Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,579 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
CITY-DT (Toronto) began broadcasting in January 2003 and went full-time in March 2003. Eight years of OTA in Canada, and the transition is not, and may never be complete. At the time, many people were salivating about the opportunities that were coming down the pipe - incredible PQ, integrated guide data, multicasting.

Thinking about this in hindsight, what have been the biggest milestones and the biggest mistakes? What would you have wished to seen done differently? What can be done to make OTA DTV in Canada better going forward? What are going to be the biggest hurdles?

Personally, I think the issue that disrupts our viewing pleasure the most, is the lack of the gov. requirement for full (e.g. at least 3 days) and proper PSIP guide data. I think a lot of people are used to an on screen guide, and this is a detractor considering the technology is already in place.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,410 Posts
CITY's OTA coverage contour area is a joke.

CITY TV via OTA is a joke! Why be concerned about PSIP guide data when they have no interest in providing a wide broadcast contour area. The future of OTA is being 'smothered-within-the-politics' in Canada to force viewers to pay for cable/sat services.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,074 Posts
I can receive CITY in Kitchener just fine...remarkable considering it's current ERP. And CITY isn't the only pre-transition digital station with a laughable ERP.

Progress has been slow, no doubt. But progress is being made nonetheless. And for that, we should be happy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,623 Posts
I think the biggest hurdle is obvious - the ownership situation of terrestrial television channels in Canada. None are owned by what I might call an old stock radio wave broadcaster. In one corner we have BDUs who'd love to kill ota. In the other corner there are public broadcasters who are managed by people with no background in technology and probably never see their engineering staff face-to-face. They also see ota as an expense item to be minimized.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,074 Posts
I don't necessarily buy into the argument that BDU's are set to try and kill antenna television.

CITY TV is owned by Rogers--a large BDU, perhaps the largest--and yet CITY was one of the first to offer digital OTA service.

And Shaw Media has recently pledged their support of broadcast TV and the digital transition...particularly with their newly acquired assets from Canwest, namely Global.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
214 Posts
They've been very good at converting the global stations to digital, so it seems they are for the most part supportive of it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,092 Posts
I have not received OTA signals since I left the UK in 1975 so maybe I shouldn't join the discussion. ( According to TVFOOL, in my location I could only receive about three channels of anything without a tower)

Firstly. Canada should have synchronised the digital conversion with the USA and gone over on the same day.
Secondly. The CRTC should be treating the regulation of OTA DTV as it has been ( until recently) treating the internet...loosely You want sub channels...go ahead. You want to add new services, I'm thinking of the "speciality channels" here, as encrypted or not sub channels... go ahead. I.e. not much regulation until OTA DTV was established.
You want some more power to increase the coverage area... go ahead within reason.
The conversion imho should be total. No analog left at all. If you have to give all the little old ladies with rabbit ears a converter and a new antenna...why not we are a rich country and could afford a few million boxes.


my 2cents
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,950 Posts
Rogers didn't own City-TV when it first went digital.
Yeah I think that was back in the Moses Znaimer days, when City-TV was actually cutting edge and pushing the envelope both in terms of content and technology.

My first taste of digital TV was back around 2006 when I bought a small Sharp standard def LCD not really knowing that it had an ATSC tuner until many weeks after. I didn't have a proper antenna so I just hooked it to one of my amateur radio aerials. I figured hey, it's "metal in the air" so it should catch something.

I was blown away by the picture quality (I think it was CBC) and was an immediate convert. :)
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,074 Posts
Rogers didn't own City-TV when it first went digital.
True. But they've expanded CITY to digital in various cities under their ownership.

BDU ownership of local conventional broadcasts stations appears to offer up conflicting priorities. However, the reality is that BDU's are essentially the only entities interested in broadcasting that have the cash to make them work properly. Especially these days with digital coming and the pressure to upgrade facilities to high definition.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,074 Posts
They've been very good at converting the global stations to digital, so it seems they are for the most part supportive of it.
Agreed. Winnipeg got it's first digital station thanks to Global. This, as well as the ugprade to HD news, likely wouldn't have happened had Canwest maintained ownership.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,623 Posts
Some of you guys seem to forget that BDU-owned channel OTA enthusiam is all about being able to simsub on cable. In fact, I'd say most of their stations owe their existence to simsubbing.

Think about it from a businessman's point of view - why would you want to give something away for free in one hand when you charge subscription fees for it from the other hand.

This "support" is just a smoke-and-mirrors show.

... back in the Moses Znaimer days, when City-TV was actually cutting edge and pushing the envelope both in terms of content and technology
Yup, MZ is a prime example of what I was calling "an old stock radio wave broadcaster". To me, he seemed more of a "what's possible" kind of guy rather than "how do I make a buck" guy that dominate today.

Rogers didn't own City-TV when it first went digital.
True, and at that time it had the best PSIP data in our area. Once the station operation went under Rogers control, we got the "CITY Event 123" crap and incorrect time. :mad:
 

·
OTA Forum Moderator
Joined
·
24,867 Posts
99gecko said:
What would you have wished to seen done differently?
I would have wished that by 2005 (at the latest) the federal minister(s) in charge of Industry Canada and the CRTC had spelled out a clear, mandatory transition plan for every OTA station and repeater in Canada, including fixed target dates set in 2010 with no opt-out provisions for the broadcasters.

EDIT: oh and also I would have wished that full, proper PSIP implementation would have been made mandatory and regulated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
638 Posts
It’s been a well kept secret for all that time. More Canadians know about US DTV!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,410 Posts
My peeve is the lack of education and regulation on equipment marketing: The public is being duped by the lack of effort coming from the Canadian authority on marketing of soon to be obsolete TVs.

Only six shopping months left before the Canadian analog to digital transition and consumers that are shopping for a new TV have no idea that they may be buying something with an obsolete tuner. No Canadian regulation to protect consumers! That's like allowing The Source to sell FM radios that were built for use in a foreign country.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top