ABC O&O's destroy HD quality with launch of Live Well HD. - Page 11 - AVS Forum
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post #301 of 354 Old 03-05-2010, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by homcom View Post

Comcast is working with many local stations to provide different advertising on the fiber feed then from what is on the OTA feed.

This is true here in the Sacramento market. Comcast is paying for the playback, switching, and digital compression equipment installed at local stations so that local stations can provide a separate feed to Comcast via a fiber link. As far as I know this is being used only to play different versions of Comcast's own spots. The local ABC staion where I previously worked has installed equipment to be able to play different commercials on the Comcast SD and HD feeds. In other words three different versions of Comcast spot can be fed out at the same time. One to the Comcast SD viewers, another to the Comcast HD viewers, and a third to all other viewers. I know the local FOX station has also done this and had to purchase a second FOX splicer to do so. They can only play out two versions at once. One for all Comcast viewers and another to all other viewers. I assume other local stations are in the process of or have done the same.

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post #302 of 354 Old 03-05-2010, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Rory Boyce View Post

This is true here in the Sacramento market. Comcast is paying for the playback, switching, and digital compression equipment installed at local stations so that local stations can provide a separate feed to Comcast via a fiber link. As far as I know this is being used only to play different versions of Comcast's own spots. The local ABC staion where I previously worked has installed equipment to be able to play different commercials on the Comcast SD and HD feeds. In other words three different versions of Comcast spot can be fed out at the same time. One to the Comcast SD viewers, another to the Comcast HD viewers, and a third to all other viewers. I know the local FOX station has also done this and had to purchase a second FOX splicer to do so. They can only play out two versions at once. One for all Comcast viewers and another to all other viewers. I assume other local stations are in the process of or have done the same.

Is added gear too costly that would permit fiber delivery of "full 720p" (without multicasting effects) from stations to cable head ends? Or is it too far out for a cable head end to use a satellite network downlink to obtain a "full 720p" (or 1080) program signal but then sync in local adds from station signals when necessary? -- John
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post #303 of 354 Old 03-05-2010, 03:05 PM
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Originally Posted by John Mason View Post

Is added gear too costly that would permit fiber delivery of "full 720p" (without multicasting effects) from stations to cable head ends? Or is it too far out for a cable head end to use a satellite network downlink to obtain a "full 720p" (or 1080) program signal but then sync in local adds from station signals when necessary? -- John

Besides the extra cost of doing a full bandwidth HD feed there is the problem of what to do with the subchannels that are carried on cable. Cable companies can just take the stations full transport stream and MUX it together with another local station and carry 2 Local HD stations plus whatever subchannels are in the transport stream in one QAM. If there were a full bandwidth HD stream without the sub channels being used by cable, then another QAM would have to be used to carry the sub channels. That extra QAM is bandwidth most systems don't have.
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post #304 of 354 Old 03-05-2010, 03:40 PM
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Here's a TSReader image that I took of WABC last night (3/4) after running it for a little over 10 minutes.



It definitely appears that they've given LWHD more bandwidth recently. Be on the lookout for this at an O&O near you.
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post #305 of 354 Old 03-05-2010, 03:48 PM
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Also keep in mind that most cable providers other than Comcast and Verizon (and maybe Cox) are recompressing HD local channels to 3 pack them. TWC Los Angeles has ABC LiveWell, Ion, and Telemundo on one channel; the 2 PBS stations plus MNT on another; NBC, CBS, and CW on a third; and ABC, KCAL, and Fox on a fourth. TWC Dallas has CW, MNT, and Ion on the same QAM. Not only do most providers not care about giving better quality HD, they don't even care about giving the same quality HD as one can get via antenna.
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post #306 of 354 Old 03-05-2010, 03:55 PM
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If you were responding to me, I forgot to mention that I was capturing the signal from OTA.
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post #307 of 354 Old 03-05-2010, 04:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Mason View Post

Is added gear too costly that would permit fiber delivery of "full 720p" (without multicasting effects) from stations to cable head ends? Or is it too far out for a cable head end to use a satellite network downlink to obtain a "full 720p" (or 1080) program signal but then sync in local adds from station signals when necessary? -- John

There is no reason equipment wise on the station end or due to the fiber link that a higher data rate HD feed could not be sent to Comcast at least for the ABC station I worked for. The fiber link is ASI and is thus not a bandwidth limiter. I would guess it would be the same for all stations except FOX because of their use of the splicer. The issues would be on Comcast's end because the total data rate for the multplex sent to them would then be above the 19.4 megabits that can be sent OTA. Comcast would need to be willing to deal with that. I do not know if there would be any issues with sending one provider higher quality pictures than the others receive.

