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Local HDTV Info and Reception

blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bismarck440 View Post
Speaking of retro, back when I used to travel I-77 through your area (Very late 70's through early 90's), there seemed to be a popular format in radio on several stations in your area called "Carolina Beach Music",....
Most likely you are referring to the music and dance that originated around Ocean Drive, SC. Do a search on that, beach music, "The Shag", and pavilion and you will most likely have what you are looking for.

Ocean Drive the town no longer exists (part of N. Myrtle Beach) and it's real touristy there now. But the music still has a lot of fans.
tylerSC's Avatar tylerSC
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I asked earlier, but I think I need an FM Trap because my Channel Master UHF antenna and Kitztech preamp gets all the GSP radio signals full strength, including the HD Radio. As well as 95.1, 96.1, and 107.9 signals from Dallas. This may cause problems with weak TV signals such as 13-WLOS, and WSOC and WCCB which often come in at night. And 9.1 is dropping in and out this afternoon, but no 9.5 translator. I added a Radioshack 4G-LTE filter, but I think I may need an FM trap. Several preamps have them built in, but not the Kitztech 100. Just wondering if FM signals can cause overload or interference, according to what I have heard.
difuse's Avatar difuse
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
I asked earlier, but I think I need an FM Trap because my Channel Master UHF antenna and Kitztech preamp gets all the GSP radio signals full strength, including the HD Radio. As well as 95.1, 96.1, and 107.9 signals from Dallas. This may cause problems with weak TV signals such as 13-WLOS, and WSOC and WCCB which often come in at night. And 9.1 is dropping in and out this afternoon, but no 9.5 translator. I added a Radioshack 4G-LTE filter, but I think I may need an FM trap. Several preamps have them built in, but not the Kitztech 100. Just wondering if FM signals can cause overload or interference, according to what I have heard.
I would have an FM trap on an antenna I did not use to receive FM.. I'm not sure all the work that could be done to determine how much a strong FM signal might compromise DTV reception has been done. But, the trap may well help, and probably cannot hurt. Go for it.
blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
I asked earlier, but I think I need an FM Trap because my Channel Master UHF antenna and Kitztech preamp gets all the GSP radio signals full strength, including the HD Radio. As well as 95.1, 96.1, and 107.9 signals from Dallas. ......
It can also mean too much amplification on the wrong antenna for what you are trying to receive. Is this an attic install?
dixiedamsel's Avatar dixiedamsel
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I need some advice from the experts here. I would like to hook a dvr up to my OTA tv. There will be too many shows on at the same time this year. lol What I would like to know is: what type should I get and where do I get one. The only one we ever had came with the dish and I'm not going back there.

Thank you for your help.
blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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DVR options for OTA fall into two categories:
  1. Purchase a DVR
  2. Build a HTPC, add tuner cards or similar, install DVR software. These days DVR software is usually WMC or MythTV. (there are also others)


If you purchase a DVR the one that comes closest to the Dish DVRs is the Tivo Roameo. They just released a 4 tuner OTA only model that includes all the popular streaming apps. It's $49 and will record 75 hours of HD and you can add an external drive. It's as plug and play as it gets. Downside, there is a monthly fee of $14.99. (or you can opt for a lifetime option)

I live too far away from my Mom to give her reasonable support for her cord cutting. So we opted for the Tivo. The $14.99/month is well worth having something that works and who she can call for questions. It's a nice DVR. Better than Dish.

Other examples are Tablo (sp), Channel Master, Simple TV, but these all have various shortcoming tradeoffs vs cost.

