Not Receiving all channels

Greetings, I need some advice.
I live 40 miles south of Boston, Ma. I’m setting up an antenna in my attic. My Tablo is on the first floor and I’m using a booster. The broadcast antennas are about 30 miles from me. I get great reception except for two channels. Channel 4.1 - WBZ (CBS) and Channel 5.1 WCVB (ABC)… I actually get all the subchannels 4.2, 4.3, 5.2, 5.3, etc. I don’t know why this would happen. All the channels come from identical broadcast antennas. Your advice will be appreciated…

Final Update, I moved the antenna, removed the amplifier, and connected the Tablo and it worked. all the advice I received was helpful. My issue was that I moved my antenna and added the amplifier at the same time and it was not working well for me. Being patient and going back to basics was the best path to resolution. Thank you.

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I can’t say for sure but there are many possibilities. Here are a few.

  • Some channels use less power.
  • Antenna placement. Some may be lower on the tower which results in less signal strength at you location.
  • Frequency. Some frequencies travel better in a given environment.
  • Your antenna. This comes back to frequency but long story short your antenna may receive certain frequencies better.
  • Interference. Other transmitters like cell towers may be near you on a similar frequency to the channel with poor reception. This causes desensitization of the Tablo tuners.
  • Too much power. You may need to back the power of your amplifier down. The main channel could broadcast’s a stronger signal then the sub channels.
  • User error - Go back and double check you didn’t accidentally unselect any channels.

Thank you for your response. I will use your info to help troubleshoot.

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I’m leaning toward interference, too much power with the booster, or accidental deletion when selecting the channel. I expect the main channel to have the strongest signal. Looking at the physical channel frequencies I expect those to all be withing most antennas range.

I will remove the booster and try again with the Tablo and will try direct to a TV to rule out issues with the Tablo. Also, do you know if the Tablo is MPEG4 compatible? Not sure if this is something I should be concerned with.

That is an ongoing issue.

As I understand it, only the HDMI Tablos can display MPEG-4. Doesn’t look like any MPEG-4 channels in Boston (yet).

I’m curious about your initial issue. If you’re getting the subchannels I thought that means it’s NOT a signal/antenna issue. Must be a broadcast issue (MPEG-4? Not likely) or something in the Tablo decoding or software? I dunno…

That is my theory as well. It doesn’t make sense. I will post my troubleshooting process.
Thank you for your help!

When my local network stations started to install their new ATSC 3.0 transmitters, my reception of the existing ATSC 1.0 was degraded. I’m assuming that the existing broadcast antennas were possibly lowered or their power was reduced or both. I didn’t notice the same signal degradation on the sub channels just the main network stations.

What do you think the solution is on this? Remove the amplifier?

I have several suggestions that might help.

Move your antenna out of the attic and install it as high as possible above your roof.

Buy a better antenna.

If your existing antenna and booster doesn’t have a filter for 3G/4G/5G cellular interface, buy one that will filter out those frequencies.

Or do what I’m doing, I’m waiting for my new Tablo ATSC 3.0 to see if that will improve my reception. I’ve tried the other solutions with very limited success.

Good luck.

It looks like it is the Tablo, would be great to get this fixed. Any suggestions?

I’m not sure how you came to the conclusion unless those stations are in mpeg-4. If so follow along that thread and let Tablo know. I’m a regular user on this forum like you. Assuming it isn’t mpeg-4 the advice @3rdRockOKC gave you about moving the antenna, replacing the antenna, and getting a filter would be the next steps.

Contacting the station directly is also a good option. I saw a station reach out because they were doing some upgrades that caused bad signals. Definately worth a try.

Thank you. I thought when I disconnected the Tablo and plugged in a TV and it works great, eliminated the antenna and booster. I would definitely like to use the Tablo, I have previously but not in the he last year. I will contact Tech support to see if they can help.

One thing about the Tablo - if the signal is too strong, it can impact the ability of the tuner to lock in the station. It is kind of strange that only the major channel doesn’t work, and the sub channels do.


It sounds like you are NOT having this problem since you are getting the sub channels with no issues but I thought I’d throw it out there…

tablo digital cliff

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Exactly why I suggested turning the booster down. Sounds like his is just on of off though. Adjusting the antenna slightly away may help attenuate the signal too. I think at this point talking to the TV station might help. It’s unlikely he is the only one experiencing this problem.

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your advice worked for me! thank you

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