My digital TV saga begins with my purchase of a Samsung SIR TS-160 HD receiver off eBay. I bought it to see what digital TV was all about and was hoping to be able to receive the San Francisco area digital TV signals despite being told by all the "experts" that digital reception from San Francisco was not possible in this area because of the distance and intervening terrain.
When I got the receiver, I hooked it up to my existing Winegard Chromstar 8200 rooftop antenna with a Winegard preamp. I had always been able to receive good reception of the San Francisco analog signals so I thought I had a good chance at getting the digitals.
This was not to be the case. I was only able to receive the six local digital channels, KSBW-8, KNTV-11, KCBA-35, KCAH-25, KION-46 and the local Univision channel 67 which was 31 digital. One time I did receive digital channels 7 and 38 from SF but this was just a fluke due to favorable atmospheric conditions and was not reliable.
After much research on the internet, I decided to try another antenna which had been favorably reviewed and was described as the highest gain UHF antenna available, the XG-91 from antennasdirect.com. I also bought a new preamp, the Channel Master 7777.
What a difference! After installing the new antenna, I am now able to get all the digital stations in the Monterey and San Francisco bay areas. A list of the channels and comments follow:
2.1 - KTVU - Fox San Francisco - HD Broadcasts Dolby Digital (DD) most of the time
4.1 - KRON - Ind. San Francisco - SD; No Dolby Digital
4.2 - HD-NET - Full-time HD content - No Dolby Digital
5.1 - KPIX - CBS San Francisco - Dolby Digital on some primetime shows
7.1 - KGO - ABC San Francisco - " " " " " "
7.2 - KGO - Reruns of prior shows (mostly news)
7.3 - KGO - AccuWeather - Full-time weather channel
8.1 - KSBW - NBC - Salinas - No Dolby Digital
8.2 - KSBW - WeatherPlus - Full-time weather channel
9.1 - KQED - PBS - HD only after 8PM; off-air during the day; DD on some shows
9.2 - KQED - PBS - Encore channel shows reruns, No DD
9.3 - KQED - PBS - World channel shows news and documentaries
9.4 - KQED - PBS - Life channel - Cooking and home improvment; off-air after 8PM
9.5 - KQED - PBS - Kids channed - Cartoons and children's shows
11.1 - KNTV - NBC - San Francisco - DD on some primetime shows
11.2 - KNTV - WeatherPlus - Full-time weather channel
14.1 - KDTV - Univision - San Francisco - Spanish programming; No DD
20.1 - KBWB - WB - San Francisco
25.1 - KCAH - PBS - Watsonville - Simulcast of KTEH-54; No DD
26.1 - KTSF - San Francisco - Asian programming; No DD
31.1 - KSMS - Univision Monterey - Spanish programming
31.2 - KCU - Telefutura Salinas - Spanish programming
32.1 - KMTP - Ind. San Francisco -
35.1 - KCBA - Fox Salinas - DD on some primetime programs
36.1 - KICU - Ind. San Jose - No DD
38.1 - KCNS - Ind. San Francisco - Shopping channel
43.1 - KCSM - PBS San Mateo - Weak signal; rarely comes in
43.2 - KCSM - Jazz TV - San Mateo - " " " " "
44.1 - KBHK - UPN San Francisco - No DD
46.1 - KION - CBS Monterey - No DD
48.1 - KSTS - Telemundo San Jose - Spanish programming
65.1 - KKPX - PAX San Francisco - No DD
65.2 - KKPX - PAX East
65.3 - Worship Channel - Religious programming
65.4 - Faith Channel - Religious programming
66.1 - KFSF - Telefutura San Francisco - Spanish programming
66.2 - Simulcast of KDTV - Univision - Spanish programming
68.1 - KTLN - Novato - Religous programming; most distant digital channel I receive
Reception of the San Francisco digital channels is possible in our area but I don't know of anyone else in the Monterey area that has done it. Maybe my story will inspire others to try.