will HDTV be free after the analog cutoff (1 Viewer)

fourbye99

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Feb 27, 2005
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I would like to know is ...Will HDTV be free on cable,or satellite,after the switch to
digital TV? Right,now you have to pay extra for it.Seems to me ,after the switch,you would have a choice,so you should not have to pay extra,but if you are paying for it I don't think cable,or satellite would want to give up the extra fee.
Just like to pose the question,if it hasn't been asked,yet.:confused: Sorry if this was talked about .I don't log in too often .
 
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mdonnelly

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Well, when you pay for satellite analog locals, the digital locals are thrown in for the same price. I'd say that when the analog locals terminate, you'll still be paying for digital.
 

sksatellite

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Sep 7, 2003
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Do you expected to pay for your local HDTV channels ?? No one that stupid to pay for something that is free unless the condition not allow to install your OTA antenna.
.
 

navychop

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The cut off in Feb 2009 will stop analog transmissions. Digital transmissions will continue. HD is just a subset of digital in general. All satellite signals today are digital. Dish just converts to digital the analog signals provided by some stations. After the transition, the stations will be providing digital signals to begin with. I gather many provide digital versions of their broadcast signal today. And most signals will remain 480 or SD, even after the transition.

Dish (& DirecTV) will almost certainly continue to charge extra for HD. After all, it takes up a lot more bandwidth than a standard (SD) digital signal. Premium service, premium price.
 

Bill R

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fourbye99 said:
Will HDTV be free on cable,or satellite,after the switch to
digital TV? Right,now you have to pay extra for it

What do you mean, "you have to pay extra for it"? If you subscribe to your local channels (both cable and satellite) your HD locals are included IF they are available from your provider. DISH is not yet providing HD locals in a lot of areas but they will be adding more DMAs in the next few months.

Cable systems have must carry agreements with MOST of the local stations and part of that agreement says that they must provide the HD channels (and sometimes the additional SD sub channels) unencrypted. In order to get those channels you need a TV (or STB) with a QAM tuner but in the future most TVs will have a QAM tuner (ALL TV must have a digital [ATSC] tuner in the future, the rule as to when depends on the set screen size; larger sets require them now and many are also including a QAM tuner). You do NOT need to subscribe to any digital package to get them (they are digital but unencrypted). In my area the local cable company has all the local HD channels available except one and they carry all the sub channels for the 7 HD local channels that they do carry. I get them all in my basic cable package that costs $13.25 a month (plus tax). The package includes 26 analog channels (locals, government, access, cable channels) and the HD channels. MOST cable companies do not advertise that because they want customers to rent a STB from them and subscribe to their digital tiers but if you call them and ask they must tell you what local HD channels are available to you at no additional cost.
 
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M Law

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Like any commodity, as the newness wears off and the product becomes commonplace, HD programming will replace SD and that is all you will get. It takes time. Pressure will increase on cable and satellite to offer more and more HD, and at less and less cost, as the telcos begin rolling out their product. Remember, competition is always good for prices and products.
 

dragon002

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Mar 7, 2005
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Bill R said:
What do you mean, "you have to pay extra for it"? If you subscribe to your local channels (both cable and satellite) your HD locals are included IF they are available from your provider. DISH is not yet providing HD locals in a lot of areas but they will be adding more DMAs in the next few months.

Cable systems have must carry agreements with MOST of the local stations and part of that agreement says that they must provide the HD channels (and sometimes the additional SD sub channels) unencrypted. In order to get those channels you need a TV (or STB) with a QAM tuner but in the future most TVs will have a QAM tuner (ALL TV must have a digital [ATSC] tuner in the future, the rule as to when depends on the set screen size; larger sets require them now and many are also including a QAM tuner). You do NOT need to subscribe to any digital package to get them (they are digital but unencrypted). In my area the local cable company has all the local HD channels available except one and they carry all the sub channels for the 7 HD local channels that they do carry. I get them all in my basic cable package that costs $13.25 a month (plus tax). The package includes 26 analog channels (locals, government, access, cable channels) and the HD channels. MOST cable companies do not advertise that because they want customers to rent a STB from them and subscribe to their digital tiers but if you call them and ask they must tell you what local HD channels are available to you at no additional cost.

bill, i think you are confusing digital with hd.
 

BigFella

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dragon002 said:
bill, i think you are confusing digital with hd.
Dragon - I receive my HD local networks as Bill does through a basic cable (Comcast) subscription. I don't subscribe to the digital tier. I have a LG LST-3410a set top DVR that has a QAM tuner built in (also ATSC and NTSC but I don't use them for OTA). I do receive some unencrypted digital stations such as "ABC News Now" but don't generally watch them.
 

dragon002

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big,

the point i was making , was, yes you recieve your local stations in digital, but not all local stations broadcast in hd, the only requirement is they broadcast digitally by 2009. there is no law that forces them to go HD.
 

