Category Archives: Rescan Alert!

The FCC spectrum auction is over: What it means to Houston-area viewers

(To avoid confusion I will use the term “frequencies” to refer to physical channel numbers and “channels” to refer to the individual program streams. For example: Channel 14, KETH, broadcasts on frequency 24.)

The Federal Communications Commission recently completed the first reverse auction of spectrum space, which moved several channels out of the TV band and reassigned them to wireless communications. As a result of the auction, stations broadcasting on frequencies above 36 will have to relocate to lower frequencies.

It was a challenge to work out all the channel moves, but in the end, all the UHF frequencies that are available for assignment in the Houston market will be occupied. Some frequencies will not be available in this area. Frequencies 16-18 are reserved for public safety broadcasting (police and fire dispatch). Other frequencies are too close to frequencies being used in adjacent markets and cannot be assigned to stations here.

In the auction, low-power stations were not protected and most were displaced by full-power stations. However, Class A low-power stations were protected and participated alongside full-power stations.

In the Houston area, of the 17 full-power and 2 Class A low-power stations, 11 are remaining on their correct frequencies, and 8 will be shifting to different frequencies between December 1, 2018 and April 12, 2019. No stations will be entering into channel-sharing arrangements.

Here’s a summary of what’s going to happen in Houston:

Frequency 7, KDHU-LD – low VHF, not impacted
Frequency 8, KUHT – no change
Frequency 11, KHOU – no change
Frequency 13, KTRK – no change
Frequency 15, KVVV-LD – fate unknown; not available for full-power due to interference from KFDM in Beaumont
Frequency 19, KTXH (channel 20) – no change
Frequency 21, KVQT-LDdisplaced by KZJL
Frequency 22, KUVM-LD (channel 10) – displaced by KTMD
Frequency 23, KLTJ (channel 22) – no change
Frequency 24, KETH (channel 14) – no change
Frequency 26, KRIV – no change
Frequency 28, KUGB-CD – no change
Frequency 30, KCVH-LD – displaced by KXLN
Frequency 32, KPXB (channel 49) – no change
Frequency 34, KUVM-CD – moving to frequency 20
Frequency 35, KPRC (channel 2) – no change
Frequency 36, KFTH (channel 67) – no change
Frequency 38, KIAH (channel 39) – moving to frequency 34
Frequency 39, KZHO-LD (channel 38) – out of band
Frequency 41, KUBE (channel 57) – moving to frequency 31
Frequency 42, KTBU (channel 55) – moving to frequency 33
Frequency 43, KHLM-LD – out of band
Frequency 44, KZJL (channel 61) – moving to frequency 21
Frequency 45, KXLN – moving to frequency 30
Frequency 46, KBPX-LD – out of band
Frequency 47, KYAZ (channel 51) – moving to frequency 25
Frequency 48, KTMD (channel 47) – moving to frequency 22

Displaced and out-of-band LPTV stations can apply for a new channel assignment in the VHF band, attempt to share with other stations, or go off the air.

So here’s how the new broadcast band will look:

Frequency Call sign PSIP (virtual ch)
8 KUHT 8
11 KHOU 11
13 KTRK-TV 13
14 KBTX, Bryan 3
15 KFDM, Beaumont 6
16 reserved, public safety n/a
17 reserved, public safety n/a
18 reserved, public safety n/a
19 KTXH 20
20 KUVM-CD 34
21 KZJL 61
22 KTMD 47
23 KLTJ 22
24 KETH-TV 14
25 KYAZ 51
26 KRIV 26
27 KBTV, Beaumont 4
28 KUGB-CD 28
29 KITU, Beaumont 34
30 KXLN-DT 45
31 KUBE-TV 57
32 KPXB-TV 49
33 KTBU 55
34 KIAH 39
35 KPRC-TV 2
36 KFTH-DT 67

Comet touches down on KIAH

Good news for science fiction fans! Comet, a new digital subchannel promising “popular favorites, cult classics, and undiscovered gems”, has premiered on KIAH 39.3.

