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Columbia, SC - HDTV - Page 3

post #61 of 10058
Thread Starter 
Steve,

From what I have read and seen Cain is right on the money with those models. When I get one it will probably be one of those CM models or possibly an outdoor RS model. I would love to try one of the little RS Double Bowtie models but fear at my distance it won't work (30+). When one talks of antennas one might start first at www.antennaweb.org and see what they recommendation they make and go from there.

Bruce
post #62 of 10058
Thanks John. I will keep those in mind.

I just finished installing my antenna in the attic. It's got an unobstructed view (minus the house wall) of the eastern sky. I forgot that PBS broadcasts in DTV 24x7, so I was able to test the signal strength. It is showing about 90% strength for 32-1 and 32-2 (32-0 (HDTV) comes on at night). I will test WLTX-DT tonight and report back.

Based on those number's I think I am fine. What do yall think?
post #63 of 10058
Thanks Bruce. I double checked with www.antennaweb.org this morning before I put up my antenna. It said the antenna I put up was fine (yellow zone). And from the numbers I am getting so far (90s), I "think" am fine.

I guess I will know for sure when I view some HDTV tonight.
post #64 of 10058
I am loving WLTX-DT. I think we show go ahead with some letters of appreciation to the state paper.

Tonight I watched JAG, The Guardian, and Judging Amy in HDTV with my grandparents (even 80 year olds love HDTV). I was getting 100% signal strength in Darlington SC with a Mits HD-5 receiver using a CM 4248 and Titan 7777.

Scott
post #65 of 10058
BTW, the address to mail your letters is as follows:

The State newspaper
Letters to the Editor
P.O. Box 1333
Columbia, SC
29202

I think this would be great publicity.

Scott
post #66 of 10058
Thread Starter 
Starting this past Tuesday WRLK-DT changed their broadcast methodogy to 1HD and two SD services at the same time. WRLK Eng says they are now using a new encoder that does this; before it was either 1HD or 2SD. This change allows them to meet the upcoming FCC rule on broadcasting digital and provides a mechanism for them to add services required by their state mandate. The second service will be used largely for "PBS You" programming until a South Carolina Channel goes on the air this fall. Until they can meet the simulcast requirement in HD they have to run two SD services.

They have reduced the bandwidth previously available for HD by about 3Mb. The PQ may reflect therefore the lower bandwidth. WRLK will also be decoding/re-encoding the stream from PBS rather than passing it straight through as this allows them to insert local info/station breaks. This may induce some additional artifacts which cannot be helped. They say they are continuing to tweak the system to work on improving the PQ.

Bruce
post #67 of 10058
WIS just had their construction permit extension rejected by the FCC. The also were scolded for not being on the air yet. Maybe they will get off their ass now and give us some HDTV.

Scott
post #68 of 10058
Thread Starter 
I talked to TWC this week about WLTX and Discovery HD Theater. Regarding WLTX the comment was made again that TWC had already offered a standard agreement to WLTX and the ball was in the station's court.

I called WLTX today and talked to Rich O'Dell the station's General Mangager. He said it was in the hands of lawyers between Gannett and TWC. They had received a transmission agreement offer from TWC but there were "issues" to be resolved. Gannett wanted the entire broadcast signal passed (which includes Gemstar guide and datacasting stuff) and TWC wanted to strip off all but the program data. So, impass time. He felt it would probably be resolved soon (and by Sept). We will see.

Was also told to expect some additional programming in HD from CBS this fall (no further details). Be nice to just get the original and go from there . ahem....

When I asked TWC about Discovery HD Theater he had no idea of what.... when.... if. I ended up passing some urls to my local contact to be passed to Cola.

Latest on WOLO was (on 6/8) they were working on getting the rest of the gear needed but no firm on-air date was to be had.

Bruce
post #69 of 10058
Thanks for the update Bruce. Stay on 'em.

Scott
post #70 of 10058
Thread Starter 
FWIW, yesterday's The State newspaper has an article saying WOLO will be moving their news operation to Charlotte where it will be merged with it's sister stations WCCB. "The move is designed to sidestep the cost of converting, per FCC dictates, to digital broadcasting, said WOLO general manager Chris Bailey. That's about $1.5 million in technical upgrades." Not said is how this might affect the other aspects of their DT broadcasting. -- Bruce
post #71 of 10058
I am surprised WOLO is doing this.

I think it will eliminate the last two or three viewers who watch their news anyway!!

-- Cain
post #72 of 10058
Hi Guys,

I just found this forum. Allow me to introduce myself. My real name is Steve and I live in Lexington. I see we already have a Steve here, so I am Floundahead (don't ask).

