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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Al Bush, the General Manager of the Wichita NBC affiliate had this to say in reponse to an email asking about the availability of Digital broadcasts:


"KSN will be transmitting a digital signal sometime this fall. However, you should know the very few programs on any network will be transmitted in High Definition Television. Right now only the Jay Leno show is in HDTV and NBC does not have plans to significantly increase HDTV programming. The reason is because very few consumers can afford the full HDTV sets. Sets which can display the full 1080I signal today still cost around $7500."


-David Hays
 

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Tell him my HDTV (CRT FPJ) only cost $211.
 

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Does Mr. Bush know that sets that can display 3/4 of the 1080I signal cost under $2K today? Does he know that NBC also has crossing Jordan, in HDTV every week and in the past they have had the Olympics and many other HDTV special events? Does he know the Triple Crown is in HDTV this month on NBC? Does he know the FCC has asked that NBC and all the major networks to carry 50% of their primetime programming in HDTV next year? When he says "very few programs on any network will be in HDTV" does he realize how much HDTV CBS and ABC are aleady doing?


Either Mr. Bush is very ignorant of his business or he is a liar. Which is it? I seriously want to know. I have a very hard time believing Mr. Bush knows that little about what his competitors and the industry are up to.


The attitude displayed by Mr. Bush is representative of a small number of broadcasters that are having a great deal of influence on the speed of the digital transition. I applaud many broadcasters who are working to make the transition happen, but I despise those like Mr. Bush.
 

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Quote:
Sets which can display the full 1080I signal today still cost around $7500
I would say there is definitely some truth in that statement...however he does seem ignorant of NBC's future plans. Hopefully he doesn't know something we don't about NBC's fall schedule.
 

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Mr. Bush may have been a little disingenuous, but my understanding is that you need at least a 9" bulb in a projection set to show the full 1080i signal, and those sets still start in the 7-8K range.


Rick
 

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If you want to spend $7,000 on a bulb PJ --- that is your business. I spent $211 for my PJ, and it will do 720P and 1080I without flinching.
 

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I paid $3200 for my RPTV set with 9" guns, brand new w/factory warranty.


Not as impressive as Pocatello's buy, but a used PJ vs. a new RPTV is apples and oranges.


My response I got from our local NBC affiliate is below:


Mike:

We do not have that information at this time. When we have an approximate date I will e-mail you and the other five people that have inquired about us going digital.


George


Yeah, there are only five of us who have digital TV that care...


By the way, we are in the Fresno-Visalia area, #55 media market for Neilsen Ratings.
 

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"I will e-mail you and the other five people "


what a sarcastic remark. With an attitude like that, I say, long live satellite broadcasting, and the right to obtain your network programming from the city of your choice.
 

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It seems all the local broadcasters have to get in that line "however you should know that very few programs will be in High Defintion". All my locals responded in a similar fashion when i contacted them. It is as if they are happy that there is so little available on the networks, so they have an excuse not to get on with the transisiton. I feel that Hi-Def could be the saving grace for many a local broadcaster, losing so much market to cable only channels.................
 

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Well instead of just 5, he should have said "5.... homes out of 1000", then he would have actually been gracious since theres only about half that many give or take.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by cpto
Mr. Bush may have been a little disingenuous, but my understanding is that you need at least a 9" bulb in a projection set to show the full 1080i signal, and those sets still start in the 7-8K range.


Rick
Yes, he did say "Sets which can display the full 1080I signal today still cost around $7500", and I must admit that technically he may be correct. :rolleyes:


David
 

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The station manager at Hartford, CT CBS affiliate was quoted in a newspaper article last year saying there were only 27,000 HDTVs sold in the US as of May 2001! He also said that only people within seven miles of th transmitter could pick up HDTV signals!


I emailed him with links to TWICE and other sites to show him some accurate figures, and he said that was I was stating was "for the most part true".


To me it seems as if these guys are taking a hit to their bottom line because of upgrade to HDTV and they are extremely bitter about it.
 

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I'd like to see HDTV as much as anyone. I would probably even like to see EDTV over DTV. However, I recognize that the main problem with the transition is that there is no discernable short-term HDTV payoff for broadcasters. They won't attract more viewers. They won't sell any more adverts, or get higher rates for them. They won't increase their coverage areas. In fact, they won't get anything out of HDTV/DTV except higher costs.


