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Old cable lineups

Here's your place to reminisce about classic radio and television. Want to share memories of The Big 8? How about J.P. McCarthy? Do it here!
ftballfan
Posts: 684
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 6:38 pm

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by ftballfan » Wed Nov 18, 2015 9:22 am

Mega Hertz wrote:We had THE worst cable line-up known to man where I grew up. I don't remember the system name, but it was based in Sterling Heights, and when we got service in 1990, this was our line-up

2 WJBK
4 WDIV
5 Govt. Acc.
6 WKBD
7 WXYZ
8 WXON
9 CBET
10 WGPR
11 ESPN
12 Local Access
13 WTVS
16 PASS
17 The Movie Channel
18 Showtime
19 TBS
20 WGN
22 CNN
23 USA

That was IT. No MTV. No Weather Channel. Things changed in 1994. We had:

14 TNN
15 VH1
25 Nickelodeon
26 TNT
27 A&E
28 Family Channel
30 E! (Might still have been known as Movietime)
31 Lifetime
32 ESPN 2

Talk about a cheap-o line up!
Also no WADL!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk



organman95
Posts: 176
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2015 9:49 pm

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by organman95 » Sat Nov 28, 2015 2:01 pm

ftballfan wrote:Does anyone have old cable lineups to share?
I found a couple from 1990 (via a newspaper TV guide I found online): http://news.google.com/newspapers?ni...rontpage&hl=en (there likely are channels missing; the only channels listed are those in the guide itself)
Ludington, MI
2 - TNT
3 - WCMW (PBS) Manistee
4 - Nickelodeon
5 - WFRV (ABC) Green Bay
6 - WTBS (IND) Atlanta
7 - WPBN (NBC) Traverse City
8 - CBN Family Channel
9 - WWTV (CBS) Cadillac
10 - WGN (IND) Chicago
13 - WZZM (ABC) Grand Rapids
14 - Showtime
16 - The Movie Channel
17 - Disney Channel
18 - PASS
19 - HBO
20 - Cinemax
21 - AMC
24 - ESPN
25 - USA Network
26 - TNN
28 - WGVC (PBS) Grand Rapids
35 - Discovery Channel
36 - WLUK (NBC) Green Bay
Go back a bit to May 3, 1985:

2 - WBAY
3 - WCMW
4 - Nickelodeon / A&E
5 - WFTV
6 - WTBS
7 - WPBN
8 - CBN
9 - WWTV
10 - WGN
11 - CNN2
12 - Local Programming
13 - WZZM
14 - Showtime
15 - Playboy Channel
16 - TMC (U-49)
17 - Disney (U-50)
18 - P.A.S.S
19 - HBO (U-52)
21 - Home Television Network
22 - WMVS
23 - Music TV
24 - ESPN (U-64)
25 - USA (U-65)
26 - TNN (U-66)
27 - WITI (U-67)
29 - WGTU (U-69)
31 - WTMJ (U-71)
32 - CNN
36 - WLUK (U-76)



phillyb
Posts: 125
Joined: Mon Jul 31, 2006 2:36 pm
Location: Spring Lake, Michigan

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by phillyb » Sat Dec 05, 2015 11:00 am

The machine they used during the late 80's was developed up in Canada called the "Telidon", the graphics it produced looks similar to these videos below. Apparently the original use of this system was for two-way interactivity with the customers themselves, but The Blade only used it passively to present a slideshow of ads, news, weather and what-not. I do recall the programmers got a lot of pleasure out of designing ads such as an animated sequence where a paperboy on a bike is shown throwing a copy of The Blade at the camera. The execution though was very limited as objects and text had to be rendered in real time and it could taken nearly 30 seconds to a minute for the ad to be complete (normal text was much faster).
The technology used was called Teletext, and for a time in the early-mid 1980s it was the Next Big Thing in television technology. It used a few lines in the vertical blanking signal to send out text. There were at least two different, incompatible systems being tried out: Telidon, from Canada was one, another was a British import called Ceefax. There was also a third I think but I don't remember its name.

The idea was to have people subscribe to what would be a TV-transmitted "newspaper" which could be more up to date than what the printed papers offered. There was some limited interactivity, but with only a few lines in a TV signal to work with, that feature was never used much. Teletext was heavily invested in and hyped for a while. But the FCC, as it did at first with AM Stereo, refused to mandate a system and decreed that the "market" would decide which system would win out. And the public never got enthused about getting a newspaper through their TV. By 1988, the whole experiment had fizzled, Closed Captioning had come along to use some of the VBI lines which had previously been used by Teletext and the popularization of the Internet a few years later finished off whatever was left of Teletext.