Last week I hooked up my new RCA DTC100 STB to my Pioneer HDTV ready 53" receiver. I'm using a cheap old UHF antenna an am receiving pretty good signals on WLTX and the PBS station. I am amazed at the picture quality. I have tracked down a Radio Shack UHF antenna that was recommended and it is on order. Of course I'm receiving what Directv has to offer. Anyway, I'm thrilled to find this forum.

Here is a email that I recently received from the Director of Engineering at WACH-TV 57. I'm not a huge fan of their programming. I just want all the HDTV I can get.

Dear Steve,
Thank you so much for your interest in our TV station. I congratulate you for moving ahead of the curve and purchasing digital equipment. You must be the envy of your neighborhood. Your enjoyment level will increase very soon. My target date for DTV is late or mid September. We are installing a brand new DTV and a brand new NTSC transmitter as we speak. You will be interested in knowing that we will be going from 520 feet to 1,700 feet with our new transmitter antennas. Keep watching and feel free to contact me at any time for updates. You the viewer are our most valuable asset.

Respectfully,
Lee Latham
Dir of Eng.
WACH-TV 57
mailto:llatham@wach.com


I will be watching this forum for any activity.

Thanks,
post #73 of 10058
Thread Starter 
I was out of town for about a week and upon returning I notice that changing HD channels now seems much slower than before. I am using a SA3100HD. Anyone else experienced anything similar?. All the other channels including 802 and 803 seem okay. I have called TWC and given this observation to my contact there but I thought I should ask the group to see if they have noticed this as well.

I have also noticed a new info box in the upper right when you press the "menu" key. Seems mostlly redundant (and hope not related to problem above).

And greetings to Floundahead.... welcome to this little corner of the world
Thanks for the WACH update; sounds like they found a solution to their tower problem. However keep in mind that FOX network, in broadcasting DTV, does not do High Defintion. Instead they do only Standard Definition (which does include a widescreen format).

Regards,
Bruce
post #74 of 10058
WACH will be located on the WOLO tower, If I am correct..
Welcome "floundahead"...
post #75 of 10058
Thread Starter 
Bob,
I do believe your right on the WACH tower! Checking 100kwatts site the coordinates are the same for both WOLO and WACH. So... guess they got a workable agreement with American Tower. Great! It also appears WIS/NBC got something going too and they now list their current tower location for their DT station. Time will tell. Thanks again for the heads up. -- Bruce
post #76 of 10058
Hey guys! I am on TW and I think that they are testing WLTX between HBO-HD and SHOW-HD. Let me know if y'all hear anything new.

Thanks!
Jay
post #77 of 10058
Happy to see you are with us, Steve! Welcome. There are only about 12 of us in the Columbia area that come to this site and are probably 80% of the HD subscribers on TW.

BRUCE,
I have experienced a huge difference with whatever software upgrade they did on our receivers. The guide may be the slowest I have ever seen now. It is about as bad as 1st generation DSS receivers. I will be calling them to let them know the problem. Keep me posted on your receivers. I did notice that HBO-On Demand has a new menu on it.

Take care guys!!

Jay
post #78 of 10058
Thread Starter 
Please, all TWCSC HD subs who also notice/ experience the slow guide please post here (or PM me) and call TWC (talk to Dir Sales maybe, Mr Whiting, not just the CSR). I called my contact the other day but I think it will take more complaints to get them to look at it. And tonight I too saw the new HOD menu. Think iControl is a bit different too.

Jay: I just checked the guide and did not see a new channel in the 9xx series. Where/ what did you see for the possible "testing"? Maybe we all should call WLTX's General Manager (Rich O'Dell) just to let him know we do exist and are "waiting"...

Bruce
post #79 of 10058
hi all,

I live in Lexington and have also been waiting to see if the "test" channel between HBO-HD & Showtime-HD will become WLTX-DT. I noticed the guide seems different, I'll check tonight to see if it's any slower.

Also, 4 people at my workplace have 3100HD boxes, so hopefully the people on this site don't represent 80% of TW's HD subscribers in Columbia.

Rich
post #80 of 10058
Thread Starter 
I just talked to Rich O'Dell, WLTX. They are still working on the contract with TWC and supposedly they are "close" to an agreement. He said they hope to be on by mid Sept if all goes well. Thus this may or may not be related to what TWC is doing with their test channel.

