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Old 2003-03-01, 09:44 PM   #1
digitalcable
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
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Lightbulb ON - Kitchener, Waterloo, Guelph, Cambridge, Bruce Peninsula

OTA Results for the Kitchener, Waterloo, Guelph, Cambridge, Bruce Peninsula, and surrounding area. This is an open discussion forum about Results in those areas, but keep your posts on topic.

Last edited by stampeder; 2008-10-19 at 02:17 PM.
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Old 2003-03-01, 10:14 PM   #2
jurassicjockey
 
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Location: Ayr, Ontario
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Default west of Cambridge

I'm out west of Cambridge. I'm 108 miles from the transmitters so I'm at the edge of the reception envelope for Buffalo. I'm kind of surprised that I pick up CITY and CDTV. If I remember the distance is about 50 miles.
I find with the 6000 OTA I get several breakups an hour. In my first couple of days with the Samsung I've noticed a significant reduction in the number of breakups.
WNLO is a part of WIVB's multicasting, along with the doppler. I'm hoping that they drop the WNLO multicast, and give them their own transmitter at some point. It does appear to affect the picture quality on WIVB at times.
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Old 2005-10-22, 12:28 PM   #3
fredf
 
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Default Any OTA DTV from Kitchener, ON? Advice or best guesses?

Anyone in the Kitchener area pulling in OTA DTV signals sucesfully?

Fred
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Old 2005-10-22, 05:24 PM   #4
stampeder
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So far I've only found a post about Cambridge that is very early in the GTA Results thread, so I'll leave this thread standing for awhile and see if we get some info from readers.
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Old 2005-10-22, 08:57 PM   #5
fredf
 
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Thanks for letting the post stand Stampeder. I spent a long time reading through the GTA and Canada results threads before posting. If I remember correctly the poster from Cambridge was able to get WNED which would be nice.

57, I don't think my super is going to let me put that tower on the apartment roof. I should have posted some details I guess. I am on the 3rd floor of a 3 floor walkup and am on good terms with the super, so I could probably attach an antena to the roof if it is not too conspicuous.

Fred
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Old 2005-10-23, 04:01 PM   #6
nfitz
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The elevation in Kitchener is up to 100 metres higher than Cambridge, depending where you are in town, so you might be able to get more. I haven't seen what you can get with digitial, but in Bridgeport, I used to know someone with a tower who could get Buffalo station, including the old WNEQ-23, which later switched from PBS to UPN.

Nick
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Old 2005-10-24, 01:22 PM   #7
mr.eous
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
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Cool Kitchener

I've been experimenting with different antennas and pre-amps for the good part of 2005, and I'm in Kitchener, near the riverbank of the Grand River overlooking Cambridge.
Nothing is 100% consistent, but it's very rare if I can't pull in more than a few DTV stations on any given evening. I have to rotate more northwards, away from Buffalo, if I want to watch Toronto stations.

I have a ViewSonic NextVision HD12 set-top box:
http://www.viewsonic.com/pdf/usergui...2-1_ug_eng.pdf

I have experimented with both a new Channel Master 4228 with 7775 pre-amp and a Winegard PR-9032 with AP-4800 pre-amp, and found that the Winegard gear is better, both in reception and manufacturing quality:
http://www.winegard.com/offair/pdf/pr-9032.pdf

I've even played around with an old 5 or 7 foot parabolic UHF antenna that's on a rusty old 20 foot tower on my grandparents old house, and it's proven surprisingly good for ATSC reception, too.

To further prove that "yes, there is DTV available OTA in Kitchener" I should state that I have around 200 feet of cable between my antenna and receiver, due to some 75 foot tall trees obstructing line-of-sight on half of the property. Granted, I'm using a long piece of hardline aluminum-clad cable TV distribution trunk that I've had kicking around as scrap, as well as some RG11 and a bit of RG6, but that's nothing magic. I tried using RG6 for the full-length but it killed most of my signal -- too much cable loss.
I'm also located close to a Hydro One 115kV transmission corridor, but this seems to have little affect on things.
I suppose I'm lucky in that I'm fairly high on the horizon, at least as far as elevation is concerned... I've had surprisingly good luck playing around with an antenna on a stick only 12 feet off the ground.

One thing I discovered is that these UHF channels seem to require that you have a pre-amp at the antenna, no matter how short the coaxial cable to your tuner may be. I've also noticed that reception of analog UHF channels originating from the same transmitter tower site does not directly corelate with reception of HDTV channels -- for example, sometimes I can be getting relatively poor reception on channel 17 (WNED Buffalo) but channel 43, their digital equivalent, can be perfectly fine. Of course, with digital, you usually either get a perfect signal or no signal -- tiling/breakup only seems to occur when you're right on the borderline signal-to-noise ratio.