For my own use, I have constructed a MythTV whole house DVR running on built from scratch PCs. I looked at WMC and while it's easier to setup, you are stuck with all the issues of dealing with Microsoft licenses and updates. It's OK for some, but being a long term Unix propeller head, I took the MythTV path. (It can simultaneously record everything being broadcast in Charlotte )

Hope this helps.
tylerSC's Avatar tylerSC
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The TiVo Roamio has the best menu interface, and less problematic issues. But you are required to have an internet connection for it to function properly. While it may or may not work as a stand alone tuner, it receives program data from the internet to function as a DVR. And I believe there is a $100 off promo code for the Lifetime subscription, which in the long term is cheaper than the monthly fee. The OTA only version will be sold at Best Buy for $49 beginning Sept. 14. There is another version now sold at Best Buy and Walmart, but it will also function as a cable DVR or antenna, depending upon your choice. But it is more expensive.
blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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Considering that they have released a model specific for OTA only, is an indication of the amount of cord cutting out there.
tylerSC's Avatar tylerSC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackcat6 View Post
It can also mean too much amplification on the wrong antenna for what you are trying to receive. Is this an attic install?
Yes the antenna is in the attic. Channel Master 4248 UHF Diamond Yagi, original American made version. Very good UHF antenna. And a Kitztech 100 preamp, and 4-way Holland splitter. The antenna will receive most all GSP signals without an amp, as well as WBTV. And it even gets WSPA RF7, which is VHF. But a preamp is needed to receive 13-WLOS from Asheville, as well as WCNC, WJZY, and WMYT from Dallas. At night, I often also receive WSOC 9.1 and WCCB. I used to frequently receive the WSOC 9.5 translator, but recently some sort of interference blocks that low power signal. Not sure if WiFi, 4G-LTE cell phone towers, or FM radio could be an issue. But overall I get good reliable reception of what I am expected to receive at my location.
OTA-DVR-guy's Avatar OTA-DVR-guy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
I asked earlier, but I think I need an FM Trap because my Channel Master UHF antenna and Kitztech preamp gets all the GSP radio signals full strength, including the HD Radio. As well as 95.1, 96.1, and 107.9 signals from Dallas. This may cause problems with weak TV signals such as 13-WLOS, and WSOC and WCCB which often come in at night. And 9.1 is dropping in and out this afternoon, but no 9.5 translator. I added a Radioshack 4G-LTE filter, but I think I may need an FM trap. Several preamps have them built in, but not the Kitztech 100. Just wondering if FM signals can cause overload or interference, according to what I have heard.
I have an old outside TV antenna (purchased in the year 2000) hooked into my in-home Sony HD radio, and get the Charlotte HD stations well. I had problems getting 99.3 WBT FM (not HD) from Rock Hill - the signal was very inconsistent. But WBT on 107.9-2 (HD) comes in strong. So do the other Charlotte stations (at least the ones I have tried). But I tried (on a whim) my new HD antenna in the radio, since it is pointed west, to see if I could get the 100,000 watt 94.5 from Greenville. Not even a whimper - only static. That antenna is mounted high above my garage gable on a pole. But my vehicles, sitting in the same garage, obviously on the ground - much lower than that antenna - will get 94.5 (not perfectly, but it does come in). The day I had an HD radio installed in my car at Best Buy in Gastonia, 98.9 HD from Spartanburg came in strong there. But back home in Mount Holly, in Belmont, and throughout Charlotte, only the analog 98.9 comes in.
tylerSC's Avatar tylerSC
04:17 PM Liked: 100
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OTA-DVR-guy View Post
I have an old outside TV antenna (purchased in the year 2000) hooked into my in-home Sony HD radio, and get the Charlotte HD stations well. I had problems getting 99.3 WBT FM (not HD) from Rock Hill - the signal was very inconsistent. But WBT on 107.9-2 (HD) comes in strong. So do the other Charlotte stations (at least the ones I have tried). But I tried (on a whim) my new HD antenna in the radio, since it is pointed west, to see if I could get the 100,000 watt 94.5 from Greenville. Not even a whimper - only static. That antenna is mounted high above my garage gable on a pole. But my vehicles, sitting in the same garage, obviously on the ground - much lower than that antenna - will get 94.5 (not perfectly, but it does come in). The day I had an HD radio installed in my car at Best Buy in Gastonia, 98.9 HD from Spartanburg came in strong there. But back home in Mount Holly, in Belmont, and throughout Charlotte, only the analog 98.9 comes in.
What type of new HD antenna do you have pointed west? And is there an amp?
OTA-DVR-guy's Avatar OTA-DVR-guy
04:42 PM Liked: 11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
What type of new HD antenna do you have pointed west? And is there an amp?
DB4-E DB4e Extended Long Range OutdoorDTV Antenna


