How to get regular TV? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 11 Old 02-06-2018, 02:18 PM - Thread Starter
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How to get regular TV?

Been browsing this forum and have a hard time determining where this question should go. I have a Panasonic TH-50PE700U and can't figure out what I need to do to get standard TV. I dropped cable and now just want to receive standard TV. I tried connecting a big old antenna I had in the attic with a coax cable, but nothing but fuzz all channels.
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post #2 of 11 Old 02-06-2018, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffnc View Post
Been browsing this forum and have a hard time determining where this question should go. I have a Panasonic TH-50PE700U and can't figure out what I need to do to get standard TV. I dropped cable and now just want to receive standard TV. I tried connecting a big old antenna I had in the attic with a coax cable, but nothing but fuzz all channels.
You need a digital TV antenna. Here's a couple from Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/1byone-Amplif...+antenna&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B076C45CSY...20tv%20antenna

Ian

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post #3 of 11 Old 02-06-2018, 03:44 PM
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^^^^^ yep. You need a tv with an ATSC tuner built-in (or you can purchase a digital STB with or without a DVR). Mount your antenna, preferably on the roof outside, and scan to OTA tv stations. To see what you can get in your area it's best to go to TVFool, put in your address, and see what is available at your location. Then go to the HDTV forum that is specific for your area, or close to it, post your TVFool results, and see what the folks there have to say about the best antenna for your location. You can mount an antenna in the attic space but the best possible location is outside on your roof.
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post #4 of 11 Old 02-06-2018, 06:40 PM - Thread Starter
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I guess I figured it out. The TV required a scan to be completed before it would tune any channels at all. I assumed the scan was just for saving favorites and going to the next channel by skipping empty channels. But it actually had to do a complete scan before it would tune any channel at all. The TV apparently must have the ATSC tuner built-in like you mention.

With the antenna I have, the reception and picture are spectacular. I was pleasantly surprised that regular TV can look this good. But I've never looked at it since I was younger. After the switch to cable years ago, I've never looked back. I'll be watching the Olympics, etc. I'm happy!

The antenna it's plugged into right now is more or less this one. I haven't experimented with placement or other types of antenna, haven't had time yet. Maybe I'll move it onto the back porch. It actually has a remote motor for turning which I originally planned to use for FM radio years ago, but never used it.
https://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=FM6
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post #5 of 11 Old 02-06-2018, 08:37 PM
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^^^^^ if you want FM stations, then you can connect a signal separator at the base of the antenna so that the FM frequencies are separated from the tv frequencies and then just run a separate coax from the separator to your FM receiver and another coax to your tv. I did that for years with no degradation of tv reception at all.
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post #6 of 11 Old 02-07-2018, 04:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Oh that's a pretty good idea.
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post #7 of 11 Old 02-10-2018, 06:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mailiang View Post
You need a digital TV antenna. Here's a couple from Amazon:
NO NO NO! Any TV antenna will work. It's the mode of transmission (digital vs. analog) that's different, not the frequency ranges!

Jeffnc, you need to:
1- make sure the tuner is in digital mode,
2- you need to place the tv in scan mode to find the channels.

#2 is important because the stations you're looking for are not likely where you think you'll find them. For instance in my area (SE Virginia) WTKR channel 3 is not on channel 3; its RF is on channel 40! Scanning is also important because the majority of stations "multicast", that is have more than one "subchannels". Assuming your in NC, you'll find your local UNC station has 4 separate subchannels, xx-1 being the main PBS feed, xx-2 UNC Kids (IIRC) and so on.

Steve KC4JGC
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post #8 of 11 Old 02-10-2018, 06:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffnc View Post
I guess I figured it out. The TV required a scan to be completed before it would tune any channels at all. I assumed the scan was just for saving favorites and going to the next channel by skipping empty channels. But it actually had to do a complete scan before it would tune any channel at all. The TV apparently must have the ATSC tuner built-in like you mention.


https://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp?p=FM6
Yep, you have it!

By pressing the channel +/- button you can skip channels that are empty. Most remotes now do have a favorite button or something like that so you can skip channels you're not interested in watching.

BTW, that antenna is supposed to be for the FM broadcast band; if it's working well enough for you stick it!

Steve KC4JGC

Last edited by KC4JGC; 02-10-2018 at 06:31 PM.
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post #9 of 11 Old 02-10-2018, 08:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KC4JGC View Post
NO NO NO! Any TV antenna will work. It's the mode of transmission (digital vs. analog) that's different, not the frequency ranges!

Jeffnc, you need to:
1- make sure the tuner is in digital mode,
2- you need to place the tv in scan mode to find the channels.

