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Historically, there have been a number of places in Greensboro (including the manager's office at WFMY) where reception for WDBJ7 was pretty good. Is anyone other than foxeng receiving the DATV signal on 18 around town?
 

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WGHP has been making some changes in our streaming and in our RF chain. We still have some more work to do next week, but I am asking if you see something on air that is not right, or you think something is not right on air, let me know and I will be happy to check it out. Myself and and a tech from the transmitter manufacturer spent 10 hours Thursday going through the entire streaming chain and did find some problems that are being addressed and I will be starting to go through the RF section later today into next week.


Any reports will helpful. Just post them here and I will be checking at least daily on this forum.


Thanks

Charles Layno

Transmitter Supervisor

WGHP/WGHP-DT
 

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In Winston-Salem, with an indoor antenna, I have not been able to get any signal. By that, I mean that in trying to lock onto a new channel on my Dish 6000, I get no reading at all. I am able to pick up the other Triad digital channels to varying degrees.
 

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I've had HDTV on cable (SHO and HBO) for a couple of months and it's great, but I wish they'd hurry up and start carrying the networks and PBS in HDTV as well. The Orlando Time Warner carries lots of network HDTV, as do other Time Warner cabled cities.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by compson
In Winston-Salem, with an indoor antenna, I have not been able to get any signal. By that, I mean that in trying to lock onto a new channel on my Dish 6000, I get no reading at all. I am able to pick up the other Triad digital channels to varying degrees.

I assume you must be referring to WGHP. At the present we are running at reduced power of 4200 watts (4.2 kW). There is no set date to increase power yet, so an indoor antenna, unfortunately will not pick us up unless you are at the tower. I am on the north side of Greensboro with a modest antenna setup, Channel Master 4228 and a small preamp on a 15 ft pole, yields good results. When the FCC set its standards for DTV, indoor rabbit ears were never considered, but an antenna located at 30 ft on the outside was used for all measurements.


We will have to make substantial modifications to increase power and we have been moving in that direction for several years and are continuing to do so, even now.


*** The following is my view and opinion and is not the view or opinion of my employer.***


I read in the forums people jumping up and down demanding stations be pulled because they are not at full power or haven't made it on air or because they only send up-converted signals.


The truth is, up until now, the FCC has not been very realistic in its view of what it takes to make the DTV transition a success. Only the broadcasters have been required to make this work, and it will take every player from the broadcasters to set manufactures to make this roll out a success. The current FCC sees this and is making strides to work with broadcasters and now is applying pressure on the other players as well. If you read the broadcast rags, the broadcasters applaud this and I think broadcasters would be more inclined to spend the extra if they knew that it all wasn't up to them, as it should be.


Had the FCC in 1995/96 come out with a complete DTV roll out plan that included the current broadcast timetable and mandated timetables for cable must carry, receiver conversion, and programming, we might be able to make the 2006 deadline, but the former FCC chairman walked around carrying a big stick demanding broadcasters do this and that and ignored the rest of the industry on this issue and was, IMHO, more inclined to criticize broadcasters than to help them. The current FCC chairman, who wants DTV, also understands the whole thing is so screwed up, it will take time to straighten out and get it going again, and he is trying to, by NOT carrying a big stick, but working with the broadcasters and addressing the other issues. He is getting more response now, than his predecessor did, but it is now 6 years down the road.


This DTV issue is a classic case of the government getting involved to force change when there was no real driving force. Would DTV have happened? Absolutely! Would it have been more orderly transition without the government? Yes. Would we have been further along in the transition had all the issues been addressed and not just the broadcast side? Yes.


It is ashamed that DTV holds so much promise and yet, it isn't happening, but I think the FCC sees its mistakes and it has sent a message to the effected industries, and they have received it. It will take some time to get DTV roll out back on track, because it is now derailed in a ditch and it is trying to get back up.


Right now the only people benefitting from DTV are the broadcast manufacturers and consumer manufacturers, because it costs money to convert whether you are a broadcaster or viewer. Until that scale is tipped by some factor (the FCC in this case), expect more of the same.


