Thursday, September 11, 2008


TV and Radio Reception

We recently changed our antenna from an huge old VHF antenna to a channel master cm4228 optimized for digital television. As a result my radio reception isn't quite as good as it was with the old antenna, e.g. I can't receive WBFO 88.70 in Buffalo as well as before. I can hear it but there's a lot of static. Not really too big a deal as WBFO streams on the internet.

Running coaxial cable from the new antenna to the Hauppauge WinTV-GO-FM I can get all the local radio stations just as well as before. I'm using the console radio program from the xawtv 3.95 package. By running "radio -S" in bash one can create a radio.fmmap file to see what frequencies are available. The scanning ranges from 87.50 to 108 Mhz. One interesting radio station that showed up it the scan was CIUT FM at 89.50 Mhz which is evidently broadcast from the University of Toronto.

Switching from the old VHF to the new UHF-optimized antenna seemed to put an end to receiving American analog stations 2, 4 and 7 (the NBC, CBS and ABC affiliates in my case) but they will disappear soon anyway. Of course now I can get digital 2, 4 and 7, just not on the old Hauppauge card. Sooner or later I'll get a pcHDTV card for the computer. There are many other analog channels still receivable with the UHF antenna which will continue to broadcast into 2011.
UPDATE: I can get analog channel 7 if the Antenna is pointed directly south, maybe it's possible to get 2 and 4?

The picture with digital TV is quite good but things seem a bit thin on the SCI-FI side compared to Rogers Cable. Of course there's no monthly bill with digital TV over antenna, just the initial cost of the new antenna.


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