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WESH in HD

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Reader Wayne was kind enough to take a few shots of his swanky Sony TV showing WESH’s debut in HD. To celebrate, the station aired their 11pm newscast entirely commercial free. And yes there are a couple shots of Martha Sugalski in there for all of you gawkers out there, of course.

And some of WFTV as well.

Follow the jump and click on the thumbs to see larger version

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13 COMMENTS

  1. Looks absolutely great! Live HD to SD is like color to b&w, especially when you see the comparison on a decent monitor.

    It’s uncanny that nobody in this market can afford to do what others in these smaller markets have done.

  2. They can afford to do it, they just choose not to until necessary. Time will tell if that decision is the right one or not.

  3. it’s not that they can’t afford it… they’re just being slow for some reason.

    10 will be HD in their new place in ’09

    7 will be HD next year… they’re busy building new control room and making adjustments to do it in ’08

    dunno about 6 or 4… but the have other problems!!

  4. The camera shown in the second picture costs about $85,000 a pop.
    For Joe:
    Florida TV markets are rather interesting.
    One might think that Miami/Ft. Lauderdale is the largest TV
    market in the state, but if one looks at the rankings, Tampa Bay
    is the largest market. Miami/Ft. Lauderdale is the second, Orlando a very close third, WPB forth, and Jacksonville fifth.
    The trends seem to indicate that with the next census and calculations,
    Orlando is poised with the large growth (still) in Central Fl to pass or tie Miami for 2nd place. The difference is the area covered by
    Tampa and Orlando. Lots of area or land for growth where S Fl is pretty much built out. Tampa and Orlando TV signals together cover a huge portion of the state.

  5. cord: That’s utter nonsense. There’s no reason on earth for a network outlet not to broadcast HD if they can afford it. If that’s the case and they chosee not to broadcast HD, they are complete and utter morons. There’s absolutely no downside to it.

    vnews: So what’s the reason for the “slowdown”? See above for comment re affordability.

    Ed: You are absolutely correct. Geography has a helluva lot to do with it. That said, I have to wonder what the salaries are for 6pm/11pm anchors in both markets. Finally, I’m still miffed as to why no local HD here. Unless collective station management doesn’t consider local HD a ratings draw (and thus increased ad revenue), I can’t imagine why nobody’s interested in broadcasting local HD. Hell, even commercials these days are showing up in HD.

  6. Joe: I too sure would be spitting fire for no HD in the Miami/Ft. Lauderdale market, if I still lived down there. It is like not wanting to go local color way back when. The stations that were slow to convert paid the price.
    One reason sited for Orlando going HD in a big way-it is reported there is a big HD penetration in the market and sales of HD sets is high. This is thought to be due to the huge engineering community for NASA and related industry.
    But, if you have a fairly decent indoor or outdoor TV antenna
    and the right tuner, depending on where you are in S. Fl, you can see WPTV 5 from WPB with their local HD. They cover pretty far south. For reference their tower is on SR 7 NW of Boynton Beach. It is 1500 ft high and easily seen from the Turnpike. Their digital is on channel 55.
    The salaries in Tampa seem to be comparable to S. Fl. In Orlando, it depends but is probably a bit lower, but not much less. 35 is a Fox O.O., 6 is owned by the same group that owns 10 down there (“Local 6” up here), 2 is a Hearst station, 9 is Cox.
    Tampa, Fox owns 13, and the big players like Cox, Scripps (HD in Tampa like WPB), Sinclair, et-al own the others.

  7. Ed, I see your points, but I can’t see that sales of HD sets in MIA/FTL aren’t far from other markets (percentage-wise). I suspect that a lot of folks think they’re getting HD when in fact they’re getting SD stretch-o-vision. Digital/HD consumer education isn’t the best. At any rate, local HD should already be here but it’s not for unknown reasons.

    I do have an outdoor roof antenna, but it’s directional and pointed south towards the MIA/FTL antenna farm (I’m in Broward). As such, WBP digital stations are effectively blocked. I need a directional as opposed to an omni-directional for two reasons: MIA/FTL digital 7 and 10 are VHF and more difficult to receive, and I also have an analog set in the bedroom that needs the directional to the south to get all channels clearly.

  8. It’s a business decision, Joe. If the other stations are not in HD, why do it? It costs one helluva lot to go HD. Most companies (and not just media companies) will spend money like that only when they have to. Obviously, Hearst and Cox have a different business philosophy.

    Look, TV companies are notoriously cheap. They will, of course, all be HD by the deadline, but don’t think that just because you want them to, they give a damn,

  9. Sure, it’s a business decision. Just like the decision 7 and 10 made to stretch their SD digital picture (albeit a bad decision). But I doubt that stations use logic like “the competition’s not doing it so why should we” – that’s just not valid business logic.

    I have to assume that when they realize they’ll make more money by providing local HD content, stations will do it. Apparently, none of them believe that to be true right now. And that implies that they don’t believe the TV-watching public in South Florida is serious about wanting local HD, which may or may not be true.

    BTW, there is no deadline to go HD – only digital.

  10. WESH looks pretty good in HD. About time WFTV got some HD competition.

    Only 7 Florida television stations are broadcasting their newscasts in true high definition, while a hand full of other stations are broadcasting in widescreen standard definition.

    As for which Florida television stations could be next in line to go HD with their newscasts… My predictions…

    Miami-Ft. Lauderdale market. This may sound a bit far-fetched… The NBC owned WTVJ becoming the first station in the South Florida market to offer news in HD, before the competition even attempt pulling it off.

    West Palm Beach market. The Hearst owned WPBF becoming the second station to offer news in HD, behind Scripps owned WPTV.

    Jacksonville-Brunswick market. The Gannett owned WTLV & WJXX becoming the first stations in the Northeast Florida market to offer their news in HD.

    Pensacola-Mobile market. The Media General owned WKRG becoming the first station in the Northwest Florida market to offer their news in HD.

  11. Disregard the WPBF comment. I much as I would like to think WPLG will in first out of the HD gate, it won’t happen. Maybe, however, they’ll get Sky 10 HD.

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