I think you basically have to take your chance and buy some equipment and play around with it. There's no definitive "yes" or "no" answer as to what you can and cannot receive, here. I can't speak for older/cheaper (less sensitive) 8VSB receivers... they might not be able to pick up as many channels.

If you want some specific examples, I can almost always get CBS and UPN from Buffalo, since their transmitter is 1,000,000 watts. Sun TV (from Hamilton) is easy to get, too, since they're on a 'low' channel -- 15, so there's less cable loss at that frequency. CBC Toronto comes in easy, and CTV Toronto is a little less reliable. NBC, ABC, FOX, and PBS from Buffalo are all about the same -- hard to get during the day, fairly reliable reception in the late evening. Citytv Toronto is almost impossible to receive -- their antenna is too directional, and "WB49" (DT) is ridiculously low-power, so I've never received that. SRC (CBC French) Toronto comes in the odd time, too.
Once CH (Hamilton) gets their transmitter going, I anticipate that will be easy to receive, too, but I don't know what to think about Global Toronto and OMNI.1/OMNI.2 since they're going to be low-power.
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Old 2005-10-24, 02:39 PM   #8
stampeder
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Default Cm4251???!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mr.eous
I've even played around with an old 5 or 7 foot parabolic UHF antenna that's on a rusty old 20 foot tower on my grandparents old house, and it's proven surprisingly good for ATSC reception, too.
Whoa! Is it one of these: http://www.digitalhomecanada.com/for...4&postcount=21

If its a Channel Master 4251 you have the greatest comsumer UHF antenna ever sold, but its been out of production for quite awhile. That antenna provides the highest UHF gain you can possibly get at your location so you might want to consider replacing your W9032 with it if you have a good enough mast. UHF antennas pick up both NTSC and ATSC so its no surprise that the cliff effect of DTV doesn't seem to happen as bad on it.

If it is a CM4251 and you don't want to keep it, you might want to PM Tigerbangs and I think he'd be interested to hear about it. Actually if there was some way to get that big brute out to the west coast I'd love to add it to my monster antenna collection... but mrs. stampeder would probably freak.

BTW mr.eous, are you related to Mr. E. Guest or Mr. E. Responsible?
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Old 2005-10-24, 06:27 PM   #9
mr.eous
 
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Location: Kitchener, ON
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Talking don't get too excited

Quote:
Originally Posted by stampeder
Whoa! Is it one of these: http://www.digitalhomecanada.com/for...4&postcount=21

If its a Channel Master 4251 you have the greatest comsumer UHF antenna ever sold, but its been out of production for quite awhile. That antenna provides the highest UHF gain you can possibly get at your location so you might want to consider replacing your W9032 with it if you have a good enough mast. UHF antennas pick up both NTSC and ATSC so its no surprise that the cliff effect of DTV doesn't seem to happen as bad on it.
No, I don't immediately suspect it's one of those Channel Master "Para-Scope" parabolic antennas since the actual antenna part doesn't look like the sophisticated bowties in those pictures. Mine's more of a symmetrical squiggly thing, although the reflector assembly looks identical. The other hardware from the old system included a Delta-Benco pre-amp, which was garbage compared to modern ones -- way too much leakage from VHF stations into it. When I removed this, I was also trashing a decrepit VHF all-band antenna, mounted just a bit lower on the mast, that had lost a number of its elements. Who knows, maybe the UHF antenna I have is an old Delhi product, or something these guys used to make.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stampeder
If it is a CM4251 and you don't want to keep it, you might want to PM Tigerbangs and I think he'd be interested to hear about it. Actually if there was some way to get that big brute out to the west coast I'd love to add it to my monster antenna collection... but mrs. stampeder would probably freak.
Sorry, it's not on my list of things to discard
Luckily, I have a lot of trees and other things that keep my property 'shielded' from whiny neighbours who like to complain about eyesores.
If money's no object, then I dare you to get one of these, preferably the dual 8-foot on the last page:
http://www.wade-antenna.com/UHFParabolic.pdf
Actually, I even played around with a 6 foot C-band satellite dish, oriented vertically towards Buffalo, putting a standard UHF 'bowtie' antenna at the focal point -- results weren't all that impressive. As I said before, I like the Winegard 'Prostar' model.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stampeder
BTW mr.eous, are you related to Mr. E. Guest or Mr. E. Responsible?
Heh, nope... no relation. But I hereby claim to be the first person to ever respond to an Internet request about receiving ATSC signals in Kitchener, after dismal response to similar requests @ http://www.cdtv.ca/index.cfm?page=re...FTOKEN=6860506

By the way, just to comment on the subject of this thread, no, there's no DTV from Kitchener, ON
I think CKCO-TV has their antenna up, but haven't even applied to the CRTC for a DTV permit.
Absolutely no sign of any DTV ever becoming a reality at Global's 475 Ayr Road site (also home of a CBC transmission and TVO repeater) or SRC's 1085 Wilby Road, St. Agatha site, either.
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Old 2005-10-24, 08:03 PM   #10
stampeder
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by mr.eous
Who knows, maybe the UHF antenna I have is an old Delhi product, or something these guys used to make.
It was a nice dream while it lasted.
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Old 2005-10-26, 08:07 PM   #11
fredf
 
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Mr. eos, your my hero! After reading through many pages of posts I was not sure I would ger a response. I checked out your hardware and I could do this at a reasonable cost.

