Originally Posted by mklawz
Today I was able to view my first game in HD. Pretty good I must say, I noticed some blurriness here and there when they moved the camera, like it took a brief moment to come into focus. Is that 'artifacting'? I dont know this stuff...
So do most people who have the OTA locals end up cancelling their locals from their provider? Or do poeple keep them for "back-up" or some kind? I feel I should hang on to them for a while.
Also, as Gilbert and I discussed the issue with WBBM not coming in with my antenna. I still dont know if it's worth spending another $50 on a better antenna. I really dont watch that much tube, I just want my ballgames now and then. I just can't come up with anything on that channel that I would watch. So I just dunno...
First, "artifacting" is when the action on the screen is so different, frame by frame, that the video encorders at the Tv station or uplink equipment can't keep up. Thus, the video appears blurry, or "blocky". If you looked close, you'd actually see individual squares on the screen. Due to the way the video is processed, progressive scan high definition doesn't usually have this problem, though resolution suffers slightly as a result. Watch a NASCAR race on NBC and you'll see it there, too.
Sometimes, it is because they don't allocate enough bits or data to the channel. Although it appears that they have made improvements now, WCIU-DT 26-2's simulcast of "MeTV" was "interesting" to watch when they showed high school basketball games on weekends this past season. The macroblocking there was obvious (sorry, HVS, it was a good example---and normally, WCIU-DT gets it right every time). When "Create" first signed on 11-3...that was like watching a Real(tm) video at 128 kb resolution. It's a lot better now, but they had to reduce the quality a bit recently to accomodate V-Me on 11-4.
I have seen people have over-the-air as dish users for multiple reasons:
1) ALL channels sent in HD are seen in HD over your TV, whether Dish or Comcast has an agreement with them...or not. Furthermore, out here in DeKalb, they don't have WYCC-TV or WYCC-DT on our system at all. I get both via antenna. Also,
Comcast won't have Rockford HD stations due to bandwidth limitations on their system for a long time. I can get them all, and sometimes, WMAQ forgets to throw the HD switch, and I get Rockford's NBC...and they don't forget. No, nobody knows exactly why WMAQ forgets to flip the switch. Sometimes, it's not their fault: the network hasn't equipped WMAQ with a satellite feed to get some shows in HD, such as many of the NHL games they showed this season. Word is that equipment will be in very shortly.
2) Over-the-air quality trumps HD sent via satellite. Every time. MPEG-4 converter boxes that DirecTV and Dish uses are a lot better, but over-the-air is still best. Comcast gets very close, but people still notice a slight edge of the over-the-air signal.
3) If there are channel disputes with Dish or your cable company (and there are), storms knock out your dish/cable reception, or whatever else...you have the antenna as a backup.
4) Every now and then, satellite and cable has a problem with their fiber or over-the-air feeds (Dish and DirecTV get their HD and analog signals with an antenna; I know DirecTV's "head end" is near Oak Brook, and Dish, I believe, is above a bank on the west side of Chicago). All analog signals on cable are fiber; and all are from an antenna from Dish and DirecTV. All over-the-air digital signals are antenna from *everyone*, except Comcast and *maybe* Wide Open West has a fiber feed from WBBM-DT, due to their low signal power.
5) In the spring-fall, when weather fronts come through, you can frequently get out-of-town stations. Fun to see newscasts from South Bend or Milwaukee, or beyond.
6) You can get FM signals, and the new HD Radios work well with them.
7) When the lower power stations sign on in the next year or so, you can get some of them.
8) Once you pay for the antenna and get a digital tuner box, it's all FREE.
That's a quick handful of reasons. There are more, but that gets you started.
But seriously, just to make sure you don't lose reception in the rain or bad weather, I'd seriously get the larger antenna if I were you. Just a thought...