#2 is important because the stations you're looking for are not likely where you think you'll find them. For instance in my area (SE Virginia) WTKR channel 3 is not on channel 3; its RF is on channel 40! Scanning is also important because the majority of stations "multicast", that is have more than one "subchannels". Assuming your in NC, you'll find your local UNC station has 4 separate subchannels, xx-1 being the main PBS feed, xx-2 UNC Kids (IIRC) and so on.
I thought it was the quality of what was implied as an 'old antenna' not the actual frequency that was the issue.
https://www.digitaltrends.com/home-t...an-hd-antenna/


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post #10 of 11 Old 02-11-2018, 09:29 AM
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A crusty old 1950's roof antenna is often plenty good enough to pull in a good digital signal if you're not too far away from the broadcast towers.

I'm getting perfect OTA HD reception using the original VHF/UHF roof antenna that the original builder/owner of this house had installed inside the attic when he first built the house way back in 1952 !! He actually ran flat twin-lead antenna wires inside the walls to the living room and the garage during construction (which i have since removed since it wouldn't pass an HD signal back in 2005 when i got my first Plasma). But i simply ran RG6 Coax Cable to that attic antenna with a 75ohm-to-300ohm adapter and was amazed to find i get every digital channel in L.A. on both UHF and VHF (both are used in L.A.). I'm 30 miles from the broadcast towers on Mt Wilson N/E of L.A.

Similarly, i have two different friends in West L.A. in old houses who tried various indoor "HD" antennas with poor results, and when i got wind of it i went over and ran RG6 Coax w/adapter to their old crusty/rusty/long abandoned roof antennas (also dating back to the 50's and 60's) and they also get a perfect OTA signal (35 miles from the towers).


Oddly, some of the current indoor and rooftop "HD" antennas that me and my friends have tried do not pull in all the digital channels - some are fine, but some are badly broken up and others don't come in at all. Back during the big digital transition, some L.A. broadcasters opted to use VHF instead of the planned UHF, and it turns out that some of these so-called "HD" antennas are UHF only, and will not pull in a VHF signal at all so i'd only choose an antenna that is rated for both VHF and UHF.

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post #11 of 11 Old 02-11-2018, 12:48 PM
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You are lucky that the FM-6 has about 4.5 dBi Gain on Ch2-6 and about 5.7-6 dBi on Ch7-13....where it is Bi-Directional [Equal towards Front and Back]....although with Excessive SWR which could be degrading TV Reception.

However, in UHF Band Gain is all over the place, with narrow beamwidth peaks as high as 3-4 dBi towards SOME [Odd-ball] Directions and mostly 0 dBi or Negative Gain in most other Directions....all of which varies by Frequency....but I was surprised to see that SWR was in ballpark of 3-4, which isn't all THAT Bad. Since MOST of your TV Channels are in UHF Band, FM-6 may be preventing reception of SOME of them.....esp. PBS.

By clicking on your name, I can see that you have similar posts in the RAYLEIGH, NC Thread [there is NO WAY I/we can monitor ALL city threads], but we STILL don't know WHERE you are located relative to Towers. You should enter your location into www.tvfool.com and copy/paste the Results Web Address [URL at top of Web Browser] so that we all know what you SHOULD be able to receive and if you let us know what you DO and do NOT receive, then we can provide advice on what more your are likely to be able to receive with a REAL UHF TV Antenna. [BTW: I think that your FOX is on WRAZ, Real Ch49, Virtual 50.x., which has currently gone MISSING from TVFool.]

You should also enter location into www.fmfool.com to see relative signal strengths and direction of FM Stations. Typically if you have nearby Line-Of-Sight (LOS) TV Stations [which you obvious do], then there likely ALSO very strong FM Stations nearby that COULD be causing problems to Ch7-13, for which we MIGHT be able to help you improve reception.

PS: The Magnavox T-26 connected to FM-6 is a very broad band [ALL CATV Freqs...but it's an INDOOR Model] 300-ohm Antenna to 75-ohm Coax "Balun". I highly recommend replacing it with a new OUTDOOR model [Channel Master and Philips have lowest Loss], which has DC interconnection between Antenna Elements and Coax Shield to ensure that Static Electricity on Antenna Elements is drained off to Safety Ground via Coax "GROUND BLOCK" that is SUPPOSED to be used at entry point to house....a MANDATORY requirement of NEC Code that also helps to redirect most of the energy of a Lightning Strike to an appropriate Safety Ground.

Last edited by holl_ands; 02-11-2018 at 01:32 PM.
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