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post #11071 of 11586 Old 08-31-2014, 11:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Calaveras View Post
I never would have known anyone was having a problem with Escape and Grit. I checked Escape on KDTV and it's in 16:9 window box. No stretching issues. I can zoom it to full screen 16:9. Escape on KUVS is full screen 16:9. Again no issues. Grit on KTFK is 16:9 full screen. Again no issues. I can't receive KFSF here to check that one.

I guess it depends on how your TV handles the formatting.

Chuck
They sometimes show 2.35 films cropped for 16:9 TV. In those cases, the picture looks normal. Unfortunately, that's one out of every 4 or 5 films they show. At one point this morning, I saw the same thing and wondered if they had fixed it .. nope, just a coincidence.

Give them another look at another time.
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post #11072 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 12:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Calaveras View Post
Since I know where Larry is I used the Path Profiler to plot the exact path. It shows his elevation as 344'. I attached the profile below. I removed the direct red line and added the RF path in blue taking into account KCRA's antenna height of 1905'. The effective height of the hill the signal crosses is a bit over 2000'. The actual height of the peak when viewed in "Flat Earth" is about 1600'.

The path may look bad but the terrain is extremely exaggerated and it's just a 1 edge path. Many 1 edge paths are not that difficult as long as the refraction angle isn't too steep. I don't think you'd get KCRA if you were in the flats of Berkeley.

My terrain plot to Sutro is worse than what Larry has to Walnut Grove and I still get some stations despite a 2 edge path.

Chuck
Wow... that's a surprise! I checked various maps and the highest point I found was at about 1000 feet. I sure missed the 2000 foot points! I'm rather amazed then that I get several of the stations from Walnut Grove so well. KMAX RF 21 is solid in here 99% of the time with signals in the 23 to 25 dB range, KQCA RF 46 is also pretty reliable with signals in the 19 to 21 dB range (like where KCRA used to be before KGO put the translator on channel 35) and KVIE 9, KXTV 10 and KOVR 25 are all fairly reliable.

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post #11073 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 12:35 AM
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Originally Posted by TonyB1966 View Post
Very fascinating depictions provided, thank you.

Out of curiosity, do any of you tilt your antennas in response to these realities, and if so, what is the logic employed? I have found meaningful SNR improvements with an upward tilt, now at about 10 degrees. I'm not exactly sure what degree of inclination will be most beneficial, but I wonder if such an analysis would help better explain...

I'm wedging different sized objects into the bottom mast clamp in order angle it upwards. Rather crude, but it's doing the trick I suppose. Are any of you aware of a device either designed for this, or something that can be used to better incrementally make such adjustments?
Tony... I've tried playing around with antenna tilting since the antennas on Sutro tower are at about a 20 degree angle up from the level point here. It didn't seem to make any difference in signal strength, but it did improve the signal quality with the antenna pointed up more directly at the transmitting antennas. Like Chuck said, it most likely helped get rid of multipath on some of the stations.

The antenna I was playing around with is the Antennas Direct S-15 UHF antenna and it had a slot on the antenna mount allowing you to tilt the antenna up and lock it in place. I don't know if a mount like that is available at a TV supply store, but you might want to check it out at a place such as Solid Signal.

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post #11074 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 12:40 AM
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Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
They sometimes show 2.35 films cropped for 16:9 TV. In those cases, the picture looks normal. Unfortunately, that's one out of every 4 or 5 films they show. At one point this morning, I saw the same thing and wondered if they had fixed it .. nope, just a coincidence.

Give them another look at another time.
When I first checked after your first post it was not clearly wrong, but made me pause about saying anything.

Today it was clearly right when I made my post after Chuck's.

I think you need to look further up the chain of processing to find the guilt party.

Grit and Escape do not have the equipment and people to process films or do anything much at all.

Quote:
Jonathan Katz, President and CEO of Katz Broadcasting which owns and operates the two new networks.
Even he could do nothing, he just obtained the rights to show the movies (And make money).

The films you see problems with may have been converted back when 4:3 was all that there was.

