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May 31, 2015 1:24 pm  #1

Omni 1 signs-off!

This is probably only of interest to the geeks among us who enjoy reliving a bit of TV history.

For the past couple of days, Omni 1 has been off air overnights between midnight and 5:00.  I noticed this late Friday night when going trough my Bell program guide and it said that OMNI 1 was off the air.  I tuned in and, lo and behold, test and tone.

So, last night, I set my PVR for that time period and OMNI 1 did a proper sign-off with technical details (I'm not sure how accurate they are, anymore) complete with national anthem.

They will apparently be doing this again tonight (Sunday) at midnight.  According to my program guide, this won't be happening next weekend.

OMNI 2 does _not_ sign off.  Go figure.



May 31, 2015 1:49 pm  #2

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Ironic in a way, since the old Channel 47, in its CFMT Dan Iannuzzi days, used to be home to the great "All Night Show," with Chuck the Security Guard and his faithful cameraman companion, Ryerson. Which of course meant they never signed off. 

I used to love station sign-offs when I was a kid. Must have been something about being up that late to see them in the first place. Plus, as a DXer with a rotating antenna, it was always interesting to see what might be there once the TX was turned off. What amazes me about these in looking back is how long some of them are. It's almost like they'd have to sign on again in five minutes after the thing is done.

Here are a few classics:

CFTO (voiced by Dave Devall):



TVO: (voiced by John De Lazzer)

CHCH: (I think that's Bill Knapp at the mic)


May 31, 2015 2:55 pm  #3

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Yeah, I was a fan of sign-offs as a kid.  There was just something special about hearing the authoritative voice of Bill Knapp on CHCH doing it that made it, well for a lack of better word, special.

I always found it interesting how the Buffalo stations would all play the Canadian anthem at the end of their broadcast day.

And CFTO was the only station to play "God Save The Queen."  In fact, up until the 90's, they used a version with a very young queen elizabeth that must have done shortly after her coronation.


     Thread Starter

May 31, 2015 3:08 pm  #4

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Found one more that was a little different.

WIVB always had a tribute to the flag as par of their sign-off.  It starts about 5:40 into the video.


     Thread Starter

May 31, 2015 3:09 pm  #5

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

It used to always make me chuckle that for all "City-TV' was Toronto's station, and had Tommy Ambrose all over the place singing about people city, their sign-on music was Neil Diamond's America .


Madness takes its toll.  Please have exact change.

May 31, 2015 7:04 pm  #6

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

OMNI 1 being off air overnight has been happening for awhile...  at least the last 3-4 months or so....

CKCO-TV had a sign-off which cross promoted the sister radio stations...CFCA FM 105, and CKKW AM 1090.  

(cue into 2:42 on the progress bar)



May 31, 2015 11:11 pm  #7

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

I have to agree. CFMT has been signing off for at least 3-4 weeks now, perhaps longer.
I have no idea why they couldn't fill that time with infomercials or religious whatever.

Last edited by Radiowiz (June 1, 2015 3:45 am)


June 1, 2015 8:18 am  #8

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Radiowiz wrote:

I have no idea why they couldn't fill that time with infomercials or religious whatever

someone please step in here & explain


June 1, 2015 9:49 pm  #9

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

I was always amazed with the transmission power of Global's Uxbridge Ch. 22 transmitter...  5 million watts !!! (I assume that was ERP).   Talk about a flame thrower!!!

Another little known fact about the original Global CKGN transmitter build... not all of the Tx sites were installed and operating for the January 6th, 1974 launch and sign-on... although the majority of Global personnel thought that they were complete.  The story is that not all of the contractors or sub-contractors were being paid...  so the tower sections and antennaes just laid in the fields as they were shipped from RCA.  This was noticed in the early spring of 1974.  

Apparently the Paris and Uxbridge transmitters were the first to be installed, and were there for the initial sign-on. The other original sites eventually were completed and operational.

Then there was the "fire" at the Cottam Ch. 22 transmitter.... but that is another story....


March 13, 2021 8:54 am  #10

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Maybe they might want to air Chuck the Security Guard show again, when it MTV (Multi Cultural TV) 

I spent many an all night's watching this show as  a young whipper snapper.


Last edited by Muffaraw Joe (March 13, 2021 8:57 am)

The world would be so good if it weren't for some people...

March 13, 2021 9:20 am  #11

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

RA: After CBLT signed off, were you able to receive WTVH Syracuse and/or WEWS Cleveland? My parents, in Oakville, could get both. Syracuse [Fuzzy] Cleveland [snowy, but watchable]


March 13, 2021 8:11 pm  #12

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

I never got Cleveland on Channel 5 (although WUAB on Channel 43 frequently came in on UHF) but I do recall pulling in WJW on Channel 8 once. Not sure about Syracuse. The one "get" I recall was WPTV from West Palm Beach, Florida. Skip could do some amazing things in those analogue days. That was certainly one of them!


March 13, 2021 9:01 pm  #13

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Florida was a semi-regular visitor in my house a long time ago. WPBT (which I think back then was called WTHS) Channel 2 in Miami came in a lot on "those days" when conditions were perfect. 


March 13, 2021 9:03 pm  #14

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

RadioActive wrote:

Florida was a semi-regular visitor in my house a long time ago. WPBT (which I think back then was called WTHS) Channel 2 in Miami came in a lot on "those days" when conditions were perfect. 

I got WPBT once in London, in colour, during the day and with nothing more than indoor rabbit ears. I was surprised to get that instead of WJBK Detroit on 2, which is a lot closer.

