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Actual VS Virtual Channel Assignment
This thread has 8 replies. Displaying all posts.
Post 1 made on Friday November 7, 2008 at 11:08
mikeuhf
Long Time Member
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Are they going to continue with virtual channel assignment after the analog shutdown? It seems to me that this practice is wasting valuable channel alocation. For example CITY-TV is occupying channel 53.1 (actual) and 57.1 (virtual). It is in fact transmitting on channel 53.1 but the digital receiver displays 57.1 As such another broadcaster cannont be assigned channel 57.1 eventhough the frequency is in fact vacant. In effect, each station is occupying two channels on the band and on my digital receiver. This seems wasteful, doesn't it?
Post 2 made on Friday November 7, 2008 at 11:17
Ernie Bornn-Gilman
Yes, That Ernie!
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I wish I could remember whom I was talking with to tell you if this was knowledge or speculation, but the idea was that they'd keep the virtual numbering. In most cases it will be the same number as the Frequency Assignment. Since several stations have multiple channels on the same frequency, the .1, .2 etc will still be needed.

In my market, Los Angeles, all the High Band VHF channels will revert to those original Frequency Assignments at transition. Many UHF channels will switch to their original Frequency Assignments for their digital stations at transition. That leaves 2, 4, and 5, which are CBS, NBC and a local, to figure out what to do.

I just can't imagine that NBC4 is going to suddenly become NBC53 and let it go at that. They have more than fifty years of branding as 4. The same goes for the other two stations, and 5 is even older than the other two.
We can't give you a good answer, or maybe any, without the make and model of everything.
"The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." -- G. “Bernie” Shaw
Post 3 made on Friday November 7, 2008 at 19:10
Daniel Tonks
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Might be interesting with those channels that are "swapping" assignments (ie. analog 29 goes digital 14, and analog 49 goes digital 29 - which is happening in Buffalo).
Post 4 made on Saturday November 8, 2008 at 00:35
douglee
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On November 7, 2008 at 19:10, Daniel Tonks said...
Might be interesting with those channels that are "swapping"
assignments (ie. analog 29 goes digital 14, and analog
49 goes digital 29 - which is happening in Buffalo).

51 is going to digital 23 and 67 is going to digital 7 too!

WNGS is now advertising on the air about going to channel 7 in February and bringing you more services. I wonder what and how many sub-channels they will have. It could be a lot if the main one remains low definition.
Post 5 made on Saturday November 8, 2008 at 02:51
Ernie Bornn-Gilman
Yes, That Ernie!
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I have no idea what those channels in your area were in analog days. Here in Los Angeles, the PBS analog channel was 28; the digital was different; at transition the digital will change frequency, but it's going to be on 28.

51 is going to digital 23 and 67 is going to digital 7 too!

From what I'm seeing in Los Angeles, this would mean that 23 was an analog channel; its digital equivalent, 23.1, was on Frequency Assignment 51, but after transition the digital channel will be on 23. And that 67 is now called 7.1. Is this what's happening, or are the stations going to entirely new Frequency assignments that they've never been associated with?
We can't give you a good answer, or maybe any, without the make and model of everything.
"The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." -- G. “Bernie” Shaw
Post 6 made on Saturday November 8, 2008 at 09:04
texasbrit
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On November 7, 2008 at 11:08, mikeuhf said...
Are they going to continue with virtual channel assignment
after the analog shutdown? It seems to me that this practice
is wasting valuable channel alocation. For example CITY-TV
is occupying channel 53.1 (actual) and 57.1 (virtual).
It is in fact transmitting on channel 53.1 but the digital
receiver displays 57.1 As such another broadcaster cannont
be assigned channel 57.1 eventhough the frequency is in
fact vacant. In effect, each station is occupying two
channels on the band and on my digital receiver. This
seems wasteful, doesn't it?

No, the station is not occupying two channels on the band. It is only occupying 53. If another station wants to broadcast on (real) channel 57 it would be able to do that, it is just that its virtual channel number would have to be something other than 57.1. It could even be 53.1 if no one else was using it as a virtual channel number. Every station will occupy one ATSC real channel, the fact that the virtual channel numbers are different is not an issue. Just because someone is using a particular virtual channel number does not make the same-numbered "real" channel unusable by someone else.
Post 7 made on Monday November 10, 2008 at 03:17
douglee
Long Time Member
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March 2006
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On November 8, 2008 at 02:51, Ernie Bornn-Gilman said...
I have no idea what those channels in your area were in
analog days. Here in Los Angeles, the PBS analog channel
was 28; the digital was different; at transition the digital
will change frequency, but it's going to be on 28.

From what I'm seeing in Los Angeles, this would mean that
23 was an analog channel; its digital equivalent, 23.1,
was on Frequency Assignment 51, but after transition the
digital channel will be on 23. And that 67 is now called
7.1. Is this what's happening, or are the stations going
to entirely new Frequency assignments that they've never
been associated with?

Sorry I was too vague for a non-local reader :-(
have a look at Daniel's map of the present channel allocations.
[Link: remotecentral.com]
It may help you understand this. Or just think of the Abbot and Costello who's on first routine :-)

7 analog is on digital 38 as 7-1. Digital is staying on 38 permanently.
67 analog is presently a sub-channel 7-2 on channel 38
In February, 67 analog is going to turn on their own channel 7 digital transmitter right after 7 analog shuts down. It is unknown if it will still be available on channel 38.
If the virtual channel allocations are not changed, we could end up with
7-1 on actual channel 38 and 67-1 or 7-2 on actual channel 7. These two stations are operated by the same company and will be transmitting from the same tower so likely any problems will be fixed rapidly.

23 analog is on 32 digital as 23-1. 51 analog is going to flash cut to 23 digital in February, leaving 51-1 or a second 23-1 on actual channel 23 and 23-1 on actual channel 32. These stations are separately owned and will not be on the same tower.
Confused yet? I think a lot of people and TV sets will be unless they switch to the actual channel numbers.

When Global 65-digital, 41-analog first went on the air testing, they were using a test generator putting out a virtual channel of 2-1. This disabled some people's reception of Buffalo channel 33, 2-1 paired with analog channel 2 because there were two stations identifying as virtual channel 2-1. Some receivers could deal with two channel 2-1s but others would get confused and not receive one or the other or maybe both. Global quickly changed their test generator in response to complaints.
OP | Post 8 made on Monday November 10, 2008 at 08:20
mikeuhf
Long Time Member
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September 2008
31
It seems to me that this 'virtual' channel numbering is creating more confusion than benefit. It's unnecessary. The TV stations should have been instructed to go with their new channel allocations and to get used to it. Furthermore, what ever happened to the CRTC (or FCC is US) requirement that all TV and radio stations identify their call letters and frequency every hour or 1/2 hour. None of them seem to do that any more, and if some of them do they are not identifying the channel that they are actually transmitting on.
Post 9 made on Monday November 10, 2008 at 12:37
donnyjaguar
Long Time Member
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January 2008
352
Digital channels identify their stations continuously in their data stream. No need to ID every half-hour. I think in Canada its every hour like the radio stations. This was done more to identify sources of interference in days of yore anyway. I say if a channel wants to market based on their old assignment it'll be just sour grapes is someone else is awarded their old frequency.
Donny Jaguar


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