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older VCR and digital converter

Joyce

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I have read that in Feb 09 one will need the convertor box to convert digital to my old VCR in order to record programs.I do have cable and know that otherwise I will not need the box. I have since not been able to locate that particular info and am confused about the need for the box to record digital programing to my analog VCR.My friends insist that I am wrong. Any help?
 

Autoeng

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If you can record cable shows now you will be able to record them in 2009. Over The Air transmissions of television signal is what is changing. Cable and satellite are already transmitting in digital.

This television receiver has only an analog broadcast tuner and will require a converter box after February 17, 2009, to receive over-the-air broadcasts with an antenna because of the Nation’s transition to digital broadcasting. Analog-only TVs should continue to work as before with cable and satellite TV services, gaming consoles, VCRs, DVD players, and similar products. For more information, call the Federal Communications Commission at 1-888-225-5322 (TTY: 1-888-835-5322) or visit the Commission’s digital television website at: www.dtv.gov.


What about my VCR, DVD player, camcorder, and gaming console? Will I be able to use them with a digital television set?

Yes. Digital television sets are “backward compatible,” meaning existing analog equipment (VCRs, DVD players, camcorders, video games, etc.) will work on digital TV sets. However, their video will only be displayed in the maximum resolution that is available with each analog product. Manufacturers are producing a number of different connectors to hook equipment together and improve picture and sound quality when DTVs are used with existing analog equipment. Check with your retailer to determine the types of connectors that will work with your equipment.
 

dougef

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IMO, this whole thing has been very poorly communicated. There are thousands - maybe millions - of people who think they need these converters who don't need them at all. Only people with an antenna on the roof or using "rabbit ears" on top of their TV need the converter. Period. Why didn't the government make this clear?
 

JeffW

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I'm surprised that cable, satellite, and FIOS haven't advertised the heck out of the fact that, if you obtain their programming, there is absolutely no change needed in any of your television equipment. [I'll exclude the fact that if you go from OTA to a service which requires a set top box, there will be a change in how you use it, but it will all still work.] Maybe they don't want to appear exploitive (would be very easy that to think that they are the ones that pushed for the DTV change, in order to get them more customers).

Jeff
 

wackymother

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A friend told me that her cable bill now has a disclaimer on it, basically saying that they're not responsible if her cable or her TV or any of her peripherals don't work after the changeover. What???? Do you love these monopolies or what?
 

PigsDad

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A friend told me that her cable bill now has a disclaimer on it, basically saying that they're not responsible if her cable or her TV or any of her peripherals don't work after the changeover. What???? Do you love these monopolies or what?
I read an article a while ago that said several cable companies were using the OTA digital conversion as an excuse to stop providing analog channels on their cable systems. You see, with most cable systems you do not need a cable converter box in order to tune into the lower numbered channels (2 - 110?). But the cable companies want to stop that service and sell their "digital" package, or charge customers for a cable box rental fee. So with all the confusion with regard to the OTA broadcasts going digital, the cable companies are playing on the ignorance of their customers and claiming that their cable signal has to go full digital as well.

But that is a bunch of hooey -- the cable companies already take a digital feed from satellites (for WGN, for example) and convert it to an analog signal and modulate it to channel 35 (for example). No need for a cable box to tune than channel, as any TV with an NTSC tuner can tune to it.

Kurt
 

JeffW

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One definite advantage for phasing out analog channels is to free up space for digital channels, both standard def and hi def. If I'm remembering correctly, I think 6 SD digital channels, or 2 HD channels, can be squeezed in the same bandwidth as one analog channels. Plus, in many areas, all the analog channels are already broadcast in digital format.

Jeff
 

UWSurfer

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The reason stations are being required to turn off their analog over the air signals is to free up spectrum which the government is reselling to other users, like cellular telephone companies and over the air broadband providers.

Frankly the broadcasters have been running ads, crawls and spending a tremendous amount of air time informing consumers (US) that those with antennas will be effected and those with cable or satellite are OK. There was a statistic I read a couple years back that only 16% of the country gets its TV signal directly over the air via an antenna.

Tons and tons of info out there.... One very real problem is converter boxes for those using their old gear and over the air antennas only appeared late in the first quarter of this year.
 

wackymother

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There was a statistic I read a couple years back that only 16% of the country gets its TV signal directly over the air via an antenna.

Tons and tons of info out there.... One very real problem is converter boxes for those using their old gear and over the air antennas only appeared late in the first quarter of this year.
Yep, we're in the 16 percent. We're definitely the oddballs around here. When we got the converter boxes and started trying to use one, my DH started watching for TV antennas on houses around here. When he saw one, he would watch for the neighbor who lived there and he would ask about the antenna. Every single one said that it was an old antenna that they hadn't gotten around to taking down--that they had cable or a dish now. We couldn't find anyone else in the 16 percent.
 

pedro47

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I have a Sony portable tv, will it still work after Feb 09?
 

UWSurfer

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I have a Sony portable tv, will it still work after Feb 09?
That depends. If you are using Rabbit ears or an external antenna to get your signal, no not without a converter box.

If you have it connected to cable TV or a satellite TV provider you'll be fine.
 

Joyce

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I wish I had asked TUG before I went out and bought 3 converter boxes for my 3 old VCRs... one for my Summer home and 2 for the winter. The tech guy from our newspaper said it would be needed to record! I don't have my slips so I guess I can't return them. Thankfully, I was able to use the gov't credit card. You guys and gals are amazing!! Thanks
 
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