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post #181 of 4345 Old 11-14-2002, 05:55 PM
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I'm not sure what the answer to that is. Do you have a rotor so that you could try reorientation of the antenna? I've heard that this digital reception is a hit or miss situation. Maybe WBIR-DT has a much reduced power level. If I were in your situation I would possibly consider a separate deep fringe digital UHF only antenna. The salesman at Shield's Electronic Supply where I bought my antenna told me that the older design UHF antennas were not optimized for HDTV for whatever that's worth.
The box that my UHF only antenna came in said that it was specifically optimized for HDTV. I hope that helps.
Larry
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post #182 of 4345 Old 11-14-2002, 07:15 PM
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Sigh. Ok, here goes:

I think I've researched everything I can about HDTV and the options available here in S.A., but I'm having difficulty beating information out of Time Warner about the channels they offer and the quality of such. I really didn't want to play the antenna game again (left that behind in the 70's, I thought), so I had high hopes for TW.

My understanding is they offer one HBO, one Showtime, and currently offer the CBS feed. But previous posts indicated that the signal is not the full 1080i feed, but a compressed version? Does anyone here have a set-up with them that can comment?

Any feedback would be greatly appriciated.
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post #183 of 4345 Old 11-15-2002, 04:50 AM
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Mr Smith,

I have Dish Network instead of TWC, so take my comments with a grain of salt. Time Warner Cable San Antonio has HBO, Showtime, and KENS-DT. Until recently, KENS-DT was running a radar loop on a subchannel of their digital signal. This means that they were sending out a little less than the full data payload that they could dedicate to the 1080i signal. I'm not sure if they were using statistical multiplexing or a fixed division of bandwidth. If it is the former, there (theoretically) should be no degradation in video quality. I've seen both the local CBS HD channel as well as the New York CBS feed. Ever since KENS 5 fixed a local microwave relay issue, the picture quality has been indistinguishable. If TWC is passing through everything that KENS-DT, HBO and Showtime give them, you should be quite happy.

I haven't heard how negotiations are going for cable carriage of the local NBC and ABC station. As you might know, the local Fox, WB, Telemundo and Univision stations are broadcasting an SDTV version of their 480i 4:3 programming. If Grande Communications and Time Warner Cable San Antonio get these stations over a fibre link there would be little reason for them to carry the ATSC channel instead of (or in addition to) the current NTSC feed. KABB and KRRT have some infrastructure issues that have delayed the pass through of 480p widescreen and 1080i. It could be possible for KABB and KRRT to provide HDTV and EDTV to cable before they fix all of the issues for over the air pass through. I haven't talked to anyone at those stations who seemed too enthusiastic about such a solution though.

Finally, if you are already a local cable subscriber who gets HBO and Showtime, the incremental cost of upgrading to an HDTV cable box should be small. Go for it, you can always switch to satellite later if you want to.

Jim

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post #184 of 4345 Old 11-15-2002, 09:13 AM
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Quote:


Originally posted by M.A. Smith
Sigh. Ok, here goes:

I think I've researched everything I can about HDTV and the options available here in S.A., but I'm having difficulty beating information out of Time Warner about the channels they offer and the quality of such. I really didn't want to play the antenna game again (left that behind in the 70's, I thought), so I had high hopes for TW.

My understanding is they offer one HBO, one Showtime, and currently offer the CBS feed. But previous posts indicated that the signal is not the full 1080i feed, but a compressed version? Does anyone here have a set-up with them that can comment?

Any feedback would be greatly appriciated.

I understand your sigh. and your frustration with TWC here in SA.

See this thread http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...hreadid=187534 for some of the frustration I've had on getting HONEST information from them.

I have DirecTV and an antenna. I was having trouble getting KENS and the thought of going with TWC and dumping the dishes and antenna on the side of my house was appealing. But I feel TWC has not been honest with me and it's left a bad taste in my mouth. They've claimed that they have NBC and ABC in HiDef and they've claimed that local NBC and ABC don't even broadcast in HiDef. Neither of those are true. They've basically guaranteed they will have NFL Sunday Ticket next season.