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post #308 of 354 Old 03-05-2010, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homcom View Post

Besides the extra cost of doing a full bandwidth HD feed there is the problem of what to do with the subchannels that are carried on cable. Cable companies can just take the stations full transport stream and MUX it together with another local station and carry 2 Local HD stations plus whatever subchannels are in the transport stream in one QAM. If there were a full bandwidth HD stream without the sub channels being used by cable, then another QAM would have to be used to carry the sub channels. That extra QAM is bandwidth most systems don't have.

Guess I must be missing something. "Full bandwidth", meaning "full 720p" without multicasting limitations in this case, would seemingly occupy ~1/2 to ~1/3 of a cable 256 QAM slot normally (~40 Mbps)--without any bit rate reduction from subchannels. If a special full-720p signal was being fed to a cable head end that would provide top PQ to most (75+%?) station viewers via cable, then the station subchannels can be muxed in anywhere on cable, using other QAMs if necessary. While the stations are strictly limited to ~19 Mbps OTA ATSC, hurting HD PQ if too much is lopped off HD-only spectrum for multicasting, cable/DBS has 'room' to squeeze in subchannels anywhere within their spectrum or even use video-switching (cable) for seldom-watched material (subchannel not delivered unless requested). -- John
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post #309 of 354 Old 03-06-2010, 06:37 PM
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WABC gave 1 to 2 megs back to WABC-DT 7.1 and it looks 100% better.
The video on the Oprah Oscar Special looks HD and the abc bug is clean and sharp.
When the show first aired the video had a soft SD 16:9 look and the abc bug was soft and blurry.
I only hope this change is not just for the Academy Awards on Sunday,

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post #310 of 354 Old 03-08-2010, 06:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Mason View Post

Guess I must be missing something. "Full bandwidth", meaning "full 720p" without multicasting limitations in this case, would seemingly occupy ~1/2 to ~1/3 of a cable 256 QAM slot normally (~40 Mbps)--without any bit rate reduction from subchannels. If a special full-720p signal was being fed to a cable head end that would provide top PQ to most (75+%?) station viewers via cable, then the station subchannels can be muxed in anywhere on cable, using other QAMs if necessary. While the stations are strictly limited to ~19 Mbps OTA ATSC, hurting HD PQ if too much is lopped off HD-only spectrum for multicasting, cable/DBS has 'room' to squeeze in subchannels anywhere within their spectrum or even use video-switching (cable) for seldom-watched material (subchannel not delivered unless requested). -- John

Agree completely. Sat companies could install (and possibly share) MPEG4 encoders on site at stations. I've read that remote stat muxing is possible (Tandberg). Eventually cable companies may go with MPEG4 as the sat providers have done. For the sat companies, a direct feed from baseband video at a station using MPEG4 at around 10Mbs would probably be significantly better than OTA. If nothing else they should start doing that on the NY and LA stations.
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post #311 of 354 Old 03-08-2010, 07:17 PM
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Agree completely. Sat companies could install (and possibly share) MPEG4 encoders on site at stations.

Can't happen with Fox stations.

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post #312 of 354 Old 03-08-2010, 07:58 PM
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I've said that it wouldn't benefit Fox affiliates, but technically it would help local material like syndication and sports. The local to network switch could be accomplished by decoding the ASI feed into the splicer from the IRD and doing a baseband switch in parallel to the splicer switch. One could also just decode the output of the splicer during network time and delay the local baseband video to match the ATSC encoder delay and use a downstream baseband 2x1. It could be done, and without disrupting the normal splicer operation.
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post #313 of 354 Old 03-08-2010, 08:39 PM
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I've said that it wouldn't benefit Fox affiliates, but technically it would help local material like syndication and sports.