BigFella

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Sep 29, 2003
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dragon002 said:
big,

the point i was making , was, yes you recieve your local stations in digital, but not all local stations broadcast in hd, the only requirement is they broadcast digitally by 2009. there is no law that forces them to go HD.
Gotcha:)
 

fourbye99

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Feb 27, 2005
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Hi fourbye99,here.I didn't want to start up something.I have cable.And I can only get Advance cable,or no cable.What I like is with basic cable I don't need cable boxes. (I can use the TV remotes,plus I have 6 TV's in 6 rooms)I do,if I go with digital channles,that includes HD.Which I pay more for,and I would have to pay extra for HD on satellite,also.
My thinking was all digital TV was going to be in HD,but sound like that is not the case.Looks like you will still have to pay extra for HD,except for network TV.
 

navychop

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"...HD programming will replace SD and that is all you will get. ..."

Don't we all wish.

The broadcaster can multicast up to 6 SD channels in the space of one HD channel. They must make decisions as to which business plan makes the most sense. Channel 66 in my area multicasts 6 sub channels and never sends out an HD signal. They can sell advertising on 6 channels. Lower rates, certainly, but with 6 channels they are likely coming out ahead. Other channels transmit 2 or 4 sub channels. Some programming just doesn't benefit much from HD. Not much point in upconverting I Love Lucy. Most preacher shows wouldn't be much different in HD. Lot's of foreign interest or niche programming may not support the costs of HD, but can pull in just enough audience to support an SD subchannel.

We may prefer HD, but that alone will not move broadcasters to HD only. They will follow the plan they believe most profitable. Digital will replace analog, but sadly, HD will not replace SD. Not in our lifetimes, possibly never.
 

M Law

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You have to think long term. Sure some of the low grade broadcast channels are going to cram as much into that digital stream as they can, but the reality is that the major networks (CBS, NBC, ABC) are headed rapidly to all HD, and as more and more HD sets are sold, the pressure will build and service providers will start using HD as the lure to beat their competitors. As that starts to happen, it turns into a price war, eventually leading to HD being the standard at no extra fee. It could happen sooner than we think.

Look at what has happened to phone service and their costs. Long distance in many instances now is free or so damned low in cost it might as well be free, and as technology and competition continues to provide alternatives, phone service will continue to spiral to lower and lower costs. That's just a fact.

Best thing many of us can do is support the telcos like Verizon who are now pushing to gain entrance into providing video service via fiber to the home. They have the bandwidth and want to compete with cable and satellite, so what better way than to give more HD and at a lower cost.

HD being all we will view in the future is not a wish, it's a fact.
 

navychop

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Ah, how I wish it were so.

The interviews I've seen with network execs, and their actions, indicate that prime time is moving to HD, not 24/7. Daytime economics, with the exception of a few very popular soaps, seems to push for multicasting. They will follow the business plan that they think is most profitable. And local network affiliated stations providing local programming aimed at local groups is a valid business plan.

Besides, "I Love Lucy" et al will never be (effectively) converted to HD, and we'll certainly continue to watch decades old programming, just as we do now. Jack Benny will be multicast. This is all hashed out in other threads.

Nothing is a fact until after it happens. The future is mere speculation.
 

bhelms

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navychop said:
"...HD programming will replace SD and that is all you will get. ..."

Don't we all wish.

The broadcaster can multicast up to 6 SD channels in the space of one HD channel. They must make decisions as to which business plan makes the most sense. Channel 66 in my area multicasts 6 sub channels and never sends out an HD signal. They can sell advertising on 6 channels. Lower rates, certainly, but with 6 channels they are likely coming out ahead. Other channels transmit 2 or 4 sub channels. Some programming just doesn't benefit much from HD. Not much point in upconverting I Love Lucy. Most preacher shows wouldn't be much different in HD. Lot's of foreign interest or niche programming may not support the costs of HD, but can pull in just enough audience to support an SD subchannel.

We may prefer HD, but that alone will not move broadcasters to HD only. They will follow the plan they believe most profitable. Digital will replace analog, but sadly, HD will not replace SD. Not in our lifetimes, possibly never.
Well-founded observations to be sure - the bottom line is always the "bottom line". My only comment would be that the local programmer selling ads on 6 SD subs still has to demonstrate that he has the audience to command his price for that advertising. Hopefully the balance will shift to HD being more profitable for broadcasters like them due to the increasing number of viewers with the capability and desire to watch HD whenever possible.

My TV viewing time is rather limited. With only a modicum of worthwhile HD programming available to me at present (including only one OTA channel), there's still a lot more than I have time to watch. And I don't have a DVR (yet) to increase my HD choices in the available time. My dilemma is deciding whether to watch programming I want to see in SD vs. something in HD in which I'm less interested, but that I will likely watch instead just for the PQ and 5.1 experience. (I'm still in my "honeymoon" phase with the new stuff!) If there are increasingly more viewers who react that way, the demand for SD programming that should be available in HD is in jeopardy...
 

navychop

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I sure hope you're right. But I keep reading that half the HDTV owners don't have, and don't realize they don't have, HD service. They don't even notice. And how many reports do we see where someone says "I don't see the difference." And there is a massive investment in SD cameras, editing and transmission gear.

Channel 66 near DC puts out 6 subchannels. One of them I actually watch once in a long while- old sitcoms, etc. Mostly, they seem to be selling "religious" programming of the trailer park variety. Another station multicasts 4 channels, and seems to be serving the international community. WETA puts out 4 during the day, serving kids and adults at the same time.

Niche markets will support some multicasting. Indifference to PQ and audio will likely keep SD alive and well in the digital age.

How many people are likely to want, or even be able, to fool with setting up a surround sound system and controlling it. I did, and just got a Harmony 880 remote so it's the only remote anyone need ever use. Simplified things. Most folks by far won't do that- TV is a box and a simple remote. Cable boxes confuse some. I suspect the company that sells an HDTV with plugs for 5 outlying speakers & a subwoofer, and a built in DVD player (or simple "plug DVD in here") will be onto something. That may help bring our hope for more HD closer to reality.
 

bhelms

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Ain't that the truth!

navychop said:
I sure hope you're right. But I keep reading that half the HDTV owners don't have, and don't realize they don't have, HD service. They don't even notice...
Incredible, but I can relate! My wife doesn't seem to appreciate the HD visual/audio difference (and SHE'S the one who recently had surgery on both eyes!) and the overall complexity of the TV+STB+5.1 system, etc., so the overall HD investment and experience is completely wasted on her. (Fortunately I had some of my own "mad money" to put towards my system.) For that reason I moved the HD system, including its 4 remotes, out to the greenhouse (where my hot tub is!) and I, exclusively, watch it there, in great comfort I might add! She's perfectly happy with the old 27" SD toob with 2" speakers out in the living room as long as her fav channels are there. Fewer remotes that way, too.
...Channel 66 near DC puts out 6 subchannels. One of them I actually watch once in a long while- old sitcoms, etc. Mostly, they seem to be selling "religious" programming of the trailer park variety. Another station multicasts 4 channels, and seems to be serving the international community. WETA puts out 4 during the day, serving kids and adults at the same time...
Wish I had your selection. In my area I get about 2.5 OTA channels (1 is actually HD, as I mentioned before), no cable option, etc.
...I did, and just got a Harmony 880 remote so it's the only remote anyone need ever use...
I could use one of those! Managed to dump all four of my aforesaid remotes into my aforesaid hot tub last weekend when I was "too comfortable", but that's a story for another thread... (They seem to all have survived after I spent about an hour shaking them out and blowing them with a hairdryer.)
...Simplified things. Most folks by far won't do that- TV is a box and a simple remote. Cable boxes confuse some...
Sounds like my 85+ y.o. mom - first thing I do each time I enter her condo is reset the clocks that are flashing "12:00"...
...I suspect the company that sells an HDTV with plugs for 5 outlying speakers & a subwoofer, and a built in DVD player (or simple "plug DVD in here") will be onto something. That may help bring our hope for more HD closer to reality.
I suspect we're less than a year away from exactly that! It will probably appear at Wal*Mart first. I'll wager a buck - any takers!

Have a great weekend, Navychop and all! I'm soon off to Miller Time and my HD comfort zone...!
 

dishcomm

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fourbye99 said:
I would like to know is ...Will HDTV be free on cable,or satellite,after the switch to
digital TV? Right,now you have to pay extra for it.Seems to me ,after the switch,you would have a choice,so you should not have to pay extra,but if you are paying for it I don't think cable,or satellite would want to give up the extra fee.
Just like to pose the question,if it hasn't been asked,yet.:confused: Sorry if this was talked about .I don't log in too often .
not try in got be a wise ass here..but..are you kidding?....When was the last time we saw anything reduced in price....
 

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