HIFI (TV channel)
|Launched||March 12, 2006|
|Owned by||High Fidelity HDTV (2006–2013)|
Blue Ant Media (2013–present)
|Broadcast area||National |
|Formerly called||Treasure HD|
|Bell TV||Channel 1623|
|Shaw Direct||Channel 132 / 632|
|Available on many Canadian cable systems||Check local listings, channels may vary|
|Bell Aliant Fibe TV||Channel 450|
|Bell Fibe TV||Channel 1660|
|Bell MTS||Channel 1603|
|Optik TV||Channel 551|
HIFI is a Canadian English language high definition Category B television channel owned by Blue Ant Media. Although marketed as a channel that focuses on music, art, and film; the channel primarily broadcasts a variety of general entertainment programming such as films, comedies, dramas, reality TV, and documentary and human interest television series that focus on travel, adventure, and more.
In August 2005, John S. Panikkar (co-founder of the channel's original owner, High Fidelity HDTV), was granted a licence by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to launch ArtefactHD, described as "a national English-language Category 2 high definition (HD) specialty programming undertaking... devoted to collectors and their collections, and would showcase creations, celebrate beauty, intricacy, aesthetics and the merits of an object for its own sake. The programming would also include tours of museums and galleries open to the public and behind-the-scenes, celebrate unique architecture and design, and highlight the dedication and knowledge of the committed collector."
The channel launched on March 12, 2006 as Treasure HD. Much of its programming was purchased and its name licensed from Rainbow Media, original owners of the now defunct Voom HD Networks, who owned the originating Treasure HD in the United States. Like its American counterpart, the channel originally broadcast factual programming on primarily collectibles, artifacts, and other art-based programming. Programming included such programs as Secrets of the Exhibit, Art in Progress, Treasure Divers, and Romance in Stone. When the American channel, Treasure HD, ceased broadcasting in 2009, the Canadian channel broadened its programming to include music (primarily focusing on the classic rock, jazz, classical music genres) and films.
The channel was rebranded as HIFI in August 2011. The rebranded channel would put an emphasis on music and art-based programming, including films, exemplified by its slogan, music+art, later abandoned in 2016 when the channel began to air increasing amounts of general entertainment programming. On December 21, 2011, HIFI's parent company, High Fidelity HDTV, announced that it had entered into an agreement to be purchased outright by Blue Ant Media, majority owners of Glassbox Television and minority owners of Quarto Communications. While initially purchasing 29.9% of the company, the remaining 70.1% was purchased after CRTC approval.
- Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2005-364 CRTC 2005-08-02
- Bell ExpressVu Invites Canadians to Explore New High Definition Oasis and Visual Treasures BCE press release 2006-03-13
- High Fidelity rebrands Treasure HD to HIFI Cartt.ca 2011-09-06
- Blue Ant Media Enters Agreement to Acquire High Fidelity HDTV CNW press release 2011-12-21
- Blue Ant Completes Acquisition of High Fidelity HDTV, Broadcaster Magazine, August 1, 2012.
- Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2012-419 CRTC 2012-08-01