Right now, I'm sticking with what I have. I may check back with them some time next spring, maybe about the time ESPN-HD comes online. I currently get the HD offerings of HBO-HD, HDNet, KENS (CBS), WOAI (NBC) and KSAT (ABC). I could get SHO-HD too, but I haven't bothered to subscribe to it. I haven't made much of an effort to scan for KRRT and KABB's digital offerings yet. I solved my KENS reception issue by removing a couple of pieces of "flat coax" that I was using to pass my antenna feed through a window and plantation shutters.
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post #185 of 4345 Old 11-15-2002, 03:52 PM
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Larry,

Can you give the brand name and number of the UHF antenna you purchased at Shields? Thanks
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post #186 of 4345 Old 11-15-2002, 04:38 PM
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Digital signals are strange. I too had 100% on NBC and 40% on ABC. I just turned my antenna a little and now get 100% both channels. On my Sony HD100 it has a signal strenth meter. I can turn my antenna while my wife reads me the sinal strength. Thats the only way to get it exact. Its very touchy. So play around with it until you get a full signal. Of course you have to do this between the hours of 8pm and 11pm when they are transmitting.

By the way I use a $20 Jensen UHF/VHF antenna from Sears that they sell for all their HD sets to get OTA. Works great. I have it located in my attic.

Can't wait for CBS to get online.

Troy

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post #187 of 4345 Old 11-16-2002, 06:26 AM
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Many thanks joealtus and JimboG, that is *exactly* the information I was looking for. I have no idea how I missed that other Time Warner thread in my search. I'm afraid it is exactly as I feared - there are around three people at TWSA who know what's going on with HD, and they keep that information to themselves. Everyone else gets a "fact sheet" and will make up answers to questions not addressed on that sheet. In addition, they're going to take the cheapest route to HD that will still enable them to fill in that "we offer HD" checkbox.

Most unfortunate.
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post #188 of 4345 Old 11-16-2002, 06:38 AM
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Now that most SA stations have some type of HD, I am now seriously considering making the plunge. With so many different sets, 16x9, 4x3, projection, plasma, standard CRT, STB's....I really don't know what to do! I do not want the set to take over my den. I saw a 42" projection set at Costco for about $1200. Nice picture but I am not sure that the screen is big enough.

I know this is a very open-ended questions, but what's the most cost effective way to dive-in to HD?
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post #189 of 4345 Old 11-16-2002, 07:56 AM
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I am in the west end of Oak Ridge (about 20-25 miles from Sharps Ridge) and have a Channelmaster 3000A omnidirectional amplified antenna in my attic. I get WATEDT at >80% and WBIRDT closer to 60% with occasional dropouts.

Does anyone know if WBIRDT has something funny with their PSIP info? It doesn't map into 10.1 on my program guide (I have a SONY HD200 Directv+OTA receiver). WATEDT maps into 6.1 just fine. WBIR stays at 31.1 and 31.2 which is a pain since there is no program guide info attached to it. The program guide has a slot for PAXDT but there is no signal there - anyone know what channel they are on and if they are really up. I don't see FOX Digital either.

Thom
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post #190 of 4345 Old 11-16-2002, 12:00 PM
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LightBulb,

The absolutely most cost effective way to dive into HDTV is to get either an HDTV tuner card for your computer for $300-400 or get an open box (demo or returned) HDTV set top box from Best Buy or Circuit City for anywhere between $150 and perhaps $350 or $400. You can then use the VGA output from a receiver like the RCA DTC-100 or the Dish 6000 to connect to a <$400 21" or 19" computer monitor. You'll have to use the vertical size control to squish the picture down for proper geometry on a 16:9 image, but you should have an excellent picture on the cheap. A decent quality computer monitor will look as good or better than most CRT rear projection televisions. For local over the air HDTV reception, get a Radioshack double bowtie on closeout for ~$5 or you can get the Zenith Silver Sensor from Circuit City for $30. If you want a good low cost outdoor antenna, try the Channelmaster 4221 for about $25. Lowe's is supposed to have Channelmaster antennae and you may be able to find them at Home Depot. Not sure about Home Depot.

