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Boston, MA - OTA - Page 346

post #10351 of 10633
Thank you for this information, it is very helpful, yet frustrating for me, as now it seems, where I once was able to get signal from the current set up, I am not currently, which means there is an issue on my end? So what, anyone, would you suggest could be my issue? I mean, it's obviously probably the unit or the cable, but idk, if anyone has any other suggestions I would much appreciate those too. And I will try to point toward the NH stations before I give up completely, but I have a lot of tree cover in that direction.
post #10352 of 10633
Quote:
Originally Posted by RYankowitz View Post

I still do not have an ETA on its re-installation. 
Thanks for the update. Nice having an insider participate in the forum.

Interestingly WSBK RF 39 seems to be much better on the temporary setup here in Southern NH. It was pretty much a no show until the main antenna failed, now is is pretty reliable. Tvfool models it at -1.3 dB NM for me. Doubt if atmospherics account for the change.

/tom
post #10353 of 10633
Quote:
Originally Posted by giacom3 View Post

Anyone NORTH OF BOSTON getting ANY reception right now? I read the most recent above about the main antenna still being fixed. However, I've heard there is weaker signals going out from lower on the tower, that signal is somewhat increased at night, and that NBC and FOX are on a different tower altogether. Yet, I've gotten NOTHING to very little over the past several weeks. I'm in Beverly and got signal great up until the initial failure in April. We even would get all the channels sporadically on Sat/Sundays until about a month ago. Now it's mostly nothing, maybe getting in 1 channel once a week very scrambled briefly. Any comparison of signal from northerners would help determine if it's just bad right now or I have an equipment issue. Thanks!


I'm in Marblehead (on Salem harbor) and with indoor antennas, still receiving all the Boston stations fine.

WBZ (and ch. 38) and all PBS signals are rock solid, with signal signal to noise readings of 30 - 35dB on the TV's signal quality metering (where 16dB is the drop out zone).

Channels 5, 7 and 56 are right behind, with channel 68 being the weakest.

That said, with summer foliage and on windy/stormy days I do occasionally have some breakup with the weaker stations in the group.
post #10354 of 10633
Hello Bob Y.

Is it still anticipated once repairs to tower are completed - that stations will assume their prior positions and broadcast power will approximate that which obtained - before ?

Not that I am worried or anything. It's just I can't think straight without WGBH.

Regards,

Barry Levy
post #10355 of 10633
Quote:
Originally Posted by bardot861 View Post

Hello Bob Y.
Is it still anticipated once repairs to tower are completed - that stations will assume their prior positions and broadcast power will approximate that which obtained - before ?
Not that I am worried or anything. It's just I can't think straight without WGBH.
Regards,
Barry Levy

Yes, we expect to return everything back to normal.

post #10356 of 10633
WGBH posted the following update on their website a couple of days ago:
Quote:
July 2, 2012

Inspection of the shared upper master antenna revealed that the damage was so extensive that it requires a complete refurbishment, which is approximately a ten-week project.

We anticipate that the antenna will ship back from the factory to the tower site about the middle of August. Re-installation and testing may then extend into September.

We understand that this is a very frustrating situation for all of the viewers who rely on our over-air signal, and we sincerely appreciate everyone's continued patience and understanding.

Happy 4th!
Paul
post #10357 of 10633
thanks for the update.

Wondering if this experience can result in a marketable talent. Becoming adept at filling in the dialogue - during those dreaded "drop-outs". End up with oddly off kilter PBS Newshour - Twilight Zone amalgam.

Barry
post #10358 of 10633
FYI. WCVB-TV will be adding "ME-TV" to 5.2 in the not too distant future. (If they haven't all ready).

http://www.tvnewscheck.com/article/60965/metv-adds-five-more-hearst-stations
post #10359 of 10633
Quote:
Originally Posted by W1KNE View Post

FYI. WCVB-TV will be adding "ME-TV" to 5.2 in the not too distant future. (If they haven't all ready).
http://www.tvnewscheck.com/article/60965/metv-adds-five-more-hearst-stations

Great more wasted bandwidth
post #10360 of 10633
Quote:
Originally Posted by W1KNE View Post

FYI. WCVB-TV will be adding "ME-TV" to 5.2 in the not too distant future. (If they haven't all ready).
http://www.tvnewscheck.com/article/60965/metv-adds-five-more-hearst-stations

