TVElectronics (Large)

Trouble Using TV Antennas

I am trying to get my TVs to work on old fashion rabbit ear antennas and it is not working. I purchased the least expensive Phillips at Wal-mart and then a better one for $29.00. I can barely pick up ABC, PBS is ok and NBC is very snowy. Can someone give me advice on the type of antennae to use in a rural town?


I live 72 miles from where the stations are located and I am surrounded by mountains. Also, I have coupons for the digital converter box but two Wal-marts that I have checked with are out of stock. I don't think this should make that much of a difference on reception at this time, do you? Thanks so much in advance for your advice.

Angela from Alabama

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By Harry (Guest Post)
August 24, 20080 found this helpful

You may need an outside antenna attached to the roof or a dish antenna. Also look in to phone company suppling cable through the phone line.

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By (Guest Post)
August 24, 20080 found this helpful

Reception can vary in different parts of the room. Try moving your tv, much easier than moving mountains!LOL

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August 25, 20080 found this helpful

I am by no means an expert at this but have done research about it ... I currently pay for cable but the price is going to skyrocket once everything goes digital in February, at least with my cable company, so I plan to cancel my cable and return my cable box on that date ...


This is where a leap of faith comes in because a converter box, even used in conjunction with the antenna, might not work properly until the day of conversion ... (some stations won't be switching until last ditch minute)

I took advantage of a government program that sends out, on request, a card for $40.00 off a digital converter box and once you receive it, it will be stated which makes and models are covered and which stores in your area where you can purchase but the card expires after so many days of receiving and only a certain amount of the cards are being given out ...
or call (888)388-2009 ...

Also, the antenna recommended to me by someone is a Philips Silver digital PHDTV1 ... I ended up purchasing both the box and the antenna at Radio Shack before my card expired ...


I have to wait til February to test but I have enough faith that it will work and work better than our, soon to be defunct, UHF days and won't have to pay for cable for basic channels anymore ;-)

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August 25, 20080 found this helpful

We just this week installed the digital boxes at our lake home, which is also 70+ miles from the TV stations' antennas and in the mountains. The difference may be that we are higher than the transmitter sites, but as soon as we hooked up the boxes, the pictures were wonderful! Even with rabbit ears, they were cable clear -- or did not come it at all! The man at Radio Shack said that digital TV is all or nothing -- there's no snowy picture. My husband finallly got an outside antenna put up, and we discovered channels we hadn't known existed. NBC and PBS stations have three channels each! I think this will become more common because the digital bandwidth is narrow so they can split it up.


My sister-in-law in Texas is bringing us another box because she says they get nothing also. I'm tempted to drop cable service in town and get a few more boxes. If you can get an outside antenna, it may help, but why don't you check with your neighbors to see if they've had any success with the digital boxes before you spend the money. Oh, it may be your local stations aren't digital yet. Our ABC station just went digital this week. You'll get nothing if they're still analog. They'll have to be by February with a few exceptions, but ours are working wonderfully now -- after 30+ years of fuzzy TV here, it seems almost a miracle!

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August 26, 20080 found this helpful

Listen to the person with the dtv system. I purchased it and use it with my rabbit ears and I get crystal clear channels that I never got before.


Try it, you won't be sorry.

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August 27, 20080 found this helpful

Well WalMart here in MO we have several WK's and they only get about 50 boxes a week and are gone in 20 mins and will not hold them back. My friend had coupon and it went out of date!

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August 30, 20080 found this helpful

Finding the digital converter box is a problem. I work at a major retail store, and on the rare occasion that they actually come in, we only get 5 or 6 at a time, and they are almost immediately gone. The only thing is that the government is actually putting out word that if the store doesn't have them, they can order them for you NOT TRUE! We are unable to order them, we get what's shipped period.


You're in a bad spot to get reception. Good luck.

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