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Thursday, September 24, 2020
 Solid Signal  HDTV Broadcast Information
Solid Signal - Antenna Help - HDTV Broadcast Information

American television broadcasters have collectively spent billions of dollars to build out the nation´s HDTV infrastructure. New cameras, transmitters and advanced switchgear are now in place so that you can watch glorious HD free of charge. All that your HD capable TV needs is an antenna and possibly a tuner.

With HDTV it is important to note that reception is an all or nothing proposition. Since you will be receiving a digital signal it will be either a perfect picture or a blank screen. A high gain antenna optimized for receiving the frequencies in which these digital signals are broadcast will give you your best chance for success.

High definition television (HDTV) is the highest form of digital television. It has five times more detail than traditional analog televisions and provides an enhanced viewing experience with a wider screen and a crisper, more colorful, higher resolution picture. It also typically comes with premium Dolby Digital surround sound to provide for a complete movie theater experience.

Where is HDTV available?

Since being launched in the United States in 1998, more and more stations have been converting to broadcasting HDTV programming. There are currently 1491 stations in 211 markets in the U.S. and Puerto Rico broadcasting in digital formats, which serve over 99% of US TV Households. Over 120 new stations were added in 2004 alone and now 89% of the U.S. TV households are in markets with five or more DTV stations.

What will I be able to watch in HDTV?

It is important to note that not all shows are currently broadcast in HDTV. For the most part, broadcasters are currently offering the majority of their primetime lineups and major sporting events in high definition and continue to add more HDTV programming on a regular basis.

How do I get HDTV?

Digital signals can be broadcast over the air or transmitted by cable or satellite. Regardless of how you will receive them, you will first need an HDTV tuner. Most cable providers will sell or lease these tuners as part of their monthly service. The more cost effective option, however, is to choose from one of the options below.

The three main methods are:
Digital Over-the-Air Tuner:  Also known as a set top box or ATSC tuner. Currently these sell for $40-$200. This method will give you the greatest flexibility as technology changes.
TV set with Built-in Tuner:  Many HDTVs have the digital or ATSC tuner built in to the set. Note: if your set says "HD Ready" you will need to purchase a tuner.
HD Satellite Receiver/Tuner:  Satellite companies offer HD Satellite tuners with an over the air tuner built into the device. An over the air antenna can be an excellent complement to these HD satellite tuners for receiving local HDTV programming.
Are all methods of receiving HDTV signals equal?

No! There are very legitimate reasons that people prefer using antennas to cable for receiving local HDTV broadcasts.

A quality Off-Air Television Antenna will offer:

The best picture quality:  Cable and satellite providers have bandwidth limitations. Because of this, they must often resort to data compression or other techniques that compromise the image quality and don´t provide the full benefit of HD programming. Off air antennas are the only method for receiving HDTV in the resolution that the network intended it to be broadcast.
Full carriage of all your local channels:  The bandwidth limitations also limit the number of HDTV channels that cable and satellite providers can carry and many do not offer the local channels that their customers desire. Also contract disagreements between local cable operators and local broadcasters can mean that major networks may not be available in your area.
The Lowest Cost:  Aside from the costs to purchase and install the over the air antenna, receiving HDTV is totally free. There will never be a fee for local off air channels. In many communities, cable companies often force customers into their top programming tier at the cost of up to $100 a month just for the "privilege" of getting your HD locals..
So what kind of antenna should I buy?

There is no magic HDTV antenna that will work in every location. You will have to choose one primarily based on your distance and direction from the transmitters. For more information on this, please read our Choosing the Best HDTV Antenna or call us at 1-866-374-4625.

Solid Signal has endeavored to ensure that the American public receives the highest quality, over-the-air digital television signals. We have been leading the charge for advanced over-the-air digital television through the use of reliable and effective digital antennas.

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Signal Group LLC
22285 Roethel Dr.
Novi, MI 48375


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