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Topic: Cut the cord!

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bayareabadger

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #30 on: July 24, 2017, 08:57:40 PM »
This was a good guide from a few years ago. You'd have to double check some things, but it's a start.

https://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2016/9/1/12684186/ncaa-football-without-tv-cord-cutting

TyphonInc

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #31 on: July 24, 2017, 10:03:41 PM »
or putting it in a window,

The amount of channels I now get has doubled by this simple action.

For us it was the CW and ABC that were spotty. Moving the antenna to a window cleared those 2 up and added 8 more channels we never use.

FearlessF

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #32 on: July 24, 2017, 10:36:48 PM »
Enjoy the relatively "free" over the air locals while you can

I assume they will be going away some day.
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MarqHusker

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #33 on: July 24, 2017, 11:04:13 PM »
I love the HDTV rooftop antenna AD which appeared below this thread.  Where are the rabbit ear ADs?

Brutus Buckeye

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #34 on: July 25, 2017, 12:41:13 AM »
I didn't have cable for a short stint. You can stream any game on shady sites, but the picture quality sucks and you'll need ad blocker, which is a free download that you should have regardless.
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Temp430

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #35 on: July 25, 2017, 08:13:18 AM »
I can't imagine the bandwidth you would need to deliver HDTV live.  Much more than the 15 Mbps I get via ADSL or 35 Mbps via cellular.  Where I live satellite HDTV is the only option and I doubt that will change anytime soon.
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bwarbiany

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #36 on: July 25, 2017, 01:22:04 PM »
Enjoy the relatively "free" over the air locals while you can

I assume they will be going away some day.

Why? They currently are locals through the cable/satellite companies, but they've actually had a resurgence in "OTA" popularity due to cord-cutting.

The picture quality is much better with an antenna than EITHER cable/satellite or streaming due to the heavy compression that that TV/streaming solutions have to use. Most people don't truly understand the difference between analog and digital transmission, and remember to the old days when they got fuzzy low-quality broadcasts. But the simplest way to explain it as that with digital you basically either have perfect reception or zero reception. And perfect reception with a basically uncompressed HD signal is better than cable/satellite.

The industry isn't just "not going away", it's doubling down with ATSC 3.0, which will bring OTA 4K broadcasts. Cable/satellite are just barely coming along with 4K, again due to the bandwidth, whereas OTA doesn't have that issue. And the streaming solutions (Netflix/Amazon) have 4K content, but again it is still relatively heavily compressed due to bandwidth. That's why 4K on Netflix doesn't look as amazing as the pristine 4K content you see in the story where you bought your TV. The "demonstration" content is uncompressed.

OTA is here to stay IMHO.

bwarbiany

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #37 on: July 25, 2017, 01:31:53 PM »
I can't imagine the bandwidth you would need to deliver HDTV live.  Much more than the 15 Mbps I get via ADSL or 35 Mbps via cellular.  Where I live satellite HDTV is the only option and I doubt that will change anytime soon.

You don't need as much as you'd think. HD compressed using MPEG-4 has a max bitrate of about 9.5 Mbps IIRC. Average bitrates for most sources are much lower. Netflix recommends a minimum of 5 Mbps downstream speed for HD video. A quick web search suggests youtube compresses 1080p to ~2.5 Mbps.

As long as you're not trying to stream multiple things at once, 15 Mbps would be fine for HD. Not enough for UHD though (Netflix recommends 25 Mbps for UHD).

This will get better when HEVC (the newer compression algorithm) really takes over. And the advantage of IP streaming technologies (relative to cable/satellite) is that IP streaming is point-to-point. The cable/satellite operators need to support older set top boxes with older compression (a lot are stuck on MPEG-2), so they are forced to send the data compressed much less efficiently than is possible. With a point-to-point protocol like IP, if you're playing back content on a whiz-bang new box with HEVC, the provider streaming you the content can send it in HEVC compression while your neighbor with an older box gets the same content with MPEG-4...

But yeah, I think you have enough bandwidth for HD streaming.

Now with ADSL I don't know if you have any issues with data caps...

Hawkinole

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #38 on: July 26, 2017, 12:01:32 AM »
Two questions:

(1) Will there be a way on here to search for threads using keyword searches?

(2) I don't have time to digest this material today, but it could have future value. Can a thread such as this be pinned?

bwarbiany

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #39 on: July 26, 2017, 12:43:21 PM »
(2) I don't have time to digest this material today, but it could have future value. Can a thread such as this be pinned?

