Television Channel Sharing and Repacking

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  • #13135
    washnotore
    Participant

    Here is an article from “TV Technology” regarding channel sharing after the repack:

    http://www.tvtechnology.com/news/0002/channelsharing-multiple-stations-on-one-channel/276782

    The planning by the FCC and broadcasters has now begun. With the first deadline coming in March 29, 2016.

    Since there is already a TV duopoly in place, with Sinclair KATU-TV/KUNP-LP and Meredith KPTV-TV/KPDX-TV. We can assume these stations will be the first in Portland to repack. And any station above channel 37 will have to come down to a lower channel.

    #13145
    semoochie
    Participant

    I had completely ignored this topic because I thought they were talking about TV stations sharing the UHF band with broadband. I’m surprised I was so late to the game!

    #13160
    mwdxer1
    Participant

    I was talking to a couple CE’s just after the spectrum was sold off so the top station would be channel 50, now it is 37. Pretty soon there will be more spectrum left. In the World of sub channels. we are getting more OTA fare. Now is not the time for the TV station to lose spectrum space. The only other option, is for all TV stations to start streaming. What is a market like LA going to do?

    #13162
    Andy Brown
    Participant

    It would be foolish for all TV stations to “stream” because they are already (in almost all cases) paying to be on various cable systems (which is in essence a form of streaming). Not only that, but the number of networks that are streaming (in addition to being accessible through Google, Apple, Amazon, etc) far outnumbers the number that are not and after all, most popular programming on OTA stations is network sourced.

    It’s going to be a long while before the UHF stations in the 40’s clear out. This auction is just an attempt to begin the process, and stations have the option to participate in this auction process. Also, the rule making about white space is far from finalized. Also, The band of frequencies from 608 to 614 MHz is commonly known as TV Channel 37, but it has never been occupied by any over-the-air television station in North America. It is a quiet channel reserved for radioastronomy, and since July 2000 has also been allocated for medical telemetry equipment on a co-primary basis. The pristine condition of Channel 37 has gone unnoticed by almost everyone — including many broadcast professionals. But upon close examination, it is a conspicuous gap in an otherwise crowded, lucrative, and gradually shrinking broadcast band.

    On an internet page about the old DuMont network, Channel 37 is listed as once having been used by WGOV-TV, Valdosta, Georgia; however, FCC records do not indicate that “WGOV” has ever been assigned to a television station.

    And then there’s this mess:
    http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/news/2015/07/tv-tuner-stop-working/index.htm

    #13165
    mwdxer1
    Participant

    By what I have read, if a TV station wants the best 1080i, then they run one 1080i channel like KOIN does. They could run two 1080i channels and no subs, or two 720p HD’s and one 480i sub, and be okay, but there are limits. Portland or Seattle are in a better place than LA or Chicago, but in those cities nearly every channel has sub channels and they carry about everything out there available. I wonder if that is going away, or will there be enough room to carry it all? Even if it takes years, stations are going to be less apt to add sun channels, knowing they may be lost in coming years. Of course 2-6 is still available, if stations want to go back there. Not perfect but still available spectrum.
    I figured streaming everything is not feasible, but if it is a big market what to do? Maybe they can cram the channels right next to each other. Seattle has two next door 48 & 49, and that works out okay. If that can be done, then there may not be a problem. Some TV’s may have to have better tuners though. I am sure the TV stations are not happy with this. In the case of KPTV/KPDX or KATU/KUNP, they can share, but there will be less room for sub channels. Now that OTA is getting a lot more enjoyable, the FCC kills it.

    #13166
    boisebill
    Participant

    Co-located adjacent channels are no Problem. I been told there are some adjacent channels that are using a single transmitter that’s doing 12 MHz instead of just 6 MHz.

    The FCC is talking about giving wireless microphones a whole 6 MHz. Let’s see how that works in Las Vegas, New York City (Broadway) and the Superbowl.

