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TV channels with just an antenna in Cinco Ranch area

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I am getting very tired of high Comcast cable bills plus I hear more charges are on the way this year.

What channels would I get using:

Set-top antenna per TV?

Rooftop/attic antenna for all TV's?

I would like to see list of standard and HD channels. If I can get the channels that my wife watches, it may well be worth it.

If sonmeone is doing this, couple questions.

Brand model antenna that works well in Katy. I have four TV's......two are HD capable.

What DVR set-top box to buy that can automatically record channels? Will use for 2 TV's.

I would still need to pay for internet access $50.......but I can accept that.

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TV? I about to cancel comcast and just get free tv over the airwaves. I dont need 348962390 channels as I rarely watch tv anyway.

Internet? Oplink.

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When my wife and I watch tv, we just watch it on the computer via Hulu. We pay for the internet and nothing more. We had the apartment complex's native services, but the channel selection sucked and the service was spotty. Considering we rarely actually used the TV as a TV, we turned it into a larger screen computer monitor.

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Go to the TV Guide website to display a list of over-the-air broadcast signals in Houston. You will not be able to receive all of these since some are low power.

Channel 8 did a good series of programs before the switchover on all the problems associated with the new technology. A lot of that information is here including links to websites with information about choosing an antenna.

You also should talk to any neighbors, if no one from your neighborhood posts here, about their experiences if they've stuck with OTA TV.

I haven't had cable for years and don't watch a lot of tv. I have 2 converters, 3 rabbit ears. My best reception comes with a pair of rabbit ears that I've had (and my parents before me) since the 60s, but I live a lot closer to the Missouri City antenna farms than you do.

Edit to add: most of the low power signals you will not be able to receive will be religious or foreign language or may have repeaters closer to you that you can receive.

Edited by brucesw

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I'm going cable-free in my next place. I don't see the point of paying for cable TV when 90% of what ends up on my DVR is from broadcast stations anyway (Simpsons, Masterpiece Mystery, etc...). The only thing I'll miss is Mythbusters, but that's only about a dozen shows a year. The other 350 episodes are reruns.

Don't spend a buttload of money on an antenna. No matter what's written on the box, it's just a piece of wire encased in plastic. There was an interesting article somewhere last fall (probably in the New York Times) about the return of the coat hangar antenna. It seems that in much of Manhattan you get better reception with a bent coat hangar than with one of the fancy Best Buy antennae.

Reminds me of a kid when the rabbit ears would inevitably break off.

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In theory, on a perfect day you should be able to receive most of these:

KPXB-TV 5 DT LIC CONROE TX US BLCDT-20040406AAD - 58835 9.5 kW 555. m ION MEDIA HOUSTON LICENSE, INC.

KUHT 9 DT LIC HOUSTON TX US BLEDT-20020801ABF - 69269 8.4 kW 564. m UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON SYSTEM

KTXH 19 DT LIC HOUSTON TX US BLCDT-20020514AAE - 51569 421. kW 596. m FOX TELEVISION STATIONS, INC.

KVQT-LP 21 - TX LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTTL-20051207AGO - 57187 150. kW 0. m C. DOWEN JOHNSON

KETH-TV 24 DS STA HOUSTON TX US BDSTA-20030227AFT - 12895 16.8 kW 579. m COMMUNITY EDUCATIONAL TELEVISION, INC.

KVDO-LP 25 LD CP HOUSTON TX US BDFCDTL-20081125AVY - 21183 10. kW 0. m FAR EASTERN TELECASTERS

KRIV 27 DX LIC HOUSTON TX US BXLCDT-20070402BHR - 22204 150. kW 536. m FOX TELEVISION STATIONS, INC.

KHMV-CA 28 CA LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTTA-20061214ABD - 66790 108. kW 0. m PAPPAS TELECASTING OF THE GULF COAST, L.P. (A DE LTD P/SHIP)

KCVH-LP 30 Z TX LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTTL-20060526AAV - 7079 150. kW 0. m DAIJ MEDIA, LLC

KHOU 31 DT LIC HOUSTON TX US BLCDT-19981109KF - 34529 759. kW 551. m KHOU-TV, INC.

