Birmingham, AL - HDTV - Page 12 - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
Old 04-16-2004, 01:40 PM
Senior Member
 
SteveHorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Pelham AL
Posts: 336
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Jamie,

I put a chase in my home several years ago. I just found an interier wall (uninsulated), located it in the attic using its top plate as a guide (under the insulation), then located the same vertical point in the basement (somewhat tricky but can be done with careful measuring), drilled 2 holes large enough for a piece of PVC pipe. This obviously will only work if you have a single story, access to the attic, and access to the basement or crawl space.

I'm in Pelham and using an attic antenna, with fair results. I'm getting all the UHF (although Fox 6 is irratic). Have not had any luck with ABC (5) yet. In fact I just got down from the attic trying to aim the VHF ant. Where is the transmitter? The only thing I got was a momentary still shot when aiming almost due West. When is Anniston's xmitter on-line - according to titantv, that's where I'm supposed to be getting ABC from anyway.
SteveHorn is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 04-16-2004, 06:58 PM
Senior Member
 
bearmur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Munford, Al.
Posts: 434
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Channel 5 is NW of Pelham. You may have to put you vhf antenna outside to get 5. The FCC trumps local governments. You can have an outside antenna. Do you get 33 off the air? 5 & 33 are located on the same tower. We got the audio fixed on 33-2 today. The psip was wrong in more than one file. It took a lot to find it all. Thanks to Ron Thomas it is fixed. No FCC word on channel 9 yet.
bearmur is offline  
Old 04-16-2004, 10:58 PM
AVS Special Member
 
bhambrad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Chelsea, AL
Posts: 1,247
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20 Post(s)
Liked: 14
I am getting abc 33/40 (chan 33-1) in pelham with an attic install. The problem I am having is a 60% signal strength but lots of dropouts. I am using the CM 2001 VHF model. I have the antenna hanging straight down - it works best this way. I am going to move the antenna again when I have another hour to fool with it.
bhambrad is online now  
Old 04-17-2004, 06:12 AM
Senior Member
 
SteveHorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Pelham AL
Posts: 336
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Outside VHF is Plan B. I spent part of yest afternoon literally cutting my antenna in half, separating the U from the V for aiming reasons. Now that they're not 'conjoined at the back', I can play with the aiming of the VHF half. May also try a different/hotter preamp. I need to wrap all this up before it gets too hot to be in the attic for more than a few minutes! And I'm having flashbacks to when color TV was first available and the antenna story was 'location-location-location'.
SteveHorn is offline  
Old 04-17-2004, 02:27 PM
Member
 
danog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Alabaster, AL
Posts: 90
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Finally had enough time to get the antenna aimed correctly and combined with the internal silver sensor so now I have everything but Fox(low signal strength).
The one issue I have is that the SS is lower (35ft) and indoors so I have to play with direction more when changing to some stations. PBS seems to give me the most trouble but they all work well enough to enjoy them.

These preamps you guys keep suggesting, how do they make the signal stronger without making the noise worse?
danog is offline  
Old 04-17-2004, 04:02 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
tclove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Success. I finally found one (after eliminating four other antennas) antenna that worked at pulling in ABC. I bought a VHF only Channel Master 3614 from Forbes and, though it required a sweet spot and a very stange angle, and when paired with the CM 7777 preamp, I was able to get an 86% signal strength. I guess that I will now try to combine the two antennas. For those of you that want to try it, Forbes had several and it was around $30.

Tim Love
tclove is offline  
Old 04-17-2004, 04:35 PM
Senior Member
 
SteveHorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Pelham AL
Posts: 336
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Tim, do they carry the preamps too? I have one on-loan from Hooper's, but it may go back. I need to fiddle with the VHF ant. a bit more to see if I can pull in ABC 5.

Btw, can you update the station status at the beginning of this thread? Also, from bearmur, I read that ABC Anniston is going to be chan 9, right?... Someday.
SteveHorn is offline  
Old 04-17-2004, 05:11 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
tclove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Steve,

They do sell pre-amps, but they don't have the CM 7777 in stock. I ordered mine from www.warrenelectronics. com. They had lots of them and were extremely friendly and helpful. I will work on updating the station status. Thanks for the reminder.

Tim Love
tclove is offline  
Old 04-17-2004, 08:28 PM
Member
 
Broadband LabRat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Pelham, Alabama
Posts: 73
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:


Originally posted by tclove
Will there be anyone in the control room on the weekends to flip the switch? If they forget, is there a number that we should call to remind them?

Thanks!

