• 06-10-2011, 04:04 PM
    Smokey
    HDTV Antenna Makers Enjoys Triple Digit Growth
    Because of the current economic climate, we are seeing a lot of consumers cut both cable and satellite TV services. Market research and consulting firm Convergence Consulting Group says that an estimated 1.6 million people will cancel pay TV services, such as cable and satellite, by the end of this year.

    However many of the people cutting that pay TV tether are still enjoying real, live TV, and in full high definition quality.

    According to Antennas Direct, antenna sales are exploding. The antenna manufacturer says that they are currently enjoying their eighth consecutive year of double-digit growth. After claiming $8.7 million in 2010, the company says they've experienced a whopping 225 percent increase in sales in the first quarter of 2011. That puts them on track for $21 million in 2011.

    "Experts have been telling me for 8 years that OTA was dead, yet we have maintained 110 percent compound annual growth since we started," says Richard Schneider, president of Antennas Direct. "This year we are on pace to liberate nearly 1 million Americans from an unhappy relationship with their pay TV provider while putting over $1.1B annually back in the pockets of our customers," adds Schneider.

    http://www.bigpicturebigsound.com/HD...the-Cord.shtml
  • 06-11-2011, 01:40 PM
    Hyfi
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Smokey View Post
    Because of the current economic climate, we are seeing a lot of consumers cut both cable and satellite TV services. Market research and consulting firm Convergence Consulting Group says that an estimated 1.6 million people will cancel pay TV services, such as cable and satellite, by the end of this year.

    However many of the people cutting that pay TV tether are still enjoying real, live TV, and in full high definition quality.

    According to Antennas Direct, antenna sales are exploding. The antenna manufacturer says that they are currently enjoying their eighth consecutive year of double-digit growth. After claiming $8.7 million in 2010, the company says they've experienced a whopping 225 percent increase in sales in the first quarter of 2011. That puts them on track for $21 million in 2011.

    "Experts have been telling me for 8 years that OTA was dead, yet we have maintained 110 percent compound annual growth since we started," says Richard Schneider, president of Antennas Direct. "This year we are on pace to liberate nearly 1 million Americans from an unhappy relationship with their pay TV provider while putting over $1.1B annually back in the pockets of our customers," adds Schneider.

    http://www.bigpicturebigsound.com/HD...the-Cord.shtml

    And here is what these guys are not telling you.

    There is really no such thing as an HDTV antenna. It is exactly the same old UHF/VHF/FM antenna it always was. The old ones pick up the stations no different than one marked as exclusive HDTV.

    I have never had any form of Pay TV and from my first HD Flat screen 10 or more years ago, I have been using Rat Shack or similar brand roof antennas. I get any HD broadcast that is near. I get all the digital and sub channels. Any sporting event is as clear as anyone elses Cable.

    I actually bought into this gimmick when I purchased my last antenna and guess what. I should have just left the old one up and replace the rotor.
  • 06-11-2011, 03:37 PM
    Sir Terrence the Terrible
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    And here is what these guys are not telling you.

    There is really no such thing as an HDTV antenna. It is exactly the same old UHF/VHF/FM antenna it always was. The old ones pick up the stations no different than one marked as exclusive HDTV.

    I have never had any form of Pay TV and from my first HD Flat screen 10 or more years ago, I have been using Rat Shack or similar brand roof antennas. I get any HD broadcast that is near. I get all the digital and sub channels. Any sporting event is as clear as anyone elses Cable.

    I actually bought into this gimmick when I purchased my last antenna and guess what. I should have just left the old one up and replace the rotor.

    Hyfi,
    You hit the nail on the head. Good ole rabbit eared antennae are the best performing when it comes to HDTV.

    Can anyone see how mis-marketing can be such a boon to manufacturers?
  • 06-11-2011, 07:01 PM
    Smokey
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    And here is what these guys are not telling you.

    There is really no such thing as an HDTV antenna. It is exactly the same old UHF/VHF/FM antenna it always was. The old ones pick up the stations no different than one marked as exclusive HDTV.

