Why is my UHF reception bad?
December 12, 2003 9:57 AM   Subscribe

Last night I purchased a Television Antenna hoping for an inexpensive way to get local channels without having to pay a monthly bill. The antenna has both VHF and UHF receptors. The VHF (channels 2-13) work great, but the UHF (channels 14+) isn't giving me even a damned glitch of reception. There's no switch on the antenna itself, and there was no owner's manual included. Anyone know what could be going on? Is the fact that I live in a major metropolitan area going to affect my ability to receive UHF channels?
posted by Ufez Jones to Technology (15 answers total)
 
Not knowing how old your tv is... do you have separate vhf & uhf connections on the back, they would have screws if you do. Or just a coaxial connection. You may need an adapter that separates the two. Also is your tv set on "cable" or "antenna" as the new models have that feature. Then too what kind of housing; concrete walls or lot of high rises around. Finally we live in Dallas there is some reasons having cable: no double images which is caused by all the communication systems in the city. Just hook your cable back up when no is looking....or move to LA the perfect place for rabbit ears due it being a basin below the mountains.
PS usually the uhf antenna is the metal loop. Also are you able to get the spanish channels they usually come in w/o an antenna, I would try that first ch25 irrc. {waves at candid camera}
posted by thomcatspike at 10:27 AM on December 12, 2003


Also, and I certainly wouldn't recommend this because it's illegal, but out of academic interest you might want to know that if you have cable modem, you can usually just buy a cable splitter and hook one end to the TV, one to the modem, and get free cable.
posted by Hildago at 10:40 AM on December 12, 2003


double images also refered as "ghosts".
posted by thomcatspike at 10:59 AM on December 12, 2003


Hildago: I think usually is the operative word here. I had a cable modem and TV. When I stopped the TV subscription and switched to a dish, the cable company came out and put a tap on my line at the street that filtered out the TV channels. Just for snicks, I tried to hook my cable to a TV and found no video signal.
posted by SteveInMaine at 11:02 AM on December 12, 2003


tcs: It's a pretty new television (I finally decided to upgrade from my 12-year-old 13"). I didn't see any switches in back for cable/antenna, but maybe I didn't look hard enough. I did check the user manual to the TV though and found absolutely nothing on antennas. I'll check again when I get home from work.

And thanks for the tip, Hildago, but I don't have cable modem. I'm trying to save money for grad school (hence the antenna in the first place). I'll store that away in the back of my mind though.
posted by Ufez Jones at 11:21 AM on December 12, 2003


The cable/antenna switch is in the programming menu on my TV - not a mechanical switch. Have you checked the software based settings to make sure you aren't on cable?
posted by willnot at 11:39 AM on December 12, 2003


A great many TVs these days have a "find the damn channels" mode which will iterate through the various cable and air tuning methods and antenna inputs, automatically flipping through the channels and adding them to your tuning list. I've got a TV that's 7 or 8 years old which does this somewhere in one of its menus. Getting it to do that might make the problem go away, assuming nothing is wrong with the actual connection to the antenna.
posted by majick at 11:54 AM on December 12, 2003


hildago, the cable companies are not that stupid these days. comcast has a filter on my cable internet line - the only thing that gets past it is channel 2 (which is the turner superstation here) 3, and 4.
posted by quonsar at 12:06 PM on December 12, 2003


em>I did check the user manual to the TV though and found absolutely nothing on antennas.

Does your remote have a program or setup button if so that is were the features would be. Also you may have to program the channels in save/cancel. Again the easiest way to see if your UHF is working is turning the channel to Telemundo TV. Good luck.
[looks up ufez address; hooks up cable]
posted by thomcatspike at 12:48 PM on December 12, 2003


hildago, the cable companies are not that stupid these days. Yea they are, they're running their lines through my property that is not an easement(previous owner may have given permission).
posted by thomcatspike at 12:57 PM on December 12, 2003


A great many TVs these days have a "find the damn channels" mode which will iterate through the various cable and air tuning methods and antenna inputs, automatically flipping through the channels and adding them to your tuning list.

I know exactly what you're talking about and I believe my TV has one. I just hadn't considered using it with the absence of cable. Hopefully that'll solve the problem. I'll let you know when I get home (about 2 hours). Many thanks to all. I love AxMe.
posted by Ufez Jones at 1:34 PM on December 12, 2003


As far as the "find the damn channels" thing goes, my TV (probably 8-10 years old) will do this automatically if it's unplugged for more than a couple minutes. You might try that, if you can't find the menu choice that does it.
posted by donnagirl at 1:41 PM on December 12, 2003


The cable/antenna switch is in the programming menu on my TV - not a mechanical switch. Have you checked the software based settings to make sure you aren't on cable?

Bingo. Thanks, willnot! I even caught the end of a Simpsons rerun.
posted by Ufez Jones at 3:36 PM on December 12, 2003


hildago, the cable companies are not that stupid these days. comcast has a filter on my cable internet line - the only thing that gets past it is channel 2 (which is the turner superstation here) 3, and 4.

Q -- I'm through Comcast too, as is my brother's nutty drinking buddy who told me about this fabulous technology in the first place. Works for both us so far. If they try to put a filter on it, they'll have to fight me first.
posted by Hildago at 8:04 PM on December 12, 2003


hildago, the cable companies are not that stupid these days. comcast has a filter on my cable internet line - the only thing that gets past it is channel 2 (which is the turner superstation here) 3, and 4.

Q -- I'm through Comcast too, as is my brother's nutty drinking buddy who told me about this fabulous technology in the first place. Works for both us so far. If they try to put a filter on it, they'll have to fight me first.


My son used to get away with this on Shaw, but they eventually cut him off, too.
posted by timeistight at 2:04 AM on December 13, 2003


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