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Portland, ME - HDTV

post #1 of 4993
Thread Starter 
With all 3 network affiliates (WCSH, WGME and WMTW) planning to come online in the next couple of months, I thought it would be good to start a thread about their progress. Although, I won't be in my summer home in Kennebunkport until next month, it would be great to know if other forum members are from this area. The SE VA DTV thread had been successful due to the fact that the engineers for the affiliates here have been participating. It would be great to get some participation from the Portland station engineers too. Any interest in this thread?
post #2 of 4993
Does anybody actually live in Maine?
post #3 of 4993
Thread Starter 
From the lack of response to this post, (and because I haven't been there for 5 months now), I'm not so sure anymore.
post #4 of 4993
Ain't no one up here but us chickens!

With all 3 network affiliates (WCSH, WGME and WMTW) planning to come online in the next couple of months

Is this true? Any info on this would be appreciated.
post #5 of 4993
When I lived for a year in Portland, I couldn't understand why the whole country doesn't pack up and move to Maine. It's an incredibly beautiful state. Glad to know it will be joining the HDTV world (eventually).
post #6 of 4993
Maine is Beautiful, but it has no JOBS, hence the reason I am in Virginia, but when I get my Millions, I am moving back to Maine!
post #7 of 4993
I am patiently waiting for WCSH, WGME and WMTW to start broadcasting High Definition. I live in Steep Falls, Maine and I am looking forward to watching some HD programming!
post #8 of 4993
Thread Starter 
I'll be in K'port by the end of the month. My latest news (about 2 months old now), was that WGME and WMTW were about ready (by May 1st) and WCSH was trailing and wouldn't start until summer. WCSH and I think WGME have filed for 6 month extensions, but may not need the whole time. I'll try emailing the engineers again and see what response I get. Any other Mainiacs around?
post #9 of 4993
Here! We'll sort of. Actually outside Philly just getting my HD together. But! I grew up in Maine (around Portland) and have a lot of friends back home eyeing my new fangled things. So, in addition to looking out for info relating to whenever Comcast and CBS might patch things up here in Philly, I'm keeping an eye on the happening's back home. Let me know what you find!
Of course I think this thread may need to move to the new "local" forum.
post #10 of 4993
Thread Starter 
Just got this back from WMTW:

"Dear Mr. Francis,

WMTW TV plans to have its DTV broadcast on the air in mid June
or early July. We are currently installing the digital transmitter and
plan to have the digital antenna (Channel 46) up in late May or early
June. We plan to initially transmit in standard definition to be followed
later by full high definition (720 progressive).

Thank you for inquiring about WMTW DT - we look forward to serving

Jack Conner
Director of Engineering
WMTW Broadcast Group, LLC"

Not good. HD transmissions are even later.
post #11 of 4993
Thread Starter 
Further update:

Just talked with Craig Clarke - WGME chief engineer. He hopes to begin testing on system next week with evening broadcasts starting by May 1. He will be using a temp antenna aimed at Portland until about mid-June when his full antenna goes on-line.
post #12 of 4993
I just moved to Maine in October, my wife made me ;-).
Carried my Mits 55805, DISH 6000, Lex DC-1 ... with me.
In particular I am in Hermon, just outside of Bangor. Is that close enough for you southerners ? Relative to Aroostook County it is quite south. I can receive Augusta's WCBB-DT PBS with a quick and dirty RS ant installed on an 8 ft ladder in the back yard before winter set in. Signal strength ~75. Preparing for a full clean install here soon. According to the marketing folks at the local CBS affiliate WABI channel 5 they have a tower ready and sb broadcastiong by the end of May. progress !
post #13 of 4993
I am receiving WGME digital channel 13.1 tonight in Steep Falls, Maine with a signal strength of 75 using a Sony HD-100 receiver and a Channel Master 4248 UHF antenna hooked up to a Channel Master Spartan 3 mast mounted amplifier. It appears to be a standard definition rebroadcast of analog channel 13. Well done WGME! I will be watching for CBS HDTV!
post #14 of 4993
Thread Starter 
Just got my signal of WGME in Kennebunkport. It's around 60 with a CM 80" UHF antenna in my attic and a Zenith DTV1080 receiver. Hopefully, WMTW will follow along soon.
post #15 of 4993
my father has a place by you, so im interested in what ill be able to watch when i come visit.
post #16 of 4993
Hello, like I posted on the past thread, yesterday I asked the woman at time warner if they had any news on HD for greater Portland. I have asked this numerous times in the past, only to be given a blank stare and told that they already had it, digital..... I then had to explain the differences to them and explain that time warner had HD in many other markets already. This time, however, the woman said they had received numerous emails about this, explaining it to them. She stated that it was her understanding that they would have High def up and running very soon. I pushed her on this a bit, and she said within 2 months she thought. Now Maine has lots of different cable companies, some I think are rather slow, Portland's time warner has been very progressive, we have had Road runner for 5 years I think, so I wouldn't be at all surprised, and very pleased, to see it soon. Here's hoping!!!!!
post #17 of 4993
WGME raised the power of their transmission yesterday, now my signal strength meter is pegged at 100. I sent an e-mail to Craig Clark - WGME's Chief Engineer telling him that I was receiving the broadcast and I also asked him if he could give a time frame for when they would be broadcasting in High Def, this is his response:

