OTA TV GUIDE FOR ALL WANTING FREE TV

pjs344

DTVUSA Rookie
#1
To start we need to know if you have OTA TV transmitter/translators in your area and we need to go to www.rabbitears.info/tvq.php (the most up to date site for ota tv info). On Rabbitears TV query you put in your nearest city/town, state, Auth Type: select Licenses and search. It will give you a list of stations that you can get in your City or Town. Then you can click on the TV symbol to get each stations ID (call sign) and stations location. Click on each stations ID and you will see all the networks and channels they have. Click on technical data and you will see transmitter info. You may see the name of the location of the transmitter with location coordinates near the bottom. If you click on the blue Channel XX number or a tower symbol you will see the transmitters location on a map with a signal coverage radius outlined in rad. Upper right you have map choices including sat view and you can zoom to see the location and all the transmitters at that location. Some transmitters may have station ID bubbles near them. You can do this with all the stations listed to see if there are transmitters/translators in the same or different locations. This will help in knowing if you need an omni-directional or directional antenna(s)for your location to get all the stations you want. If you click on translator data you can see all the translators and their locations used by the TV station at the bottom of the page. Station owner, operator and more. From there you can go also go to TVfool.org and click on stations that you can get. Put in your address, zip and click on find locals. From there it will give you transmitter direction and distance from your location to help point your antenna. Both sites will help you. But TVfool, Antennaweb, AntennaPoint are lacking updates and translator data, stations IDs, channels, networks may be missing or incorrect. Beware sites like Channelmaster link with these sites for their station look up help. When using Antennaweb and AntennaPoint for suburb, rural and mountain areas you may not see any TV station translators (a low power transmitter with same programing as the TV stations high-power transmitter) show up in the receivable TV station list because they have little or no translator data. So, you may have TV translators in your area and not know it because these sites gave you no TV stations transmitters in your area. If you live in a suburb, rural or mountain area you should use Rabbitears.info because it has the latest translator data and if you have any translators it will show on the list of TV stations for your location.

As for antenna to use. First we need to know if you have any station(s) using the Lo VHF band. If you do have a station(s) using Lo VHF you need to know that most indoor (flat panel and similar. Not rabbit ears) and outdoor antennas do not cover the Lo VHF Band (2-6 / 54-88 MHz). Some claim that they do but if you look at the specs you will find that they only have the HI VHF 7-13 / 174-216 MHz and UHF 14-36 / 470-602+ MHz bands listed. With the down fall of Radio shack and Antennacraft that made a variety of good TV antennas all we have left is Winegard and Channelmaster that make antennas that cover the low vhf band. Both brands offer a number of directional outdoor antennas and Winegard offers 2 mobile RV antennas. Antennas with Lo VHF: Channelmaster CM3016-20. Winegards HD7000R, HD8200U, Sensar GS 1100,2200 RV and Metrostar 360HD RV antenna. There are smaller companies and non-brand names that may cover the Lo VHF band. Since most stores and websites do not provide antenna specs you will need to go to the company’s website to check the specs for Lo VHF on their antennas. For those that have stations using Hi VHF and UHF you need to use a VHF/UHF antenna. For those with UHF stations it is best to use a UHF only antenna. The next thing you need to do is find the transmitter(s) with the longest distance from your location and get an antenna that is rated over that distance. So if the farthis Transmitter from you is 35 miles then you should get an antenna rated for 45 miles or more. For 25 miles or less away from your location get a 35 mile antenna.

I have one station on RF2 in Las Vegas and I use an older 2012 flat saucer shaped Winegard Metrostar 2000 RV antenna that works great in the house with the transmitters being less the 24 miles away. The antenna is not near any window and sits on top of my 8ft bookcase. It came with the amp. But I removed it because it did not make much difference in TV signal reception being so close to the transmitters. I believe you can still buy the older Metrostar 2000 online for less the new version. The only difference is that the newer Metrostar 360HD is smaller and is more dome shaped then the older 2000 model. The older 2000 model is rated for 45 miles and the new model is rated for 35 miles.
 
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