FastPipe Media » HDTV in Oklahoma

Taloga Cable HD channel lineup

Thought I’d let people know that as of March 9, we have finished our rehab of the fiber line to our tower and now offer Oklahoma City 4, 9, 25, 34, 52, 62, and OETA-DT’s on Taloga Cable in rock solid form at last. The channels are being provided at NO CHARGE, basic cable, in native 8VSB format, so subchannels are intact.

Taloga is 75 miles NW of OKC with our UHF antenna at 120′ on the tower, elevation 2000′. Since the antenna is pointing east, we decided to use KETA-DT as our source for OETA instead of KWET in Cheyenne, which would require a VHF antenna pointing west, and it comes in perfectly.

Total cost for the headend 8VSB equipment and UHF antenna was $4000. If we had gone with QAM compression and multiplexing to save bandwidth, the cost would have been $45,000.

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  1. Posted March 10, 2005 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

    This is really cool.

    Does going with 8VSB instead of QAM also mean that you don’t have to provide special set top boxes for your customers, e.g., if someone already has a STB that does 8VSB or a TV with a built-in 8VSB tuner, they can get the digital channels on your system?

    Also, if that’s the case, do they also get the sub-channels when a station like OETA is multi-casting?

    Finally, if all of that is true and it’s cheaper on the cable provider to do it the way you’ve done it, why haven’t more cable operators gone with an 8VSB system vs. a QAM system? It would also seem to be easier on the cable customer if all that is true…


  2. Posted March 11, 2005 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    Do you have the equipment to take the digital broadcasts for any station and transcode that into say analog channel 5?

    I would guess that could result in some improvements in picture quality for your customers and that the only difference someone might notice is that it says KOCO-DT in the corner and more shows are letterboxed.

    It’s really impressive what you’ve done out there. The big cable companies didn’t really seem to care about digital broadcasting, but you’ve been following it here from the beginning.


  3. stevvot
    Posted March 11, 2005 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Amazing that a rural cable co 75 miles from OKC can provide Fox-HD to their cable customers, but Cox can’t do the same in OKC proper. Somethin’ aint right with this scenario.

  4. Bobarino
    Posted March 11, 2005 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    I wonder how it is that Fox and WB digital programming is available in Taloga but Cox can’t seem to get a carriage agreement for OKC.

  5. ggore
    Posted March 11, 2005 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    The retransmission and must-carry agreements we have with the OKC stations expire on Dec 31, at which time we expect some or all of them to demand payment for carriage. The rates we have heard range from $.30-$.80 per month per subscriber. Multiply that times 9 local off-airs and you have a substantial rate hit for basic cable! Not to mention we provide a service that is NOT available for free over the air in this area. We do NOT charge for local off-airs.

    There is no alternative station for KOCO-DT in western Oklahoma, so ABC-HD is not on the system. With their directional signal and the fact that they had their analog signal removed from the translator systems in NW Oklahoma several months ago, their status is doubtful going forward. Hearst/Argyle decided not to play nice and go along with all the other OKC stations in operating the translators, for what reason I do not know.

  6. anonymous
    Posted March 12, 2005 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    Where are the OKC tranlators? I thought you picked OKC signals off air from Edmond.
    I remember when Sentinal, OK had a 130 meter tower to receive signals from OKC and Lawton 7. A couple years ago when I was there, Sentinal had a much shorter tower receiving UHF signals from translators near Sayre. No VHF antenna pointed to Lawton.
    I think what you’re telling me is, you still have to get DT signals from Edmond.
    Watch the Nexstar, Cable One battle in Joplin. Nexstar has pulled stations in San Angelo, Texarkana, Joplin, Carthage, MO, etc. off Cable One and Cox systems while demanding $$$. If Nexstar wins this battle {unlikely} you’ve got problems come Jan. 1st.


  7. anonymous
    Posted March 12, 2005 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

    Gage, Strong City, Seiling, Elk City, Gould, Alva, Erick, Woodward


  8. ggore
    Posted March 13, 2005 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    The DT channels are picked up off-air from OKC. Analogs are received from the Seiling translator 3 miles from Taloga. We currently receive KOCO off-air directly from OKC, but it’s a terrible quality picture since they don’t transmit full signal either east or west of OKC. KOCO’s transmitter pattern is hourglass-shaped so as to not interfere with a channel 5 in Ft. Smith. This problem occurred when channel 5 was moved from Enid to OKC years ago.

    The translators used to carry channels 4, 5, 9, 25, and 34. KFOR bought the system and set up a plan where all the stations would share in the maintenance and operational costs, KOCO alone refused to participate, so they were removed and 43 was added.

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