Clear in the Air < Broadcast

Brian Mahony continues his Over the Top (OTT) experiment and tested out his OTA antenna, only to discover:

To my disappointment, none of the local channels were received in high definition, which makes me ask if I may indeed need to replace my old attic antenna with one able to receive HD broadcasts. I had thought that “digital was digital” and if my antenna could receive digital OTA channels than it should be able to receive digital HD channels. Some more trouble-shooting here to figure this out. I tried a new channel scan, but perhaps the HD channels are “hiding” at some RF x.y channel that requires the use of a decimal? Stay tuned.

OTT Video Adventures Part 3: Over the Air Channels – Trender Research™

They are indeed hiding.  One of the prominent benefits of the Digital Transition was the creation of digital sub channels, allowing stations to broadcast various different programming each on their own channel, in the same space they had before for only one channel.  Common implementations of this are weather and traffic specific  sub channels.  Here in NYC there is also a 24 hour local news sub channel.

View more news videos at:

The standard definition or DTV station remains the legacy channel number with no suffix.  From an engineer’s perspective (read: geek) the decimals make sense.  To some TV’s they may not.  Some HDTV’s use a dash (-) instead of the decimal, but the important thing is that you tune in the sub channels, and especially the HD version of the OTA broadcast.  Happy viewing, Brian.


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