Kansas City, MO - HDTV - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8916 Old 03-04-2003, 10:33 PM - Thread Starter
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On one of the various threads complaining about KCTV's lack of HD, someone mentioned that there didn't appear to be an "Official" Kansas City HDTV thread. So, I've decided to create one. Feel free to use this thread to comment about any of the Kansas City area DTV stations. They are:

ADMIN EDIT: This is the latest info as of 9 oct 05

4.1 WDAF-DT 720P 34 FOX-HD 720P
5.1 KCTV-DT 1080I 24 CBS-HD 1080I
9.1 KMBC-DT 720P 7 ABC-HD 720P
19.1 KCPT-DT 720P 18 PBS-HD 1080I
19.2 KCPT-DT 480 18 PBS 480I
29.1 KCWE-DT 1080I 31 UPN-HD 1080I
38.1 KMCI-DT 1080I 36 INDEPENDENT
41.1 KSHB-DT 1080I 42 NBC-HD 1080I
50.1-4 KPXE-DT 480 51 "I" 480I
62.1 KSMO-DT 1080I 47 WB-HD 1080I

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The following is the old info that was posted when this thread was started:

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KMBC-DT ABC (Analog 9 - Digital 7)

KMBC-DT is broadcasting on VHF channel 7 at 85,000 watts. They are passing ABC's 720P programming.

KCTV-DT CBS (Analog 5 - Digital 21)

KCTV-DT is broadcast on UHF channel 21 at 225,000 watts from a temporary antenna. KCTV-DT is only passing the station's 480i signal.

KCPT-DT PBS (Analog 19 - Digital 18)

KCPT-DT is broadcast on UHF channel 18 at 48,000 watts. Currently, they are multicasting 4 480i, 4:3 channels. Occasionally, they pass new PBS HD programming in 1080i.

WDAF-DT Fox (Analog 4 - Digital 34)

WDAF-DT is broadcast on UHF channel 34 at a 1,100 watts. Eventually they will be 100,000 watts, but currently they are at 2000 watts with a test antenna. They do not expect to be at full power until KSHB moves off the WDAF tower..

Fox produces nothing in HD. The highest quality format Fox transmits is 16:9 480P. This is the format they used for the 2002 Super Bowl.

KCWE-DT UPN (Analog 29 - Digital 31)

KCWE-DT is broadcast on UHF channel 31 at 525,000 watts.

UPN does not produce any HD yet or even 480P widescreen. KCWE is currently upconverting their programming from 480i to 720P.

KSMO-DT WB (Analog 62 - Digital 47)

KSMO-DT is broadcast on UHF channel 47 at 9,000 watts.

Sadly, KSMO-DT had an HD encoder when they first went on the air, but the station owner removed it and sent it to KSMO's sister station in St. Louis. Their chief engineer is a fan of HD, and hopes to convince management to replace it soon.

Not yet on

KSHB-DT NBC (Analog 41 - Digital 42)

KSHB-DT will eventually be broadcast on UHF channel 42. Adjacent channels, like KCPT's analog 19 - digital 18, require both antennas to be at the same location. KSHB's analog transmitter is on the WDAF tower. Their application states that the WDAF tower would require "extensive strengthening" to support both a full-power WDAF-DT and KSHB-DT. Their other alternative is to build a new tower. According to reports, it is currently under construction.

Feel free to correct this information, and I'll incorporate the changes.
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post #2 of 8916 Old 03-05-2003, 07:29 AM
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Good work Chris. Do you know if there is any "official" word that KSHB-DT will broadcast in 1080i when they go live, supposedly in June? I know we discussed on the other thread that it would be suicide for them to consider multi-casting SD but I don't believe I've heard an official plan from them. Thanks.
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post #3 of 8916 Old 03-05-2003, 07:39 AM
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Also, according to titantv, it looks like KCMI and KPXE are going live this spring. Any information on these stations and their proposed broadcast plan?

Digital Stations Coming Soon
IND 36 KMCI-DT Apr 1 2003 (KSHB sister station - same SD/HD broadcasts??)
NBC 42 KSHB-DT Apr 1 2003 (extension filed for Sept 1st - rumored to go live June 1st)
PAX 51 KPXE-DT May 1 2003
PBS 23 KTWU-DT May 1 2003
TBN 21 KTAJ-DT Under Review
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post #4 of 8916 Old 03-05-2003, 06:45 PM
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Comcast Cable is planning on launching HDTV this Spring 2003. Comcast is just about ready to roll and has started a list of customers to receive their first shipment of HDTV set-top-boxes. HDTV is moving forward in Kansas City. Best Buy is really starting to push their Over-the-Air set top boxes with the OTA boxes now on display next to the HDTV's. HDTV's are down to $699.00 at Best Buy along with Sears, Walmart, Brandsmarts, Radio Shack, Circuit City and many other business selling HDTV'S. Sears and Walmart are also selling Dish Network Model 6000 OTA boxes in some of their stores.
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post #5 of 8916 Old 03-06-2003, 10:50 AM
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Quote:


Originally posted by macman
Also, according to titantv, it looks like KCMI and KPXE are going live this spring. Any information on these stations and their proposed broadcast plan?

