Cutting Cable TV Experiment - Page 2 - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
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post #16 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-19, 03:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slyboy
can you describe more of what you did with the Windows 7 HTPC to use it for your TV viewing purposes?
The two applications that my HTPC regularly runs are: Windows Media Center and Kylo. Before I found Kylo I was using Chrome as a HTPC browser since it's scaling options work reasonably well. I also have the Windows UI scaled by 125%.k

For a TV Tuner I'm using a dual-tuner HD HomeRun (from Silicondust).

I use VyprVPN to get past the GeoIP filtering done by Hulu, BBC, etc.
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post #17 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-19, 09:12 PM
 
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Another thing you guys can do I recently discovered on my Boxee Box is the Navi-X app, it gives you tons of content but the movies (current & classic's) you can watch are pretty sweet. Oh and they are all free. On a PC you have 2 choices to add it, one is XBMC and the other is Boxee.
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post #18 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 04:32 PM Thread Starter
 
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I've been reading up on OTA as you guys have pointed out as an option. It's certainly intriguing.

I checked my panny plasma in the basement and it appears to have a half decent menu system for the ATSC tuner that is built in.

Now if I just want to get my big toe wet with this would I be able to get a few channels here and there if I bought an indoor digital antenna? Keeping in mind the antenna would be sitting near my tv in the basement in Kanata. I'm thinking a sub-$100 purchase as something to play with.

If it went well I could see me grabbing something like an eye-toy atsc tuner for the iMac and either moving the antenna upstairs or eventually moving on to an outdoors or attic setup.

So ya, long story short, would a $79 purchase of an indoor antenna give me something to play with?

cyas
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post #19 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 06:09 PM
 
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I would not recommend an interior antenna if you have the possibilty to install something outside or in the attic.
Here are some charts to help you choose an antenna. http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=97121
Also go to http://www.tvfool.com/ to find out what station are available in your area.
Remember that in about 6 months all stations in Canada will be digital what should bring you more stations.
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post #20 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
 
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I've been checking out tvfool today and the OTA forums here. I'm not sure I'm ready for drilling holes and trying to run cables to certain parts of the house that may end up being in tricky places. Was just curious as to what a set top antenna would do in my little experiment here. I'm sure I could see myself graduating to something in the attic or outside down the road if this all works out.

I'm more of a computer guy so I'd be playing with an indoor one to prove that I could do some pvr type stuff with the mac, eye tv, etc... before I went bigger.
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post #21 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 06:35 PM
 
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For experiment, a rabbit ears with loop for uhf ($5 to $10) would be the best. Basement is not the best, but what you could do is connect a lenght of coax to your little antenna and put it somewhere high outside in direction of the transmitter (location from tvfool). The cable can run through a door or window. That should give you a feel of what you can get from an external antenna. Best to do the test on a clear day for better reception.

Else, if you still want an indoor antenna, bests are listed in the chart. But again basement is not ideal.
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post #22 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 07:05 PM Thread Starter
 
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Oh I like this! It'll give me something to play with on the software side - recording a station etc. Thanks for the tip. I'm liking this experiment more and more. So far it's a lot easier than both my wife and I expected.
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post #23 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 09:29 PM
 
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You don't need to drill a lot of holes. Use the existing cables that are already run for your Cable TV. Just need to get the one outdoor cable to the splitter, probably in the basement.
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post #24 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
 
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Gents I picked up a cheapy antenna tonight for fun and connected it to my plasma downstairs. Within 5 minutes I had the best looking CBC picture I've ever seen. Love the uncompressed picture. That and the french CBC were the only channels but that's all I needed to see...

This has definitely increased my interest in the OTA forums so I'll be getting caught up over there.

Hey Johnnysmoke. If I still have rogers internet will I be able to use the existing cable coming into the house and not affect my Internet? If this is documented somewhere already forgive me for as king and you can point me in the right direction for some reading.

You guys have me seriously thinking about throwing up a temporary setup outside to get me through the winter until I can spend more time rigging the antenna higher up in the spring.

OTA will be the perfect complement to what we have going on so far with the internet options.
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post #25 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 10:19 PM
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If you are going to use a HTPC the other option is to get an HD HomeRun tuner. This is a network device that you can attach to your LAN. Therefore you could put it in your attic as long as you can get CAT-5 to your attic. This could mean less drilling of holes and less problems with signal level drops caused by long RG-6 antenna cable runs. It will also allow you to record/watch two channels at once since it has two tuners.
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post #26 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-20, 11:16 PM
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There is no need to get a CAT5 up to the attic. All that is required is power for the HD HomeRun and a wireless access point. Another option is an eave, gable or chimney mount and a small antenna such as a Channel Master 4221HD.

At 20 I had a good mind. At 40 I had money. At 60 I've lost my mind and my money. Oh, to be 20 again. --Scary
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post #27 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-21, 08:48 AM Thread Starter
 
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ScaryBob. Here's what I'm thinking of doing short term to kick off my OTA project.

* Order the CM4221HD (and possibly the CM7777 preamp from what i'm reading for Ottawa???)
* Get the EyeTV One for the macBook (ATSC usb tuner)
* Use the spare room upstairs in the house as a place to temporarily setup the antenna and macbook.

The door to the attic is in this room so if I was going to do an attic install the antenna wouldn't have much higher to move up from the test location.

The chimney is also close to this spare room so if I do end up outside its quite close.

Here's my TVFool charrt
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...3cf449cd8a4780

I don't want to get too off topic here as I'm moving into more OTA discussions but figured since we have it going I'll ask here.


The HD HomeRun tuner totally fits the way we consume tv in the house now so that is a great find. Slingboxes + PVRs were the norm in the house today when the cable was on
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post #28 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-21, 09:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScaryBob View Post
There is no need to get a CAT5 up to the attic. All that is required is power for the HD HomeRun and a wireless access point. Another option is an eave, gable or chimney mount and a small antenna such as a Channel Master 4221HD.
That may be the case but I personally don't trust HD video over wifi. Wouldn't you need a wireless bridge at the HD HomeRun since it does not have wireless capabilities built in?
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post #29 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-21, 10:11 AM
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You are probably correct about that. Two HD streams might not be possible even with a wireless N router.

Bucketo, sounds like a good plan. My hunch is that you will end up with a chimney mount to get those one edge stations clearly and reliably. My only concern is that the EyeTV One could be a waste of money in the long term. A more general purpose solution would be a better idea. In the long term, I would be looking at two antennas and two dual tuner cards in a small PC or two HDHomeRuns (or similar devices.) I would point one antenna at 10° and the other, placed higher, at 110°. Note that the HDHomeRun might not be the best solution since it is ATSC only. I would not bother with a preamp initially. It might no be required.

At 20 I had a good mind. At 40 I had money. At 60 I've lost my mind and my money. Oh, to be 20 again. --Scary
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post #30 of 108 (permalink) Old 2011-01-21, 10:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bucketo
I don't want to get too off topic here as I'm moving into more OTA discussions but figured since we have it going I'll ask here.
Yep, now that you've caught on to OTA please take the following steps listed here: http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=125161. Afterwards you can use the HTPC forum to discuss your computer-based requirements and questions.



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