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Any recent 5th generation receiver chip news? - Page 2

post #31 of 433
Thread Starter 
March 16, 2005

Four Out Of Four Congressional Leaders Agree: Analog Cut-Off Date Needed To Complete DTV Transition

CEA's 10th Annual HDTV Summit Focuses On The End Of Analog; Success Of HDTV



With the end of the analog television era in clear sight, digital television (DTV) government and industry leaders convened for the Consumer Electronics Association's (CEA) 10th annual HDTV Summit - The Analog Cut-Off: What Will It Take? What Are the Opportunities? Four congressional DTV leaders led a chorus of support for the establishment of a hard cut-off date for analog television broadcasts that resounded throughout the conference.

Soon, DTV will be known as TV, said CEA President and CEO Gary Shapiro as he opened the conference. The standout will remain HDTV. CEA has aggressive projections for future HDTV sales, but how American consumers will judge our work remains to be seen and largely depends on our actions going forward.

Stating CEA's support for a date-certain for the analog cut-off, Shapiro laid out policy prescriptions for the swift completion of the DTV transition, including Federal Communications Commission (FCC) enforcement of cable industry reliance upon the same security as consumer electronics manufacturers. Shapiro also pushed for DTV promotions by all industries involved in the transition.

Several members of Congress addressed the crowded convention center during morning keynotes, all expressing their support for a date-certain for the end of analog broadcasts The first keynote speaker, Congressman Joe Barton (R-TX), chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, indicated he would introduce legislation on the issue later this spring or summer.

Everybody wants the certainty of a set date except for the broadcasters, Barton said. He stated that the projected $4 billion to $5 billion windfall that is expected from the auction of the returned spectrum could help fund the transition costs for those consumers who cannot afford to buy digital tuners. He concluded by encouraging Summit attendees to get involved on Capitol Hill and educate lawmakers about how the digital transition affects consumers.

I'm on the same page as Joe Barton, said Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet Fred Upton (R-MI), as he took the podium following Chairman Barton. The cut-off could be financed by the proceeds of the spectrum auction. Education is a critical component in preparing the consumer.

Senator John Ensign (R-NV), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Technology, Innovation and Competitiveness, completed the morning keynotes. A date certain is what we need so there is predictability in the market so consumers will invest. He added, Educate members of Congress why a date certain is so important.

The first panel session of the day featured industry experts and policymakers who weighed in on factors impeding the transition. Gigi Sohn, president and co-founder of Public Knowledge, and CEA's Shapiro immediately agreed broadcasters were the most notable hurdle to the transition. Defending his industry, MSTV President David Donovan countered that consumers were ultimately blocking the transition. The entire panel agreed more consumer education is needed by industry and Congress and that the best date for an analog cut-off is sooner, rather than later. Several argued, however, that the original date of 2006 is still the goal.

DTV trends and sales projections dominated an informative sales forecast panel moderated by Los Angeles Times Staff Writer Jon Healey. Panelists who had been bearish about DTV sales in the early years of the transition, noted that falling prices and increasing content were driving larger numbers of DTV sales than they had previously predicted.

An important consideration for driving future sales is to sell the experience, including what HD shows are available, instead of just focusing on the technology, offered panelist Philip Swann, CEO of TV Predictions. Fellow panelists Sean Wargo, CEA Director of Industry Analysis, and Josh Bernoff, Forrester Vice President and Principal Analyst, announced updated DTV sales projections. Wargo said DTV unit sales would reach 20 million units in 2005 alone, amounting to 36 million cumulative units sold since introduction; Bernoff was more cautious, projecting total DTV unit sales of 50 million from market introduction in 1998 through 2009.

Senator John McCain (R-AZ), former Chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, addressed Summit attendees during the 5th Annual Academy of Digital Television Pioneers Awards luncheon as he accepted his award for Best DTV Government Leadership. McCain, who also backs a hard analog cut-off date, expressed his support for Chairman Barton's bill and pledged to continue to work so that millions would be able to appreciate high-definition television. Awards also were presented to other leaders in the digital television transition and content development. For a full list of award winners, visit www.ce.org.