To be honest, I would prefer this get merged into the thread that already exists in the General / Off Topic board... It might make sense to pin it there, as I'm sure there will be more people interested in this over the next few years.

utee94

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #40 on: July 26, 2017, 01:01:12 PM »
I get closer to cutting the cord every day.  The two major things holding me back are

1) Having to navigate multiple providers/services and potentially separate hardware, to get all the things the cable box currently provides.  I know that I can manage it, but I'm not sure my wife can.  She has a hard enough time switching between cable and Bluray, bless her heart.  :)

2) Access to all of the sports that I want.  Which is mostly college football through Disney/Fox, but I also follow Formula 1 which is primarily on NBCSN right now.

I

PSUinNC

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #41 on: July 26, 2017, 01:31:51 PM »
I literally only have DirecTV for one reason - I still have  .5meg up, .5meg down DSL.  If I can ever get better internet, I'm gone. 

I get closer to cutting the cord every day.  The two major things holding me back are

1) Having to navigate multiple providers/services and potentially separate hardware, to get all the things the cable box currently provides.  I know that I can manage it, but I'm not sure my wife can.  She has a hard enough time switching between cable and Bluray, bless her heart.  :)

2) Access to all of the sports that I want.  Which is mostly college football through Disney/Fox, but I also follow Formula 1 which is primarily on NBCSN right now.

I

iahawk15

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #42 on: July 26, 2017, 02:30:46 PM »
I literally only have DirecTV for one reason - I still have  .5meg up, .5meg down DSL.  If I can ever get better internet, I'm gone.

bwarbiany

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Re: Cord cutting football watching
« Reply #43 on: July 26, 2017, 02:49:34 PM »
I get closer to cutting the cord every day.  The two major things holding me back are

1) Having to navigate multiple providers/services and potentially separate hardware, to get all the things the cable box currently provides.  I know that I can manage it, but I'm not sure my wife can.  She has a hard enough time switching between cable and Bluray, bless her heart.  :)

2) Access to all of the sports that I want.  Which is mostly college football through Disney/Fox, but I also follow Formula 1 which is primarily on NBCSN right now.

  • It's easier than you think. When I was still married, my ex figured it out and she's about as non-techie as they come. Now, my girlfriend has ZERO difficulty navigating either our Roku (main TV) or the Apple TV (bedroom). Heck, my kids have no trouble with it. If you actually care about local channels, the biggest streaming services include locals so you don't need to get crazy about switching inputs all the time if you're worried about swapping between antenna and the streaming box. And a Roku is the only box you really need--you don't need to switch between 3 different boxes to find your content.
  • DirecTV Now has NBCSN in its base $35/mo package, along with ESPN/ESPN2. Playstation Vue has the same, in its $39.99/mo package. Both include locals.

bwarbiany

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #44 on: July 27, 2017, 01:34:50 PM »
And now there's apparently a way to watch BTN with your Sling subscription... Not sure whether this is a "glitch" that will go away...

Thumper

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #45 on: July 28, 2017, 03:01:37 PM »
Interesting... There appears to be an antenna streaming option that must include some sort of onboard flash, because it allows pause/rewind... Basically time-shifting of up to 1 hour.

http://cordcuttersnews.com/antenna-direct-release-new-streaming-stick-stream-antenna-device/

This can help if you have the antenna in a strange location in the house, and want to view live OTA TV without running cable to every location.

Only downside is that it's a single tuner... So if multiple people in the house at the same time wanted to watch different channels, you're SOL. But if that doesn't apply to you, it's worth checking out.

Edit--one thing I didn't think about is that this might affect quality, since it will probably compress the OTA signal to send it over WiFi... So you may give back the signal improvement that you get from going OTA by using this...
There are various dvr devices that let you record/pause/rewind OTA TV.  I have a cheap Insignia TV with Roku built in.  It has a USB slot that lets me plug in a flash drive and I can time-shift up to 90 minutes of OTA TV.
For a more complete DVR capability there is Tablo https://www.tablotv.com/
It is becoming less of an issue as the local affiliates of Fox, ABC, NBC and CBS are allowing the networks to negotiate with the streaming providers in behalf of the local stations. This is speeding up the availability of the local stations.

Thumper

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #46 on: July 28, 2017, 03:04:39 PM »
I literally only have DirecTV for one reason - I still have  .5meg up, .5meg down DSL.  If I can ever get better internet, I'm gone. 

Do you have 4G service from AT&T available?  If you sign up with one of their unlimited plans, they will throw in DirecTV Now for free and it won't count against your data.

