How To Improve TV Reception?

Not getting digital signal. New antenna doesn’t work. Amplifier doesn’t help. Getting desperate. Lost ability to write complete sentences. Please help.

Try moving the antenna. If you can, move the TV and antenna to a higher floor to see if that helps. Try a different antenna or different receiver, to see if one or the other is the problem. Give us more information on where you live and where the TV stations are.

I live in an apartment that is partly below ground. I have no higher floor to move the antenna to.

I live in north east Philadelphia and should get 3, 6, 10, 12, 17, 35, 48, 57, and 65.

Instead, the indicator shows a digital signal strength of no bars out of a possible (I haven’t counted)


I have just the one tv and two antennae- the old crappy one and the one I bought at Radio Shack yesterday which does not work as well as the old one.

Get cable? :slight_smile:

But seriously, your reception is all going to depend on the best clear shot you can get of the signal. Higher is better, but barring that, you can try moving the antenna all around your apartment to see if there are any strong spots.

Make sure that your TV tuner is set to Antenna as opposed to Cable (or whatever your TV calls the setting)

When I got my new HDTV, I had the same problem. With the old TVs you could always tell because the tuner would only go up to 13 on antenna mode. Not so with the new tuners…

Use to find out if the channels in your area are UHF and/or VHF. Then check that your new antenna is made for the band your channels are on.

What’s the difference between your old and new antenna? You say the old one works better?

I went back to Radio Shack and bought the $34.99 antenna.

It works better than either my old antenna or the useless $19.99 model. But the reception is still poor. It improved when I found a sweet spot about a foot above my television. I’ll wait a few days and see how it goes.

In some areas DTV is just impossible to get. I live in Chicago 3 miles NW of Sears Tower (where the TV transmitters are) and I went from 16 analog stations to ZERO digital TV stations.

I had to get cable. You may have too as well.

Try these first. Your antenna should be a silver sensor. Rabbit Ears only work for VHF frequencies (Channels 2 -13) so you need either a Silver Sensor or a “Loop” for your rabbit ears.

Also remember most TV stations are not broadcasting on the channel they used for analog. For instance in Philly WPVI is currently broadcasting it’s digital signal on Channel 64 but they use a thing called PSIP to create a “virtual channel 6.” So your digital tuner reads the actual channel 64 as channel 6. So to get WPVI you need a UHF antenna like a Silver Sensor.

To complicate matters a bit after the digital transition is complete in June of this year, channels 52- 69 will be taken away from TV and given to other things like cell phones and wireless internet. So WPVI will move BACK to channel 6, and then in June you’ll need a VHF antenna to get WPVI.

Also there is no such thing as a digital or HDTV antenna, so don’t fall for that marketing gimick. Digital signals (HDTV is a kind of digital signal) use the same antennas that analog TV uses. They just encode the signal differently, but the antenna is the same.

I would also look at AVS Forum and go the message board for OTA (over the air) TV in Philadelphia. (There are boards for any market, the site design is, IMHO, busy so it’s a bit hard to look through the site, but the boards are there. Just keep on navigating through it.)

Hi DocCathode.
Not too sure how digital signals work in the US, but in Aus, if you’re getting analogue, you should easily get digital reception. That being said, how was your analogue reception? The advantage of analogue reception, is that even if the signal is weak (lets say below 50%), you will still see the picture… it may be fuzzy, but usually this isn’t noticable with a low resolution picture. When didgital signal is poor , it just refuses to show.

This has been my experience. Things that you may try. The quality of the aerial cord (as I found) is very important. I’m not a tech-head, and usually bought cords on the cheap, but when I invested in a proper quad-shield cord, things improved - alot. Oh, and since we’re talking internal aerials, rabit ears (at least in my experience), DO help. If I set up my antenae (which has a loop), and the rabbit ears are down, I get bad reception, the moment I extend them… perfect.

AND one more thing. Spend a bit more on an antenna that has an powered amplifier… this helps as well. (when you buy an antenna/aerial, make sure the shop will let you return it if it fails your expectations - this way, you don’t waste money if it doesnt work for you)

PS… I may not be a tech-head, but I do like my TV watching… and over the years the above have been proven right for me.