Add Phyiscal Channel to OTA scan

With channels starting to move around, because of ATSC 3.0, it would be nice to know what the physical channel is, in addition the the digital channel, for stations. Especially, when the station shows up multiple times. I have a situation where a particular channel, a string version and weak version is showing up, and it is difficult to select the stronger channel, without know the physical channel.

Today, in Denver, KNGH, with KWGN, KDVR and KUSA are setting up an ATSC 3.0 channel. KMGH plans to broadcast on two frequencies, plus the ATSC 3.0 frequency. This should be finalized by late this afternoon, but I will still have two KMGH channels to choose from, and it is guess work to determine which is the stronger of the two.

As for Tablo not supporting ATSC 3.0; they may want to reconsider. Between Sinclair, Nextstar, Scripps and Tronc ATSC 3.0 stations are going to pop up faster than anticipated. Denver now has two (the full power one starting today), and a low power one which has been on the sir for the past three months.

ATSC 3.0 is a radically different standard. Not something you can “just flip a switch” on. Different tuner hardware. It’s still my belief that ATSC 3.0 could be the “death” of today styled DVR markets.

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You would need to buy a new Tablo unit to support 3.0.

Yes, I understand that. Right now Homerun provides ATSC 3.0 tuners in their product.

I do not think the Tablo folks expected an aggressive roll out that is starting to occur with ATSC 3.0.

By the end of today, Denver will have ABC, NBC, CW and FOX running on an ATSC 1.0 and ATSC 3.0 signal. Salt Lake City Phoenix and Las Vegas, have something similar.

Regardless, it still will be see too see the physical channel in the scans. By the way, Rabbit Ears, which is usually up to date, is in catch up mode with the ATSC 3.0 conversion, because the applications are being sent in a far shorter tie frame, than the normal application process. They are license modifications, no full fledged construction permit requests.

I agree that knowing the actual channel number would be helpful. I’ve asked for this in the past because I have the same situation near Seattle. All the majors started broadcasting Nextgen here also but I haven’t noticed any channels swapping because of it.

What you are seeing might be part of the repack but it isn’t really an ATSC 3.0 issue if I understand correctly. You’re probably just seeing the results of a “translator” which is just a second ATSC 1.0 transmission on a second frequency. There will be ATSC 3.0 translators but the Tablo can’t see them as mentioned. It’s unlikely a firmware update could allow out current Tablo hardware to ever use ATSC 3.0.

It’s likely safe to assume The Tablo is scanning from the bottom of the spectrum to the top. If a channel shows up twice then the second listing is probably on the higher frequency. You can likely look up your actual TV frequencies in your area to match them.

Usually the channels signal level would have shown up by number of bars during a scan on the Tablo.

Personally I use a Roku TV to determine the exact strength of each signal. I even wrote a command line script to output in into a text file so I could track it.

I’ll look into Homerun supporting ATSC 3.0 but I’m surprised they have already. Very interesting!

Actually, after do some digging, in Rabbit Ears, it seems that KMGH (Denver 7.1) has added KCDO/KSBS to carry their 720p signal. The second KMGH signal (after watching the Tablo scan a few times, was showing up between RF15 and Rf20 (KSBSs is on RF19). A few months back Scripps bought KCDO/KSBS. Now, it seems the purchase was to expand KMGH’s signal all the way to Nebraska, from Denver. KSBS is alow power station repeating KCDOs signal KCDOs tower is in Fort Morgan, Colorado, with a translator in Scotts Bluff, Nebraska.

The FCC has a requirement to broadcast on ATSC 1.0 for a minimum of one year after the station starts broadcasting ATSC 3.0. Many stations are planning to partner with each other(share transmitters) to meet that requirement but at the same time reduce costs. Perhaps in your area they just did an old fashioned buyout instead.

They don’t have to broadcast every channel they provide in ATSC 1.0 for that one year minimum. I believe it just applied to their main channel.

Even more so why Table should provide the physical channel in the channel list display. It is not hard to add one field to and HTML table. They have the data, during the scan, you see it when they are scanning through the channels in the upper right. This is not web programming rocket science.

