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June 20, 2021 4:07 pm  #61


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

Glen Warren wrote:

I was under the belief that TVO/OECA was transmitting Channel 19 from the CBC tower at Jarvis St. until they moved facilities to the CN Tower.

Speaking of TVO... Why doesn't TVO broadcast TFO on a subchannel of RF 19? Would it really cost that much?

Here in Peterborough/Northumberland, Global Toronto is about to be added as a subchannel to the CHEX RF 12. In fact, it may have already happened. This is to replace the coverage lost by the shutdown of RF 27 in Baltimore, ON.
 

Last edited by Tim Brown 2016 (June 20, 2021 5:19 pm)

 

June 21, 2021 12:53 am  #62


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

Tim Brown 2016 wrote:

Glen Warren wrote:

I was under the belief that TVO/OECA was transmitting Channel 19 from the CBC tower at Jarvis St. until they moved facilities to the CN Tower.

Speaking of TVO... Why doesn't TVO broadcast TFO on a subchannel of RF 19? Would it really cost that much?

Here in Peterborough/Northumberland, Global Toronto is about to be added as a subchannel to the CHEX RF 12. In fact, it may have already happened. This is to replace the coverage lost by the shutdown of RF 27 in Baltimore, ON.

TFO was separated from OECA in 2007 and now exists as a stand alone crown entity with its own mandate and government funding (and more recently, it's own share of hi jinx, and Executive / HR shenanigans making it into the public purview)

La Chaine/TFO only had 3 high power analog transmitters, and about a dozen LPTV transmitters, all of which were shutdown with the transition to HDTV service in Canada at the end of August 2012. The majority of the TFO transmitters were in Eastern Ontario, the Ottawa Valley, and Northern Ontario.  TFO never had a conventional transmitter in Toronto. La Chaine/TFO had mandatory coverage on Ontario cable TV systems, and later on DTH satellite.
 

 

June 21, 2021 1:19 am  #63


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

I don’t know one person or myself, who watches TVO.

 

June 21, 2021 8:48 am  #64


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

Glen Warren wrote:

In Phase wrote:

RadioActive wrote:

One of them was City's room (or whatever it was) on the CN Tower.  I still remember how it ended. Frankish started poking around in the place and pretended to pull out a wire, asking, "I wonder what this does?", which sent the screen to static and snow for about 5 secs. He then put it back, saying something like, "I guess we know now!"

one more photo - the original CITY-TV transmitter at the CN Tower

https://i.ibb.co/nPpkgzR/Original-CITY-TV-transmitter.jpg

Are those a pair of British Pye TVT transmitters?, or like Monty Python says... Am I very much mistaken ? 

Are they working as main and back-up or are they running in parallel operation?

The transmitter has an interesting history.

It began CITY-TV life at Canada Square (Yonge & Eglington) on channel 79.  It was subsequently moved to the CN Tower.  It was really a design by George Townsend (who made Townsend transmitters in the 1970's and 80's, which morphed into Comark, and is now known as Hitachi Kokusai Electric Comark).  At some point in the late 1970's, probably with the move to the CN Tower, the exciters (main & backup located in the centre cabinet) were changed to PYE TVT to increase stability and reliability.  Curiously, the transmitter manuals had "AMPEX" on them, but the cabinets had CCA logos on the front.  It seems there were a few different companies or people that had a hand in this transmitter.

The high power amplifiers were klystons.  There was a Visual amplifier (the left cabinet) and an Aural amplifier (the right cabinet) and the two signals were externally diplexed before feeding the antenna,  Each amplifier was wideband tuned so that if necessary, a single klystron amplifier could amplify both aural and visual, in an internally diplexed mode, at reduced power.

The output of the transmitter was about 15kW visual and 1.5kW aural.  The transmitter was water cooled and consumed about 200kW of power to produce the 15kW output so it was incredibly inefficient.

Th channel was changed to 57 in 1983.

It was replaced with a more efficient fully solid state transmitter around 1992.  At the time, it was the highest powered, solid state UHF TV transmitter in North America.
 

