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Mobile, AL / Panama City, FL - HDTV - Page 127

post #3781 of 4173
Quote:
Originally Posted by mobilelawyer View Post

I emailed Blab TV through their website, and asked about 33-4. If I understood the response correctly, the transmissions over 33-4 are used to relay content. I was urged to go to the Blab TV website to view their programming or to tune in channel 48, which would not be easy to do from Spanish Fort. I cannot imagine what the purpose of the relay would be, but that is what they said.

I infer from the response that 33-4 will still be used, but should not be looked at as a source of Blab-TV programming.

I tried again last night to tune the frequency, but no signal was present.

I checked 33.4 the other day, I was getting a good signal from my meter on my Insignia DTV box, but no programming. Basically, this seems like a way of sending a scrambled signal from Pensacola (using WHBR as a relay) to Wing, Alabama (site of WFBD) that WFBD can decode and broadcast on their channel. Instead of using satellite, fiber or microwave, this may be the most cost-effective solution.

In a way, it's like back in the 50s and 60s when stations that wanted to affiliate with a network that wouldn't provide them with a signal because of cost (or other reasons). Stations either had to devise their own way to intercept the network signal or actually re-broadcast a neighboring station with the same affiliation (for the sole purpose of airing network programming). WTVA in Tupelo, MS and WKPT in Johnson City, TN used this practice, but eventually got formal affiliations with their respective networks once satellite technology replaced microwave and telephone feeds.

Are there any other stations using the method that WFBD could be using?
post #3782 of 4173
I don't understand why someone would blank out the programming on WHBR when it would not be harmful to expose that programming to literally hundreds of thousands more people. Just because we live in Baldwin County doesn't mean we never cross the mythical state line. In fact, I rather enjoy shopping in Pensacola and having a station showing Pensacola programming would be welcome. Especially since it's not taking away some more valuable bandwidth for something else.
post #3783 of 4173
I just flipped over to WPMI and noticed that Dr. Oz and an NBC promo tagged with a "Local 15" logo are FINALLY airing in HD!
I wonder if WJTC has the upgrade as well and if both stations are now capable of running syndicated programming in HD.

Now WALA/WFNA needs to upgrade since they carry everything else that has been in HD for several years! The only thing I've seen from them outside of FOX programming is a Cellular South commercial a few weeks ago.

As for WKRG....I'm hoping Big Bang Theory this fall will be in HD. They've been airing an increasing number of HD commercials (and even promos, although the one with Devon looks like one of their interns cut it in iMovie).
I'd hate to think what would happen if Andy Griffith were upconverted!
post #3784 of 4173
Quote:
Originally Posted by esdx View Post
I just flipped over to WPMI and noticed that Dr. Oz and an NBC promo tagged with a "Local 15" logo are FINALLY airing in HD!
I wonder if WJTC has the upgrade as well and if both stations are now capable of running syndicated programming in HD.

Now WALA/WFNA needs to upgrade since they carry everything else that has been in HD for several years! The only thing I've seen from them outside of FOX programming is a Cellular South commercial a few weeks ago.

As for WKRG....I'm hoping Big Bang Theory this fall will be in HD. They've been airing an increasing number of HD commercials (and even promos, although the one with Devon looks like one of their interns cut it in iMovie).
I'd hate to think what would happen if Andy Griffith were upconverted!
I just noticed this this yesterday. When I turned to Stargate Universe and I got shocked WJTC going HD and WPMI better go the same thing like WJTC.

I have a question, do anyone wants to insist WPMI and WJTC to stop showing the old Hoffman Furniture commercial?? Because this commercial's too old and I grew up seeing this. Do you know how long do they keep showing this commercial...?
post #3785 of 4173
I didn't see any local high def content on WPMI when I watched the news this evening, but something was definitely different. The contrast was off and everything on the 6 pm news was very dark. And the audio on both the national and local programming was "off", very dull and AM-radio like. The high end was definitely missing.

I don't want to get my hopes up, but these sort of technical glitches are common as a station is upgrading equipment and preparing to go high def in the control room and all that. I witnessed it with Fox 6 and CBS 42 in B'ham, and WTVA in Tupelo a month or so before they all upgraded to HD news. Syndicated shows and commercials came first, then the news desk cameras next, then later field cameras. Maybe Local 15 news will be next in HD? It would be nice.
post #3786 of 4173
We can all hope! I am crossing my fingers.
post #3787 of 4173
WJTC was running House of Payne in HD yesterday, but the Simpsons was still in SD. On WPMI, Entertainment Tonight was still in SD yesterday, but Regis & Kelly was in HD this morning.

