: ON/MI - Windsor, Detroit, Sarnia, Leamington, Chatham - OTA
2009-10-14, 09:55 PM
I have a CM 7775 UHF preamp and am in the same general area of RingtailedFox. When I use the amp, I drop FOX Detroit but all other Detroit stations (sans ION) kicks up to a point where there are pretty much never drop outs. Without the preamp, I can pull all the stations but once in a while CBS, NBC or CW will drop for a brief second. CW more-so than NBC and CBS.
Unfortunately for me, I am on the east side of my building, so I can't point to the southwest without going through my building, not ideal even with my original CM 4228.
Unless someone knows of somewhere to pickup OTA equipment in Windsor, odds are i am going over to The Source to get a crappy booster to see if I can find something in the middle, to let me keep FOX yet pull in the other Detroit stations with a bit more of a boost.
I wish though I could pull the Lansing or Toledo stations in.
Also worth a note, I use the CM 4228 inside my apartment mostly from my lack of ability to mount it out on my balcony (and if someone wants to make a quick buck and knows how, PM me and we can arrange for something). When I had it outside, I was able to pull ION with the preamp, but I wasn't able to get a stable signal on many of the other Detroit stations and I don't have a rotor.
2009-10-15, 04:25 AM
Since you can now get WNWO, hows the signal reliability where you are? Where I am it's more strange. I tried directly from the roof antenna through 80 ft of coax to the tuner and it was barely there and pixelating. (*Tried this in mid Aug, could have been slight ehnancement)
I then re-attached the preamp and it was much stronger >60% but then from time to time it has some occasional annoying glitches here and there even with moderate-good signal. I suspect the preamp is amplifying all noise and interference in the area (esp Lightning) and it's just too much for the very weak WNWO/WUPW digital channels. Most times lately I can get WNWO but WUPW is exceptionally weaker and more intermittent.
It hard to explain but i can actually see what is causing me problems when I tune to WDWO-CA 18 analog from Dearborn/Detroit. The channel is so weak and snowy I can still watch it but there is a sharp attack of sparkes/interference when appliances turn on and such. Same for when a noisy RF throwing tractor or car is in the area. I can't get ch18 analog at all without a preamp. Same for all of the Toledo digital uhf's.
***For those who can get the Toledo channels (esp VHF's) I would love to know how often you might see dropouts/pixelation from man made sources (arcing, appliances turning on and off, etc) while watching. Windsor and most of the county has LOS but I do not and would like to know if that overcomes local area noise more so than here.
PS. There is also Gray's Radio & T.V. Service on Jos Janisse Ave. in Windsor that does installs and has OTA equipment apparently. My buddy had them climb his tower down by the lake and install a new antenna,preamp,coax, etc in Aug.
2009-10-15, 09:15 AM
Gray's is still around? If I remember they used to be on Wyandotte near Pillette.
An original 4228 should receive channels 7-13 without any issues. Certainly much better than a 4221. I'm not familiar with the 7775 pre-amp. I wonder if there's a VHF trap in it? If you could get ahold of a CM7777 or 7778 that may help because those are VHF/UHF amps.
As far as balcony mounting is concerned, if you get a patio umbrella base, fill it with something heavy (water or sand) and mount the 4228 on a 1.5" OD pipe stuck in the base you'd be good to go.
2009-10-15, 11:17 PM
Reliablility of WNWO is pretty good. From Toledo I get these channels in order of strongest to weakest: WTOL, WTVG, WGTE, WNWO. If I point my combo antenna right at Toledo, all 4 come in with 60% and up and i see no dropouts whatsoever. I'm in a good area in east windsor, its a new subdivision area with no trees or obstructions around. I have only had the antenna on the roof a few days now, and have seen WUPW only once and it was a flicker here and there, nothing solid.
