DISH - new local channel numbers?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Adrian_N, Feb 5, 2002.

  1. Adrian_N

    Adrian_N Agent

    Oct 29, 2000
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    What is going on with the channel numbers? I normally watch my local stations on channels in the 700s. But I recently noticed they are also in the 8000s series (4000s?) of numbers.

    Is there a difference? Are we supposed to migrate to the new channels? The only differenc appears to be the channel label (network and locality, vs. station call letters).

    I imagine someone here knows.

  2. Chip_Slattery

    Chip_Slattery Stunt Coordinator

    Jan 10, 2001
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    When "must-carry" kicked in at the beginning of the year and Dish was forced to add more local channels they moved the locals to the 8000 range in order to group them better. (I believe that's the reason)

    Anyway, the locals are currently mapped to the "old" 700's as well, but eventually these will go away. I would start learning the new channel numbers...
  3. RAF

    RAF Lead Actor

    Jul 3, 1997
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    Here's the "official" word as explained by Dish on the monthly Charlie chat. The new "must carry" rule states that local channels must be carried (where available - whatever that means) by Dish and they must be on the menu in consecutive numbering positions. As it happens, the only large block that was available on Dish started at the 8000 number range. In the case on the NYC area we start at 8100 and go up to 8116 (for a total of 17 local channels including some non-English ones).
    That doesn't cover every channel available over the air in the NYC area but most of them. There is some criteria which allows some smaller stations not to be included (I'm not sure of the exact rules on this.)
    Additionally, not all channels are on the 110 and 119 satellites (covered by the Dish500 antenna.) To get the full number of locals available in most markets you must also have the 61.5 (or 148 in the west) satellite dish. Luckily, I already have one for HDTV on the 61.5 bird(which has an awesome picture!). According to DISH, if you don't have the 2nd dish and/or the required switches they will provide them for you at no cost (probably to comply with the access regulations) as long as you subscribe to the local channels, assuming your area is eligible for local access.
    The reality of this is, however, (according to a technician I talked to) that DISH is not really geared up at this point to provide all the dishes and switches to all installers so there will be quite a wait for some people. And, if the merger goes through (DISH has predicted by mid-summer) then with the re-alignment everything will be reverting to a single dish arrangement - at least for local access. So, unless some of the local stations are absolute musts (the ones on the secondary dish tend to be the non-network and specialized locals) you might want to wait until this all occurs rather than installing a 2nd dish for a few(?) months. Stay tuned.
    As for the duplication of stations, I also wondered about this and was told that the network stations will remain where they are (ABC at 245, etc.) as well as being in the 8000 block. The plan, eventually, is for Dish to relocate the local stations in the unused 1-100 block. They are hoping to be able to provide each market with the channel numbers they are familiar with on "regular" TVs. In New York that means Channel 2 becomes CBS, Channel 4 becomes NBC, Channel 5 becomes FOX, etc. etc. (I think you get the idea.)
    When this all happens? Only time will tell. The "must have" rule has severely limited the amount of expansion that dish can have at the moment since it is using up a tremendous amount of bandwidth they were going to use for other things. The merger would greatly help in this regard. I can't help but wonder if the "anti-merger" forces had a hand in the "must carry" rulings.
    Who knows?

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