Picture pixilates

The picture pixilates quite a bit. Worse when I first use Tablo on live TV. Sometimes on recordings. I just got a faster modem, but is that a modem speed issue or would a better HD antenna help?

Probably not a “modem speed” issue unless we’re talking 56K modem :slight_smile:

If not doing remote to the Tablo, then you’re not seeing “blockiness” caused by that… so the only alternative I can think of it that you’re getting recorded blockiness maybe due to poor signal.  So the question… it the blockiness identical for the same show everytime you play it?

Good question. I’ll check that on recordings. I really notice it on live TV. Had no pixilating with HD Antenna before the Tablo that I noticed.

It’s possible that local network load/signal could cause it (I think).  But I know in my cases, it was the weather…

Poor network speeds would not cause the pixelation. It would cause the stream from the Tablo to buffer.

The pixelation here is indication of poor OTA signal. Do you have a dual tuner Tablo? There is a non-amplified splitter in it which results in signal degradation.

Get a bigger antenna, and / or a preamplifier at the antenna mast.

The pixelation here is indication of poor OTA signal. Do you have a dual tuner Tablo? There is a non-amplified splitter in it which results in signal degradation.
Does this mean the 4 channel tuner has a better preamp? Currently I have my tablo input connected to one output of a 4 way splitter. I assume that means it gets 25% of the signal strength.

Just curious.

Does this mean the 4 channel tuner has a better preamp? Currently I have my tablo input connected to one output of a 4 way splitter. I assume that means it gets 25% of the signal strength.

Just curious.

Do you have an amplifier on the signal coming into the 4-way splitter?  If not you likely will need one. 

I know in my case the run from my antenna to the disrtibution point is about 50 ft, then I split the signal 6 ways.  I have a Channel Master Titan mast mounted pre-amp to make sure the signal gets distribute properly.  My longest run is 103 ft when I include the run from the antenna to the distribution point and then up to our master bedroom.  Without the amp signal was very poor, with the amp all local channels come in at full strength and I can pick up 5 US channels as well.

Both the 2 tuner and 4 tuner models are basically splitters. The 2 tuner splits the signal into two and the 4 tuner into 4. Each split results in signal loss. You also get signal loss in your cable run, the longer the run the greater the loss. My antenna is in the attic on an 80ft run. I run a pre-amp at the antenna to boost the signal before my cable run and a distribution amp just in front of the Tablo to boost the signal just before it is slip into 4.

My distribution amp is adjustable so I do not end up over amplifying. Turns out that was not a problem in my case. 



If you have a 4 way splitter before the Tablo I would definitely either put a preamp at the antenna or a distribution amp where the signal is being split.

Try connecting the Tablo directly to OTA antenna and see if your pixelation would go away. This would confirm antenna signal issues.

I am getting a second antenna just for my tablo. I only live about 15 miles from the OTA stations but sometimes have pixelated screen maybe weather or multipath. It’s a Winegard leaf I hang in the window. It has a usb powered preamp before the splitter. I can pick up all UHF stations minus a VHF 60 Mhz NBC station. I guess the Winegard fractal leaf antenna can’t go that low even though it’s wideband.


Antenna on roof, 50’ of cable running from west end where antenna is to east end. 

Down the inside of the east wall, east end of house to location above lower level ceiling. 
into an 8-way splitter.
From splitter it heads back up the wall to a wall jack. The jack has a 1 into 2 splitter. From there it goes to the TV and DVD recorder.
Back at the 8-way, another cable runs 10 feet over to the south and up that wall a bit to another jack, with a 2-way splitter in the wall box. From there a 6’ cable to the Tablo.
Back at the 8 way another 20’ cable also goes south across the lower level ceiling to the kitchen area and up the wall about 4’ to a - yea, a wall jack but this time no splitter.
And again at the 8 way, there’s another 50’ cable that heads back west over the lower level ceiling to the TV and my computer there.
So from antenna on roof, down into the attic, 50’ east, down the wall (about 15’ of cable here) to the big splitter, then to other splitters and the wall jacks and devices. 
The lower level TV gets a signal through what is likely 100’ of cable and a splitter.
The Tablo gets a signal through 60 or 70 feet of cable and the splitter. 
The TV and DVD recorder goes through that same cable and 2 splitters.
No amp anywhere. 
We only occasionally lose signal from the ABC station, a low power station broadcasting at low resolutions. 
I’ve considered an amp but wonder if I’d be injecting more issues than we have, which are pretty much no issues at this time unless the weather is poor or it’s really windy.
(and no budget for it right now anyway)

The short of it is that pixelation is poor antenna signal - the receiver can’t get all of the digital information so you get that pixelation. It doesn’t have enough information to create the whole image, sort of like a distorted computer image. 
 PS - run the better cable, too - not the crappy older cable TV junk. Use RG6 and not RG59.