That was in the summer of 2007, which I recall having some strong distant FM reception. I was able to pull in Detroit and Toronto FMs on my car radio, which was unusual; usually I got nothing from outside the London area, Sarnia at the furthest.

Last edited by MJ Vancouver (March 13, 2021 9:06 pm)


March 13, 2021 9:23 pm  #15

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

There was one day - just one - in 1977 that I'll never forget. I'd just gotten home from high school and it was one of those hot, moist thunderstorm-in-the-air type near summer days. I turned on the radio in my bedroom and almost every local station was gone on FM. In their place was a wonderous tour of the United States, that included outlets from Miami, Alabama (WABB Mobile, IIRC), Ohio, Pennsylvania, Louisiana and more. 

Once I got as many of those as I could, I rushed over to the TV in my parent's den, which had a rotor, turned the antenna in several different directions and got another amazing amalgamation of places, including Florida, Texas, Louisiana, Denver and many more. 

I've never seen another day like that one and of course now that everything on TV is digital, I never will again. But what an afternoon that was for a DXer!


March 13, 2021 9:43 pm  #16

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

E-skip on low-band VHF TV was actually a pretty consistent phenomenon until the end of analog TV. We had the advantage here in Rochester of nothing local below channel 8, and while it was easy enough to see 2 and 4 from Buffalo and 3 and 5 from Syracuse, they were weak enough that incoming e-skip could roll right over them.

Once the season started (usually May/June), if I was working at home I'd point my rooftop antenna southward and leave the TV on channel 2 at the start of the day. That was just enough off-axis to WGRZ that I could see Buffalo, but weakly. As soon as skip started rolling, I'd see interference bars rolling over the Buffalo signal, and if it was a good day, it would turn into pretty clear pictures. 

Typical skip distance is between 700-1400 miles, and from here that meant Miami and Orlando were usually the first signals to come in on 2. If it was a good day, the e-skip would get above channel 2 and I'd see 3 from Tampa or Pensacola, 4 from Miami and sometimes Jacksonville, and 5 from West Palm Beach. (I have nearby FM transmitters that tend to make anything on channel 6 hard to receive.) 

And if it was a good opening (which wasn't every day, but fairly common in early summer), it would tend to roll its way west and then north - 2 from Baton Rouge, 4 New Orleans, 2 and 4 Little Rock, 3 Eufaula OK, 2 Tulsa, 4 and 5 OKC were all pretty common. Sometimes it would continue north through the middle of the Plains states and even get up into Manitoba. 

Some openings got up into FM, though those were (and are) a little rarer, and the dial here is so crowded it was hard for DX to punch through the locals. Occasionally the openings would go east instead, and I'd see the big low-band signals from Newfoundland and Nova Scotia. 

There also tended to be a winter gasp of e-skip, usually right around Christmas, though it was weaker and briefer.

And there were some unusual openings that got either closer or more distant than the usual band. Best I ever had here was channel 3 in Sterling, Colorado, which is close to 1700 miles from Rochester. Closest I ever got with e-skip was channel 4 in Rock Island, Illinois, which is very close for e-skip. 

I miss those days!


March 14, 2021 5:43 pm  #17

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

RadioActive wrote:

"Dear KOA-TV Listener".


On a side note, in this digital age, why can't I seem to let go of all my QSL cards from the 1960s?


March 14, 2021 6:11 pm  #18

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

I have some photos of my 1970's E Skip. WPBT, WEDU. WBRZ, KFDX, KSNC, KSNW, KNOP,  and KTVY [now KFOR]  I would love to post them. Lessons please. I have a grade one knowledge of computers. Some of the photos, WPBT and WEDU are full colour with no ghosting. No sign of WGRZ either.


March 14, 2021 6:48 pm  #19

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

I'd love to see them. With permission from the Board Admin. at the Oldies Music Board site (a wonderful place to visit if you're into vintage rock and roll), here's the link that explains how to do it in simple illustrated steps. It sounds like you have the .jpgs already on your machine, so you'll want to follow the second scenario - titled Uploading a picture from your own PC.

If you still have trouble let me know and I'll try and find a way to help.

Oldies Board - How To Put Up A Picture  


March 14, 2021 9:20 pm  #20

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Here's a really good City TV classic sign off. Note the security guard at the end!  Great classic! lol


Last edited by Radiowiz (March 14, 2021 9:21 pm)


March 15, 2021 8:16 am  #21

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

I've been puzzled why City TV still has non English programs on the weekend ( Italian programs  mostly from what I can recall) when the 2 Omni channels are supposedly designated for that specific purpose. Long term deal of some kind, or......?


March 15, 2021 11:25 am  #22

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Canadian Analog CKCO CTV TV-2 Received in Tampa, Florida 
CKCO, CTV affiliate from their translator facility atop a 939 foot tower located in central Bruce Peninsula, along the south-west shore of Georgian Bay.

Last edited by markow202 (March 15, 2021 11:26 am)


March 16, 2021 7:28 am  #23

Re: Omni 1 signs-off!

Norman peters wrote:

I've been puzzled why City TV still has non English programs on the weekend ( Italian programs  mostly from what I can recall) when the 2 Omni channels are supposedly designated for that specific purpose. Long term deal of some kind, or......?

While I agree the content should perhaps move to Omni, both Omni stations may be filled with content that is already arranged with Rogers to remain as is.

I thought CHIN had, and still has a special arrangement with City TV week-end mornings. 
The original arrangement was with CHUM group, and Rogers continued it.