Thursday, July 17, 2008

OTA HDTV in Bozeman

In case you didn't know, I am a bit of a home theater aficionado. While I am also a college student with no money, I have assembled a reasonable quality system using my computer as it's foundation. One way I introduce new new media into the system is through Over-The-Air (OTA) HDTV signals. The standard via which you recieve these signals is called ATSC.

As I am going to school at Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana, I unfortunately do not have the same sort of selection of HD channels that I would have back in Seattle. Fortunately though there is still some high-definition material on the airwaves. Below is a chart comparing each channel.

Bozeman HDTV Summary
NameTypeChannelProgramRes.ProgressiveDolby 5.1?Bitrate (Mb/s)

The bitrate readings were taken using TSReader Lite over a 5 minute period.

Important to me is the fact that only KTVM, our NBC affiliate, has audio in 5.1 Dolby. The rest have Dolby Surround compatible 2 channel downmixes. From what I have heard from the broadcast engineers, this is because of EBS regulations, and a lack of funds to purchase the required 5.1 Dolby encoder.

In terms of HD material, the KUSM-HD has beautiful HD material on the air 99% of the time. If I ever need to show someone how good HD can look, usually I'll pull them up.

None of the channels have local news in high definition, though anything that is on primetime usually is broadcast in HD.

You may be wondering where ABC & Fox are. The reason for their absense is the fact that they are not broadcasting digital signals yet, and are not expected to until the cutoff date. More worrying is the fact that even in Billings, where they are being broadcast digitally, neither one is in high definition. I intend to contact each of them and find out what their plans are for broadcasting digitally after the cutoff date.

Well there is a quick rundown of the different Over-The-Air digital options for Bozeman, Montana.

Edit: when I get a chance, I'll upload images of each channel during primetime.
Edit2: Woohoo! I got past Blogger's attempts to screw up my table.

1 comment:

Trip said...

Hey, would you be willing to help me with something? You use TSReader, and if you have some free time, I'd love your help with my own website... Thanks. =)