Technical Question - Volume Changes - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Technical Question - Volume Changes

Subject: Technical Question

I get KFDA- News Channel 10 on the Dish Network system. I have
been increasingly aware of the difference in sound levels between the
program sound and "commercial"
sound decibels. I especially noticed it tonight while watching Ghost
Whisperer at 6:00 pm NM time. Is this a problem with my equipment or Dish
equipment or the sound transmission from your equipment? Let me know if
there is a remedy for this problem. Thank you.

Susan Conrad
Logan, NM

Updated Information from KFDA General Manager (4.24.08)

Our Engineering Department has been in direct contact with DISH Network to resolve the DISH  issues. Short Explanation: DISH picks up our signal over the air and then processes it and send it up to the satellite in space and then back to you the user. They can recieve our Analog signal or our High Definition Signal  Thad been using the analog signal with no issues, but the recently changed to using our HD signal without notifying us. The HD signal is adjusted different to optimize the audio experience over the air, not optimized for satellite usage and was never adjusted on their end to balance it back out. They have since switched back to our analog signal returning the audio levels to normal.

You should not experience any further low audio or great variance audio over your DISH network signal.

CBS has also made some great strides this week in normalizing their programming an commercials coming to us in HD as well.

I apologize for the uncomfortable experience, we are working hard to get it all right and for you to enjoy the programming in the best way possible.

NOTES:

1. DIRECT TV does not carry any local channels in analog or Digital or High Definition do they are not referenced above.

2. On February 17, 2009 we will turn off our anaolg (old style over the air signal) by Federal mandate. You can continue to recieve your local channels through FREE Digital over the air reception with the new TVs that have a digital tuner built in or you can buy a Digital Set top box to recieve our new Digital signal on any of your old Television sets, or subscribe to Cable or DISH network. (DIRECT TV is not an option to get our local DIgital or anaolg stations in this area.)

Original RESPONSE From KFDA General Manager Brent McClure (4.17.08)

Susan,

Thanks for your email. I attended a meeting in Las Vegas this week with the CBS engineering team. The same question was raised and here was their explanation:

They admitted there is a drastic change due to the dynamic range difference in commercials and programming.

In short the programs take advantage of the diverse differences in low and high volume levels to create drama, suspense and energy. The show you referenced is a show that stays in the low range of audio to create suspense. Commercials on the other hand push the volume to the max level and maintain that level with little variation through out the entire commercial to get attention. CBS is working on balancing this issue by using less "dynamic range" on the programming and controlling the commercials better.

On the local level we maintain an industry standard for volume levels for our local commercials and any programming we can control. 

DISH network to my understanding takes our station from the over the air signal. If this is correct the equipment you now have should be passing our signal as we are producing it. This being said, they do take our signal and process it so it can go to the satellite in the sky and then they process it as you receive it in your home.

There are many industry standards being changed with the DTV process.

High Definition /Digital TV, Digital audio, Dolby Surround, Stereo and all the other things they are inventing are now being normalized.

I anticipate many improvements throughout 2008.

I hope this helps. Thanks again for understanding, patience, willingness to email us and support of our station.

Brent McClure

General Manager

KFDA-NewsChannel 10/KZBZ/KTMO/LATV

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