DTV Question & Answer

help your neighbor

Q. Is Digital Channel 21.4 gone ?
A. Channel 21.4 was removed on December 17th. - See article in the December guide) The programming on channel 21.4 has been merged into WXXI's HD service on 21.1. All the same programs are there on 21.1 and many in High Definition.

Q. Some programs do not look the
same as they 'use to'.

A. WXXI is blending many Standard Definition programs with High Definition programs... If the viewer is watching on a 4x3 set (in analog off air or basic cable) the actual picture may be some what smaller than it had been. This is because all HD programs are being down converted to a 4x3 letterbox format and SD shows are being 'pillar-boxed' to fit the HD screen. Also, PBS and other distributors have fed, as a interim solution, letterboxed SD programs which, when up converted to HD appear quite small as the worst case 'postage stamp' size. These programs are being re-fed when possible to the stations in true full-screen HD but it will take some time for these older programs to be updated.


Q. If I need them, which kind of converter box or antenna should I get?
A. Read this message from WXXI Chief Engineer, Jan Pazral for some good advice.

Q. What exactly is DTV?
DTV can refer to either: the system for sending higher quality, digital television signals - over -the-air; the higher quality, digital television signals themselves; or the TV set that displays digital television signals.

Q. Is DTV the same thing as HDTV?
A. No. HDTV, or high definition television, is the highest quality form of digital television. Not all DTV is high definition.

Q. What are my options?
A. If your TV receives its signal over-the-air with an antenna and does not have a digital tuner, you have three options to continue receiving TV after June 12th, 2009:

1. Purchase a TV converter box. A TV converter box will cost $40.00 - $70.00. The Government is offering coupons to reduce the cost of the boxes. To request coupons or learn more about the coupon program, call 1.888.DTV.2009 or visit;

2. Connect your TV to cable, satellite or another
pay service; or

3. Replace your TV with a new digital tuner equipped TV. A wide range of DTVs is available starting at $100.00.

Q. What about digital cable, FiOS,
IPTV and all that?
A. These TV sources depend on digital information and should not be affected by the current transition to DTV, which affects over -the air-broadcast television.

Q. Is anything else about DTV different?
A. You’ll enjoy a higher quality picture and CD quality sound. You’ll also be able to view program information from your TV. Depending on the channel and show, your DTV tuner or converter box might display information describing the show and the TV schedule. You also may have also head about "multicasting" a technology that allows a station to send multiple channels at the same time. WXXI multicasts three additional digital channels: WXXI-HD (cable 1011/DT21.1), WXXI-World (cable 524/DT21.2), and Create/ThinkBright (cable 433/DT21.3).