SHF
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post #11075 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 12:50 AM
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Ben... 888CallFCC... thanks for the video. Sitting here in my chair I still got stomach flutters when he tilted the camera down. I've had several opportunities to go up the elevator at Sutro Tower, but have always turned them down. I knew that once I was up at the top and stepped out of the elevator, I'd be standing on the cross-hatched support as you see in the Walnut Grove Tower video. I knew it would blow my mind, so I stayed safely on terra ferma. I hate heights!

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post #11076 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Larry Kenney View Post
Ben... 888CallFCC... thanks for the video. Sitting here in my chair I still got stomach flutters when he tilted the camera down. I've had several opportunities to go up the elevator at Sutro Tower, but have always turned them down. I knew that once I was up at the top and stepped out of the elevator, I'd be standing on the cross-hatched support as you see in the Walnut Grove Tower video. I knew it would blow my mind, so I stayed safely on terra ferma. I hate heights!

Larry
Poor Larry! It's absolutely beautiful up there on a clear day....

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post #11077 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Larry Kenney View Post
Tony... I've tried playing around with antenna tilting since the antennas on Sutro tower are at about a 20 degree angle up from the level point here. It didn't seem to make any difference in signal strength, but it did improve the signal quality with the antenna pointed up more directly at the transmitting antennas. Like Chuck said, it most likely helped get rid of multipath on some of the stations.

The antenna I was playing around with is the Antennas Direct S-15 UHF antenna and it had a slot on the antenna mount allowing you to tilt the antenna up and lock it in place. I don't know if a mount like that is available at a TV supply store, but you might want to check it out at a place such as Solid Signal.

Larry
Thanks for making the time to reply Larry. I did not know that Sutro antennas are angled up about 20 degrees. That, along with earth curvature for those further away, does seem to support why it might be beneficial to tilt antennas upward. My TV's tuner, nor others I have, like in the DVR, show signal strength and quality. I get SNRs, and those have been generally improved with this upward experimentation. I'm a little over 62 miles away from Sutro, per TV Fool...

Does one of your TVs or tuner boxes show signal strength and quality, or are you using a dedicated a tool to get such readings?

And thanks for mentioning Antennas Direct S-15. I'll ring AD to see if they might have any type of tilting mechanism. If not, I'll fab something-up...

Last edited by TonyB1966; 09-01-2014 at 09:27 AM.
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post #11078 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 10:43 AM
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The Sutro antennas are not angled up. What Larry is saying, I think, is that the antennas, from his house are 20 degrees up. Meaning that he is located underneath Sutro and in it's shadow...
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post #11079 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 11:02 AM
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Originally Posted by bobby94928 View Post
The Sutro antennas are not angled up. What Larry is saying, I think, is that the antennas, from his house are 20 degrees up. Meaning that he is located underneath Sutro and in it's shadow...
Thank you. That makes more sense. A relative thing (Larry's receiving location versus Sutro's transmission location).
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post #11080 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by SFischer1 View Post
When I first checked after your first post it was not clearly wrong, but made me pause about saying anything.

Today it was clearly right when I made my post after Chuck's.

I think you need to look further up the chain of processing to find the guilt party.

Grit and Escape do not have the equipment and people to process films or do anything much at all.



Even he could do nothing, he just obtained the rights to show the movies (And make money).

The films you see problems with may have been converted back when 4:3 was all that there was.

SHF
Not exactly sure what you are saying, but if you are implying that the equipment is somehow faulty, you're barking up the wrong tree. If the equipment was faulty, there would be evidence of issues with other stations. Even if that wasn't the case, the proof is in the ads they show during the crushed movies, their aspect ratio is perfect. If it was the equipment, the ads would also be crushed.

Bottom line is that they are choosing to "fill the 16:9 screen" when showing 4:3 pictures.
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post #11081 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
They sometimes show 2.35 films cropped for 16:9 TV. In those cases, the picture looks normal. Unfortunately, that's one out of every 4 or 5 films they show. At one point this morning, I saw the same thing and wondered if they had fixed it .. nope, just a coincidence.