Sorry, missed that posting. Certainly wouldn't help my local affiliate, as it, and the local NBC affiliate, are still SD. No HD infrastructure at either.

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The local to network switch could be accomplished by decoding the ASI feed into the splicer from the IRD and doing a baseband switch in parallel to the splicer switch. One could also just decode the output of the splicer during network time and delay the local baseband video to match the ATSC encoder delay and use a downstream baseband 2x1. It could be done, and without disrupting the normal splicer operation.

As I understand the rules from Fox, doing any rewiring of either of the racks will result in them putting the wiring back to their spec and charge the station for doing that work. They have very strict rules about their stuff.

Besides that, since the ASI output has 4 HD streams, you cannot reliably know which of the 4 streams is currently being selected by the splicer.

Ya, doing something after the splicer is allowed. But, you don't get any improvement with Fox video, no matter where you pick it off, since it is no better than 14.5 Mbps (avg).

At least with the other networks, the sat feeds are of a much higher bitrate.

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post #314 of 354 Old 03-09-2010, 08:00 AM
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Yeah I was thinking about the muxing. And it's true that the Fox network material would have no improvement. But, from a technical standpoint, it could be done. OTH, 15Mbs does pretty well for 720p so it's sort of a moot point. If only the ABC O&Os had that bit rate for the primary channel. I think ABC and NBC affiliates (especially O&Os) would have the greatest benefit from a separate feed. Even CBS affiliates could have better quality as a full 19Mbs channel can't always keep up on challenging material.
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post #315 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 09:07 AM
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Scripps Stations On Board With ABC'S Live Well Network

Nine new outlets affiliate with "home, health and lifestyle" channel

By Michael Malone -- Broadcasting & Cable, 5/26/2011 11:30:55 AM

Nine Scripps stations have signed up to affiliate with ABC's Live Well Network, a digital "home, health and lifestyle" channel that's programmed by the ABC-owned stations.

The Scripps stations included in the new agreement are ABC affiliates in Detroit, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Phoenix, Tampa and Baltimore, and NBC affiliates in Kansas City, West Palm Beach and Tulsa.


Not part of the deal is Scripps' independent KMCI Lawrence (KS).

"Scripps creates vibrant, multiplatform marketplaces for advertisers by delivering large and engaged audiences that are attracted to our high-quality programming," said Brian Lawlor, senior vice president of the Scripps television division. "Live Well Network reinforces our commitment to meaningful content with its compelling array of original TV series about beauty, fashion, health, home, personal finance and other lifestyle topics."

The Scripps batch joins 16 other affiliates of Live Well: eight ABC-owned, five Belo stations, two from Lilly Broadcasting and one from LKK Group. The announcement extends Live Well Network's reach to 40% of U.S. television households, said ABC in a statement.

ABC said Live Well "expects additional affiliation agreements to be announced shortly."

The deal with Belo, involving five stations, was announced in September.

Rebecca Campbell, president of the ABC Owned Television Stations Group, said the Scripps pact gives Live Well considerable momentum. "We look forward to working closely with these community-spirited stations committed to providing top quality programming that is attractive to local advertisers," she said.

http://www.broadcastingcable.com/art...ll_Network.php

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post #316 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 10:29 AM
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The Scripps stations included in the new agreement are ABC affiliates in Detroit, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Phoenix, Tampa and Baltimore, and NBC affiliates in Kansas City, West Palm Beach and Tulsa.

Oh joy. So much for picture quality.
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post #317 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 11:22 AM
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"Scripps creates vibrant, multiplatform marketplaces for advertisers by delivering large and engaged audiences that are attracted to our high-quality programming," said Brian Lawlor, senior vice president of the Scripps television division.
Any potential advertiser that falls for this load of BS deserves to get fleeced.

"Vibrant"? "Large audiences"? "High-quality programming"?