The gear that I mention above is about the cheapest way to get into HDTV. It will also give you a decent idea of what HDTV looks like and what kind of reception you're likely to get at your location. If pleased with watching HDTV on your computer monitor, you may wish to purchase a decent sized HDTV. There are a ton of threads on this forum about 16:9 versus 4:3. Do a search if you want lots of opinions on the subject. Personally, I think it is better to have your highest quality image (HDTV and DVD) take up the largest amount of your viewing area. Since these high quality sources are 16:9 anyway, I'd recommend going with a 16:9 TV. If you think you will spend more than 50% of your time watching legacy 4:3 cable channels, you may want to go with a 4:3 HDTV. Just be aware that most folks who buy an HDTV find themselves watching a lot more HD programming than they may have originally planned on.

Your budget, decor, spousal approval and lighting control will determine which type of HDTV is right for you. Unfortunately, there is a big difference between 16:9 and 4:3 direct view (glass tube) TVs. The RCA 38" direct view TV is a steal at closeout prices of $1200-$1400. It also includes a built in RCA HDTV receiver. Other than that model, most of the Sony and Toshiba 34" 16:9 HDTVs are horrifically overpriced. You can get a 50" or larger rear projection HDTV for the price of a direct view 34" Sony or Toshiba. Not a good value unless space is really at a premium in your home.

Hmm, where to get the best deal on that new HDTV? If you don't know a lot about HDTV and you want a place that will do a competent installation of all your gear, your best bet would be to go to Bjorn's. If you know what you want (or are willing to spend a little time learning about it) you could try traditional brick and mortar retailers like Best Buy, Circuit City, Conn's or Sears. Finally, if you want a very good price and are willing to buy off the internet, some of the best web-based retailers include amazon.com and oncall.com . I managed to buy a Toshiba 57H82 from Amazon for $2100 delivered. Not too shabby, since Best Buy wants $2500 plus tax and delivery for the exact same model. Look around and you can find a good deal. Just make sure that any internet retailer you consider is reliable. Places like Crazy Eddies don't quite have a spotless reputation. Look around on places like AVS Forum and www.***************.com and you'll do all right.

Best of luck with your new purchase!

Jim

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post #191 of 4345 Old 11-19-2002, 07:32 AM
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I have been really impressed by Siegfried Riedel of Bjorn's. He is a GREAT resource for San Antonio HD enthusiasts. Check out www.isfcalibration.com. Siegfried has performed above and beyond the call of duty for me.

I have an F38310, RCA directview CRT which had several pixels out (blocked with garbage in the screen). The problem was cosmetic as you couldn't tell from viewing distance, but it was nagging knowing it was there. I checked around Austin and didn't find anyone I could trust to look at it.

Siegfried arranged with an RCA shop to perform the CRT replacement under warranty "because I'd like to do the calibration on your set". He made an initial "evaluation" visit to call in the problem to RCA. Getting a good tube took two tries -- there was even more garbage in the mask of the second tube than the first. After the tube replacement he performed the ISF calibration on my set. Siegfried has made three visits, with one final one for final calibration coming soon.

Siegfried has been great -- four trips to Austin total. He hasn't charged me extra for travel time. He seems to really know his stuff -- he had never worked on an F38310 before but he seemd to have no problems at all. Even if you don't buy from Bjorn's think about calling in Siegfried for a set calibration.

I love what he has done for my set -- and am looking forward to the final tweaks.

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post #192 of 4345 Old 11-22-2002, 08:10 AM
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JimboG and all -


After much searching at various times of the day and night, I cannot get a digital signal for Fox / KABB. I was, however, stunned with the clarity of the digital signal from our two local Spanish channels!

Oh well....

Deltoid

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post #193 of 4345 Old 11-22-2002, 11:01 AM
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Deltoid,

Far be it from me to suggest that KABB's commitment to (H)DTV is weak just because Univision and Telemundo have a stronger, better signal.

Jim

P.S. Anybody else try for KABB-DT?