The future of the analog spectrum and the end of the 18-year DTV transition were the topics of discussion in the final session of the Summit, entitled Beyond HD Technology: Opportunities for the Returned Analog Spectrum. Moderator Drew Clark of the National Journal's Technology Daily led a dialogue on how companies expect to participate in the 700 megahertz band. Panelists from the information technology and wireless industries pointed to numerous possible uses, including public safety and third-generation (3G) wireless services, such as full streaming video. The panelists also debated whether licensing the spectrum space would inhibit technological innovations and whether wireless communication would be the best use of the newly freed space.

The 10th annual HDTV Summit concluded with an HDTV prize drawing from ESPN HD and speculation about what next year's Summit will have in store. Many agreed the 11th annual HDTV Summit will likely focus on financing the cut-off date and continued broadcaster resistance.
post #32 of 433
Quote:


The first panel session of the day featured industry experts and policymakers who weighed in on factors impeding the transition. Gigi Sohn, president and co-founder of Public Knowledge, and CEA's Shapiro immediately agreed broadcasters were the most notable hurdle to the transition. Defending his industry, MSTV President David Donovan countered that consumers were ultimately blocking the transition.

I think this is totally unfair to broadcasters and consumers. The CE companies certainly have done things to impede the transition. Why are STBs still not widely available or promoted? Why did the CEA sue to stop the tuner mandate? Why do CE companies oppose putting warnings on analog sets?
post #33 of 433
I spend most of my career in the TV Broadcasting business, working for Ikegami, Nucomm and with the Hitachi Professional TV Broadcast Group as a systems engineering manager and business development manager.

I have gone to the past 24 NAB Shows and my recollection of why NBC, ABC and CBS dropped out of NAB was strictly because of the rapid rise in NAB membership for the three networks. FOX and most independent broadcasters are still active members and so are most professional broadcast manufacturers.

In fact, almost without exception all station Chief Engineers and most of the engineering staff of every broadcast station including the three networks still go to every day of the NAB convention. The reason for dropping membership was the cost and that fact that membership was totally unnecessary to get all of the benefits of the NAB Show.

Rich, we have access and sell an enormous volume of the best ATSC/NTSC/QAM set top box. We do experience a shortage every once in a while as the demand is very high, but overall we have access and sell through very well to any and all very happy consumers this terrific box everyday.

-Robert
post #34 of 433
"In fact, almost without exception all station Chief Engineers and most of the engineering staff of every broadcast station including the three networks still go to every day of the NAB convention. The reason for dropping membership was the cost and that fact that membership was totally unnecessary to get all of the benefits of the NAB Show."

That the way it used to be: Now is different,

Engneers can go if :

1. Pay their own way.
2. Pay their expenses.
3. Take vacation time to go..
4. Make sure someone is available to cover in case of trouble.
5. Are on call 24/7....


Trust me I know...

(NAB attendee 4 of last 5 years)
post #35 of 433
William I am sorry we don't agree on this. I have heard of station budget cuts that forced some engineering staff to stay home or pay their own way. But I assure all three networks send many engineers from all O& O stations with all expenses paid and on company time. More proof is that NAB attendance is up every year.

BTW, did anyone know that NAB will have its first NYC show at the Jacob Javits Convention Center this year.
post #36 of 433
That may be the case if the station is an O and O, but its not the case for the rest of the stations.

You said every station and every engineer...
post #37 of 433
<<The reason for dropping membership was the cost and that fact that membership was totally unnecessary to get all of the benefits of the NAB Show.>>
Simply not correct. Sorry.
The reason, the ONLY reason several major networks dropped NAB membership was because the NAB did not support, in fact opposed, the networks agenda of loosing the ownership restrictions.
post #38 of 433
I have checked with both Zenith and LG customer service. Here is what I have been told re the 5th gen chip. LG has dropped all production of Zenith STBs, has taken STBs "In House". All LG branded STBs will continue to use the 4th generation chip. LG is putting their 5th generation chips ONLY in their branded integrated TV sets.
My guess is this a hard-ball marketing ploy to force sales of their line of TV sets.

