With Comcast’s acquisition of Adelphia, changes are afoot. In a press release today, CBS-19 (and ABC-16, and Fox-27) announced that they’ve managed to snag channels 2, 3, 6, and 9 for their channels. Presumably NBC-29 will remain at 4, the position they’ve long occupied on Adelphia. The shuffle is slated to take place on December 28. And it seems the rumors are true: Comcast will be offering high definition video, with ABC-16, CBS-19 and Fox-27’s HD commencing “within 90 days,” station GM Jim McCabe wrote in an e-mail this morning.
29 thoughts on “Gray TV Goes HD, Gets New Channels”
Despite the shiny new HD, Comcast has already provided customer service that makes Sprint’s look good. DirecTV, here we come.
I am in the same boat and am wondering about the merits of DirecTV versus Dish. Any thoughts, anyone?
A year ago now I was researching the two, as a Christmas present for my wife. The enormous difference is that Dish offers local channels, DirecTV doesn’t. In fact, you have to pay $1.50/apiece for any channel offered locally (ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, PBS) in order to get them out of L.A. or NYC.* That made it a sort of a no-brainer. Dish is also cheaper.
That said, we had to go with DirecTV. Dish Network’s satellite is at a lower angle, and we have a mountain in the way (to the south). DirectTV’s is also to the south, logically enough, but it’s higher in the sky. So we went with that.
* Unless you cheat.
DirecTV doesn’t offer local channels? I think this is largely a myth that is still arond.
I have a directv install and had I a clear line-of-sight (I’m on a wooded lot), I could get the local channels. I wanted NFL Sunday Ticket badly enough that I went with the DirecTV option anyway, and said bye-bye to the local channels. I won’t miss them until 24 starts.
From the DirecTV site, under packages, Total Choice package ($44.99/month):
Over 155 quality channels of movies, sports, family and music programming, all at one low price. Your local channels are even included.
That seems to be directly at odds with what you stated.
that advert for directv’s service is mis-leading for one fact alone. they assume that you live in a locality in which the local channels are provided for, via directv. such as DC or NYC or ATL or Charlotte. otherwise the decision to offer local channels, is then left up to directv and local affiliates to squabble about for years…
had directv, couldn’t get local. if my tv was HD, i could have gotten an off-air antenna, but i don’t so i didn’t/can’t get local. the only way to go IMO is Dish. compared the directv package price to my dish price, all locals included, and showtime (not an introductory deal) on top of the exact same package i had with directv and it was $2 difference. came with free install and a DVR for two tv’s.
the choice is clear, dish for a few more years at least.
DISH has a better program, higher customer service ratings and our local channels. Plus they have twice as many HD channels as direct. Comcast will be starting off with 12 HD channels with more added throughout the year.
direct is in trouble – nationally their numbers are down and are on the selling block. Without their NFL package (if you must have it) they offer little of value.
Comcast will be a great addition to our community!
Does this mean that we’re going to lose FOX 5 out of DC, since that’s on channel 9?
I’m surprised I can apparently get local out in Palmyra with DirecTV and people in the city can’t? That doesn’t make a lot of sense.
Of course, I have a cable modem out there, and cable modem isn’t an option for our office on the Downtown Mall .. I find it hard to believe that Charlottesville is behind Palmyra of all places in terms of modern technology.
cbs6 and abc8 are leaving altogether. nbc12 is staying.
fox5 out of dc is moving to either channel 15,16, or 22.
I have DirecTV right now. They offer no local channels in the area. They’re frustrated by that, too. It’s all a matter of the franchising agreements between national stations, local broadcasters and DirecTV. The installer who came out and set it up last year said something about some bad blood between DirecTV, the FCC, and a blackout period of some number of years until DirecTV will be allowed to broadcast local stations in the Charlottesville area.
Hrmm. I guess I better make some calls to see if they were wrong about me getting local channels out in Palmyra. Might save me some tree-chopping.
If you like the NFL you get DirecTV.
Now..as for the other story about local stations going HD…hily muther focking chrost on a sidecar. I’ll believe that when I see it.
So instead of Outskirts blogging about HDTV, jogging, and smoke free restaurants, he’ll soon just be blogging about jogging and smoke free restaurants? Sweet!
I’ll be able to blog about the poor quality of the HD. Even WRIC continues to have problems…and that is in Richmond (not this puny little village).
Don’t forget about my postings about crime in the area. Of course NBC29 has been beating me on that lately.