Tim

Sat night 4/17 at 9:15PM, on the Mummy Returns, they forgot to switch it back to HD after the commercial break for about 10 minutes ... I imagine it's easy to miss the manual switchover...
Broadband LabRat is offline  
Old 04-17-2004, 08:47 PM
Senior Member
 
bearmur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Munford, Al.
Posts: 434
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Station status - waiting on the FCC. We are working to find a way for the automation to make the switch.
bearmur is offline  
Old 04-17-2004, 09:10 PM
Member
 
Broadband LabRat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Pelham, Alabama
Posts: 73
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Steve,

I ordered a CM 7777 last Friday week from:
http://www.spectravox.com/7777.html
for just under $59.00 SHIPPED.

Ordered on Friday and received it the following Tuesday.

Dennis
Broadband LabRat is offline  
Old 04-17-2004, 09:24 PM
Member
 
Broadband LabRat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Pelham, Alabama
Posts: 73
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:


These preamps you guys keep suggesting, how do they make the signal stronger without making the noise worse? [/b]

When an antenna is connected to the first active detector in a receiving system via coax, the loss in the coax is added directly to the overall noise figure of the receiving system. By locating a preamp at the antenna, it places the first active detector before the coax loss, thereby removing that loss from the overall system noise figure. Additionally, quality preamps have low noise figures themselves, and therefore are virtually equivalent to locating a high quality, low noise receiver stage right at the antenna.

Cheers,
Broadband LabRat is offline  
Old 04-18-2004, 07:12 AM
Senior Member
 
SteveHorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Pelham AL
Posts: 336
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Dennis, thanks for the preamp info. I looked at that site and the preamp I currently have from Hooper's (Winegard AP8275) specs out a bit better than the CM. So I'll probably stay with what I've got. But the site link is a keeper for future reference. At least now I know that I can concentrate on antenna position and location.... and pay Hooper's.

Steve
SteveHorn is offline  
Old 04-18-2004, 08:44 AM
Member
 
Broadband LabRat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Pelham, Alabama
Posts: 73
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:


Originally posted by SteveHorn
Dennis, thanks for the preamp info. I looked at that site and the preamp I currently have from Hooper's (Winegard AP8275) specs out a bit better than the CM.

You are welcome, Steve...

I noticed the following when looking up the preamp specs:

Amp--------VHF Gain-----VHF Noise-----UHF Gain-----UHF Noise
CM 7777------23 dB--------2.8 dB-------26 dB--------2.0 dB
AP 8275------29 dB--------2.9 dB-------28 dB--------2.8 dB

In general, the gain provided by a preamp must only be enough to overcome transmission line losses and downstream splitter losses between it and the next active stage. The Winegard does provide considerably more gain at VHF, but unless you are overcoming huge downstream losses, it's probably not important. What may be more important is the UHF noise figure of the preamp. The 1st preamp's noise figure adds directly into the system noise figure, therefore while the VHF noise specs are virtually identical for the two amps, the CM has almost a dB less noise at UHF.

This is, of course, splitting hairs... Most TV receive systems don't run on 1 dB noise margins... I'm more acustomed to designing systems for satellite reception and for moon bounce reception... ;-)

Good luck!! (Picture quality on The Mummy Returns on ABC last night was great! The audio sync was still a tad off, but not enough to be a big bother.)

Dennis
Broadband LabRat is offline  
Old 04-18-2004, 03:09 PM
Member
 
danog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Alabaster, AL
Posts: 90
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Thanks for the information. I must have gotten really lucky or by buying the right equipment because I've not had any trouble getting a signal without a preamp or by adjusting the antenna.

Hooper's is a great source. The AntennaCraft antenna I got form them has performed excellent although it is only used now for the ABC (VHF) feed. The little SilverSensor handles the UHF. We're about 20-25 miles from the towers in Birmingham and 25-30 from Tuscaloosa. Even with the new growth on the trees we haven't lost signal.
danog is offline  
Old 04-18-2004, 03:20 PM
AVS Special Member
 
David Richardson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Birmingham, Alabama
Posts: 2,730
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Location, location, location !
David Richardson is offline  
Old 04-18-2004, 07:15 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
tclove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Bearmur,

I called the Newsroom and asked for someone in Engineering so I could ask them to flip the switch, but no one answered. Tonight was my first chance to see something in HD as "Alias" is on. Can you tell us what is the best way to contact someone to flip the switch? I know that you are trying to find a way to automate it, but in the meantime what should we do?

Thanks!!!

Tim Love
tclove is offline  
Old 04-18-2004, 07:50 PM
Member
 
Broadband LabRat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Pelham, Alabama
Posts: 73
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:


Originally posted by tclove
Can you tell us what is the best way to contact someone to flip the switch? I know that you are trying to find a way to automate it, but in the meantime what should we do?

