I've read a number of reports about people being able to receive very distant transmitters from Rochester and Fort Erie during the summer, probably due to tropospheric ducting.
But that's only part of the story, or maybe none of the story. As I mentioned in my post, the issue is how much headroom does the Silver Sensor generate and is that headroom sufficient to overcome the variations in reception due to weather?
But I think this post from the thread you mentioned illustrates one user's experiences:
"Here in Minnesota, we get extremes of moisture content in the air. Dewpoints in the winter have actually been below zero, and in the summer as high as 86. While generally speaking, reception in the winter is better than in the summer
, nothing beats a good tropospheric event to stretch the radio horizon. I've gotten UHF signals from over 250 miles away, clear as a bell, during tropospheric events which usually seem to happen on calm, hot and humid summer evenings more than any other time of year. "
(I added the boldface)
Two entirely different situations. Occasional summertime reception of transmitters 250 miles away does not mean that summer reception of local transmitters is necessarily better during the summer, simply because of geography. Local transmitters are probably too close for tropospheric ducting.
If the Sensor works for you -- good luck. Remember -- reception is being able to enjoy a program for the entire program, not watching it drop in and out.
Well, duh. No offense, but your comment is insulting. I let it go the first time but not now, since you're brought it up again.
I've been watching cable TV for a long time, 30+ years. So have other HDTV Wonder users. I know what it means to have good, reliable TV. So does everyone else.
The problem with your argument is that it's based on thinking that people will put up with frequent HDTV program drop outs and not complain about it, after decades of watching zero drop out cable TV.
That idea might have worked in the 1950's when TV was new and people put up with bad reception because they didn't have anything else to compare it to, but not today, not even close.
You get HDTV for higher video and audio quality. What sense would it make to take the trouble to receive HDTV and put up with drop outs? But there is real life GTA user experiences with the Silver Sensor and the Radio Shack 1588 antenna that shows indoor antennas can work over the long term.
That's the point you keep missing. You're proposing a theory that an indoor antenna won't work when the real life experiences of actual HDTV viewers proves otherwise.
One thing you are missing completely -- there is no such thing as a digital or HD antenna. All the signals are RF, and this hasn't changed in a 100 years. The theory is the same. A high gain antenna recovers more signal than a low gain antenna. In reception, you have to overcome the noise, antenna connector & cable losses, and receiver input losses. Then what you are left with is useable signal -- it doesn't matter if it is analog or digital -- IT IS RF.
The more useable signal -- the better your reception.
Where did I say that there are HDTV specific antennas?
Well, duh again.
Yes, I know that UHF signals are RF (you should have known that after reading the link I added about UHF signal degradation) and that there is no such thing as an HDTV antenna.
I tried very hard to explain why there can be a difference between digital UHF reception, or what the Silver Sensor was designed for, and analog UHF reception, what the 4228 was designed for.
As I said in my post, it appears that the digital UHF transmission standard has been designed for receivers about 100 times more sensitive than the 1949 VHF standard, which ought to mean that a smaller antenna should be able to receive an HDTV transmission whereas it would not be able to receive an analog UHF signal.http://www.hdtvexpert.com/pages/8vsb.htm
That report, based on actual measurements, strongly supports the idea that small indoor antennas are quite capable of generating good, usable signals, which contradicts the point you're trying to make.
The author of that article is one of the technical writers for the HDTV Expert web page. Are you going to try to argue that he doesn't know that good HDTV reception means no drop outs?
The relevant quote from that article (among others) is this:
"My first attempt at such an antenna delivered as promised and was built for $10 worth of hardware store parts. Pricey antennas don't mean a thing when it comes to DTV reception."
That sums it up. Is it a waste to spend $1000+ on a tower+4228+rotator when you can spend zero extra dollars and use the Silver Sensor that comes with the HDTV Wonder? For most of the GTA, I strongly suspect so, but it depends on the front end of the receiver and local conditions, as always.
There is no question that the 4228 will generate a higher usable signal than the Silver Sensor. But this is the issue, does the Silver Sensor generate enough headroom to reliably receive all the Buffalo stations? Based on several user experiences in the GTA, it appears to be able to do the job.
If someone wants to spend money on a tower+antenna for what may be no reason other than to get a warm and fuzzy feeling that they're getting better reception, I can understand that. People buy insurance all the time.
But to extend that argument and say that you must or really ought to
get a larger antenna when the engineering and real life data suggest otherwise, that's not correct thinking.
The idea that indoor antennas don't work reliably in the GTA appears to be wrong. I've brought to this discussion engineering data, that digital TV transmission standards were designed to work with receiver sensitivities 100 times better than the analog TV standard and that weather effects are minimal with UHF frequencies. There are real life user experiences proving that small indoor antennas can work in the GTA.
You've got to do better than hand waving if you want to prove your assertion. Just saying that there are losses in the receiver chain (duh) and that more signal is better (duh**2) is, to use your word, meaningless.