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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falcon_77 /forum/post/0


This is what I refer to as the "Low-VHF crutch." Instead of building out an adequate translator system in the US (outside of perhaps Utah), some areas have relied on Low-VHF for areas well beyond "normal" reception range .....


.... The fact that adoption of DTS rules has occurred so late and the fact that 52-69 were auctioned off does not make for an easy problem to solve.

Localized terrain(steep/rugged) blockage is the issue I was addressing, it can even happen well within a stations predicted/noise-limited service contour, not just beyond it. In such cases, UHF signals (or even some cases hi-VHF) often aren't receivable/useable but lo-VHF is. I wouldn't call it a crutch, I would call it an advantage (in these circumstances) for VHF vs. UHF and in some cases VHF-HI.


It's just the way it is. VHF signals, Lo-VHF particularly, due to the longer wavelengths involved have propagation characteristics such that when nearby terrain blockage issues are significant enough, there are cases when Lo-VHF signals are usuable when signals on higher frequencies are not. In these cases, Take away the lo-VHF signals, which is what is going to happen, then those folks are going to lose OTA reception, it's as simple as that.


I don't think stations are likely to build out multiple translators in cases when potentially they will only serve a handful of households with each translator in each "holler".


For those in such circumstances, even for DTV signals, obviously this advantage outweighs the advantages of UHF regarding issues such as various types of interference which effect VHF moreso than UHF, such as impulse noise - Issues which often something can be done about, other than as it pertains to natural cause - nearby lightning strikes, Eskip if the interference is coming from same direction as the desired local signal, and when the desired local signal isn't necessarily a strong one. Of course, the latter is going to be much, much less of an issue for the most part beginning in a couple of months ..... Unless of course your Es pest to local reception is mexican or canadian ....


I do believe the biggest overall, general, problems for VHF DTV(both Hi and Lo) are: #1). Folks trying/wanting to use UHF Only antennas, and retailers selling them "UHF only so called "HDTV" antennas, and #2). folks attempting to use indoor/attic antenna antennas(often near various devices or household applicances, or near A/C wiring which are creating interference issues, especially on lo-VHF) : Receive antenna installations which don't even come close to meeting FCC planning factors for DTV reception.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitewatchman /forum/post/15257692


#2). folks attempting to use indoor/attic antenna antennas(often near various devices or household applicances, or near A/C wiring which are creating interference issues, especially on lo-VHF) : Receive antenna installations which don't even come close to meeting FCC planning factors for DTV reception.

This is certainly a very serious problem with the transition. I have heard that 75% of OTA households are using set-top antennas, which are simply terrible, especially on top of a major noise-source (CRT TV's).


I have my 3 separate band antennas in the attic, with good results. It's far better than set-top (especially for VHF), but still not up to FCC planning factors, which is impossible where I live (I don't own the roof).


Most store bought antennas have minimal VHF capabilities (e.g. rabbit ears stuck onto a UHF antenna) and I have yet to see any rabbit ears long enough for 2-4.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitewatchman /forum/post/15255500


It will certianly stop OTA reception alltogether in Some terrain challenged locations where distant lo-VHF signals get "around" the hills but even nearby UHF signals do not ....


I've seen it first hand in areas around Portsmouth, OH. There are folks in the "hollers" receiving (only) stations like WLWT 5 Cincinnati, WSAZ 3 Huntington from 70+ miles away -- But the UHF Portsmouth(such as WPBO) signals 12 miles away? Forget it if they're blocked by nearby steep terrain ...


The good news is, I think the numbers of these viewers are relatively small ... The bad news is, some of these folks do depend on OTA broadcasts from these stations, including for news and emergency information ... I know I (and neighbors who actually live there) did from WLWT at at friend's cabin near Blue Creek,OH during one weekend and what is known around here as the "flood of 97" ...

This 100% correct! That is the Low Band advantage. It works over hills where UHF does not.


And those who use rabbit ears...Rabbit ears? Pffft! Please...Get a real antenna! Antennas too big? Pffft! Please...You should see my ham antennas!
Low Band works better than any other band.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by SOFA.KING /forum/post/15258476


You should see my ham antennas!

