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Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?



 
 
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  #1  
Old February 17th 12, 08:19 PM posted to alt.cable-tv,comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv,rec.video.satellite,rec.video.satellite.misc
Ant[_5_]
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Posts: 25
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

Hello.

I don't know if this is the proper newsgroups to ask this. In a few
months, my family and I (three people) will be relocating/moving to
another house. We won't be able to get free over the air (OTA) due to a
small mountain/giant hill blocking transmitters for Los Angeles/L.A.
broadcasts. It is impossible to get a very high antenna (would require a
high rise building height with twenty floors -- 193 or more feet for the
local English stations in green color according to TVFool.com!). So that
means we will have to order cable or satellite TV for TV feeds. Since we
don't watch many movies and stuff (we just rent or stream), we will
still keep it simple and basic. Hopefully, cheap/low cost. Basically, we
want all local broadcast channels including foreign ones (asian like
Chinese).

We are definitely ordering Time Warner Cable (TWC)'s Road Runner
Internet service since that is the only fastest and cheapest ($52.99 per
month for standard package) since nothing else and/or good is available
(no DSL, no FIOS, satellite and dial-up sucks and are too slow).

TWC sales said for monthly payments as of Christmas break of 2011:
$24.50 (basic/local broadcast TV)
$52.99 (regular Internet package)
$10 DVR rental (heard cable DVRs suck? Or should we get our own
[however, I can't find one that doesn't require subscriptions like
DTVPal and ChannelMaster DVRs]
$49.99 for installation charge

Total = $84.79 per month for service (without $49.99 for installation
charge).

Bundled packages and a single bill would be nice too if it is cheap/not
much different, but if satellite TV service is a lot cheaper than we
will get it. However, it will suck if the whole cable goes out/down,
then no Internet and TV.

I read and heard that satellite TV services for TV stuff can be cheaper
and better quality. We will also need to get a new DVR (we still have
VCRs, but why?) to replace DTVPal DVR (only for OTA). There are several
satellite TV services like EchoStar, DishTV, DirecTV, etc. Which ones to
get? We have never owned satellite TV services before so this will be
new to us. Also, we still use old CRT TVs but we will get HDTV ones
later on when they break/die.

Thank you in advance.
--
"The tiny ant dares to enter the lion's ear." --Armenian
/\___/\ Ant(Dude) @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
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  #2  
Old February 17th 12, 08:29 PM posted to comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv
Patty Winter
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Posts: 3
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

Cable companies can (and usually do) carry more local channels than
satellite systems do. They're both required to carry certain locals,
but AFAIK, Dish and DirecTV carry few (if any) of the subchannels,
and that's where many of the foreign-language broadcasts are. So
check the channel lineups for all the companies you're considering
before you make a choice, to make sure that you select one that
has the channels you want.


Patty

  #3  
Old February 17th 12, 08:30 PM posted to comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv
Ant[_5_]
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Posts: 25
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

On 2/17/2012 12:29 PM PT, Patty Winter typed:

Cable companies can (and usually do) carry more local channels than
satellite systems do. They're both required to carry certain locals,
but AFAIK, Dish and DirecTV carry few (if any) of the subchannels,
and that's where many of the foreign-language broadcasts are. So
check the channel lineups for all the companies you're considering
before you make a choice, to make sure that you select one that
has the channels you want.


Thanks.
--
"Left right left right we're army ants. We swarm we fight. We have no
home. We roam. We race. You're lucky if we miss your place." --Douglas
Florian (The Army Ants Poem)
/\___/\ Ant(Dude) @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
  #4  
Old February 17th 12, 11:50 PM posted to alt.cable-tv,comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv,rec.video.satellite,rec.video.satellite.misc
Ant[_5_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 25
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

On 2/17/2012 1:12 PM PT, Bill M. typed:

TWC sales said for monthly payments as of Christmas break of 2011:
$24.50 (basic/local broadcast TV)
$52.99 (regular Internet package)
$10 DVR rental (heard cable DVRs suck? Or should we get our own
[however, I can't find one that doesn't require subscriptions like
DTVPal and ChannelMaster DVRs]
$49.99 for installation charge


Instead of using their DVR, which might suck and will definitely have
a monthly charge, I love my Silicondust HDHomerun network tuners.
Equip them with CableCards and you can watch or record the encrypted
channels, in addition to unencrypted locals. You'll need storage for
the recordings and you'll need a front end like SageTV, BeyondTV,
MythTV, Windows 7 Media Center, etc. Once set up, it works flawlessly,
at least for me. Wife is technology-challenged and took to this setup
like a duck to water. HDHR's (with CableCard support) are available
with 3 or 6 tuners. Lose the CableCard support (and the ability to
watch or record encrypted channels) and they have a unit available
with just two tuners.

http://www.silicondust.com/products/hdhomerun/prime/

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&DEPA=0&Order=BESTMATCH &N=-1&isNodeId=1&Description=silicondust&x=0&y=0

Note that these tuners won't work with satellite TV, so if you choose
Dish or Direct instead of TWC these tuners won't be an option.


That's great, but I don't want to use a computer. I just want a
dedicated hardware as the DVR.
--
"Even the sharpest ear cannot hear an ant singing." --Sudanese
/\___/\ Ant(Dude) @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
  #5  
Old February 18th 12, 01:02 AM posted to alt.cable-tv,comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv,rec.video.satellite,rec.video.satellite.misc
Justice Gustine
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Posts: 2
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

On Fri, 17 Feb 2012 12:19:45 -0800, Ant wrote:


We are definitely ordering Time Warner Cable (TWC)'s Road Runner
Internet service since that is the only fastest and cheapest ($52.99 per
month for standard package) since nothing else and/or good is available
(no DSL, no FIOS, satellite and dial-up sucks and are too slow).