Give them another look at another time.
I did and you're right. Grit TV was improperly stretched this morning.

Chuck
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post #11082 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Larry Kenney View Post
Wow... that's a surprise! I checked various maps and the highest point I found was at about 1000 feet. I sure missed the 2000 foot points! I'm rather amazed then that I get several of the stations from Walnut Grove so well. KMAX RF 21 is solid in here 99% of the time with signals in the 23 to 25 dB range, KQCA RF 46 is also pretty reliable with signals in the 19 to 21 dB range (like where KCRA used to be before KGO put the translator on channel 35) and KVIE 9, KXTV 10 and KOVR 25 are all fairly reliable.

Larry
I drew a line from your house to KCRA in Google Earth and it runs right over a ridge in the Oakland hills off of Grizzly Peak Blvd that has a building with a couple of communication towers on it. The elevation was 1700'.

The 2000' is only the result of the hill plus the effect of the curvature of the Earth added together.

Chuck
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post #11083 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
Not exactly sure what you are saying, but if you are implying that the equipment is somehow faulty, you're barking up the wrong tree. If the equipment was faulty, there would be evidence of issues with other stations. Even if that wasn't the case, the proof is in the ads they show during the crushed movies, their aspect ratio is perfect. If it was the equipment, the ads would also be crushed.

Bottom line is that they are choosing to "fill the 16:9 screen" when showing 4:3 pictures.
Correction KATZ Broadcasting does have someone doing film to video to digital.

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Program Editor at KATZ BROADCASTING
http://www.linkedin.com/in/sg3media

SHF
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post #11084 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 01:47 PM
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Seth Garcia

Program Editor at KATZ BROADCASTING

http://www.linkedin.com/in/sg3media
Someone to blame! Thanks!
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post #11085 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Calaveras View Post
I did and you're right. Grit TV was improperly stretched this morning.

Chuck
Good! The Fish Man was starting to make me feel like I was the only one with this issue. Please note the Linkedin address in his response to me below. Seems he may be the person to contact to get to the bottom of this.
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post #11086 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by TonyB1966 View Post
I'm a little over 62 miles away from Sutro, per TV Fool...

Does one of your TVs or tuner boxes show signal strength and quality, or are you using a dedicated a tool to get such readings?

And thanks for mentioning Antennas Direct S-15. I'll ring AD to see if they might have any type of tilting mechanism. If not, I'll fab something-up...
If you're receiving solid reception from Sutro at 62 miles out, your antenna set up is working great. Congratulations! What are you using?

I use my Sony TV for reading signal strength and quality. It shows both the SNR reading in dB and the quality on a 0 to 100% scale. My HomeRun HD receiver also shows strength and quality, but they're both shown in a percentage scale, so you don't know the actual strength.

Larry
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Last edited by Larry Kenney; 09-01-2014 at 04:35 PM.
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post #11087 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 04:28 PM
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Originally Posted by bobby94928 View Post
The Sutro antennas are not angled up. What Larry is saying, I think, is that the antennas, from his house are 20 degrees up. Meaning that he is located underneath Sutro and in it's shadow...
Correct!

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post #11088 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by bobby94928 View Post
Poor Larry! It's absolutely beautiful up there on a clear day....
I've seen pictures, including the ones showing you up on the tower, plus I see the shots from Sutro Cam on ABC7. I'd just be too nervous to enjoy it. My stomach would be doing flips. LOL

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post #11089 of 11586 Old 09-01-2014, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Larry Kenney View Post
If you're receiving solid reception from Sutro at 62 miles out, your antenna set up is working great. Congratulations! What are you using?

I use my Sony TV for reading signal strength and quality. It shows both the SNR reading in dB and the quality on a 0 to 100% scale. My HomeRun HD receiver also shows strength and quality, but they're both shown in a percentage scale, so you don't know the actual strength.

Larry
Hi Larry. Honestly, when I first began this quest in the Spring, I wasn't all that hopeful of getting many channels here. The TV Fool report:

http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...d24344cdac3547

Between the distance and path (2 Edge), there really wasn't much reason for hope...