An analogy I have been using is this is 1946. In 1946, the FCC opened television to the masses. It was a rocky start, just like DTV. It was bleeding edge technology with few transmitters and fewer receivers. Stations came on sporadically and then left the air. Until the FCC made some hard and fast choices, TV floundered around until the early 50's, when it took off. The technology got better, and the industry got focused. DTV is in the same boat. In comparison, 2002 is DTV's 1946. The digital technology is still being proven and some is still vaporware, even today. I have heard others call DTV still a science project in the works, and it is. We the pupblic (me included) have gotten so use to turning on a device and it works first time, and DTV isn't there yet. As early adoptors, you are seeing a new technology develop before your eyes. DTV was only lab stuff 6 years ago and now it is in you home. A short time for R&D for an entire industry. Something that most people believed would never happen again. Remember you are the pioneers. So enjoy what little you receive right now. In years to come you can tell people how you SAW DTV develop. It will get better, but probably not as fast as we all would like it to.


The preceding has been my view and opinion. It is not the view or opinion of my employer.
 

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For the last two or three days I've been receiving a dandy signal strength from WXLV-DT (29), but no picture or sound. Anyone else having the same problem?
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Neely
For the last two or three days I've been receiving a dandy signal strength from WXLV-DT (29), but no picture or sound. Anyone else having the same problem?

I have been looking at their PSIP on a commerical DTV recevier and it is not right. I will give them a call tomorrow. At Least WUPN is better, but it's not right either.
 

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Yes, my 6000 will not lock on 29 as well.


Foxeng: Even though this is not really the place for this I just thought I would throw in my 2 cents on DTV. I'm not an engineer nor a tech freak. Just someone who has dabbled in first stereo and later home theater. As far DTV tech goes, I think it has been wonderful as far network OTA broadcasts are concerned. I'm fortunate to live in an area that allows me access to now 3(maybe 4 in the future) television markets through the use of DTV. My PQ from those stations that broadcast HD is outstanding and after the initial hardware investment of course free!


To me the biggest problem stems from the fact that DTV with the promise of better PQ and sound might help TV manufacturers sell more TV's but for cable and satellite operators, it eats up more bandwith thus restricting the number of channels which costs them money. Broadcasters are kinda stuck in the middle of this as they try to find the business model to make $ during this transition. Hopefully the FCC can sort this out and everybody can win. The technology is improving and I hope that some of the newer settop boxes and chips will solve some of the reception problems some of us are having. Keep the Faith!
 

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Could anyone in NC tell me if Time Warner in Goldsboro has any HD on there digial cable. If not would some one get Raleigh with a out side antenna.
 

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Accordingly to this link, HD stations are available through Time Warner in Goldsboro: http://www.twc-nc.com/line_ups/goldsboro.php


You would probably be OK with an antenna, though. You can easily pick up the analogue channels from Raleigh and Durham with rabbit ears. Raleigh's WRAL (CBS affiliate) is the leading station in the country for HD (even the local news is in HD), so I suspect they have a digital signal strong enough to be received in Goldsboro. The digital transmitter for the NBC affiliate (in case you like Jay Leno) is in Garner, but the station is actually based in Goldsboro, so I would hope you could get it there. (It's actually an NBC owned and operated station--based in Goldsboro. Hard to believe, I know. It's a long story.)


Good luck.
 

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Thanks, foxeng, for ringing their bell at WXLV-DT (29). Everything looks normal now.


I am amzed that a commercial TV station can transmit a signal for several days that cannot be decoded. Don't they monitor their own signals?


Thanks again for getting the problem fixed. Now how about working on their non-high definition problem?



By the way, what does PSIP mean?
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Neely
Thanks, foxeng, for ringing their bell at WXLV-DT (29). Everything looks normal now.


I am amzed that a commercial TV station can transmit a signal for several days that cannot be decoded. Don't they monitor their own signals?


Thanks again for getting the problem fixed. Now about about working on their non-high definition problem?