Thumper

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #47 on: July 28, 2017, 03:12:55 PM »
  • It's easier than you think. When I was still married, my ex figured it out and she's about as non-techie as they come. Now, my girlfriend has ZERO difficulty navigating either our Roku (main TV) or the Apple TV (bedroom). Heck, my kids have no trouble with it. If you actually care about local channels, the biggest streaming services include locals so you don't need to get crazy about switching inputs all the time if you're worried about swapping between antenna and the streaming box. And a Roku is the only box you really need--you don't need to switch between 3 different boxes to find your content.
  • DirecTV Now has NBCSN in its base $35/mo package, along with ESPN/ESPN2. Playstation Vue has the same, in its $39.99/mo package. Both include locals.


This.  Roku is the king of compatibility with services and extremely simple to use. Get the top end model and you get 4K and UHD compatibility along with voice search across multiple providers.  My wife is very non-techie and she has no problems with it.  I did add a Sideclick to the Roku remote so there is only one remote to navigate all devices.
If your TV doesn't support screen mirroring, Roku will add that function so you can cast video from other devices to your TV.  Very handy as you can use your headphones in your phone to listen quietly while watching.

CatsbyAZ

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #48 on: July 30, 2017, 08:14:29 AM »
The Mountain West considering cutting the cord with major networks, cites a disappointment in lack of control over kickoff/tipoff times: http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sports/aztecs/

MrNubbz

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #49 on: July 30, 2017, 11:05:15 AM »
Is there any chance cable providers may see the writing on the wall and offer up competitive ala carte packages? :96:
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bwarbiany

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #50 on: July 30, 2017, 12:24:14 PM »
Is there any chance cable providers may see the writing on the wall and offer up competitive ala carte packages? :96:


Drew4UTk

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #51 on: July 31, 2017, 10:07:30 AM »
have any of you guys used a rooted firestick? 

bwarbiany

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #52 on: July 31, 2017, 11:58:03 AM »
have any of you guys used a rooted firestick? 

I tried to use the rooted Fire stick to run Kodi for a while. It did not work well on a good day, and on a bad day was such a nightmare as to be unusable. It wasn't the Fire stick that was the problem, either. I tried the Kodi platform on a PC and had the same issues. They just didn't have reliable streams at all, and they were also all terrible quality.

MarqHusker

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #53 on: August 03, 2017, 10:05:49 PM »
Great wsj article today on the resurgence of the rabbit ear antenna for purposes of viewing OTA networks.   Despite this, 29% adults said they were unaware that network tv stations broadcast over the air for free.  I'm feeling old.

bwarbiany

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #54 on: August 04, 2017, 02:41:05 PM »
Great wsj article today on the resurgence of the rabbit ear antenna for purposes of viewing OTA networks.   Despite this, 29% adults said they were unaware that network tv stations broadcast over the air for free.  I'm feeling old.

I liked the headline lol:

Millennials Unearth an Amazing Hack to Get Free TV: the Antenna

I did think they overlooked the point I keep making, that with digital transmission all the bad reception problem of old-school analog antennas go away. And that with the ability to send less-compressed broadcasts than cable/satellite, picture quality is IMPROVED by going OTA.

Most people of our generation that grew up with an antenna and then switched to cable did so partly for more channels, but partly also because the signal was much cleaner. That's no longer the case, and that's something I don't think people recognize.

Especially since 29% of them don't even realize free OTA TV exists lol.

MikeDeTiger

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #55 on: August 04, 2017, 05:09:14 PM »
Ah geez.....i JUST yesterday spent like 3 hours researching all this crap and TODAY I find this handy article.  Of course that's how it works. 

Anyway....

Thanks for writing this.  Good to get some input from someone already doing it.  Here's a couple points important to me I didn't see you address.  May or may not be correct, may or may not be useful to others here.

The Sports Extra package from Sling TV is $10/mo, not $5, as per their website yesterday.  For me that means Sling Blue ($25/mo, + $10/mo during football season, for a total of $35/mo.) because Sling Orange doesn't have enough of the non-sports channels I want.  Gotta have the Sports package since Blue doesn't include the ESPN family natively. 

DirecTV NOW probably has the most impressive channel lineup in the lower tiers, and their cheapest, as you mentioned, is $35.  However two things are steering me to Sling.  Sling Blue + SP has more channels (sports channels, I think....I believe non-sports channels were comparable as far as the ones I watch) than DTV Now, and Sling now has online DVR capability.  Honestly, recording has been a primary reason I haven't cut the cord before now.  As far as I can tell with DTV Now, they don't currently offer that, but I'd be very surprised if they don't offer it soon.  That said, in order to get all the channels I want with DTV Now, I'd have to get the $50/mo package, and I believe I can get it all for $35 with Sling. 

