Central Pennsylvania Digital TV Status (February 11, 2009)
This covers State College, Altoona, Johnstown, and other communities in DMA #98 with a focus on State College.Contributors:
tinyiota, PA_MainyYak, winkydink, golferadamWhere to find HD:
Comcast in State College and surrounding areas offers 28 (or more) HD channels. As of mid February 2009 all broadcast networks are available.
D&E offers an HD package as well including all locals.
Atlantic Broadband offers around 20 channels including all five networks.
(this section is poor at the moment as the nice write up was lost in AVS' db crash... it will be updated with something better soon)
Courtesy of tinyiota
DirecTV delivers our market's local channels WPSU, WJAC, WTAJ, WWCP and WATM, along with the Pittsburgh CW affiliate WPCW. These channels are available either from the 72.5 Ku band orbital location, which requires a 2nd "small" dish pointed almost due south, or from their Ka band satellites, which requires both an MP4 capable receiver and a newer Ka band dish. It is expected that at some point, the locals on the 72.5 satellite will be phased out and a Ka band dish and receiver will be required for locals in our market.
There is presently no information on when(if) WPSU or WPCW will be available in HD, nor is there any information available on if or when WHVL might be carried.Commentary:
As of February 23, 2007, all major networks are passing HD over the air in our market, however, not all parts of the market can receive all networks.
Customers of Atlantic Broadband in Altoona and Johnstown can receive all major networks in HD via cable.
Comcast customers in State College and surrounding areas are missing CBS in HD at this time as Comcast has not yet come to agreement with Nexstar for retransmission of WTAJ's high definition service and therefore only provides PBS, NBC, FOX, and ABC in HD. (WTAJ is rumored to come to Comcast on 1/26/09)
D&E Communications in State College offers WJAC, WATM , WPSU and WTAJ in HD and a full HD package.Status:WPSU-DT (Analog 3, Digital 15) PBS - Clearfield, PA (Post-transition: 15)
Subchannels: 3.1 PBS-HD, 3.2 WPSU-TV, 3.3 WPSU "Create"
FCC Service Contours: Analog (3) Digital (15)
WPSU, the PBS affiliate owned and operated by the Pennsylvania State University is arguably doing more with DTV than many other stations in the country. WPSU-DT is testing a Single Frequency Network wherein the main transmitter in Clearfield is supplemented by on-channel boosters, which are nearly synchronized with the main transmitter, in State College, Altoona, and Johnstown. This ensures that WPSU-DT can/will be received with even the simplest antenna configuration in each of the major communities of our market. Current WPSX-DT is operating its main transmitter at 537 kW and its on-channel booster in State College at 50 kW, sufficient to provide a city-grade signal in and around State College. WPSU-DT is currently passing the PBS HD Channel. I suggest using a directional antenna as it is possible in areas outside the intended center of the booster's directional beam to receive both signals and have what appears to be a bad multipath problem. For those looking, the on-channel booster is on Pine Grove Mountain.
Plans for deployment of on-channel boosters to Altoona and Johnstown are on hold at this time.WJAC-DT (Analog 6, Digital 34) NBC - Johnstown, PA (Post-transition: 34)
Subchannels: 6.1 NBC-HD, 6.2 NBC Weather Plus, 6.3 WJAC-TV
State College Translator: Analog 7, Digital 42
FCC Service Contours: Analog (6) Digital (34) Analog Translator (7) Digital Translator (42)
WJAC-DT was first on the air in the market with their digital signal and they passed HD from network immediately. WJAC-DT is transmitting at 1 MW from Laurel Mountain, approximately 65 miles from downtown State College. WJAC also passes DD5.1 from network.