First we’ll see all new TVs on the market gravitate to ATSC 3.0 (this could be 2+ years off btw). Then after about 5 years after that (so, we’re at 7+ years), I’d look for meaningful ATSC 1.0 drops. Just my opinion, but I think I’m speaking with reasonable expectation.

Have to remember, this one is not a gov’t mandate like the last change.

It would be very confusing to the average person. Very few of us know the channel number is just branding these days.

@cjcox I expect it to take a while as well. My point was primarily about the reasoning behind stations partnering with each other and simulcasting in certain areas. Presumably the OP lives in one of those.

I happen to be near one of the early markets and they just got there first five ATSC 3.0 channels a couple weeks ago. Fingers crossed I’m close enough to pick them up. I only just barely get their 1.0 counterparts. It might soon be time to upgrade my antenna, tuner, and amplifier so I can better take advantage of that market although to be honest it probably isn’t worth the trouble.

The amplifier I am looking at supports a dual antenna input and supposedly has some very good filters in it “tuned for the repack” although the quoted part may be marketing hype. My current antenna is… diminutive to put it nicely and not ideal for VHF stations. I would like to point two beefier antennas toward two different markets.

• For five years, require the programming aired on the ATSC 1.0 simulcast channel to be “substantially similar” to the programming aired on the ATSC 3.0 channel. This means that the programming must be the same, except for programming features that are based on the enhanced capabilities of ATSC 3.0, advertisements, and promotions for upcoming programs.

Since it’s unlikely tablo with add confusing information such as RF channel info, you can find it with a few clicks - https://www.fcc.gov/media/engineering/dtvmaps from your ZIP code. Pretty much every “antenna” site looks up it’s information from the source.

But RF channel info can help with antenna aiming when there are multiple of the same virtual channel.

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Fine, but if my Samsung TV can provides me both the Digital and Physical channel, when I do a scan, so should Tablo. Tablo will come out with an ATSC 3.0/ATSC 1.0 hybrid eventually, but it is looking like more soon than later.

Let’s face it if you just Bought a TV, without an ATSC 3.0 tuner, you are not going to turn around in 1 - 5 years to buy another TV, juts to get an ATSC 3.0 tuner. This is not like going from Analog to Digital.

Right now, there are very few options to add a USB or HDMI external tuner, let alone one that is well above $50 which was the price Analog tv Digital converters were going for over a decade ago.

Thanks for the correction and the official wording!

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Agreed. In a few weeks, I will have KMGH (Digital 7), showing up on as many as five channels (4 ATSC 1.0 and one ATSC 3.0). Only one of these three will have the best signal, but all you have to go by are three channels showing KMGH on 7.1. But, it is on RF7, RF19, RF23, and RF30). It is ATSC 3.0 on RF34. RF7 is the worse of the three signals I can receive. RF30 will be the best (when they start up the transmitter 5 miles from her), RF19 in between. FTY, I can receive RF23 rarely, when the weather is just right.

As stations move around to make space fro ATSC 3.0, Moved channels will do what KMGH is doing, utilizing low power stations, or even a distant station, to carry their ATSC 1.0 signal.

Thus, this justified the need to see the physical channel in the channel list.

Did you fill out your survey from Tablo? They are pretty good at listening to customers although I believe their list of todos is long.

I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if they were testing one right now.

I’m looking if you see any solutions. I only see one consumer product that definitely works in North America so far. As mentioned above I have five ATSC 3.0 channels that should be in range!

Hopefully whatever ATSC 3.0 you think Nuvyyo is secretly testing is having better luck then the one consumer product that definitely works in North America.

Are you personally using that other product and not having a great time or just heard some bad reports?

EDIT: I’m checking out Reddit and their forums. I see there may be some issues.

My location has a number of stations from the major station owners involved in the ATSC 3.0 rollout. We were suppose to have it fire up now.

So I almost jumped into the kick starter program - I didn’t. So I’ve been watching the forum for a number of months. Many kick starters seemed to no idea that they needed ac-4. Also due to ATSC 3.0 optionally using HMTL for add-on features some devices don’t support HTML in the data flow.

Also it would appear that a number of stations didn’t apply for a proof of concept license yet the their broadcast may not have all the require fields filled in properly.

Posts in the forum have fallen way off so why - who knows but I don’t think it’s because all the issues have cleared up.