Questions linger over DTV switch

  • Article by: Randy A. Salas , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 6, 2008 - 6:01 PM

The Feb. 17 transition to digital television has raised concerns over antennas and other issues.

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blehblehblehOct. 6, 08 6:30 PM

If I were the Federal government, and the tv industry asked me for $500 million bucks in taxpayers money so they can switch to digital, I'd tell them to go dig a ditch.

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outziderOct. 6, 08 7:18 PM

Because the government stands to make much more than that by reselling the bandwidth previously used by analog television.

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mgutierresOct. 6, 08 7:39 PM

I subscribed to cable mainly because the reception in my neighborhood was lousy. There are a few cable channels I will miss (TCM and ESPN), but since I have both a digital TV and converter boxes for my 2 analog TVs, I couldn't be happier with digital. Show the stupid cable companies you don't need them! Hooray for digital TV!!!!

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potmetalOct. 6, 08 7:43 PM

I have a nice 32 inch Sony NTSC TV, it has true PIP,two tuners. I also have a VCR that we use for time shifting. We can record channel 9 and watch channel 11 for instance. The PIP is used to keep tract of two shows at once, quite often. With a converter box only ONE channel comes out of the box at a time, the one selected via the converter box remote. That channel is fed to the TV which you place on chan 3 or 4, 3 in our case. So, now the PIP does not work, also since only one channel is available out of the converter box, that precludes recording one and watching another. The bottom line is that this switch over to digital is fine but we're being sold a "bill of goods" with the converters. Also, it's NOT true that the digital will all be on UHF, some will be on VHF so the antenna selection needs to be able to handle BOTH. They aren't telling us that, even in the above article. Trust me - this whole thing is a JOKE for sure. Just the way I see it!

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potmetalOct. 6, 08 7:45 PM

I have a nice 32 inch Sony NTSC TV, it has true PIP,two tuners. I also have a VCR that we use for time shifting. We can record channel 9 and watch channel 11 for instance. The PIP is used to keep tract of two shows at once, quite often. With a converter box only ONE channel comes out of the box at a time, the one selected via the converter box remote. That channel is fed to the TV which you place on chan 3 or 4, 3 in our case. So, now the PIP does not work, also since only one channel is available out of the converter box, that precludes recording one and watching another. The bottom line is that this switch over to digital is fine but we're being sold a "bill of goods" with the converters. Also, it's NOT true that the digital will all be on UHF, some will be on VHF so the antenna selection needs to be able to handle BOTH. They aren't telling us that, even in the above article. Trust me - this whole thing is a JOKE for sure. Just the way I see it!

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kraZmom2Oct. 6, 08 7:45 PM

I ordered right away and recieved my two "cards" to get $40 credit towards the purchase of the converter boxes, however was unable to use them because there were not any available to purchase. The fellow at my local TV store, stated that the government jumped the gun before suppliers could get the boxes manufactured and available to the public to meet the demand in the beginnning. My "cards" now have expired. I suppose I will have to get someone with cable or satillite to apply for two more cards for me.

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vnevaOct. 6, 08 7:48 PM

This is all about the fact that money is to be made from selling the bandwidth. A few consumers will get converters. Many will be stuck with equipment that no longer works well. I know my VCR is old tech, but it does the job. It is going to be a pain the set it up for recording and use it through a converter. A lot of equipment is being made obsolete so the government can sell and corporations can profit from use of bandwidth that is properly within the public demand. This is truly a taking without just compensation.

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lvpops53Oct. 6, 0810:28 PM

Maybe, just maybe, if you can't afford the converter box, then maybe you should be out looking for a job instead of sitting home watching tv. I already know that I'm going to get blasted for my comments. I know that there are people that can't go out to work for whatever reason. These are not the people I'm talking to. I'm talking to those that are just to lazy to get a job.

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rudi86Oct. 6, 0810:37 PM

The digital TV bill was enacted in 1997 and the hard date for digital conversion has been extended several times so I don't understand the confusion unless people have been living in a cave for the last 12 years. I don't have cable or satellite TV and have had a digital TV for over 4 years. I now have 2 digital TVs plus 3 converter boxes for the old TVs and the DVD recorder. Digital is great and everything works just fine. A lot of the UHF TV spectrum was reallocated to public safety and the remainder to advanced wireless services so people can surf the web and watch TV on their 3G and future 4G smart phones once LTE and WiMax get here.

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skee0025Oct. 6, 0811:06 PM

Really, whats your secret? I live less than 10 miles from a transmitting tower and cant watch anything they send out. The Picture freezes or pixalates to the point that it is unwatchable. I have a great new TV, HD antenna and none of it works for S#@X. I would like to be able to watch a little tv , but cant see spending alot of money so the cable and satellite companies can pipe in a boatload of infomerchals.

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