KMCI is an independent station, also owned by Scipps-Howard along with KSHB (NBC). The two digital and two analog transmitters for the two stations will all share a new tower near Hillcrest Country Club (about 81st and Blue River Road). I would suspect that the digital transmitters will go online first, with the analogs to be moved afterward, but I'm just guessing. KSHB is shooting for June 1 for their digital signal to be up.

As for programming, KMCI-36 will probably be all SD, or upconverted HD, similar to KSMO-47 and KCWE-31. They have a 9:00 pm newscast produced by KSHB, but don't really share any other programming (that I know of) with them.

Hopefully, when KSHB (analog) leaves the WDAF tower in midtown, WDAF-DT will install a new antenna up high on their tower and bump up power to something we can actually RECEIVE!

Brad

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post #6 of 8916 Old 03-07-2003, 01:43 PM
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Quote:


Comcast is just about ready to roll and has started a list of customers to receive their first shipment of HDTV set-top-boxes.

Just got off the phone with a Comcast sales rep and it was his understanding that they have all the head-end equipment in place, but were waiting on STBs. I asked about putting my name on the waiting list, but he said they weren't doing that yet. He didn't have any pricing or packaging information.

--Gary
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post #7 of 8916 Old 03-07-2003, 06:37 PM
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Gary, you are right on the list for Comcast STB's. Comcast called my parents today. (my parents live in Blue Springs and I had called early this week on Comcast HDTV and was told about a waiting list for HDTV STB's. The CSR wrote down my parents name and said Comcast would call back when the HDTV STB's were in stock) The CSR spoke with my mother today and explained they are not going to have an HDTV STB's waiting list and to watch for a announcement when the HDTV STB'S are in stock. Thanks for the correction.
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post #8 of 8916 Old 03-08-2003, 08:29 AM
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I spoke with a CSR from Everest yesterday and they indicated that they would be rolling out the HD set-top-boxes at the beginning of June. Although a little later than anticipated it's good to see Everest finally getting in the game, especially since it's been about a year that Time Warner rolled out their HD-STBs.

This is good news for the Kansas City area. The cable companies are doing their part to get HDTV going in this area. Hopefully they will join in the fight against stations like KCTV with their SD-only mentality.

When speaking with the representative from Everest he was not sure of the HD channels that will be available. Has anyone heard from Time Warner or Comcast if they will offer ESPN-HD, HD-Discovery, HDNET, or any other non-OTA broadcasts anytime soon? Time Warner seems to be the HD cable pioneer around here but I haven't heard a plan from them on these other HD channels.
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post #9 of 8916 Old 03-08-2003, 09:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:


Originally posted by macman
I spoke with a CSR from Everest yesterday and they indicated that they would be rolling out the HD set-top-boxes at the beginning of June. Although a little later than anticipated it's good to see Everest finally getting in the game, especially since it's been about a year that Time Warner rolled out their HD-STBs.

That's great news! An article in the paper about Everest not having enough capital to continue expanding their service area as agressively as they had been has been widely misinterpeted as "they are going out of business". I switched my brother to Everest from Time-Warner/Roadrunner and have been very impressed with their system and speed. I was dreading going back to Time-Warner just to get the HD channels.
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post #10 of 8916 Old 03-08-2003, 10:45 PM
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Quote:


I was dreading going back to Time-Warner just to get the HD channels.

I feel the same way. It was tough giving up the HD cable service from TW but their analog signal in my area was terrible. Seeing the clear analog channels after switching to Everest was a whole new TV watching experience. Also, TW has a serious congestion problem with their internet nodes. Throw in the fact that I said goodbye to SBC & MCI and am saving about 30% per month and it was a fairly easy decision to make the switch.

Everest has set a new standard in the communications industry with the bundled packages (internet, cable, phone, long distance) at about half to two-thirds the total cost. And the fact they laid new fiber/coax from scratch gives them a clear technological (bandwidth) advantage. It's good to finally have some competition with existing cable & phone providers.