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mtburb
Posts: 398
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 12:28 pm
Location: Wyandotte, 17 miles from Southfield, 38 miles from Oregon

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by mtburb » Sat Dec 05, 2015 2:27 pm

phillyb wrote:
The machine they used during the late 80's was developed up in Canada called the "Telidon", the graphics it produced looks similar to these videos below. Apparently the original use of this system was for two-way interactivity with the customers themselves, but The Blade only used it passively to present a slideshow of ads, news, weather and what-not. I do recall the programmers got a lot of pleasure out of designing ads such as an animated sequence where a paperboy on a bike is shown throwing a copy of The Blade at the camera. The execution though was very limited as objects and text had to be rendered in real time and it could taken nearly 30 seconds to a minute for the ad to be complete (normal text was much faster).
The technology used was called Teletext, and for a time in the early-mid 1980s it was the Next Big Thing in television technology. It used a few lines in the vertical blanking signal to send out text. There were at least two different, incompatible systems being tried out: Telidon, from Canada was one, another was a British import called Ceefax. There was also a third I think but I don't remember its name.

The idea was to have people subscribe to what would be a TV-transmitted "newspaper" which could be more up to date than what the printed papers offered. There was some limited interactivity, but with only a few lines in a TV signal to work with, that feature was never used much. Teletext was heavily invested in and hyped for a while. But the FCC, as it did at first with AM Stereo, refused to mandate a system and decreed that the "market" would decide which system would win out. And the public never got enthused about getting a newspaper through their TV. By 1988, the whole experiment had fizzled, Closed Captioning had come along to use some of the VBI lines which had previously been used by Teletext and the popularization of the Internet a few years later finished off whatever was left of Teletext.
The third one was actually called "Electra" or something like that. It aired during the overnight hours on TBS until 1993.


My furthest DTV tropo: KDKA Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at 202 miles for three days in January 2017 and a night in September 2017 with only an Antennas Direct C2V!

Current setup: Antennas Direct C2Max (2018-present)

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Some Guy from Toledo
Posts: 375
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2007 1:12 pm

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by Some Guy from Toledo » Sat Dec 05, 2015 6:21 pm

phillyb wrote:
The machine they used during the late 80's was developed up in Canada called the "Telidon", the graphics it produced looks similar to these videos below. Apparently the original use of this system was for two-way interactivity with the customers themselves, but The Blade only used it passively to present a slideshow of ads, news, weather and what-not. I do recall the programmers got a lot of pleasure out of designing ads such as an animated sequence where a paperboy on a bike is shown throwing a copy of The Blade at the camera. The execution though was very limited as objects and text had to be rendered in real time and it could taken nearly 30 seconds to a minute for the ad to be complete (normal text was much faster).
The technology used was called Teletext, and for a time in the early-mid 1980s it was the Next Big Thing in television technology. It used a few lines in the vertical blanking signal to send out text. There were at least two different, incompatible systems being tried out: Telidon, from Canada was one, another was a British import called Ceefax. There was also a third I think but I don't remember its name.

The idea was to have people subscribe to what would be a TV-transmitted "newspaper" which could be more up to date than what the printed papers offered. There was some limited interactivity, but with only a few lines in a TV signal to work with, that feature was never used much. Teletext was heavily invested in and hyped for a while. But the FCC, as it did at first with AM Stereo, refused to mandate a system and decreed that the "market" would decide which system would win out. And the public never got enthused about getting a newspaper through their TV. By 1988, the whole experiment had fizzled, Closed Captioning had come along to use some of the VBI lines which had previously been used by Teletext and the popularization of the Internet a few years later finished off whatever was left of Teletext.
Teletext had more of a following in Europe though, and still does for a few die-hards (noticed there's an Android app though none of the pages are in English as they're for mostly channels within the European continent (Germany has WAY too many).



tvradiojunkie
Posts: 133
Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 4:24 pm

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by tvradiojunkie » Tue Dec 29, 2015 2:09 am

Mega Hertz wrote:We had THE worst cable line-up known to man where I grew up. I don't remember the system name, but it was based in Sterling Heights, and when we got service in 1990, this was our line-up

2 WJBK
4 WDIV
5 Govt. Acc.
6 WKBD
7 WXYZ
8 WXON
9 CBET
10 WGPR
11 ESPN
12 Local Access
13 WTVS
16 PASS
17 The Movie Channel
18 Showtime
19 TBS
20 WGN
22 CNN
23 USA

That was IT. No MTV. No Weather Channel. Things changed in 1994. We had:

14 TNN
15 VH1
25 Nickelodeon
26 TNT
27 A&E
28 Family Channel
30 E! (Might still have been known as Movietime)
31 Lifetime
32 ESPN 2

Talk about a cheap-o line up!
What a shitty lineup!!! No Nickelodeon, even, until '94.



