Question: What Chances for Ontario HD/DTV & FM reception in ROC?
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What Chances for Ontario HD/DTV & FM reception in ROC?


This is a discussion on What Chances for Ontario HD/DTV & FM reception in ROC? within the DTV | HDTV Reception and Antenna Discussion forums, part of the Over-the-Air (Antenna TV) category.

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  1. #1
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    What Chances for Ontario HD/DTV & FM reception in ROC?

    Hello,

    I am a temporarily "displaced" Canadian in Rochester, NY. I do have a Bell satellite subscription, but would like to supplement it with OTA HD reception (as well as FM) of Toronto and and other Ontario stations. That may allow me to reduce or customize my Bell channel lineup.

    I admit to two things:

    I am a bit of a tech and broadcast junkie.

    I am a rabid Leafs fan so I would love to have HNIC broadcasts in their OTA HD glory. Not that I have a major issue with the quality of Bell's signal.

    I have been considering the Winegard 8200U and the Channel Master CM-5020, with pre-amp on the mast, and I plan to combine the signals with local cable/ISP, distributing to three TVs (2 at present, 1 more to come) and four FM tuners.

    Do I need to forget reaching across the lake for DTV and just get a good medium/fringe antenna for DTV and a separate antenna for FM DX?

    TVFool data:

    TV Fool

  2. #2
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    Greetings!
    You're in my neck of the woods! I grew up in Rochester.

    I can't promise you Canada. When I was a kid we used to get Canada all the time - but that was analog, and VHF travels well across Lake Ontario. We were also located on a rise (above East Ridge Rd) about 2 miles from the lake, and we had one of those big old 1970's Radio Shack antennas 35 feet off the ground.

    I tried to pull a report from TVfool, but it's down once again. Rabbitears.info tells me this:

    26‑1 (26) CICO-53 TVO BELLEVILLE ON 76 4 -93.78 Poor 2Edge
    Anything else is tropo - the distance is 60-100 miles to any Canadian stations, at best. Toronto is about 100.

    I'll tell you what I think, though: You'll need a good location, a large directional antenna like an Antenns Direct 91xg, and a lot of height. Your chances for FM are quite good with a decent antenna, however - and don't forget AM as well!

  3. #3
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    Thanks, Pogi. Yes, the CN tower is about 96 miles from my location, so I know I'm deep fringe for CBLT, CFTO, and anything coming from that location. Here's the TVFool radar graphic:

    Radar-All.jpg

    I'm not sure why CBLT (CBC Toronto) isn't listed; I've seen it before, but CKWS is listed and there's a chance I could get it.

    Oh well, maybe I just put up the best antenna for the job and hope for the best.

  4. #4
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    You appear to be way out of range of any of the Canadian stations. You do have nice strong locals coming from the south, but the Canadian stations would be tropographic DXing at the best.
    Snappy Dan Reminds You:

    DO NOT install antennas anywhere where they could fall into overhead power lines!!! An antenna falling into power lines may result in electrical shock or death. All outdoor antennas must be grounded in accordance with the National Electrical Code (NEC). Be careful while working on roofs or towers. Always use appropriate safety precautions!!!

  5. #5
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    If you were at the west end of the lake (nearer Buffalo), your chances would be much better. The east end of the lake (Watertown, etc) would be easier also, but there aren't many stations on that end. Some Canadian stations are still broadcasting in analog, I believe.

    I would defiantly invest in a good FM antenna, and possibly string up an AM antenna if you can. I do remember those 1970's analog Canadian broadcasts being quite snowy but watchable. But in the digital age, you're just going to get frustrated trying to watch TV.

    All that said, there are a lot of US channels to watch there. I was there last summer in an RV with just a small antenna and got quite a few channels. One of the problems in that area is that Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse all overlap, and there can be co-channel problems.
    Last edited by MrPogi; 07-12-2013 at 05:25 PM.

  6. #6
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    Trius,
    On the slightly off topic, may I inquire where you are from in Canada?

    I was born in Alexandria Bay NY, and spent many summers at my grandparents in Morristown, NY (across the river from Brockway). TV reception was, and still is, a nightmare up there: Morristown, NY TVfool. In those days, a trip to Canada was a short 15 minute boat ride with no border security whatsoever.

    Anyway, I want to suggest that if you have never been there and have some time on your hands, the 1000 Islands is a place you should not miss. VISIT THE 1000 ISLANDS

  7. #7
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    Thanks, everyone. Pogi, I'm from Stratford, Ontario, which is about 1-1/2 hours west of Toronto. I have lived in Toronto, London and Wallaceburg (ugh!) ... while I consider Stratford home, I identify strongly with Toronto for a variety of reasons, especially that both of my kids are U of T graduates (2 bachelors, 1 masters plus another masters on the way) and most of my friends live in the GTA. Every summer just before Labour Day my wife and I spend time in Prince Edward County, which is straight across from Sodus Bay. I've been in and around 1000 Islands, Kingston and Ganonoque, which are indeed lovely. But I do love "The County" and we may end up buying some land there and putting up a cottage retirement home.

    Dan -- damn digital broadcasting!

  8. #8
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    A number of the Canadian stations have been vanishing and reappearing from TVFool for a couple of weeks now, from what I've heard. You can use the signal of CICA-TV 19 to figure out what CBLT-20 (same power level and antenna on CN Tower) will be like. Suffice it to say, it doesn't look great.

    In theory, most of the Rochester area should get at least some signal from Global affiliate CIII-27 in Peterborough, though I don't know how that maps to real life. RabbitEars.Info

    Not sure about anything beyond that.

    - Trip
    N4MJC

    Comments are my own and not that of the FCC (my employer) or anyone else.

    RabbitEars

    "Ignorance and prejudice and fear walk hand in hand..." - Rush "Witch Hunt"

  9. #9
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    Thanks for the input, Trip.
    It's interesting to see how those nicely defined contour lines over the lake break up once the signal hits the shore! It clearly shows that my parents address is in the yellow zone, and 1/2 mile down the road has no signal. Of course, there are other factors that the maps don't show - for example, the high-power lines from Ginna Station nuclear power plant running N/S through the area wreak havoc on reception.

  10. #10
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    Trius,
    For the same reasons, I tell people I'm from Rochester. I grew up in Ontario (West of Sodus Bay) and that leads to the response, "Oh, so you're Canadian!" when I tell people where I'm from.

    Hope you find a retirement paradise in The Islands. My grandparents owned property on the river in the 50's that's worth a million now.

  11. #11
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    I think I'll probably go big or go home; I mean, what the heck?! I'm leaning toward the Winegard 8200U; the reviews seem to favour, albeit very slightly, it over a CM both in performance and durability.

    Any preferences or suggestions for the pre-amp and rotor?

 

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