Home HD Transition SFLTV Exclusive: WFOR to go HD in Early 2010?

SFLTV Exclusive: WFOR to go HD in Early 2010?


The question has been asked for months as of when WFOR will finally make the switch over to High Definition broadcasting. WFOR is currently the only English speaking station still broadcasting in SD in the Miami/Ft. Lauderdale market.  So, when exactly will WFOR go HD? The moment may finally be coming. According to SFLTV.com insiders in CBS management, WFOR is expected to go HD come February right before the Super Bowl.  According to our sources, a new graphics package is also expected to follow with the HD Transition. SFLTV will pass more information on as we actively receive it.

What are your thoughts on WFOR going HD? Do you think this can create a ratings boost for the station?

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  1. WFOR has been broadcasting in HD since 2000. Just not local news and commercials. Loss of viewers of their local news product due to the lack of HD is debatable. It was reported a while back from a then-insider that delays in implementing HD local news for the O&Os was due to a CBS Corp. money issue. They already converted at WBBM in Chicago and at least one other O&O a few years ago and then temporarily pulled the plug on expansion to the rest of the stations. Making a big deal about it via promotions ahead of the Super Bowl makes little sense, though. Anyone who cares that much about it is already fully aware that they’re late to the ballgame, if you’ll pardon the pun. Best of luck to them, though.

    • Their SD is probably the worse quality SD of any local station…everrr. Even WPBF up here in West Palm Beach is still SD, but their quality is terrific. They are facing the same situation CBS 4 is, WPBF’s owner, Hearst, froze HD upgrades, and from what I know, WPBF was to be next in that upgrade along with WYFF when the HD upgrade was implemented. WPBF’s new set tho totally made up for it in the meanwhile in my opinion. But, like WFOR, WPBF seems sooo ready for HD; they are using HD cameras, HD capable set, digital facility. It seems like the permission to push a button is what is preventing them.

      Of course WFOR has been broadcasting CBS programming in HD since 2000…as have most local stations…but the first station to ever broadcast HD in South Florida was WFLX in 1998.

      • Um, no. As usual GBPalmBeach87 gets it wrong. WSVN-DT and WPLG-DT were on the air first and both passed network HD before WFLX-DT.

        • Um they may have gone “digital” first, but as far as actual HD programming, WFLX and WSVN would both have that since FOX did it before ABC.

  2. WFOR is so late to the local HD party that it’s completely anticlimactic. That said, It’ll be fun to see what the anchors really look like in HD.

  3. Money problems= lame excuse. TV stations don’t own their equipment, they lease them. If their vendor was going to charge an arm and a leg, then they should have just looked elsewhere.

    FYI- I know this cause I took a class on media management 2 years ago.

    • Broadcast stations purchase the vast majority of their equipment. I know this because I have been in broadcasting for 35 years.

  4. For those of you who don’t have cable, Dish or Direct TV, if you get a good indoor antenna, you will be able able to pick up all local channels in HD (if have have hd) . Terk makes an excellent antenna which I use primarly as a backup for my cable , its called the Terk5 which Amazon sells for $30 , including shipping.

    • My Samsung TV has one of those built in Digital Antennas, I pick up EVERY single HD Channel without paying for the cable box. It’s awesome! I get digital music channels, too.

        • It’s an ATSC tuner. Nothing to do with quadrature amplitude modulation. QAM is used in digital cable transmission and reception.

          • If Brandon means buit-in tuner rather than “antenna,” and he’s a cable subscriber, then yes, it’s a built-in QAM tuner in addition to a built-in ATSC tuner for use with an antenna.

  5. I could picture CBS debuting WFOR-TV (CBS 4) newscasts in HD on Sunday, January 31st at 6:30PM (the night of the 2010 Grammy Awards… and 1 week before Super Bowl XLIV). I also hope CBS 4’s 10PM newscast on WBFS-TV (My 33) will also be included in the switch to HD.

    Graphics – I could picture CBS 4 (and My 33) getting Hothaus or Giant Octopus.

