: ON - Oakville, Burlington, Milton, Halton - OTA
There is nothing fishy going on from FOX. They now have a more directional transmitter and are sending very little power to the northwest which is your direction,including mine and I'm in Ancaster. For the most part FOX is not to bad for me but I will occasionally experience very severe and quick dropouts but hardly ever. Since they changed their transmitter it has really screwed with the reception in the northwest quadrant.
Thanks for shedding the light on this, BLT. As I said, in my case, Fox reception goes from extremely good to none at all. The frustrating thing is that when it's gone, it may be gone for hours. I wonder if there is any way around it?
2009-08-27, 08:00 PM
Just a quick follow up.
I installed a CM 7778 today. Unfortunately the result was bizarre.
My lower power signals either stayed the same or like in the case of fox droped lower. I expected my higher power stations to show as lower but some like cbc and abc stayed the same while nbc and cbs dropped down. I have removed the amp.
Also on a seperate note when I had everything back to its original state I noticed I had lost CITY TV. this ended up being due to the balun wires. I moved them a little trying to keep the spacing as equal as posible, though I'm not realy sure if they should be closer together or farther apart. as of right now they are in the form of a V from the terminals back to the balun and my CITY TV signal has returned.
2009-08-29, 03:09 PM
With an old yagi antenna, rotor and DTV converter box, I receive all of the Canadian stations and Fox/PBS. I don't receive ABC, CBS or NBC. The only obstructions I have are a couple of big trees to the south; I'm not sure if they are in the path of the signal. Would I need a CM4228HD to receive the major US networks?
I was also wondering if it's better to replace the yagi, or mount a CM4228HD above the yagi and use a combiner to combine the signals.
Finally, I was looking for a store that accepts returns so I could test an antenna and return it if it does not help me. Is there such a store in the Burlington or surrounding area?
Thanks from West Burlington.
Greetings from Burlington ON (Dundas & Walker's Line),
I have been reading this forum for a while and in spite of the expertise and knowledge available here I have only succeeded in becoming even more confused than when I started. Being completely non-handy and non-technical has exacerbated this.
My problem is that though I am very keen on going OTA and moving out of the clutches of Cogeco (at least as far as TV goes), I live in a Condominium-Townhouse and our rules forbid outdoor antennae and dishes. So, cable is our only option, unless we use internal OTA antennae.
This being the case (and considering I am the world's worst handyman), I am looking for suggestions on how I can go OTA.
What antennae could I consider that could basically sit next to my TV (I probably am asking for too much) etc.
If my only option is to go for an antenna that goes into my attic, how would I run the cable from there to my TVs (one in the upstairs bedroom, the HDTV in the gound-floor living room and the normal TV in the basement) etc.
Also, if I have to run any cable anywhere, I would like to know who I can get to do this for me etc.
Sorry to be so ignorant.
Also, I downloaded the latest antennae recommendation chart, but am having trouble understanding it because in order to know how far I am, I have to know where from!
I would welcome any pointers or suggestions (other than RTFM since I already did it and am still ignorant) whenever any of you has a few minutes to spare.
Thanks and cheers
2009-09-03, 03:14 PM
I do not have much experience with indoor antennas but I know some are okay, but most you find at the big box stores aren't very good. When I tested how HD signals are in my area with a Future Shop indoor powered antenna, you will either only get some CN tower channels or a few Buffalo channels. Do you have access to your attic? I put my outdoor antenna there since my smarter half did not want an antenna sticking out over my roof. To do this, couple of questions, do you have existing coax in your 2nd story townhouse? If yes, how close is it to closet/attic access? Luckily, my cable man has a coax running out of a room closet so I just drilled a hole in the ceiling and fished a line up there. Otherwise, I would hire someone (sorry don't know any) since they know how to fish those things without any damage to your drywall. In terms of installing an antenna in your attic, I just used strings to hold it up in the rafters using simple eyelet screws before permanently mounting it this summer with a proper pole and 2x4 setup. You don't need to be a handyman to try the string method....just patience to pull the strings so that your antenna is at the right angle.
2009-09-03, 03:29 PM
tilt, also see Post #10 in the OTA FAQ for instructions on generating your own personal TVFool report. It will give you excellent details on distances so that you can compare your situation with the previous posters in this thread.
I have been scolded for getting off-topic in this thread, so this will be my last post in this thread here. With due apologies to the moderators, after this reply I shall attempt to find a more suitable thread to post any further questions.
