Hi I'm new and have a cable tv question
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    Default Hi I'm new and have a cable tv question

    Hi,

    I'm new here. I'm in the process of moving to a different apartment and to make a long story short the rent will be $200 more. I am wondering if it's still possible to get local tv channels with an antenna (rabbit ears etc) on my TV. I spend almost $75 per month on cable and I don't even have time to watch it, but I thought the days of analogue tv were over. I won't really miss cable and it would alleviate much of the difference in rent. Thanks for any suggestions.

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    Hi and welcome to the village!

    Around here we have what is called a convertor box...cost about $30 at Walmart. With the convertor box and rabbit ears we are able to pick up ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox and some local channels.....more than enough for us. I don't know when the last time was we turned on our tv! We watch most of the programs online on the laptops so no need for tv.

    Hope that helps!




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    It depends where you are.

    We can't get anything over the airwaves. Our only option for TV is satellite service. I'm not sure getting TV via computer is even an option with DSL, either.

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    Registered User imagine's Avatar
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    Here is a website shows free digitsl sations you should get in an area http://transition.fcc.gov/mb/engineering/dtvmaps/
    Last edited by imagine; 03-09-2014 at 10:37 PM.

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    We use Netflix. $7.99 per month, but you have to have wireless internet.

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    I don't have wireless internet for my Netflix. Depending on the type of tv, you may be able to get away with a digital antenna. My tv has a built in tuner, so I only needed an antenna to get the over-the-air channels.

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    Technically you should be able to get local channels for free. I've heard complaints about the reception.

    There's a lot of free programming on the web, too. Look up your favorite show, it probably has a website where you can stream episodes. There's a lot of documentaries on YouTube.
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    Hulu is free if you have internet.
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    I ended up with basic cable and use the internet for any other shows I might want to watch.

    The reception I get from a converter box and antennae is awful. I think a lot has to do with the apartment building and the power lines near me. You could ask around if anyone has it in your area to get a better idea if it would work. Or make sure any equipment you purchase can be returned if opened.

    Definitely a good way to save money if you can stop paying for cable tv.

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    Stations like: AntennaWeb.com can help you figure out how many channels you may get for free with bunny ears. I always think it worth the time when new to an area and not in a cable TV contract to purchase a couple rabbit ears units (if you have a flat screen TV already, otherwise you need converter box) from an easy-return retailer like Walmart and see what kind of free TV you can get over-the-air with bunny ears. If you cannot get a good TV signal with bunny ears due to too much interference, just return them and try more expensive model if you want.

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    I get a lot of channels where I live- but some are in spanish and I think one in vietnamese - at least 6 probably - and I haven't watched tv in years unless I'm at a friend's - I use my tv to watch dvds and sometimes stuff on youtube

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    Quote Originally Posted by rdl89 View Post
    Hi,

    I'm new here. I'm in the process of moving to a different apartment and to make a long story short the rent will be $200 more. I am wondering if it's still possible to get local tv channels with an antenna (rabbit ears etc) on my TV. I spend almost $75 per month on cable and I don't even have time to watch it, but I thought the days of analogue tv were over. I won't really miss cable and it would alleviate much of the difference in rent. Thanks for any suggestions.
    I might be jumping to conclusions here but I'd imagine if you are living in an area with a lot of apartments, you're in a major metropolitan area. If that's the case, there's a good chance you can do pretty well with over-the-air channels. If you're not too boxed in by other buildings, it's possible to get up to 40+ free channels (based in my experience in Chicago and Washington D.C.) though of course you won't be interested in the vast majority of them. Currently we're living in Washington D.C. and we get the local affiliates of Fox, ABC, NBC, CBS, USA and two different PBS stations (both of which are made up of multiple channels). There's also a smattering of channels that play old TV shows and movies that we sometimes look at. The other 30 or so channels are advertising, foreign language, etc.

    Since over-the-air signals are digital now, you will need a convertor box if you have an older TV. These were subsidized by the government in the form of rebates a couple of years ago when TV signals made the switch to digital, but I believe you'd have to pay full price now, which could be $30 to $50. If you have a newer TV, you probably don't need a convertor box. First thing you should try is just switching its cable source to "antenna" in the menu and try out the TV's internal antenna. It'll take 5 or 10 minutes to detect the channels in your area. If you're getting Fox, ABC, etc after that, you're in business. If you're not, or you're getting poor reception, it might be a good idea to try purchasing a real antenna. But, if your apartment is really poorly situated for reception, it might not improve much with the use of an antenna. A roof-mounted antenna is ideal (those old "aerials" still work in the digital era) but might not be possible if you're renting.

    I'd say it's definitely worth your while to try this out before signing up for cable at your new place.

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