Re: Channel assignments for DTV in the VHF bands
- From: Alan F <afiggatt1@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Fri, 01 Feb 2008 04:12:52 GMT
The purpose of the digital TV conversion is to free up UHF 52 to 69.
The final TV channel range is to be 2 to 51 or VHF 2 to 13, UHF 14 to
51. The breakdown for full power stations after the analog shutdown for
their final digital channel assignments is:
low VHF 2 to 6: 37 stations
upper VHF 7 to 13: 450 stations
UHF 14 to 51: 1324 stations
These numbers do not include the thousands of Class A, low power, and
translator stations which will also occupy these channels. But as you
can see, there will be only 37 stations on low VHF with 3 to 5 meter
wavelengths which drives the standard 110" width for VHF antennas. Most
of these low VHF stations in more rural areas. However, as wbertram
noted, WPVI-DT ABC 6 in Philadelphia will be on VHF 6 and not at very
high power either, so this will be a major consideration to anyone
picking out an antenna for the Philly area. Should I post a complete
list of the 37 low VHF stations if anyone is interested?
The big deal is that 661 stations will be changing their digital
channel before, on, or not long after February 17, 2009. Some 515 will
be switching to their current analog channel, the rest to another
The good news is that in many cities, all stations will be on upper
VHF and UHF. Many larger UHF antennas can do ok for upper VHF. Winegard
has recently introduced a line of upper VHF and UHF antennas that are
36" wide because they stop at VHF 7. These will be useful in many areas.
For anyone who wants to see the final digital channels, Falcon_77 at
avsforum.com has assembled an invaluable Excel file listing all stations
in the US by DMA with their current analog, digital, and final digital
for the link.
WPVI Philadelphia, the local ABC outlet, is one of those stations which will be broadcasting digital on their original analog channel, channel 6. The local PBS station will also be digital on channel 12.
There is an article on DSL Reports which analyzes the situation, and concludes that there is simply no Hi VHF or UHF channel available on which a high powered station like WPVI would not interfere with another station already assigned to that channel. It is a miserable situation for Philly viewers. It is possible that WPVI could buy out one of the smaller stations and obtain a UHF channel slot that way. But, to date no reference to such a solution, or any solution, has been seen, and WPVI appears to be happy with that channel assignment.
Ray K wrote:Some digital channels are in the VHF bands, thus requiring a much larger rooftop antenna, especially if they are in the low VHF band, than if they were in the UHF band. Are these VHF channels just interim assignments, to be changed perhaps after 2/17/09? If not, why will some remain in the VHF band?
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