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Raleigh, NC - HDTV - Page 493

post #14761 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by HDMe2 View Post

IF the original question wasn't about asking if there was (or should be) a requirement for the channels to be grouped a certain way or on specific non-changing channels... then I don't know what the question about involving the FCC was meant to be.

I'm sure I'm confused... but I know there was more to the question than just asking if the channels were available and where they might be found.

No, there wasn't. The original question was asking about a missing local HD channel(s) was, and where it might be found. There was also a comment about the placement of the local HD channels. Then a comment about the FCC getting involved, which was in reference to a cableco not fulfilling it's obligation to provide local HD channels in clear QAM, not about the specific channel locations. I understand how you may have thought the FCC comment was referring to both the missing channel question and channel placement, but that was not the case.

In a follow up comment the OP said "It is logical then that the cable company should also be required to tell customers what the QAM channel numbers are so that they do not have to rent or buy a set-top box." Logical maybe, but not required. You are correct about this. As far as what the average cableco usually does, from first hand experience, once you get the right person they are usually glad to help a paying subscriber.
post #14762 of 15283
I think a lot of this depends on how much trouble the cable company is willing to go through to train its people, how willing they are to commit to fixed frequency vs SDV, and how "evil" they are. Below some threshold, the smaller the company, the less "evil" it seems to be. Some tiny local cable companies offer everything in clear QAM. See for example, http://www.imon.net/Content/Cable-TV...TV-FAQ.aspx#78

If I could get those channels via clear QAM & not mess with cable boxes or cable cards, I might actually subscribe to cable. Too bad I don't live in the middle of Iowa..

Drew
post #14763 of 15283
That makes more sense then...
post #14764 of 15283
The comment about congress and the FCC was really just a tongue-in-cheek remark. The FCC would certainly not get involved in minutiae like QAM channel numbers.

I guess in the back of my mind I was harboring some resentment that the FCC may well go along with the proposal to let cable companies scramble all of the local digital channels once the cable system drops its analog service.

The bottom line is this: Either learn to love a set-top box or else learn to love an antenna and go completely OTA. I don't ever see the cable companies and TV manufacturers embracing cable cards. There is too much money to be made by selling video-on-demand services via set-top boxes.
post #14765 of 15283
I'm about ready to get my cablecard service going. I've seen the install process vary quite a bit on various online forums...anyone have cablecard service started recently for TWC Raleigh and is there anything I should say over the phone ahead of time so I don't waste a day for someone to show up and then not have what is needed?

Cheers,
NitDawg
post #14766 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by nitdawg View Post

I'm about ready to get my cablecard service going. I've seen the install process vary quite a bit on various online forums...anyone have cablecard service started recently for TWC Raleigh and is there anything I should say over the phone ahead of time so I don't waste a day for someone to show up and then not have what is needed?

Cheers,
NitDawg

You know you can do a self install, right? I did 2 last week on my Tivos. All I had to do was call a toll-free number and read off some numbers from various screens. If it is just a standard CC install, it should be even simpler. Just go to your closest TWC office and ask for the cable card(s).

-Ted
post #14767 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by ncted View Post

You know you can do a self install, right? I did 2 last week on my Tivos. All I had to do was call a toll-free number and read off some numbers from various screens. If it is just a standard CC install, it should be even simpler. Just go to your closest TWC office and ask for the cable card(s).

-Ted

Jackpot. Sounds like the way to go. Thanks Ted.
post #14768 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by ncted View Post

You know you can do a self install, right? I did 2 last week on my Tivos. All I had to do was call a toll-free number and read off some numbers from various screens. If it is just a standard CC install, it should be even simpler. Just go to your closest TWC office and ask for the cable card(s).

Was that with or without the tuning adapter?

The cards have performed better since the Cisco firmware update but the TA is still flaky. I haven't done an install recently but the TA was always a source of problems during an install.
post #14769 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by VisionOn View Post


Was that with or without the tuning adapter?

The cards have performed better since the Cisco firmware update but the TA is still flaky. I haven't done an install recently but the TA was always a source of problems during an install.

That included tuning adapters. No problems. It just took a little while for everything to be recognized, but the tech on the phone said that was normal.
post #14770 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by HDMe2 View Post

...

If you subscribe to even the most basic package of digital cable, they give you a converter box don't they?

So who does that leave to be connecting a cable to their TV without a converter box to try and decode the clear QAM channels?
...

I have a digital set top box (Tivo), but I also split the signal and have a direct wall-to-TV connection as well. I use it as a third tuner, handy for those rare situations when there are three shows I'd like to see at the same time, as Tivo can handle only two. So, clear QAM channels have some value to me, and I am a paying digital cable customer.
post #14771 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by PedjaR View Post

I have a digital set top box (Tivo), but I also split the signal and have a direct wall-to-TV connection as well. I use it as a third tuner, handy for those rare situations when there are three shows I'd like to see at the same time, as Tivo can handle only two. So, clear QAM channels have some value to me, and I am a paying digital cable customer.