 

June 21, 2021 9:09 am  #65


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

Glen Warren wrote:

tvguy wrote:

It was a hot and muggy day. I remember because there was very little visibility.  No great tropo that day.  I was using something minimal like a 4-bay bowtie.   The Erie PA stations were certainly very strong at that elevation.  My recollection is that the flamethrower on Ch. 26  from Jamestown NY which was an indie that carried CFTO's programming a great deal of the time - was rock solid.   Only had a few minutes to try things out and the TV was a very heavy "transportable" - clunky - because it was of late 1960's vintage.  Commerce Court West was completed in '72, so I would have been up there in the summer of '71.  Not that many local (Canadian) TV stations on the air at the time.  My visit preceded Global, Citytv, Omni(s), and many other stations.  So there wasn't much on the air on UHF at that time in this area.  DXing would have been great - had there been an opening.  OECA (TVontario) would have been transmitting either from Canada Square or perhaps the old CBC tower on Jarvis St.

I knew that City TV had the original transmitter atop Canada Square at 2180 Yonge St. Power was around 20Kw  ???  Power and antenna gain increased when City moved to CN Tower in May 76...  I thought City stayed at Canada Square until they moved to CN Tower.

Correct

Glen Warren wrote:

I never heard of TVO/OECA also transmitting from Canada Square, I thought it was only City TV.

Correct  (TVO had their studio at Canada Square)

Glen Warren wrote:

I was under the belief that TVO/OECA was transmitting Channel 19 from the CBC tower at Jarvis St. until they moved facilities to the CN Tower.

Correct
 

 

June 21, 2021 1:50 pm  #66


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

Now here's another blast from the past that I never knew about. This is from Dec. 1973 about a fight local TV and radio stations had about who could get an antenna spot on the then-still-to-be-finished CN Tower. I don't recall these battles back then, but they obviously happened. 

To me, though, the biggest irony has to be CFTO owner John Bassett actually trying to make this claim over providing a stronger signal into Buffalo (and by extension the Niagara Falls, Ont. area) for Toronto's Channel 9:

"We believe that our programming is more appealing than that of the Buffalo stations, and we believe that if we are given an opportunity to project our signal as clearly as the Buffalo stations into that populous area, that we can beat them, as we have done in Toronto, and bring these Canadian viewers back to Canadian television." 

"More appealing programming?" Really? Even though most of that "programming" was purchased U.S. imports even back then? That, as my late and very great grandma used to say, is a lot of chutzpah! 

Oh, and I love the thought of CHIN being overpowered by CKFM on cheap Japanese radios! Not to mention the unrelated story of CJRT on life support. What an insane year that must have been!

https://i.ibb.co/wQsZydP/CN-Tower-Antenna-Fight-Dec-1973.jpg

 

June 21, 2021 2:18 pm  #67


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

Bassett seems to focus squarely on the Big 3 Buffalo network affiliates, and forgets to mention two strong independents

i) CHCH-TV,  which had a strong primetime schedule in the 70s and into the 80s, and

ii) WUTV Channel 29.  

Lots of Canadian households and their respective eyes regularly tuned into these two stations...

 

June 21, 2021 3:00 pm  #68


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

Interesting article and find Radioactive!  Was the signal strong enough from the CN back then to penetrate buffalo to overtake their own stations?  I hear these days with digital its not but this again is a different time and era just like the radio world.

 

September 4, 2021 11:46 am  #69


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

tvguy wrote:

A bit of firsthand knowledge.  A couple of things about FCP vs Master FM..  First, the Master FM at CN Tower was (originally) designed for omni-directional stations. Most of the stations in the early 70's were relatively grandfathered, in terms of their coverage - case in point CKFM, CHFI and CHUM FM.   CKFM, if memory serves me correctly was over 210 kw at the old CIBC building - and omni directional.  It's last "home" was on the "new" CIBC building at a relatively high power and omni-directional.   CHFI was at an even higher power from the CFTO tower in Agincourt.  So when they moved to CN Tower the Class "C" grandfathered stations were around 40 KW on Master FM.  CHIN FM was at a lower power because it is "B" class.  The Department of Transport (later ISED) wanted all Toronto area TV and FM stations to be clustered at one point.  When CKO came on the air, - which required a directional antenna at 99.1, it operated from FCP and various other stations followed. Many were licesned after the CN Tower master FM was built.    My recollection was that the CN Tower went into operation in 76, but the Master FM antenna was designed months or a couple of years before it was installed up there.  Antenna installation(s) took place in '75.

