TV Cord Cutting for Dummys

Here’s a 60-day follow-up on our cord cutting experience.

BLUF (Bottom Line Up Front):  The Gubmints Family is happy we cut the cord.Some details –

There was a lot of nail-biting as we struggled to pull in that ‘last’ local TV station (the PBS affiliate).   We went through 4 rooftop antennas and 2 pre-amplifiers (and all permutations in-between) to try to pull in a station with a Noise Margin (NM) of 1.5 dB as listed on (We did not run up a big Visa bill, as we returned items within 14 days if they did not work out).  In the end, we gave up and settled upon the original (and best) antenna/pre-amp combo for our location, which was the Winegard Flatwave Air.

We never consistently pulled in the PBS station, but we DID figure out that PBS has its own free Hulu-like service which runs 2-3 weeks’ worth of programming on and- More importantly – The PBS Roku Channel.  So we get our Masterpiece fix via PBS Roku Channel.

The kids are not lacking for cartoons or action movies (because there’s plenty of that on Netflix and Amazon), the wife still gets to watch her Bachelor/Bachelorette/Tonsil-Hockey-House shows to her heart’s content.  The whole family still gets to DVR and watch Modern Family, etc – and Dad still gets to watch Magnum PI reruns on the DVR.

We’re also happy with the 2-Channel Tablo.  It seems to be more than enough for our viewing needs.  If we were unable to run the Over-The-Air antenna feed to all our TV’s we might feel different, but we are not seeing the need for the 4-Channel Tablo at this point.

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