Free over the air HDTV + Tivo HD + Netflix for Blu-ray and streaming = Bliss
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post #194 of 4345 Old 11-22-2002, 11:59 AM - Thread Starter
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The other day, I scanned for digital 30 and acquired it! Mapped to 29-1. Trying to view it, signal strength was "Poor". I would occasionally see a fractured picture and bursts of sound, but nothing usable. I'm 1 1/2 miles outside 410 along Vance Jackson. RS vu-190 antenna on rotator.
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post #195 of 4345 Old 11-22-2002, 12:15 PM
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I've searched a number of times, but never been able to acquire KABB. When I scan channel 30 on my HD200, it takes it a long time to decide there's nothing there, which makes me think it's seeing something, but it's not strong enough to get excited about.
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post #196 of 4345 Old 11-23-2002, 06:10 AM
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Quote:


Originally posted by sfmartin
The other day, I scanned for digital 30 and acquired it! Mapped to 29-1. Trying to view it, signal strength was "Poor". I would occasionally see a fractured picture and bursts of sound, but nothing usable. I'm 1 1/2 miles outside 410 along Vance Jackson. RS vu-190 antenna on rotator.

sfmartin,

You're doing a lot better than I am. I have been able to see some signal on my receiver, but it rapidly flashes back to zero, suggesting a lack of sync lock or equalizer lock. I think my preamp may be getting overloaded by KHCE (which is kind of near my house) or even by KABB's analog signal. Who knows. I'm able to get every other digital signal in San Antonio. Hell, I've even been able to lock on onto one of the Austin stations and get the same brief pictures and snippets of sound that you're getting on KABB. This suggests that it's not just my setup that's wrong. KABB is doing entirely too half-assed of an effort around here.

Just so I can try to troubleshoot my reception issues, which receiver are you using? Do you have a preamp attached to your antenna or not?

Jim

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post #197 of 4345 Old 11-23-2002, 07:56 AM
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WBIR-DT doesn't map onto 10 anymore. It used to, but now it maps onto 31-1 and 31-2. There is no program information listed in the guide anyway. At least that's the way it is on my Panasonic TU-HDS20. Also for some reason WATE-DT maps several places and not just on 6-1 for some reason.
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post #198 of 4345 Old 11-23-2002, 10:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Zenith DTV-1080. No preamp. Signal split 2 ways. Maybe sending the whole signal to the Zenith would help. I'll give it a try sometime.
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post #199 of 4345 Old 11-25-2002, 08:24 PM
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I finally got some HDTV. My Samsung 165 receiver finally arrived after 3 months of waiting. During that time, I installed a Channel Master Model 4228 8-Bay bowtie antenna and Channel Master 7775 UHF preamp on the mast. I live in Alcoa near the SuperWalmart, and the reception is excellent on all channels, even analog WBXX from Crossville (about 70 miles away and a different direction than Sharp's Ridge that it is pointed at). This arrangement works very well. The tonight show is outstanding. Thanks everyone here and in the other HDTV forums for all the help to get to this point.

Steve
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post #200 of 4345 Old 11-27-2002, 10:24 AM
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Can I ask where you bought your Channel Master 4228 and 7775 preamp?
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post #201 of 4345 Old 11-27-2002, 01:31 PM
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Can anyone report what Power the Stations are broacasting at? It is my understanding that they will need to be at 100% before I can recieve them here in Crossville.
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post #202 of 4345 Old 12-01-2002, 09:58 PM
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Sharpie 2000

I purchased the Channel Master 4228 and 7775 by phone from Stark Wholesale Electronics , Inc.(508-756-7136 or http:/www.starkelectronic.com). The antenna was $50.68 with an additional $27.37 for shipping (it is shipped in rather large box), and the amp was $58.19 with $6.86 shipping. With a coupon for purchasing Samsung 165 and any HDTV antenna, I will get rebate of $50 (cost of antenna - up to maximum of $50) from Samsung for purchasing the antenna. Sorry that I was slow in responding, but Thanksgiving and things made it hectic recently. I hope this info helps.