I also asked him about their SD programming on the TWC channel and he said they will be upconverting it all to 1080i. Not unexpected and this will give us black windowbox bars. This I am not a fan of and the use of which will cause me to immediately switch over to their analog channel. We talked about gray bars. He was of the impression gray was not good either. I mentioned how some sets (Mits; Pioneer) rock the 4:3 images sideways to prevent vertical demarcation lines. Personally I wish they could do something similar but that might not be suitable for all. Perhaps others might provide them their preference.

Bruce
post #81 of 10058
Thanks for the update Bruce. I am happy to hear that things may be up by mid sept. It would be really nice if they could have it up in time for USC/UGA that will air on CBS at 330 on Sept 14. Take care!
post #82 of 10058
Anyone hear anything new about the test channel and the WLTX agreement?

Thanks!
Jay
post #83 of 10058
Anyone living in the Lexington area receiving OTA HDTV? If so, what antenna are you using?

Thanks,
post #84 of 10058
Thread Starter 
Steve aka floundahead,

Great question.

While I have no digital experience but I would guess a Radio Shack Double Bowtie might be worth a shot if you have few obstacles between you and the towers. Recently there were on closeout sale for $10 plus you will need a balun ($3). From Sumter... about 24miles as the birdie flies to the antenna farm over by Elgin ... I can get the analog signals from WIS and WLTX with mine. You should be closer (and so will be WRLK but no guarantee it will work with WOLO's Ch 8).

Note there is a Carolina Area HDTV List composed of a number of engineers from stations in Cola, Charlotte, and Raleigh plus a handful of just us regular viewers. Hopefully there you could get a better answer than I just gave. Anyway, an email to Bill Taylor .... taylor@fmci.net .... will get you on it. Its a mailing list that gets a couple of questions/remarks and dozen or so answers in a typical week. One reason they exist is to provide feedback to the stations and for users to get antenna assistance.

Keep in mind you will need VHF capability with your antenna since WOLO-DT will be on channel 8 when they come (back) on .

Regards.
Bruce

ps..... four of the little darlings huh; wow and all identical. double wow.
post #85 of 10058
For what its worth, The State (Sunday Edition) yesterday had an article on HDTV which included somewhat of a confirmation of what we have heard. WIS in Jan 2003, WACH and WOLO by the end of October. I don't recall anything about a WB station around here, though.
post #86 of 10058
One more thing, I live in Columbia off Garners Ferry Rd, Does it sound strange to anyone that I only get 69-72% on both WLTX and SCETV on A Dish 6000. I have a CM 4248 on my roof. I feel like I should have better reception, what do you guys think?
TIA
Craig
post #87 of 10058
Thread Starter 
chummel,

I too caught Mr. Nye's articles (two) via the State's website. (He has also had a few articles lately regarding WOLO's situation). The first article unfortunately was in part a puff piece that reiterated the myth that HD requires ultra big bucks. The linked FAQ (bottom of page) was a bit more factual and down to earth but also somewhat shallow and incomplete. For the first time though he had a number (275) for TWC HD users in Cola and Orangeburg. I wonder if that included the four of us here in Sumter? .

WB: WQHB Ch 63 is currently a UPN/PAX/WB affiliate in Sumter and their new tower will be over by Cola. 100K Watts lists their DT channel as 38 (Nye's article said 28) and 100kWatts indicates it will only be WB 04/2003.

Re: antenna... I don't know if your numbers are bad or not. Are you getting signal dropouts? All I could do is guess and I am no expert. Have you tried different antenna heights (up or down?). Are you using a rotor (given the towers are not collocated I would wonder if your pointing is in-between vice right on to either.

Bruce
post #88 of 10058
chummel,

Your signal strength meter is a representation of signal quality and not a measure of true strength (i.e. voltage). you probably have some multipath issues nearby.

I get WLTX in Florence with a CM4251 at 95-100% most of the time. Occasionally drops to 85%. Never (knock on wood ) drops out.

BTW, the CM 4248 is a great antenna for DTV in the UHF band.

Scott

Bob Davis, any updates?
post #89 of 10058
Scott,

Since your in Florence have you heard any word when WPDE 15 or WWMB 21 will go live? Titantv listed WWMB for Sept 1st. As you see they didn't start Sept 1st and it now says Under Review.
post #90 of 10058
Hey Scott-
Hang loose. Working on WOLO as we speak, awaiting completion of the
DS3 Telco circuit..Watching ABC HD here daily..Of Course, the move of WOLO analog to Charlotte MUST come first. But,
Things look good for 10/1st, however no guarantees, nor are any warranties expressed or implied. Taxes, tag and title not included, your mileage may vary. Results not typical, the FDA has not investigated these claims for accuracy. Consult your physician before engaging in any exercise program. Compensated endorser used in this program.
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