Their Engineer Gil Couch called me this afternoon and we had a nice conversation. They have had some problems but are working through them. I asked about the remapping to 45 and he said they are still playing with things and it is subject to change. Having gone through this, it isn't as easy as it looks. He is saying they have a receiver at the studio now and it is decoding both 29 and 33. I am still not decoding 33 at home or at the transmitter, but I think that is part of the things they are working though.


He said that network pass though would be the next thing they work on and I would suspect that might be 6 months to a year, it depends on when Sinclair does capital and what other capital needs they have. It all depends on how this recovery goes. This is not just a Sinclair thing, but the whole broadcast industry is going through the same thing. Stations are spending big bucks right now, when they should be saving money. It is a tough time right now in TV.

Quote:



By the way, what does PSIP mean?

PSIP - piece of shi....OH WAIT! Wrong acronym! (well closer to the truth actually!) Here is a blurb from the National Association of Broadcasters webpage on PSIP. After you read it you may begin to understand why some stations you get fine and others with super signals you get nothing:


"Program and System Information Protocol (PSIP) is data that is transmitted along with a station's DTV signal that tells DTV receivers important information about the station and what is being broadcast. The most important function of PSIP is to provide a method for DTV receivers to identify a DTV station and to determine how a receiver can tune to it. PSIP identifies both the DTV channel and the associated NTSC (analog) channel. It helps maintain the current channel branding because DTV receivers will electronically associate the two channels making it easy for viewers to tune to the DTV station even if they do not know the channel number.

In addition to identifying the channel number, PSIP tells the receiver whether multiple program channels are being broadcast and, if so, how to find them. It identifies whether the programs are closed captioned, conveys V-chip information, if data is associated with the program, and much more. If broadcasters do not include properly encoded PSIP data in their DTV signals, receivers may not correctly identify and tune to the station. Therefore, it is vital that all broadcasters understand PSIP and include the data in their DTV stations signals. PSIP is a mandatory Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) Standard."


That last part is SO IMPORTANT and from what I have been told, is about 90% of all DTV problems that are addressed right now. There is SO much data that has to be entered in CORRECTLY, or you get a BLANK SCREEN.


Stations who do not have guides are said to be using STATIC PSIP, about (70%) and those who do have guides are using DYNAMIC PSIP. Let me tell you, just getting STATIC PSIP going is bad enough and most are still wrestling with that before they get into the guide stuff. Now that is a dog! If one piece of data is not correct in the PSIP, it will cause some receivers to not decode, like the RCA DTC-100's or will have stations on the wrong virtual channels or will have the audios in the wrong place. The whole stream is one big multiplex fiesta of data and it all has to be mapped correctly or you will the picture of one stream and the audio of a different stream if you are not careful. It is probably a good thing that there are not many receivers out there, because station switchboards could take the load!
 

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Discussion Starter #34
Thanks for the HEADS-UP on WDBJ - I got them at 88 on my RCA DTC100, which is also the same SS as WFMY; but I do have to rotate the antenna. WXLV runs at a 94.


WXII is not transmitting PSIP, thus my RCA does not recognize the signal.


Still, no WGHP Signal, but I am going to bump my antenna up a few feet; hopefully, that will clear some nearby trees. PLUS, add a Pre-Amp.
 

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Well FOX8 DTV 8-1 (ch 35) is off the air again. We lost another power supply when we took a power dump on Saturday, 6/1. We hope to have it back up middle of the week.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by foxeng
Well FOX8 DTV 8-1 (ch 35) is off the air again. We lost another power supply when we took a power dump on Saturday, 6/1. We hope to have it back up middle of the week.

Finally FOX8 8-1 (35 DT) is back on again after fighting a primary power supply and power supply chassis. At the rate we are going, we will have the whole transmitter changed out!
 

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Did everyone go away for the summer?
 

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I'm here waiting to read some new skinny on the local DTV scene, like somebody telling me when I'll be able to receive FOX-35 in Reidsville.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Neely
I'm here waiting to read some new skinny on the local DTV scene, like somebody telling me when I'll be able to receive FOX-35 in Reidsville.

