[opendtv] Post cable bliss

  • From: Cliff Benham <flyback1@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2012 16:53:09 -0500

Comments from a contributor on a professional 'colorist' list who dumped cable for over the air TV reception via antenna.


"For the first time since college circa '92 I view my television via
antenna and it's shockingly good.  I just moved into a new home in
Atlanta and decided to give Comcast the heave ho.  I have 60" Panasonic
plasmas in our living room and bedroom and feed my coaxial DA from an
RCA antenna I purchased for $40.  It can be installed outside or in the
attic and in my case, the basement has worked just as well.

I have told my wife that I am still shocked a month after we switched at
just how much better digital broadcast, at least in my area of Atlanta,
looks than any cable or streaming service.  Gone are the ubiquitous
compressed pixel blocks absolutely wrecking the signal.  That stuff was
ludicrous and made me dismay at what was being done to our craft to get
it into living rooms.  Granted my wife can't tell the difference (same
old story) but it's nice to know that digital broadcast offers anyone in
reach a nice picture just by turning their set on.

The audio quality is still unknown.  The speakers on board the bigger
plasmas are clearly window dressing in anticipation of wiring into some
sort of theater speaker set up.  I havent gotten that far in the new
house and have two babies anyway so not much tolerance for sub woofers.

I had been thinking for sometime that TV as I knew it was toast.  How
long would viewers choose to pay for an over compressed bundle of
channels when they could pay a la carte from any number of services.
But seeing this makes me wonder if TV might just return to its humble
roots of broadcast for the betterment of viewing.  If enough viewers get
this quality of signal for $0 a month I would think they would be happy
to stop paying Comcast, Time Warner et al.  Comcast tried to lure me
back with "more channels than you get now for only $60 a month" which is
clearly a company out of touch with value.  And don't forget the lease
fees for our HD receiver and DVR.  And don't mind the artifacts, your
wife doesn't see them.  Yes you miss out on HBO and other premium
channels but there are other ways to get that in a non-linear fashion.

We opted for Roku for streaming to augment a Netflix subscription.  So
my monthly bill to Comcast is $25 for coaxial broadband internet (old
bill was north of $200).  The Netflix is $8 a month and I think the Roku
was a one time $99 with options for more subscriptions.  Alas the video
quality from Roku via HDMI gets a D.  But you would think it a B next to
cable.  Its only when an antenna delivers an uncompressed signal that
the streamers and cable companies look like what they are, amateur
compressionists with a key to the gate of content.

Who knew?"

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