Originally Posted by tjdean
What hardware do 8 & 13 lack in order to broadcast syndicated shows in HD? All the Buffalo stations broadcast their syndicated shows like Jeopardy, Dr. Oz, Wheel of Fortune in HD.
It usually is just not a single piece of equipment that any station lacks, but a whole series of things:
- First, they need to receive the program in HD - meaning that they need a HD satellite receiver for EACH PROGRAM SOURCE (keep in mind that there are many different syndicated program sources). Also note that, even today, there are lots of programs (the some of the "Judge" shows, for example) that are not yet HD.
- Then the station needs HD servers to capture those shows in HD for playout later.
- From that point, the station needs Infrastructure (cabling, routers, etc.) that support HD. Often this includes automation systems.
Usually, local stations (including channel 10) have implemented HD in small (even "Jerry-rigged") steps. Back when digital TV started (and most all stations were mostly analog), stations would use simple small switches that would feed the digital transmitter either from the regular SD stream or the network HD feed. Remember all those times that stations would "forget" to "throw the switch" for HD? When the actual transition came (and analog was shut off), other expedient solutions were found.
The addition of HD News often means the rebuilding of the newsroom control room, change in field equipment to HD (though HD field cameras can
operate in 16:9 SD mode for transmission via the field truck SD microwave link). But often the newsroom control room is one thing, while the Master Control (and infrastructure) is something else. Like in the early days of HD, a simple switch can be used to used to switch between the HD Network, the HD Newsroom and the regular SD infrastructure.
As I understand it, the costs to change the rest of the infrastructure used to be VERY expensive - so local stations would do the bare minimum. This has been particularly true in a down economy and with increased competition for viewership from cable channels and the Internet. But costs have been coming way down, so we will likely see more total HD integration in the future.
BTW: I do not mean to minimize the addition of HD news - it is a major task, and stations that accomplish that as well as both Channels 8/31 and 13 are to be congratulated. It is a BIG step towards total integration of HD.