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DTV Tech Notes

% Larry Bloomfield & Jim Mendrala

(408) 778-3412 or (805) 294-1049

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October 16, 1998


DTV Tech Note - 021


     Sharing experiences, knowledge or anything else relating to DTV, HDTV etc. with your fellow engineers: That's what we are all about. We will send this to anyone asking, just E-mail us. If you are receiving this newsletter and didn't ask for it or want to get off the list, just e-mail us that request.  Welcome to all the new subscribers.  We hope everyone, new and long time subscribers, will participate in all ways with comment, experiences, questions and/or answers. This is YOUR forum!


It's been 2 months since we put out the last issue of this forum.


- WHICH November?  D-Day for DTV is supposed to be November 1, 1998.

In letter on Thursday to the Consumer Electronics Manufacturers

Association (CEMA) and the National Cable Television Association

(NCTA), however, the date cited by FCC chair William Kennard was

November 1, 1999, one year later, by which time he expects CEMA members

"to produce commercially viable, [IEEE] 1394-enabled digital television sets [capable of digital interconnection with cable set-tops].  There is no reason why this should not be complete by November 1, 1999.  If for some reason this deadline cannot be met," Kennard said, "I request that you alert me and tell me the sources of delay so that the FCC can continue to facilitate resolution of this important issue."

     So, does 1999 sound to you like it's a year later than 1998?

Well, it sounds like it's too soon for CEMA president Gary Shapiro.  Of

Kennard's November 1, 1999, Shapiro said, "We're doing everything we

can to meet his ambitious deadline."


In the mean time, we ran across something that we think our subscribers might be interested in.  None of us at DTV Tech Notes have anything to do with the company making the offer, nor do we get any compensation in any form from any business you do with them.  We are only passing this along as a really good deal.  The company name is Roxy and they are located some place in the New England states.  They are offering a complete RCA, (everything you need to install and receive) Direct to Home satellite receive system.  The system is geared to receive DirecTV and USSB.  It will probably only work in the United States.  Anyone who calls them can get all this for $99.95.  If, however, you tell them you saw their ad on AOL, the price is $89.95.  If you live outside their state, there is no sales tax.  They will ask you to pay shipping, which is $19.95. The guy Larry spoke to at Roxy (to verify all this) is John Brand.  He can be reached at 800-451-5999 ext 423 or you can e-mail him at    He said that this is a promotional offer and did not mention how long will be offered at these prices. They do have other offers and other equipment.  You can discuss this with John when you speak to him. 

These things are very easy to install.  It requires little or no technical know how. If you use the S-Video output, you will have studio quality pictures.  This is digital delivery similar to what we are going to get in the future of terrestrial television.

BTW-- This does not include any programming; that you have to set up with DirecTV and USSB respectively.  Each has different packages to suit your viewing requirements.  Expect to pay (if you have it) about what you are pay for cable, but with a lot more choices and far superior video quality.  Both Larry and Jim have this service and would probably only give it up if something better came along.


DVT and Safe Title



How long will we have to continue using the NTSC safe title generator?  I

would guess as long as there is a NTSC receiver in use.  Judging from Jim's

notes about set-top converters, this could be for some time.  Safe title and

safe action areas were invented to protect the worst-case receiver.  It is

something we have all learned to live with.

Computer monitors are under-scanned to show all the viewable information.

Will DTV sets also be under-scanned or over-scanned like a "classic"

television?  At any rate, if we follow past practice, graphics and text will

have to remain in a 3:4 protected area until it is guaranteed that nobody

will watch the program on a 3:4 set.  Or until the converters force the

program to letterbox format.

- Don Sears, NBC MAGIC, Burbank

(Editor's note:  MAGIC stands for Multiple Access Graphics Imaging Center)


We have run across a daily newsletter that may be of interest to some of you.  It is free. From:  It is called the SkyREPORT.COM -  Check it out.


Sorry this is a short newsletter this time, but we will be issuing another very soon. 


If you have something to say or contribute, please do so.  This is YOUR form or journal.  If your company or organization has done something different or new in DTV, let us know.  In the not too distant future, I hope to be able share with you some of the exciting things we are doing at SunUp Design Systems.  Until I have a clear-cut direction on what I can and can not write about, it's best to not say anything.  Larry & Jim


The DTV Tech Notes are published for broadcast professionals who are interested in DTV, HDTV etc. by Larry Bloomfield and Jim Mendrala. We can

be reached by either e-mail (and yes Larry's e-mail is till the same) or land lines (408) 778-3412, (805) 294-1049 or fax at (805) 294-0705.  News items, comments, opinions etc. are always welcome from our readers; letters may be edited for brevity, but usually not.    

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