    Set design – I hope CBS will be getting something new.

    Theme music – CBS opting of either “Heart of our City” by In the Groove Music, which can be heard on WBBM-TV Chicago, Illinois and WNEM-TV Saginaw, Michigan… or “The CBS Enforcer Music Collection” by Gari, which seems to be very popular with CBS stations across the nation.

  6. hmm, I would keep on dreamin about that one, I get a feeling, that their graphics will be an HD variation of what they have, no new set, and music will also be a variation of what they have. I’m sure My33 will be included. You’re probably right about 6:30 tho

  7. WFOR employees have been frustrated with the delay in going HD. Milking worn equipment, even having hand-me-down gear shipped in from other CBS O&Os to be put on the streets or simply stripped to use as spare parts for existing cameras.

    Most of the blame for the situation goes to the money spent to upgrade other O&O stations like WBBM in Chicago. The high cost for that station, along with the downturn in the economy have made this a real fight to finally get something, anything, close to HD gear at the station.

    Hopes are having the Super Bowl on CBS will be enough to push the beancounters in New York into the future of HD down here in Miami. Until then, lots of folks have their fingers crossed because, until the actual change happens, the situation remains the same. It’s no fun working with old gear and still expected to compete financially in the Miami market.

    • Not the smartest move either considering that WBBM has lower overall ratings than WFOR in its respective market. They should have given HD to their most likely to succeed stations first than just by market stature.

        • I’m disgusted in WFOR’s switching ability from CBS-HD programming to local commercials. For some odd reason, when they go from HD network programming, to a local spot, they have to throw on the SD CBS satellite feed before hitting a local break. It sure seems like a struggle to them just to even get HD network programming on the air. Ever notice the final segment of TPIR (The Price Is Right) is in SD? Watch it and you’ll see their switcher/mixer is incapable of switching smoothly from HD to SD. I’m disgusted.

          • Wpbf had that same issue until recently. Eventhough their news is in sd, they use HD curtAins and have smooth transitions.

  8. A quick web search reveals that CBS O&Os in Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles and Philadelphia are currently doing local news in HD. There may be more, not sure.

  9. You can say whatever you want about WFOR but they were the 1st to report that the Jupiter mass murderer has been arrested and before the end of Saturday nite’s 11 pm newscast they had a reporter live on cam from the motel that he was arrested. I understand WTVJ had Hank Testor on a moped on the way though…….budget cuts

    • No, WPTV was first to report this. Jim Sitton himself had called them immediately. WFOR was second, I flipped through quickly, WPEC was last. The hotel clerk however that recognized him saw him on WSVN 7 on AMW! 😛

  10. The Miami Herald’s lost was WFOR gains, Jim Defede’s contact must have given CBS4 ample time to have a reporter on the scene considering this is happening in Key West.

    • yes. i know that for many years in the Keys, WSVN was the ONLY station most people there watched, but in recent times WFOR has made commitments to that area which is a smart thing to do. WTVJ and WPLG seem to still think the hell with the keys.

      • Yes, WFOR was on top of the story in Mia/FTL. Anyone notice how 7News kept emphasizing how it was a result of AMW on 7 and how they seemed to take credit for it? The fact of the matter is, if this story were repeatedly broadcast on their station for 5 weeks, why didn’t it lead to the capture tip earlier? Obviously, there are no 7News watchers in Long (Island) Key. All that 7News can claim is that they didn’t pre-empt a Fox Sports event to run 7News and a Dreco Dive repeat.

    • They will absolutely not copy that. I would put money on it. That look totally represents big northern city…and is sooooo Un-South Florida. I just cant see WFOR going for that. They have always kept themselves very South Florida-ish.

    • Well put, couldn’t have said it better…..just changing the graphics won’t improve the entire news cast

        • Brandon….sit and think for a minute ok? The Black Eyed Peas thing was a CBS network promo, not a WFOR promo. Get your complaints straight. Same company, different outlet.


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