I personally think this is rotten. Zenith, historicaly one of the finest US consumer electronics manufacturers and a key R & D player in the development of the US Digital Television system, as well as the developer of the "5th Generation" chip, has been gobbled up by an commercialy agressive asian country. It now appears that we can not have the best possible Digital TV unless we buy their TVs. I can hardly blame LG or Korea for trying to get as big a piece of the action as they can. It is just another nail in the coffin for the US, economicly and technologicaly.

Korea is to be admired for the giant strides they have made industrialy. The incredible emergence of LG, Samsung, Korean ship builders, Korean auto makers, bridge constructors and many other heavy industries as world leaders is truely breathtaking.

Meanwhile we sit on our laurels, argue and whine, while selling ourselves out. Our biggest export is scrap for crying out loud!! We are a net importer of food!! (Oh, i guess that is ok because our agricultrue land will be better used to build more condos and shopping malls!) Some of the richest farm land in California has been plowed under to build massive freeway interchanges and enormus shopping plazas. Manufacturing in our state? Locheed aircraft-Gone. Proctor and Gamble-Gone. General Motors-Gone. Firestone tire and rubber-Gone. Hughes Aircraft-Gone. McDonnel-Douglas aircraft-Gone Ford Motor Co.-Gone. Boeing-fadeing fast. With the dropping of the import quotas on China, the textile industry in CA will be packing up soon. Well, that would give us cleaner air to breath, except for all the exhaust from trucks hauling cargo containers from Los Angeles ports through town on the way to US markets.

Sorry guys, I only ment to post about the elusive "5th Generation" chip that got our hopes up. Never meant to get on this rant.
post #39 of 433
<<Gigi Sohn, president and co-founder of Public Knowledge, and CEA’s Shapiro immediately agreed broadcasters were the most notable hurdle to the transition.>>

OUTRAGEOUS!! Just egregious! Those of us in OTA broadcasting have struggled heroically with new, unfamiliar technology to put out the best possible digital pictures. Our employers have invested hundreds of millions in duplicating their nationwide distribution networks, install new transmitters, towers and antennas as well as studio facilities. They have spent untold millions in converting a large portion of prime time programming to HD. All this while, even now, one of the biggest retailers in the country refuses to stock OTA STBs, has down played digital and HDTV. even trained it sales staff to tell shoppers OTA Digital TV "doesn't work", and now sells it only because the law requires integrated sets in the marketplace.

While most broadcasters jumped through huge hoops for seven years, everyone else squabbled over modulation standards, refused to carry local Digital on cable systems, dragged their feed on development of less expensive STBs and tuners. In general, everyone that could, the FCC and some posters here included, threw sand in the face of the broadcasters.

Yikes!! Is fairness out of date? Something soooo previous century?
post #40 of 433
<<Kinda like what was done in the 1800's with the Native Americans..>>

And in the 1900s!

(Geez! I'm getting to be such a curmudgeon! Bet you guys wish I'd shut up by now!)
post #41 of 433
Quote:


Originally posted by Tony Nx
I have checked with both Zenith and LG customer service. Here is what I have been told re the 5th gen chip. LG has dropped all production of Zenith STBs, has taken STBs "In House". All LG branded STBs will continue to use the 4th generation chip. LG is putting their 5th generation chips ONLY in their branded integrated TV sets. My guess is this a hard-ball marketing ploy to force sales of their line of TV sets.

If they'd offer to replace the 4th generation chip in my Zenith HDTV with a 5th generation chip, I'd be a happy camper. What they're doing is slapping me (and all other early adopters) in the face for buying their television in the first place - I wanted to buy an external 5th-generation STB to use on that television (and for time-shifting, which is a different story.) So now my choice is to live with the reception that was built-in, or buy a whole new television?