Similar situation here. Direct to a Moxi, split to the television and one to HDHomerun for backup recording.
post #14772 of 15283
We replaced our old 8000HD (don't recall the exact model but the one that was C based and rebooted often) with a 8240HDC.

Fewer problems with rebooting the box is slower than a snail. Any suggestions on a better box to replace it with? Now that TV season is over, I want to take the take and replace it again as we can't stand the multi-second delays when pressing a key in the RC. We even deleted a wrong show once because of it.

Francisco
post #14773 of 15283
Do most people who use a DVR to record OTA signals use one that has a monthly subscription fee for a programming guide, or do they just manually program them in the way that people used to program recording times on a VCR?
post #14774 of 15283
I would say by and large the Joe Sixpack crowd is using a DVR for which they are paying a programming provider for (i.e cable or DBS). A much smaller number are using DVRs that can do OTA , (Tivo or Dish DVR PAL / CM7400 etc). and it's mostly computer geeks using their PCs to record programming.
post #14775 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

Do most people who use a DVR to record OTA signals use one that has a monthly subscription fee for a programming guide, or do they just manually program them in the way that people used to program recording times on a VCR?

I don't know about "most", but I suspect it is neither, i.e. the programming guide does not require a monthly subscription.

Along the lines of what Scooper said, the intersection of DVR use and OTA signals that are not an adjunct to a pay TV service is probably pretty small overall, but largely consists of people using their computers as DVRs.

And among the set of people using computers as DVRs, I would guess that most are using software that includes programming guide data "for free", e.g. Windows Media Center, BeyondTV SageTV, etc. There is probably a large contingent of folks using something like MythTV on Linux and they either pay for guide data from a service like schedulesdirect.org or use a screen scraper to grab guide data from free online guide web sites (though I'm not sure of the point of the latter given how inexpensive schedulesdirect is).
post #14776 of 15283
The ePVision PHD-VRX looks promising for a DVR.
See http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1262996
I use a Magnavox 513 - see http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=940657
post #14777 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooper View Post

I would say by and large the Joe Sixpack crowd is using a DVR for which they are paying a programming provider for (i.e cable or DBS). A much smaller number are using DVRs that can do OTA , (Tivo or Dish DVR PAL / CM7400 etc). and it's mostly computer geeks using their PCs to record programming.

I think you're right. The cable and satellite companies seem to dominate the market for DVRs. What I was talking about is a DVR that works without a computer and without having a cable company or satellite company in the picture (pun intended).

I guess the reason some people want to use a computer for recording is that they also want to use the same computer to stream internet content to the TV set. That sounds interesting, but I'm not sure that there will be much "free" content on the internet for much longer.

I was more interested in just using a DVR with an ATSC tuner to do time shifting of shows that are broadcast OTA. Is Tivo the main player in that market niche now?
post #14778 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

I was more interested in just using a DVR with an ATSC tuner to do time shifting of shows that are broadcast OTA. Is Tivo the main player in that market niche now?


My first HTPC in 2005 was setup to do precisely what you want -- record broadcast HD without monthly fees. Although it costs a bit up front, over time, it is still the most cost effective option compared to the most popular OTA capable DVR (Tivo) which has either a $15-$20 monthly fee or some large $500 lifetime fee.

A PVR gives you more features than most DVRs (commercial skipping, BD playback, streaming web content, the ability to easily add storage, the ability to transcode recordings for mobile devices or archival). The big cost used to be noise and power consumption, but with the recent chips from Intel and AMD, the power consumption of any decent HTPC build is going to rival that of a cable box. Plus you can put an HTPC to sleep and consume < 2W when you're not using it ... my inlaws' cable box pulls 40W at the wall if it is "on" or "off."

Drew
post #14779 of 15283
I don't mind watching commercials. After all, that's what pays the bills for the broadcast TV stations. Cable TV originally promised to be commercial free, but that was a long time ago. TV and the internet can't figure out how to seamlessly merge because nobody has figured out how much of the cost of providing programming should come from advertising revenue and how much should come from subscriber fees.
post #14780 of 15283
There are several threads in AVS Forums about PVRs. One such thread is http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1390236
It has links to other similar threads on the first page.
post #14781 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by dundakitty View Post

There are several threads in AVS Forums about PVRs. One such thread is http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1390236
It has links to other similar threads on the first page.

Thanks for the link to the other forum. Sometimes topics fit several forums. I was interested in how well DVRs work for recording local HD broadcasts OTA.
I think that link deals with recording to discs rather than to a hard drive, and it sounds like there is not much demand for a machine that records to disc.