Thanks for the email. We are on low power so this is nice to see. We will up the power this week and again in late June.

The HD encoders are on back order so I have no time frame for you. But I will keep working on it. Craig Clark
post #18 of 4993
Live in Exeter,NH half way between Boston and Portland. Receive most of the Boston stations 5/5 but could not receive 13-1 last night on Zenith 1080. Antenna was trurned directly to where I normally receive channel 13 analog.Any suggestions. Bill
post #19 of 4993
Bill, do you have a mast mounted amplifier hooked to your antenna? If not, that may help. I think that Radio Shack has them for $40. Also make sure that you have your receiver set to UHF channel 38 when you search for the signal, it should remap to channel 13.1

post #20 of 4993
Thread Starter 
I was looking forward to CSI last night in HD. I had no idea WGME was lacking the HD equipment. Talked with Craig Clarke today. It's a money issue not a backorder issue. He needs $50K for an HD encoder. I just emailed their general manager, Alan Cartwright requesting that he budget the funds. I suggest that any in the area that are interested in HD do the same.
post #21 of 4993
Maine HD Viewer: Thanks for the help. Have Blake top of the line UHF antenna with 6 dB more gain than 4228 plus preamp. Get boston stations without problem. Matter of fact, the Zenith will accept channel 38 analog from Boston when it is pointed away. But directly on Portland, still won't recognize 38 digital. Will try again tonight. Thanks. Bill
post #22 of 4993
Tried again last night but failed to pick up signal in Exeter NH, of 13(38-1).
Are they at full strength? I don't understand this as I get 6,8, and 13 analog with no problem, and little snow.
post #23 of 4993
Thread Starter 
After getting discouraged that WGME and WMTW won't be high def for some time, I decided to point my attic antenna in the opposite direction last night. From Kennbunkport, I suddenly had all 5 networks from Boston, with ABC, CBS and PBS all sending HD programming. Fox and NBC were coming in great, too. I am 93 miles from the transmitters.
post #24 of 4993
Thread Starter 
I may have gotten excited too soon. After 2 days & nights of great reception, the last day or so has been so poor, I can't get a locked signal on any Boston station. Oh, well. I thought I was in HD heaven.
post #25 of 4993
Time Warner out of Portland started carrying HDTV today--Showtime and HBO. Supposedly the cable boxes (Scientific Atlanta 3100HD) will available soon and possibly as soon as tomorrow! If you check the Time Warner Cable of Maine web site and check channels available on digital cable, it now lists the 4 HD channels (two hbo, two showtime channels) in the 500's.

Also, according to the woman I spoke to today, they intend to carry some PBS in HD, and she seemed to think they would add local HDTV broadcasts when they came on line, which in the case of Channel 13 (CBS) might be as soon as a month or so.

Finally something for Maine!
post #26 of 4993
WOOHOOO!!!! I can't wait, looks like I'll be watching some HBO this weekend, hopefully!!!!! Come on time warner lets get CBS up and running quick tooo!!!!
post #27 of 4993
Thread Starter 
Heard from Craig Clark at WGME. They now have the HD equipment and tried last night with "CSI". The SD channel came through fine (38-1) but the HD channel (38-2) had a carrier signal but no picture or sound. Hopefully, they will have it worked out soon.
post #28 of 4993
Time warner has the HD boxes in stock now!!! I picked one up this morning and set it up at lunch. It seems to be working fine, but I'm not sure how to tell what channels are broadcasting HD signals. I guess I'll have to look around tonight.
post #29 of 4993
Just picked mine up, but I have to wait for a transcoder before I can really use it with my FP. Just a few days, I hope!
post #30 of 4993
Just logged in channel 6-1 in Exeter, NH at better signal strength than the Boston stations. Still can't get 13-1. Is the transmitter on the same antenna or in a different direction from 6. Are there any other digital stationS BROADCASTING FROM Maine?
This is great as NBC and Fox out of Boston are my two weakest stations so at least now I can watch NBC from your neck of the woods.
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