Where I am, I do not have LOS with anything in Toldedo. i'm 50-52 miles from all the transmitters, my LOS is only Detroit locals. When it comes to VHF I find the signals are easily distracted by the things you mentioned... a vaccum cleaner, blender, other high power appliances. Also I notice sometimes the 2 Toledo VHFs (11, 13) will not stay solid when I have 30-40% signal, (if I am pointed elsewhere) whereas any UHF channel will usually give me a solid picture with only 10% signal.... (1 signal meter bar on my Samsung plasma)
It seems VHF signals can carry further, but aren't as reliable as UHF from what i'm seeing and reading.
2009-10-16, 09:57 AM
looks like the TV Times (TV Guide Listings) for the Windsor-Essex area are being updated starting tomorrow... the Windsor Star says they've recieved permission to list all of the digital channels on 2, 4, 7, 20, 38, and 13 from Toledo... though i doubt 31 will be listed, at least for a while. I'm also very sure that this means we'll no longer see the Cleveland locals (3, 5, 8, 43) in the guide, with the new detroit/toledo digitals taking their place.
As for WUPW not coming in.. it's on 46, right next to WDIV-DT (and soon to be next to W66BV-D on 47)... perhaps WDIV-DT is killing it/overpowering it?
from where i am located, WUPW-DT is:
WUPW-DT 46 (36.1)
Max ERP: 110.000 kW
Eff. pwr: 7.925 kW
Dist: 49.3 mi Path: 1Edge
Rx: -89.1 dBm NM: 1.9 dB
Az: 204.0° (true)
Az: 211.3° (compass)
This doesn't bode well for reception, particularly since they have a slight null to the northeast...at least, from what i see at TVfool.com
2009-10-16, 09:52 PM
As for WUPW not coming in.. it's on 46, right next to WDIV-DT (and soon to be next to W66BV-D on 47)... perhaps WDIV-DT is killing it/overpowering it?This makes sense since there can be interference from non co-located towers on adjacent frequencies. From the various places I have been reading is that people in Ann Arbor, downriver Detroit can pick up FOX from Toledo quite well so i guess it's the null that's the biggest issue around here.
WUPW also applied to go from 110kW to 200kW with the same antenna pattern in Aug 2008 but it was never granted as of yet.
2009-10-17, 12:32 AM
This makes sense since there can be interference from non co-located towers on adjacent frequencies. From the various places I have been reading is that people in Ann Arbor, downriver Detroit can pick up FOX from Toledo quite well so i guess it's the null that's the biggest issue around here.
WUPW also applied to go from 110kW to 200kW with the same antenna pattern in Aug 2008 but it was never granted as of yet.
Guys I'm almost 100% positive that there is no "bleeding" that happens with digital TV.
With analog stations it is quite normal to see perhaps 22 appear very faintly when tuning to channel 23. This also happens with old manual tuning radios, same deal... you turn the knob until the station gets clearer and clearer.
With digital stations, your tv's ATSC tuner knows that channel 46 UHF where WUPW resides, transmits at 662-668 mhz. Digital transmissions on seperate channels do not bleed over to the next range of frequencies, where say channel 47 is from 668-674. At least thats what i've read.... i've only seen channel bleeding on analog signals.
2009-10-17, 12:47 AM
As for WUPW not coming in.. it's on 46, right next to WDIV-DT (and soon to be next to W66BV-D on 47)... perhaps WDIV-DT is killing it/overpowering it?The ATSC standard was designed to prevent the old analogue problems of ACI (Adjacent Channel Interference) and CCI (Co-Channel Interference), so unless there is a Canadian analogue station causing the problem there is no merit to claims that one channel is "bleeding" into another. A perfect example of this is the presence of KOMO-DT on 38 and KIRO-DT on 39 in Seattle/Tacoma. They have zero effect upon each other's signal.
On the other hand, the idea of one ATSC station on the same channel overpowering another is very real, and was planned from the beginning. ATSC was designed so that a cluster of urban antennas all pumping out the same signal on the same channel at the same ERP will result in blanket coverage without CCI. This is similar to how a cellular phone network operates, and is the principle by which the ATSC Mobile Standard will also operate.
In a nutshell, it means that a mothership station on Channel 31 could have a large number of low power repeaters on Channel 31 in areas of poor signal. I wish mainstream ATSC stations would do that today, but as I say the ATSC Mobile stations of the future will routinely use such systems.