I do not have an amp. Thanks.

tylerSC's Avatar tylerSC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OTA-DVR-guy View Post
DB4-E DB4e Extended Long Range OutdoorDTV Antenna


I do not have an amp. Thanks.
The DB4e is not expected to receive FM radio. Basic rabbit ears would work better. But to receive 94.5 and 98.9 from GSP, then a good dedicated FM antenna such as Winegard 6000 should perform very well. And those Sony HD Radios have very good tuners.
dixiedamsel's Avatar dixiedamsel
04:55 PM Liked: 10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackcat6 View Post
DVR options for OTA fall into two categories:
  1. Purchase a DVR
  2. Build a HTPC, add tuner cards or similar, install DVR software. These days DVR software is usually WMC or MythTV. (there are also others)


If you purchase a DVR the one that comes closest to the Dish DVRs is the Tivo Roameo. They just released a 4 tuner OTA only model that includes all the popular streaming apps. It's $49 and will record 75 hours of HD and you can add an external drive. It's as plug and play as it gets. Downside, there is a monthly fee of $14.99. (or you can opt for a lifetime option)

I live too far away from my Mom to give her reasonable support for her cord cutting. So we opted for the Tivo. The $14.99/month is well worth having something that works and who she can call for questions. It's a nice DVR. Better than Dish.

Other examples are Tablo (sp), Channel Master, Simple TV, but these all have various shortcoming tradeoffs vs cost.

For my own use, I have constructed a MythTV whole house DVR running on built from scratch PCs. I looked at WMC and while it's easier to setup, you are stuck with all the issues of dealing with Microsoft licenses and updates. It's OK for some, but being a long term Unix propeller head, I took the MythTV path. (It can simultaneously record everything being broadcast in Charlotte )

Hope this helps.
Blackcat6,

Thank you for your response. The options seem limited in that my husband has said no way to another subscription service(we have a Roku with Netflix, Acorn and Amazon Prime) and the fact that I don't think I can build a dvr. I mean, I could probably try if I had a For Dummies book that covered that. I would need lots of pictures.
veedon's Avatar veedon
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Doesn't anyone still make a DVR for cheapskates? A DVR that you can manually program to record a show, the way people used to program VCRs manually?
tylerSC's Avatar tylerSC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post
Doesn't anyone still make a DVR for cheapskates? A DVR that you can manually program to record a show, the way people used to program VCRs manually?
Take a look at the Iview 3500 and Homeworx 150 models for the cheaper versions. See HDTV Recorders thread. But if TiVo is too pricey, the next choice would be Channel Master DVR+. No subscription fees there.
blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dixiedamsel View Post
..... I could probably try if I had a For Dummies book that covered that. I would need lots of pictures.
My recommendation is that if you lack the knowledge to build a HTPC/DVR, then you better stick to one with a subscription. We are a long way past the days of the VCR with the flashing clock that nobody knows how to set.

A good DVR does time shifting (pause, FF, Rev) of live TV, record multiple OTA broadcast HD video streams which will amount to gigabytes of data/hour, and have decent scheduling with conflict resolution of TV shows that you like to watch. If your favorite series gets preempted and shown at a later time, you want your DVR to figure it out and reschedule. You will want a machine that allows you to seamlessly record and watch live or recorded TV at the same time. And most importantly you want this in a small box that doesn't make any noise.

