DTV Transition Resources and Info

6abc has switched to digital transmission.
June 18, 2009 12:04:21 PM PDT
Digital Television (DTV) is an advanced broadcasting technology that will transform your television viewing experience. DTV enables broadcasters to offer television with better picture and sound quality. It can also offer multiple programming choices, called multicasting, and interactive capabilities. To our viewers:
6abc will continue to answer your DTV Inquiry emails and phone calls, however the large number of correspondences we've received may prevent an immediate personalized response.

Problems watching 6abc

A number of viewers who use antennas to receive 6abc have encountered problems since we switched to an all-digital broadcast on Friday afternoon.

There are two reasons why you may be having problems.

1. Before the switch, 6abc's digital signal was on the UHF band. After the switch, the federal government assigned 6abc a frequency that is on the VHF band. Therefore, any antennas in your house need to be able to recieve the VHF band.

2. Before the switch, 6abc was given a digital signal which broadcasted at higher power. After the switch, 6abc began using its permanent digital signal, which brodcasts at a lower power. This frequency was assigned to 6abc by the federal government. Members of 6abc management and managers from the Disney company are in Washington, D.C. working with federal regulators seeking permission to broadcast at a higher power.

If you are using an antenna, 6abc is available on VHF Channel 6. Optimally, you should have a VHF/UHF antenna to receive all available digital television programming.

DirecTV subscribers should now be able to receive 6abc. If you can not, please contact DirecTV. Satellite and cable subscribers should not have to rescan their television sets.

If you are having problems now that the 6abc DTV switch has happened, Fill out this form in order to report your DTV transition issues.



In order to see our new signal you have to make sure you have the right antenna.

The antenna will need to have rabbit ears that receive the VHF signal.

Make sure the antenna is plugged into "antenna in" on your new converter box.

The next step: plug your television into the output of the converter box.

Make sure the converter box is plugged into a power outlet.

Check to make sure that the power light comes on if your converter box has one.

Once your converter box is on, turn on your television.

Press the "menu" button and scan the channels.

Wait a few minutes for this process to take place.

CLICK HERE for an expanded Step-by-Step guide, with pictures to guide you through the process.

Checklist for switching from analog to digital TV

AP Technology Writer
Here's a checklist to make sure you'll have TV reception after analog broadcasts end.
- Are all your TVs hooked up to cable or a satellite dish? If so, you're OK.

- Do all your TVs have built-in digital tuners? Most TVs bought in the last few years, including flat panels, have these. If they do, you're probably OK. But you'll need to force your TV to scan the airwaves to find all channels, because some are moving to new frequencies.

- Do you have an older TV without a digital tuner? You'll need a converter box.

- Do you have digital converter boxes hooked up to older TVs, and you get some but not all the channels you expect? You should force the box to re-scan the airwaves. Some converter boxes don't scan well, so you may have to key in the channel number manually. Check the box's directions, and look at to figure out which channels should be available in your area. Re-scan periodically to pick up stations that move frequencies after Friday.

- Still having problems getting all the stations you want? The problem may be your antenna. Outdoor antennas properly pointed toward a TV tower are preferable, but indoor antennas work if you're reasonably close to the tower. Antennas should be capable of receiving both VHF and UHF signals - some older ones are VHF-only, and some sold specifically for digital television are UHF-only. Modern indoor antennas are available from $40 to $100.


On the Net:
FCC troubleshooting guide:

Online Resources


    Find the nearest over the air digital antenna


    Walk-In Centers

    WHYY, 120 North 6th Street, Philadelphia, PA (215) 351-1200

    4322 North 5th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19140

    Franklin Mills Mall, 1455 Franklin Mills Cir., Philadelphia, PA 19154

    Cheltenham Sq Mall, 2385 Cheltenham Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19150

    Roosevelt Mall, 2327 Cottman Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19149

    The Gallery, 901 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107;

    Plymouth Meeting Mall, 500 W Germantown Pike, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462

    Mobile Clinics

    Northeast Community Center, 3850 Woodhaven Rd. Philadelphia, PA 19110

    South Philadelphia CC, 1100 Bigler St., Philadelphia, PA 19115

    International House, 37th & Chestnut, Philadelphia, PA 19144

    James Spring Memorial, 1845 W Huntington Street, Philadelphia, PA 19132

    Fishtown Recreational Center, 1201-1251 Montgomery Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19125;

    Bryant Baptist Church, 1140 South 19th St., Philadelphia, PA 19146

    Free DTV Converter Box Installations

    On June 12, all full-power television stations in the United States will stop analog broadcast service and transmit only digital signals. Consumers who do not subscribe to pay television services and have older, analog televisions will need to attach digital-to-analog converter boxes to their televisions in order to continue receiving over-the-air television programming.

    For a complimentary In-Home Installation of your DTV Converter Box Contact:

    Apollo Industries, LLC: 800-504-5677
    Deployment Essentials, LLC: 866-550-4388
    Installs Inc., LLC: 800-582-4250
    The Idea Guy, LLC: 888-898-8729
    R&D Training & Tech Service: 866-202-4596

    To make appointment with The Idea Guy for free DTV converter box installation -


    After the digital transition, 87.7FM will no longer carry 6abc's broadcast frequency. WPVI-TV does not operate a radio station - the 6abc signal heard on 87.7FM was a natural occurrence within the broadcast spectrum.

    The Transition to Digital TV

    The switch from analog to digital broadcast television is referred to as the digital TV (DTV) transition. In 1996, the U.S. Congress authorized the distribution of an additional broadcast channel to each broadcast TV station so that they could start a digital broadcast channel while simultaneously continuing their analog broadcast channel. Later, Congress set June 12, 2009 as the final date that full power television stations can broadcast analog signals. As of June 13, 2009, full power television stations will only broadcast digital, over-the-air signals. Your local broadcasters may make the transition before then, and some already have.

    June 12 is the final deadline for terminating analog broadcasts under legislation passed by Congress.

    Why are we switching to DTV?

    An important benefit of the switch to all-digital broadcasting is that it will free up parts of the valuable broadcast spectrum for public safety communications (such as police, fire departments, and rescue squads). Also, some of the spectrum will be auctioned to companies that will be able to provide consumers with more advanced wireless services (such as wireless broadband).

    Consumers also benefit because digital broadcasting allows stations to offer improved picture and sound quality, and digital is much more efficient than analog. For example, rather than being limited to providing one analog program, a broadcaster is able to offer a super sharp "high definition" (HD) digital program or multiple "standard definition" (SD) digital programs simultaneously through a process called "multicasting." Multicasting allows broadcast stations to offer several channels of digital programming at the same time, using the same amount of spectrum required for one analog program. So, for example, while a station broadcasting in analog on channel 7 is only able to offer viewers one program, a station broadcasting in digital on channel 7 can offer viewers one digital program on channel 7-1, a second digital program on channel 7-2, a third digital program on channel 7-3, and so on. This means more programming choices for viewers. Further, DTV can provide interactive video and data services that are not possible with analog technology.

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