Chicago’s WMAQ News Grows into All-HD

WMAQ-TV in Chicago (DMA no. 3), an NBCU-owned station, has completed the major phase of its local HD buildout and transitioned its studios (“Studio 5”) on Michigan Avenue and its NBC Tower news operation to 1080i.

Along with all its local newscasts, the station will air all of its specially produced local programming in HD, starting this Saturday, Feb. 9, with its special coverage of Chicago Auto Show, according to published reports. And from now on, SD will be the exception to the rule, not the other way around.

WMAQ’s HD broadcasts in the nation’s third-largest television market are now available terrestrially (and uncompressed) on Channel 5.1—as well as on Comcast cable (Channel 188); Wide Open West (Channel 203); Dish Network (Channel 6314); and DirecTV (Channel 962).