A machine that can do all this, and do it well, isn't cheap. The Tivo is a bargain if you can't manage your own build.
blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
Yes the antenna is in the attic. Channel Master 4248 UHF Diamond Yagi, original American made version. Very good UHF antenna......
At one time a very nice antenna but optimized for the pre-digital UHF definition. Today you can get the same usable gain with a much smaller antenna. A combo HBU-33 would be a nice replacement. It should also be less affected by FM.

As noted earlier, I don't recommend attic installs especially for Yagi designs. Given what you said, IMO if you mounted that antenna outside, and ditched the Kitsch amp, your issues would go away. If needed, you can use a distribution amp to drive the 4 TVs.
tylerSC's Avatar tylerSC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackcat6 View Post
At one time a very nice antenna but optimized for the pre-digital UHF definition. Today you can get the same usable gain with a much smaller antenna. A combo HBU-33 would be a nice replacement. It should also be less affected by FM.

As noted earlier, I don't recommend attic installs especially for Yagi designs. Given what you said, IMO if you mounted that antenna outside, and ditched the Kitsch amp, your issues would go away. If needed, you can use a distribution amp to drive the 4 TVs.
Overall, that Channel Master 4248 antenna outperforms my other UHF antennas. I also have a 43XG from Antennas Direct which also performs very well. The HBU-33 is a great antenna, but the UHF gain is not as strong. And Antennacraft does make good UHF antennas, the MXU-47 and MXU-59 which offer higher UHF gain than the HBU-33. And I use the Kitztech amp because of the lower noise figure which provides stronger signal strength readings. However, I do have a Channel Master 3414 distribution amp which may provide a more balanced signal, and less resistance to overload. I may still experiment with that. And by the way, I do have an HBU-33 pointed at the GSP signals when necessary, but normally the CM antenna pulls them all in, even 7 and 13. So I use the Channel Master as the main antenna, but have the 43XG and HBU-33 as backup.
blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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Kitztech makes an excellent low noise amp. But I am thinking the 4248 combined with it is why you are getting noise from those FM stations. It's probably via that very large corner reflector on the 4248.
tylerSC's Avatar tylerSC
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^^I added the Radioshack FM Trap. Signal strength did improve a bit on WSPA and WBTV. But still no luck with the WSOC 9.5 translator. But it is too low power to realistically receive, despite being closer than the Dallas signals. But I used to receive it rather reliably, but now some sort of interference is blocking it. Would be better if I could put the antenna outside.
Bismarck440's Avatar Bismarck440
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
The TiVo Roamio has the best menu interface, and less problematic issues. But you are required to have an internet connection for it to function properly. While it may or may not work as a stand alone tuner, it receives program data from the internet to function as a DVR. And I believe there is a $100 off promo code for the Lifetime subscription, which in the long term is cheaper than the monthly fee. The OTA only version will be sold at Best Buy for $49 beginning Sept. 14. There is another version now sold at Best Buy and Walmart, but it will also function as a cable DVR or antenna, depending upon your choice. But it is more expensive.
Why a monthly fee... for the program guide?

I'm curious how this would work?... my dad called last week & said his Panasonic DVD Recoder went south.. has a OTA tuner, but was coupled with a STB since the transition. I personally just use a couple old VCR's with STB's... don't time shift that much to warrant anything else....

http://www.amazon.com/Mediasonic-HW-150PVR-HomeWorx-Converter-Recording/dp/B00I2ZBD1U/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1408989979&sr=8-2&keywords=hdtv+tuner
bdfox18doe's Avatar bdfox18doe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
^ Would be better if I could put the antenna outside.
Just do it..Tell mom to get over it..
difuse's Avatar difuse
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerSC View Post
^^I added the Radioshack FM Trap. Signal strength did improve a bit on WSPA and WBTV. But still no luck with the WSOC 9.5 translator. But it is too low power to realistically receive, despite being closer than the Dallas signals. But I used to receive it rather reliably, but now some sort of interference is blocking it. Would be better if I could put the antenna outside.
I suppose I could point out what may be obvious, that being that to receive a low power signal the antenna needs to be aimed very precisely.. That would not only be azimuth (raw direction) but also angle to ground and height. The angle relative to the ground might have changed, or, the height might have increased or decreased for some reason. Its possible a little patient experimenting will produce more desirable results.
OTA-DVR-guy's Avatar OTA-DVR-guy
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Last night I had the absolute strangest thing happen. I turned on 18.2, AntennaTV, on my Sony 52" flat panel, which has an antenna hooked directly into it. I got a good picture, but no sound on 18.2, 18.3, and 18.4. Sound did come in 18.1. Then I turned on my DVR, through the same TV, and got good picture and sound on all four channel 18s. The DVR is the one that had the captions issue (the captions were just fine).