A lot of this may have to do with whether or not the syndicator is capable of sending HD content, and whether or not the station has the means of receiving, recording and playing back the content. I noticed on Judge Judy yesterday, that even though the show was in SD, there were HD commercials that aired (in the time that Judge Judy sells to sponsors...not the station)
post #3788 of 4173
Entertainment Tonight is in HD on WPMI.
Also, a "Derek Said it Would" promo aired in HD as well.
The audio problem is still prevalent in everything.
post #3789 of 4173
I think all the major syndicators can send in HD now, so I bet the issue is with WPMI replaying taped HD content. I hear refitting a station for HD playback of shows is pretty expensive, but I have forgotten the numbers quoted for WTVA (who at one time pleaded hardship to the FCC for not building any digital transmitter facility at all right up at the deadline, then went digital with syndicated HD and HD news all in a very short time frame.)

As I understand things, WALA Fox 10 is actually the most watched of the local news outlets. And it looks like they may be the last ones to HD. I watched their 9 pm newscast tonight. Anchors and reporters aside, their sets and graphics look straight out of 1993!
post #3790 of 4173
Good to see the site recovered from its problems the other day.

I contacted WPMI and they are indeed in the process of converting to HD in the on air chain for syndicated programming. No word on if/when they will be able to play back HD content, but they did say they want to go HD for news. It's just a matter of getting past the high cost.
post #3791 of 4173
http://metvnetwork.com/wherewatch.php?zipcode=36609

According to MeTV's website, they claim MeTV is coming to WKRG on or about 9/28/11....

So long RTV!

To add insult to injory, MeTV is picking up The Rifleman, Daniel Boone and Peter Gunn....which are currently airing on......RTV!

RTV is history unless there's a new content deal in the works. The loss of the NBC/Universal deal wiped out nearly all of their programming...
post #3792 of 4173
BLAB TV programming is back on channel 33-4. Here is a link to an article with more details.
post #3793 of 4173
Does anyone know when Comcast in Mobile is going to "pull the plug" on its analog signal, going all digital? Last fall, Comcast said the transition would be completed by spring.
post #3794 of 4173
Quote:
Originally Posted by davn1 View Post

Does anyone know when Comcast in Mobile is going to "pull the plug" on its analog signal, going all digital? Last fall, Comcast said the transition would be completed by spring.

I believe it's a phased process. Certain areas have already undergone the transition, while others remain with analog extended basic service. The infrastructure may be undergoing upgrades throughout the system which may be part of the delay.
post #3795 of 4173
Unscrambled again, and putting a clean, clear signal into Spanish Fort!
post #3796 of 4173
I just don't understand why they'd scramble. It's wall-to-wall advertisements. Are they scared someone in Mobile is going to drive over to Pensacola to buy an area rug?
post #3797 of 4173
And just like that, BLAB is down from 33.4...again!

Looking at signal contours on TVFool....WFBD does provide a solid signal for most of Santa Rosa and Okaloosa counties, yet it barely extends a reliable signal into Pensacola itsef. Meanwhile, WHBR covers Pensacola and Mobile quite reliably.

At least now, 33.4 is a blank subchannel with no audio or video signal (but can set off the signal meter)...so outside of us who know what is really going on....no one would ever be able to know what is happening.

Then again, this is a missed opportunity to broadcast a signal to large swaths of the market who have never been able to see this channel...but the intent is to likely keep it on the Florida side of the market....much like WEAR is pretty much Florida based news-wise and the other stations (especially WKRG) focus more on the Alabama side.
post #3798 of 4173
Add Mediacom to the list of cable/satellite companies that LIN is playing last minute hardball with....

http://www.fox10tv.com/dpp/about_us/...ission-dispute
post #3799 of 4173
So am I the only one who still thinks WPMI's audio sounds like garbage? I wrote them again and didn't get a response this time. I ruled out (terrible, terrible) Riviera Cable by checking OTA and it's the same. Night and day quality difference between them and other network locals, especially on the home theater or headphones.

I do think Riviera Cable has begun overcompressing both the video and audio of HD channels as they are all now super-blocky and the audio is dull, but WPMI is like this off the air as well. It started when the picture got "darker" and they started running HD syndicated fare.
post #3800 of 4173
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Servo View Post
So am I the only one who still thinks WPMI's audio sounds like garbage? I wrote them again and didn't get a response this time. I ruled out (terrible, terrible) Riviera Cable by checking OTA and it's the same. Night and day quality difference between them and other network locals, especially on the home theater or headphones.