Fred
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Old 2006-01-31, 03:24 PM   #12
Bazooka Joe
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Cambridge
Posts: 19
Question Cambridge - Anyone, Anyone

I live in Cambridge, and fortunately not in one of the low lying areas, so I have a hope with OTA HD.

My setup:
HTPC with Avermedia A180 card, running WatchHDTV software.
CM 4221 clone (home made per instructions found here http://www.digitalhomecanada.com/for...ad.php?t=25677)
Antenna mounted in attic without amplifier.


I have been successful in pulling in CBC (english and french channels), but nothing else. My cpu utilization is peaking around 65%. I built the antenna just because I didn't want to invest in the real deal only to find that I would have to mount the antenna outside. The WAF is a problem. I had an omni directional on the roof for about two years and finally had to take it down, before ever thinking about experimenting with OTA HD. So, I am kind of stuck with an attic installation.

I am looking for any others in the K-W/Cambridge/Guelph areas that are pulling in OTA HD. I would like to know what your setup is, and how you have your antennas pointed. I know I am quite far from the transmitters in Toronto and Buffalo.

I know the attic is a problem, but I am thinking that my neighbours 2storey home (mine is a bungalow) which is partially in line with Buffalo is also a problem.

FYI - I had also tried to use a RadioShack 10db amplifier. That made a marginal improvement on the CBC stations, but did not help with anything else.

Any help on how to point the antenna would appreciated as well.

Thanks
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Old 2006-02-06, 04:16 PM   #13
mr.eous
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Kitchener, ON
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bazooka Joe
I am looking for any others in the K-W/Cambridge/Guelph areas that are pulling in OTA HD. I would like to know what your setup is, and how you have your antennas pointed. I know I am quite far from the transmitters in Toronto and Buffalo.
See my post #41.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bazooka Joe
I know the attic is a problem, but I am thinking that my neighbours 2storey home (mine is a bungalow) which is partially in line with Buffalo is also a problem.
You're lucky you're getting any signal whatsoever out of the attic -- we're not as fortunate as people living in Toronto or on the lakeshore, with ample signal to penetrate through structures.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bazooka Joe
FYI - I had also tried to use a RadioShack 10db amplifier. That made a marginal improvement on the CBC stations, but did not help with anything else. Any help on how to point the antenna would appreciated as well.
1. Get rid of the RadioCrap amp -- it'll introduce too much noise which can effectively cancel out the benefit of amplifying any of the signals. You need a pre-amp right at the antenna, preferably a Winegard AP-4800.
2. Get the antenna outside, out of the attic.
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Old 2006-02-06, 04:34 PM   #14
Bazooka Joe
 
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mr. eous,

Thanks for replying.

I did do an experiment last Thursday, mounting the antenna on a pole off of my deck. If you go to this posting, you will see what I got, still using the same 10db Ratshack amp. http://www.digitalhomecanada.com/for...7&postcount=30

On Friday, I ordered a CM7777 from the U.S. I'm hoping this improves the signal for me.

I have a WAF issue, so the antenna is back in the attic. I have moved it to the back of the attic, in about the same area as where the deck is. I can still get CBC, but now I also get 23-1 and 23-3. The signal level is not as strong of course. I have ordered a CM7777 from the U.S. I'm hoping this improves the signal for me. Heck if it doesn't I can always sell it for more than I paid for it, according to the prices I have found locally.
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Old 2006-02-23, 04:11 PM   #15
Bazooka Joe
 
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Location: Cambridge
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Default Cambridge with CM4221 Clone

Reporting in.

Since installing the CM7777, I had a setback with my HTPC, but not before being able to test HD reception with the CM7777.

With my attic mounted, home made CM4221 clone, I was able to pickup:
CBC-HD, WIVB (UPN)HD, SunTV-HD, WNED-HD, and CityHD, along with their SD subchannels.

Some reception signals were better than others. I was experience a lot of stuttering. After some assistance from the HTPC group, I looked into my IRQs, and found that my A180 was sharing the IRQ with the video adapter (not good). I moved the A180 to anothee PCI slot and the stuttering disappeared. Yippee.

My setback. Came back the next morning, and my PC wouldn't boot up past the Windows loading screen. @$%^%%& Turns out a system file is corrupted. My windows install CD won't boot up, so I am resorting to boot disks. Failing this, I have a ghosted imaged that dates back to September. I had done a lot since then, with plenty of opportunities to create a new ghost image that I never took the time to do.
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