Channel with greatest broadcast power not detected

Is it possible for signals to be too strong? I live in Madison, WI at latitude 43.0541, longitude -89.4509. If you check that location on, e.g. TV Broadcast Tower Locator - OTA DTv, you will see that 5 networks broadcast off the same tower about 4.3 miles west of us. Of these the ABC station has the greatest broadcast power yet when I run a channel scan on a 4th gen Tablo (with the internal amplifier enabled) this channel is not even detected.

It happens that I am on the east side of our building with windows on the north wall. There may be reflections from nearby buildings but it seems bizarre not to detect the strongest signal off the tower.

Any hints or recommendations on indoor antenna placements or setup? I have used several different antennas, including the antenna with the 4th gen Tablo, with similar results.

Yes the signal can be over amplified. TV tuners want a signal within certain ranges.

You didn’t say what happened with the rescan with the built in amplification off. Of course some users need amplification to pick up stations farther away. For that I would try to not point the antenna at the closest broadcast antenna.

This is where you can turn off antenna amplification in Settings:

Definitely try with amplification off. It is possible to overload a tuner.

Yes, u shoulnt need amp at 4 miles, turn off

I did turn off the amplifier and re-run a channel scan but, again, that channel was not detected at all. I checked with others in the building who use an antenna and they have not difficulty with that channel. It is quite perplexing.

Being so close to the transmitter calls for some unorthodox solutions. You could possibly end up working with some good old ancient rabbit ears.

Leave the cable connected to the Tablo and disconnect the antenna. Run a scan to see if you pick up any stations with just the cable.

To explain, rabbit ears gives better control over the amount of signal that is received. The elements can be extended and contracted as needed to control signal strength.

Many times the coax alone can acts as a antenna when close to a high powered transmitter even though it is shielded.

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I moved the antenna to another location and was able to receive all the stations of interest to me. As the antenna is only attached to the Tablo and not to the television it is easy to relocate.

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Check your amplification settings in the Tablo app. Change it and rescan.

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“amplification settings in the Tablo app”


I did not know about this setting.

A link to more information about this setting, would be much welcomed.

Unless the term actually refers to recording and live TV quality.

Just a quick search turned up this…

Tablo TV › Blogs The 4th Generation Tablo DVR’s In-Line Amplifier – What You Need to Know

Try connecting your un-amplified antenna directly to your TV and see if that works. If it does the issue is with your Tablo. If not it could be an antenna issue. Being so close a paperclip should work, in fact you might try that just to see :slight_smile:

I suggested rabbit ears or just a short length of coax. Being so close is a real problem that will call for some out of the box solutions.

You’re paper clip solution just might work

So it’s only the Fourth Gen that has this feature.

Are u referring to the amplifier? If so, yes!