Recording OTA networks is still an issue.  I've had a digital antenna for years, but appointment viewing almost never happens with me.  I notice there are now several manufacturers who make DVR devices with no monthly subscription fees like TiVo used to do, so if you or anyone has any experience with them, please give input/recommendations.  Especially need the ability to record CBS during football season. 

But it's roughly ~$25/mo for Netflix + AmazonPrime + Hulu, which gives me access to like, almost everything that's not in the realm of live TV.  Plus another $35/mo. in football season and probably $25/mo outside of football season (I don't ever watch ESPN or FSN etc except for cfb) for Sling.  Together, it's still half the price of the $100/mo DirecTV costs, and that's for pretty much the cheapest tier they have.  Our local cable company isn't really any better.  So this is probably going to happen soon. 

Even if someone can't access ABC for any reason, multiple sites assure Sling credentials work to verify access the WatchESPN app, so you can easily get ABC games even if you can't get ABC itself. 

Also, there's AirWave and AirTV which I don't fully understand yet (https://www.wired.com/2017/01/airwave-airtv-cordcutting-cable/), but other than the confusing nature (at the moment) of front-end setup, these could be solutions to watch for as far as issues like the one utee94 brought up.....my gf is in the same boat, she has a hard enough time grasping that we do most things via Chromecast, and we have to switch that out for FireTV Stick when we want to watch anything on Prime (because effing Google and Amazon can't stop flipping each other off for the time being, ugh.) 

Also, how the heck do you do links on this board?

MikeDeTiger

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #56 on: August 04, 2017, 05:20:48 PM »
And of course Netflix/Hulu/Prime is basically just me being generous and not using Kodi add-ons for everything   :67:

The specific way I used it was not illegal, but I'd be lying if I said it wasn't probably immoral.  That said, the FCC has nixed Exodus for now, so until I find an alternate source that good and set up a VPN, I am no longer using it for anything, and frankly ~$25-30/mo for all those services ain't much, and gets you nearly everything other than current HBO shows.  Plus my ISP won't send me letters in the mail.  I can't be prosecuted for the way I used Kodi, but my ISP theoretically has the right to refuse me service. 

MikeDeTiger

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #57 on: August 04, 2017, 05:29:48 PM »
Also, here's my other plug for Sling, or more accurately, against DTV Now.  It's owned by AT&T who along with Verizon is leading the charge against Net Neutrality.  For which they can both eat a dick.  I feel filthy enough having a Verizon phone right now, and I'm not inclined to help the schmucks at AT&T in their battle to own (and cripple) the InterWebz.  This place, among millions of others, would rot to nothing.  I'd steer people away from VZ's go90 also, but......go90, LOLz

Sling is owned by Dish, and as far as I know, they're not involved in that insanity. 

If the FCC doesn't have the same common sense they had in 2009, I guess we'll ALL be switching to DTV Now.

Thumper

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #58 on: August 06, 2017, 02:57:50 PM »
Also, here's my other plug for Sling, or more accurately, against DTV Now.  It's owned by AT&T who along with Verizon is leading the charge against Net Neutrality.  For which they can both eat a dick.  I feel filthy enough having a Verizon phone right now, and I'm not inclined to help the schmucks at AT&T in their battle to own (and cripple) the InterWebz.  This place, among millions of others, would rot to nothing.  I'd steer people away from VZ's go90 also, but......go90, LOLz

Sling is owned by Dish, and as far as I know, they're not involved in that insanity. 

If the FCC doesn't have the same common sense they had in 2009, I guess we'll ALL be switching to DTV Now.

Your research is pretty much spot on.  One you didn't cover was Playstation Vue, you might want to check that.  Sling is the most mature platform at the moment and is probably the way I would go if I hadn't gotten in on the early offer on DirecTV Now.  I get the Go Big package + HBO for $35 per month.  Now it it $65 and not worth it IMO.  DirecTV Now has a cloud DVR in Beta and is supposed to be available to all subscribers in the fall.
I have a lifetime subscription to Playon Desktop which allows me to record any streaming video (not OTA) to a PC and play back whenever.  It also skips all commercials.
I have Netflix and Amazon Prime but I had them even when I had satellite TV so I don't consider them as an additional cost.
AirWave is an antenna with built in Wifi so it can transmit to all your devices without running coax cable everywhere.

rolltidefan2

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Re: Cut the cord!
« Reply #59 on: August 10, 2017, 01:00:58 PM »
Tvfool says I need an attic mounted antenna.  My cable if run through my crawlspace.

How do I get the antenna signal through to my TVs?  Run the cable through to the crawlspace?

Anyone have a beginner's checklist as I'm not sure how these things work

 

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