In the meantime, Samsung claims to have developed a similar technology and they're working on making STBs integrating it. I'll end up buying their competitor's product because they're leaving me out to dry.

Honestly, this is a short-sighted, stupid decision on LG's part. They could sell millions of STBs with this chipset and they're choosing instead to shut themselves off from that market. When people go out and buy a new television, tuners are built-in nowadays. The decision to buy a STB and the decision to buy an HDTV are separate decisions - few people are going to invest $1000-$3000 in a new television just to get an upgraded tuner, especially if they have an HDTV now.

LG needs to be called to the table on this one. Booooooooo!
post #42 of 433
More likely later generations will reappear in discrete boxes as we get closer to the transition and the small numbers of HDTV monitors have the large number of analog TVs added to the pool of eligible sets. There will certainly be incentive at that point to sell your latest & best reception technology.
post #43 of 433
Quote:


While most broadcasters jumped through huge hoops for seven years, everyone else squabbled over modulation standards...

The only group I saw squabbling over modulation standards were broadcasters. Who else?


Oh, I almost forgot.......Bob.
post #44 of 433
Rich,

Broadcasters want a system that works reliably and has ease of use to the consumer....

How many people on here have been through many iterations of their antenna system just to get their decoders to work??

In my opinion, the mod standard IS the biggest problem (even worse than PSIP)... second only to the pack of lies that the keep coming from the receiver side of " its just around the corner"... I think CEA has no intention of stopping the sales of analog sets or fixing the DTV decoders as most people don't watch television via OTA reception...



The 1999 COFDM consumer settop boxes would still preform rings around the current generation of ATSC chipsets..


Most people here bought into the idea that C***M would kill HD .... that was completely wrong as the Europe is considering HD right now...

If the reception could have been done in a moving vehicle at 60 miles an hour driving in New York City imagine how easy it would have been to pick up at home... I remember you saying something that no one would want mobile television... Look at the number of LCD displays mounted on seat backs as you drive down the road and tell me there is no place for mobile video or data..

It has been proven that the theoretical C/N advantage 8-VSB is supposed to have over C***M is bogus in the real world.

It has also been proven that 8-VSB is not as resistant to impulse noise as first thought as DTV on VHF-Lo is still very problematic...


The emperor has no clothes.....

Engineers evaluate.... politicians legislate...
post #45 of 433
[quote]Originally posted by Rich Peterson
[b]The only group I saw squabbling over modulation standards were broadcasters. Who else?


Can't think of anyone else, and the only Broadcaster that really raised a fuss in favor of COFDM was Sinclair group. But it did really muddy the waters. Caused several of the largest players in the receiver area to pull back their development efforts due to the uncertainty. Really stopped the Digital transition dead in the water for quite a while.

The argument over COFDM can go on 'till the cows come home. Just as with religion and politics, personal preference is more of a factor that empirical data.

Reality is the FCC and industry are NOT EVER going to start back to square one and blow off 18 years of Research, testing, channel allocation studies and Billions of $ of installed hardware! It is absurd to think so. It is time to let this issue die!

It is silly to think that would be done just so people with more money than they can possibly spend in a lifetime can have a HDTV in every seat of their Hummer to keep the brats quiet on the way to soccer! (Sorry folks, it was just toooo much fun to throw in this last snotty remark!)

By the way, this "Anything European is better, Everything American sucks" crap is getting really tiresome! Take a look in Tijuana Mexico and see how many Mercedez-Benz autos are kept running by a guy living in a shack with a dozen tools and a bumper jack. Old GM & Ford autos are running all over the place!