To Parity123, thank you for your response. Here are my answers:
Access to attic: There is a small man-hole in the ceiling of my small walk-in closet in the master bedroom but I am too fat to fit into it and am sure to literally bring the house down if I force myself through and manage to actually get into the attic.
Do I have existing coax in my 2nd storey: You may as well be speaking Greek and Hebrew. My cable comes into my basement and there are splitters there to split to the basement, ground-floor and bedroom floor. That's all the information I can give you. I have a TV in my upstairs bedroom. Does that mean I have coax? (I warned you - the only thing I know about electronics or Electrical or Mechanical stuff is how to use and break them, not how they work)
To Stampeder: Thank you for the links to post 10. I read it, got my lat-long, posted it in the TVFOOL website, and got something that I cannot make head or tail of. I don't see anything related to distances at all. I see a chart with Green, Yellow and Red and a lot of station call signs. Unfortunately I only know the names of the stations, not the call-signs. I bookmarked the TVFOOL URL though.
The sad part of all this is that I belong to the PAG school (Pay A Guy) because the only things I understand are computers and cooking and nothing else. As for everything else, I can use them and use them well, but that's about it. So I pay a guy to fix it if I can afford it or else I live with it.
Sorry, thank you both, apologies to whoever scolded me in a PM, and cheers.
2009-09-05, 09:34 AM
I have been scolded for getting off-topic in this thread
tilt, I don't see anyone scolding! The only comment was stampeder helping you create your tvfool report. Instead of complaining about nothing, you may wish to be a little appreciative.
2009-09-11, 02:56 PM
Since you have splitters that go from the basement to the second floor, you can reverse it so that an antenna in the second floor goes to your basement and main floor. For awhile until I got off my lazy bum to put my antenna in the attic, it was sitting in closet that was conveniently facing the right way. You could try that. What you'll need to do is turn the splitter around so that the wire going to the second floor goes into the In side of the splitter with the basement and first floor wires in the Out. Do NOT hook up the cable from outside into the splitter. This will cause your signal to drop as cable and antenna use the same frequencies.
Hi I'm new here, so please forgive any inadvertent slip-ups. I've spent many late-night hours poring over the various threads on here and it's been very informative and helpful. However, still a big question I have seems unanswered.
FIrst background - I'm tired of paying the ridiculously high fees to Cogeco cable, especially when I hardly watch TV. Bell TV seemed better priced, so I have an install with them booked for a week or so. But then I stumbled upon all this OTA info and started thinking this may be even better option. However, the kids and spouse in the house will give me more grief than I really want if we lose the main networks or, and this is key, they aren't reliably received.
I've noticed on here that with the right antenna (CM 4221HD apparently) I should be able to receive the big Cdn (from CN Tower) and US (from Buffalo) network channels in glorious HD. Many posters boast of being able to get others from further afield. I seem to detect that there are a lot of people into this as a fun hobby, where attaining a distant signal, even for just a few hours, is a goal. But while not dismissing that at all, what's important to me is that if I do away without the digital suppliers (CATV, Sat), is that I can reliably receive them. If the teens or wife have TIVO set to record their favourite show on NBC at 8pm, but there's a drop-out then, I'm sure to hear about it. The weather is the big variable I gather - somewhere I read that fog is a big problem. Well fog is a pretty rare occurence around here, especially in prime time, so I think I can live with that risk. But what about rain? Snow? Cold? Thunderstorms?
Please advise what normal, on-going reception can be expected, rather than those best-reception day experiences. Also, as I'm going to plan to split signal over at least three tv's I understand that will likely impact my results.
Perhaps I'm best to experiment with OTA along with the Bell TV install? Then if all goes well I can just ditch Bell when the 2 yr contract is up.
Thanks for all your help!
p.s. I'm in a house in Dundas/Neyagawa area of Oakville, ON
2009-09-12, 02:14 PM
Your idea to go with Bell and play with OTA at the same time is probably the way to go in your case. I'm down in Bronte and I get a lot of stations OTA. Some of the weaker transmitters like SunTV and Global off the CN Tower are problematic, but their analog counterparts are still watchable. We've been OTA for 15 years or so now, used to be just a set of rabbit ears on top of the TV. I put a Grey-Hoverman up on the side of the house facing Buffalo, and we get NBC, ABC, CBS, PBS, ThinkBright, CW, Fox, CBC, CHCH, and MyTV(49) off that one. There is the odd dropout, which can be aggravating at times. But you get to watch the Superbowl and see the commercials from the US feed in HD instead of watching them later on YouTube :^)
Go for it, whip up an antenna and see what you get. Oh, and if you need some Unobtainium (fibreglass rods) let me know, I have a few left.
