WATS Happenings

Official Newsletter of the
Waco Amateur Television Society (WATS), Inc.

Volume 7, Issue 3, March 2002


The President’s Agenda

WATS Director’s Meeting Agenda March 21, 2002

1.   Call to order

2.   Approval of the Board Minutes

3.   Approval of the Treasurer's Report

4.   Old Matters

     Members desiring “snail mail” version of WATS Happenings

     Field test at HOTARC Meeting Site at TSTC

     Any other Old Matters

5.   New Matters

     April Meeting with HOT at David Boehner's home

     Race for the Cure

6.       Meeting Adjourn

WATS Member Meeting Agenda March 21, 2002

1.   Call to order

2.   Approval of the Member Minutes

3.   Treasurer's Report as approved in Board Meeting

4.   Old Matters

5.   New Matters

6.   Meeting Adjourn

7.   Program: Tour of KWTX HDTV facilities

Meeting Notice
Special Location:
at the KWTX Studios on Highway 6
Thursday March 21, 2002
Directors 7:00 pm, Members 7:30 pm

Mark Your Calenders:
Our April meeting will be the 4th Thursday
6:30 pm, April 25, 2002
At the home of Dave Boehner K5HOT:
Featuring a hamburger cookout,
joint meeting with HOTARC, and tour of
the K5HOT QTH wonder world!


Come learn about HDTV…KWTX style!
by John Chamberlain, AC5CV

As you’ll read in the President’s Column, our President N5XAK has arranged for us to hold the March WATS meeting at the KWTX-DT studios—our local CBS affiliate. KWTX News Channel 10 is the first and, so far, only station in the Central Texas area to be broadcasting in High Definition Television (HDTV). KWTX-DT first went on the air on Friday, May 11th, 2001 at 5:10 PM. It began regular programming on Tuesday, May 15th, 2001 on Digital Channel 53.

Since going on the air, KWTX has received reports of solid reception from viewers as far away as North Austin. There is a small, but growing, audience of High Definition viewers in the Central Texas viewing area. One of those is our own Dave Boehner K5HOT, who has invited us to witness HDTV first hand in his home in April. Stay tuned for more information…

HDTV is received with an HDTV set, or through the use of a set top digital conversion box and a television set capable of displaying the HDTV format. KWTX-DT is broadcast on channel 53, or what may be displayed on a Digital set top converter as Channel 10.1.

HDTV is certainly the biggest breakthrough in broadcasting since color TV. It offers wider pictures with greater detail and clarity of motion pictures. Compared to standard television (NTSC), the HDTV image has twice the luminance definition—vertically and horizontally—and is twenty-five percent wider. Standard television aspect ratio is 4:3 (four units wide, three units high)—the HDTV aspect ratio is 16:9: much closer to the average wide-screen image shown in movie theaters. But the biggest difference, and the greatest appeal of HDTV, is its clarity. True HDTV pictures are composed of 1080 active lines (1125 total) whereas an analog television displaying DVD program material can achieve a maximum vertical resolution of just over 500 lines. A laserdisc can produce around 400 lines of resolution as can satellite reception. A standard NTSC broadcast television signal results in a resolution around 300 lines and the lowest resolution analog format, VHS tape as played through a typical VCR, generates about 200 lines of resolution! The HD picture contains five times more information than does the standard television picture and is accompanied by multi-channel, CD quality sound. The difference in video and sound quality is dramatic.

Here’s an illustration of the differences in picture that you’ll realize with digital television.

There are many HDTV screens appearing on the market with hefty price tags! Let the buyer beware! For example, an HDTV set can actually tune, decode and display HDTV signals (720 vertical lines with progressive format or 1080 vertical lines with an interlaced format). An HDTV-ready set (also known as a display or monitor) is capable of displaying HDTV signals, but only with the assistance of a separate tuner box that can decode and send the full resolution HDTV formats to the HDTV-ready set. There are also DTV-ready sets that can accept input from a digital tuner but do not have high-definition screens. In other words, some digital television sets offer an integrated, one-product solution. Others are a two-part system. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages.

For more information about HDTV, check out these web sites:

   An HDTV FAQ:  http://www.avsforum.com/hdtvfaq/HDTV-FAQ.htm

   A source of HDTV info: http://www.hdpictures.com/

   Another source of HDTV info: http://hdtvinfoport.com/

   HDTV info simplified: http://www.howstuffworks.com/hdtv.htm

   A list of the growing number of HDTV equipment: http://www.hdtvgalaxy.com/hd.html


President’s Column

To my Fellow WATS Members

Well, it seems as though my optimism expressed in my February message fell, for the most part, on deaf ears. We had a quorum for the Board meeting, but a scant six members (and one visitor) at the Member meeting. Folks, this organization ain’t goin’ to make it without your participation.

Our March meeting will be held at the KWTX studios, we have been invited to hold the April meeting (together with HOTARC) at the home of David Boehner (K5HOT), and we have the Race for the Cure on April 27th. It would do this old heart good to see more than the usual five or six at these events.