2009-10-17, 01:28 AM
Thats basically what I meant.... thanks for your expertise mr Stampeder!
If you look at Detroit locals, there is a whole whack of them in the UHF-40s, and none of them interfere with each other.... basically proving this theory.
2009-10-17, 03:36 AM
I even see CHWI 16 bleeding all the way into WDWO 18! if you can believe it. Happens most on NTSC tuners that are pre-2005 though.
Those two Seatac stations are both located very close to each other like here for the Detroit locals and I have learned in the past that this is done to prevent interference, but there could be interference problems if they were more like 25-30 miles apart. Example: WDIV Detroit (872kw) uses ch 45 and WUPW Toledo (110kw) uses 46 so WUPW must null to protect?
I have a quirk here:
WEWS on 15 suffers from a strange 'artificial signal' issue where it's still easily strong enough on the signal meter but continues to pixelate at times and has dropouts while WUAB on 28 transmitting from the same antenna farm is a downright rock in comparison. Is it likely CHWI (16) is the reason for this? This happens with or without using the preamp. TVO CICO-32 does this exact thing to WPXD on 31 when I get it occasionally. The signal is good but it pixellates like crazy even when there is zero multipath with dead calm air.
If CHWI converts to digital this will totally go away in terms 'signal bleed' interference with WEWS (15)? I know my preamp could be swamped from ch 16 analog and cause a slew of other hidden weird issues like waveform clipping, etc.. but no other channel is remotely that bad.
I did a test and noticed that when CHWI-16 is at a black screen or dark scene WEWS stabilizes but when bright commercials come on with fast/rapid screen changes, WEWS signal drops and it starts to pixellate a bit.
Then again when an adjacent analog/digital channel in your local area is much much stronger than the target distant channel the AGC circuit might not cope well with both channels simultaneously and then the weaker channel gets lost in the noise. ATSC chipset quality has come a long way but there are those isolated cases still.
If one is trying to pull in a digital 0 NM or less station like RingtailedFox is from 50 miles away in an area where a strong adjacent digital channel (60dB+ NM) is within 20 miles, could the local station be a contributing factor in making the distant one more difficult to receive in any way? (even with no amplification at all)
2009-10-17, 12:54 PM
ahh, you guys are talking about Single Frequency Networks, and the FCC-approved version, the Distributed Transmission System (DTx). ATSC technically wasn't even DESIGNED for Single Frequency Networks, but if the transmitters are kept very closely synchronized (within 13 ms or so), and broadcast the same signal, it works.
and i was right regarding the TV Guide... RIP: WKYC 3, WEWS 5, WJW 8, WNWO 24, and WGTE 30. Newcomers are 4.2, 7.2, 13.2, 38.2, and 56.2.
Phil81: that's what i was thinking. i always thought that digital signals "know" to broadcast within a specified 6MHz range (channel), but as distance and interference go on, the signals may be distorted and gradually lose their modulation or ability to stay within the 6 MHz range...
2009-10-17, 01:00 PM
could the local station be a contributing factor in making the distant one more difficult to receive in any way?It would take some detective work to verify such a problem: several detailed signal analyzer readings would be needed to determine if this is happening
a read through the 2 stations' FCC applications would be necessary since they contain detailed engineering assessments of all anticipated effects on the other stations in the area
if their predictions are not matched by actual performance it is possible to launch an immediate FCC investigation provided that your evidence is clear and compelling, BUT...
rather than contact the FCC it is always best to provide all the details to the broadcasting engineers at both/all stations involved since they will usually start the FCC process themselvesSo, my answer is that while it shouldn't be happening it may very well be due to issues outside the ATSC Standard, and if so should be reported asap.
Good signal analyzers are quite expensive so I doubt some of you can do the above, but you could email the engineering staff of both stations with your findings. Invite them to this thread too!