I borrowed my pop's Antennas Direct ClearStream 4, and had wonderful results right off the bat. It inspired me. I since purchased AD's DB4e, and it has proven to be slightly better for us. On the TiVo Roamio scan, and a couple Samsung TVs, 66 "channels" are being secured. Fox 2.1 and CBX 5.1 are probably the toughest two for us, but given recent changes (DB4e, amplification, shortening the coax runs and tilting), they are more reliable for us. I hope I can say the same when we experience inclimate weather...

BTW, the TiVo Roamio tuner is very good for us. I'd say better than the Samsung ones we have, and apparently they are considered some of the better TV tuners...
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post #11090 of 11586 Old 09-02-2014, 01:16 AM
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Between the distance and path (2 Edge), there really wasn't much reason for hope...

I borrowed my pop's Antennas Direct ClearStream 4, and had wonderful results right off the bat. It inspired me. I since purchased AD's DB4e, and it has proven to be slightly better for us. On the TiVo Roamio scan, and a couple Samsung TVs, 66 "channels" are being secured. Fox 2.1 and CBX 5.1 are probably the toughest two for us, but given recent changes (DB4e, amplification, shortening the coax runs and tilting), they are more reliable for us. I hope I can say the same when we experience inclimate weather...

BTW, the TiVo Roamio tuner is very good for us. I'd say better than the Samsung ones we have, and apparently they are considered some of the better TV tuners...
Thanks for sharing your TVFool list. I see that you have no stations up in the green area, a few in the yellow and a lot in the red area, so you really do have fairly weak signals down there. I was not surprised to see channel 8 near the top, but was very surprised to see channel 3 listed up there. That's a low power station transmitting from Mt. Tamalpais up in Marin Country. Apparently low VHF signals are able to travel farther than high VHF or UHF. By the way, channels 2 and 4 that they list are not on the air yet.

How far down the list do you receive? Sutro stations 33 (V32), 43 (V60), 34 (V66) and 45 (V45) are all down in the gray area. Do you receive any of them?

Some times signals get better in the winter months. Leaves fall off the trees and for some that helps increase signal strength. You'll have to see what happens later on.

I've heard other good reports on the Tivo Roamio receiver. It could be part of the reason you're getting the large number of stations that you are plus that DB4e is doing a good job for you.

Larry

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post #11091 of 11586 Old 09-02-2014, 01:54 AM
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Thanks for sharing your TVFool list. I see that you have no stations up in the green area, a few in the yellow and a lot in the red area, so you really do have fairly weak signals down there. I was not surprised to see channel 8 near the top, but was very surprised to see channel 3 listed up there. That's a low power station transmitting from Mt. Tamalpais up in Marin Country. Apparently low VHF signals are able to travel farther than high VHF or UHF. By the way, channels 2 and 4 that they list are not on the air yet.

How far down the list do you receive? Sutro stations 33 (V32), 43 (V60), 34 (V66) and 45 (V45) are all down in the gray area. Do you receive any of them?

Some times signals get better in the winter months. Leaves fall off the trees and for some that helps increase signal strength. You'll have to see what happens later on.

I've heard other good reports on the Tivo Roamio receiver. It could be part of the reason you're getting the large number of stations that you are plus that DB4e is doing a good job for you.

Larry
Pointing at 320 degrees (true), the furthest down the list that I have received is virtual channel 68. Truth be told, I got that one with my pop's C4 antenna and TV's tuner. Above that, CW (44.1) and 66.1... Oh, also V32 and V60. Had to look at my Excel log to remember.

Maybe TV Fool is wrong on channel 3? Oh, that's right, VHF... The DB4e is UHF, so that's why I've never seen channel 3. I'm currently not using a VHF antenna as I've been able to get channel 8 at 168 degrees with the DB4e pointing at 320!. Not consistently though, so I ordered the VHF retrofit kit, and it should be here later this week... Channel 8 is the only VHF channel I desire, due to NBC and the ABC as well (8.2).

Thanks for the info on channels 2 and 4!

