Jacksonville: WJXX in 1080i - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 04-20-2002, 05:13 PM - Thread Starter
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I spent some time on the roof today and put up a broadband antenna at about 22 ft above ground. No amp and now get all the digitals as measured on the DTC-100 at 88-98 signal strength. I'm a happy camper!

But the best news is that WJXX 10-1 is transmitting in 1080i tonight! Unfortunately, everything tonight will be upconverted from SD on ABC but tomorrow I see "Alias" is scheduled for HD from ABC. Earlier this week, All I saw was 480P from 10-1.

PS- FYI I am using the Panasonic DST-50 Tuner to measure the signal to verify 1080i vs. 480P. The DTS-100 doesn't have this feature and you just have to be able to see the difference which is difficult with upconverted programming. The new antenna is giving me a solid signal now on all the Jax digitals as well as all the analog channels.
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post #2 of 18 Old 04-20-2002, 09:28 PM
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Don... Looks like you're set with the antenna. I'm not sure what might have changed, but I'm getting pretty solid and steady signals on all DT stations now (13-1 and 13-2 have been a little flaky) on an RS double bow-tie. No change on my end. I htink jeburnett reported something like that as well.

As far as WJXX, are you saying that it "looks" the same as it has been since they started broadcasting on 10-1, but you're able to measure that it is 1080i now (vs 480P) with your Panasonic STB? I have no way on my Zenith DTV1080 to tell that a signal is 1080i other than I can't change the aspect ratio. I have not been able to do that since 10-1 came on, so my STB must not let me change the ratio on 480P and up.

Thanks... Ralph
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post #3 of 18 Old 04-21-2002, 12:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Ralph-

When I was using the TErk 55 antenna, the lower channels were difficult to receive. They still are on that antenna. It doesn't seem to work well in the lower frequency spectrum. The new antenna makes most of the channels I have checked so far about the same receive strength based on power.

Channel 13-1/2 are still coming in about the same and are now the weakest of them all at 58 average on the DTC-100. The strongest now is 10-1 and it is sitting at 98. 42-1 is down a little bit from the Terk at 88 on the meter. All these are with no amplifier. Just antenna and 100 ft of RS quad shielded RG6.

When I switch to the Panasonic DST50 I can pull up a screen that tells me which digital format the signal is and before 10-1 was 480P and tonight it is 1080i.

I did send in a report to Schneider at WJXX regarding my antenna change and the format change observation. While I did congratulate him on upping the scan rate to 1080i, I had to advise him that he needs to consider 720p for ABC. I would think he should know this but it could be it was a mental slip up with all his other responsibilities and just wanted to let him know that we knew ABC is the odd ball with their propensity toward 720P programming.

One good way I can tell a program is coming in at 1080i vs. 480P or 480i on the DTC-100 is to watch for the gray bars. On all lower formats 480p or 480i digital will exhibit gray side bars on a "normal" 4x3 AR setting. If you then switch to a channel at 1080i or 720P the bars will dissappear and be black picture with 480P upconverted to 1080i or full picture when 16x9 and pass through at 1080i. The DTC-100 will upconvert the 720P to 1080i as well. Maybe you can do something like this with the Zenith??? I don't prefer the stretch modes to fill the screen from the 4:3 AR's I think the fat or stretched picture looks stupid! Instead, I resize my screen to fit the picture AR. See my web site on how I do this.
On the Panasonic DST50 I can output the 720P picture at native 720P when the program is 720p (ABC). When this happens I MUST build a new scan rate memory for my projector for 720P as its Horizontal is much higher than the narrow range at 480P, 540P or 1080i. For operation ease, I would prefer ABC or the station to outrput all at 1080i but for academic curiosity, I'd like to see what the difference is between 720P and 1080i picture quality.
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post #4 of 18 Old 04-21-2002, 08:04 AM
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Thanks Don. I'll see if I can use a similar method to determine format.
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post #5 of 18 Old 04-22-2002, 01:34 AM - Thread Starter
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"Alias"- Got only the analog signal upconverted to 1080i. Disappointing! The PQ was very soft and composite video color smearing. Switched to WJXT on true 1080i and the picture was lookiong like real HBO style HDTV.