User avatar
Some Guy from Toledo
Posts: 375
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2007 1:12 pm

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by Some Guy from Toledo » Tue Dec 29, 2015 2:17 pm

tvradiojunkie wrote:
Mega Hertz wrote:We had THE worst cable line-up known to man where I grew up. I don't remember the system name, but it was based in Sterling Heights, and when we got service in 1990, this was our line-up

2 WJBK
4 WDIV
5 Govt. Acc.
6 WKBD
7 WXYZ
8 WXON
9 CBET
10 WGPR
11 ESPN
12 Local Access
13 WTVS
16 PASS
17 The Movie Channel
18 Showtime
19 TBS
20 WGN
22 CNN
23 USA

That was IT. No MTV. No Weather Channel. Things changed in 1994. We had:

14 TNN
15 VH1
25 Nickelodeon
26 TNT
27 A&E
28 Family Channel
30 E! (Might still have been known as Movietime)
31 Lifetime
32 ESPN 2

Talk about a cheap-o line up!
What a shitty lineup!!! No Nickelodeon, even, until '94.
That is shitty.



Splouge
Posts: 551
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2015 2:34 pm
Location: Melvindale

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by Splouge » Fri Mar 25, 2016 1:14 pm

I can only remember as far as about 2010. But the only changes I can remember were from 2011. That was the year I discovered Comcast had religious channels in the 390s, I think 399 was named "W33BY" but it was WDWO. Now its name is "WDWO1" WADL-DT2 Antenna TV was on 295 and abbreviated as "ANTEN" until it was removed for WADL's HD simulcast. Those are the only changes I can remember that Comcast itself made.


The only time when it would ever be necessary to be political is if our right to pursue our happiness is taken away. Otherwise, leave politics to politicians!

bmw
Posts: 1152
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2004 1:02 am

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by bmw » Wed Apr 27, 2016 11:02 pm

Kinda scary that I remember these channel numbers, having not had cable in over 20 years, but growing up as a kid in the 1980s here is what I remember:

Tawas/Oscoda

2 USA
3 QVC
4 TBS
5 HBO*
6 WGN
7 WNEM 5
8 PBS (WCMU)
9 Fox (I think 50)
10 WEYI 25
11 WBKB 11
12 WJRT 12
13 Advertising (with 104.7 WKJC background)
14 The Movie Channel*
15 Cinnemax*
16 Nickelodeon
17 The Disney Channel*
18 The Weather Channel
19 Showtime*
20 ?
21 PASS sports*
22 C-Span
23 TNT
24 Discovery

There were 36 channels total, but we got the cheap plan and there was a filter installed on our line with a cutoff at channel 23. I remember we could get Discovery just barely watchable.

The * channels were premium channels which we didn't pay for, but I remember a trick for mostly getting rid of the scrambling - put our TV on channel 4 instead of channel 3, and while that put all the channel numbers off by 1 on the converter box, with perfect fine-tuning on the converter box and on the tv you could almost get rid of the blinking lines.

I even remember our cable box:

Image



Splouge
Posts: 551
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2015 2:34 pm
Location: Melvindale

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by Splouge » Mon May 16, 2016 4:30 pm

bmw wrote:Kinda scary that I remember these channel numbers, having not had cable in over 20 years, but growing up as a kid in the 1980s here is what I remember:

Tawas/Oscoda

2 USA
3 QVC
4 TBS
5 HBO*
6 WGN
7 WNEM 5
8 PBS (WCMU)
9 Fox (I think 50)
10 WEYI 25
11 WBKB 11
12 WJRT 12
13 Advertising (with 104.7 WKJC background)
14 The Movie Channel*
15 Cinnemax*
16 Nickelodeon
17 The Disney Channel*
18 The Weather Channel
19 Showtime*
20 ?
21 PASS sports*
22 C-Span
23 TNT
24 Discovery

There were 36 channels total, but we got the cheap plan and there was a filter installed on our line with a cutoff at channel 23. I remember we could get Discovery just barely watchable.

The * channels were premium channels which we didn't pay for, but I remember a trick for mostly getting rid of the scrambling - put our TV on channel 4 instead of channel 3, and while that put all the channel numbers off by 1 on the converter box, with perfect fine-tuning on the converter box and on the tv you could almost get rid of the blinking lines.

I even remember our cable box:

Image
Are you sure that's not a Magnavox Odyssey?