I hope the winter treats us well reception-wise. Agreed on no leaves being helpful. My most critical viewing (college football and hoops) is in the Fall and Winter, and into the Spring. We shall see soon enough. Hope we get some rain...

Really, really happy with the Roamio. I scored the base model on Amazon for like $85 delivered, due to various check-out perks (Discover Cashback and a $70 Visa discount to get their Amazon Rewards credit card). I feared that its 4 tuners would not be up to the task, but it's doing remarkably well. I returned the CM DVR+ because the tuner was inferior to the TV's tuner, at least for us, that was our experience...

Thanks again for the info.
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post #11092 of 11586 Old 09-02-2014, 08:39 AM
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I have a TiVo Roamio. I performed a careful comparison to my Sony TV whose tuner is almost exactly the same as the one in my portable myGOtv. The TiVo tuners were about 0.5 dB less sensitive than the Sony (that means 0.5 dB higher Noise Figure) but about 0.5 dB more tolerant of the multipath I have. You would not notice these differences without careful tests.

The TiVo must have a distribution amp built in to drive 4 tuners which is an example of how a distribution amp can be added to your system without introducing loss.

Chuck
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post #11093 of 11586 Old 09-02-2014, 08:42 AM
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Looks like Keith installed the new mux as there is now -5 and -6 sub channels on KFTY-LD. -3 and -5 are both DayStar.

Chuck
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post #11094 of 11586 Old 09-02-2014, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Calaveras View Post
I have a TiVo Roamio. I performed a careful comparison to my Sony TV whose tuner is almost exactly the same as the one in my portable myGOtv. The TiVo tuners were about 0.5 dB less sensitive than the Sony (that means 0.5 dB higher Noise Figure) but about 0.5 dB more tolerant of the multipath I have. You would not notice these differences without careful tests.

The TiVo must have a distribution amp built in to drive 4 tuners which is an example of how a distribution amp can be added to your system without introducing loss.

Chuck
Good information Chuck. I must admit that I spent the past few minutes reading about myGOtv. Pretty neat device.

From my readings on the Roamio, there is indeed internal amplification to overcome loss. This is true of the Tablo DVRs (2 and 4 tuner models). I found the Tablo tuner to be pretty good also. No dedicated testing equipment, just back-to-back observations and logging SNR's on an Excel spreadsheet. I'm returning the Tablo today, unfortunately. I found that network performance to be another factor to compromise reception...

Speaking of distribution amps, I picked-up the CM 3412 at Fry's over the weekend. Probably as most know, they match Amazon now. Got it for 27 bucks. It has the same power inserter as the CM-7777 preamp. I measured 22 VDC on each...

A slight change of topic... My elevation here is about 700'. At what height above sea level are the Sutro transmitters?
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post #11095 of 11586 Old 09-02-2014, 10:29 AM
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Looks like Keith installed the new mux as there is now -5 and -6 sub channels on KFTY-LD. -3 and -5 are both DayStar.

Chuck
Hi Chuck,

Yes, I'm figuring out the new Anywave mux I got and how its statistical multiplexing works. I have 12 inputs: four inputs on the Comark mux that I feed its ASI input into the Anywave mux, and then I have 8 inputs on the Anywave mux. I know that I can do eight sub-channels, but then I wonder how well 9 or 10 channels would look. I'll be turning on more subchannels. I was going to move Daystar to a higher channel but then I found that some TVs don't automatically add additional channels that I add to the transport stream. I want to make a good impression on Daystar, so I think I may leave it on channel 3 for a while, too.

Blessings,
Keith
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A slight change of topic... My elevation here is about 700'. At what height above sea level are the Sutro transmitters?

You can look up station information at the FCC here:

http://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/tv-q...station-search

All the information is consolidated here:

http://www.rabbitears.info

Chuck
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post #11097 of 11586 Old 09-02-2014, 07:39 PM
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My elevation here is about 700'. At what height above sea level are the Sutro transmitters?
Ah, there's another reason why you get decent reception at your house, Tony... you're up at 700 feet!