    In general terms that is true. But since most digital stations have moved to UHF band, one really need an antenna that is specifically design for UHF band. Which mean they will be smaller than traditional antennas that recieve VHF band also.

    Practically any piece of wire will pick up TV station if station is strong enough. But to have gain, less interference and directionality, an antenna specific to band is required as there is no such a thing as "all purpose " antenna :)

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Sir TT
    Good ole rabbit eared antennae are the best performing when it comes to HDTV.

    You might get better results with Bow Tie antenna (or variation of it) as Rabbit Ears were primarily designed for VHF bands (telscopic rods are long). Ofcourse it still can be used for UHF bands (digital TV), but have to keep the telescopic rod very short.

    I made my own [short] HDTV antenna in dipole configuration which is very directional. And living on a third floor does help the reception :)
  • 06-12-2011, 03:42 AM
    Hyfi
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Smokey View Post



    You might get better results with Bow Tie antenna (or variation of it) as Rabbit Ears were primarily designed for VHF bands (telscopic rods are long). Ofcourse it still can be used for UHF bands (digital TV), but have to keep the telescopic rod very short.

    I made my own [short] HDTV antenna in dipole configuration which is very directional. And living on a third floor does help the reception :)

    I have one tv in my gym not hooked to the roof. I use a telescoping rod antenna, extended all the way, hanging on the wall and connected to a digital converter box. No problems getting all the same stations as the roof antenna does. Also my newer roof antenna that was marked as HDTV looks no different than the previous one and is the same size and shape.
  • 06-12-2011, 11:50 AM
    Sir Terrence the Terrible
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Smokey View Post


    You might get better results with Bow Tie antenna (or variation of it) as Rabbit Ears were primarily designed for VHF bands (telscopic rods are long). Ofcourse it still can be used for UHF bands (digital TV), but have to keep the telescopic rod very short.

    I made my own [short] HDTV antenna in dipole configuration which is very directional. And living on a third floor does help the reception :)

    Smoke,
    According to Broadcast Magazine, their field report say that Rabbit ears have the best performance on both UHF and VHF as long as the viewer is within 30 or so miles of the broadcast tower. This is for indoor antenna's only.
  • 06-12-2011, 02:50 PM
    pixelthis
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    And here is what these guys are not telling you.

    There is really no such thing as an HDTV antenna. It is exactly the same old UHF/VHF/FM antenna it always was. The old ones pick up the stations no different than one marked as exclusive HDTV.

    I have never had any form of Pay TV and from my first HD Flat screen 10 or more years ago, I have been using Rat Shack or similar brand roof antennas. I get any HD broadcast that is near. I get all the digital and sub channels. Any sporting event is as clear as anyone elses Cable.

    I actually bought into this gimmick when I purchased my last antenna and guess what. I should have just left the old one up and replace the rotor.

    BEFORE cable and sat got aboard with HD I used an UHF antenna I purchased from RADIO shack for forty bucks, mounted on a 30ft mast.
    RECENTLY I went shopping for a new HDTV antenna for my work site, and got a surprise. Couldn't find one of the classic
    aluminum (and cheap) antennas, just a wide choice of the amplified rabbit ears type, and very expensive outdoors type.
    SEEMS like the old fashioned type is being phased out,
    and replaced with antennas not much different, just labeled "HD"
    and with a huge price markup. I wondered about this, and
    their sudden popularity explains a lot.
    EVEN if you have sat, etc, they charge extra for local stations,
    you can save with an antenna for picking those up, btw.:1:
  • 06-12-2011, 07:15 PM
    Smokey
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    I have one tv in my gym not hooked to the roof. I use a telescoping rod antenna, extended all the way, hanging on the wall and connected to a digital converter box. No problems getting all the same stations as the roof antenna does.

    They probably pick up the same stations, but signal strenght from roof antenna will be much higher. If you have low power digital tv station or have one that is further away, roof antenna will outperform indoor antenna (assuming using the rotor to change antenna direction).