The only time when it would ever be necessary to be political is if our right to pursue our happiness is taken away. Otherwise, leave politics to politicians!

k8jd
Posts: 363
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 3:35 pm
Location: Commerce, MI

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by k8jd » Sat Sep 17, 2016 9:09 pm

I recall, my first cable system, when I lived in Redford twonship, cost $6.95 a month and promised NO COMMERCIALS on the FREE movie channels and that was true for alittle while
!



organman95
Posts: 176
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2015 9:49 pm

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by organman95 » Fri Oct 07, 2016 8:33 am

bmw wrote:
The * channels were premium channels which we didn't pay for, but I remember a trick for mostly getting rid of the scrambling - put our TV on channel 4 instead of channel 3, and while that put all the channel numbers off by 1 on the converter box, with perfect fine-tuning on the converter box and on the tv you could almost get rid of the blinking lines.
Ahh the good 'ol days...LOL



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mtburb
Posts: 398
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 12:28 pm
Location: Wyandotte, 17 miles from Southfield, 38 miles from Oregon

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by mtburb » Tue Oct 30, 2018 9:08 am

Since this thread has gotten much popular, I'll just repost this. The original post to this was lost in today's data purge. Fortunately, it was cross-posted by someone else onto Radio Discussions.

Here's an early-90's Detroit-area vintage cable lineup for you to drool over. Originally taken from a since-deleted post (notice a pattern?) on the Downriver Things That Are Not There Anymore! Facebook group.

United Cable Woodhaven headend, 1991-92 (last lineup right before this headend was acquired by TCI)
2-WJBK (CBS)
3-Local Origination
4-WDIV (NBC)
5-Prevue Guide
6-Sneak Prevue
7-WXYZ (ABC)
8-QVC
9-CBET (CBC)
---basic lineup ends here---
10-HSN
11-ESPN
12-CNN
13-TNT
---premium lineup begins here---
14-Encore
15-Action Pay-Per-View
16-Pay-Per-View I
17-Pay-Per-View II
18-HBO
19-Showtime
20-PASS
21-Disney Channel
22-Cinemax
---premium lineup ends here---
23-USA Network
24-American Movie Classics
25-The Discovery Channel
26-Lifetime
27-Comedy Central
28-The Nashville Network
29-VH1
30-MTV
31-A&E
32-Nickelodeon
33-Mind Extension University (see below)
34-TLC
35-CNBC/FNN (shared)
36-The Weather Channel
37-CNN Headline News
38-E!
39-The Family Channel
---basic lineup continues here---
40-WNWO (ABC, Toledo) (see below)
41-C-Span I
42-C-Span II
43-TBS
44-Public Access
45-WXON (Independent)
46-WGN (national feed, Chicago)
47-Woodhaven Government
48-Woodhaven-Brownstown Schools
49-WGPR (Independent)
50-WKBD (Fox)
51-WTVS (PBS)
52-CICA (TVO)
53-WGTE (PBS, Toledo)
---basic lineup ends here---
54-KEC63 audio (NOAA Weather Radio)
55-Prevue Guide
56-Sneak Prevue
57-CTND/ACTS (see below)
---premium lineup continues here---
58-The Movie Channel
61-Spice Pay-Per-View/Travel Channel
---premium lineup ends here---
62-TBN

Gibraltar had this same lineup, Trenton, Riverview and Lincoln Park had almost the same lineup but without a couple of channels, WNWO among them.

Back then, this headend could be reached at 382-1500 (Lincoln Park) or 675-8300 (elsewhere in it's service area) and pay-per-view could be ordered at 675-8301...all of this, of course at this time, in area code 313.

And here's some channel notes:

33-Mind Extension University: Radio Discussions user "nightmanager" mentions: "MEU was operated by Jones Intercable first as a remote classroom, where a teacher would do lessons on screen and students would call in or otherwise communicate their answers and fax in their completed work. When I saw it, kids in remote places in Alaska seemed to be a main target. Aside from that, MEU also ran other programs aimed at adults. Mostly documentary stuff. And a few computer-oriented shows like "@Home" and reruns of exPBS Computer Chronicles if I remember right."
40-WNWO: United/TCI would continue carrying WNWO until 1997 when it was evicted as a result of WDIV imposing the Telecommunications Act of 1996 on this system. United also carried WTVG until the late 1980's when their headend tower's lone south-facing VHF antenna broke down and they decided it was cheaper to remove it.
57-ACTS: ACTS would later become Faith and Values, then Odyssey, it is now Hallmark Channel.


My furthest DTV tropo: KDKA Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at 202 miles for three days in January 2017 and a night in September 2017 with only an Antennas Direct C2V!

Current setup: Antennas Direct C2Max (2018-present)

ftballfan
Posts: 684
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 6:38 pm

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by ftballfan » Wed Oct 31, 2018 10:06 pm

Did WXYZ pre-empt ABC programming regularly in the late 80s/early 90s?



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WOHO
Posts: 998
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Location: Cumulus has killed 1470 KHz

Re: Old cable lineups

Post by WOHO » Wed Oct 31, 2018 10:45 pm

Buckeye Toledo rarely showed NBC4 programming, but ran WSPD-TV NBC programming, once in a while Buckeye would remember to flip the switch so you could see the Detroit news on 4. This was before 13 switched to ABC as WTVG. For some reason they almost never pre-empted WXYZ, which was cool so I could watch Wild Bill Bonds.



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