• Satellite

    by Published on 08-23-2017 06:43 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. TV Antennas,
    3. Satellite



    Oh my, has it been three years already? Back in 2014 I told you all about the contract problems between Raycom Media and DIRECTV. It resulted in 53 stations across the country pulling their programming from DIRECTV for a short while. It took a little back-and-forth before there was a resolution, but at least it's been quiet for a few years while the two companies have been living under a signed contract that keeps stations on the air.

    And then... recently Raycom Media stations have been warning of a possible blackout on DIRECTV again. The stations affected are mostly in the southeast (Here's Raycom's own interactive map) but there are a few outliers all over the country.

    I think we've all seen how these things go. There's a lot of posturing, and then 99% of the time there's a fast resolution "just in time" to save everyone's TV programs. It always makes me a little suspicious when there is so much progress at "the eleventh hour." Why can't they make that much progress a week before and save everyone all the heartache?

    Of course, as usual, it's all about money. Raycom wants more of it, and DIRECTV wants to pay less of it. Broadcast ratings are at historic lows -- I've said it before, it looks like about 90% of the TV audience is watching something else at any given time. Yet greedy broadcasters always want to charge more for their stations to be carried on cable and satellite outlets, and sooner or later it comes to a head.

    Let's hope this turns out to be a non-news story, but if you're tired of companies like Raycom holding your TV programs hostage, why not get a TV antenna? Get all the programs on ABC, CBS, NBC, CW and more for free and never be held hostage by local broadcast carriage disputes!
    by Published on 08-22-2017 04:38 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Satellite
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    Does your family look like this anymore? Of course not. Your TV doesn't look like this anymore either, I'd bet. So why are you still watching television in standard definition?

    If you're still using an old DIRECTV or DISH receiver that doesn't ...
    by Published on 08-22-2017 03:28 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Commercial,
    3. Satellite
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    Not the sort of thing you would normally buy just for fun. This specific TDR will set you back over $2k so you won't find one in the average DIYer's toolkit. In fact, you won't find one in the average commercial installer's tool kit.

    A time domain ...
    by Published on 08-22-2017 11:57 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Satellite,
    3. Online/MobileTV



    This week, our podcaster talks about smart TVs. Smart TVs very easy to love when they are new but some people find it more of a challenge as they age. Listen and learn and then. shop at Solid Signal - Signal Solutions including HDTV Antennas, DIRECTV and DISH Network satellite equipment and home entertainment supplies and accessories for the best in consumer electronics!

    Listen to the podcast your way! Just choose one of the following:
    Option 1: Click on the image above to stream the podcast in your browser.
    Option 2 Search iTunes for "Solid Signal" (click here if you have iTunes on this device)
    Option 3: Click here to download the podcast in MP3 format.
    Option 4: Paste the following link into your favorite podcast program: forums.solidsignal.com/podcasts/solidsignal.xml
    by Published on 08-21-2017 02:08 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. TV Antennas,
    3. Satellite



    Finger tight. Pretty self explanatory, right? It's as tight as you can make something with just your fingers. It's not a precise measurement, obviously, but it's good enough to give you some idea what you're doing.

    For most home theater projects, finger tight is not tight enough. Most folks will connect their coaxial cables just finger tight to their equipment, and that may not quite do it. With RG6 cables of any kind, you should always have a 7/16" wrench handy. You don't have to torque the cable so hard it breaks, but sometimes an eighth-turn can make a difference. When it comes to splitters, finger-tight will only get you about halfway there and the wrench should go the rest of the way. You should be able to feel some resistance when you tighten with a wrench; don't go past that point or you'll break the connector.

    The same goes for grounding screws and blocks. Use a screwdriver to tighten the ground wire down, otherwise it may not make complete contact and that means it's not very useful.

    On the other hand, if you're assembling an antenna or anything made of aluminum, anything with a wingnut, finger tight is plenty tight. Overtightening a bolt on an antenna will tear right through it or at least deform it. There's no point in that. Unless the instructions say so, don't ever use a wrench to assemble an antenna, although you should use one to mount it.
    by Published on 08-16-2017 05:17 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Satellite



    It's a fact. DIRECTV's satellite at the 119 location is going out of service within two years. This will mean that pretty much all standard definition service will go with it, since the content on the 119 satellite will take the place on standard definition content on one of the 101 satellites.

    All English-language HD programs have already moved off the 119 satellite, and what's left is basically local programming for a few markets around the country. The only thing left is SD programming, so even if you're in one of those cities where the 119 satellite is in use, you still don't need it if all you want is HD.

    Every year, we revise our list of cities that require the use of the Slimline-5 dish. The Slimline-5 dish is harder to aim and harder to keep aimed. The preferred dish for almost the entire country is the Slimline-3 dish, or if you want 4K, the Reverse Band 3 Slimline dish. Chances are you don't need the Slimline-5 dish.

    If you do have it, it won't hurt you for now but at some point it's going to stop working and you'll have to deal with that. For now, take a look at our newly-revised list of markets that still receive programming from the 119 satellite location. That way you'll be able to figure things out for yourself!
    by Published on 08-15-2017 02:57 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Satellite,
    3. Online/MobileTV
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    That's right, I said it.

    I didn't just beat around the bush like SlashGear or LightReading. Those sites want to warn you about a possible future where practically every program you want will require its own streaming service. You'll be paying for Disney, CBS, ABC, whatever. You're going to pay to get the one show you ...
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