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ABC/ESPN reverse mirror explained.

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Programming' started by gobucks100, Oct 20, 2007.

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  1. gobucks100

    gobucks100 AllStar

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    Sep 12, 2006
    There is a lot confusion of how the the ABC/ESPN reverse mirror works. Why does D* black out some games on ESPNHD or ESPN2HD while local cable companies are not blocking out games on ESPN or ESPN2. I will try to explained based on how I understand the situation.

    With this year, the Big 10 signed a new contract with ABC/ESPN where the 12:00 and/or 3:30 PM games will be shown nationally. In Big 10 country, the game will be shown regionally on ABC while the rest of the country sees the game on on ESPN or ESPN2. ABC/ESPN is not allowed to show the national feed on ESPNU but since next weeks Michigan is listed on ESPN Classic, it looks like ABC/ESPN can use ESPN Classic for the national feed although I am not sure if local ABC stations in MI will be showing the Michigan game.

    ABC presently only has the equipment to show 2 games in HD in the 12:00 and 3:30 time frame. Since the B10 will be on ESPN or ESPN2 for all of the country outside of the B10, the B10 has gotten one of the sets of HD equipment as ABC/ESPNHD wants HD on their ESPNHD channels.

    ABC picks one of the other games to be on the 'reverse' side of the mirror. Usually this game is also in HD, as it will be shown in HD on cable companies' ESPNHD channels where the Big 10 game is being shown on the local ABC Station in HD.

    With the 2 sets of HD equipment that ABC/ESPN has for the 3:30 time slot, both data feeds are available for local ABC stations and local cable companies to pick up to show on their channels.

    In Big 10 country, the local ABC channel has the right to the B10 game so ESPN can not show this game in this area. On the local cable company (in Big 10 Country), they pick up the reverse mirror data feed from ABC/ESPN to show on their local ESPN HD channel. In the case of this week, that game would be the FSU game. Based on feedback to previous posts, the cable companies in Big 10 country are showing both games in HD on local ABC station and ESPNHD.

    On D*, they ONLY HAVE a NATIONAL FEED for ESPN and ESPN2. They do not have the ability to have channel 206 be one game in one part of the country and another game in another area of the country. In the area of the country that the local ABC station has rights for the Big 10 game, D* MUST (repeat MUST) block the ESPN or ESPN2 national feed. Since the local cable company in B10 country is showing both sides of the mirror on their systems, D* should have the rights to show both games (in HD) in the areas where the local ABC station is showing the B10 game. What D* is doing right now is showing the reverse mirror game in SD on an ESPN alt channel in the area that has the Big 10 on local ABC blocking out the ESPNHD National feed.

    If the B10 contract did not exist, then the reverse mirror game (FSU game this week) in Big 10 country would only be available on Gameplan. Free in ACC country and Gameplan for the rest of the country. With this contract, Big 10 country pick ups the reverse mirror game for free which in past years would of only been available on Gameplan.

    From the previous posts, it looks like most cable companies showing the B10 game on ABC had the HD feed of the reverse mirror game on their ESPNHD channel. Based on this, it appears that D* could show the reverse mirror game in HD on an ESPN Alt channel but presently does not appear to have the HD capability in place. This ESPN ALt channel would only be available in areas showing Big 10 game on ABC like the SD version of the ESPN alt channel is available now. Since local cable companies are showing the reverse mirror game in HD, there does not appear to be any license issues between D* and ABC/ESPN for the HD feed. Since the ESPN and ESPN2 channels are still mpeg2 channels may be the reason that D* has not set up a ESPN Alt channel in HD. Maybe next year.

    Hope this helps address some of the confusion. Let me know if any on my observations look incorrect.

    Here are some good sites that I use to see what college football is on TV.

    http://mattsarz44017.tripod.com/football2007.html ( All games- very informative site)

    http://www.hdsportsguide.com/cfb.php (HD games only)

    http://www.lsufootball.net/tvschedule.htm

    http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/gameplan/index Use the blackout link to see if games are local or on gameplan . They dont update the black out maps until late in the week.

    Jeff
     
  2. tonyd79

    tonyd79 Hall Of Fame

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    The only thing I am not sure about in your explanation is if anyone gets the reverse feed in HD. Even the mattsarz site you listed only shows MSU/OSU as HD for ESPN today.

    I have seen no reports that the second game is in HD on ESPN anywhere.
     
  3. Power and Glory

    Power and Glory Cool Member

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    Oct 11, 2007
    In my Comcast area we had the MSU/OSU on our local ABC. ESPN2 had the MIA/FL.ST game while ESPN2HD was blacked out.
     
  4. lwilli201

    lwilli201 Hall Of Fame

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    :new_Eyecr

    I need an asprin after reading that.

    :scratch: :icon_stup
     
  5. tonyd79

    tonyd79 Hall Of Fame

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    Supports my theory that ESPN2 does not have a second HD feed....
     
  6. gobucks100

    gobucks100 AllStar

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    Sep 12, 2006
    ABC/ESPN did have the FSU game in HD as I saw highlights of that game on Sportscenter and College Football Final and they were in HD. The data feeds were there, the local cable companies and D* only need to pick up that input and broadcast it out on the channel they have assigned to show it.

