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Thread: Over the Air in Calgary - Cutting out Cable

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    Default Over the Air in Calgary - Cutting out Cable

    Hey Guys,

    Just moved into a new place and did the standard Shaw Cable and Internet thing. Now I'm finding that I really don't watch very much TV at all and that all the channels which have something I would be interested in watching - I don't get unless I buy an expensive package which would be a waste anyways as I might watch only about 10 hours of non local TV a month.

    Lots of people are going towards the OTA solution, and I decided to bit and bought an antenna from Monoprice for about $30 bucks. I did a quick plug in and test and got CBC and OMNI, but the quality is amazing - I am shocked at how good the picture looks. Way better than the HD from Shaw.

    I have it indoors as I don't have the option to mount it outdoors as I am in an North Facing condo, but its right against the window.

    Anyone else running an OTA solution? I wish I could get some more channels (at least Global/CTV), but this will do for now I think.
    Originally posted by arian_ma
    your stomach is full of sulfuric acid

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    Interested in this as well. Thinking the best route is an American Netflix subscription, Hulu and the OTA as mentioned. Just need to figure out:

    1. How to set up an American NetFlix account.
    2. How to set up an American Hulu account.
    3. What is the best antenna to purchase?

    Looking at this up to date antenna review:
    http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/bes...-hdtv-antenna/

    This is the top reviewed antenna at $100: http://www.hdfrequency.com/products.html

    This is the $22 MonoPrice route:
    http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_i...seq=1&format=2

    Might bump my internet speed package from Telus (contract up in August 2014), so my savings will be reduced a bit overall.
    Last edited by CanmoreOrLess; 04-18-2014 at 04:56 PM.

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    Originally posted by CanmoreOrLess
    Interested in this as well. Thinking the best route is an American Netflix subscription, Hulu and the OTA as mentioned. Just need to figure out:

    1. How to set up an American NetFlix account.
    2. How to set up an American Hulu account.
    3. What is the best antenna to purchase?

    Looking at this up to date antenna review:
    http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/bes...-hdtv-antenna/

    This is the top reviewed antenna at $100: http://www.hdfrequency.com/products.html

    This is the $22 MonoPrice route:
    http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_i...1&format=2

    Might bump my internet speed package from Telus (contract up in August 2014), so my savings will be reduced a bit overall.
    I am also going to pump my Internet to the 25 level (I'm currently at the 10) on Shaw.

    I purchased this for a year, https://www.privateinternetaccess.com/ to get the VPN so I can actually choose my Netflix to US or Canada. I have it going to my receiver through my PC. I have to figure out if its actually sending 5.1 through the HDMI, but so far its been quite good. I use torrents for anything new, its generally pretty quick and I don't have the need to see TV right when it comes out.

    I'm rocking the monoprice cheapy and CBC is super clear for the game on right now, better than the hardwired cable. looks really great. I'm actually enjoying watching the Habs.
    Originally posted by arian_ma
    your stomach is full of sulfuric acid

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    What do we do about recording of live TV? I can't stand watching commercials as well as being tied to a solid time to watch a program live.

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    Originally posted by CanmoreOrLess
    What do we do about recording of live TV? I can't stand watching commercials as well as being tied to a solid time to watch a program live.
    http://www.memoryexpress.com/Products/MX45635

    You're welcome Only issue with this is that you have to have the cable box/tv channel set in advance to the channel you want to record.

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    I'm using this antenna:

    http://lifehacker.com/five-best-indo...855/+alanhenry

    Calgary is not the best for OTA TV though.
    I can currently see about 5 channels.

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    Originally posted by ryanallan
    I'm using this antenna:

    http://lifehacker.com/five-best-indo...855/+alanhenry

    Calgary is not the best for OTA TV though.
    I can currently see about 5 channels.
    Are those 5 channels clear and consistent? What part of town are you in and where did you put the antenna?

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    Wading through this info-overload: http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=81

    Discussion of Calgary reception results: http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/show...=81023&page=86
    Last edited by CanmoreOrLess; 04-18-2014 at 09:16 PM.

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    I've got a simple unpowered OTA antenna & PC setup for my tv content. The hardware literally paid itself off in 5 days since I used to spend with ~$90/mo with bell. Should have cancelled years ago.

    I get 6 channels in the Calgary area:
    CBRT(cbc)
    CityTV
    CFCN(ctv)
    CICT(global)
    OMNI
    and some mindless bible drivel that I removed from the listing.