Ha ha.
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post #318 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 12:02 PM
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Here in Knoxville, we don't have that channel yet. But I have noticed a worse picture on our ABC station for some time.
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post #319 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 12:12 PM
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They're "conditioning" you.
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post #320 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 12:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus Carr View Post
Scripps Stations On Board With ABC'S Live Well Network

Nine new outlets affiliate with "home, health and lifestyle" channel

By Michael Malone -- Broadcasting & Cable, 5/26/2011 11:30:55 AM

Nine Scripps stations have signed up to affiliate with ABC's Live Well Network, a digital "home, health and lifestyle" channel that's programmed by the ABC-owned stations.

The Scripps stations included in the new agreement are ABC affiliates in Detroit, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Phoenix, Tampa and Baltimore, and NBC affiliates in Kansas City, West Palm Beach and Tulsa.


Not part of the deal is Scripps' independent KMCI Lawrence (KS).

"Scripps creates vibrant, multiplatform marketplaces for advertisers by delivering large and engaged audiences that are attracted to our high-quality programming," said Brian Lawlor, senior vice president of the Scripps television division. "Live Well Network reinforces our commitment to meaningful content with its compelling array of original TV series about beauty, fashion, health, home, personal finance and other lifestyle topics."

The Scripps batch joins 16 other affiliates of Live Well: eight ABC-owned, five Belo stations, two from Lilly Broadcasting and one from LKK Group. The announcement extends Live Well Network's reach to 40% of U.S. television households, said ABC in a statement.

ABC said Live Well "expects additional affiliation agreements to be announced shortly."

The deal with Belo, involving five stations, was announced in September.

Rebecca Campbell, president of the ABC Owned Television Stations Group, said the Scripps pact gives Live Well considerable momentum. "We look forward to working closely with these community-spirited stations committed to providing top quality programming that is attractive to local advertisers," she said.

http://www.broadcastingcable.com/art...ll_Network.php
Oh no.

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post #321 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 01:12 PM
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Oh no.
Yep. Next up, subchannels on WWJ.
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Oh dear.
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Guess what? Much ado about nothing at this point (when it comes to Scripps stations carrying the channel). Most of them have already been transmitting subchannels (usually weather subchannels, or in WXYZ's case RTV, or in WMAR's case an SD version of that station's main channel), and Scripps will simply replace whatever is currently airing on most if not all of the subchannels with LiveWell. The Scripps stations will likely transmit their LiveWell subchannels in letterboxed 4:3 SD (or perhaps 16:9 widescreen SD), not HD. The Belo stations' LiveWell subchannels are only SD, not HD.
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post #325 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 06:25 PM
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Even if Live Well is only in SD, if it's replacing an extremely low-bit weather channel, they're still most likely going to need to swipe some bits for it.
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post #326 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 07:48 PM
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WABC-DT has two LiveWell subs one in "HD" and one in SD
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post #327 of 354 Old 05-26-2011, 08:13 PM
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KFSN, the ABC O&O station in Fresno, devotes more bandwidth to Live Well than ABC network programming. When I was there two weeks ago, Modern Family averaged 7.5 mbps. Ouch.
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post #328 of 354 Old 05-27-2011, 06:21 AM
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Does the addition of subchannels affect the main channel when the provider is FiOS? Is this only an OTA concern?
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post #329 of 354 Old 05-27-2011, 06:54 AM
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Quote:
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Does the addition of subchannels affect the main channel when the provider is FiOS? Is this only an OTA concern?

Depends.

If the provider gets the signal OTA, then the video can not be any better than what is sent out via the station, OTA.

If the provider gets a direct feed, but it is the output of the equipment that feeds the transmitter, it is exactly like the above.

The ONLY way that a provider can have video quality better than OTA is if the station sends a high bitrate feed of each of the video streams they are airing before they go into the OTA encoders and mux. That might be happening in the very largest cities, but I doubt it.

As a general rule, what the OTA viewer gets is what providers send to their subscribers.

Forum members will have to post if they know for sure that a station, or stations, provides a high bitrate feed to local providers..

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post #330 of 354 Old 05-27-2011, 07:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dm145 View Post

WABC-DT has two LiveWell subs one in "HD" and one in SD

WLS, the ABC O&O in Chicago, does the same thing.  Since it broadcasts on two frequencies -- RF7 and RF44 (supposedly RF7 is temporary but there's no end in sight) -- we actually have LiveWell on four subchannels, which are at least three more than needed.
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