Questions/Answers for a new cord cutter

Next Question:

How do weather conditions affect reception of OTA channels?


Weather conditions may impact everyone a bit different depending on location and setup. For me, just bad weather has little to no effect on my reception. A nasty thunderstorm or near blizzard, and watching the TV, you’ll notice things - tablo will probably puke with error.

Now atmospheric conditions and other technical “stuff” can cause unknown issues, maybe only temporary, maybe not.

You don’t want to be in the loop.
It tends to go around in circles, and makes me dizzy. :wink:

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Ok, so I got rid of the old analog TV in the bedroom and replaced it with a Samsung Smart TV. I am thinking that all I need to do is get another Firestick and then us the Tablo App to view the OTA channels. Does that sound like it would work?


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Yes, that will work fine. That’s how we watch local channels. You might check and see if there is a Tablo app FOR the Samsung TV. If there is, you won’t need the Firestick.


Tablo Compatible Smart TVs
Select Samsung Smart TVs in the US running the TIZEN operating system have a native Tablo app.


  • Proprietary operating system means a limited app selection
  • App only available in the United States
  • Does not support pausing of Live TV
  • Does not support Automatic Commercial Skip

This is what Tablo support said about this subject:

“ Thanks for contacting Tablo Support.

Currently there is not a Tablo app available for Samsung TVs in Canada.

If the Tablo app is available on the TV it will appear when you search for ‘Tablo’ to download new apps.

If the Tablo app is not on the TV it would need a connected device that can run the Tablo app, such as a Roku or Firestick.”

Looks like the Firestick is the way to go.

Thanks for your reply.


Yeah living in Canada sucks sometimes, but at least half of our population didn’t and wouldn’t vote for Trump lol

Well, it’s not like you’re entire federal government is a joke either. It’s been for many decades, he just seemed to show it off to the world.

Regardless which figurehead is there, collectively… it’s not like there’s any individual decisions, we’re still a joke to the world.

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Hi Bill. I am in Richmond Hill just south of you. Weather has no impact to any of the Canadian stations, they come in perfect at all times. I only have small issues in the spring with some of the US stations that are over 60 miles away.

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Thanks for the reply from a place close to mine. That sounds promising.


Another question:

My new tv upstairs is a smart TV and I will install a Firestick on it. Does the TV have to be on my network in order for Tablo to send data to the
Firestick or just the Firestick on the network to obtain data from the Tablo?


Bill, who is getting much smarter every time one of you answers my questions.

Just the Firestick…

With the Fire TV Stick connected to the new TV, you can treat it as a “dumb TV”, no need to use any other buttons than the power on and volume buttons. No need to have it connected to your network for streaming.

But if you want other things like firmware updates for the TV you should connect it to your WiFi network.


I connected the TV to the network. I will buy a Firestick for it when they go on sale.


There will be a Black Friday sale on them for sure.

Ok so now I am feeling better about how to hook up this whole OTA thing and would like to ask another question.

So far we have examined the upside to OTA but there is always a downside to everything so I would like some sober and thoughtful negatives you have experienced that I should be aware of. Thanks in advance,


You can experience issues related to antenna reception, network, hard drive, electrical interference, and power supply to name a few. These can manifest themselves as pixelation, failed recordings and reboots causing split recordings. Your best bet is to invest in the following in order of importance:

  1. Quality antenna, cabling, and placement typically outside or in the attic.
  2. Solid network with your Tablo connected directly via ethernet.
  3. If possible avoid WIFI for your streaming devices but if you must use WIFI, ensure a good connection.
  4. Quality Hard Drive, consider a device with a separate power supply.
    Good Luck!
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If you don’t plan to use it as a “smart” TV, you might just as well leave it disconnected. Maybe check for an upgrade, probably just for the part you’re not using or timezone updates.

But if there’s not real need for it, one less device for no reason taking WiFi space and open your TV up for data mining… if that matters. Of course Amazon already knows more than anyone can ever image, but why give more than necessary?

bbaorbb hit most of the typical trouble spots but I’ll add a comment… I think you can overdo the antenna end of this. I’m surprised that Tablo doesn’t have better AGC (Automatic Gain Control) circuitry. I live over 50 miles from the tower arrays that cover Houston. I have a small yagi in the attic so when I had reception issues, I ASSUMED I needed more signal and tried a line amplifier. To make a long story short, I finally not only removed the amplifier but put a 3dB attenuator between the Tablo and the antenna and ALMOST all my reception issues went away. I RARELY have a broken recording and contrary what others report, I have NEVER seen a reboot due to signal. I’d say don’t get too hung up on perfect, high signal. With digital, Tablo seems to be happiest with “adequate” but certainly not high signal strength.