2009-10-17, 05:10 PM
i was right regarding the TV Guide... RIP: WKYC 3, WEWS 5, WJW 8, WNWO 24, and WGTE 30. Newcomers are 4.2, 7.2, 13.2, 38.2, and 56.2.Just use TitanTV.com, pretty cool site for customizing your own tv guide... I started with all the local detroit OTA stations then added all the other surrounding stations that i'm receiving.... its a pretty cool site, even has canadian stations. I have a tv guide that is a mix of OTA and cable stations that I watch.
Its not a nice paper copy like your tvguide but it works.
2009-10-17, 05:18 PM
I was messing around with the rotor last night scanning around... and I managed to get my first glimpse of Cleveland locals! I only got a partial lock on WEWS-DT 5.1 ABC, and WKYC-DT 3.1 NBC.
Both were pixelating and i manged to get maybe 30 seconds at the longest once of solid picture on WEWS. According to my TVfool, both channles are 90 miles away. WEWS is -9.5 NM(DB) and WKYC is an astounding -19.2.
WJW is supposed to be the strongest clevleand local for me at -9.5, but because it is on VHF 8 all I get is bleeding from CBC on VHF 9, similar to what you guys were talking about with other channels.
I'm wondering if I had a stronger amp, one that kicked out 30db of gain if I'd have a chance of getting a few of these locals more solid... Either way its nice to know they are reachable from time to time.
2009-10-17, 07:06 PM
the Cleveland locals will NEVER be peremanent residents in Windsor and much of Essex County, but they will be "summer visitors" during tropo skip events. They're just too far out, and have to deal with interference. Even during their prime, in the 1970s, they were very difficult to pull in for people in Forest Glade and South Windsor, requiring large yagi antennas. It was generally not worth the hassle, since the Toledo locals are so much closer. People in Tilbury, Leamington and Kingsville *might* have them as semi-regular residents, but Windsor's just too far for any reliable reception.
During the 2003 blackout, WJW-TV came in BOOMING loud and clear, but i think this was from WXYZ-TV 7 and CBET-TV 9 being knocked off-air (WXYZ had just enough backup power to run its transmitter and newsroom, but looked like it was coming in from lansing with a very low ERP!), while CBET just kept its transmitter off and waited for the power grids to stabilize before returning to the air.
the most-likely visitor will be WEWS-DT 15, as it's omnidirectional, and the most-powerful cleveland local. WKYC has a muffler on its north side to prevent its signal from leaking over into Ontario (stupid CRTC...).
During the Summer of Skip this year, i was logging all kinds of Cleveland analog locals (and even WEWS-DT, my farthest digital DX to date!) before the transition to digital, though, and my antenna's facing northwest, not southeast!... the lake does help, but once they reach shore, they have a 100-foot high hill (Mount Ruthven) near leamington to deal with, and by the time they reach Essex, they're too weak to keep going.
While you *can* get a signal with a low or even NEGATIVE dB number, it'll pixellate badly and constantly drop out, so it's best to keep a "buffer" of at least 10 dB for random dropouts like wind, cars driving by, and so on.
I'm quite surprised you were able to recieve these so late in the year... sort of like one last "hurrah" for the DXing season before winter arrives! :D
Perhaps this is a record for "latest DXing activity"? we already have "farthest DXing" record (Phil81 pulled in KWQC from Dubuque, Iowa and the Quad Cities at 404 miles)...
2009-10-17, 10:43 PM
I so miss my WEWS morning news. The anchor lady was very nice to the eyes.
I am still pulling in some of the Erie's @ 90 miles or so here in London.
still loving my DB8....
2009-10-18, 01:29 AM
I'm seeing the same thing tonight.... WKYC is flickering in and out at -19.2 db accroding to my tvfool. :) No sign tonight of WEWS.
Anyone notcied today WTOL from Toledo is operating on 11-3, 11-4 instead of 1&2? I lost this station late last night and this morning this is what my tuner is picking up...
How do you find the long range reception of your DB8? Sounds pretty good... are those stations solid from Erie at 90 miles away? How is VHF reception on it? I always thought bowtie designs were primarly for UHF reception. Wondering what is the best type of antenna for fringe signals, i suppose it depends on the area.
That is absolutely nuts that Phil81 picked up an Iowa station 404 miles away... omg. how long did it stay around for? crazy.
