Toledo Talk

Advice from those getting broadcast HDTV

I've been getting local channels on an older tv using a converter box and an inexpensive antenna that I actually have setting on top of a 6-foot aluminum ladder on my back porch. (Hey! It works and has for 2 years!) I just bought a 29" Vizio HDTV. When I attached the antenna on the ladder to the new set, I got no signal. Added to this, I'm moving from my house into an apartment this weekend and very much want to avoid cable if possible.

Anybody out there really good at this type of thing who can recommend an inside antenna that really truly works and/or has suggestions for me to get the new set going for local stations?


created by hippiechick on Jan 28, 2014 at 03:40:46 pm     Comments: 20

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You have to have the new TV scan for the channels before they will display.

posted by cujo on Jan 28, 2014 at 03:50:29 pm     #  

I just hooked up my older Visio to an antenna on Saturday. I had to change it from Cable to Antenna, then scan for channels.

posted by JoeyGee on Jan 28, 2014 at 04:12:11 pm     #  

Thanks. I'll give that a try.

posted by hippiechick on Jan 28, 2014 at 04:23:57 pm     #  

I've used Solid Signal for years, since the HD switchover and they have always been fair, informative, and I never got the feeling that they were trying to oversell me something.

posted by mennell on Jan 28, 2014 at 04:29:26 pm     #   1 person liked this

and on that note, I have the Solid Signal HD-BLADE Indoor Digital Flat Indoor TV Antenna (HDBLADE) and it pulls in all the local stations as well as some Detroit and Lima stations. Under $30.

posted by mennell on Jan 28, 2014 at 04:31:14 pm     #  

Thanks. I'll give that a try.

posted by hippiechick on Jan 28, 2014 at 04:36:59 pm     #  

I have a giant outdoor TV antenna on a 20 foot pole. Picks up stations as far as 60 miles away. Picture quality is better than cable or satellite.

posted by someguy23475 on Jan 28, 2014 at 05:25:23 pm     #  

We have an HD indoor antenna up at our cottage (Devils Lake) and we get crystal clear channels from Toledo. I can't for the life of me think of the name of the brand but if it comes to me I will let you know.

posted by stooks on Jan 28, 2014 at 05:40:32 pm     #  

That Solid Signal Blade looks exactly like the Mohu Leaf - which I installed for my SIL up in Canton, MI - indoors, middle of the room. She gets every Detroit channel there is - crystal clear.

posted by Foodie on Jan 28, 2014 at 06:46:57 pm     #  

I deal with radio waves a fair amount at work, not TV but a wave is a wave ... I've found that altitude and line-of-sight wins for TV. I've been using a DIY project antenna for several years, follow one of these links, they work great:

posted by noiseboy on Jan 28, 2014 at 06:54:59 pm     #  

In the summer, my tower (20ft) over in Indiana, I pick up as far away as Chicago, Indianapolis ,etc......depending on weather and clouds. I get more Michigan stations than Ohio

posted by Hoops on Jan 28, 2014 at 07:53:01 pm     #  

I've had good luck with this model from Terk indoors.

posted by MrGlass419 on Jan 28, 2014 at 10:14:15 pm     #  

We got a cheap indoor antenna from Radio Shack. It didn't work (we followed all instructions, repeatedly) and so we took it back. Inside the store was a more expensive model which we bought and it's worked fine for several years. Bonus: it looks like a spaceship and I enjoy having it on a shelf in the room.

I have to say, your original aluminum ladder idea is one I'll keep in mind! I love weird little homemade fixes like that.

posted by viola on Jan 29, 2014 at 08:08:10 am     #  

I suggest an amplified signal antenna for indoors. It plugs into wall and amplifies the incoming signal

posted by bucknut on Jan 29, 2014 at 07:48:53 pm     #  

If you really want great reception, you must go with an old fashioned outdoor antenna. Indoor antennas can work, depending upon how many walls the digital signal has to penetrate to get to your TV. Some homes are ok; others (built like a fortified bunker) are not.

When it becomes warm again here on Hoth, I'm going to install an outdoor antenna on my mom's house. Fairly simple deal as long as you're not freaked out by working on a two story roof...

posted by oldhometown on Jan 29, 2014 at 08:25:25 pm     #  

Anyone have experience with the antennas given out free by Buckeye....? Worth getting?

posted by luvtoledo on Jan 29, 2014 at 09:44:07 pm     #  

My free Buckeye antenna is getting me around 18 channels in the home office in Oregon, Ohio.

posted by Hoops on Jan 30, 2014 at 09:25:55 am     #  

Lifehacker just posted an article today on the best OTA Indoor Antennas.


might give you some ideas.

posted by mennell on Jan 30, 2014 at 02:10:12 pm     #  

The Wirecutter had a review of antennas this week.

posted by Spaceace on Jan 30, 2014 at 02:18:15 pm     #  

A reminder- if you are going the outdoor route, get either a VHF/UHF combo or a separate antenna for each band. Some of these so called digital antenna are only for UHF. Also, the channel numbers and their actual frequency may be different.

For Toledo, 11, 13, and 40 are on VHF, as well as 2 from Detroit and 9 from Windsor. I believe WLIO Lima is also on VHF, if you live south enough. There's also 10 out of Lansing if you live far enough NW of the city.

Everything else is UHF.

posted by someguy23475 on Jan 31, 2014 at 11:36:30 am     #