I do think Riviera Cable has begun overcompressing both the video and audio of HD channels as they are all now super-blocky and the audio is dull, but WPMI is like this off the air as well. It started when the picture got "darker" and they started running HD syndicated fare.
I find it ironic that while WJTC is fine...it's WPMI that's having problems. In this day and age of duopolies and shared services, you would think that the equipment used on both stations would be nearly identical (especially since both stations are putting out a 1080i signal OTA). Perhaps there's some encoding glitch somewhere along the line (since WPMI has a subchannel) or it could be a piece of NBC equipment throwing things off.
post #3801 of 4173
Quote:
Originally Posted by esdx View Post

I find it ironic that while WJTC is fine...it's WPMI that's having problems. In this day and age of duopolies and shared services, you would think that the equipment used on both stations would be nearly identical (especially since both stations are putting out a 1080i signal OTA). Perhaps there's some encoding glitch somewhere along the line (since WPMI has a subchannel) or it could be a piece of NBC equipment throwing things off.

Whatever it is, it affects local products like news and commercials in addition to network fare. It must not be bad enough for anyone else to notice; there's been zero complaints about it on their Facebook page since it happened.

Oh well, sometimes having "golden ears" as friends say is more of a burden than a blessing.
post #3802 of 4173
BLAB-TV is back up and running on 33-4.
post #3803 of 4173
While watching the Saints-Raiders last night, I did notice a local 15 news promo in widescreen, and what appeared to be high def. I knew from prior posts they were introducing the ability to run syndication in high def. Are they implementing the same from their news, also?
post #3804 of 4173
Quote:
Originally Posted by mobilelawyer View Post

While watching the Saints-Raiders last night, I did notice a local 15 news promo in widescreen, and what appeared to be high def. I knew from prior posts they were introducing the ability to run syndication in high def. Are they implementing the same from their news, also?

I asked them via Facebook about that and all I got is a "we want to go HD for news at some point, but it's costly." They seem to be doing it one piece at a time with WJTC and WPMI creeping towards HD together. The other night the Two and Half Men after the Sunday national news was in HD, so that's some progress. Audio is still ratty, though.
post #3805 of 4173
Unless LIN is holding until the LAST possible second to strike a deal with Mediacom (or vice versa)....expect WALA & WFNA to be gone from Mediacom!

Let's see, LIN's done this with....Brighthouse, Dish Network, Cox...
I'd hate to think when Comcast and DirecTV's retrans deals are up....especially with LIN's current track record thus far.
post #3806 of 4173
Quote:
Originally Posted by esdx View Post

I believe it's a phased process. Certain areas have already undergone the transition, while others remain with analog extended basic service. The infrastructure may be undergoing upgrades throughout the system which may be part of the delay.

I got the Xfinity upgrade over a month ago. More HD channels than I can watch. BBC AmericaHD, 286 is by far my new favorite.

The only downside is that my slingbox doesn't work any longer.
post #3807 of 4173
You guys are making me jealous. BBC-A HD? *sob*

I'm stuck with Riviera Cable due to no LOS to Dish or DirecTV. The HD is terrible, overcompressed and the DVR is the worst electronic device I've ever used, period.

As for WFNA and WALA. I hate it that LIN is playing such hardball. My experience has been those two channels are the hardest to receive consistently of all the commercial OTA broadcasts in the area, especially for folks in west Mobile or Pensacola.
post #3808 of 4173
I live in Semmes and was wanting to get an OTA antenna. I bought an OTA antenna 18 or so years ago and couldn't get but 2 channles. So I got Dtv.

I tried again in 2007 with all the stations going digital. I still only get 2 channels steadily. Some come in and go back out.

I'm building a new house on my land and want to try again. I took down my 18 year old antenna and noticed it was all corroded. I'm hoping I can spend some money on a new and possibly better long range antenna and pick up all my network stations. Mounted on the house should give it about 15 feet or more in height.

I also saw some antennas on Amazon that says they pick up channels 50 miles away. The farthest stations seem to be about 40 miles away. All are UHF but WALA which is VHF. Most of the HD antennas seem to be UHF. I may have to look into getting a combo antenna. Not sure. Anyone in Semmes with an OTA antenna that get all the networks?
post #3809 of 4173
While watching the football games last night on 15 and 44, over on 15, I saw a couple of commercials airing in High Definition...one of which ran during the 10p newscast, confirming the fact that 15 can now run these spots. Meanwhile, the audio problem still plagues them, but I'll cut them some slack as they work out the glitches....

Over on 44, it seemed a lot of their spots had rendering issues as they appeared flickery when they ran. This happened during the South game.

Now it appears that every major station (WEAR, WKRG, WALA, WPMI, WFGX, WJTC & WFNA) in the market can run HD commercials locally, and that WPMI/WJTC and WKRG have some capabilities of doing spots in HD (promos only...no commercials) Meanwhile, WEAR has been plugging away in HD for well over two years now!

The next big test will be whether or not WKRG will be running Big Bang Theory syndicated episodes in HD.....and if WALA/WFNA will ever upgrade to show their syndicated material in HD...
post #3810 of 4173
Great report! I am anxious to see whether the Bama game broadcasts in "no issue" high def tomorrow. There were issues last season on SEC Network games on 44.
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