High Def Forum
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Local HD Programming

jud
08-14-2005, 09:11 PM
My husband and I just purchased a new HDPanasonic 32" LCD from Circuit City along with a HDTivo receiver(HR10250)and the promotional HD package. We are new to satellite service and have been cable customers our entire T.V. watching life! So forgive me if I appear lost. We live in northern California (50 miles north of San Francisco) and I've been told by the DirectTV installer that currently we can only get the HD local channels with an OTA antenna. I've read on the blogs that a new Spaceway F1 satellite will be activated in 12 major cities this fall with San Francisco being one of the 12. This will bring local HD stations to the DirectTV customers in our area. My question is will I have the right equipment (HD Tivo) to receive these stations? I've been reading about MPEG4 and the need for a new receiver for this technology. Is this technology going to be used in the fall when the HD local channels will start being broadcast or is that happening much later on? Any comments would be greatly appreciated.

borromini
08-14-2005, 10:17 PM
I'm not sure if getting local HD channels is dependent on whether you have the MPEG4 equipment. I don't think they're linked, but I could be wrong. In the meantime, you should check out antennaweb.org and enter your zipcode to see if you can receive the SF networks thru an OTA antenna. That website will also tell you what type of antenna to purchase.

RSawdey
08-15-2005, 12:32 PM
Yes, they're linked... the local HD channels will be supplied with MPEG4 spot beams off the new satellites...

But, personally, I think it's a huge waste for most people... if you can pull your local HD off the air for free, why pay a monthly fee? Because you think antennas are uglier than dishes? For those with OTA reception problems it'll be great... for most it's foolish.

jud
08-17-2005, 09:52 AM
According to the information provided on antennaweb.org, I'm in a poor reception area and require the large OTA attenna that is power driven. There is no guarantee I would receive a good picture so I will wait for the new MPEG4 signal/receiver. If anyone from Santa Rosa, CA reads this thread and has any comments, please share your thoughts and comments. In the mean time, I have contacted Comcast and switched to the limited basic programming along with the local HD channels (2-32). This will require a HD converter box. The total cost per month to receive HD local stations is $24.17. Comcast is coming next week to switch the Digital receiver and hook me up to the HD feed. Has anyone else that switched over from cable to satellite integrated cable with satellite to get the HD local channels? I hope this can be done. According to Comcast, they said they have lots of customers who have done this. I guess Comcast will hook the cable into the Multiswitch that I have for DTV.

jpnuzzo
08-17-2005, 12:12 PM
My question is will I have the right equipment (HD Tivo) to receive these stations? I've been reading about MPEG4 and the need for a new receiver for this technology. Is this technology going to be used in the fall when the HD local channels will start being broadcast or is that happening much later on? Any comments would be greatly appreciated.

Your HD TiVO won't decode mpeg4 and won't receive from the Spaceway birds. Spaceway 2 launch is more than a month away, and it probably will require some shakedown time before it really gets used.

The Spaceway sats are supposed to carry HD locals, but rumor says that many other (national) channels will switch to mpeg4 format in the same time frame.

The good news is that most sites have rumors that D* will offer you a free upgrade to the mpeg4 equipment when your area requires it.

rockaway1836
08-17-2005, 12:21 PM
According to the information provided on antennaweb.org, I'm in a poor reception area and require the large OTA attenna that is power driven. There is no guarantee I would receive a good picture so I will wait for the new MPEG4 signal/receiver. If anyone from Santa Rosa, CA reads this thread and has any comments, please share your thoughts and comments. In the mean time, I have contacted Comcast and switched to the limited basic programming along with the local HD channels (2-32). This will require a HD converter box. The total cost per month to receive HD local stations is $24.17. Comcast is coming next week to switch the Digital receiver and hook me up to the HD feed. Has anyone else that switched over from cable to satellite integrated cable with satellite to get the HD local channels? I hope this can be done. According to Comcast, they said they have lots of customers who have done this. I guess Comcast will hook the cable into the Multiswitch that I have for DTV.
You can go to www.hdtvpub.com and see what people in your area are getting OTA. I see one report there of someone in the 95133 Zip that seems to have done well.

RSawdey
08-17-2005, 01:12 PM
Upgrading from 'basic analog + local HDs' to 'basic digital' will only cost you $15 per month & give you several more HD channels and lots of digital SDTV channels.

Your cable won't connect thru your sat equiptment, but in parallel - you'll change the input used on your TV to select between cable & sat.

mwkbear
08-17-2005, 01:55 PM
jud,

While it's true that you may have to wait awhile for the local San Francisco stations on satellite, if your main concern is to get the networks' HD programming, you should already be getting the west coast network feed for CBS, NBC, ABC, and Fox. This would be the Los Angeles stations. You can watch that until they have the locals ready for you.

jud
08-17-2005, 04:16 PM
I just got off the phone with DTV HD Department and they put through waivers to the local networks for me. Once the waivers are approved, they will switch on the programming for me. They said the waivers can go through within 7 days or up to 45 days. I was told the majority are approved. I will be getting the westcoast feed out of Los Angeles. I'm thinking now I will drop my cable service. Thanks for sharing helpful information.

mrm64
08-17-2005, 05:12 PM
You shouldn't have any problem with the wavier. I live in Georgia and I get the HD feed from LA.

shellback
08-17-2005, 11:40 PM
Hey MRM64, What is your ZIP? How is it you are getting LA instead of NY?

hdtvsalesman
08-18-2005, 09:42 AM
I have both the NYC feeds and the LA feeds for both fox and cbs. All that is going to be changing to where you can only can the feed your located in. i.e. georgia east coast feed but no west coast feed. Supposed to start 8/28 I believe. Hope this helps.

jud
08-18-2005, 01:55 PM
I was wondering what the average time is to get the waivers approved from ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX? In the meantime, I'm having Comcast come to my house in about a week to install the HD Converter box so I can get the local HD broadcasts. Will I be able to use my DirectTV HDTivo when switching to the HD cable local programs? I hope I will be able to integrate the local HD cable programs from Comcast with my HDTivo. Is there anyone who knows the answers? Thanks

mrm64
08-19-2005, 11:11 AM
My zip is 30101. I have been receiving the LA and NY feeds for several years, even before HD. I really enjoy the flexibility of having the west cost feed because if I miss a primetime show I can catch it on west coast feed. But I am about to loose my west coast feed. Directv sent a letter stating that the government had passed a new regulatory law and as of August 25 they could no longer provide feeds from outside my timezone. Maybe somehow this isn't true or I could possiblly be grandfathered in but I doubt it. It was good while it lasted.

mrm64
08-19-2005, 11:15 AM
When I applied for the wavier back in the 90's it took less than a week. I have heard that now it can take from 7-45 days.

spiderweber
08-19-2005, 11:27 AM
mrm, I'm not familiar with this waiver. What is it? Does it have to do with HD locals?

mrm64
08-19-2005, 12:12 PM
The wavier we are referring to is for people who can't receive a strong enough signal from an OTA antenna. You file a wavier with your TV subscriber and they wait to hear from each of the broadcast network and if approved you are then able to receive the broadcast networks over your satellite dish. And yes it is for SD and HD.