Steve
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post #203 of 4345 Old 12-02-2002, 04:26 PM
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There is an article in today's New Sentinel that Comcast has launched HDTV via cable in Knoxville. The article says that customers may now receive HDTV from WBIR (NBC), WATE (ABC), HBO, Showtime, and soon WVLT (CBS). The article says that it is available now at no extra charge other than the regular charge for a digital STB. This differs from the last article about this which said that this would be delayed until several years in the future because new contracts with the local stations had to be signed when they came up for renewal.
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post #204 of 4345 Old 12-03-2002, 01:45 PM
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I picked up the motorola 5100 hdtv stb from the Asheville Highway Comcast location this afternoon. They were unsure at first whether I had to schedule an installation but let me have it over the counter after finding one in back. I spent a little while checking out A.I. on HBO this afternoon, it looked really good. You have to set the box to 1080i from 480i in the setup menu, which is accessed by pressing the menu button while the box is off. Right now they are charging the same price as for digital cable-$9.95 just for box rental or $14.95 to get the digital music channels and a few others. I signed up for HBO as well but was receiving Showtime this afternoon also. I haven't had time to watch much but it looks like the local channels so far are WBIR and WATE.
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post #205 of 4345 Old 12-06-2002, 10:04 AM
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FYI, Forum readers, KENS-DT have begun upgrading the HD service. No, we have not increased power. (Don't I wish we could!) We are testing some new approaches and we'd like your feedback. We also believe we have finally discovered the random "hiccup" that causes momentary macroblocking of your picture as well as an audio void; final fixes should be in place early next week, but over the weekend we would like to know if you see a perceptible difference.

I'll check in several times each day to check for posts; I'd sure appreciate hearing from anyone who notices a difference in KENS-DT. Thanks and best regards,

Yours in DTV,
Jerry Paonessa
Retired Video and RF Engineer

 

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post #206 of 4345 Old 12-06-2002, 01:23 PM
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Thanks for the info Jerry.....I noticed that last night i was receiving 5-2, it appeared to be the same as 5-1....I used to get nothing on 5-2

Using hughes E-86/signal 100%
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post #207 of 4345 Old 12-06-2002, 03:05 PM
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Jerry,

I'll be checking out KENS-DT tonight and tomorrow and will post any findings.

I have one other question. When Letterman goes HD will you guys have any way of timeshifting the HD to start at 11PM? If not, have you considered sending the HD on through at 10:30? I would suppose that barring one of these two things we will not be getting Letterman at all in HD. Correct?

Thanks
JohnR
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post #208 of 4345 Old 12-07-2002, 08:50 PM
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Jerry,

Whatever you guys did it worked great. I watched the SEC Championship game today and The District after that and never had one glitch the whole time. Normally I would get one every couple of minutes or so.

Thanks for whatever you changed!

JohnR
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post #209 of 4345 Old 12-08-2002, 07:31 PM
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Jerry,

I'm using a Samsung T150 and I'm just above Sea World don't get a strong signal but it has been rock solid all weekend. Looks like you have hit on whatever it was that has been causing the hiccups for the past couple of weeks.....thanks for all your efforts and for your great communications to the group.

Sandy1202
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post #210 of 4345 Old 12-09-2002, 09:25 AM
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[quote]Originally posted by JohnRichmond
[b]Jerry,

When Letterman goes HD will you guys have any way of timeshifting the HD to start at 11PM? If not, have you considered sending the HD on through at 10:30? I would suppose that barring one of these two things we will not be getting Letterman at all in HD. Correct?

Thanks for your comment, John. You probably know that we have no hardware (yet) to time shift Letterman when that show becomes HD; We could easily broadcast Letterman when it runs at 10:35, but CBS may have other options available for HDTV affiliates. I have not heard of any plans about any HDTV rollout of the Letterman show to date.

Maybe by the time Letterman IS HDTV, we will have HDVTR's to place programming where we want it. Stay tuned.

Yours in DTV,
Jerry Paonessa
Retired Video and RF Engineer

 

"If we knew what we were doing, it wouldn't be called Research." - Albert Einstein

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