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Friday, April 11, 2008

Regarding digital TV

Al Geiersbach

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Re digital TV:

I bought 2 converters using government coupons a month ago.

Digital TV has brought a dramatic improvement to my television reception, which is very noisy and unpleasant on the analog channels in my eastside, rabbit-eared hovel. I'm sure the improvement is due
to improved propagation of the higher frequencies.

But there are some gripes:

First, the literature says the converters won't interfere with existing analog channels, but the fact is that they do interfere, and I have to disconnect the converters completely to avoid very snowy pictures on analog channels.

Second is the lack of readily available programming information on websites such as TITANTV, which I use because of its benign advertising.

Third is directed specifically against Channels 10 and 36, the public stations. They do not duplicate their analog transmissions on digital channels. For example, You can watch Channel 4 on analog, then switch to Channel 4 digital and see the same program. But if you try that on Channels 10 and 36 you get different programs. This is especially annoying given the need I mentioned above to disconnect the converter wiring in order to get decent analog signals.

While I'm talking about Channels 10 and 36, I have to say I was stunned to find out some time ago that they actually have paid employees. Given all the problems I've found there, e.g. not properly updating their time signals for daylight saving time, not showing correct program schedule information (even on their own website), etc., I assumed the stations were run by MATC students.

Finally, this wouldn't be complete without my gripe against almost all stations for spoiling pictures with their fruity "logos." Do they really think they're so important that they have to spoil movies in order to identify themselves?

Al Geiersbach
Milwaukee

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