    #13173
    mwdxer1
    Participant

    You must be totally correct with no interference from adjacent’s as I looked at LA, where there are dozens of OTA stations. There are locals there like on ch 23,24,26,27,28,29,etc. Not many gaps. However there are 20 stations in LA above 31, so they will need to move or become sub channels on other stations. That will be some undertaking. At least Portland does not have that much of a problem.

    #13174
    Andy Brown
    Participant

    mwdxr, you need to read the article I linked about ATSC 3.0.

    Almost everything you are “concerned” about becomes a non issue. With ATSC 3.0, stations can broadcast in 4k. With 3.0, modulation changes to OFDM instead of 8VSB for modulation, allowing for 28 MBps or more of bandwidth on a single 6-MHz channel. This is similar to what cable has been doing, doubling the 19.39 MHz sampling rate to 38 and sticking a multitude of sub channels and other information in the mix.

    Also, this auction is not mandatory and repacking the band is going to be a long and arduous process. There are going to be many big money interests that don’t want it to happen. Even the FCC is proposing a three year and three month time span for those stations that do enter the auction to complete their moves.

    You are wasting your time trying to parse this all out at this time. It took twenty years to go from NTSC to ATSC 1.0 so I wouldn’t be getting all concerned about any of this right now. By the time it gets implemented, it may not look anything like it does now.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Television_Systems_Committee_standards#ATSC_3.0

    #13194
    washnotore
    Participant

    This situation sounds like it will create more lawsuits than it creates goodwill among happy broadcast campers. After all there is up coming industry. That thinks OTA Broadcasting should be on the way out.

    At least there are several options for TV stations. So whatever happens, It’s going to be a mess. We’ll just have to wait and see what the outcome is.

    #13200
    mwdxer1
    Participant

    Andy,

    You are right. After re-reading the article, it does look like I am concerned for nothing. Will the TV set tuner handle this new form ATSC 3.0?
    My concern was that the many available programmers that operate on sub channels, TV stations would be less apt to add more with the proposed changes. But again it looks like I am over concerned. Thanks for clarifying.

    #13239
    cbaravelli
    Spectator

    By law, FCC must pay TV broadcasters big bucks to move. Sinclair – Seattle KUNS moves to channel 50 for $720,000. Another revenue stream.

    #13261
    Andy Brown
    Participant

    Will the TV set tuner handle this new form ATSC 3.0?

    Not in the current proposal. ATSC 3.0 will be a completely new standard and incompatible with current broadcast systems. Therefore, one of the challenges that the ATSC standards committee will face is providing enough improvements in performance, functionality, and efficiency to warrant a wide-scale implementation of a non-backwards-compatible system. The standards committee understands that point clearly and has outlined around 140 requirements for the new ATSC 3.0 standard to make the transition a compelling one.

    http://www.audioholics.com/hdtv-formats/atsc-3.0

    #16263
    washnotore
    Participant

    Just in time for the next broadcast industry group meeting in sin city.

    A new station is slated for Las Vegas soon. RabbittEars.info now shows a Test Station will operate on rf 45 with a virtual 45 display with a power of 1000kw. This station will operate with ATSC 3.0, so almost all of the local viewers will not see anything.

    The construction of this Test signal may be for the coming Spring 2016, National Association of Broadcasters Convention in Las Vegas. Not a lot of details are available. The Service will be provided by Sinclair (KATU/KUNP Owner). Who’s currently owns three stations there.

    Another ATSC 3.0 Test Station is slated to operate in Las Vegas on rf 18/ virtual 18 with just over 6 kw. This is the same rf and virtual used by KHMP-LD. At last year consumer electronics show. KHMP did the first broadcast of ATSC 3.0 multicasting.

    Again for this year. The stations is in the process of a re-birth. RabbittEars.info does not indicate the owner of the channel 18 Test Station.

    One of the things the broadcast industry would like to see. Is the use of MPEG-4 on the upcoming ATSC 3.0 format. Which means more sub channels and a lot of repacking of rf channels in the process.

    #16271
    Jbpdx
    Participant

    The future of television in the U.S. is over-the-air diginets. Cable TV is contracting, not growing. This will have to be kept in mind in all this.

    #16336
    washnotore
    Participant
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