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Canberra’s distinct lack of aerials

By lemaChet - 12 June 2007 60

While doing some property inspections recently (that’s a whole other story…) it has become clear to us that Canberra seems to suffer from a lack of on-roof tv aerials in most cases.

I’m not saying in every case, but, for the majority of times, it seems that an aerial on the roof, ala other major cities, doesn’t exist here in Canberra. Newer developments seem to have them in some instances, and some older places have them.

I’m wondering why people in Canberra all use the internal Rabbit Ears or similar, and have done for the 20-odd years i’ve been living here.

The only reason I ask is because for myself personally, the issue has never come up before now, it’s just tv. However, my partner is querying it, as the reception is kinda crappy.

It’s all well and good to say “use a STB” but everything I’ve heard suggests they don’t necessarily amplify or increase the signal.. if you have crap reception, it’s just going to be crap digital reception.

Can anyone throw any light on the matter? Is it a planning regulation, or is there some sort of tax involved ?

What’s Your opinion?

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60 Responses to
Canberra’s distinct lack of aerials
Bartron 12:03 am 13 Jun 07

My neibours have 3 of the friggin UHF, one VHF and something that looks like it belongs on the side of the Millenuim Falcon. Before we got Transact we had rabbit ears…they did the job fine. When something works at an acceptable level, the desire to spend money on it decreases. Since a lot of Canberra is within sight of telstra tower I’d say a lot of people are just fine with whatever the indoor areal picks up.

andy 6:33 pm 12 Jun 07

If we find somewhere with a Fox antenna, I will investigate this option.. thanks S4nta 🙂

S4anta 5:51 pm 12 Jun 07

nope. there are spare bits on the older fox antennas where you can attach your co-ax cable to the dish. however, seeing your preference for not paying for technology i guess your stuck buddy.

soulman 5:43 pm 12 Jun 07

I did a test, plugging my digital tv pc tuner card into both a roof top aerial with mast head amplifier and a 25 year old Thorn brand indoor aerial. The rooftop antenna gave a signal of over 85%, often up to 95%. The bunny ears were not too bad though, coming in at 75-80%. For digital, SD picture was good. HD suffered. Analogue though was crap, though I live in a bit of a black spot below Tuggeranong Hill translator.

andy 5:41 pm 12 Jun 07

WTF ? I barely understand what you mean, except the “for beer” part.

Unless you mean you got one of those adaptors from dicksmith, that adapts the “foxtel” plug to a coax “aerial” plug

S4anta 5:17 pm 12 Jun 07

I have cheated and stuck a kicker onto the foxbox one. its a bloody ripper. will send details for beer.

andy 5:14 pm 12 Jun 07

Personally, I don’t notice it so much, TV being something that sits in the corner most of the time.
My partner feels otherwise however.

I refuse to pay for transact, or foxtel, or anything like that.

I’ve noticed reception at various places i’ve lived at has been ok, but not great. Since we hooked up to the antenna on the complex roof, it’s crystal clear now though.

It was as much a question as to why they aren’t so prevalent here, and I thought it was the big needle like Maelinar said..

Ralph 4:56 pm 12 Jun 07

The other drawback with STBs hooked up to indoor rabbit ears is the tendency for them to respond harshly to ‘impulse noise’ from electrical appliances and so on. This will give you a broken picture for a couple of seconds, a frozen picture and/or clicks and pops in the sound.

Very irritating but the more expensive STBs perform better in this regard. Magnetically shielded cables and connectors should elimate it too.

Tack 4:53 pm 12 Jun 07

First thing (almost) I noticed when I moved to Canberra – GREAT reception for the TV 🙂 Both standard and digital – single set of (cheap) rabbit ears – never missed a beat.

Spectra 4:50 pm 12 Jun 07

Agree with Ralph – depending on how crap the crap signal is, a STB may solve the problem. Naturally, they can’t work with a really lousy signal, but in my experience if the analogue signal is anything you might call “watchable” (eg, a bit of ghosting, some weird, lines, but not just a screen full of blurry fuzz), the digital picture will be perfect. Of course, when a digital picture does start to drop out, it tends to be a lot harsher on the eyes/ears than the gradual drop-off of analogue.

Also, if you want to see external antennae, come to Fraser – being positioned behind Mt Rogers, everyone has an external aerial, many on nice big poles.

Ingeegoodbee 4:36 pm 12 Jun 07

We have a redundant one at our place you’re welcome to take away. Crapy reception is but a distant memory with top quality, crystal clear telly pumped directly into the lounge room care of TransACT.

Maelinar 4:30 pm 12 Jun 07

You know that great whopping ‘hyperdermic’ looking thing on Black Mountain ?

It doesn’t exist in most other cities. Question answered.

roccon 4:27 pm 12 Jun 07

ours is hidden in the roof, but rabbit ears work fine anyway in Belco for me.

Ralph 4:26 pm 12 Jun 07

Not true. I had poor analogue reception on a set of rabbit ears indoors. With the same set of indoor rabbit ears and a STB I have beautiful reception. With digital you either have a signal or you don’t.

VYBerlinaV8 now_with 4:16 pm 12 Jun 07

Some people have aerials inside their ceiling space, and many people live in a strong enough signal that basic rabbit ears do the job fine. I had an antenna put up last year with a signal amplifier (I’m hidden behind Mt Jerrabomberra), and my reception went from mediocre to excellent.

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