Showing posts with label ATSC3. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ATSC3. Show all posts

Jul 29, 2019

More TV Antenna Facts

Any TV antenna will receive analog, digital, and HD TV signals. Even those old rabbit ears that you have in storage from when you switched over to cable/satellite can be used to receive digital and HD TV signals if the station transmitters are in range. Omni directional vs. directional antennas work well for capturing stations located in different directions from your location.

Current antennas can even be used with the new ATSC 3 coming during the next few years. It will offer two way communication with TV, 4K, targeted (personal) advertising, and weather alerts. The only thing that will need to be changed is the addition of an ATSC 3 dongle/box, or an ATSC 3 equipped TV. This standard is not compatible with current over-the-air TV.

Do not worry, it will be years before the changeover is made, and stations are required by law to maintain old signals for five years. During that time the stations will be broadcasting old and new. That is why you need to re-scan your antenna stations every few months as the broadcasters have already begun to consolidate station numbers. Many cities have been testing and may begin rollout during 2020.
Some newer antennas do have better designs for pulling in some signals, but most benefits are not significant and especially not because they are labeled HD (which is not true). All newer antennas are not better. Try your old one first, then decide. Generally outdoor antennas placed higher up pull in more stations. For most local sports and news, indoor antennas work well.

You cannot use a satellite dish to receive over-the-air TV signals. It is not the correct shape and has internal circuitry that is not suitable for broadcast TV reception. You can ditch the dish and attach an antenna to the pole to reuse the pole. Also, the same coax cable works for both satellite and antenna, unless it is more than ten years old or worn, then you might consider replacing it with an RG6 cable.

TV Stations Moving

The recent FCC sales of bandwidth and ATSC 3 changes are causing local TV channels to change numbers. Here is a handy web site that lets you know when to re-scan so you always have the most channels available in your area. Just type in your zip code. LINK

Select Scan or Autotune from your TV or converter box control menu to start the scanning process. Your TV will do the rest. This process usually takes a few minutes to complete.

Once your re-scan is complete you will find your favorite stations and maybe a few more. If you have re-scanning difficulties, you can usually find instructions by selecting the Set-Up or Menu button on your television or converter box remote control.

Mar 8, 2019

Broadcast Auction for Antenna TV

During 2016 the US FCC decided to sell some of the airwave spectrum to align the use of broadcast airwaves with 21st century consumer demands for video and broadband services. The idea was to ease congestion and open up spectrum for the upcoming 5G wireless service. Bidding closed during March 2017.
Since that time over the air (OTA) stations have begun transitions to new station numbers. It continues through 2019.

Dallas, for instance has a number of stations transitioning between April 2019 and June 2019. Dallas is also transitioning some stations to the new ATSC3 format. The way it is making the transition is grouping some stations together as sub numbers. No need to worry as any station that converts must still be available for five years as is (although the station number may change) after the change. Next year when you get your new whizbang ATSC3 converter box you will be able to see better live free TV with some 4K promised and interactive programming, plus many more features.

The bottom line is that if you are using an antenna for watching TV, it is a good idea to re-scan for stations every few months. It only takes a few minutes and you may find new stations. You may also discover why a few stations seemed to stop working, but are now working again.