KJIB-LP 31 LD CP HOUSTON TX US BDISDTL-20090303AAK - 21184 15. kW 0. m FAR EASTERN TELECASTERS

KTRK-TV 32 DT LIC HOUSTON TX US BLCDT-20000215AAP - 35675 797. kW 562. m KTRK TELEVISION, INC.

KBPX-LP 33 - TX LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTT-19920623JD - 17746 34.3 kW 0. m ION MEDIA LPTV, INC.

KUVM-CA 34 CA LIC DEWALT TX US BLTTA-20070918ABR - 13200 115. kW 0. m CLUB COMMUNICATIONS

KPRC-TV 35 DT LIC HOUSTON TX US BLCDT-19991022ABJ - 53117 1000. kW 585. m POST-NEWSWEEK STATIONS, HOUSTON, INC.

KFTH-DT 36 DT LIC ALVIN TX US BLCDT-20050527BEM - 60537 1000. kW 579. m TELEFUTURA HOUSTON LLC

KIAH 38 DT LIC HOUSTON TX US BLCDT-20021022AAH - 23394 1000. kW 582. m KIAH INC., DEBTOR-IN-POSSESSION

KAZH 41 DT LIC BAYTOWN TX US BLCDT-20081016ACF - 70492 1000. kW 580. m TTBG/KAZH LICENSE SUB, LLC

KHLM-LD 43 LD LIC HOUSTON TX US BLDTL-20090630AEZ - 57189 15. kW 0. m LOTUS TV OF HOUSTON LLC

KZJL 44 DS STA HOUSTON TX US BDSTA-20030324ADZ - 69531 25.5 kW 461.2 m KZJL LICENSE LLC

KBPX-LP 46 LD CP HOUSTON TX US BDISDTL-20090601AUO - 17746 15. kW 0. m ION MEDIA LPTV, INC.

KTMD 47 0 NM GRANT GALVESTON TX US BPRM-20020425ABY - 136904 5010. kW 611. m TELEMUNDO OF GALVESTON-HOUSTON LICENSE CORP.

KTMD 48 DS STA GALVESTON TX US BDSTA-20021002ADK - 64984 1000. kW 597.1 m NBC TELEMUNDO LICENSE CO.

KNWS-TV 52 DS STA KATY TX US BDSTA-20020930ACG - 31870 12.5 kW 308. m JOHNSON BROADCASTING, INC.

KVVV-LP 53 - TX LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTTL-20070531AFY - 6690 150. kW 0. m PAPPAS TELECASTING OF THE GULF COAST, L.P.

Also, there's an application for a new station on channel 7. Looks like it's going to be religious.

KUHT has been approved to move from 9 to 8.

KHOU has been granted permission to move from 31 to 11, then KJIB (currently on channel 5 in Clear Lake) will take the channel 31 space.

KTRK has been granted permission to move from 32 to 13.

KVVV has been granted permission to move from 53 to 15.

KVDO (channel 25) might not be on the air yet.

KRIV has been granted permission to move from 27 to 26.

KHTX has been granted permission to move from 30 on 25 in Huntsville, but it doesn't look like the signal will make it much past Conroe.

You MIGHT get KLTJ out of Galveston, but probably not.

There's an application for new analog stations on channel 25 and 29 in Clear Lake from the same people who run KJIB.

There's an application for a new analog channel 30 (K30DN) in Freeport.

KZHO-LD (channel 40) in Lake Jackson is barely visible to people outside of Lake Jackson now, but has an application in for a MASSIVE power increase on channel 39 that will put it on par with KHOU, KTRK, etc...

KVUM-LD in Victoria has a construction permit for a huge power increase that will make it visible to most of Houston.

Actually, if all of the applications for new channels in Victoria were granted, that tiny town would have 29 TV stations. Why? So that once they're established, they can increase their power, move transmitter location, or otherwise inch into the Houston market. And they don't even have to blanket the city -- just get into enough of it for the cable company to be required by law to carry the signal.

