We’ve had ours for about 3 years now. It’s a 55″ Sony LCD projection. Built in HDTV tuner. Nothing fancy. But it is nice. When we got it we had arranged HD programming with TimeWarner cable. It sucked. There was no real programming really on at the time and locals were not a part of the packages available at that time. Then we got an offer from Dish Network. We signed up and got their equipment and got their programming. And it sucked as well. Again, no locals in HD. And it all continued to suck until earlier this year. We had dropped the HD stuff shortly after getting it because the programming just wasn’t there. But now that it’s getting good, and for us to get it back I have to upgrade my satellite receiver .. new technology they say. Had I kept my HD package they would have upgraded me for free. Now it’s a $200 charge. Oh well … Right now Dish Network offers over 30 channels in HD for $20 more a month less $10 in discounts because its a new service for us (but still no locals). I’ve not subscribed to it yet. Instead I bought an off-air antenna and hooked it up. I get 18 local digital TV channels of which 11 offer programming in HD. The cool thing about digital TV signals is you either get them or you don’t. No fuzzy pictures or ghosted images. You either get it or you don’t. 18 channels is impressive for where we live. I could pull in more if I put up a “real” off-air antenna, but I bought a small directional antenna that you have to mount outside and point it towards the signals to tune anything in. And it works great! It’s the TERK HDTVo … yes that’s an “o” not a zero. It is a small, highly directional UHF/VHF antenna. You must point it in the direction of the signals. The more accurately you aim it the better the signal strength.
To figure out which direction to point it I used the tools that the Consumer Electronic Association has on their website (www.antennaweb.org) to look up the direction I needed to point my antenna. And that site is dead on! I had to “average” the compass headings to come up with the best signal strength. The CEA also has tools to help you pick the right antenna. I needed an antenna with the Blue rating. So that’s what I shopped for. The TERK HDTVo is a Blue rated antenna. It had mixed reviews. I was leery but thought I’ll give it a try. I found the best price at J&R’s website. And they have a good return policy, just in case it doesn’t work out. In my case it did. There were so many mixed reviews. In my case I’d have to give it 2 thumbs up. It does what it says! But keep in mind, what works for me might not work for you.
HOWEVER … it sure would be nice to get both Dayton and Cincinnati locals but we are happy getting the Dayton channels and one Cincy. Right now I’m pointing the antenna toward the Dayton towers … so … I guess to get both I need to get a different antenna or perhaps 2 of them and point one to Dayton and one to Cincy. Maybe, just maybe I’ll get one honking big antenna. 🙂