    Quote:

    Also my newer roof antenna that was marked as HDTV looks no different than the previous one and is the same size and shape.
    Then what you have is VHF/UHF antenna which technically still can be called "HD". But if you want antenna that is specificaly for UHF band which most digital stations are located, it should looks like this (note that antenna elements are much shorter):

    http://www.antennasdirect.com/store/...43XG-large.jpghttp://www.antennasdirect.com/store/images/P/91xg.jpghttp://www.antennasdirect.com/store/images/P/sr15.jpg

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Sir TT
    Smoke,
    According to Broadcast Magazine, their field report say that Rabbit ears have the best performance on both UHF and VHF as long as the viewer is within 30 or so miles of the broadcast tower. This is for indoor antenna's only.

    That is true for VHF band, but don't know how it could be true for UHF band. I am sure the editor that wrote that article know that there are better design indoor antenna than what rabbit ears can offer.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pixelthis
    RECENTLY I went shopping for a new HDTV antenna for my work site, and got a surprise. Couldn't find one of the classic aluminum (and cheap) antennas.

    Since most HD channel moved to UHF band, there is no need for those long element antennas that can stretch over 8 feet. The elements are much shorter now as shown in the picture.
  • 06-13-2011, 08:17 AM
    bobsticks
    Let the king of frugality speak...
    No debate here. I'm sure if anyone would have had the time to study this at length it would be Smokey, his knowledge acquired in the ten-plus years he spent researching before making an HDTV purchase :hand:





    Love ya, Smokester :ciappa:
  • 06-13-2011, 11:05 AM
    Sir Terrence the Terrible
    Quote:

    That is true for VHF band, but don't know how it could be true for UHF band. I am sure the editor that wrote that article know that there are better design indoor antenna than what rabbit ears can offer.
    Nope, they tested every antenna on the market at various locations, and found the rabbit ears were much more reliable at picking up all signals from different locations. The flat UHF antenna's were the least reliable they found.

    Even the head Engineer at our local ABC station here is the bay area confirms that rabbit ears are the best all around antenna's as long as you are not further than 20-30 miles from the broadcast tower. I was surprised myself when I heard his comments, and then read it in Broadcast Magazine.
  • 06-13-2011, 01:13 PM
    pixelthis
    The "best" antenna is a V shape UHF, mounted outside.
    THIS is from experience. There is no way that an indoor
    antenna can beat an outdoor, outdoor is always going to be
    better.
    If you have more than one major city nearby a rotator would
    be a big help also..
    Your antenna would need a ground, if you have a sat dish
    you can use the same one, and the antenna should not touch
    metal, it will kill the signal (connect the mast to ground).
    No shortcuts for antennas, great way to get killed.:1:
  • 06-13-2011, 01:54 PM
    Sir Terrence the Terrible
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pixelthis View Post
    The "best" antenna is a V shape UHF, mounted outside.
    THIS is from experience. There is no way that an indoor
    antenna can beat an outdoor, outdoor is always going to be
    better.
    If you have more than one major city nearby a rotator would
    be a big help also..
    Your antenna would need a ground, if you have a sat dish
    you can use the same one, and the antenna should not touch
    metal, it will kill the signal (connect the mast to ground).
    No shortcuts for antennas, great way to get killed.:1:

    My comments were based on indoor antenna's only idiot......
  • 06-13-2011, 06:47 PM
    Smokey
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bobsticks View Post
    No debate here. I'm sure if anyone would have had the time to study this at length it would be Smokey, his knowledge acquired in the ten-plus years he spent researching before making an HDTV purchase :hand:

    Heheheheh, there is little bit of truth to that. I used to be big amateur/shortwave radio fan. So been reading on this stuff and it is not so complicated as long as we follow few simple physics/electrical rules.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Sir TT
    Nope, they tested every antenna on the market at various locations, and found the rabbit ears were much more reliable at picking up all signals from different locations. The flat UHF antenna's were the least reliable they found.