I suspect the same thing is happening in Beaumont, too (Beaumont-licensed stations trying to push into the Houston market).

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I am getting very tired of high Comcast cable bills plus I hear more charges are on the way this year.

What channels would I get using:

Set-top antenna per TV?

Rooftop/attic antenna for all TV's?

I would like to see list of standard and HD channels. If I can get the channels that my wife watches, it may well be worth it.

If sonmeone is doing this, couple questions.

Brand model antenna that works well in Katy. I have four TV's......two are HD capable.

What DVR set-top box to buy that can automatically record channels? Will use for 2 TV's.

I would still need to pay for internet access $50.......but I can accept that.

You can also check out this website - www.antennaweb.org

It tells you what channels you can get and which antenna would be best suited for you.

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Actually, if all of the applications for new channels in Victoria were granted, that tiny town would have 29 TV stations. Why? So that once they're established, they can increase their power, move transmitter location, or otherwise inch into the Houston market. And they don't even have to blanket the city -- just get into enough of it for the cable company to be required by law to carry the signal.

I suspect the same thing is happening in Beaumont, too (Beaumont-licensed stations trying to push into the Houston market).

Wow! What about in Bryan/College Station?

Editor I also want to ask will the Bryan/College Station Area ever be able to pick up Houston's NBC, CBS, Fox? We get Parts of ABC in addition to our own, and up into about 10 years ago we got Houston's WB (now CW). (We also get PBS Houston in addition to our own and FOX Sports Houston). But I wanted to know will it come to a point where we could get the local Houston Channels?

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Wow! What about in Bryan/College Station?

Editor I also want to ask will the Bryan/College Station Area ever be able to pick up Houston's NBC, CBS, Fox? We get Parts of ABC in addition to our own, and up into about 10 years ago we got Houston's WB (now CW). (We also get PBS Houston in addition to our own and FOX Sports Houston). But I wanted to know will it come to a point where we could get the local Houston Channels?

No. Your local channels are Bryan/College Station channels. Those are the channels you're supposed to watch. Houston local channels are for people who live in the Houston market. If you want Houston channels, move to Houston.

The country is divided into about 260 regions, each with its own local channels. Sometimes stations bleed across from one market to another, but with digital TV it's a little easier to corral these things.

If you have a cable company that spans markets then sometimes there can be overlap on the local cable system. Or if your local market doesn't have a particular network affiliate, then one can be imported from another market.

If you were able to watch Houston stations, then what happens to your local stations? They go out of business. So do your local businesses that can't afford to advertise on Houston stations to reach the tiny slice of audience coming from B/CS. One of the purposes of dividing the nation into markets is to develop a thriving media ecosystem. The other is to provide local service. In the five years I worked in Houston TV we only went to B/CS for a news story once (A&M bonfire collapse). The Houston stations are obligated by their licenses and economics to serve Houston, not Bryan/College Station, or Tyler, or El Campo, or any other small town that might crave a big city's attention.

It's like newspapers or any other local media -- If you support it, it grows and becomes better. If you ridicule or ignore it, it dies.

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No. Your local channels are Bryan/College Station channels. Those are the channels you're supposed to watch. Houston local channels are for people who live in the Houston market. If you want Houston channels, move to Houston.

The country is divided into about 260 regions, each with its own local channels. Sometimes stations bleed across from one market to another, but with digital TV it's a little easier to corral these things.

If you have a cable company that spans markets then sometimes there can be overlap on the local cable system. Or if your local market doesn't have a particular network affiliate, then one can be imported from another market.

If you were able to watch Houston stations, then what happens to your local stations? They go out of business. So do your local businesses that can't afford to advertise on Houston stations to reach the tiny slice of audience coming from B/CS. One of the purposes of dividing the nation into markets is to develop a thriving media ecosystem. The other is to provide local service. In the five years I worked in Houston TV we only went to B/CS for a news story once (A&M bonfire collapse). The Houston stations are obligated by their licenses and economics to serve Houston, not Bryan/College Station, or Tyler, or El Campo, or any other small town that might crave a big city's attention.