    It comes down to the local cable companies and D* having both the license to broadcast that HD feed and the capability to show it on their systems.

    I ask the question a few weeks back on what was on local B10 cable companies during the reverse mirror game. I got very limited response as most people here who have D*, do not also have cable HD as well. Of the few that did respond, some stated they did have the reverse mirror game in HD on cable while other cable companies did not.

    http://www.dbstalk.com/showthread.php?t=104739

    Since if appears that some cable companies were showing the reverse mirror game in HD, the license to show can be obtained. Since I have not seen a ALT HD ESPN channel yet listed in the guide, l lean toward D* has not set up the capability yet. It may be due to ESPNHD and ESPN2HD are meg2 and they have limited HD capacity on the mpeg2 birds and do not want to get into the situation where ESPN broadcasts were on both mpeg2 and mpeg4.
     
  7. Earl Bonovich

    Earl Bonovich Lifetime Achiever

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    Also supports the notion, that something needs to be done... to the laws/rules of how all this works.

    As there really shouldn't be a reason why you need a "2nd" feed...

    You could have just tapped into ABC-NY for one game and ABC-LA for the other game...

    Since they are both ESPN/ABC broadcasts...
    But it all has to do with the advertising.
     
  8. kcn823

    kcn823 Cool Member

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    Oct 1, 2006
    I'm in NY and wanted to watch the FSU/Miami game, I tuned to ESPN2HD and saw that the game was blacked out. So I then tuned to channel 777 and purchased the game for $22. Are you saying I could have watched the game on ch 209 in SD for free? If that's the case then I'm going to fight the charges with directv, because I called them and they just said it was blacked out.
     
  9. millertime

    millertime Godfather

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    Sep 2, 2007
    Yes you could of watched for free but not on sd 209 it would of been 211 sd. I would fight it.
     
  10. Brett12

    Brett12 New Member

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    Nov 8, 2007
    Hey I have a question.. I live in Auburn, Alabama. It says I am getting the Ohio State game this weekend.. does this mean I get FSU-VT on ESPN?

    Thanks in advance..
     
  11. tuff bob

    tuff bob Icon

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    Mar 4, 2007
    or DirecTV could simply add ESPN HD alternates, like they did for the BTN. Problem solved!
     
  12. alevine1986

    alevine1986 Godfather

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    Jul 10, 2007
    This reverse mirror stuff is awful for people who are fans of Big 12 and Pac 10 teams. Since the regional HD will always big Big 10, ACC, or Big East, since those conferences have both ESPN and ABC contracts, as opposed to the Big 12 and Pac 10, whose cable contracts are with FSN. Therefore, the HD games will always be Big 10, ACC, or Big East. As a fan of the Longhorns, who get picked by ABC regional a lot, I never get HD games. I am now hoping we get picked by FSN, since ABC and versus almost never show the Big 12 in HD!
     
  13. Brett12

    Brett12 New Member

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    Nov 8, 2007
    Hey I have a question.. I live in Auburn, Alabama. It says I am getting the Ohio State game this weekend.. does this mean I get FSU-VT on ESPN?

    Thanks in advance..
     
  14. run2lax

    run2lax AllStar

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    Aug 24, 2007
    They used to carry alternate games on the alternate channels all the time until about a year or a little bit mroe ago.

     
  15. terryfoster

    terryfoster Godfather

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    You'll likely find the FSU-VT game on an ESPN alternate channel if it isn't on ESPN.
     
  16. Brett12

    Brett12 New Member

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    Nov 8, 2007
    What would an ESPN alternate channel be?
     
  17. rjdude

    rjdude Legend

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    Mar 8, 2005
    They show up in the guide right after the main ESPN channels and the channel info will identify them as alternate channels (they are only activated when ESPN offers the alternate feed(s)). If you don't see them in the guide, then you need to use the "All Channels" filter or add these channels to your personal channel lists.
     
  18. gobucks100

    gobucks100 AllStar

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    Sep 12, 2006
    If the OSU game is on your local ABC channel, then the main ESPNHD channel will be blacked out on D*. The FSU VT game should be on available on ESPN Alternate channel. I have seen posts in the past that they use channel 211.

    If you have access to local cable companies ESPNHD channel, where the OSU game is on local ABC channel, it would be interesting to know if the cable cable in showing the game in HD or upconverted SD on their ESPNHD channel.

    We have had discussions on if D* has rights to broadcast the reverse mirror game in HD or they have not implemented capability to broadcast the ESPN Alt channel in HD. If local cable company is showing FSU VT game in HD, then that points to me that D* has not implemented capability vs an issue with license to broadcast. The HD feeds are available for both games as local ABC stations in ACC country will broadcast the HD feed as can be seen in below link. The question is what is the reason D* is not showing both HD feeds on ESPNHD or ESPN alt channels.

    http://www.hdsportsguide.com/cfb.php

    You should be able to see it for free in SD. Prior to the new Big 10 contract, the only way you would of been able to see this game would of been ESPN gameplan where you pay for a game in picture quality below SD. I have not missed Gameplan at all this year.
     
  19. millertime

    millertime Godfather

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    Sep 2, 2007
    They should open up the alts in hd or open up 206 in upconvert at least its better than football in sd
     
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