    Man, wish I could have read that article to see if they change the position of base or lenght of rod to get different stations. Going by law of physics that state "To recieve different frequecny band more efficiency, different antenna lenght is required", you see how that test might not be technically valid.

    For example if we buy a indoor UHF antenna and hang it right by the ceiling (or attic), the higher antenna height itself will make the antenna perform better since we tend to put rabbit ears on top of the Tv or stand (lower height).

    Quote:

    Even the head Engineer at our local ABC station here is the bay area confirms that rabbit ears are the best all around antenna's as long as you are not further than 20-30 miles from the broadcast tower.
    I don't know Sir TT, but 30 miles might be wishfull thinking. Even in analog TV days, the rabbit ears had trouble picking up stations that were further away (remember snowy pictures :D). With digital stations in UHF band, the signal will be more of "Line of sight" whcih mean the signal area coverage will be less than analog signal.
  • 06-14-2011, 01:39 PM
    pixelthis
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Smokey View Post
    Heheheheh, there is little bit of truth to that. I used to be big amateur/shortwave radio fan. So been reading on this stuff and it is not so complicated as long as we follow few simple physics/electrical rules.



    Man, wish I could have read that article to see if they change the position of base or lenght of rod to get different stations. Going by law of physics that state "To recieve different frequecny band more efficiency, different antenna lenght is required", you see how that test might not be technically valid.

    For example if we buy a indoor UHF antenna and hang it right by the ceiling (or attic), the higher antenna height itself will make the antenna perform better since we tend to put rabbit ears on top of the Tv or stand (lower height).



    I don't know Sir TT, but 30 miles might be wishfull thinking. Even in analog TV days, the rabbit ears had trouble picking up stations that were further away (remember snowy pictures :D). With digital stations in UHF band, the signal will be more of "Line of sight" whcih mean the signal area coverage will be less than analog signal.

    WHERE I "work" I put a ten dollar "rabbit ears" with a round UHF
    on the roof, it is now reliably picking up stations 30-40 miles away.
    Of COURSE uhf is highly directional, but the signal disperses as
    distance increases, widens as well as weakens.
    But with proper placement and a strong signal even rabbit ears will "reach" 30 miles with no problem.:1:
  • 06-14-2011, 04:45 PM
    Woochifer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Smokey View Post
    Because of the current economic climate, we are seeing a lot of consumers cut both cable and satellite TV services. Market research and consulting firm Convergence Consulting Group says that an estimated 1.6 million people will cancel pay TV services, such as cable and satellite, by the end of this year.

    However many of the people cutting that pay TV tether are still enjoying real, live TV, and in full high definition quality.

    According to Antennas Direct, antenna sales are exploding. The antenna manufacturer says that they are currently enjoying their eighth consecutive year of double-digit growth. After claiming $8.7 million in 2010, the company says they've experienced a whopping 225 percent increase in sales in the first quarter of 2011. That puts them on track for $21 million in 2011.

    "Experts have been telling me for 8 years that OTA was dead, yet we have maintained 110 percent compound annual growth since we started," says Richard Schneider, president of Antennas Direct. "This year we are on pace to liberate nearly 1 million Americans from an unhappy relationship with their pay TV provider while putting over $1.1B annually back in the pockets of our customers," adds Schneider.

    http://www.bigpicturebigsound.com/HD...the-Cord.shtml

    Do you even realize how tiny that sales level is? Triple digit gains are easy to achieve when the actual sales level is already at a minimum.

    Part of the reason why antenna sales are up is because even after the digital transition, many TV stations are still moving their transmitter locations and/or frequencies, which necessitates upgrading the antenna in many cases. There are still about 15 million US households that rely only on OTA signals. Assuming that the average antenna costs ~$50, that $22 million in antenna sales equals 440,000 antennas sold -- or about 3% of existing OTA antenna users.