Is there a self install option in the home?
Do Best Buy stores offer modems for sale and any free startup offers?

I could say to get cable Internet for $53 and split the coax, run it
to the TV. See what comes in but more and more cable systems are
encrypting everything.

The Windows Media Center suggestion is really one to consider for a
DVR that does not have a monthly fee.
  #6  
Old February 18th 12, 01:39 AM posted to alt.cable-tv,comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv,rec.video.satellite,rec.video.satellite.misc
Ant[_5_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 25
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

On 2/17/2012 5:02 PM PT, Justice Gustine typed:

We are definitely ordering Time Warner Cable (TWC)'s Road Runner
Internet service since that is the only fastest and cheapest ($52.99 per
month for standard package) since nothing else and/or good is available
(no DSL, no FIOS, satellite and dial-up sucks and are too slow).


Is there a self install option in the home?
Do Best Buy stores offer modems for sale and any free startup offers?


Well, I already have TWC RR at the old home. I just need to transfer my
account to the new home.


I could say to get cable Internet for $53 and split the coax, run it
to the TV. See what comes in but more and more cable systems are
encrypting everything.


Isn't that illegal?


The Windows Media Center suggestion is really one to consider for a
DVR that does not have a monthly fee.


I want to avoid using computers and just get a dedicated hardware.
--
"Look not to the windmill's turning while the ant still burrows." --unknown
/\___/\ Ant(Dude) @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
  #7  
Old February 18th 12, 04:59 PM posted to alt.cable-tv,comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv,rec.video.satellite,rec.video.satellite.misc
Ant[_5_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 25
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

On 2/17/2012 11:39 PM PT, D. Stussy typed:

Not if there is a big hill/mountain blocking transmitters. Both
antennaweb and tvfools show yellow and red for them. Previous home
owners couldn't get OTA because of that. See:
http://i.imgur.com/q7LS4.jpg
http://www.tvfool.com/?option=com_wr...330909db0c9 f
http://i.imgur.com/KWz13.gif


I've got 1200 feet of hill in my way of line of sight, and on your list, I
can receive down to KCET, but not KCBS. However, I do have a 57 element
rooftop antenna. KNBC or KTLA will probably be your weakest received major
station without a rooftop antenna. You're about 18.5 miles away while I'm
25 miles distant from the main collection of transmitters. Good luck.


Right, but this antenna has to be twenty floors high to get all channels
(green status). FYI, the house is one floor and right next to the big
hill/small mountain's south side (no view of the mountains (e.g.,
Mount/Mt. Wilson) on the north). The antenna woulkd have to be over this
blockage.
--
"When you have seen one ant, one bird, one tree, you have not seen them
all." --Edward O. Wilson, 1992
/\___/\ Ant(Dude) @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
  #8  
Old February 18th 12, 05:02 PM posted to alt.cable-tv,comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv,rec.video.satellite,rec.video.satellite.misc
Ant[_5_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 25
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

On 2/17/2012 9:21 PM PT, Bill M. typed:

I could say to get cable Internet for $53 and split the coax, run it
to the TV. See what comes in but more and more cable systems are
encrypting everything.


Isn't that illegal?


No.


Interesting. I thought that would be a cable service thief.


You'll most likely only get some of the local channels via clear QAM,
so your TV(s) need to have a QAM tuner.


Hmm, how can I check if these old CRT TVs have them? I know my Sharp 20"
CRT TV, from 1996, has cable analog and antenna support with its coax
input (yep, only one port). I also have an old Toshiba VCR from dotcom days.
--
"Ah. Those club kids did eat those ants up like popcorn." --CSI: Miami
(Wannabe episode; #218)
/\___/\ Ant(Dude) @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
  #9  
Old February 18th 12, 05:53 PM posted to comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv,rec.video.satellite.misc
Patty Winter
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Posts: 3
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?


In article ,
Ant wrote:
On 2/17/2012 9:21 PM PT, Bill M. typed:

You'll most likely only get some of the local channels via clear QAM,
so your TV(s) need to have a QAM tuner.


Hmm, how can I check if these old CRT TVs have them?



They don't. QAM tuners are in digital TVs. (Although as Bill noted,
not in all of them.)

Given the information you've posted (repeatedly) in these groups and
others, it's obvious that your new home will not get OTA without an
impractically tall antenna, so just bite the bullet and do what we've
all suggested: figure out which international channels you really want,
check the channel lineups for the cable and satellite companies that
are available at that location, and subscribe to the service that will
give you those channels. If you're lucky and the channels you want are
available from more than one provider, then you can compare prices on
their websites and take the cheaper/cheapest one.


Patty

  #10  
Old February 18th 12, 06:07 PM posted to alt.cable-tv,comp.dcom.modems.cable,rec.video.cable-tv,rec.video.satellite,rec.video.satellite.misc
Ant[_5_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 25
Default Satellite or cable service for local TV broadcasts?

On 2/18/2012 10:03 AM PT, Bill M. typed:

Um, no. None of them were green. To be green, the antennae would have to
be about twenty floor high.


Not sure why you're holding out for green. Blue and violet are easily
watchable in most cases. Worst case, you may need an antenna in the
attic or on the roof rather than a little 8" loop inside the house.

Do you own the hill, by chance? Put the antenna up on the hill where
it has a clear line of site, add a signal amp, then run coax down the
hill to the house. Split it to the various TV's, as needed. I don't
know how far that is so I can't say if it's practical.


Nope, probably neighbors' on the other side.
--
"We are anthill men upon an anthill world." --Ray Bradbury
/\___/\ Ant(Dude) @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 




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