It's like newspapers or any other local media -- If you support it, it grows and becomes better. If you ridicule or ignore it, it dies.

Ok, I get it. But you must know that the reason that I prefer the Houston stations is because of quality. Our stations here are not very good. Pretty much all are split into "fake" channels for the B/CS market from the Waco market. Like our KMAY 23 is really KCEN 9 out of the Waco/Temple/Killen market. abc40 is really abc25 Waco and goes blank all the time. So its not that I would prefer Houston channels because its Houston, its the quality. The news would surley be more interesting though.

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Ok, I get it. But you must know that the reason that I prefer the Houston stations is because of quality. Our stations here are not very good. Pretty much all are split into "fake" channels for the B/CS market from the Waco market. Like our KMAY 23 is really KCEN 9 out of the Waco/Temple/Killen market. abc40 is really abc25 Waco and goes blank all the time. So its not that I would prefer Houston channels because its Houston, its the quality. The news would surley be more interesting though.

If you want your local channels to be better quality, then watch them more. More ratings mean more money for the TV station and more money it can spend on better equipment and people.

i understand your frustration about "fake" channels. I've lived in markets like that before. Heck, I even worked at a station like that (WFRV/Green Bay, Wisconsin was the main, and WJMN/Escanaba, Michigan was the satellite) In many of them, they will eventually produce local news for the satellite station when economic conditions warrant. WSAZ/Huntington, West Virginia does this. It carries its main newscast on channel 3 in Huntington, but half way through, the channel 23 satellite in Charleston switches to a local Charleston newscast.

If the stations in Waco can make enough money, they'll put people and resources into B/CS, because that will make the station even more money. But they need a certain level of viewership to do so. People watching Houston stations doesn't make it happen.

As for the ABC going black, that's a complicated issue, but comes down to the fact that ABC doesn't have a B/CS station, and that's ABC's fault. There are applications for new stations in your area on channels 3, 14, 15, 16, 17, 20, 30, 41, 49, and 51. Maybe one of them will pick up the full-time ABC affiliation for your area.

For now, all I can recommend is supporting the one commercial local station you have - KBTX (channel 50).

Interestingly, KBTX has a permit to increase its signal enough to take it into Houston:

Current special temporary authority:

DS676778.jpg

Construction permit:

DT1248979.jpg

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Well after a little more understanding of what my wife watches, I am pretty much screwed. USA, TNT, Lifetime are all cable exclusive channels.

I do have the option of AT&T Uverse in my area.......my neighbor has it so will talk with him.

It always seems dificult to really understand the actual monthly costs when changing to another system.

Note: I heard you can contact Comcast and discuss locking in a monthly price for a 1-2 yr contract. Anyone doing this?

I am paying about $150 for internet, digital package, 1 HD dvr, 1 std dvr. No pay channels or sports packages.

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We got rid of DVR and Comcast cable stations during the summer. I really miss Disc and Espn.

We still pay them to send us the network stations through.

While i detest having to waste $20 a month to get the network stations... they should be free dammit... I'd hate even more forking over $120 to Best Buy for two analog converter boxes that I would like to think I wouldn't still need a year from now.

I thought after the big switch that over the air analog reception was a thing of the past. But with your list, editor, you're saying there are Fox and CBS affiliates still broadcasting analog ?

My wife and I started watching shows on Hulu this past Fall. Hulu has it's issues though....the uncertainty with Hulu being bought out by Comcast and show's future availabilty, the fact that they don't carry full episodes of all the shows i love, and the required delay from live broadcast.

They don't carry 24 episodes. And I'm sure as hell not going to wait 3-4 days for the Lost premiere to make it online.... That would be hell.

Maybe in another month after I see all my premieres I'll pull the trigger.

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Change of plans... Called to cancel the cable portion of my bill.