The 39.3 position has been missing since Universal Sports signed off a few years ago.

Stargate and The Outer Limits feature prominently on the channel’s launch schedule. Check out the web site for a full schedule.

Buzzr spins into life on KTXH 20.4

Fremantle’s new digital channel Buzzr has launched on Fox-owned stations nationwide, including KTXH 20.4 in Houston.

Here’s a look at the channel’s schedule:

WEEKDAYS (All times Eastern)
6A/6:30A Family Feud
7A/7:30A Tattletales
8A Child’s Play
8:30A Body Language
9A Blockbusters
9:30 Card Sharks
10A/10:30A Match Game
11A/11:30A Family Feud
12P/12:30P Super Password
1P/1:30P Press Your Luck
2P Child’s Play
2:30P Body Language
3P Blockbusters
3:30P Card Sharks
4P/4:30P Match Game
5P/5:30P Family Feud
6P/6:30P Super Password
7P/7:30P Press Your Luck
8P/8:30P Let’s Make a Deal
9P/9:30P Match Game
10P/10:30P Tattletales
11P/11:30P Let’s Make a Deal
12A/12:30A Match Game
1A/1:30A Tattletales
2A-4A “Buzz Til Dawn” (To Tell the Truth/What’s My Line/I’ve Got a Secret)
4A-6A “Buzz Til Dawn” (To Tell the Truth/What’s My Line/I’ve Got a Secret)

Saturday (All times Eastern)
6A/6:30 Family Feud
7A/7:30 Tattletales
8A Child’s Play
8:30 Body Language
9A Blockbusters
9:30 Card Sharks
10A/10:30: Stanley on the Go (E/I)
11A-1P: To Tell the Truth/What’s My Line/I’ve Got a Secret
1P-3P: To Tell the Truth/What’s My Line/I’ve Got a Secret
3P: Child’s Play
3:30: Body Language
4P: Blockbusters
4:30: Card Sharks
5P/5:30: Family Feud
6P Child’s Play
6:30 Body Language
7P: Blockbusters
7:30: Card Sharks
8P-11P: Buzzr Time Machine (5 to 6 shows in a 3 hour span from the same decade)
11P-2A: Buzzr Time Machine (5 to 6 shows in a 3 hour span from the same decade)
2A/2:30A: Family Feud
3A/3:30A: Family Feud
4A/4:30A: Super Password
5A/5:30A: Super Password

Sunday: (all times Eastern)
6A/6:30A: Match Game
7A/7:30A: Match Game
8A/8:30A: Let’s Make a Deal
9A/9:30A: Let’s Make a Deal
10A/10:30A: Dog Tales (E/I)
11A/11:30A: Animal Rescue (E/I)
12P/12:30P: Super Password
1P/1:30P: Super Password
2P/2:30P: Match Game
3P/3:30P: Match Game
4P/4:30P: Family Feud
5P/5:30P: Family Feud
6P/6:30P: Press Your Luck
7P/7:30P: Press Your Luck
8P-11P: Monster Buzz (Monster Garage/Monster Garage/Monster House)
11P-2A: Monster Buzz (Monster Garage/Monster Garage/Monster House)
2A/2:30A: Press Your Luck
3A/3:30A: Press Your Luck
4A/4:30A: Match Game
5A/5:30A: Match Game

Justice (Network) to be served starting Tuesday

KHOU has started running promos for the new Justice Network, which Gannett stations are picking up across the country.

Fans of Bounce, on 11.2, need not worry about their channel getting bounced. Justice Network will air on a new subchannel, 11.3. The new subchannel hasn’t been provisioned yet, so a rescan will be needed next Tuesday in order for you to be able to receive the new network.

Where oh where has my Qubo gone?

Viewers may have noticed recently that KPXB channel 49 has lost its subchannels. Main ION programming remains on channel 49.1, but Qubo, ION Life and infomercials disappeared from 49.2 through 49.4.

