DTV Reception Article (elpasotimes.com)

Jason Fritz

Administrator
Staff member
#1
Wanted to highlight a couple of items from a recent elpasotimes.com article on DTV Reception. Comments and critiques are always welcome!

In Hollywood, broadcast engineer Dana Puopolo gets the local stations fine with an indoor antenna in his bedroom, where he gets a view of the broadcast towers on Mt. Wilson, a dozen miles away. But even an amplified indoor antenna isn't enough to supply a watchable image to his wide-screen TV, which is in the living room on the other side of the apartment.

"You can get it so the picture's perfect, and then when you sit down, 30 seconds later it pixelates into oblivion," Puopolo said, describing how the picture breaks up into big chunks of color. "The dirty little secret about digital is that it doesn't have nearly the coverage of analog."

A study published last year by market research firm Centris estimated that more than half of all households will have problems with digital reception. The study was criticized by several groups as exaggerating the problem. The FCC itself said 5 percent of households were likely to have problems.
Something interesting in the article that caught my attention,

Many stations now have an analog antenna at the top of their transmission tower and a digital one mounted lower down on the side of the tower. Many plan to eventually move the digital antenna to the top, which can improve coverage.
 
#4
The small town of Bergton, West Virginia will no longer have free ota tv since their only tv channel switched to digital but their signal translator didn't.

Here's a link to the story from NPR.
Digital TV Goes Dark For Some Rural Viewers : NPR
Now that's just ************ poor planning by the Government and translator licensees. Sorry, but it just is.

"The world of translator licensees is a hodgepodge of local counties, special television taxing districts, service clubs such as Lions or Rotary, and informal associations of ranchers, farmers and townspeople, who throw 50 bucks into a kitty every year to keep the local translator going. The work is often left to the handiest person in the community. In one county in Wyoming, a local rancher and her son volunteer to keep several translators operating."
 

Aaron62

Contributor
Staff member
#6
My question is, why do organizations like the Lions and or Rotary club have to foot the bill? Where's the government assistance for repeaters? I'm not one for doling out money for every cause or social program, but why the heck does a fricking rancher have to volunteer to keep the translators going?
 

TonyT

DTVUSA Member
#7
My question is, why do organizations like the Lions and or Rotary club have to foot the bill? Where's the government assistance for repeaters? I'm not one for doling out money for every cause or social program, but why the heck does a fricking rancher have to volunteer to keep the translators going?
True, but when you think about it, most housing developments and new home subdivisions are responsible for utility piping and getting sanitary facilities to the new homes, which also includes cable TV services and etc. If you chose to buy a home in the boonies, you have to be prepared for things like limited availability of OTA TV. I'm not saying that free TV shouldn't be available to everyone, but, it gets pretty expensive to provide coverage to spread out areas that may only have a 50-100 viewers.
 

AndyTiedye

DTVUSA Member
#8
If you chose to buy a home in the boonies, you have to be prepared for things like limited availability of OTA TV.
Those who live in the sticks and never had OTA obviously won't miss it.

It is the people who HAVE it now, and WON'T have it after June 12th,
who are understandably upset.

Some of this is due to the "digital cliff" — the all-or-nothing nature of DTV.
Some is due to the move to UHF. Some is due to stations reducing power.
Some is due to translator issues.

We can receive some DTV here, with a top-of-the-line antenna 50' up.
With a lot of freezes. If the weather has been dry for a few days.
We can get a few analog stations with rabbit ears. Snowy but reliable.
Pretty big difference.

Further down the hill from us, they will lose all reception when low VHF goes dark.
 

pghmyn

DTVUSA Member
#9
True, but when you think about it, most housing developments and new home subdivisions are responsible for utility piping and getting sanitary facilities to the new homes, which also includes cable TV services and etc. If you chose to buy a home in the boonies, you have to be prepared for things like limited availability of OTA TV. I'm not saying that free TV shouldn't be available to everyone, but, it gets pretty expensive to provide coverage to spread out areas that may only have a 50-100 viewers.
Completely disagree. There are some of us who rely on TV for information/media "in the boonies".
 
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