ATSC Converter Box comparisons - Page 53 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1561 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 07:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dattier View Post

or consumers who realized that they didn't need CECBs.

I wonder how many people who are exclusively cable or sat. (and intend to stay that way) ordered vouchers knowing they had no use for them, but did so anyway either on speculation or simply because they could. I'm afraid when the music stops, those least able to afford the cost of the DTV switchover will be the ones left standing.

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post #1562 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 08:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DigaDo View Post

I ordered my coupons mid-morning on 1/1/08. These coupons had an expiration date of 5/23/08. (These coupons were used to purchase Zeniths.) A relative ordered coupons in the afternoon on 1/1/08. These coupons had an expiration date of 5/27/08. (These coupons were used to purchase Zeniths.)

The statistics posted 5/21/08 showed 269 expired coupons. These expired coupons must be among the very first ordered on 1/1/08 by "early birds." Perhaps they didn't find any "worms" to their liking.

The statistics posted 5/28/08 show 183,583 expired coupons. That's a lot of "worms" that got away.

Yep - 2 of those were mine. When something worth buying with a coupon comes along I'll just reapply with another address.
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post #1563 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 08:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

I wonder how many people who are exclusively cable or sat. (and intend to stay that way) ordered vouchers knowing they had no use for them, but did so anyway either on speculation or simply because they could. I'm afraid when the music stops, those least able to afford the cost of the DTV switchover will be the ones left standing.


I think that is the case for many. Although the coupon amount is both stated in dollars and number of coupons (maybe just a conversion). If the coupons expire the money will go back into the program to be used by another coupon holder, does that mean that the number of coupons would increase and the dollars (which is what matters) stay fixed?

I also think many ordered them by mistake not realizing they didn't need them. As I recall in the early outreach there were statements that "tv was going digital and that you needed them", in more recent months with a greater outreach it is being more clearly said " if you have cable or satellite or recently purchased a tv with a digital tuner then you are all set and don't need anything, if you use an antenna then you need to do something".
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post #1564 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 08:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

I'm afraid when the music stops, those least able to afford the cost of the DTV switchover will be the ones left standing.

The value of unused coupons goes back into the pool, so it can be reissued. That's why they expire.

57 channels and nothing on
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post #1565 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 09:25 AM
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Based on anecdotal evidence from discussions with friends who are "watching over" elderly relatives using OTA TV, I think many may have ordered coupons then decided that they were ready for a new TV anyway. So, instead of spending the $20 plus sales tax on $60, they decided to just spend $600 and get a new 32" HDTV (equivalent replacement for the 27" 4 X 3 TVs most have been using for years). Also, some who haven't yet applied for coupons never will because of the same reasoning. When it comes to the point of "now I have to do something, maybe I just should get a new TV", many won't go the converter box route if they can at all afford it. Plus, I think that a bunch of those Rebate checks might go to buying some family's first HDTV.
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post #1566 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 10:18 AM
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I see some buying a new HDTV if they do have the money and it has the sensitivity to work in their area because they have more features and enhanced resolution

Others in more of a fringe area may be more reluctant to buy a new HDTV or SDTV and figure that a cheap converter box is better than nothing and will hold off getting a new HDTV or SDTV until the sensitivity in the HDTV or SDTV is better then the converter box.

The last batch of people will hold off on buying a new HDTV or SDTV until the prices come down far enough or there Analog TV dies on them.
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post #1567 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malouff View Post

The last batch of people will hold off on buying a new HDTV or SDTV until the prices come down far enough or there Analog TV dies on them.

I'm one of those. But mainly because the set is a 5 year old Sony XBR 40" CRT HD set weighing 304lbs that takes two gorillas and a boy to move.

Bob

The views expressed here are my own and do not necessarily represent those of ABC, CBS, CW, FOX, MeTv, or AntennaTv; my employer; or its parent company.
Nor my wife for that matter!
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post #1568 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 11:28 AM
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I have a question. Do you know if any of these CECB's let you preset the aspect ratio for an individual channel? It is annoying to change them on a channel-by-channel basis on my 4X3 tv with an ATSC tuner. If the feature is available, is there some sort of listing where I this information?

