptable to dropouts(and fluctuating meter readings) from interference and Multipath issues than would be the case if an actual, strong signal was involved.

This is not to say, that you don't have a "strong signal" from WKRC-DT, you might. Unless your dealing with a quite weak signal that actually is just a bit under or over the threshold of signal over noise needed for good DTV reception, that meter is probably going to tell you pretty much nothing about signal strength. But it can tell you about "signal quality", and what is "good enough". It's also the case that an actual strong signal, with perfect reception still might not give you a "100 reading".

For the most part, getting good DTV reception is all about getting enough Signal over noise,(and that noise could be anything, normal "noise", noise from various interference issues/receiver desense/selectivity issues/etc), and in some occasions is about correcting for multipath. Normally, the more signal available, the easier it is for the equalizer in your receiver to correct for multipath problems, but there can be exceptions.

Of course too, there are situations when there is TOO much signal, more than the receiver can handle, which can also cause the meter to fluctuate and dropouts to occur. It might not even be the signal you are trying to receive that could cause the front end of your tuner to overload, it might even be a strong, nearby signal on a different frequency alltoghether -- This can cause your tuner to desensitize.

Receiver selectivity issues can also be an issue, for example, when a strong signal is on a channel right next to a weak signal you're trying to receive(which shouldn't be a problem for WKRC-DT), your receiver may not be selective enough to see the weak signal. I had also heard somewhere that a station 7 channels away can cause diffiuclties with this, although I've never seen it.

Generally speaking, it is probably most common that if the desired signal is fairly weak, then Multipath issues or almost any sort of interference issue or a little bit of "increased noise" can cause the meter to fluctuate, and dropouts to occur as you seem to be experiencing. Of course, however, given your results from the other stations, I wouldn't at all be surprised if a combination of issues which we've been discussing may be involved.

Clear as mud? I hope it makes some sense -- I do know that I wish our receiver's had better RF signal diagnostic tools to show us really what is going on, something that is going to even be more of a necessity when the analogs shut off.

Jeff
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post #87 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 03:08 PM
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Of course I don't mind. Always pick up so much more info (and handy links) when you do .

Doc

Walking the fine line between jaw-dropping and a plain ol' yawn.
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post #88 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 05:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by str1der
The really wierd thing is when I check the signal strength It flucuates between 90 and 50 back and forth. Does that seem like a aiming problem or do I need some kind of amplifier?

This happens on my Dish Model 6000. When switching to WKRC-DT the signal strength goes back and forth between 33 and 85 for a few seconds, then it retunes to a solid 80-85 for as long as I keep it tuned.

It's almost as if the signal is "out-of-sync", the receiver eventually realizes it and resets itself. The receiver always locks on so I never bothered re-aiming since it would affect the reception of other stations.

jim
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post #89 of 14359 Old 10-22-2003, 09:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok, I'm sitting here watching World Series in Fox Widescreen -- and at 12:12am, during ad break before the top of 12th, the signal disappears from WXIX-DT! Checked the analog, and it was down too!

Analog came back up by 12:16am, and Surprise! At 12:18am, I got to see the WXIX-DT transmitter tube warm back up, as the signal quality meter on the receiver rose from below a lock quickly(about 5 seconds) to it's normal "pegging the meter" reading ... back to Fox widescreen for the final bit of the game ... So, it appears someone is awake down there tonight :-)

Jeff
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post #90 of 14359 Old 10-24-2003, 01:17 PM
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Well I think it's just a matter of the aiming. I adjusted it a little and I now get WKRC fine. Only problem is now Fox is cutting in and out now. I guess I have a little more fine tuning to do . Thanks again guys. I do have another question though. What are the secondary channels for the OTA stations for?
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