WATC-DT

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WATC-DT
WATC.png
Atlanta, Georgia
United States
Branding WATC TV 57
Slogan Atlanta's 57
Channels Digital: 41 (UHF)
(to move to 34 (UHF))
Virtual: 57 (PSIP)
Translators WKSY-LD 21.4 (UHF) Summerville
36 (UHF) Union City (construction permit)
Affiliations Religious Independent
Owner Carolina Christian Broadcasting, Inc.
(Community Television, Inc.)
First air date April 14, 1996 (22 years ago) (1996-04-14)
Call letters' meaning Atlanta Christian
Sister station(s) WGGS-TV
Former callsigns WATC (1988–2009)
Former channel number(s)
  • Analog:
  • 57 (UHF, 1996–2009)
Transmitter power 330 kW
Height 317 m (1,040 ft)
Facility ID 13206
Transmitter coordinates 34°3′59.3″N 84°27′16.7″W / 34.066472°N 84.454639°W / 34.066472; -84.454639 (WATC-DT)Coordinates: 34°3′59.3″N 84°27′16.7″W / 34.066472°N 84.454639°W / 34.066472; -84.454639 (WATC-DT)
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile
CDBS
Website www.watc.tv

WATC-DT, virtual channel 57 (UHF digital channel 41), is a non-commercial independent religious television station licensed to Atlanta, Georgia, United States. The station is owned by Carolina Christian Broadcasting. WATC's studios are located in Norcross, and its transmitter is located on Sweat Mountain in north-northwestern metro Atlanta.

WATC broadcasts programming from various Christian television networks, including FamilyNet, World Harvest Television, The Inspiration Network, The Worship Network, Golden Eagle and Shepherd's Chapel. All are transmitted in high definition at 1080i resolution.

History

In 1996, WATC was the last of the Atlanta media market's 13 full-power TV stations to sign on.

WATC granted permission to simulcast its signal on WSKC-CA channel 22 (also licensed to Atlanta), so that station could maintain its class-A television service status. WSKC-CA was located on the same broadcast tower as WATC, and could continue broadcasting in analog even after WATC went digital-only in February 2009. However, it was off-air as of March 2009, and remained so for most of the year. Since then, the station has moved to transmit digitally from a location near Norcross as WSKC-CD, and now airs Korean programming as it had previously done on analog before its affiliation with WATC.

Despite the DTV Delay Act extending the deadline from February 17 to June 12, the station ended analog service on the original date. On June 18, it changed its broadcast callsign from the unsuffixed WATC it has since the beginning, a few days after the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that TV stations were free to add or drop -DT as easily as -TV. Its 165 kW digital is significantly less than the 540 kW (20% of its previously-licensed 2698 kW analog) required to replicate its analog television broadcast range (by FCC regulations) at the same height. It has a construction permit for 750 kW, and requested special temporary authority for 330 kW.

It has also received a construction permit for a fill-in broadcast translator in Union City, Georgia (southwestern metro Atlanta) on channel 36, which was vacated by analog WATL TV. It will have the same callsign as its parent station (with no extra numerals or other differentiation, despite not being a same-channel booster) and could not be sold separately, as it is within a program the FCC created in 2009 in order to address the shortcomings of the ATSC digital broadcast television system. Since ATSC is very prone to multipath interference, this may be due to reflected signals from the skyscrapers of downtown Atlanta and midtown Atlanta, as well as terrain shielding of the Chattahoochee River valley and the hills around it.

WATC is seen in rural parts of northwestern Georgia on WKSY-LD subchannel 21.4, from Summerville.

The station formerly had another translator station, W42AO, licensed to Athens, Georgia. That station is now WAGC-LD. Owner Carolina Christian Broadcasting, Inc. also owns WGGS-TV, its sister station in Greenville, South Carolina.

In early May 2011, the station added other religious programming called "WATC too" on new channel 57.2.

On Comcast systems the station is carried on cable channel 2 in the Atlanta area, the actual location for the TV station WSB-TV is found on cable channel 3.

Digital television

Digital channels

The station's digital channel is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[1]
57.1 1080i 16:9 WATC-DT Main WATC programming
57.2 WATCTOO

Analog-to-digital conversion

WATC shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 57, on February 17, 2009, to conclude the federally mandated transition from analog to digital television.[2] The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 41, using PSIP to display WATC's virtual channel as 57 on digital television receivers, which was among the high band UHF channels (52-69) that were removed from broadcasting use as a result of the transition.

References

  1. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for WATC
  2. ^ List of Digital Full-Power Stations

External links

  • Official website
  • Query the FCC's TV station database for WATC
  • BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on WATC-DT
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