WJAC-DT can be received in State College, however many people have had trouble depending on their exact location. WJAC's channel 42 digital translator is online now and provides a great signal in the area.WATM-DT (Former Analog 23, Digital 24) ABC - Altoona, PA
Subchannels: 23.1 ABC-HD, 23.2 WATM-TV, 23.3 WWCP-TV
FCC Service Contours: Analog (23)
(Off air as of 2/17/2009) Digital (24)
WATM-DT is ABC in HD and over the air. The major area cablecos all carry WATM in HD as well. This channel also includes a FOX SD subchannel.WWCP-DT (Former Analog 8, Digital 8) FOX - Johnstown, PA
State College Translator: Analog 59, Proposed Digital 17
Subchannels: 8.1 FOX-HD, 8.2 WATM-TV
Translators and FCC Service Contours: Analog (8)
(Off air as of 2/17/2009)Digital (8) State College Analog (59) State College Digital (17)
WWCP-DT began passing FOX in HD on or around 2/23/07. As this is fed from the FOX splicer it is expected that the audio stream is DD 5.1 during network programming.WTAJ-DT (Analog 10, Digital 32) CBS - Altoona, PA (Post-transition: 32)
Subchannels: 10.1 CBS-HD
FCC Service Contours: Analog (10) Digital (32)
WTAJ began passing HD and DD5.1 OTA on January 26, 2007. They currently have no plans for subchannels so it looks like we'll see full 19+ Mbps 1080i. While it took a long time to come it appears to be worth it! The picture is spectacular, however, there have been some problems with the DD audio mix.WHVL (Analog 29, Digital 27) MyNetworkTV - State College, PA (Post-transition: 27)
FCC Service Contours: Analog (29) Digital (27)
WHVL was a long neglected LP broadcasting from Rattlesnake Mountain to the north of State College. In August of 2007 this station was relaunched as the market's MyNetworkTV affiliate. A poster in this thread, 75ohms, has kept us up to date with information regarding WHVL... Rumor is that as of mid February 2009 that WHVL is broadcasting a test signal including its intended final configuration of 29-1 720p MyNTV, 29-2 480i America One.WKBS-DT (Analog 47, Digital 46) Cornerstone - Altoona, PA (Post-transition: 46)
Subchannels: 47.1 WKBS-DT
FCC Service Contours: Analog (47) Digital (46) STA
As I am generally uninterested in television religion I don't know anything more than the FCC knows about this station. They are currently transmitting with 6.1 kW and can be received in State College using an 8-bay or high gain yagi. Their CP is for 50 kW.WNEP (Translators in State College on 36, 39) ABC - Wilkes-Barre, PA
FCC Service Contours: Analog (36) Analog (39)
Digital Contours Not Yet Available
WNEP has had translators in State College for as long as I can remember. Before WATM become our ABC affiliate in the 80's, WNEP provided ABC service to the State College area (together with WHTM of Harrisburg).
WNEP has translators all over eastern Pennsylvania from Allentown northward and westward to State College.
On March 31, 2006, the FCC received flash-cut applications for both the channel 36 and 39 translators. This would provide State College with two (three) sources of ABC in HD.Miscellaneous
W13BY, what appears to be a translator for WKBS or the same network WKBS is affiliated with, also has applied for a low-power DTV license for channel 12.
FCC Service Contours: W13BY Proposed LD 12
Reception of anything from Harrisburg is unlikely as stations are either assigned the same freqeuncy as a station in DMA 98 or a translator in the State College area or are more than 80 miles away. The only station on a channel not used in the State College area is WHP-DT on channel 4, at about 59 miles, but WPSU's analog on channel 3 seems to throw off quite a bit of adjacent channel interference and makes it impossible to receive.Just how local are our "local" stations
I've added this section based on a post by pa_maniyyak that details the ownership of our local broadcast stations.WJAC
is owned by Cox Enterprises, Inc, one of the major players in media, and based in Atlanta. The NBC affiliate is one of 15 Cox TV stations in medium and large markets. The company also owns radio stations, newspapers, a huge cable company, and other media interests.WTAJ
has just recently been purchased by Nexstar Broadcasting, based in the Dallas area, making our local CBS affiliate part of a chain of 32 small and medium market owned stations (along with another 17 stations under operating agreements.)WWCP
FOX8 is owned by Peak Media of Pennsylvania, which in turn, is owned by a holding company based in Tampa that owns ten other small market TV stations and has minority interest in several others.WATM
ABC23 is operated by FOX8, but is owned by Palm Television, L.P., which is controlled by CBIZ Business Solutions of St. Louis, Inc.WKBS
is the religious station in Altoona, operated by Cornerstone Television, Inc, based in a rather well equipped facility near Monroeville, PA, distributing programming to religious stations around the world. While that may be construed as “local”, it is also a rather large enterprise. The company also operates WPCB-TV in Greensburg as well as several low power translator stations scatted across western Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Harrisburg, PA. No HD for them.WPSU
is owned and operated by the Pennsylvania State University.
(added by slykens 11/24/2007)WHVL
is owned by Channel Communications out of Lewistown