Attached is pic of one of mine -- the 20M reflector is about 30 Feet long or so .... This pic is from when I put it up in 1988, the closest trees(cottonwoods) are at least 25~30 feet taller now --- I used it(mainly enjoyed CW on 10+15 when I was active) had it up for about 12 years - And, someone else used it between late 60's when it was new and then -- I'm currently using the CDE 44 rotor seen in pic with my TV ants, and it's probably even older than the antenna in pic, and probably a bit older than I am for that matter!) --- BTW, you can't tell it from the pic but that is one HEAVY gin pole ...... :
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitewatchman /forum/post/15258759


Attached is pic of one I mine (This pic is from when I put it up in 1988, I used it for about 12 years - And, someone else used it between late 60's when it was new and then -- I'm currently using the CDE 44 rotor seen in pic with my TV ants, and it's even older than the antenna in pic!) --- BTW, you can't tell it from the pic but that is one HEAVY gin pole ...... :

Now THAT is a low band antenna! Very nice. No mamby pamby "low band antennas are to big" whining there!



I moved a couple of years ago and still did not get around to putting my antenna farm back up. It is all in the garage. I have reels of LDF-5 and big sections (100' +) of LDF-7 ready to go. Lots of hardline connectors too. I need to get a bunch of ground rods and put a halo around the house for lightning protection (Florida is bad). When my house was built I put LDF-4 in the walls and a big feedthrough plate on the shack wall next to where I plan on putting the tower. I just need to get myself motivated to just do it.
 

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Came across this in a Google search, thought this thread needed a bump, and Trip, looks like you could be a prophet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trip in VA /forum/post/15256066


I've often thought about maybe having a low-VHF informational analog station in each market wouldn't be a bad move. Air emergency information whenever needed, otherwise air PBS or C-SPAN or something. Or if a local station wants to keep themselves on the air in analog, they could air their own programming.


But I doubt that would fly in any circumstance.


- Trip
 

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I suppose there are more pros than cons as far as the low band VHF, at the same time I cant help but feel something nostagic about those old channel numbers that may be gone someday.
 

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I think that every market that had at least one lo-VHF back in the analog days should be required to have at least one lo-VHF now. Every market that is, except for the digital UHF islands like Huntsville, Ala. and Syracuse, N.Y.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjb2002 /forum/post/18228389

I think that every market that had at least one lo-VHF back in the analog days should be required to have at least one lo-VHF now. Every market that is, except for the digital UHF islands like Huntsville, Ala. and Syracuse, N.Y.

Uh, NO!!!!!


I'm quite happy on my UHF digital island of St Louis. I'm sure that Kansas City, Boston, Milwaukee* (except one of the PBS stations), Salt Lake City, Charlotte*, Dayton, Buffalo, Greensboro, New Orleans*, Omaha, Huntsville, Syracuse, Madison WI, South Bend, Tallahassee, Peoria, and Shreveport residents are all happy to be stranded on the UHF-only island


-----------

* (except one of the two PBS stations serving the market)
 

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Add Ft Smith/Fayetteville, Arkansas to the all UHF list (with the exception of a stupid PBS station left behind in VHF-land and unviewable by many).
 

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I'm bumping a VERY old thread, but I have to ask, why has no one else shown interest in this topic recently? I would have expected spectrum repacking to rekindle some interest in VHF-Lo reception, as some stations found VHF-Lo the only place left to relocate to.

I suspect there are areas with full-power stations bumped back down to VHF-Lo frequencies. So I imagine a lot of folks who gave up their VHF-Lo antennas over the last decade may be wishing they had them back now. But, after a decade of low demand, VHF-Lo antennas have gotten pretty hard to find anymore. Luckily, I still use an all-band Channel Master 3020. I have an old Y5-2-6 too, although the 3020 seems better.

In my area (Dallas) VHF-Lo became a refuge for displaced low-power TV. We currently have two VHF-Lo stations on the air, on RF 3 and RF 5. (So does our neighbor city Ft. Worth, but the RF 5 station is different there) and are expecting one more, with a possibility of a fourth; all low-power.

There's also an analog "FrankenFM" station on RF 6. ATSC 3.0 offers some hope for RF 6 FrankenFM stations to stay alive while converting to digital broadcasting.

What's going on in VHF-Lo in the rest of N. America? Does your city have any interesting stations on VHF-Lo? Is your reception good, or bad due to noise?
 

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I recently bought a New Old Stock (NOS) Winegard HD5030 full-band VHF antenna for the San Francisco bay area repack. A decent PBS station, KRCB, is now on RF 5 VC 22. Most of the other VHF-Lo spectrum has been occupied by a guy peddling infomercials and God TV. There are several major networks on VHF-Hi here, the spectrum is really . . . packed.


