WOIO: Hello Akron, Canton

UPDATE 8/13/11 4:45 PM: Here’s a good coverage map link for WOIO’s new fill-in translator, courtesy of RabbitEars.Info’s Trip Ericson.

Use the standard Google map tools to zoom in and out, with solid green being the strongest coverage area…

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For many of those in the southern part of the Cleveland TV market, particularly in the Akron/Canton area, Raycom Media CBS affiliate WOIO/19 has largely been a cable/satellite-only channel since the digital transition.

That, of course, is because WOIO’s transmitter has pumped out a rather anemic power level (currently 9.5 kW) on a band known for poor reception on indoor antennas (VHF, RF channel 10, co-channel with CFPL/10 London, Ontario, Canada across Lake Erie).

That changed yesterday for many viewers who still rely on OTA reception.

WOIO launched its digital fill-in translator on RF channel 24 during the day on Friday.

The translator is located in the Akron antenna farm, with Rubber City Radio’s WONE-FM/97.5 and ION Television O&O WVPX/23, just north of what remains of Rolling Acres Mall.

Early reports show the facility is at least covering a large part of Summit and northern Stark Counties. It pumps out 11 kW, which is actually more power than WOIO’s main facility…but it’s not exactly equivalent, since power levels used on UHF make it a low-power facility.

For example, WVPX/23 at the very same site pumps out 1000 kW after a recent power upgrade. The 11 kW WOIO translator is not meant to replace the main WOIO RF 10 transmitter in the Parma antenna farm.

Here at the OMW World Headquarters(tm), we’re getting WOIO’s new fill-in translator with a clear signal using our existing indoor antenna. We’d appreciate reports from all over the market…we’re curious how far this signal makes it into Cuyahoga County, and how far south it penetrates into Stark County (we hear it at least hits North Canton with a good signal).

As always in the world of digital TV, you’ll need to rescan your digital tuner (either on a TV or a converter box) to pick up the new signal.

Note that WOIO has yet to file to cover the construction permit on the fill-in translator, so it’s quite possible they may need to take it down briefly to work on it…but the signal has been uninterrupted here since last night.

As with the main RF 10 signal, WOIO’s new fill-in does also carry Me-TV on 19.2.

And if your tuner can get both facilities, you’ll have two sets of 19.1 and 19.2, so go into your tuner’s menu if you’d prefer one over the other…

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19 Responses to WOIO: Hello Akron, Canton

  1. I am a fortunate resident of Akron who could pick up the original WOIO signal on a pretty regular basis, but having the fill-in transmitter will (hopefully) address those poor atmospheric condition days when I could get the Youngstown stations to come in better than Cleveland’s.

    Perhaps it is an anomaly of my setup but I am getting 3 19-1s and 2 19-2s with the ‘extra’ 19-1 signal being Youngstown’s WYFX-LD.

  2. Tim says:

    The new signal does not come into Slavic Village with a regular indoor antenna. The old signal can be locked in at times but does break up briefly from time to time.

    • Tim, this is meant to be a southern-area Akron/Canton-ish fill-in translator…you’d be very lucky to get this in Slavic Village. See the coverage map we’ve attached…

  3. We have another report that a reader in Bedford is getting 24 just fine with a UHF reflector 30 feet up, aimed towards Akron’s west side…and even getting it with the antenna aimed away from Akron to some degree.

  4. Yekimi says:

    I’m only 2.7 miles from the tower and it comes in OK, sometimes a little bit pixellated, but watchable.

  5. Dennis Beidle says:

    My wife is THRILLED to have her Channel 19 back, even if its the RF 24 signal. Fortunately, our antenna (we live in southwest Norton) was able to pick up WKBN almost consistently. Ironically, signal strength Saturday night on both our Samsung HD sets showed that RF 41 was the stronger of the two signals.

  6. Jim Nuznoff says:

    Wow, that tower has a crapload of antennas on it now…WVPX 23, WAPS 91.3 FM, K-Love 91.7, Air-1, 102.5, WONE 97.5, WOIO (24), NOAA weather 162.40….have I missed any?

  7. elvis says:

    Or you could just add channel 24 to your list of stations.

  8. MrCleaveland says:

    Congrats Akron and Canton. You now have access to Action Schlock News, with the added bonus of the world’s most hyperventilating weatherman.

  9. Ted Talevski says:

    Either the channel has gone down temporarily or I just have a really cheap TV/Antenna because I could not get the signal. Where is it supposed to appear? Channels 19.1 and 19.2 or channels 24.1 and 24.2?

    • Ted, 24 is still blowing in here at the OMW World Headquarters like gangbusters. It shows up as 19.1 and 19.2 via digital TV’s PSIP.

      If you get two sets of 19.1 and 19.2, it means you’re getting both signals (RF 10 out of Parma, RF 24 out of Akron).

      Where are you in relation to the Akron antenna farm, just north of (the nearly dead) Rolling Acres Mall, just up the hill from the I-77/Vernon Odom Blvd. exit?

  10. Ted Talevski says:

    One theory is that I may have picked the wrong scan option. My TV has an “Add on channel search” as well as an “Auto Channel search”.

  11. Ted, try the other scan…though “EzAdd” on my Zenith/Insignia worked fine.

    Not sure of the terrain issues between the antenna farm and Ellet…look at the top of this item for a link I added to Trip Ericson’s RabbitEars.info, and try to find your home on the map there. Green is better…

  12. Heck, in Ellet you may have a better shot at WKBN/27’s digital signal out of Youngstown. CBS on 27.1, Fox on 27.2…

  13. Ann V. says:

    I’m in Ellet and I get both 19.1 and 19.2 on the old frequency (plus 27 on good days). Of course, I have a newer antenna – it was still cheaper than paying for cable. I’m really enjoying the 19.2 line-up. Dear Mr. OMW, do you know anything about the extra frequencies showing up in the 23 block?

    • Dear Miss V.,

      Those are the subchannels for ION, the network which runs WVPX (the old WAKC-WAKR)/23.

      One is the kids “Qubo” network, another is lifestyle oriented ION Life.

      I’m curious if you’re also getting 24.x (19.1/2’s new Akron home), or if you just don’t need to rescan for RF 10…

  14. This is fine a dandy for you folks in the south. But I am Lakewood. When are they going to get a quality signal for us folks in Lakewood.

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