    And even if those antennas are all sold to "cord cutters" that's still less than 0.5% of existing pay TV subscribers. Not very impressive either way.

    It gets ridiculous when every microscopic uptick in growth, whether it's OTA antennas or streaming, is attributed to "cord cutting." Attitudinal surveys like the one cited in this consultant's report are notoriously inaccurate at predicting actual consumer behavior. Just because someone says that they will cancel their cable or satellite service doesn't mean that they will actually do it. This has been proven time after time.

    Cord cutting is a myth. Notice that EVERY single article that talks about how "we are seeing a lot of consumers cut both cable and satellite TV services" does not cite any actual market trends? It's always some new survey where people say they will do something, not market data about what they actually do.

    All that I ever see are the blatherings about how cable subscription rates are down -- OH, MUST BE CORD CUTTING! Of course, none of those articles mention that cable has been losing subscribers for nearly a decade. And none of those articles mention that the gains in IPTV and satellite subscriptions make up for the losses.

    http://www.fool.com/investing/genera...ng-a-myth.aspx

    Quote:

    Market leader Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA ) continues to shed video customers -- 39,000 during the first three months of this year -- but weakness in cable has been more than offset by gains for ambitiously marketed AT&T (NYSE: T ) U-verse and Verizon (NYSE: VZ ) FiOS. Satellite television has also picked up new couch potatoes.
  • 06-15-2011, 01:03 PM
    pixelthis
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Woochifer View Post
    Do you even realize how tiny that sales level is? Triple digit gains are easy to achieve when the actual sales level is already at a minimum.

    Part of the reason why antenna sales are up is because even after the digital transition, many TV stations are still moving their transmitter locations and/or frequencies, which necessitates upgrading the antenna in many cases. There are still about 15 million US households that rely only on OTA signals. Assuming that the average antenna costs ~$50, that $22 million in antenna sales equals 440,000 antennas sold -- or about 3% of existing OTA antenna users.

    And even if those antennas are all sold to "cord cutters" that's still less than 0.5% of existing pay TV subscribers. Not very impressive either way.

    It gets ridiculous when every microscopic uptick in growth, whether it's OTA antennas or streaming, is attributed to "cord cutting." Attitudinal surveys like the one cited in this consultant's report are notoriously inaccurate at predicting actual consumer behavior. Just because someone says that they will cancel their cable or satellite service doesn't mean that they will actually do it. This has been proven time after time.

    Cord cutting is a myth. Notice that EVERY single article that talks about how "we are seeing a lot of consumers cut both cable and satellite TV services" does not cite any actual market trends? It's always some new survey where people say they will do something, not market data about what they actually do.

    All that I ever see are the blatherings about how cable subscription rates are down -- OH, MUST BE CORD CUTTING! Of course, none of those articles mention that cable has been losing subscribers for nearly a decade. And none of those articles mention that the gains in IPTV and satellite subscriptions make up for the losses.

    http://www.fool.com/investing/genera...ng-a-myth.aspx

    CORD "cutting" is no myth.
    But the cutters are not getting their tv fix ota, but otn, or net.
    A lot nowadays watch tv over the net.:1:
  • 06-15-2011, 04:36 PM
    Woochifer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pixelthis View Post
    CORD "cutting" is no myth.
    But the cutters are not getting their tv fix ota, but otn, or net.
    A lot nowadays watch tv over the net.:1:

    Every article that actually looks at the hard numbers concludes that cord cutting is a myth. If cord cutting has actually taken hold, then pay TV adoption rates would be going down. That has not happened. Pay TV subscription rates remain around 80%, which the same number as cell phone usage.

    Most of these "cord cutter" articles are presumptions written by techies who have little to no understanding of how average consumers consume media, and never subscribed to cable in the first place.

    For one thing, very few of them even bother to mention sports, yet that's by far the largest lock-in for pay TV. The geeks that write these articles don't watch sports. The ones that do mention sports almost always get the story wrong, because while they mention MLB, NBA, NFL, and NHL streaming games online with a subscription, they neglect to mention the blackouts of local pro teams that protect the local regional sports networks. Cable/satellite providers know that if they lock up the sports content, they've already locked up half of their subscribers.