Isn't ME-TV already running on WMFP (or something like that) on Channel 62? And don't they also run RTV, another oldies channel, on one of their subs? And I think it's also running on WMUR (Manchester, but in the Boston market) on one of their subs (I can't pick that one up in Boston)?
Oh - and it's only wasted bandwidth if you don't like classic TV. I'm not a sports enthusiast, but look how many sports channels there are!
post #10361 of 10633
Quote:
Originally Posted by W1KNE View Post

FYI. WCVB-TV will be adding "ME-TV" to 5.2 in the not too distant future. (If they haven't all ready).
http://www.tvnewscheck.com/article/60965/metv-adds-five-more-hearst-stations

Isn't ME-TV already running on WMFP (or something like that) on Channel 62? And don't they also run RTV, another oldies channel, on one of their subs? And I think it's also running on WMUR (Manchester, but in the Boston market) on one of their subs (I can't pick that one up in Boston)?
Oh - and it's only wasted bandwidth if you don't like classic TV. I'm not a sports enthusiast, but look how many sports channels there are!

WMFP carries about 2/3 of the MeTV schedule, and infomercials the rest of the time. Most likely WCVB will carry it full time. WMFP can move RTV back to the main channel, or perhaps find something else, like AntennaTV.

I like many of the old shows, personally, but even for those who don't - at least this is free, unlike the high percentage of cable and satellite bills that covers only sports channels.
post #10362 of 10633
I don't mind ME being on one more subchannel. I get WCVB at 93% vs 88% for WMFP and 64% for WMUR -- and, yeah, I noticed WMFP runs a lot of infomercials instead of the ME feed. It seems that ION shows up on even more channels, but I can rarely pull any of these in (RF 32 is closest and most powerful, AND directly in front of my 91XG, but I can rarely pull it in (danville, nh).

Ditto on PBS. I get RF 43 (WGBX) at 88% on my DTVPal, and WENH at 88%, but WGBH (RF 19) is only around 60%.

With OTA, getting content from multiple towers isn't wasted bandwidth so much as it is more opportunities for solid reception. I watch WMUR only for NH news/politics (and to avoid MA preemptions).
post #10363 of 10633
WGBH has posted a "Signal Update" on their website:

August 6, 2012

We expect the repaired antenna to be delivered back to the tower site on August 21. In preparation for hoisting and re-installing it to the top of the tower, numerous parts and lifting equipment will need to be positioned during the days leading up to the antenna's arrival. This work will sometimes require power reductions and complete interruptions in service. As the work begins, we'll do everything possible to keep our website updated with reports from the tower site. Weather permitting, it is our hope that the antenna will be re-installed and running normally by the end of August.

We're grateful for your continued patience and support. Viewers can request updates on the signal work here:

Lets hope everything is up and running for September's Ring Cycle smile.gif
post #10364 of 10633
Any one know why The Cool TV on 50.3 is no longer shown?
50.3 is now a simulcast of the main channel
post #10365 of 10633
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmyv2000 View Post

Any one know why The Cool TV on 50.3 is no longer shown?
50.3 is now a simulcast of the main channel
It's actually been like that for a few weeks. I think there's a dispute betwen WBIN and the people who run Cool TV.
post #10366 of 10633
FYI from http://boston.cbslocal.com/2012/08/15/wbz-tv-mytv38-statement-on-reduced-over-the-air-signal/

BOSTON (CBS) – Several Boston television stations, including WBZ-TV and myTV38, are experiencing a reduced over the air signal.

Here is an update on the situation from Ro Dooley Webster, Director of Communications:

“Due to essential repair work on the TV tower in Needham, a number of Boston stations including WBZ-TV and WSBK-TV are transmitting at reduced power. Once the damaged antenna and associated equipment has been repaired, we will return to normal operations. We thank viewers very much for their patience while we work hard to resolve this problem.”
post #10367 of 10633
WGBH has posted two more updates as follows:

August 14, 2012

As of 12:30pm on Tuesday, August 14, WGBH 2 is operating at about 35% power on the standby antenna to help protect the tower crew from exposure to dangerous RF radiation while they rig the tower for the return and hoist of the repaired upper master antenna. Channel 2 should go back to full power on the standby antenna by about 6pm on Tuesday evening.

oops, a bit late on that one. And:

August 15, 2012

Work is again underway on the Needham transmission tower to prepare for the re-installation of the repaired upper master antenna.

Over the next two weeks, working at a height of over 1,000 feet, the crew will be rigging the tower and positioning lifting equipment, re-installing new lines and components, and hoisting and re-installing the 50 foot long, 16,000 pound refurbished upper antenna. Once the antenna is in place and operational, the crew will then remove the two temporary antennas and de-rig the tower.