Sound missing on 3 of 4 channels, but all were correct through the DVR tuner. Subchannels in general were not the problem, because 46.2 got sound just fine.
blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by difuse View Post
I suppose I could point out what may be obvious, that being that to receive a low power signal the antenna needs to be aimed very precisely.. That would not only be azimuth (raw direction) but also angle to ground and height. The angle relative to the ground might have changed, or, the height might have increased or decreased for some reason. Its possible a little patient experimenting will produce more desirable results.
It could also be that during this time of the year, the wood in the roof has absorbed enough moisture out of the air to affect the signal. My guess is that if it is marginal, then it will be perfectly fine again by January. (assuming that nothing mechanical has changed as you correctly point out)

This is why I've decided, from personal experience, that attic installs are a bad idea especially if you are trying to pick up difficult to receive signals. It adds a huge number of unknown variables that are difficult to diagnose.
blackcat6's Avatar blackcat6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bismarck440 View Post
Why a monthly fee... for the program guide?.....
Two reasons:

  1. In the case of Tivo you are subsidizing the cost of the unit because there is no other way you are going to get a DVR with it's capabilities for $49. You can avoid the fee with a "lifetime subscription". You basically pay the full hardware cost of the unit up front.
  2. 2 week EPG guide info is copyrighted and the providers want to be paid for providing the service. Most of it comes from Tribune and the fees flow back to them. I even pay $25/year to Schedules Direct for guide info.

You can go with the free EIT info transmitted by the stations, but these can be as little as a few hours or in the case of WBTV even disappear at times. It makes it useless for program scheduling.
bdfox18doe's Avatar bdfox18doe
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Yepper. we have been seeing that all of a sudden on another older Sony set that one person here has. What is the model number
please?

There has been a lot of stuff replaced here of late. New PSIP Generators, Encoding, Microwave STL/TSL...
difuse's Avatar difuse
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OTA-DVR-guy View Post
Last night I had the absolute strangest thing happen. I turned on 18.2, AntennaTV, on my Sony 52" flat panel, which has an antenna hooked directly into it. I got a good picture, but no sound on 18.2, 18.3, and 18.4. Sound did come in 18.1. Then I turned on my DVR, through the same TV, and got good picture and sound on all four channel 18s. The DVR is the one that had the captions issue (the captions were just fine).

Sound missing on 3 of 4 channels, but all were correct through the DVR tuner. Subchannels in general were not the problem, because 46.2 got sound just fine.
Sometimes a button on a remote will be accidentally pushed, causing a TV to go to a second sound service ( a alternate audio for that program). Sometimes, there is nothing on that service, and, so, no sound. It has happened to me, and I cannot say it happened to you, but I'd guess it did.
OTA-DVR-guy's Avatar OTA-DVR-guy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by difuse View Post
Sometimes a button on a remote will be accidentally pushed, causing a TV to go to a second sound service ( a alternate audio for that program). Sometimes, there is nothing on that service, and, so, no sound. It has happened to me, and I cannot say it happened to you, but I'd guess it did.
I thought about that. But if that's the situation, 18.1 The CW, 46.1 Fox, and 46.2 Movies! must have had the same sound on SAP, because they all got sound. It was only 18.2-4 that were muted.

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