Cutting out cable TV


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  1. #1

    Cutting out cable TV

    Hey guys,

    So I had been planning on getting rid of my DISH network pretty soon and switching to Aereo. Aereo was a business that let you "rent" an OTA antennae in a datacenter and use the Aereo app to watch TV (mostly the local stations). That, plus NEtflix, gave me 90% of what I would have watched anyway.

    Yesterday however the supreme court effectively shut down Aereo. So I'm wondering what the other options are. I've never had an antennae, but is there a good, inexpensive way to get antennae based HD local channels + a basic DVR in place myself in the home? What product(s) do you guys use?

    I think at a minimum I need an antennae. I'm wondering if I can set that up on a desktop computer in my house to automatically record shows and then use DLNA streaming to push it to my TV's in the house, for example.
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  2. #2
    I had a Winegard amplified "squareshooter" outdoor antenna installed a few years back. It's split to three TVs. It works well for my location. We use either a box / or smart TV for our Netflix. Works well for our application! I'm able to buy broadband internet only from the cable company at $40 a month. The only drawback is I have to watch The Walking Dead on Monday nights via iTunes.
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  3. #3
    I dropped cable a good while back but went a different route than you did. I considered it, but didn't want the lady to have a tough time when she wanted to watch something and I was away.

    We currently use the Xbox for Hulu Plus ($8/mo), Netflix ($9/mo), and Amazon Prime ($6/mo, $72/yr- not to mention the free 2 day shipping perk). Through those we can watch just about everything. For HBO, USA, FX, and other channels that don't air content on the three I mentioned, we use a friends HBO go and cable provider log-in. You can also buy current seasons episodes at very reasonable rates on Amazon for the programs that aren't on Hulu or Netflix. I watch Justified this way.

    I also bought an outdoor HD antenna (don't waste your time with that indoor garbage) so we could watch football or anything else that is important enough to watch live on the over-the-air channels for free. This is the one I got, its about $90 at Best Buy

    I unplugged my existing satellite feed and ran the CAT5 cable to the new HD antenna since everything was already wired in the house- no extra work on my end!! Picture quality is fantastic.

    We pay $45/mo (was $29, but Charter jacked up the rate) for internet and save a good chunk of cash annually because of it.
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  4. #4
    bvibert's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Torrington, CT
    There's resources online that can give you an idea of what kind of reception you can expect at your location. Like this from the FCC

    That might help you to determine if getting an antenna is right for you.

  5. #5
    Geoff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    South Dartmouth, Ma & Killington, VT
    I did the FCC tools analysis a year or two ago. Providence is OK but I'd need a 40 foot mast with a high gain antenna to get the Boston stations at the Needham towers. Other than NFL football, it really doesn't help me. I watch sports that aren't over-the-air (Red Sox on NESN, some ESPN events) and premium commercial-free movie channels (Encore, HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, etc). Every year when I turn cable back on at my Massholia place in May, I agonize over this.

  6. #6
    Edd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Newmarket, NH
    I nagged the lady for some time about cord cutting but we compromised on trimming it down. Signed a two year deal with Comcast for less than $100/mo for internet with HBO and a handful of channels.

    We have AMC and Comedy Central, which is good. She lost Bravo, which is great, imho. We lost some oddballs, like TNT, TBS, MSNBC, SyFy, and IFC. I'd rather have IFC and MSNBC back, but not abig deal.

    What really stung is losing FX. I didn't realized how many shows we watch on that.

  7. #7
    Cut the cord a few months ago. I pay $40 a month for internet thru RCN. Pay for netflix and amazon prime, also use my brother's credentials for HBOGO and watchespn. Bought a chromecast and roku stick for streaming. Bought the basic amazon hd antenna as well as another cheap one and they both work fine. I am however not far at all from the broadcast towers in needham, ma.

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  8. #8
    I could never do without cable or satellite, due to my addiction to college sports. It is essentially impossible to get the LHN, SECN, or BTN online. For things like ESPN and ESPN2, you can usually find a pirated link online.

  9. #9
    WWF-VT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    MA & Fayston, VT
    Our family is not too big on TV. I live in Needham, MA and get 20+ channels with an indoor antenna plugged into the back of the TV. We have MeTV, This TV , Movies! all the local broadcast channels ( ABC,CBS, NBC,Fox) multiple PBS channels and more. We have never had cable and my college age son watches a lot of programs for free off the web.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Southington, CT
    I canceled cable TV and got an indoor antenna a couple months ago and haven't looked back. Get about 20 stations. Lots of better things to do than sit in front of a TV, then again I never really watched much TV and can care less for watching sports.
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