WMSN FOX 47
 
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DTV FAQ

Do you need help receiving FOX 47 or 47-1 with an antenna?
Follow this link to a guide WMSN-TV DTV and Analog reception guide

Q: I can’t receive FOX 47’s digital signal, but I get all of the other stations.
A: WMSN is the only VHF Digital station in the Madison market. We broadcast on VHF Channel 11. All of the other stations are UHF (14-59). Here’s a table showing the local stations and their channel assignments.

Station Analog Channel Digital Channel
NBC (WMTV) 15 UHF 19 UHF
PBS (WHA) 21 UHF 20 UHF
ABC (WKOW) 27 UHF 26 UHF
CW (WBUW) 57 UHF 32 UHF
FOX 47 (WMSN) 47 UHF 11 VHF
CBS (WISC) 3 VHF 50 UHF

Therefore, you need an antenna, such as ‘rabbit ears” that is capable of receiving VHF signals. You may have to try adjusting the length of the rabbit ears." Also, if it is an amplified antenna, you may have to try different levels of amplification, as the signal will not show up on the tv if it is over-amplified. VHF stations are also more susceptible to a phenomenon known as “multipath.” This is where the signal bounces off of buildings, objects and the like, and arrive at different times to your antenna, effectively making it harder for the tuner to receive the signal. This can be minimized by changing antenna position.

Q: Why don’t you turn the power up on your transmitter so we can get your signal better and will you turn up your power more after June 12, 2009?
A: We are at the maximum allowed power allocated to us by the Federal Communications Commission. Our power levels will be the same after June 12, 2009.

Q: Why aren’t you broadcasting in High Definition?
A: We pass though all of the FOX network High Definition programming over the air. We’ve been doing so since October, 2004. Local and syndicated programming is another matter. There are a couple reasons that these are not in High Definition, the main reason is that much of the syndicated programming is not available in HD from our program providers. The other reason is that our entire technical infrastructure would have to be rebuilt to handle local HD programming. This is something that should be happening within the next year or two.

Q: I used to receive your WMSN-DT signal fine, now I don’t get it anymore, did you lower your power?
A: Chances are that something may have changed in your viewing environment.

  • A connector came loose
  • The was antenna moved
  • A powered antenna might be set too high or too low
  • Something large moved in your residence. (such as furniture, appliances, etc)

To remedy this situation:

  • Perform a channel scan
    (1.) Wipe out old channel scan information by unplugging your antenna from the set. Perform Channel Scan.
    (Some sets won't reload new information from a channel scan if channel information already exists. By doing a channel scan without the antenna attached you are 'erasing' any old information.")
    (2.) Reload new information by reconnecting the antenna cable and perform a Channel Scan. This will reload all digital station tuning information and you should once again pick up all the DTV stations.
  • Check all of your cable and antenna connections
  • adjust your antenna position
  • adjust your antenna power
  • perform a channel scan on your TV set or converter box.

Q: Your signal was breaking up on my cable box/satellite box.
A: Try connecting an antenna to your TV and receiving our signal over-the-air. Of course, you’ll need a Digital (ATSC) tuner.

Unfortunately, we do not have control over third party program providers such as Charter cable or DirecTV. They both receive our signal over-the-air and retransmit it on their system.  If our signal has problems, be assured that we know about it and we are doing everything possible to get it back to normal.   We also do not have much control over what is sent to us by the FOX Network Occasionally there will be some blocking or audio stuttering that originates from FOX.

Q: Is FOX 47 available in HD on cable or satellite?
A: Sinclair Broadcast Group and Charter Communications signed a retransmission agreement. FOX 47 HD is available through Charter Cable in the Madison area on Channel 617, it is also available on a QAM tuner on 47-1 (in different areas, this may show up on a different channel). Madison local stations including WMSN-TV are now available in HD through DirecTV and Dish Network.

Q: What channel is FOX 47's HD channel on?
A: WMSN-TV/DT is sent over-the-air on VHF Channel 11. Therefore your antenna should be capable of receiving both VHF and UHF signals. Information contained within the transmitted signal lets your digital receiver know when you tune to 47-1, to automatically look for Channel 11 and display that information on 47-1.

Q: What is the Digital TV (DTV) transition?
A: The switch from analog to digital broadcast television is referred to as the digital TV (DTV) transition. In 1996, the U.S. Congress authorized the distribution of an additional broadcast channel to each broadcast TV station so that they could start a digital broadcast channel while simultaneously continuing their analog broadcast channel. Later, Congress mandated that June 12, 2009 would be the last day for full-power television stations to broadcast in analog. Broadcast stations in all U.S. markets are currently broadcasting in both analog and digital. After June 12, 2009, full-power television stations will broadcast in digital only.