Jim Duncan wrote:
I would recommend DirecTV. Local stations aren’t an important for me, and with the new web features the local stations have that offer the news programs online- I really don’t need to turn on the set for local news.
I’d never use “Dish Network.” I say that to the extent that I would go without television before I used Dish. And that’s based entirely on my personal experiences with their parent company SBC (a phone and internet service provider in 13 states before they purchased Bell South and then AT&T and then changed their name to the latter) having seen, from the inside, how they operate.
I had used directv for years and was a huge tivo fan…switched to Diash to get the local channels and love it. I have one DHD dvr and one normal dvr. They work great and have a number of added features that my beloved tivo didn’t have. I would love the opportunity to have comcast and their new hd offerings but no cable in my neighborhood.
Directv is not upset at all about not offering local channels..noting to do with the fcc, they were offered local channels free of charge. It’s their choice and their company is bleeding….but alas if several of the proposed sale of directv does eventually happen-then directv might grow their business across the country and added new local markets.
Can’t most people use an antenna for most local channels, if you already have a satellite dish? It’s not perfect but it certainly workable for those who live closer to town.
I’ve tried one of the indoor antennas from Radio Shack out at my place at Lake Monticello. No good. I may have to get a roof mounted antenna .. or find someone I can watch ’24’ with when it begins airing again.
Absolutely. I don’t get local channels out here, but most people with a decent antenna will get at least the big four.
Thanks for reminding me those three (or is it just one, really?) were on the air. Avoiding just one Charlottesville station (29) was easy enough to do…but six? (29, plus the three Gray, and writing this reminded me that there’s another Gray, My TV Network or something like that, AND there’s another 29, like the WB or something.)
OK, I am in a position to discuss DirecTV vs DISH, because we currently have both in our house (but no cable). We have had Direct (and Tivo) for about 8 years. I like the Direct menus and the HD Tivo box. But Directv does not offer Charlottesville local channels, period, at all. My wife likes watching the local “news” shows, so we also had DISH installed lately, after giving up on Adelphia. It’s ok, largely the same channel set as Direct, but also with the local channels. It’s also somewhat less expensive. I don’t like the interface as much, and find that the Dish DVR is more awkward to use than my good old TiVo.
Now that Comcast is offering HD, I might try them, but if and only if they also offer HD DVR. I can’t understand how people can watch TV in realtime with all of those retarded commercials.
Seriously. I have a new rule in life: no DVR, no TV. I’m not about to make myself slave to a network’s schedule. I’ll watch shows when I want to, thankyouverymuch.
Comcast DVR has probably the worst DVR interface I have ever seen or used. Absolutely horrible and buggy.
The new Comcast DVRs are all HD, with a surprising number of hookup options. In addition, they all have dual tuners, so you can record two programs at once (and watch a third you’ve already recorded) or record one and watch two.
Chad Day – if your Comcast DVR is acting up, I suggest rebooting it (you have to unplug it and plug it back in to initiate the booting process. That fixes the bugs I’ve seen (which do return eventually). If your DVR remote is labeled as Adelphia, take it in and have them replace it with a Comcast DVR, which is HD and a better model overall.
Also, if you live in an old house with RG-59 coaxial cable, you probably need to rewire it with RG-6 and be sure to use an RG-6 cable from the outlet to your power protection device (which you are using, right?) and from there to your DVR.
And I’m with Waldo – DVR has made it possible to just not care when something is on the air. If I want to watch the Daily Show when I get home, which I do want to do, I can and it’s a thousand times easier than using a VCR (remember them?).
No, the comcast DVR wasn’t “acting up” — it just had a horrible user interface. The bug I was referring to is when I would be watching a program I had on a recording schedule that was in progress .. say I was a half hour behind the live viewing of the show when the recording stops. The DVR then exits out/takes me to the end of the recording instead of letting me watch my show in peace.
It’s little things like that and how just absolutely terrible the UI is that made me go to DirecTV, though the largest factor was NFL and NHL programming packages.
I was spoiled with TiVO I guess. :(
That was a problem with the older models, and it was a pain. The newer ones let you start watching a recording in progress without kicking you out at the end. All you have to do is enter the program through the DVR recordings menu. You don’t need to tune to the channel and then reverse to the beginning. Seriously – trade in for a new model. It’s a lot better.
Lesson on this DVR story: don’t be an early consumer technology adopter…
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