Back on topic: I've been calling them about twice every month since October on their HDTV roll-out plans and always received different answers, but the consensus was always a spring/summer time frame. The guy I talked to didn't hesitate when I asked him about it and said it would be the first of June when the HD set-top-boxes would be available. For all previous calls there was never any mention about the HD STBs, only about the HD service in general. Anyway, I'll probably call again next week to confirm this but it does sound promising.
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post #11 of 8916 Old 03-09-2003, 10:31 AM
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Great news about Everest indeed! If they get all fo the HD chans up that TW does than the decision to switch will be an easy one.
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post #12 of 8916 Old 03-09-2003, 06:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Everest appears to have a clue about technology (as opposed to Time-Warner which continues to annoy me with their stealth war on VPNs). I'm curious if Everest would have someone in the public relations department who could post here. They are going to need beta testers for their HD service, and AVS Forum is the best source of those.
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post #13 of 8916 Old 03-09-2003, 06:55 PM
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I work fairly close to the Everest service center in Lenexa, which I believe is where they house their cable equipment. I'll try and stop by this week during lunch and poke around. I've been meaning to stop by anyway ever since they rolled out their recording set-top-boxes. First priority is to get confirmation about the June HD roll-out date from someone other than customer service. If they are go for June, I'll try and get some contacts in the PR and tech department and see if we can get them involved with this board regarding beta testing.
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post #14 of 8916 Old 03-09-2003, 07:15 PM
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Has anyone noticed a drop in signal strength on KCTV DT-24 OTA? My DT-24 signal strength has dropped from 95% to 52% While all the other stations have stayed the same. Thanks
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post #15 of 8916 Old 03-10-2003, 10:23 AM
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Quote:


Originally posted by jeffdbs
Has anyone noticed a drop in signal strength on KCTV DT-24 OTA? My DT-24 signal strength has dropped from 95% to 52% While all the other stations have stayed the same. Thanks

Yes, KCTV takes 5-10 seconds to lock on these days. My "strength" numbers are usually 28-52% (on Dish 6K). BTW, I usually watch KCTV with the SD (S-video) connection. Since it's 480i anyway, my TV (Hitachi) does a better job displaying it than it does with an upconverted 1080i image from the 6K. The 1080i picture has multiple "ghost" images to the right of the main image (most visible on vertical lines), and it drives me crazy. (As if thinking about KCTV's HD policy didn't do that anyway!)

Brad

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post #16 of 8916 Old 03-10-2003, 04:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:


Originally posted by Bradtothebone
The 1080i picture has multiple "ghost" images to the right of the main image (most visible on vertical lines), and it drives me crazy.

I've noticed the exact same problem on a friend's Mitsubishi setup. Hard to believe any self-respecting broadcast engineer would allow a situation like that to continue.

But on the other hand, KMBC-DT's upconverted material is rife with chroma-crawl. I've spoken with them, and the engineer insists that the connection to the upconverter is SDI. But the only actual broadcast-quality HD monitor they have is actually at the transmitter.
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post #17 of 8916 Old 03-10-2003, 04:21 PM
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Yeah Chris, I know what you mean. In comparison, WIBW's upconverts look excellent in my opinion. Their 10 PM newscast looks awesome compared to KMBC.
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post #18 of 8916 Old 03-10-2003, 04:48 PM
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Bad news from Everest. I spoke with a gal in their Marketing department today regarding their HD roll-out and was told that it will be next year before they will provide HD services. I told her about the service rep that told me the first of June and she indicated that was their original plan.

We discussed the Time-Warner and Comcast HD availability and her response was HDTV isn't their highest priority at the moment. It seems their financial tightening might be the root cause for this decision. I can understand their situation but this definitely puts a dent in their competitiveness with Time-Warner/Comcast with those who have/will be purchasing HD ready sets.
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post #19 of 8916 Old 03-11-2003, 09:51 AM
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hdtimmy,

Fellow Olathean here! Send me a PM with your email, I'd like to discuss HD in Olathe with you before I make a purchase, please.

Alan
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post #20 of 8916 Old 03-12-2003, 10:04 AM
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I talked to an engineer at KCTV and I was told they plan to have the equipment in place in approximately 6 months to pass on the HD signal from the network. Hopefully in time for the Chiefs games.
In the meantime we will only be able to view KMBC-DT and KCPT-HD in high def since no one can pickup the WDAF-DT signal.
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post #21 of 8916 Old 03-12-2003, 12:18 PM
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Quote:


I talked to an engineer at KCTV and I was told they plan to have the equipment in place in approximately 6 months to pass on the HD signal from the network. Hopefully in time for the Chiefs games.
In the meantime we will only be able to view KMBC-DT and KCPT-HD in high def since no one can pickup the WDAF-DT signal.