Q: What is an Analog TV?
A: Analog TV: Analog technology has been in use for the past 50 years to transmit conventional TV signals to consumers. Most current television transmissions are received through analog television sets. Analog signals vary continuously, creating fluctuations in color and brightness.

Q: What is Digital TV?
A: Digital Television (DTV): Digital TV is a new type of broadcasting technology that will transform television. Because DTV is delivered digitally, the television signal is virtually free of interference. And because DTV is more efficient than analog, broadcasters are able to offer television with improved quality pictures and surround sound. DTV will soon replace today’s analog television.

Q: How do I know if I own a DTV?
A: What you need to know is whether your TV set has something called a "digital tuner" already built in. If it does, your TV set is already configured to receive and display the new digital over-the-air TV signals that will be transmitted in June 2009. To check whether your TV set can receive over-the-air digital broadcast signals, take a look at your owner’s manual or look on the set for an indication that it has "digital input" or "ATSC" (for Advanced Television Systems Committee, which is developing the DTV format). You can also go to the manufacturer’s website and check the capabilities of the set by the manufacturer model number.
If your television set is labeled as “analog” or “NTSC,” and is NOT labeled as containing a digital tuner, it contains an analog tuner only. You will need a converter.

Q: Will my existing antenna work with DTV?
A: DTV uses the same antennas as analog TV. If you already have a good VHF and UHF antenna, either indoors or on your roof, you don’t have to buy an antenna that is “HD Ready.” DTV broadcasters have been assigned channels in the VHF and UHF bands, between 54 and 700 MHz, where analog channels 2 to 51 are now. Therefore, as long as a DTV signal is available, your existing antenna should still work after the transition is complete.

Q: How do I know whether I need a converter?
A: If you use “rabbit ears” or a rooftop antenna for TV reception, you probably need a converter. Television sets connected to cable, satellite or other pay TV service do not require converters. Televisions with digital tuners also do not need converters. Take a short quiz at the DTV Transition Web site to see whether the converter box is the right option for your household to make the digital transition at www.dtvtransition.org.

For more answers to frequently asked questions, please visit the FCC‘s FAQ-Consumer Corner website at www.dtv.gov/consumercorner.html

IMPORTANT LINKS AND INFORMATION

For information about the transition to Digital TV and Analog Shutdown, visit the FCC's informational web sites here
www.dtv.gov
www.dtv2009.gov
www.dtvtransition.org

Click here for an article which explains DTV in "Layman's terms."

www.dtvanswers.com - DTV Answers offers more information about television’s switch to digital, including resources to help choose an antenna, converter box details, videos, and more.

www.myfreehdtv.com - Learn more about free over-the-air HDTV!

www.checkhd.com - To help choose an antenna and what type of reception you can expect in your area.

www.ceretailers.org - Visit the Consumer Electronics Retailers Coalition and download a special “Consumer Guide” on the DTV Transition.

www.dtv.gov - DTV related consumer resources, outreach tools, publications, news, and more can be found here.

www.dtvtransition.org - Take an online quiz to find out if you are ready for the DTV Transition or access an extensive list of online DTV resources.

www.digitaltips.org - A valuable resource provided by the Consumer Electronics Association, has a handy "Quick Start Guide" to install a TV Converter Box and other useful tools.

www.getreadyfordigitaltv.com - Useful information and television spots brought to you by the National Cable & Telecommunications Association.

www.ncta.com - The National Cable & Telecommunications Association website.

Ultimate-HDTV.com
UltimateHDTV is your complete reference site for HDTV news, reviews, tips, and more! Visit our Digital Television (DTV) section to learn more about DTV in USA and abroad, as well as your local reception, antenna issues, and how to receive DTV over your cable or satellite TV system. Use our Remote section to get the most from your univeral remotes. Check our our HDTV Accessories section for the ultimate list of TV stands and mounts, buyers guides to cables and wireless home signal distribution systems. Be sure to check out out latest section, Personal Video Recorders (PVRs), like TiVo and ReplayTV, that let you record and watch your programs on YOUR schedule. Complete listing of hacks and upgrades, to keep working for you.
http://www.ultimate-hdtv.com

Digital TV
A Cringely Crash Course
http://www.pbs.org/opb/crashcourse/

Marshall Brain's How Stuff Works
How Digital Television Works
http://www.howstuffworks.com/dtv.htm

Marshall Brain's How Stuff Works
How HDTV Works
http://www.howstuffworks.com/hdtv.htm

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