Maybe I can get some answers on why the WJXX 1080i is not delivering 720P and true HD. They may not yet be able to pull in the HDTV ABC signal off the ABC HD transponder. Anyone else have any ideas?
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post #6 of 18 Old 04-22-2002, 07:04 AM
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Don... That was my guess as well. I'm guessing that this requires an decoder to receive the ABC HD signal, and an encoder to broadcast it to our rabbit ears (or whatever). Maybe they are using the HD encoder that WTLV had on order, but require an ABC-specific decoder to get the HD signal?

As far as 720p or 1080i, I agree that they should send whatever they are getting from the source (in this case 720p) and let the end-user convert as appropriate. I'm sure it'll get adjusted when they start getting the HD signal.

Thanks... Ralph
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post #7 of 18 Old 04-22-2002, 08:53 AM - Thread Starter
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This just in-
In answer to my first question on why 1080i on ABC

"Thanks for the signal report. Our reason for running ABC at 1080i is because we don't want to be running a dual HD standard. 1080i equipment is much more prevalent. At some point we will be inserting HD material on both stations, if we try to insert a 1080i spot into a 720p stream we are concerned about receiver lockup time. So we are planning to do everything in 1080i locally, so upconverting ABC to 1080i seems to be the way to go. But we are still learning and things may change.
Bill"


Still waiting to get an answer on last night's SD broadcast of Alias.
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post #8 of 18 Old 04-22-2002, 10:50 AM
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Don-

That is a bogus reason to sideconvert 720p to 1080i. They should upconvert their WJXX commercials to 720p if they are so concerned. I have never heard of any station doing what they are talking about. Switching formats during commercial breaks sure would cause problems that is why no one does it. Instead ABC affiliates convert everything 480i to 720p so it matches everything coming from the network in 720p HD. I guess they do have a lot to learn especially when they are using the justification that one of their networks, NBC is doing 1080i, and the other is doing ABC is 720p. Sounds to me like they are trying to share assets and in doing so are sacrificing ABC 720p. Good luck to em, getting this mess to work! Apparently they have voluntarily decided not to follow Powels ' voluntary proposal' to pass through what the network sends.! This is what happens when networks make no requirements of affiliates.
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post #9 of 18 Old 04-22-2002, 01:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Satpro-

You guessed it! WJXX and WTLV ABC/NBC are a duopoly and all their news and local stuff sources from one studio. They split the basic feed and downstream key the individual graphics. By doing the 1080i as their studio output standard, they have just one conversion to do. ie 720P to 1080i from the network. I'm not sure I disagree with this strategy. While I would like to "see" 720P for academic interests, I do believe I'd prefer to watch all my HDTV stuff in 1080i anyway. FWIW- I believe most HD receivers in use today do upconvert automatically all 720P to 1080i. I assume that the DTC-100 is probably the most common receiver in use. I could be wrong on this but it is my guess. Others also do this internal conversion. My DST50 does allow it to be configured to 720P output but I also need to reprogram my projector to watch native 720P. From what I have seen in 720P, I'm not impressed. It is a noticeably softer look than true 1080i and motion artifacts are not any more prevalent on 1080i in full bandwidth than 720P. Unfortunately, many 1080i OTA broadcasts are compressing the retransmission to 13.5 Mbit and this does cause a noticeable higher motion artifact content.
So, while I'm disappointed in WJXX decision from an academic angle, I do believe this is the best decision for the general HD viewing public and for a smoother station operating procedure considering the duopoly.
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post #10 of 18 Old 04-28-2002, 08:53 AM
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Just so you know Don. I am pretty sure that 10-1 has always been upconverted 1080i from there first day of startup. Unless they have been going back and forth with formats for testing. I haven't been watching it much since they are not doing any HD yet. From your earlier conversations with them, I wasn't expecting to get it anytime soon. Especially since 13-1 isn't HD yet.

Paul
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post #11 of 18 Old 04-28-2002, 07:43 PM
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I think so too.

So, what we should expect to be different on May 1 is that 42-1 and 42-2 will go full-time and 34-1 will go back on the air? Anything else anyone can thing of?

Thanks... Ralph
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post #12 of 18 Old 04-29-2002, 03:14 PM
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Ralph, I think 42 has been full time for the last couple of days. And yes 34-1 should be back on this week according to the e-mail that I got a few months ago. If not, I will send them an e-mail to see what's up.