What?? When did this happen?? Chris just spoke with Dan Somes, Chief Engineer at KCTV at the end of February and they were still talking about budgets and multi-casting SD. Is this who you spoke with?

This is good news if true. I wonder if the Phoenix and Nashville Meredith persuasion finally carried over to KCTV.
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post #22 of 8916 Old 03-12-2003, 01:00 PM
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Wasn't the same guy. Unfortunately, I didn't write down the name but it was someone else. I was told that it was not in the budget for now but they hoped they would be able to broadcast in HD within 6 months.

Regarding WDAF-DT, can anyone in the KC area receive it?

And is the timeline for KSHB's digital programming (June) confirmed?
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post #23 of 8916 Old 03-12-2003, 03:55 PM
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i can get WDAF, and at 480p - it's not bad. But i'm pretty close in (119th & Switzer) at the top of a hill in my sub....but i don't know of anyone else who can receive it at this point.

Kendal
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post #24 of 8916 Old 03-12-2003, 03:59 PM
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I "receive" Fox through Time Warner Cable (comes in 100% ). It certainly looks a lot worse than HD, but it is nice to be able to watch one of my favorite shows (24) in 16:9... You could really tell a big difference in the football broadcasts during the playoffs between Fox and ABC. Wish I could have seen CBS.
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post #25 of 8916 Old 03-12-2003, 04:41 PM - Thread Starter
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I've set two antennas up that are currently receiving WDAF-DT. One is on top of a 5 story building in downtown KC, with direct line of site to WDAF's backup antenna tower. The other is in Rosedale.

As far as KCTV's excuses, I know what I heard. The reception equipment was supplied by CBS. It was available in either HD or SD. KCTV specifically asked for an SD rack. The "it costs too much to add HD programming" line is utter nonsense. KMBC, KCTV's direct competitor, is passing ABC's HD signal and upconverting their local programming, as they should. But they are also digitally broadcasting KCWE-DT/UPN and are upconverting all that programming to HD, even though UPN produces no HD material.

If an HD encoder and whatever unspecified "additional staffing" costs are so great, why would KCWE possibly gain by incurring this expense? Because the truth is, the additional costs are negligable. Edward King and his staff at KMBC/KCWE are handling 4 transmitters (two analog, two digital) with no additional staff. There is no additional sales staff to sell programming for the digital channels.

KCTV is, to put it bluntly, full of it and are trying to blow smoke up our collective butts.

I suspect what Meredith and KCTV are waiting for is an 1080i time compresser.
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post #26 of 8916 Old 03-12-2003, 08:33 PM
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Yes it is a race to see which local network will be the first broadcast station in Kansas City to show the Chiefs in HDTV. I believe the first ABC Monday night football preseason game is the Chiefs. The bragging rights will last for 10 years for which ever station broadcast the Chiefs locally in HDTV first. I just don't see KCTV 5 standing by and letting KMBC ABC HDTV football getting all the glory this fall. With ESPN-HD (ABC) about to launch along with ABC Monday night football, HDTV will be the buzz word in local KC sports bars, television retailers and home football television fans. Market share is the Holy Grail with advertisers especially loyal football fans with HDTV's.
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post #27 of 8916 Old 03-13-2003, 09:38 AM
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Got this off of the Kansas City Chiefs website:

"FEB 11 (afternoon)--The National Football League officially announced the Chiefs 2003 preseason opponents on Tuesday. Kansas City will kick off its 2003 preseason schedule against Green Bay in Canton, Ohio at the Hall of Fame game on Monday, August 4th (7:00 PM CT) at Pro Football Hall of Fame Field at Fawcett Stadium. The contest will be televised nationally by ABC's Monday Night Football crew and will mark the club's third appearance in the Hall of Fame Game."

Since ABC is broadcasting all of the Monday Night Football games this season in high def this will be fantastic to watch on the best local HD station, KMBC-DT.
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post #28 of 8916 Old 03-14-2003, 06:45 AM
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I guess I should have done a little more homework.

So, help me out here, are there any stations in the KC area broadcasting the networks HD signal?

Thanks

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post #29 of 8916 Old 03-14-2003, 07:47 AM
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See Chris Williams post on the previous page.

At this time only KMBC-DT is passing the networks HD signal in 720p. Occasionally KCPT-DT will pass the PBS HD signal in 1080i.
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post #30 of 8916 Old 03-18-2003, 06:30 PM
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The Kansas City Star is going to run an article on HDTV in Kansas City in Wednesday FYI section. http://www.kansascity.com/mld/kansascity/
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