I do get the impression that VHF-Hi is filled up first, and VHF-Hi standalone antenna are still available. VHF full band antenna are not, to the best of my knowledge, available in the USA. UHF/VHF full band combos like the Winegard 8200U still exist, although that is the only one I know of. I did not want a combo antenna, instead I've optimized my UHF antennae (two) for the repacked spectrum.
 

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I'm bumping a VERY old thread, but I have to ask, why has no one else shown interest in this topic recently? What's going on in VHF-Lo in the rest of N. America? Does your city have any interesting stations on VHF-Lo? Is your reception good, or bad due to noise?
I didn't know this thread existed. :) At my old location we had some low VHF stations and I received them fine. It was a very low noise location which helped a lot. At my new location there are no low VHF stations. Should anyone want to build a low VHF antenna, I have an 8 element LPDA I built that worked fine. The plans are available for sharing.
 

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VHF full band antenna are not, to the best of my knowledge, available in the USA.
Take a ladder and a couple twenties into any rural area, look for one and knock on the door. :D If they have a dish or an obvious cable connection, odds are better they'll sell you the unused hunk of aluminum. Who knows, they might even pay YOU to take the old antenna down. :)
 

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I'm 20. I don't remember too much!

I've already DXed digital. Got KOTA-DT 2 to decode for a few seconds. 1370 miles or so. I've also seen a carrier for KPXB-DT 5.

Unlike with analogs, digitals just go away when there's interference. WBRA-DT (my local PBS on channel 3) goes away an hour before any observable analog skip. That's how flaky it is.

I love skip as much as the next person, and on analog, I have no issue with it. I just think that the public interest is better served to have no digital signals on low-VHF.
Even 12 years later, I still agree with that. But if you want on the air in a crowded market, VHF-Lo may be your only choice now:
I recently bought a New Old Stock (NOS) Winegard HD5030 full-band VHF antenna for the San Francisco bay area repack. A decent PBS station, KRCB, is now on RF 5 VC 22. Most of the other VHF-Lo spectrum has been occupied by a guy peddling infomercials and God TV. There are several major networks on VHF-Hi here, the spectrum is really . . . packed.
I do get the impression that VHF-Hi is filled up first, and VHF-Hi standalone antenna are still available. VHF full band antenna are not, to the best of my knowledge, available in the USA. UHF/VHF full band combos like the Winegard 8200U still exist, although that is the only one I know of. I did not want a combo antenna, instead I've optimized my UHF antennae (two) for the repacked spectrum.
I think that's basically right. The hierarchy seems to be UHF, VHF-Hi, then RF 5, then the rest of VHF-Lo. But here in Dallas, RF 5 became (Spanish) God TV before anyone was thinking about repacking, so an LPTV with a mix of infomercials and entertainment channels wound up on RF 3. RF 4 went to another displaced LPTV that isn't on the air yet; if/when it lights up, it'll mostly be more Spanish God TV, but in their prior life they were known to air a couple of entertainment channels too, so we'll see.
 

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Take a ladder and a couple twenties into any rural area, look for one and knock on the door. :D If they have a dish or an obvious cable connection, odds are better they'll sell you the unused hunk of aluminum. Who knows, they might even pay YOU to take the old antenna down. :)
That is correct. In my area, Upstate SC was a predominantly VHF market during the analog era. So I still see a number of VHF only antennas, especially in the suburbs and rural areas. Some may still be in use, as they may capture strong UHF signals as well as VHF. And I still see many UHF/VHF combo antennas that resemble Channel Master and Radioshack. We still have ABC, CBS, and PBS on High VHF, and the local religious channel moved from RF16 to RF2, which may now require the larger VHF low antenna. For those folks who have switched to newer antennas, I see mostly Clearstream 4V or 4MAX antennas. For the most part, that captures all the High VHF and of course UHF signals, but the religious channel may now be problematic.
 

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WCYB-TV on RF5 is ~50 miles away from me but I've never been able to receive it in my life.

This kind of statement contains almost no information without knowing what you've tried.


I can receive VHF-Lo stations without any problem from 50 miles away . . . On a Winegard HD5030 full-band VHF without preamp followed by 20' of low-loss RG11 into a UVSJ then a HDHR4-2US tuner.
 
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