The consumer electronics industry needs to reduce the number of competing technologies and go easy on all the acronyms. PVR, DVR, DVDR, ...
post #14782 of 15283
Does anyone know why a station would choose to air the same programming in HD on one subchannel and in SD on another? WTVD does that with the Live Well Network. 11.2 is HD and 11.3 is SD. Why not put weather maps on 11.3?

WTVD should be applauded for having new programming on 11.2, though. The only other subchannel that runs new programming is when 50.2 airs Durham Bulls games.
post #14783 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

Does anyone know why a station would choose to air the same programming in HD on one subchannel and in SD on another? WTVD does that with the Live Well Network. 11.2 is HD and 11.3 is SD. Why not put weather maps on 11.3?.

Isn't that way (in SD) for some cable systems to pick it up???
post #14784 of 15283
Do you mean that some cable systems would not be willing or able to devote enough bandwidth to carry two HD channels, 11.1 and 11.2, so they would decide to just carry 11.1 and 11.3? I think it would be pretty cheesy for a cable system to not carry the best quality signals for every subchannel that a local station broadcasts.
post #14785 of 15283
WTVD really needs to get rid of 11.3, it's a total waste of bandwidth and picture quality has been degraded for sure. I can pick up 2 other ABC stations and I can see the difference.
post #14786 of 15283
I usually don't see much difference between 720p and 1080i, so I am happy that 11.1 and 11.2 are both in 720p HD rather than having 11.1 be 1080i and 11.2 be SD.

I just don't see the point of having a SD version of LiveWell on 11.3.
Weather maps would be much more useful.

Maybe having LWN in both HD and SD is a policy of ABC, which owns WTVD and a handful of other stations across the country.
post #14787 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

I usually don't see much difference between 720p and 1080i, so I am happy that 11.1 and 11.2 are both in 720p HD rather than having 11.1 be 1080i and 11.2 be SD.

11.1 will always be in 720P because ABC is a 720P broadcaster. ESPN/ABC/Fox are 720P. NBC/CBS are 1080i.

the problem is that an OTA ATSC channel can handle ~19Mbits of data per second (iirc). that 19Mbits/sec gets divided among all the subchannels. Each additional subchannel reduces the available bandwidth for the main channel. Reduced bandwidth usually reduces quality. Allocating all that bandwidth to one 720P channel would provide much better picture quality. I think most people could easily tell the difference between a 19Mbit/sec video stream and what is being delivered now.

I hate subchannels. I would much rather have better quality main channel programming.
post #14788 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by veedon View Post

I usually don't see much difference between 720p and 1080i, so I am happy that 11.1 and 11.2 are both in 720p HD rather than having 11.1 be 1080i and 11.2 be SD.

11.1 would never be in 1080i. WTVD is an ABC affiliate, and the ABC network standardized on 720p.

No offense, but if you can't tell the difference between 1080i and 720p, perhaps you should not be commenting on the quality of WTVD's HD. When I lived in Cary, I found WTVD's quality to be so overcompressed that I put up a second antenna to get WXLV from Greensboro. Their bitrate was roughly twice the bitrate of WTDV, since they did not have the livewell channel. Anything involving any sort of motion (eg, college football, auto racing, etc) looked much sharper on WXLV. Dramas looked similar but just a bit sharper on WXLV, and network news / talking heads shows looked almost the same, since that type of low motion programming compresses better.

BTW, since moving to the Richmond area, it is like turning things upside down. Our ABC station is GREAT. But our NBC and CBS stations over-compress things, and there is no good alternative from a neighboring market.

I'm so picky that I really need to get a big ugly dish & start watching the networks' master feeds. 20Mb/s H.264 sounds so much better than the 12-15Mb/s MPEG2 we get via ATSC. But then there are the trees & the pesky HOA.

Drew
post #14789 of 15283
Quote:
Originally Posted by drewwho View Post

I'm so picky that I really need to get a big ugly dish & start watching the networks' master feeds. 20Mb/s H.264 sounds so much better than the 12-15Mb/s MPEG2 we get via ATSC. But then there are the trees & the pesky HOA.

At the very least you could get PBS and NBC with a Ku dish. I watch almost all my television on my FTA dish these days.

Everything else requires C-band, and Fox is encrypted although KRBK-HD from Missouri is in the clear.

- Trip
post #14790 of 15283
WCTI 12 New Bern has Live Well SD going also, plus THIS TV, and their picture is better than WTVD, it is even better than WWAY TV Wilmington for some reason, even though they only have one sub, RetroTV. I guess it could be WWAY has Dolby Digital sound?

Drill, you forgot PBS is 1080i and ION is 720p. I also notice CW 22 WLFL is showing 720p now. DIdn't they used to be 1080i???
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