My wife just asked me the same question... Alias is a favorite show of her's and she was looking forward to seeing it in HD tonight ...
Broadband LabRat is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 08:50 AM
Senior Member
 
auburn97's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Posts: 265
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Hey Broadband-
It's best just to call the station and asked to be transferred to the station engineer. That's what I did on Saturday when the CBS telecast of the PGA tournament was in SD. The station engineer was great, he told me he didn't realize it was in HD and told me to hold on for one second, and voila, a flip of a switch is all it took, total of 30 seconds. I hope the same can be said of the other broadcast affiliates in Birmingham.

By the way, what kind of Radio Shack antenna are you using for VHF? I'm in Tuscaloosa, so I bet it will work easily for me if it does for you in Pelham.
auburn97 is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 09:28 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
tclove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Auburn97,

I did call ABC 33/40 and asked to speak to the engineering department, but no one answered the phone. That's why I posted the question to Bearmur (see post above the one you replied to Broadand about). In general, stations ARE very good about flipping the switch if they forget to. Neither of the two programs that were supposed to be in HD last night were. It was my first chance to see ABC in hi def after spending about 8 hours on the roof trying to get the signal. Needless to say, I was bummed when the HD was not passed through.

Tim Love
tclove is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 09:42 AM
Senior Member
 
bearmur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Munford, Al.
Posts: 434
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Call news and ask for mcr on weekendsor at night.
bearmur is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
tclove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Thanks Bearmur. I did call the news department and asked to be transferred to somone in Engineering, but noone ever picked up. I will try asking for mcr in the future (I hope I don't have to)...smile.

I know that Brad had asked this, but I will as well. Do you have any plans for the gray bars on 4x3 content to be black? I prefer black (especially at night).

Thanks again for keeping us all in the loop.

Tim Love
tclove is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 12:07 PM
Member
 
danog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Alabaster, AL
Posts: 90
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
8 hours on the roof?

Man, I'm feeling guilty as it only took 5 minutes to grab the signal. I know you're much further out but what problems did you run into?

Dano
danog is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 12:12 PM
Member
 
danog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Alabaster, AL
Posts: 90
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
When will Titantv and antennaweb update their information to show ABC HD is now available in Birmingham? I've emailed their sites and hope to get the new information added soon.
danog is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 02:30 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
tclove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Danog,

I wish I knew why it was so hard. Dave Richardson has seen my house and was surprised I could get anything when HD first went live in Bham. I live in Inverness at the bottom of a huge hill with HUGE trees surrounding my house. I tried 5-6 different antennas and only the VHF only antenna in one specific spot was able to pull in the signal. Then I had to mount it and adjust it, etc. It was a LONG day!!! None of the other antennas in the same spot would work at all.

Tim Love
tclove is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 04:57 PM
Member
 
Broadband LabRat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Pelham, Alabama
Posts: 73
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:


Originally posted by auburn97
By the way, what kind of Radio Shack antenna are you using for VHF? I'm in Tuscaloosa, so I bet it will work easily for me if it does for you in Pelham.

Almost anything should work in Tuscaloosa for channel 5.

Mine is below:

http://dease.net/tv/tv_antennas.jpg
Broadband LabRat is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 05:51 PM
Senior Member
 
bearmur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Munford, Al.
Posts: 434
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Automation is working to make the switch. If the log is right then the hd should be there.
bearmur is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 05:54 PM
Senior Member
 
bearmur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Munford, Al.
Posts: 434
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 10
E-mail ABC3340.com about the gray bars.
bearmur is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 06:15 PM
Senior Member
 
SteveHorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Pelham AL
Posts: 336
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
BroadBand Labrat - its no wonder you pull in ABC in Pelham; I suspect your antenna is ABOVE most of Pelham! It also explains why my attic antenna doesn't cut it. I'm not done with it yet though! BTW, thanks for the clarifying info on the pre-amps, but I squared up with Hooper's today. Sounds like it won't matter - I just need to find the antenna sweet spot.
SteveHorn is offline  
Old 04-19-2004, 06:24 PM - Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
tclove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 334
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Bearmur,

I will e-mail the station. It appears that the 4x3 content (network commercials, etc) have black bars and look significantly better than the 4x3 content with gray bars (as happens for local spots and programming). Can you shed any light on the technicals of what is being broadcast? It looks like the 4x3 with gray bars is just 480i and the 4x3 with black bars is 720p. Am I mistaken?

Also, any idea when the PSIP guide information will be available?

Thanks again!

Tim Love
tclove is offline  
 
Thread Tools


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off