The elevation at the base of Sutro Tower is 834 feet above sea level. The tower itself is 977 feet tall, so the tallest point on the tower is 1,811 feet.

If you look at my list of DTV stations (link below) the Height Above Average Terrain (HAAT), which is what the FCC uses for height measurements, is shown for each station.

For a look at the changeover from the analog to the digital antennas at Sutro, check out my Sutro Tower page where you'll find a series of pictures showing them removing the old antennas and installing the new ones back in 2009. Many of the pictures were taken from my living room window. There are also lots of close up pictures of the antennas taken up at Twin Peaks.

http://www.larrykenney.com/sutrotwr.html

The official Sutro Tower website is: http://sutrotower.com/

Larry

My complete SF Bay Area DTV Station Lists: http://www.choisser.com/sfonair.html
Lots of Broadcasting links and information: http://www.choisser.com/broadcast.html

Check out photos and info on my antennas: http://www. larrykenney.com/tvantennas.html

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Please do let me know how well K03HY-D is doing signal-wise in San Francisco. It looks to me that it is tough to receive it further south than the San Fran and Oakland airports.
Here in Hayward, K03HY-D ... works just fine with an outdoor antenna model only (VU-75). (attic & garage attic installs).... Does not work with my rabbit ear indoor models very well, Including zero signal readings without extreme adjustments.
Reception of K03HY-D is limited to Hayward viewers using old VHF-UHF outdoor antenna models covering channels 2 through 69.
The specs of this antenna used for San Francisco tv are:
Gains ... Low VHF 2.8 .... High VHF 5.8 .... UHF 5.8
F/B ratio for Low VHF is around 8

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I'll be turning on more subchannels. I was going to move Daystar to a higher channel but then I found that some TVs don't automatically add additional channels that I add to the transport stream. I want to make a good impression on Daystar, so I think I may leave it on channel 3 for a while, too.

Blessings,
Keith
The volume of 3-3 is blasting loud compared to 3-5.
The DTV converter box here automatically adds new sub channels here ..... if the main RF channel was previously scanned in.
Ben

Last edited by 888CALLFCC; 09-02-2014 at 08:33 PM. Reason: specs
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post #11099 of 11586 Old 09-02-2014, 08:53 PM
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Ah, there's another reason why you get decent reception at your house, Tony... you're up at 700 feet!

The elevation at the base of Sutro Tower is 834 feet above sea level. The tower itself is 977 feet tall, so the tallest point on the tower is 1,811 feet.

If you look at my list of DTV stations (link below) the Height Above Average Terrain (HAAT), which is what the FCC uses for height measurements, is shown for each station.

For a look at the changeover from the analog to the digital antennas at Sutro, check out my Sutro Tower page where you'll find a series of pictures showing them removing the old antennas and installing the new ones back in 2009. Many of the pictures were taken from my living room window. There are also lots of close up pictures of the antennas taken up at Twin Peaks.

http://www.larrykenney.com/sutrotwr.html

The official Sutro Tower website is: http://sutrotower.com/

Larry
Larry, that is a fantastic website there! And from your living room? I really enjoyed it and it's worthy of bookmarking. Thank you.

Good point on our elevation here. A new compass app has us near 800 feet. This website has us at 793': http://www.whatismyelevation.com/

From your website info, my antenna on the roof, with a 5' mast is pretty much at the base elevation of Sutro (834'). I can see how this can help with knowing what angle of inclination might be ideal. Not sure of the best way to take into account curvature, but that seems doable...

Thanks again Larry.

Last edited by TonyB1966; 09-02-2014 at 08:56 PM.
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I was looking at Larry's picture of the Sutro antennas with labels. I don't know if it's true anywhere else, but here the antennas with single channels have the best signals. For the two multi channel antennas, the lowest frequency channels have the best signals and they decrease to the highest frequency. KCSM is the weakest one by far, with KTVU the next worst. One might think that the higher frequencies just don't propagate as well but KBCW which is the highest frequency on channel 45 has the strongest UHF signal. KOFY might actually be the strongest signal but since it has to battle KUVS on 18 it's hard to tell.

Chuck
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