    I still don't really watch tv, but at least I'm not paying a thousand bucks a year to subsidize bullshit programming.

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    I've got it all figured out now... then I remembered the World Cup is on this summer.... the project has now been mothballed until the late summer.

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    Originally posted by CanmoreOrLess
    I've got it all figured out now... then I remembered the World Cup is on this summer.... the project has now been mothballed until the late summer.
    That's on CBC so OTA should cover this.

    Anyone tried OTA in the basement?

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    you should be able to receive CH 70 - BNN through the regular coax cable from the wall. No box required, just cable directly from wall to TV. Shaw guy told me it's the only channel they make available so they can test tv signal (or something like that).

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    Originally posted by CanmoreOrLess
    I've got it all figured out now... then I remembered the World Cup is on this summer.... the project has now been mothballed until the late summer.
    You should be able to get quality streams, especially if your running a vpn.
    Originally posted by arian_ma
    your stomach is full of sulfuric acid

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    Originally posted by CanmoreOrLess
    [B]Wading through this info-overload: http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=81
    Probably one of the best sources of info for OTA. Maybe too much info
    Last edited by The_Penguin; 04-19-2014 at 06:13 PM.

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    I use this one and get 6 HD channels clearly and consistently.

    http://www.bestbuy.ca/en-CA/product/...eef396e8c1en02

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    Originally posted by Ven
    Are those 5 channels clear and consistent? What part of town are you in and where did you put the antenna?
    I have it on the wall behind the TV.
    I'm actually getting 6 channels. The same as those mentioned above. They are all clear. I was surprised at how good the picture quality was actually.
    One interesting thing I have noticed is that whenever a car drives past my house the signal drops a bit. I'm in the NW, near SAIT.

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    For anyone too lazy to look it up, or anyone looking for a simple starting point, you need to pint your antenna towards signal hill (Canada Olympic Park). That's where all the broadcasts originate in Calgary.
    If you have a clear line-of-sight to the ski jump, you should be good-to-go. Some areas of north-central Calgary are blocked by Nose Hill.
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    I almost shat myself after eating way too much at lunch with @killramos so ya, we can start the diaper thread now.

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    Originally posted by CanmoreOrLess
    I've got it all figured out now... then I remembered the World Cup is on this summer.... the project has now been mothballed until the late summer.
    I've been wanting to drop my cable too lately, just haven't pulled the trigger. Really I don't want all that much TV in my life or my kids like.

    I believe you can pay for the World Cup package from TSN and you can stream all the games, same kind of this as NHL Gamecenter. With Gamecenter if you have the VPN then you should be able to watch any game you want as well as US Netflix.
    Besides that, I can get the few shows I want from torrents, so why do I pay for all this crap on Shaw. What pisses me off is that I only watch like 5 channels, I pay $180 a month to Shaw to phone, internet, and TV ... and then I go to a channel that I want to watch, and lo and behold I don't get that channel! Like, how much do I have pay to actaully get ALL those sh1t channels?

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    i have cut the satalite last year ($90 a month) and the only thing i miss is daily local news. im gonna hit up this ota in Edmonton this week and see what i can get.
    and torrents suck. Usenet is where its at.
    also use unblock-us at $5 month to get us netflix and nhl gamecenter with no blackouts.
    nhl game center is $150 a year in canada. if you use you vpn or unblock-us it thinks your in usa so gamecenter is only $99 ayear. that $50 savings from using unblockus pays for the whole year of unblockus
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    Originally posted by ryanallan

    I have it on the wall behind the TV.
    I'm actually getting 6 channels. The same as those mentioned above. They are all clear. I was surprised at how good the picture quality was actually.
    One interesting thing I have noticed is that whenever a car drives past my house the signal drops a bit. I'm in the NW, near SAIT.
    And that's what so many people don't realize - that the OTA signals are of a much higher quality then anything that Shaw/TELUS can get to you over their infrastructure.

    My brother, who lives on an acreage WSW of Carstairs, is getting amazing OTA using a 30+ year old antenna I gave to him - people buying these new fangled OTA antennas are spending a lot of money on something that could be replaced by a cheap garage sale find. Of course, if your'e living in an apartment or are concerned about asthetics, then these old, big antennas might not be ideal. If you want an optimum signal though, they are the way to go.

    Pic similar to the antenna he's using...
    Last edited by speedog; 04-20-2014 at 10:07 AM.

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