KPXB also carries the Airbox subscription service. To make room for more bandwidth for Airbox, the ION subchannels have moved down the dial to low-power sister station KBPX-LD, channel 46. This will make these channels harder to receive in most of the area, since KBPX’s signal doesn’t reach as far as KPXB’s.

You’ll now find Qubo on 46.2, ION Life on 46.3, ION Shop on 46.4, QVC on 46.5, and HSN on 46.6.

KUBE gets Cozi with classic TV; KFTB goes dark

NBC Universal’s classic TV channel Cozi TV has found a Houston home on KUBE 57.5. The channel was launched earlier this year on NBC-owned stations, expanding to other groups such as London Broadcasting’s KCEN in Waco, KAGS in Bryan-College Station, and others.

Some TV listing services had shown 57.5 to be affiliated with the “Soul of the South” network that is scheduled to launch on Memorial Day.

Cozi TV is currently being shown in “squish-o-vision”, indicating a misconfiguration of the encoder.

In channel disappearances, the Fort Bend-focused “KFTB” airing on KVVV 15.6 appears to have folded up shop as quickly and quietly as it began. The channel now shows a “for lease” screen.

KTXH fires up 20.2 and 20.3

As previously mentioned, Fox-owned KTXH channel 20 has now turned on its two subchannels, and it looks like TitanTV was right on the money.

20.2 is dark for now, pending the launch of “Movies!”

20.3 is carrying a standard-definition 4×3 “squished” version of MundoFox, which continues in HD on KUVM-CD channel 34.1.

It’s alive! ALIVE! “Zombie” KQHO comes to life, plus more channel changes

There’s lots of channel changes tonight, so grab the remote and your scorecard and let’s start scanning.

The big news tonight is that one of Houston’s “zombie” stations has finally come to life! KQHO-LD is broadcasting over channel 20, former frequency home of KTXH, and is identifying with its former analog channel number (from back when it was alive in Beaumont), channel 56. KQHO is transmitting from downtown Houston along with its sister, KZHO.

Other channel changes to look for:

KUVM-LD 10.4 adds QVC, and Revenue Frontier infomercials slip down to 10.7.

KVVV has found a tenant for 15.7. The Perfect Creation Network (281-330-0273 or 832-893-7433) is running a promotional loop heralding an April launch with home shopping, news, movies, talk and Christian programming.

Thanks also to Bryan S. for the tip on KHLM 43.4 switching to infomercials.

Finally, KUVM-CD 34.3 RTV moves down one slot to 34.4, making way for QVC in 34.3. Also, 34.2, lately TheCoolTV, is now showing color bars and no PSIP short name (the seven-letter tag you see when tuning in to the station).

The subchannel shuffle

There are some new subchannel spottings this week on the Houston dial.

KVVV channel 15 has dropped EduSat from 15.8, marking that channel for lease. (Contact information on the dial page.) African-American-oriented Distinction TV has moved from KUGB 28.5 to KVVV 15.5.

Running a sizzle reel (more like a simmer reel) on KVVV 15.6 is KFTB, targeting Fort Bend County with “family programming, local content, sports, events and entertainment.”

LATV has moved from full-power KYAZ 51.6 to low-power KUGB 28.6.

KZHO 38.4 and 38.6 are airing an online radio station called “Manà, Un Sonido Diferente”.

New on KBPX 46.3 is Ion’s shopping channel, Shop TV. ShopTV won’t fit on Ion’s main station, KPXB, due to the Airbox MPEG-4 paycast.

KTMD 47.3, Soi TV, has gone off the air on all Telemundo stations nationwide. Its only air coverage now is on low-power stations in New York and Los Angeles.

KYAZ 51.5 has switched from Global TiVi to NT Entertainment. 51.6 is now showing infomercials.

And finally, KZJL 61.3 has turned on a test pattern.

TheCoolTV now on 34.2, RTV on 34.3

Thanks to Eman for the tip… KUVM-CD has picked up music video channel TheCoolTV and added it to channel 34.2.

Fans of RTV can now find it on channel 34.3.

Edit: I typoed the channel number last night. Apologies to those who went looking for RTV on 43.3.)