The work schedule is dynamic and can change quickly because of many factors, including weather and how long each operation takes. To minimize the time on the tower and ensure they are prepared for the antenna’s arrival, the crew will take every opportunity to advance each stage of the work as quickly as possible. Because of this, when the crew has to reduce transmitting power and/or shutdown completely, there can be little to no notice.

Between August 15 and August 30, viewers should be aware that reception will have many periods of instability, particularly during the daytime hours when the crew is actively working on the tower. However, on Wednesday, August 15, WGBX 44 moved to an auxiliary antenna, which could affect reception for some viewers 24/7 until WGBX 44 moves back to the re-installed upper master antenna, currently planned for August 24-25.

WGBH 2 will mostly remain at its current power until the upper antenna is re-installed on August 21, though occasional power reductions during the day can be expected. The antenna hoist and re-installation work will necessitate all stations to reduce power on August 21. And by August 24, we expect WGBH 2 will move from its current position on the auxiliary antenna, back to its permanent home on the bottom master antenna.

We’re sincerely grateful for the patience and understanding of all of our viewers who have been affected by the antenna failure.

Ever hopeful!
post #10368 of 10633
Yesterday, the gin pole which was used previously to lower the damaged antenna, could be seen to have been again installed. It extends way above the lower master antenna, so probably the lower antenna cannot be used until the work is completed.
post #10369 of 10633
Big changes coming in October for PBS viewers in MA, NH

Due to loss of funding NHPTV is outsourcing much of its operations including membership services, back-office functions and master control operations to WGBH. NHPTV will continue to be independent and produce local and national programs.

Press release at http://www.nhptv.org/pressroom/release_detail.asp?hp_id=1364

For viewers:
  • NHPTV will no longer broadcast PBS national programming "off schedule".
  • WGBH-2 and NHPTV-Prime schedules will merge and largely be the same.
  • WGBX-44 and NHPTV-Explore schedules will merge and largely be the same.
  • NHPTV will pick up World and Create subchannels.
  • WGBH and NHPTV will exchange locally produced programs like Greater Boston, Windows to the Wild and Roadside Stories.
  • They will also engage in some sort of "member swap". More on that at http://connect.wgbh.org/NHPTVupdates
  • Comcast will drop the out-of-state stations.

Ouch!
post #10370 of 10633
From Mr.H
Quote:
WGBH has posted two more updates as follows:

August 14, 2012

As of 12:30pm on Tuesday, August 14, WGBH 2 is operating at about 35% power on the standby antenna to help protect the tower crew from exposure to dangerous RF radiation while they rig the tower for the return and hoist of the repaired upper master antenna. Channel 2 should go back to full power on the standby antenna by about 6pm on Tuesday evening.

oops, a bit late on that one. And:

August 15, 2012

Work is again underway on the Needham transmission tower to prepare for the re-installation of the repaired upper master antenna.

Over the next two weeks, working at a height of over 1,000 feet, the crew will be rigging the tower and positioning lifting equipment, re-installing new lines and components, and hoisting and re-installing the 50 foot long, 16,000 pound refurbished upper antenna. Once the antenna is in place and operational, the crew will then remove the two temporary antennas and de-rig the tower.

The work schedule is dynamic and can change quickly because of many factors, including weather and how long each operation takes. To minimize the time on the tower and ensure they are prepared for the antenna’s arrival, the crew will take every opportunity to advance each stage of the work as quickly as possible. Because of this, when the crew has to reduce transmitting power and/or shutdown completely, there can be little to no notice.

Between August 15 and August 30, viewers should be aware that reception will have many periods of instability, particularly during the daytime hours when the crew is actively working on the tower. However, on Wednesday, August 15, WGBX 44 moved to an auxiliary antenna, which could affect reception for some viewers 24/7 until WGBX 44 moves back to the re-installed upper master antenna, currently planned for August 24-25.

WGBH 2 will mostly remain at its current power until the upper antenna is re-installed on August 21, though occasional power reductions during the day can be expected. The antenna hoist and re-installation work will necessitate all stations to reduce power on August 21. And by August 24, we expect WGBH 2 will move from its current position on the auxiliary antenna, back to its permanent home on the bottom master antenna.

We’re sincerely grateful for the patience and understanding of all of our viewers who have been affected by the antenna failure.

Ever hopeful!

This afternoon, the antenna could be seen back at the top of the tower, leaning slightly off vertical, supported by the gin pole and rigging. Tonight at around 8 PM, it was vertical, but not surprisingly, the gin pole appeared to be still present.