1:45 am - Receiving WLNS-DT after doing a scan... 79 miles away! The channel is solid, 50% signal with no flickering on UHF 36. Wow....
2:30 am - Receiving WUPW-DT from Toledo for the first time ever.... only 20% signal but this the best i have seen it so far. Good night for OTA here!
2009-10-18, 01:36 PM
WLNS tends to be the "easiest" of the Lansing signals to float in, as many people in the Leamington area have reported it coming in with "even the slightest of tropo skip". Its analog (and digital) signals do reach to the american shore of the detroit river, so this isn't too surprising.
glad you could finally get a lock on Fox Toledo!
2009-10-18, 05:07 PM
My guess is that you may be having a problem with Fox 2 Detroit because it broadcasts on VHF channel 7. The CM-4228 is a UHF antenna and you are using a UHF amp.
Haven't had a chance to post but here is what I came up with to solve my problem.
Since the original CM 4228 does BOTH VHF Hi and UHF it was working for both but with some problems. The problem with the CM 7778 amp is that it turns out being UHF only. SO, I ran a simple splitter for the cable off the antenna. One line went into the CM 7778 amp and the other line didn't. I then merged them back together with another splitter in reverse order and into the TV... tada! VHF now bypasses the amp and gives me a top notch signal and the UHF is getting the boost it needs from the amp to now be stable on all channels..
Since i am stuck on the east side of my building, when I have a chance I am going to try to peak for ION and then see if the other UHF stations stay... maybe I can get lucky going to the southeast with Clevelnad although it is doubtful... I will keep you informed...
2009-10-18, 05:09 PM
Thanks for the expertise stampeder.. hopefully any issues that may exist now will be further reduced as advancements in digital TV continue.
Yep it wouldn't be a surprise that WEWS,WKYC were seen. Must have been some tiny enhancement going on, but I didn't notice any here at all. It's sad because I haven't seen WKYC in a long time now. WEWS is far easier to pull in and I can see it every day as long as the conditions are not bad. In the middle of summer you may have a couple Cleveland stations at night to enjoy. I only get 3-4 weak stations from there...unless there is extreme wild tropo.
1. WEWS-DT ABC (mod-good/a bit jumpy ~5 bars) 68.2 miles
2. WKYC-DT NBC (ext weak near losing lock 1-2 bars) 68.6 miles
3. WJW-DT FOX (weak/jumpy 3-4 bars) 68.8 miles
4. WUAB-DT MyNet (barely lockable 1-2 bars) 67.8 miles
WBNX-DT CW (Never seen station / only 3 times in heavy tropo since Jun 12) 68.5 miles
WOIO-DT CBS (ERP to low and nulled / VERY rare even with tropo) 68.3 miles
WVPX-DT ION Akron (tropo only) 89.1 miles
WVIZ-DT PBS (After Jun 12 VERY rare to never due to severe null) 68.6 miles
WQHS-DT Univision (Not possible due to CFTV34 totally blocking it) 68.3 miles
If you were to use a even higher gain amp I would be fearful of possible moderate overloading from the very strong multiple Detroit locals that are likely in excess of -30 Pwr dBm strength up there. (most high gain preamps hate anything stronger than -33 dBm in many cases) I think CBET is even strong enough to cause me problems with WJW 8. Strength for it is like 30% and flakey somewhat since they switched over on Jun 12.
Anyone notcied today WTOL from Toledo is operating on 11-3, 11-4 instead of 1&2? I lost this station late last night and this morning this is what my tuner is picking up... WTOL goes off air from around 205-215am (varies) on weekends, and returns at around 530 or 6am. I noticed messed up PSIP data from them to on Sat evening. It was still like that early this morning before they went off the air. Haven't checked yet today if it's fixed yet..
As for KWQC Davenport, it only lasted mere minutes before WLNS remapped and replaced over it. I wish could of had a couple more of those super long distance DX stations before the end of the tropo season. Oh well.
PanaMark is lucky and is blessed with real good elevation there in north London. (in excess 270m?) At least he has something to watch/play with when Cleveland is lost.