... A Sour Apple Tree

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Name:
Location: Huntington, WV, United States

I'm a 37 year-old guy from Huntington, WV.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

HDTV tips for folks in Huntington

Here are some tips for people living in the city of Huntington, West Virginia who want to get digital and high definition television via terrestrial, over-the-air signals.
  • Do not worry about buying the most expensive set-top antenna. Every few months or so, I buy a $30-$40 antenna with fancy knobs and lights and I have returned all of 'em within three days. Those antennas are designed to magnify weak signals in the 'burbs and sticks. In Moneyton, we have good signal strength; our problems are shadows, reflections, and noise from hundreds of 3 story + structures, thereby making antenna placement, not amplification, the key to getting good digital signals. My cheap-ass, $10 vhf-uhf antenna works just fine and picks up HDTV and DTV signals from WSAZ, WOWK, and WPBY. The pricey ones can only find 3 and 13.

  • Find an optimum spot for each channel. While there will be one or two spots that do ok for all channels, each signal will have its "money configuration." Don't be afraid to jiggle the ufh dish or the vhf rabbit ears; you can always move them back.

  • Don't be afraid of props. We use a metal candle snuffer as a sort of an extra arm for the uhf dish. It is especially helpful for getting the WOWK HD signal (by far the trickiest in the South Side). Others have success with aluminum foil and coat hangers. Be creative!

  • Be patient. Not all signals will come in perfect all of the time. Clouds, trucks, and trains can all mess with DTV signals in Huntington. Sometimes you'll hafta watch Medium and How I Met Your Mother in analog. Dems the apples.

  • Don't give up. The HDTV and DTV signals will get stronger after the 2009 changeover. For example, WV PBS is sending out a 150,000 watt DTV signal. When the analog gets shut off, however, they will crank it to 1,000,000 watts. At that time, WSAZ, WOWK, and WPBY will be automatic and we will be fiddlin' to get WCHS and WVAH in high def (now only available in analog).

  • Have Fun! This is a new technology and you will be able to bore the bejesus out of your grandkids with stories of jiggling antennas to see what sort of experiments the engineers at local stations were up to back in aught-seven. You can even compare yourself to the drunken sailors who heard Reginald Fessenden on December 24, 1906, read Luke Chapter 2 and singing "O Holy Night."
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