Just so everyone knows, 13-1 is now being broadcast in 16:9 1080i upconvert. That makes 10-1, 13-1, and 42-1 all upconverted 1080i whenever I was watching this afternoon when they were talking about the power blackout. Hopefully, you all are back up with power soon. I was only out for a few minutes at the beach.

Hopefully, we will see some more HD on channels other than 42-1 once the deadline passes this week. Looks like they are working pretty hard. (And yes, I understand that SD qualifies for the DTV requirements, but we cannot settle for that. Especially after that showing of the HD Olympics.)

Paul
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post #13 of 18 Old 04-29-2002, 04:07 PM
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I have Direct TV national network feeds for NBC ,ABC,and CBS.When 10-1 and 13-1 pass their network feeds through it is very inferior to my west coast network feeds from Direct TV.10-1 and 13-1 are blurry and dull compared to west coast feeds.The local news looks great.42-1 is better than Direct TV CBS.Any ideas why this is ? Will 10-1,13-1 eventually look better on their non HD network pass through?
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post #14 of 18 Old 04-29-2002, 04:34 PM
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I'll check it out tonight. I think 13-1 should be better tonight. It looks pretty good right now.
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post #15 of 18 Old 04-29-2002, 07:27 PM
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Aim your antennas toward Orlando (or even Tampa)the next couple of nights. It looks like we should be getting some great Tropospheric ducting.
http://www.iprimus.ca/~hepburnw/tropo.html

These are the highest levels I have ever seen in this area!!
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post #16 of 18 Old 04-29-2002, 08:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Paul-

10-1 was 480p for a short while.
13.1 was 480i for a long time and when I spoke to BS back during the Olympics, I had a suggestion that they completely dump 480i and either do 1080i 1080i upconvert or if that is not possible, do 480p as the minimum format. I believe that has resulted in what we are observing today with respect to 480p propincity.
The problem as I think it is with their upconversion of signal to 1080i is that their local stuff and possible netwrog SD too, is all composite video using some older cameras and betacam SP analog video source footage. This is why we have the very soft look on their upconverts. IT has been a little over a year since I was in the channel 12 studio but then it was all composite. WJXT was also composite video throughout the station and everything either betacam or 1" C format. The networks, are all YUV analog unless they are already converted to SDI. Either way the PQ will be stunning compared to these composite studios. FWIW- My edit suites here are all YUV including monitors so I know the difference. In a good HD home theater you Should see the difference you did observe. I have some HD footage from WRAL that was done in their DVCPRO HD format and that is the PQ bottom of the barrel for HDTV but the quality is stunning compared to even YUV betacam SP. Much of that DN demo came from WRAL and was shot with those DVCPRO HD cameras.

Re Blackout- I was shooting a TV show down on Phillips Hwy when the Blackout happened and we had to abort. PIA! Now I have to reschedule the entire May Cable channel 7 linup as the darn show won't be ready for next week. What a PIA!
My wife and I enjoyed a gas grill cookout by the pool. That was nice. Power came back on at 8PM. I watched some lame canned laughter on CBS HD about some dork diving for golfballs as a career move. Can't believe HDTV is making me watch this network stuff!
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post #17 of 18 Old 04-30-2002, 06:31 AM
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Not that I want another outage, but, it was nice to do something a little different (and outdoors) for the evening. Ours came back at 9:30.

When I was watching 13-1 upconverted last night, I began to wonder what I'd do when all (or most) of our locals are in this format, but much of the programming is still 4x3. Particularly NBC, since their prime-time programming is not HD. Neither my TV nor my STB allow me to change the ratio of 480p or greater signals. My concern is burn-in from those black bars on the sides.

It still amazes me the things I'll watch or watch 17 times for the sake of HDTV! Now, if you'll excuse me I have to find out when "The Replacements" comes on again.
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post #18 of 18 Old 04-30-2002, 09:01 AM - Thread Starter
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This is how I deal with the 480P issue-

I reprogrammed my FPTV projector with a memory for 480P
I increased the vertical and horizontal to fill my CRT targets. This prevents burn in. I still have the burn in problem with all 16x9 as this does use a smaller vertical on my targets of the CRT's. 16x9 is the real problem, not 4:3 stuff. Of course if you installed a 16x9 screen with a projector that uses 4:3 targets then you're screwed no matter what!
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