I wish I could give you an answer, but it hasn't come down yet. Reidsville is right on the 41dbu line so depending on your location in Reidsville, antenna type and height, and the noise figure on your preamp and the overall selectivity of your OTA receiver, you might get FOX. The antenna is at 900 ft on the current tower. I don't think there is any beam tilt on it, but I might be wrong, I don't remember without looking at the specs sheet. If there is any, it isn't much and the main lobe shoots toward Greensboro with lobes out from Burlington to Winston-Salem. The full city grade 48bdu covers all of High Point, Greensboro, and a good portion of Winston-Salem. Not much toward the south or due east or west, but by law all we have to cover is city of license, which is High Point, but we were able to use some equipment already in place that made more sense to mount the system on the main tower and not on the much lower microwave tower in High Point which would have severely limited our coverage area as some other stations around the country have done.


Believe me, every station in this market is either running reduced power and/or reduced hours because of money. The stations not on the air yet, WTWB, WGPX and WLXI, will be either reduced power and/or reduced hours due to money.


Through various ways, we have identified only 7 viewers outside of the broadcasting industry who have any capability to receive OTA DTV signals. Compare that to the almost 1 million viewers in our market, and it is a no brainer why all the stations are doing what they are doing. The operational costs of a full power UHF DTV transmitter is 10 times more than a VHF analog transmitter running the same power or less. The UHF stations are already used to the high power bills from their analog stations, but even they are not running full power on DTV.


It will get better. The stations running reduced power will have to increase before 2006 or lose protection of their allocated coverages. I suspect most will be full power before then because they will phase in components over several years and not have to bite the bullet all at one time and if the receiver manufactures do what they say are gong to do, there will be a lot of receivers out and that will make it financially worth while for stations to stay on longer. If you look at the history of TV, most stations came on at night and it was in the late 80's or 90's before just about all of the TV's went 24 hours. The average cost to get a bare bones, ie upconverted DTV signal at full power on the air is over $2.5 million. Most stations pay more than that and if they have to build a new tower, you can double that price. Everything in TV is expensive.


I understand your frustration. I too feel it. It was somewhat of a let down to find out that we would not be full power or be able to pass through more than 480I to start with, but to be totally honest with you, it is probably the best thing because this is totally new ground and new things are being found everyday. I was interviewed a few years ago by the N&R about DTV and was I looking forward to be the first on air. I said "NO! NO WAY! Let the other guys forge the trail and I will learn from their mistakes." I still think that is the best way to do it because right now we have a glitch in the encoder that is taking a software upgrade to fix and it has been over 6 years since DTV was unveiled and they still are working on it. I was at a DTV seminar 3 years ago and one of the channel 2 engineers who is a friend of mine was there and we talked about all the changes we had to go through to get DTV up and we decided that AM radio was the way to go!
The public has no idea what it takes to make a 1 and 0 fly through the air. I have told several people this and I believe it more everyday, I knew I didn't know much about DTV when I started. Now that I am doing it, I know I know NOTHING about it.


Hang in there, life does get better. In 6 months, it will be interesting to see what has changed. It may surprise you. I know it will me!
 

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"Through various ways, we have identified only 7 viewers outside of the broadcasting industry who have any capability to receive OTA DTV signals. Compare that to the almost 1 million viewers in our market, and it is a no brainer why all the stations are doing what they are doing."


I have stared at these words to try to figure out what you mean. You can't mean that there are only 7 people in the Triad who can pick up high def signals with an antenna. Many subscribers to Dish Network and Direct TV have that capability if they purchase an inexpensive antenna (and have the right receiver). With a visit to Radio Shack and an outlay of $17, I'm able to get high def in Winston-Salem from WXII and WFMY. Admittedly, I can't get high def from WGHP, both because FOX refuses to air high def to start with, and because your signal is so weak that it doesn't register at all. It should come as no surprise that people aren't rushing out to get antennas, when they can't even receive a High Point station in Winston-Salem. That reads more antagonistic than I mean it to, but I don't understand why you blame people for not buying something you're not selling.
 
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