Damn you, Indecision!

OTA HD Problems…GRRR!

Actually, I only have one problem — the OTA HD feed for Chicago (I don’t know if that is further broken down by regions of Chicago/suburbs or what) for ABC is randomly (or not so randomly) switching, showing the content of channel 7-3, which is all weather all the time, instead of the regular 7-1 feed.  Sure, you can say it’s more likely that it’s user error, or equipment failure, or even HD-recording software failure.  And before tonight, I would’ve believed you.  But tonight my OTA HD feed went down EXACTLY during the timeslot for Lost.  Mind you, it may still be a coincidence, but I am skeptical.

I had actually had issues with 7-3 becoming 7-1 before, and I hadn’t noticed it for a while because none of the TV I was watching recently was on ABC.  I was mainly watching shows on NBC and Fox that had already started their seasons.  Well, last weekend I went to see what the score was for the Ohio State v. Iowa football game (not rooting for the Hawkeyes since I’m an Iowa State alum :D), and realized that the programming on ABC was wrong.  I couldn’t figure out what was wrong; I rebooted my Mac mini, but that didn’t help.  Finally figured out that I should probably rescan for channels, and IIRC, it helped restore regular programming.  I had to manually add 7-1 to my program guide for some reason, but no matter, it was fixed.

Fast forward to tonight, around 7:50-something, and I tuned in to ABC in anticipation of the Lost season premiere.  Normally we would just let it run for at least 20 minutes or a half hour to build up some buffer in order to forward through commercials.  Luckily I was too excited to see the show that I wanted to watch it in “real time”, otherwise we would’ve had a nasty surprise after waiting a while to start watching.  A couple minutes before it was supposed to start, I gasp in horror as I see the ABC weather feed rear its ugly head again.  I was so flustered that I couldn’t actually remember what I did to fix the problem.  The hubby and I just ran upstairs to the loft to watch Lost on our old SDTV…  I was so pissed!  Luckily it didn’t ruin my enjoyment of the Lost season premiere, although I was still irritated not to be able to watch it in HD. 😛

Later on, after watching Lost and the show after it, The Nine, I went downstairs to delete the bogus recordings.  I noticed that the filesize for Lost was much less than that of the The Nine recording, which was strange since they were both hour-long shows.  I checked out the Lost recording, which was a full hour of weather reports, then saw that The Nine recorded properly, from beginning to end!  WTH???  At first I just thought it was a really inconvenient coincidence, but after stewing about it some more, now I suspect that perhaps ABC Chicago “blacked out” the HD Lost feed, for whatever lame anti-copy-infringement reason…  It’s likely that this is not the case, because if they were really blacking out the show to prevent people from distributing recordings online, they would’ve blacked out all OTA HD feeds all over the US.  But I saw that many people on the AVS Forums were able to watch the premiere in HD just fine.  Nevertheless, I am wondering a couple things:

1.  Were you able to see the Lost season premiere via over-the-air (OTA) HD tonight?  I’d be interested to hear from any Chicago-based viewers, especially.

2.  Has anyone heard of this happening, where a local HD feed will “black out” certain OTA HD programs (not sports)?

It may just be that for some really weird reason, my EyeTV 500 tuner got freaked out for the duration of Lost because of some glitch in the signal, but it just seems too coincidental, especially since the subsequent recording of The Nine was just fine.  GAH…  I’m going to check out Elgato’s support website to see if any similar situations have been observed, and if there’s a fix.  Otherwise, I just hope that next week I’ll be able to see Lost in HD with no problems.  Or else I’m going to be pissed. >_<!

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