Kent Hatfield's blog

Update: NTIA Coupon Program Extended to March 3st. 2009

 Well, as you can see from the title... NTIA Coupon Program Extended to March 3st. 2009.

If you have not requested a coupon for purchase of a set-top converter box, the deadline has been extended.  Call 888-388-2009 or visit  Remember it takes four to six weeks for the coupons to arrive.


16 X 9 Programming & channel 21-4

On December 17th WXXI started converting all programming from a 4x3 aspect ratio to a 16x9 ratio... this means that programs viewed on a 4x3  (old style set) will be letterboxed.  This means the picture will be smaller and have black bands at the top and bottom.  Some programs are still being fed to WXXI from PBS already in a letterbox format this adds even more 'black' area on the sides.  If the viewer is using a set-top box, there is a feature that allows the viewer to 'zoom-in' to improve the picture size.

DTV Converter Coupon Program Ends Soon!

Over the next few days WXXI and the other broadcasters in the Rochester region will be working to inform all of the coming analog televison shutoff on February 17th.  One of the most important aspects of this conversion is the availibility of coupons to offset the price of the set-top converter boxes.  This program will not take any more requests for coupons after December 31th.  So, If you have been putting off the coupon reques, NOW IS THE TIME...  It takes only a few minutes...

FCC Selects Rochester for 'Extra Attention' prior to the DTV transition

The Rochester New York region has been selected as one of more than 40 regions in the US that will benefit from additional digital television transition assistance. Rochester was chosen because of the high numbers of over-the-air viewers in the region. The assistance will be in the form of outreach programs, on-air ads and a high visibility campaign to encourage viewers to sign up for the set-top-box coupons, purchase the set-top-boxes and install them well prior to the February 2009 deadline. Much More later…

DTV - Interesting Notes

Over The Air DTV channels
As some, if not all know... The actual channels that the DTV stations currently utilize for broadcast are not the same used for analog broadcast. The channels are mapped using a Virtual Channel Map that is passed to your DTV receiver when the channels are scanned. This data provides the analog and digital frequencies as well as the data to setup the extra channels that some stations broadcast.

Occasionally, a channel scan will not find one or more stations… Try tuning the channel manually using the table below.

Time Moves ON!

With February 2009 and the analog shutoff pending... Are you ready? Take the test at If you need a settop converter box, coupons for a $40 discount are available from the federal government. There are several methods of ordering the coupons listed on the web site. Remember those TV sets that are in guest rooms, play rooms and in the kitchen... as these also may need a settop DTV Converter.

More later...