This reminds me of all the "OH! Woe is me! I am stuck with NTSC instead of PAL" nonsense. I have evaluated pix from both, each has advantages. There was no great superiority of one over the other, after we got past the early stages.
post #46 of 433
P.S. Whatever the method, PAL vs NTSC / VHS vs Beta / COFDM vs 8-VSB,
it is good enough that most of us spend way too much time watching it!
post #47 of 433
Quote:


Can't think of anyone else, and the only Broadcaster that really raised a fuss in favor of COFDM was Sinclair group. But it did really muddy the waters. Caused several of the largest players in the receiver area to pull back their development efforts due to the uncertainty. Really stopped the Digital transition dead in the water for quite a while.

Well if you ask me it seems that many years later the waters are still somewhat muddy. And Sinclair is now an ATSC chearleader so I guess it's not their fault anymore.

I'm personally very skeptical about the slow roll out rate of good ATSC receivers but I don't really think that means the problem is my fault either.

If it is possible to market good 5'th gen boxes at reasonable prices then someone should prove it by selling some of them.

Do they still need more time???

- Tom
post #48 of 433
Thread Starter 
I still think it is a good idea to e-mail LG and express your displeasure at their not selling 5 generation OTA receivers. Talk of a company boycott might wake them up.

IB
post #49 of 433
Let's not get carried away. The 5th generation chip set is still not available in any devise yet.

Just because someone is speculating that LG has some grand plan to corner the market on HDTV sets by being the only integrated ATSC HDTV with the 5th generation tuner doesn't mean it's actually LG's master strategy plan to conquer the world.

LG has proven to be the innovator in STB technology, leap froging past Samsung and all other STB manufacturers. LG can have both markets when it's new ATSC tuner is available and I don't think they would overlook either market. LG, its employees, dealers and customers will have our cake and eat it too.

Give this great company a chance to complete the development of its next generation tuner and let's see what new products they offer. We may see LG license other STB manufacturers the technology or possibly come out with them integrated into LG or other TV's first, no one actually knows. What we do know is HD is terrific, available today and the future is very promising.

In the mean time if you want to enjoy the best and most reliable HD available buy the best and very affordable LST-4200A.

-Robert
post #50 of 433
Sinclair endorsed 8-VSB on the evidence in the 5th Gen prototype receiver... nothing more.. read the opendtv forum...

Now we are seeing that that unit is another failed magic bullet..

Sinclair was the most visible proponent of C***M but not the only one...

8-VSB was developed by Zenith when it was an American company, it is now
part of LG Electronics based in South Korea...(which was 8-VSB only but has added the C***M option now for mobile services)

No tests involving dynamic multipath were ever done on the 8-VSB system until AFTER it had been declared the standard..

If we were using the "other" standard we could have taken advantage of the receiver development that had already taken place and have a better product now.. instead we chose to re-invent the wheel and haven't even caught up.
(the channel spacing issue is easy to overcome with a simple filter).

Sinclair never pushed for a complete switch they did ask that the FCC allow both modes of operation so stations could make the choice. They even offer to replace every ATSC decoder in the country at their expense.

Again, CEA didn't care as most people are on cable and satellite, they didn't want to put ANY digital tuners (regardless of format) in the new sets..

I'll bet the FCC lurks this board (and the local reception board), and that is why they are scared to set a hard date...reception is just too hard for most people who depend on OTA television.

There is no equipment available that I know of for E-VSB at this time plus it will require a major retrofit of the DTV system to work..
post #51 of 433
Cable has more than 83% of the paid subscriber market. DIRECTV and Dish Network combined have less than 17%.

-Robert
post #52 of 433
Thread Starter 
LG has the chip in place in its new TVs. It's already out there. They are withholding it from stand alone OTA tuners to force us to buy their TVs. There strategy is to make more money. Our strategy should be to make them do the right thing and allow people who already own TVs to buy a stand alone OTA unit with the best technology. The rest is just happy sales talk.

IB
post #53 of 433
I am a large LG direct authorized dealer and do not know of any current LG TV that has the 5th generation ATSC tuner.

