: ATSC Tuners In HDTVs (see Samsung Poll)
2006-01-31, 10:52 PM
Hey folks. What is the easiest and fastest way to HDTV OTA for me? Any suggestions for receivers? ATSC or NTSC (what?)
Also, do I need an antenna on my roof? I know every area is different, but what do you figure my options are? I am in the burbs of Ajax.
P.S. Not likely I can get it setup for Sunday Superbowl?
See also the Digital Home FAQ "Can I get Digital Cable"
2006-01-31, 11:24 PM
Thanks 57 - out of luck for now as you posted there, but hopefully it will catch on in the future here.
2006-02-01, 12:26 AM
If you TV doesn't have a built in ATSC tuner you will need to buy one. Sure you can get it set up before SB - I did mine in a matter of a couple hours last weekend. I mounted it on a 20' mast off my deck since I didn't want to poke holes in the roof. Cost me about $140 total for 75' RG6 cable, UHF antenna, 2x10' masts. My TV has a built in tuner so I didn't have to buy that. With your location you may be out of luck for much OTA reception without a very good antenna. WKBW (SB carrier) may be near impossible from that range, but others can advise further. Here is a map of the local digital broadcasting stations:
You can use indoor or attic mounted antennas, but from what I have read here it will kill half your reception.
I am sure others can give more info, but hope this helps a bit.
2006-02-01, 01:42 PM
Thanx for the info. Bummer. I will look into it a little bit further.
According to the map, I am less than 25 miles (<40 KM) from the CN Tower transmitter. Perhaps it is worth a try. Its a lot of trouble to go through though.
Any advice in terms of what equipment I would need and from where? I have a projector that is HD, but no tuner, no receiver, and no antenna! (yet...lol)
P.S. I have not even checked with the costs for Rogers Digital Cable/HDTV to know the difference, so perhaps I will look into that too.
2006-02-01, 01:47 PM
Thanx for the info. Bummer. I will look into it a little bit further.Have you been through the READ THIS FIRST thread yet?
2006-02-02, 05:01 AM
I have read the ATSC tuner threads, LG, Samsung and other. Often people are referencing models no longer available
Is there a site which compares the currently avialable ATSC tuners in terms of capability, and makes some recommendations?
Ideally I am looking for some sort of comparison table - I find the info here widespread and without systematic comparison on this particular issue, and had intended to buy a new model, rather than Ebay
I will be visiting US (Washington, DC) shortly and had hoped to pick one up, however search of CircuitCity and Bestbuy sites are disappointing, with either a DVR model of LG (LST-3410A) or an unavaialble Samsung
Use would be in North Vancouver (Mt Seymour, potentially very close, altho blocked by slope from direct view) or potentially the Seattle stations, esp if repeaters get going
DVR function not important if firewire, otherwise may be
Any comments on best (currently readily available in US retail) tuner to get?
2006-02-02, 05:46 AM
The lack of ATSC STB comparisons out there seems to be because the demand for them is being clearly overrun by the demand from HDTV manufacturers for internal ATSC boards/chipsets. LG, ATI, and Motorola are shipping those as fast as they can but the demand from Sony, Toshiba, Hitachi, et al keeps growing.
ATSC 6th generation chipsets should show up soon, but even 4th and 5th generation STBs seem to be few and far between these days so I'm sceptical about seeing 6th generation chips in STBs soon.
I hope a high quality STB solution remains on the market for when all those millions of people with analog TVs or "HD Ready" TVs run out of channels and aren't able to upgrade to a full HDTV.
I think if you can get a new LG you'll be doing great. Zenith invented 8VSB (ATSC). LG bought Zenith in 1999 and along with it the patents and stewardship of the ATSC standard. I'm a happy LG ATSC STB owner.
2006-02-02, 09:46 AM
The Consumer Electronics Association has always maintained lists of current products, although the definition of 'current' is always questionable since most of us frequenting this messageboard seem overtly picky ;)
2006-02-02, 12:14 PM
To Stampeder and mr.eous,
Great forum - thanks for informed replies, even if overall message suggests my the ideal STB ATSC does not await
2006-02-02, 01:09 PM
The Consumer Electronics Association has always maintained lists of current products...Great links, and the PDFs are very informative.
2006-02-02, 05:04 PM
A friend from the Washington DC area says these folks are great, but you should check with them first about your requirements:
2006-02-03, 01:08 AM
Thanks for this, will try these Belmont guys
I'm looking for a 26-32" lcd tv.
Should I try to find something with a built-in HDTV tuner or go for an external one?
I've been looking around and it is really difficult to find anything that size with a built in atsc tuner, especially if I want to pick it up locally (Toronto). The price premium seems to be at least $500.
Locating an external ATSC tuner doesn't seem to be all that easy either.
Would I get better reception/quality from a STB or are the built in tuners just as good?
Any recommendations about a 26-32" LCD with a built-in tuner would be appreciated.
2006-02-24, 12:37 PM
To me I would prefer a built in tuner. Just one less piece of equipment and remote to deal with. :)
I can order the Digital stream atsc tuner. New they would sell for $320.00.
I don't have any personal experience with the Digital stream tuners, some had great results and some did not from reading here. You would have to read the review that the other board members have posted here.
2006-02-24, 01:17 PM
Another source is ebay. Some e-stores sell new ATSC tuners with QAM.
If you can get them to mail it to you US Postal Service from the states, your duty should be only GST + PST + $5 Canada Post Fee + Shipping.
I assume that you want the ATSC tuner for picking up OTA signals with an antenna. It's not good for anything else.
The external STBs with ATSC and QAM are very rare and the QAM frequencies are sometimes limited (do not pick up all the QAMs).
The QAM is essentially useless in Canada - see the Digital Home FAQ "Can I get digital cable".
In order to record HD, you will need something external like D-VHS, or an ATSC STB/Recorder (not cheap).
Thanks for all responses.
I need the tuner just for OTA channes. Currently I've got a PCI card (KWorld ATSC110) in my computer that can double as a PVR, so I'm set there, but I'd like to be able to watch tv on something bigger than a 19" monitor.
I pretty much narrowed it down to HP Pavilion LC2600N or LC3200N from hp.ca.
It has a built-in tuner, plenty of input options, and apparently decent quality.
The only thing that bugs me is that HP offers the 26" model for 1399.99 + 100 shipping and in the States one can get it for 850 USD. Quite a difference. The 32" model is sold for 1999.99 online and is available in BestBuy, so I could probably get them to price match it (listed for 2199 there), but that actually is quite a bit above my budget. I just hate the idea of getting a tv shipped. Also hp.ca has 15% restocking fee on all TVs in case I want to exchange it for another unit (stuck pixel etc.).
2006-02-24, 03:41 PM
What's your location, j2K? We can give you better info on what to expect for OTA reception that way.
Also lets take all discussion of HP and their sets to their own forum and keep this one about OTA and ATSC.
I'm in Toronto, west end close to the lake. I actually have pretty good reception. I picked up a 4221 from Yaamon last week, and I'll try to install it this weekend. By walking around with the antenna mounted to some pipe and a notebook I found some good spots for installing the antenna on the wall of my house. The only problem is that I get peek signal for NBC about 10cm from the peek signal for ABC. And of course at those spots the signal from the other station is very weak. I suppose I have to blame a 4 storey building directly south and about 100m away.
Pretty much no matter what I try I loose one station. If I tune for ABC/CBC/NBC i mystically loose PBS which I can pick up with an indoor antenna in my basement :o
Can't wait to actually see some hidef on something bigger than my computer monitor :)
Thanks for tips!