minor signal disruption

Madeline

DTVUSA Rookie
#1
I just bought a 32" Samsung DTV. The picture is absolutely beautiful when the signals are not affected by something. If it is raining or windy, I get "Weak or No Signal." The rabbit ears has the little wire loop attached and I get some UHF very nicely, but I have not watched any of them.

My zip code is 76133 and TV Fool shows the towers in Dallas to be about 24 miles from my home. Since I watch the VHF channels only, FOX, CBS, ABC, PBS, NBC without problems, except for those mentioned, I wonder if a better quality VHF antenna would be more resistant to signal interruptions.
My 15 year old rabbit's ears poles are about 2 feet.

But I understand that the signal frequencies may change (at least in some areas) when digital transition is complete. I thought the changes were on TV Fool, but I couldn't find them. Perhaps it is best to wait until June.

An aside: I don't mind getting "No Signal" when it is raining, because here, in Texas, we are, as I write, having severe fires caused by dryness in several counties. Two people have died.

I love your forum, and I have learned so much. I didn't know digital signals were so acutely affected by extraneous factors. Sometimes just walking in front of my TV disrupts the signals..
 
#4
You're getting a first-hand look at what those using Satellite TV have considered 'what comes with the territory'

With Satellite, rain, thunderstorms, and trees/wind can disrupt the line of sight of a satellite beam to the sky, resulting in the very same result. it's called 'rain/weather fade' and sadly unlike Analog, which may get fuzzy, OTA DTV reception is going to be just like satellite as a similar phenomenon happens.

Unfortunately, just like with satellite, there's really no way to make your DTV setup 'immune' to weather. there's a threshold where it won't work. you can improve it where it will work in rain or snow, but wind/electrical storms are going to cause problems. enough that after the transition is through, TV is not going to be reliable enough to use for the EAS warnings about tornadoes or other disasters. you may want to invest in a Weather Radio which will work in a power outage and is not disrupted by interference from weather. DTV has its benefits and its costs. you get a great picture all the time, more channels, and a program guide. but you have to learn to live with the occasional outages, faulty equipment. a great many OTA viewers are going to have to acclimate as the satellite users have.
 
#5
TVFool says your approximately 25 miles from towers, so those bunny ears might be stretching it as an antenna. Half those channels are high VHF and half low. Hmm, I'd maybe upgrade to a newer multi element rabbit ears or something like the Terk HDTVo.
 
#6
I would do a good Uhf antenna stacked 4 ft over a good VHF antenna like a Antenna Craft U 8000 over a Wineguard Ya713 see cowboys deep fringe prescription for get the pre amp and combine with a signal combiner point to 100 degrees and you should have great signal
 

AndyTiedye

DTVUSA Member
#7
after the transition is through, TV is not going to be reliable enough to use for the EAS warnings about tornadoes or other disasters. you may want to invest in a Weather Radio which will work in a power outage and is not disrupted by interference from weather.
Weather radios are good. Ham radios are even better.

All manner of centralized communications get disrupted when somebody cuts the fiber, as folks in Silicon Valley discovered recently. News reports showed 911 not going through and ham radio operators passing emergency traffic to the police, etc.

It is evident that the communications infrastructure is only marginally interested in serving outlying areas, and the links, be it TV reception,
telephone lines that snake through miles of forests, cell phone reception —
all are rather fragile, and redundancy is highly desirable. Cellular has also gone digital, and exhibits the same clifflike characteristics.

Ham radio makes a good back-up in either case.
The weather radio is a good idea too (and many ham radios have extended receive and would be able to receive those broadcasts).
It has never been easier to get a ham license.

73s
KC1IP
 

1inxs

DTVUSA Member
#8
I just bought a 32" Samsung DTV. The picture is absolutely beautiful when the signals are not affected by something. If it is raining or windy, I get "Weak or No Signal." The rabbit ears has the little wire loop attached and I get some UHF very nicely, but I have not watched any of them.
The wind or rain should have no effect on your signal with an indoor antenna. Your indoor antenna should be fine. Are you sure you set up the Samsung using the menu for Digital scan and not analog? Your problems sound more the types of what analog would be. What model 32" Samsung do you have?
 
#9
I know for a fact that UHF can get wonky when the trees are wet after the rain, because the signals bounce off

and the majority of digital tv is in the uhf band
 

1inxs

DTVUSA Member
#10
I guess I'm just lucky. I get a signal strength of 77-85 at this location. The tower is 3 miles away. The Clearstream2 C4 antenna is located in the attic and I don't have signal loss even during a 2 foot snow storm. I asked the engineer that maintains the towers for Summit County and I was told the weather has no effect on it.

 

Aaron62

Contributor
Staff member
#11
I guess I'm just lucky. I get a signal strength of 77-85 at this location. The tower is 3 miles away. The Clearstream2 C4 antenna is located in the attic and I don't have signal loss even during a 2 foot snow storm. I asked the engineer that maintains the towers for Summit County and I was told the weather has no effect on it.
1inxs, what's all that white stuff all over the place?? :D

I would imagine that there as to be a little deflection from snow, right? I guess a station engineer knows better. I swear DTV reception is like voodoo with what it can go through and what it can't. Something as small as a 10' tree can affect reception of a channel, yet 2' of packed powder is just fine?
 
#12
well, UHF is line of sight dependant and terrain sensitive so if there's a huge snow mountain between you and the transmitter, well.......you get the idea.

I'm gonna miss the analog VHF channels, all of them come in rock solid over here. Some of their digital UHF counterparts are spotty. (not all)
 

1inxs

DTVUSA Member
#13
I'm gonna miss the analog VHF channels, all of them come in rock solid over here. Some of their digital UHF counterparts are spotty. (not all)
Let's hope your spotty UHF reception will stabilize after the full DTV switch. Most areas won't go full power until the full switch over is complete. I'm not 100% sure if it's the case with the towers you're receiving the spotty/weak signals. It's a hurry up and wait game for now :playball:
 
#14
I'm gonna miss the analog VHF channels, all of them come in rock solid over here. Some of their digital UHF counterparts are spotty. (not all)
I have the exact opposite issue. all my UHF channels are rock solid even in wind buy the only VHF one is gone with the wind. literally. doesn't take much. i will NOT miss VHF. one less antenna to deal with and one less part of an antenna to affect UHF. (no more dipoles once Fox moves to 28.1)

I hope that with analog gone there will be room for many new channels.
 
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TonyT

DTVUSA Member
#16
1inxs, what's all that white stuff all over the place?? :D

I would imagine that there as to be a little deflection from snow, right? I guess a station engineer knows better. I swear DTV reception is like voodoo with what it can go through and what it can't. Something as small as a 10' tree can affect reception of a channel, yet 2' of packed powder is just fine?
Trees are the worst for deflection/multipath other than mounting a antenna inside your house.
 
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