Becasue i have a doubleplay promotion, my cheap internet would actually go up... I'd be paying more for just internet that I am now for internet/network tv

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I thought after the big switch that over the air analog reception was a thing of the past. But with your list, editor, you're saying there are Fox and CBS affiliates still broadcasting analog ?

Only full-power stations were required to go digital. Low power stations are allowed to remain analog for now if they want, but they're also required to get out of the way of digital stations. For some reason, there are a LOT of low-power stations in Texas. Maybe because outside of the big six cities people are more scattered.

The only analogs I see on my list are:

KVQT-LP 21 - TX LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTTL-20051207AGO - 57187 150. kW 0. m C. DOWEN JOHNSON

KHMV-CA 28 CA LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTTA-20061214ABD - 66790 108. kW 0. m PAPPAS TELECASTING OF THE GULF COAST, L.P. (A DE LTD P/SHIP)

KCVH-LP 30 Z TX LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTTL-20060526AAV - 7079 150. kW 0. m DAIJ MEDIA, LLC

KBPX-LP 33 - TX LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTT-19920623JD - 17746 34.3 kW 0. m ION MEDIA LPTV, INC.

KUVM-CA 34 CA LIC DEWALT TX US BLTTA-20070918ABR - 13200 115. kW 0. m CLUB COMMUNICATIONS

KVVV-LP 53 - TX LIC HOUSTON TX US BLTTL-20070531AFY - 6690 150. kW 0. m PAPPAS TELECASTING OF THE GULF COAST, L.P.

These are all low-power stations. CA=Community, LP=Low Power. Both mean the same thing. The FCC's been changing a lot of terminology over the last few years and you end up with some screwy call letters here and there.

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Change of plans... Called to cancel the cable portion of my bill.

Becasue i have a doubleplay promotion, my cheap internet would actually go up... I'd be paying more for just internet that I am now for internet/network tv

...or so they tell you. Check the internet for other rates. Also ask your neighbors and people on HAIF what they're paying. The people on the phone rarely give you the lowest rate.

Also, check with senior citizens organizations. Often utilities are required to have special super-cheap service for old people. You don't have to be old, and the utilities don't have to tell you they exist. For example, where I live the cheapest land line you can find on the internet or by calling the phone company is something like $24.99/month. But if you ask for the special rate (Elder Saver or some stupid name like that) they have to hook you up at the $4.99/month.

My mother has something like this. She was paying $150/month for cable, internet, and phone. It turns out her cable company (Time Warner, I think) has a rate that gives her 1.5 megabit internet (plenty fast for an old lady), all the basic cable channels, and the phone with no long distance for around $60/month. But the cable company wouldn't tell her about it. She had to find out from her neighbors.

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I bought a digital to analog converter box on Ebay and an antenna at BigLots in order to watch free antenna TV.  My analog TV is not digital and needs the converter box to pick up the digital signals and covert them to analog signals.  I paid $30 and prices vary for new or used on Ebay.  I can receive over 40 channels; it can pick up up network and local channels like CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox, ION, KUBE and all the spanish stations like Univision and Telemundo and even Vietnamese channels along with religious programming channels.   FREE TV, no cable bills!

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We moved last August and used that opportunity to cut DirecTV. We don't watch it much anyway. We now watch Netflix, NBC shows online and YouTube and play more board games etc. We couldn't be happier.

 

If I can get a box that can record from broadcast channels like cable companies DVRs do, I'd be set for life.

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If I can get a box that can record from broadcast channels like cable companies DVRs do, I'd be set for life.

You can get a TiVo from eBay that already has lifetime service paid for  (or buy a new one and pay monthly fee or lifetime fee) that will record OTA.....

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JUST DOWNLOAD "FREETELLY" ON TO YOUR COMPUTER OR STREAMING DEVICE.

THIS IS A GOOD PLACE TO START IF YOU WANT TO "CUT THE CORD"

OF COARSE YOU HAVE TO HAVE A DECENT INTERNET CONNECTION!

 

HAVE FUN!!!!

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