One other odd recollection.  I remember going up to the roof level of the "new" CIBC building when I worked at CKFM.  (before the windows were installed within the building) I took a portable TV up there and did some TV DXing.  This was when the CKFM antenna was being installed and the building was under construction.  That's a long time ago, a number of years before the CN tower went into operation.

 Most of the stations at FCP have highly directional antennas to protect U.S. and other Canadian stations on the same or adjacent frequencies.  Several were "drop in" frequencies - like 88,9 CIRV which originally operated at 88.7 (WBFO's frequency) and the arboriginal radio station on 106.5 (WYRK Buffalo).  (Classical) 96.3 "relocated" from an office tower in Mississauga and is directional to protect 96.1 Buffalo (formerly WJYE).   Other stations have literally been shoe-horned into the site, with specially designed antennas - i.e. 96.7 CFZM-FM-1. There have already been major changes to several FM antennas at FCP due to Safety Code 6 problems.  The problems included high levels of radiation over cooling towers on the roof. Several stations were required to re-design their antennas, to throw less RF onto the rooftop.  This antenna work occurred in May 2009 and included CFMZ, CBLA-FM and CJBC-FM.  There were some other Safety Code 6 issues when the outside (granite) cladding started falling from the face of the building.  There was a multi-year project whereby sidecars of workers (in side cars) were slung over the side of the building.  RF levels had to be reduced for some stations (that over and above the antenna design changes).  I believe that RF levels were reduced on "working" nights to accommodate the crews on the rooftop.  Every addition of an HD signal notches up RF levels a few hundred (or thousand) watts.  My recollection is that some prospective tenants proposed adding height to one or more of the towers, so that rooftop level RF could be reduced, or at least the stations requiring power increases, would not add to the RF at rooftop level.  Bottom line, FCP is basically "maxed out".  The remaining TV transmitters, which I believe are standby/auxiliary to the CN Tower (main) UHF transmitters, have not added to the SC6 problems.  This has been an FM issue, primarily.  I think that had Evanov been granted changes for Proud FM or CIDC at FCP, there would have been some significant power reductions that would have been required of incumbent stations.  The evanov applications were turned down on multiple occasions.  Skywave a big yellow board contributor may have additional first-hand knowledge.  FCP is also a very expensive place to do business. It is to my knowledge the only antenna site in the world, where the landlord charges an excess fee to stations for each HD subchannel that they use, after the main HD channel.   That surcharge works out to be around 10% of the cost to transmit from the building.   So, for example if the site rental fees were $160K per year for the main signal, the HD-2 would cost an additional $16K , plus some additional nickel-and-dime fees, including additional costs for the hockey-puck sized GPS antenna which is needed for HD operation.  To my knowledge there aren't similar HD2, HD3 etc costs anywhere in North America - by other landlords.  An FM station with 3 HD signals will be pushing $200K per annum, plus additional fees for standby generator, and other sundry costs imposed by Brookfield.   Clearly if you're operating an omni-directional station, CN Tower is a better location, particularly the "business" environment.  The building management at FCP has if I can use a phrase "take no prisoners" negotiating tactics.  And of course they have a number of tenants who couldn't relocate at any cost that would make business sense vs. the annual increases in costs charged by Brookfield.

There may be a new alternative to First Canadian Place in our future. This proposed building has a spire that looks like more than an architectural feature. If built, the tower will be slightly higher than FCP, even with potentially fewer occupiable floors.
 

 

September 4, 2021 12:16 pm  #70


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

Tim Brown 2016 wrote:

There may be a new alternative to First Canadian Place in our future. This proposed building has a spire that looks like more than an architectural feature. If built, the tower will be slightly higher than FCP, even with potentially fewer occupiable floors.
 

If the rent is lower, you can bet the first radio station to jump ship will be CIUT. They're always whining about how high the tower rent for their radio station is. 


RadioWiz & RadioQuiz are NOT the same person. 
RadioWiz & THE Wiz are NOT the same person.

 
 

September 4, 2021 2:10 pm  #71


Re: HD Radio In Toronto

I hope CHFI, CHIN, CJRT, CHBM, CHUM, and CKFG launch hd radio soon.
IT would be cool to hear what they use the hd output for and what subchannels they launch.
What are your predictions about the formats/programing that they will put on the subchannels?