|Channels||Digital: 19 (UHF)|
|Owner||Gray Television |
(Gray Television Licensee, LLC)
First air date
|July 8, 1953|
Former channel number(s)
Call sign meaning
|"Watch Madison Television"|
|HAAT||414.8 m (1,361 ft)|
Public license information
WMTV (channel 15) is a television station in Madison, Wisconsin, United States, affiliated with NBC and The CW. The station is owned by Gray Television, and maintains studios and transmitter facilities on Forward Drive on Madison's southwest side.
WMTV signed on the air on July 8, 1953, on channel 33 and was an affiliate of NBC, ABC and DuMont. However, it has always been a primary NBC affiliate. In 1956, WKOW-TV, which had the CBS affiliation, picked up the ABC affiliation from WMTV after losing CBS to then-new VHF station WISC-TV, thus resulting in WMTV becoming solely affiliated with NBC.
In 1961, WMTV switched channels from 33 to 15, where it remained until analog broadcasting ceased just before midnight on February 17, 2009. The station's over-the-air broadcasts are now on digital channel 19, though it is found through PSIP on virtual channel 15.
The station's channel 19 signal is also used by Chicago's WGN-TV and WXMI in Grand Rapids, Michigan, causing interference between it and those two stations in the easternmost and southern portions of their coverage area, mainly in Walworth County, which is just outside the Madison market (though WXMI's signal is limited by the Kettle Moraine range west of Jefferson County).
On October 16, 2010, WMTV became the second commercial TV station in Madison to produce all of its newscasts in high definition, the first being WISC-TV. On October 18, 2010, the station also began airing its flagship syndicated programs Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune in HD.
WMTV's studios have been located on Forward Drive on Madison's southwest side since the station launched in 1953. The station's original studios were utilized until a new facility at the same address opened in late October 2016, eight months after ground was broken (the old studios were demolished for parking).
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|15.1||1080i||16:9||WMTVNBC||Main WMTV programming / NBC|
|15.2||720p||WMTV-CW||WMTV-DT2 / The CW|
WMTV-DT2 carried local weather mixed with The Local AccuWeather Channel on its second subchannel from the subchannel's 2007 launch until January 1, 2014, when it became affiliated with WeatherNation TV. WMTV .3 launched on April 1, 2013, carrying Antenna TV.
On September 12, 2016, WMTV added The CW to its second subchannel, the result of an affiliation deal between Gray Television and The CW that renewed CW affiliations throughout the Gray chain and added the network to WMTV and three other stations. WeatherNation TV would relocate to new subchannel 15.4 on September 12, 2016, the same day The CW was added to subchannel 15.2. WMTV replaced WBUW as Madison's CW affiliate at the time of that station's affiliation expiry.
In summer 2021, WMTV's subchannel suite expanded to six streams with the June addition of StartTV to 15.5 and, on August 2, relocation of WeatherNation TV to 15.6. The latter move made way for the addition of MeTV on 15.4 (WMTV inherited MeTV's affiliation from WKOW).