They appear to be very close to returning all signals completely to normal.
post #10371 of 10633
WGBH just posted this "Signal Update" - the end is in sight!! smile.gif

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The project to re-install the upper masterantenna has been progressing quickly. The repaired antenna was successfully re-installed atop the Needham transmission tower on Monday, August 20.

With the revised schedule, we now expect WGBH 2 to move back to its permanent home on the lower master antenna sometime on Wednesday, August 22. Work will continue on Wednesday and Thursday to install additional components, remove lifting equipment, and move WGBX 44, and commercial stations WBZ, WCVB, and WSBK, back to the repaired upper master antenna.

Then, during the early morning hours from about 1am to 5am on Friday, Aug. 24, there will be a full shutdown of all stations on the tower for final tuning and testing of the antenna and lines. Viewers who watch us over-the-air, as well as on some distant cable systems, will lose all television service from us during that overnight testing period.

It is our hope that during the day on Friday, August 24, normal broadcast transmissions will be fully and permanently restored.

We're grateful for your continued patience and support.

Yey!
post #10372 of 10633
That sounds terrific! I am able to get them as well as all the NH stations with an amplified indoor antenna (In my attic) fine even at the reduced power level. Most stations are only down a tad (Ex. WBZ used to read 100%....during this antenna situation 92%)

Here is keeping the fingers crossed!
post #10373 of 10633
Bill how high are you in Haverhill? I'm a little jealous of your reception. I'm just a little north in Danville, NH. My antenna is ~140' above sea level and I do not do as well. I'll be taking down some trees in the fall hoping to jack some of my numbers. I mostly struggle with the various ION broadcasters, WLVI, and WBIN.
post #10374 of 10633
Hmmmm, according to the deed I got when I bought the property, I'm approximately 115 feet above sea level. The house is surrounded by trees averaging 50 to 70 feet tall. I've got a ham radio tower that is 50 feet tall with ham antennas on it and I'm still not over the trees. I stuck the outdoor antenna(s) in the attic with a combiner and preamp feeding a master antenna system to get reception throughout the house. The house is a 2 story colonial. Works great!

FYI, the antenna system in the attic is a 4 bay bow-tie UHF antenna facing SW towards the Needham area, and an 8 element VHF LP facing NNW for channels 9 & 11. They got into a splitter to bring them to one line which feeds into the Channel Master preamp. It then goes to my basement where the signal goes into another distribution amp all over the house. Works great!
post #10375 of 10633
Final (hopefully) "Signal Update" from WGBH

Friday, August 24, 2012

The repairs to the upper master antenna are complete and normal broadcast transmissions have been fully restored for WGBH 2 and WGBX 44, as well as the other stations that share the Needham transmission tower.

Viewers who watch our broadcast services over-the-air and are currently not able to receive WGBH 2 or WGBX 44, please try rescanning your channels and/or making minor adjustments to the position of your antenna, which should allow you to reacquire our signal if you are within our normal broadcast coverage area.

We know what a difficult time it’s been for our over-air and cable viewers who have been without WGBH since the antenna failure on April 8, and we’re sincerely grateful for everyone’s patience and support. Thank you!
post #10376 of 10633
I had a DB8 and replaced it with a 91xg since most of my stations are in a straight line. I also have a y5-7-13 for wenh amd wmur. The trees around my house are red pines and oak and maple. A stand or oak and a handful of red pines obstruct my LOS to the south and red pines obstruct my LOS to the west. When these are wet and moving, I have reception issues. I think things will be better after I cut them down in the fall. If not, I may move the antenna outside as a last resort.
post #10377 of 10633
Hello there! I have a quick question about some towers which are fairly close to Boston:

x8WPw.jpg

These were visible while on I-95/MA 128 North in the Weston/Waltham stretch, near US Route 20. Knowing the TV towers in Needham were behind me to the south, can somebody tell me what these are for? Thank you in advance! smile.gif
post #10378 of 10633
The location is referred to as Bear Hill.
post #10379 of 10633
Thanks for the input! I'm rarely on that portion of I-95/MA 128 and wasn't familiar with these towers. The picture was taken this past Saturday, if that matters. My friend was driving from the Turnpike, then north up I-95/MA 128 to the MA Route 2 exit, heading to the Alewife MBTA "T" station.
post #10380 of 10633
wbz and wgbx signal strength has dipped to 70-ish tonight while wgbh and wlvi are normal (90 for me). maybe there is still tuning to be done?
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