The very foolish rule that broadcasters are allowed to subdivide their DTV signal (send multiple low-res sub-channels rather than one high-res HDTV signal) is an ill-considered sop to those broadcasters. The hope is that they might be able to get more revenue out of several channels than one. That would pay for the DTV transition. However, it probably won't work, because the final number of viewers' eyeballs available isn't changing, and it's not clear that offering more channels will really entice those viewers to spend more hours watching free TV (as opposed to websurfing, watching DVD's, mowing the lawn, whatever). More channels hasn't really meant more hours for DBS or cable customers... The extended sop is that b'casters can send data other than free TV programming. Since we can predict with absolute certainty that TV broadcasters will do a worse job of sending non-TV data than a proper datacaster would do, it is economically inefficient to give the bandwidth to TV broadcasters instead of auctioning it to pure data players.


The only way to get HDTV is to (a) require all-HDTV transmission (of course, recoding NTSC material should be allowed; how else would we get our reruns? But it should be recoded into 720p or 1080i), and (b) to auction the spectrum (channel allocation) of any broadcaster who doesn't think he can make a profit broadcasting HDTV. This way the strong broadcasters would invest in HDTV to retain their franchise (just as people invested in NTSC at the outset... planning to recoup their investment down the road) and the weak ones would just go away and stop bothering us. The advertising market would pick up because there would be fewer outlets and datacast users would get better service from dedicated suppliers.


The HDTV transition is suffering now from broadcasters who are watching the short-term bottom line, and don't see any way to improve it by spending money on HDTV/DTV. They're hogging the spectrum that could be repurposed and they're depriving all the rest of us of the benefits of new (HDTV) technology. However, broadcasters have a lot of political clout, and the stuck-in-the-mud types outnumber the entrepreneurial ones 100:1 (so the FCC and Congress are on the do-nothing side), so we're all screwed.
 

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Quote:
Yes, he did say "Sets which can display the full 1080I signal today still cost around $7500", and I must admit that technically he may be correct.
Even if he is technically correct, the statement is still intended to imply you need to spend $7500 to view HDTV. We all know even at 50%-75% of the full 1080i resolution the picture is way better than NTSC (stunning actually) and I believe he knows it too. His goal is no-doubt to try to keep you from buying HDTV equipment and slow down the transition so he can justify continually missing his HDTV startup deadline. IMHO that sucks.
 

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I don't think he is technically correct. My CRT PJs (I have a few) can all do 1080I and 720P.


What about the $3,000 HD RPTVs at the local electronics store? Are you telling me that they cannot resolve 1080I?
 

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They can display a 1080i signal, they just cant *fully* resolve every last pixel. It takes 9" CRT's to do that and none of the 3000.00 units have those.
 

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Fry's had a Sharp 55" HDTV ready widescreen on sale 2 weeks ago for $1579. It wasn't full 1080i resolution but it was 1080i. Mr Bush's statement is like saying we don't need gas stations because Mercedes are too expensive.


Rick R
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I continue to exchange emails with Mr Buch, and he continues to say things which I find puzzling. However, at this point in time I don't know if he might just be pulling my chain, so I will not pick on him TOO much more right now.


I will ask these questions, which should give you a hint:

Are there any TV's with built-in ATSC (DTV) tuners which will NOT display 1080i (or 720p), but ONLY 480i and 480p?

Does Toshiba now, or have they ever, sold a full HDTV with built-in ATSC tuner?


David
 

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"Are there any TV's with built-in ATSC (DTV) tuners which will NOT display 1080i (or 720p), but ONLY 480i and 480p? "

There have been some sold, but not very many. Broadcasters like to say there are a lot of them out there as a means of justifying their not broadcasting HDTV, but the reality is the number is quite small.



"Does Toshiba now, or have they ever, sold a full HDTV with built-in ATSC tuner? "

Yes they have in the past but I don't know about their current product line.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by haysdb
Does Toshiba now, or have they ever, sold a full HDTV with built-in ATSC tuner?
Yes, the Toshiba DW65X91, now discontinued.
 
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