KWTX TV has been for some time transmitting HDTV on digital channel 53. As noted above, we have been invited to hold our meeting this month at the KWTX studios at 6700 American Plaza. In case you don’t know where that is, it’s behind the American Bank building off the Highway 6 service road down a bit from Providence Hospital and the main Post Office. The Directors will meet in one of their conference rooms at 7:00pm with a short Member meeting to follow at 7:30pm, and then a tour of the KWTX HDTV facilities. Should prove to be interesting, so please come and join in the fun.

73 de John, N5XAK
WATS President

Waco Amateur Television Society (WATS)
Minutes of the Board Meeting
February 21, 2002

President John Gafford N5XAK called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm. Those attending were:

        John Gafford, N5XAK (President)

        John Chamberlain, AC5CV (Secretary/Treasurer)

        Horace Bushnell, W5TAH

        Norris Martin, KB5SLI

W5TAH pointed out an error in the Minutes published in the Happenings: it was the “2001” financial records that were audited, not “2002.” He moved to accept the minutes of the previous meeting with the correction, seconded by KB5SLI, and approved unanimously.

KB5SLI moved to accept the Financial Report as published in the happenings, seconded by W5TAH, and approved unanimously.

Old Business

   N5XAK reported that he sent all members and email asking for their preference concerning Happenings issued by e-mail or U.S. mail, and received zero responses. John agreed to try phone or U.S. mail.

   AC5CV reported on trip to Guaranty Bank. N5XAK and AC5CV were added to the authorized signature list for the WATS account. We also revised the account to include three authorized signatures rather than just two. We chose W5TAH, since his signature was already on file.

   N5XAK reported on a planned ATV transmitting field test 3-2-02 at the TSTC campus to see if we can get a picture to the repeater in preparation for an ATV program at a future HOITARC meeting.

   W5NCD is investigating possible capacitance problem with the Skycam camera’s remote interface.

New Business

   N5XAK reported his aim for 2002: Membership—trying to increase participation of current members and attract new members.

   At the invitation of Leon Cheney K5ZZM, N5XAK presented WATS and ATV to the Texas State Guard via their 2-meter net.

   AC5CV requested reimbursement of $18.92 for office supplies. W5TAH so moved, seconded by KB5SLI, and unanimously approved.

   N5XAK agreed to donate the cost of postage for dues reminder postcards mailed to all members.

N5XAK heard a motion by W5TAH to adjourn the meeting at 7:19 pm.

Submitted by
John Chamberlain, AC5CV
WATS Secretary/Treasurer


Waco Amateur Television Society (WATS)
Minutes of the Meeting of Members
February 21, 2002

President John Gafford N5XAK called the meeting to order at 7:30 pm. Attending were:

        John Gafford, N5XAK (President)

        John Chamberlain, AC5CV (Secretary/Treasurer)

        Horace Bushnell, W5TAH

        Norris Martin, KB5SLI

        Mike Ross, N5MVL

        David Bush, KC5UOZ

        Justin Martin, KC5KQL (visitor)

W5TAH moved to accept the minutes of the previous meeting as published in the Happenings; the motion was seconded by KB5SLI, and approved unanimously.

Old Business

   N5XAK read the treasurer’s report, and reported on the issues discussed in the Director’s meeting (see minutes of that meeting).

   N5XAK demonstrated X10 hoime automation equipment to the membersKC5UOZ reported on progress with the 147.24 repeater. Larry Bush W5NCD now has two repeaters at two tower sites! Wow! He hopes to have a tower climbing crew this Saturday (2-23-02) to install a second antenna midway up the 400-foot tower, resplice a broken connector, and repair the cable at the top of the tower.

New Business

   Marshall Mabry KD5IQ is unable to attend the meeting due to his chemotherapy schedule. Our thoughts and prayers are with Marshall and Mary.

   AC5CV reported that the special event Race for the Cure is scheduled for Saturday April 27. Please mark your calendars and get ready to support this event with ATV coverage.

N5XAK heard a motion by KB5SLI to adjourn the meeting at 7:48 pm.

N5XAK gave a presentation and demonstration of an assortment of X10 home automation equipment.

Submitted by
John Chamberlain, AC5CV
WATS Secretary/Treasurer




Financial Report

March 2002

Beginning Balance (1 February 2002)

    Credits:   $145.00 (dues)

    Debits:    None

Ending Balance (28 February 2002)



Outstanding (as of 3-17-02):

    Credit:    Deposits: $24.00

    Debits:    Check #366: $18.92


John Chamberlain, AC5CV
WATS Secretary/Treasurer



WATS Happenings is the official newsletter of the Waco Amateur Television Society (WATS), Inc., a non-profit organization, chartered by the State of Texas with registered offices at 3804 N 21A Street, Waco, TX.  Use of information contained herein is permissible, provided credit is given to the source. Edited and published by John Chamberlain, AC5CV.

2002 WATS Officers and Directors

President: John Gafford N5XAK, jgafford@clearsource.net

Secretary/Treasurer: John Chamberlain AC5CV, AC5CV@arrl.net

Director (thru 2004): Horace Bushnell W5TAH, W5TAH@aol.com

Director (thru 2003): Norris Martin KB5SLI, nmartin@tstc.edu

Director (thru 2002): Marshall Mabry KD5IQ, MabryM@aol.com