I'm on your side. Please don't misunderstand my comments as anything else. I am optimistic about HDTV and it's future.

Why would LG make the best current ATSC STBs (the LST-4200A, LST-3510A, LST3410A PVR) and not continue along the same path. LG also makes terrific ED and HDTVs.

-Robert
post #54 of 433
Answer:

Because the FCC hs mandated that ATSC tuners be in integrated sets but they did not mandate the production of settop decoders.
post #55 of 433
Quote:


Originally posted by William Smith
Answer:

Because the FCC hs mandated that ATSC tuners be in integrated sets but they did not mandate the production of settop decoders.

Thanks William, but I still don't understand why:

1. We don't send our letters to the FCC.

2. Why would LG not be motivated to make 5th generation ATSC tuners as they have a history of making cutting edge ATSC tuners up until now and they always made TV's at the same time. Why didn't LG hold back the current superior ATSC STBs and only make them for their HDTV's before? The same product and market conditions existed in the past, currently and in the future.

-Robert
post #56 of 433
Quote:


Originally posted by William Smith
Sinclair endorsed 8-VSB on the evidence in the 5th Gen prototype receiver... nothing more.. read the opendtv forum...

This is mostly a moot point since the vast majority of folks will still get their DTV from cable or satellite.
post #57 of 433
Quote:


This is mostly a moot point since the vast majority of folks will still get their DTV from cable or satellite.

That is true but also one of the most destructive ideas of this whole transition. Because of friendly must-carry legislation broadcasters see their future as brokering networks to cable. If it weren't for must-carry many marginal broadcasters would not be in business now. But the remainder would be striving for healty ditital TV from OTA broadcasting. And the better ones would still be on cable, and getting paid for it.

- Tom
post #58 of 433
Quote:


Originally posted by William Smith
Sinclair endorsed 8-VSB on the evidence in the 5th Gen prototype receiver... nothing more.. read the opendtv forum...

Now we are seeing that that unit is another failed magic bullet..

Sinclair was the most visible proponent of C***M but not the only one...

8-VSB was developed by Zenith when it was an American company, it is now
part of LG Electronics based in South Korea...(which was 8-VSB only but has added the C***M option now for mobile services)

No tests involving dynamic multipath were ever done on the 8-VSB system until AFTER it had been declared the standard..

If we were using the "other" standard we could have taken advantage of the receiver development that had already taken place and have a better product now.. instead we chose to re-invent the wheel and haven't even caught up.
(the channel spacing issue is easy to overcome with a simple filter).

Sinclair never pushed for a complete switch they did ask that the FCC allow both modes of operation so stations could make the choice. They even offer to replace every ATSC decoder in the country at their expense.

Again, CEA didn't care as most people are on cable and satellite, they didn't want to put ANY digital tuners (regardless of format) in the new sets..

I'll bet the FCC lurks this board (and the local reception board), and that is why they are scared to set a hard date...reception is just too hard for most people who depend on OTA television.

There is no equipment available that I know of for E-VSB at this time plus it will require a major retrofit of the DTV system to work..


Yes, we're all very unhappy the wrong modulation system was chosen.

Imagine how many opportunities for datacasting/mobile advertising ("services") and other types of business ventures have been missed.

post #59 of 433
It is curious though because occasionally our Congress persons talk about digital TV.

And yet in the last few years I don't think I've ever any of them ask "Are HDTV receivers good enough now to complete the transition?" or "Can we complete the digital transition without adequate indoor reception?".

I don't know if that means that everyone there thinks things are just fine or if they have all just agreed not to talk about that part.

- Tom
post #60 of 433
Quote:


Originally posted by Tony Nx
[...] and the only Broadcaster that really raised a fuss in favor of COFDM was Sinclair group.


Here is letter the NAB, NBC, and ABC sent to the FCC asserting the inadaquacy of 8-VSB and the better performance of COFDM on June 16, 2000:

DIGITAL TELEVISION AND 8-VSB
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