Thanks again Parity123. This is good information. I am saving all this to use as instructions for whomever I get to actually implement this.
I am a few blocks west of you at 3rd line between dundas and uppermiddle. I have a CM4221 sitting on my 2nd floor window sill facing buffalo. I get all the buffalo stations reliably except the religious network one. I get a few stations from Toronto but am missing a few as well. If the antenna was outside the results would be better. If the antenna was on the roof I'm sure the results would be even better. If I turn the antenna towards Toronto I get them all but lose a few Buffalo stations. So for me I like it maximizing the buffalo stations.
If you are planning on splitting the signal depending on the lenght of cable you will probably need an amplifier. I have mine split 4 ways and have a CM7777 which works very well.
Thank you Q. I think I shall begin with trying what you have done and see what happens. This can be my starting point. Then slowly I can start putting into lace the other suggestions given by Parity123 and Stampeder.
Your idea to go with Bell and play with OTA at the same time is probably the way to go in your case.
There is the odd dropout, which can be aggravating at times. But you get to watch the Superbowl and see the commercials from the US feed in HD instead of watching them later on YouTube :^)
Go for it, whip up an antenna and see what you get. Oh, and if you need some Unobtainium (fibreglass rods) let me know, I have a few left.
Thanks for the info galoot.
I think you're right about combining Bell and OTA for a while. My kids are going to go through withdrawal for a bit from more channels on cable, so don't want to go whole hog right away. But I think I'll have Bell on just a couple of TV's and feed the OTA signal to the two univ aged kids' rooms so they can get used to it. I look forward to going exclusively OTA in a couple years (when hopefully will have fewer kids still around ;) )
I did pick up a CM 4221 yesterday and stuck it on a 1X2 X 8' just to test reception in the approximate area at SE corner of house where I plan to mount it. Was pleased to see that when angled between CN Twr and Buffalo I was able to get all the key US digital stations (even WGRZ and WUTV) along with the key CDN channels. I was most surprised to also pull in Channel 11 Hamilton, since it would be behind the antenna. (I think I'm very fortunate the way my house is positioned) All this while I'm holding the 1X2 with antenna over my head, and my wife checks out the channels inside. Quite a sight I must have been! Good thing it's the back of the house. (I first tried it attached to deck rail, but the greater height when I was holding it over my head made a big difference in pulling in a few more channels).
So I'm pretty optimistic for results when properly mounted just under the eaves (don't like the idea of mounting it on roof). This was also with 60 feet of cable so I think I'll be able to get away without a pre-amp and second antenna and just an amplified splitter where it enters the house. Must wait for later this week though.
Thanks for your kind offer. Excuse my ignorance but what's the fibre glass rods for? (I obviously haven't read far enough through the forum yet)
2009-09-14, 05:07 PM
I have a friend in Georgetown that wants to set this up.
Short of reading though all the posts, is the optimal configuration like Hamilton due to the separation of the CN Tower and the Buffalo stations from your viewpoint?
That is, what I am currently doing... 2 CM4221HDs ganged with a preamp? And which preamp are you guys using?
2009-09-15, 04:37 PM
HI Ancaster. Georgetown has a pretty decent angle so you might be able to get away with 1 CM4221HD like I do. In fact I think their angle is better than Oakville and Georgetown is higher ground. Not 100% reliable as City is the only one that rarely drops. Could be due to an attic installation. I have a CM7777 preamp to split to 2 TVs. I get all the channels Buffalo, Hammer, TO.
2009-09-21, 11:17 AM
Hi everyone, I just moved into the neighbourhood and I am wondering how well a CM4221HD would work in this area. Is there anyone living around here using this antenna? Which channels do you get? Would a CM4228HD work any better? The guy trying to sell me the antenna is telling me the 4228 is a lot better but I think he just wants the extra $50 that it costs. Any suggestions or help is appreciated. Thanks!
2009-09-23, 05:00 PM
I have a CM 4221 aimed at Buffalo with great results (2 months)
I just bought my second Cm 4221 for Cn Tower channels.
Having no success in picking any recption from the Tower.
Its only 29 miles away I thouhgt I wouldn't have any problems picking up CBC,CTV, Global, City TV .
Any Ideas? Thanks...