@tom95521, my situation is sort of similar except I’m 40 miles from “the tower”, I too use an amplified leaf in the window and cannot get one channel that is VHF, in my case it’s ABC.  I can pick up ABC barely using amplified rabbit ears on our 2nd story, but no Tablo there.

(maybe for my next house, I’ll plan for an outdoor antenna)

We are 45 from the towers which are up by Alleman, north of Ankeny, between Ankeny and Des Moines. Our house is down in a valley and surrounded by trees and woods. (and deer and coyote and bunnies)

Interesting that I’m running so many splitters (always have) and not having major issues (or even minor ones, really)
I wonder what life would be like with an amp!

I am 58 miles from the tower in a two story house. I have a MOHU Sky 60 in the attic tucked as far up into the peak as I could get it. I have the pre-amp and am from my previous post. I get the 4 networks which is all I really cared about and several other channels. I only get pixelation during heavy rain storms on a few channels. Have not experienced a good old fashion thunderstorm since going OTA.

Even though the Sky 60 is a “Multidirectional” Antenna I used the SignalGH app and a Homerun to dial in the angle of the antenna and I did measure an improvement in signal strength.

@Sherylcat Let us know if the pixelation seems to be the same when you check your recordings. As a few above have noted, it’s likely reception related. 

You can run another channel scan on your Tablo by navigating to Settings > Edit channel lineup > Rescan from the Tablo app(s) to get an updated look at your reception.

OK, you guys/gals have jinxed me.

I get home last night and my wife is complaining about “a problem” with some shows on ABC - the weaker network in our area - you guessed it, pixelation and occasional corrupted sound.
Geesh, things were fine unitl I read this thread.

So looks like I need to go try to find an amp to overcome the issues and long cable runs and multiple splitters. And here we went years on this system without any real issues but when I saw PBS flicker just a bit I figured we were now on the edge.

By the way, I have found that terminating unused connections does help as well. They sell terminators for splitters so if you have unused connections, try terminating those. It’s a cap with resistor that helps prevent reflections off the open connection. I can recall years ago if you didn’t terminate the ends of your Ethernet coax runs you were just asking for endless troubles as the signals bounced back from the end of the copper and wreaked havoc with the integrity of the run.
That’s how we measured cable length and detected breaks or troubles - bounced a signal from the end of the cable and measured the trip time. 

You did not knock on wood when you read this thread? Could it have been weather related?

@ShadowsPapa one thing I had to do get the US channels I wanted (about 70 miles away for PBS and 98 miles away for Fox) was to make sure I turned my Antenna until I maximized the signal strength.  This is only needed for the weaker channels.  The local ones come in a full strength no matter how I turn the antenna.

You did not knock on wood when you read this thread? Could it have been weather related?

No, unless the fake fiberboard stuff counts, or slamming my head against the wall…

Weather, possibly, but it was only windy. (it’s worse in high winds and we have a lot of that)

The antenna is aimed - I grabbed the stats from the antenna site, used my phone as a compass and set it. (unless the wind turned it a bit!)
OF course more devices on the line, like the addition of the Tablo, may have put us at the edge finally and any little thing may cause issues. Sort of like standing on the edge of a cliff. You are fine, safe and solid, unless the ground gets wet or the wind blows… 

Anything that messes with my CBS or PBS is going to get me a bit upset. (regardless of what Mark and Sting sang years ago, I don’t care a lick about MTV)

I ended having to aim my antenna using a USB Hauppauge TV capture card.  To get all the channels I want there are four broadcast towers I need to be aware of, so the lower strength PBS and FOX towers are about 20 degrees apart from each south of my house.  Using a compass would not allow me to get the best signal.  In fact I’m about to re-aim the antenna to drop the Fox channels and strengthen the PBS ones, so back to using a laptop and USB capture.  Everything on the FOX channel I want is covered by other Canadian broadcasters so I might as well get the strongest PBS signal I can and stop the intermittent drop outs. :smiley: