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captbixley 19-Mar-2014 8:11 PM

OTA NE Seattle
My radar link

I would love to get rid of Comcast and still see my programs on TV. Thirty years ago we gave up on OTA because of poor reception. As I recall KCTS(PBS-9) and KCTS (11) were watchable the rest not so much. As you can see on the plots the I have a hill in my back yard right between me and Queen Ann Hill.

We would like to get ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, ION, KCPQ(FOX), KONG. Is there any reason to think we might have better luck in 2014 than back in the eighties? If so what anttenna etc? Back in the day I was the TV Guru adding tin foil to rabbit ears and stringing wires around the living room to pick up stations - but was then and now I would like to have more than blind luck and intuition to go on - Thanks for all in advance
John B

GroundUrMast 20-Mar-2014 12:21 AM

Welcome John,

The nice thing about the digital format used now, is that if you receive even a marginal signal, the picture and audio will appear perfect. Your experience will be much different than 30 years ago.

When one clicks on a call sign listed on a TV Fool report, you get a profile view of the terrain between the transmitter (on the left side) and the receiving location. The hill is typical of the Seattle terrain. In your case, reception is within reach... Though I would expect to need an outdoor antenna system, mounted high and in a location that minimizes obstruction due to trees.

If I had a peaked roof, I'd consider a 5' tripod + 10' mast. For the actual antenna system I'd use an Antennas Direct DB8E + Antennacraft Y10713 + RCA TVPRAMP1R.

The DB8E has two panels that can aim independently. I'd start with one panel facing Queen Anne and the other, Capitol Hill. Some experimentation would be in order... To optimize the reception of the available real UHF (CH-14 and higher) channels. Point the Y10713 at Capitol Hill and fine tune to maximize the signal for real CH-8, 9 & 11.

KCPQ operates on real channel 13 & 22, so you only need to receive one or the other. I'd try for real CH-22 because the signal on CH-13 comes from Gold Mountain and would be a tough compromise of aiming with the Y10713.

Be sure to configure the TV to scan for 'air' or 'antenna', not 'cable' channels.

captbixley 20-Mar-2014 12:32 AM

Thanks - we do have trees - a large 40 - 50' maple to the east and a large fir 40-50' to the west and then several smaller trees and other big trees in the neighbors yard - I know that impacts the reception - is that a deal killer?

GroundUrMast 20-Mar-2014 12:43 AM

In stormy weather you may suffer some intermittent signal drop outs... I'm surrounded by trees also, but don't have too much trouble.

I've suggested the antennas based on my local knowledge of the Thorton Creek drainage.

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