[mythtv-users] HDHomeRun for SDTV?

ryan patterson ryan.goat at gmail.com
Wed Mar 21 14:21:52 UTC 2007

On 3/21/07, R. G. Newbury <newbury at mandamus.org> wrote:
> Don't top post please...See below.
> jason maxwell wrote:
> >>From what i understand, right now, the FCC mandate only covers analog
> > broadcasts. They dont _have_ to send the digital channels
> > unencrypted... yet. Most companies do send all local channels
> > unencrypted though.
> Because they are required by law to do so...Digital too. See below.
> >
> > On 3/20/07, R. G. Newbury <newbury at mandamus.org> wrote:
> >> Mark J. Scheller wrote:
> >>> I'm in the Philadelphia area with FIOS TV currently recording on a
> PVR350
> >>> attached to a cable box.  This is working OK, but I now have enough
> >>> conflicts that I'm looking for an additional tuner.  Looking forward
> to the
> >>> future, as I will "soon" have an HDTV capable set, I'm wondering
> whether I
> >>> could get the HDHomeRun and use its 2 tuners now just to record SDTV
> >>> content
> >>> to my Myth (and eliminate the PVR350/cable box).
> >>>
> >>> Any input would be appreciated -- thanks in advance!
> >>>
> >>> [MjS]
> >> It will depend entirely upon what unencrypted content your provider
> >> pours down the 'wire'.
> >> Content can be delivered by digital or analog streams.
> >> Content can be SD or HD.
> >> Some digital content is encrypted and you need a set top box.
> >> Some digital content is not encrypted (although QAM256 encoded on
> cable').
> >> The FCC mandates that cablecos provide the local off-air channels
> >> through an unencrypted feed (ie: not 'premium content').
> >> So you will get your local off-air available channels as HD content,
> >> unencrypted, to the extent that the local network affiliates broadcast
> HD.
> >> Other digital channels may bne HD or SD as the cableco decides.
> >>
> >> You will probably still need the 'cable box' as it probably does the
> >> optical to wire conversion required to split out the tv signals.
> >>
> >> Geoff
> Well a quick browse through US 47 CFR lead me to chapter 76.56 which
> says, in part...
>   47 CFR 76.56
>    ...
>    (b) Carriage of local commercial tele-
>    vision stations. Effective June 2, 1993, a
>    cable television system shall carry
>    local commercial broadcast television
>    stations...
>   (c) With respect to digital signals of
> a television station carried in fulfill-
> ment of the must-carry obligations, a
> cable operator shall carry the informa-
> tion necessary to identify and tune to
> the broadcast television signal.
> .....
>   (f) Pursuant to  76.64(f)(3), a local
> commercial broadcast television station
> that fails to make an election is
> deemed a must-carry station. A cable
> operator shall carry such a television
> station on the cable system channel
> number on which the local commercial
> television station is broadcast over the
> air, or ....or......[then] the cable operator shall place
> the signal of such a television station
> on a channel of the cable system's
> choice, so long as that channel is included
> on the basic service tier.
> *********
> That seems to me to dispose of the question: the basic service tier is
> not an encrypted service tier and a digital signal must carry the
> identification and tuning information.
> I did NOT find the sections which provide penalties for failure to
> comply. However, I noted that the FCC pages have a section on the
> electronic filing of complaints. I would think that a complaint that a
> cableco had failed to comply with the regulations under which it is
> licenced would be dealt with by the FCC.
> Geoff
> IAAL and therefore had no problem reading the CFR's....

As I understand it local broadcast channels can force a cable company to
carry their analog signal on the most basic tier.  This is not true for
digital signals.  But if the cable company does carry a broadcast digital
channel they must do so unencrypted for all tiers.

Ryan Patterson
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