VHF reception sucks

jimbill

DTVUSA Rookie
#1
I have an indoor VHF/UHF boosted antenna. I can get the digital channels that broadcast on UHF just fine, but the channels that broadcast on VHF give me nearly 0 signal strength. My analog recpetion is fine for the VHF channels, but the digital channels suck. Most of the stations broadcast from the same location on the same mountain, the only difference being VHF vs UHF. I have contacted my local television stations, and they keep telling me I am well within range of being able to get a clean signal. Does VHF suck for digital broadcast? If it does, why would they volunteer to use it? If not, how come only VHF stations won't work?
 
#3
doesn't matter if it's VHF high or low, it sucks terrible here whenever anything other than a sunny/perfectly calm day is going on. any breeze, a shower, trees foliate, kiss Fox 7 goodbye.

I'm so glad that it's going to UHF channel 28.1 come the transition. that's all i use VHF for anyways.
 
#4
You must understand indoor antennas suck at best they have very little gain and if you are close the amp will over load the signal. try a non amplified antenna as see what happens. also you can use an outdoor antenna in the attic which will give you better results than a set top antenna. You could also use a 4 bay antenna for uhf and a cheap VHF antenna for the VHf join with a signal combiner and point them at the transmitters.
 
#5
I think UHF works better because of how high the power levels are. On VHF high the max they can do as allowed by the FCC is about 30kW. Plus VHF can get more interference etc.

Of course VHF gets over terrain better (analog side that is), but it looks like the digital side of VHF is troublesome.

This makes me worried for our NBC affiliate going back to VHF.
 
#6
The roof antenna i use is amped but is outdoor. the other antennas (set of two) won't even pick up Fox. i get a 28% signal on the roof (barely useable but with spring it's dying) on the others i can't get out of zero. that's VHF for ya, can be perfect but it drops off easier. only the DTVPal can pick up Fox currently, the Apex is un-watchable on that channel.
 

Tim58hsv

DTVUSA Member
#7
I was getting ch. 9 out of Cincinnati for a week or two and that was with a uhf 4-bay antenna. After that we couldn't pick them up anymore but still got a weak signal reading from the station. Now, that's gone too. It's like they don't exist once again.

Only thing I can figure is that 9's digital signal (frequency assignment: ch. 10) may have been interfering with the analog signal of ch. 10 out of Columbus so that ch. 9 had to cut the power back down again.

Things should get better after the transition.
 

1inxs

DTVUSA Member
#9
Last night Fox went from a lousy hardly watchable 28% to 73%. WTH?!

Retro's program guide is missing too.
Most of us will see signal strength fluctuations from now until the full digital transition is complete. Some channels will be broadcast at partial power until they eliminate the analog stations. With the elimination of an analog channel they can divert the necessary power to the digital channel, which increases the signal strength. They will also be moving stations from one frequency to another. Currently some UHF stations are broadcast on frequency's above 60 and DTV signals are more stable when they are below 50. Most of us will be happy when the digital transition is complete.
 
#10
my box just added 13 more channels this afternoon and I can only get part of them 4 are in Hampton roads VA. the other 2 are in Myrtle beach SC and all of SC PBS feeds as well but I can't get a signal wonder if I will after June. of course the Latino station is between me and myrtle beach and I can get it without an antenna
 

Aaron62

Contributor
Staff member
#11
Good read for the difficulties of receiving low band VHF - Low-Band VHF DTV Revisited, by Doug Lung

Dr. Oded Bendov, one of the authors of the comprehensive study on DTV reception I used as a guide for determining appropriate signal DTV levels for the study in my March article, added another item to consider when deciding to move from UHF to low-VHF. If most of your viewers will be using an indoor antenna, VSWR could be a problem. Oded pointed out that, "Indoor antennas have very high VSWR at VHF thus raising the in-situ noise figure to a point where SNR is below or near threshold even without interference present." He also noted that while new "smart" antennas are being designed for indoor use, they are designed for high-band VHF and UHF, not the lower VHF channels
 
#12
I have an indoor VHF/UHF boosted antenna. I can get the digital channels that broadcast on UHF just fine, but the channels that broadcast on VHF give me nearly 0 signal strength. My analog recpetion is fine for the VHF channels, but the digital channels suck. Most of the stations broadcast from the same location on the same mountain, the only difference being VHF vs UHF. I have contacted my local television stations, and they keep telling me I am well within range of being able to get a clean signal. Does VHF suck for digital broadcast? If it does, why would they volunteer to use it? If not, how come only VHF stations won't work?
Have you checked TVFool TV Fool enter your Zip code and you find your digital stations, direction to transmitter, and relative signal level at your location. Also check out Digital TV Transition Information lots of answers to your questions.
 

MonicaP

DTVUSA Rookie
#13
The old addage if it ain't broke dont fix it definetly applies to this DTV crap. I hate it. I hate it!!!!!!!! They claimed there would be more channels. I can no longer catch several of my favorite channels such as wb 55 . If its cloudy or rainy the signal fades and i miss out on part of my shows. ill say again I hate DTV. This is not an approvement and Americans should have a vote on this subject.
 

CptlA

DTVUSA Member
#14
The old addage if it ain't broke dont fix it definetly applies to this DTV crap. I hate it. I hate it!!!!!!!! They claimed there would be more channels. I can no longer catch several of my favorite channels such as wb 55 . If its cloudy or rainy the signal fades and i miss out on part of my shows. ill say again I hate DTV. This is not an approvement and Americans should have a vote on this subject.
Are you using a antenna?
 
#15
The only channel i have that's 'missing' is WB/CW WAZE-TV Evansville. it's sadly gone. no signal, TV fool shows a digital tower but there is none (you drive to where it's supposed to be, nope). their analog is turned off. that means i miss tons of shows i would have to have cable/satellite to watch. (shows on Nick @ Nite show on CW on weekdays, like Roseanne, George Lopez, to name a few)

Other than that, i have great picture quality, and no staticy noise when i get up to use the bathroom. no more analog fizzle during windy days (and i have no more problems with my new 3-antenna selectable setup, one for wind, one for harder to use channels, and one for general use).

But yeah, it's just like having satellite TV. the 'cliff effect' is just as common during rainy/snowy/windy days as one would have using Dish Network or DirecTV. the beauty of this is though, that you aren't paying a monthly fee for days you cannot use it.

Sadly they implemented this in a way un-American. they forced it onto the People without even a vote. but i would go further to say that even if there were to be a vote, the majority would still favor the DTV transition. Broadcasters would favor it to save money and to get rid of the old equipment, and most people wouldn't care. the very few who would who either lose channels or live in fringe areas are not enough to cancel out the vote. sadly.

I get 15 channels though as opposed to my original 3-5. so i do have more options. i had to try a ton of work to get it to be as good as it is, originally all i could pick up was PBS. that was it. a lot has to do with what kind of antenna, cable which connects to it, and the presence (or lack of ) booster amps. and the box has more to do with it too, a few are crap and a few are great.

When/If i ever get back my CW affiliate, i will be completely happy. with that one missing i am still torn over this DTV thing.
 
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