    All of the tracking data that measures actual viewing patterns indicates that average daily TV viewing time remains over 5 hours, while average viewing time for all forms of networked video combined remains less than 20 minutes a day.

    Even though Netflix adoption is running high, its programming options compete more with video stores and PPV than cable. And Netflix was able to ramp up its numbers because their streaming service costs only $8/month. But, with their content costs going through the roof, it's only a matter of time before they increase prices or go to tiered plans.
  • 06-16-2011, 04:58 PM
    Smokey
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Sir TT
    Even the head Engineer at our local ABC station here is the bay area confirms that rabbit ears are the best all around antenna's as long as you are not further than 20-30 miles from the broadcast tower.

    Sir TT, look at this digital station's suggestion for recieving their [UHF] signal and what type of antenna to use:

    "If using an indoor antenna be sure to use one that has a "loop" or "bow-tie" style. The V-type, typically called rabbit ears, are good for VHF (channels 2-13); however, for UHF channels (channels 14-69) the addition of a "loop" or "bowtie" style antenna will greatly increase your reception."

    http://kjlr-tv.com/reception.htm

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Woochifer View Post
    There are still about 15 million US households that rely only on OTA signals. Assuming that the average antenna costs ~$50, that $22 million in antenna sales equals 440,000 antennas sold -- or about 3% of existing OTA antenna users.

    And even if those antennas are all sold to "cord cutters" that's still less than 0.5% of existing pay TV subscribers. Not very impressive either way.

    What about those that already have cable/satellite?

    Cable and satellite do not carry all of local channels, especially the sub channels. I get 24 local channels, and local Comcast only carrry less than half of channels and non of sub ones. Alot of people get antenna to pick up thoese local stations, and PQ will also be much better than local channels from Comcast or Satellite.
  • 06-16-2011, 05:32 PM
    Woochifer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Smokey View Post
    What about those that already have cable/satellite?

    Cable and satellite do not carry all of local channels, especially the sub channels. I get 24 local channels, and local Comcast only carrry less than half of channels and non of sub ones. Alot of people get antenna to pick up thoese local stations, and PQ will also be much better than local channels from Comcast or Satellite.

    That would vary by location. Comcast in my neighborhood does carry most of the digital subchannels if you connect the cable to the DTV tuner. At my parents' house, Cox does not provide any of the DTV feeds on their basic service. So, they use a UHF antenna to pick up the subchannels and the HD feeds.

    The OTA channels do look better using an antenna (I can pick up most of the channels with just an old pair of rabbit ears), but if I watch the OTA feed, then I can no longer use the DVR or receive 5.1 audio (my TV will only output a two-channel audio signal, even with the digital audio link). So, I'm fine with sacrificing a little bit of picture quality to use the DVR functions and 5.1 audio.
  • 06-18-2011, 01:47 PM
    pixelthis
    1 Attachment(s)
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Woochifer View Post
    That would vary by location. Comcast in my neighborhood does carry most of the digital subchannels if you connect the cable to the DTV tuner. At my parents' house, Cox does not provide any of the DTV feeds on their basic service. So, they use a UHF antenna to pick up the subchannels and the HD feeds.

    The OTA channels do look better using an antenna (I can pick up most of the channels with just an old pair of rabbit ears), but if I watch the OTA feed, then I can no longer use the DVR or receive 5.1 audio (my TV will only output a two-channel audio signal, even with the digital audio link). So, I'm fine with sacrificing a little bit of picture quality to use the DVR functions and 5.1 audio.

    I am fine with cable at the house for the same reasons, not to mention where I LIVE stations are fifty to seventy miles away.
    But not true where I work, and even a moderate signal strenght
    produces a picture that should make Comcast ashamed.
    I know they carry a lot of content, but heck, OTA is very
    good.:1: