in-the-clear QAM survey

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by cwoody222, Sep 27, 2007.

What do you get for in-the-clear QAM channels?

  1. I don't get any locals in HD in-the-clear

    10 vote(s)
  2. I get locals in HD, they're labeled to match their real numbers like 2-1

    59 vote(s)
  3. I get locals in HD, they're labeled randomly like 88-2

    89 vote(s)
  4. I get locals in HD, they're labeled to match the cable box like 702

    16 vote(s)
  1. cwoody222

    cwoody222 Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 1999
    Buffalo, NY


    Poll to follow.

    Basically I'm asking if you get free, in-the-clear QAM stations from your cable company... what do you get? Just HD locals? More like ESPN HD or Discovery HD? And do the locals, if you get them, have the correct channel number assignments or are they just some random number?

    ie: if your NBC station is channel 2 does your QAM NBC-HD appear on your TiVo as 2-1 or as something completely random like 88-2 or something? or does it match your cable company's channel assignment for NBC-HD, like 702?

    Due to having too many poll choices please POST info about if you get more than just locals.
  2. cwoody222

    cwoody222 Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 1999
    Buffalo, NY
    I'll go first. I get all my locals and nothing else in HD. (two simulcast digital simulcast stations... TBS and E!)

    My locals are labeled:

    1-1 NBC
    1-1 PBS
    1-1 Fox
    1-2 CBS
    1-2 (is blank but I think it's supposed to be The CW but it's not in-the-clear for some reason)
    1-3 ABC

    They used to be in the 88-x and 89-x range but they moved a few months ago.
  3. sfhub

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    I think the poll is meant for configuration that don't use CableCARD. Once you use CableCARD, the channel #s will always match the cable channel #s.
  4. Jazhuis

    Jazhuis New Member

    Aug 30, 2006
    I can get my locals, both in SD and HD, over clear QAM. There is no indication that any of them have PSIP data passed over the wire, thus they are all in a QAM frequency block.

    I also get a number of other stations via clear QAM, most SD, but some HD as well.
  5. sfhub

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007


    My area has OTA channel #s for cable PSIP. There are some of the multi-cast SD channels which don't have PSIP, but all the major HD locals have PSIP.
  6. billyjoebob99

    billyjoebob99 Member

    Jan 13, 2007
    I get all local HD stations mapped to the OTA channel numbers (of course with no guide info). I also get all local channels, shopping channels, CSpans, ESPN, and a bunch of others in SD. These are mapped all over the place but they haven't moved in over a year. I also get to watch whatever my neighbors are watching on PPV. That of course is very hit and miss. Last but not least forty some odd music channels.
  7. smbaker

    smbaker Well-Known Member

    May 24, 2003
    Mine all show up at valid OTA channel numbers, and have been stable (no frequency changes) for the duration I've owned my HDTV, which is about a year.

    So, looking at the poll results today, approximately one third of the people would be able to use a no-brainer QAM-mapping mechanism that automatically mapped guide data to QAM channels that matched OTA numbers. This is something that Tivo should support at the very least.

    BTW, I just installed my second THD today, and ordered the cablecard installs for both of them even though I swore I wasn't going to give the cableco another dime. I just don't have much faith that Tivo is going to implement QAM mapping. I justified the cost by canceling one of my phone lines that I rarely use, so I can now give the cableco money that I used to give the phone company. Out of the pockets of one thief and into another. If QAM mapping does show up on the feature list, then bye-bye cablecards.
  8. JJ

    JJ TiVoPlantation Owner

    Jul 14, 2000
    Land of...
    some of the in the clear channels have PSIP data.
    ABC 2.1
    FOX 5.1
    NBC 11.1
    CBS 46.1
    The rest MyNetwork, PBS x2, CW, Weather+, TBS, and others are a 'hide and seek' proposition with repeated changes for no apparent reason other than to inconvienence those of us who refuse to have a cable box...
  9. sbourgeo

    sbourgeo Hepcat Daddio

    Nov 10, 2000
    New England
    Mine (Comcast):

    84-1 PBS
    84-2 CW
    86-1 ABC
    86-2 NBC
    87-1 FOX
    87-2 CBS
  10. aforkosh

    aforkosh Member

    Apr 20, 2003
    Oakland, CA
    I voted for random, but the situation in my area (Comcast--Oakland--SF Bay)is more complex. Over the air channels that have the same number on the cable system map fine (i.e. the HD for 2 is on 2.1, 5 on 5.1, etc.). Channels which are moved appear to have random assignments, as do cable only channels. For example, our NBC affiliate is OTA channel 11, which Comcast maps to channel 3; the HD version is at 116.1).
  11. minckster

    minckster New Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Manhattan NYC
    TWC-NYC has a nice pattern, which hasn't changed for a least a year (except for the addition of 93-1 and 93-2):

    qam 1-2 is ota 2-1 CBS-HD
    qam 1-4 is ota 4-1 NBC-HD
    qam 1-5 is ota 5-1 FOX-HD
    qam 1-7 is ota 7-1 ABC-HD
    qam 93-1 is ota 9-1 MyNet-HD
    qam 1-11 is ota 11-1 CW-HD
    qam 1-13 is ota 13-1 PBS-HD
    qam 93-2 is TNT-HD

    None have PSIP data. The other in-the-clear QAM channels are SD.
  12. cwoody222

    cwoody222 Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 1999
    Buffalo, NY
    Interesting that they put thought into it but didn't bother to put them in their right places!
  13. MickeS

    MickeS Active Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    I voted for how it used to be where I lived before, because I know how it worked there. :)

    I got the HD locals, plus a few other SD digital channels (shopping channels, Spanish language channels and local access) in the clear QAM, on xxx-xx style channel numbers.

    I THINK I get the locals in HD here too (TWC San Antonio).
  14. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2006
    Still early in the poll but as I suspected a lot of places don't have PSIP (or incomplete PSIP). In my case all of the digital simulcast channels have no PSIP at all and even all but 2 HD locals have incomplete PSIP (no channel # information). If you count all the music channels there are in excess of 100 unencrypted digital channels in my system, only 2 channels (FOXHD and ABCHD) map to their OTA channel numbers.
  15. sfhub

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    I think there is some confusion in the expectations. Only the digital locals that come from ATSC broadcast can reasonably expect PSIP channel mapping.

    The digital simulcast of analog channels did not come from ATSC digital. They are mpg encoded by your cable company, so if there is any PSIP information, the cable company would need to generate it themselves. Since there is no requirement for them to do this, it is unlikely they will do so on their own, though there could be exceptions.

    The channels you can reasonably expect to have PSIP channel mapping information are the HD locals like NBC, CBS, FOX, ABC, PBS, CW, MYTV.

    The SD locals that are ATSC-based will also have reasonable chance to have PSIP channel mapping, but it is easy to confuse ATSC-based SD local with digital simulcast SD so it is better to just concentrate on HD locals for less confusion.

    SD digital simulcast will very often have no PSIP info. There is very little chance (but not impossible) for digital music channels to have PSIP channel mapping. Would it be nice to have PSIP channel mapping for all channels? Absolutely. It is just that the current FCC regulations only require the PSIP channel mapping for ATSC-based digital channels being rebroadcast on cable, not cable originated digital channels or cable digital simulcast of analog channels.

    HD ATSC-based channels will more likely have PSIP channel mapping and the PSIP channel mapping presence will increase over time.
  16. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2006
    sfhub, I agree with what you are saying, but aside from the poll the OP also was asking to post about other non-HD local clear QAM channels which is why I posted. In my case only 2 HD locals have PSIP information that gets them mapped to OTA channel #s, so my poll answer was still the one getting most votes: get locals in HD, they're labeled randomly like 88-2
  17. HomieG

    HomieG Nowhere Man...

    Feb 17, 2003
    In-the-clear QAM here includes all the locals in HD & SD, plus The Weather Channel. Also get 40 channels of OnDemand. We can start a program on our main box/DVR and go upstairs and find it somewhere in those 40 channels. Surfing those OnDemand channels in the clear can also be fun!
  18. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2006
    Yeah it's funny in my system there are 80 unencrypted VOD channels which are actually named VOD1-80 on the Tivos, so it can be fun surfing through those channels occasionally. Of course at any point in time only a handful of them are active - more so during weekends than on weekdays.
  19. sfhub

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    I'm only trying to clarify expectations, not to push for one poll answer to be higher than the other.

    I would expect if digital simulcast and digital music channels are included in the expectations for PSIP channel mapping 95+% of the systems would get the random answer.

    The poll correctly uses "locals in HD" as the qualifier for choices. This maps most closely to the PSIP channel mapping we can expect with current FCC regulations. Introducing digital simulcast and digital music channels in the comments, as if we should currently expect PSIP channel mapping for them, will make the poll results more confusing because it introduces scenarios that are not encompassed in the poll choices. On the other hand, pointing out you also receive digital simulcast and digital music channels but PSIP channel mapping are not expected for these channels, so they don't affect your poll choice, would be less confusing.

    For example, there is no choice to say "locals in HD" have PSIP channel mapping, but digital simulcast does not. So if someone expected digital simulcast channels to have PSIP channel mappings, they might choose "random" but really according to the poll choice qualifier they should be choosing 2-1 or 702.

    On the other hand, if "locals in HD" was meant to encompass digital simulcast and/or digital music, then there are folks out there who are answering as if it meant HD locals like ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, PBS, CW.
  20. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

    Oct 17, 2003
    In Pittsburgh Comcast was providing PSIP and all locals mapped nicely to OTA equivalent. Two weeks ago they changed to a complete mis-mash of channel assignments, with channel numbers that include a 4-digit sub-channel (e.g. 75.2213). Numbers are all over the map.

    One of my TVs found them just fine. The other will only display 3-digit sub-channels and can't display half of them. They also have added 40 music channels to the in-the-clear QAM. And I also get all of my neighbors' VOD programs displayed on 12 different channels (I've got a neighbor really into porn).

    I have filed a complaint with my Local Franchise Authority and with the FCC (not about the porn, but about the lack of PSIP and the use of 4-digit sub-channels.).

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