Thanks.
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post #1569 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WackyPacks View Post

I have a question. Do you know if any of these CECB's let you preset the aspect ratio for an individual channel? Thanks.

The Zenith / Insignia will; IIRC.

Bob

The views expressed here are my own and do not necessarily represent those of ABC, CBS, CW, FOX, MeTv, or AntennaTv; my employer; or its parent company.
Nor my wife for that matter!
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post #1570 of 1867 Old 05-29-2008, 12:28 PM
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Thanks.
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post #1571 of 1867 Old 05-30-2008, 07:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdfox18doe View Post

The Zenith / Insignia will; IIRC.

Does anyone know if the Echostar has this option?
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post #1572 of 1867 Old 05-30-2008, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdfox18doe View Post

I'm one of those. But mainly because the set is a 5 year old Sony XBR 40" CRT HD set weighing 304lbs that takes two gorillas and a boy to move.

Be fair; you already have one of the largest 16:9 pictures available in an HD CRT. What could you upgrade to?
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post #1573 of 1867 Old 05-30-2008, 05:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

I wonder how many people who are exclusively cable or sat. (and intend to stay that way) ordered vouchers knowing they had no use for them, but did so anyway either on speculation or simply because they could. I'm afraid when the music stops, those least able to afford the cost of the DTV switchover will be the ones left standing.

And I wonder how many of THOSE are thinking they are likely to be laid off
and will NEED converter boxes when they're forced to drop cable/sat.....

===================================
Nonetheless, keep in mind expiring coupons are for EARLY ADOPTERS who are
much more informed than Joe Sixpack and are likely to wait for the "right" box.
They aren't worried about getting more coupons....e.g. relative/friend/neighbor....
And should be aware NTIA/FCC/Congress are (STILL!!!!) considering whether to
"reissue" expired coupons:
http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/CA6563883.html
http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/CA6559158.html

The CBA continues to cloud the waters with this half-baked suggestion:
http://www.broadcastingcable.com/art...A6565503.html?
Do they really think BB/CC/RS/KM/WM will do an exchange after 30-days are up????

This off-the-wall suggestion....and the pressure to buy SOMETHING, ANYTHING
with expiring coupons makes it even more unlikely NTIA will approve any renewals.
[....& Meredith continues to fiddle while Coupons burn....]

============================================
The big crunch is going to come next year when the procrastinators finally,
reluctantly, figure they ought to do "something" about their stranded TV...
and/or 2nd/3rd TV/VCRs....something the next Congress can worry about....

=====================================
Although NTIA lists total # of converters and the # with analog pass thru (85/18),
the only important statistics are number of converters actually available (25-29)
and those with analog pass thru (2...and 2 more taking preorders).
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post #1574 of 1867 Old 05-31-2008, 03:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

...
=====================================
Although NTIA lists total # of converters and the # with analog pass thru (85/18),
the only important statistics are number of converters actually available (25-29)
and those with analog pass thru (2...and 2 more taking preorders).

The only CECB I have tried with PassThru is the Magnavox TB100MG9. Assuming no 'Operator Error', The CECB must remain 'powered up' and while you can hold the 'Setup' button down to revert back to DTV, it seems one must use the menu process to switch to Analog 'PassThru'. This is not workable for TiVo driven IR blaster recordings. I do not know if I will be able to return it to Sears and go buy an RCA DTA800B1 if they ever show up at Walmart.

I am hoping I can trade my Zenith DTT900 in for a Zenith DTT901 at CC, soon.

Good luck to us all!
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post #1575 of 1867 Old 05-31-2008, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cia_viewer View Post

I am hoping I can trade my Zenith DTT900 in for a Zenith DTT901 at CC, soon.

Do we know yet how the DTT901 will implement pass-through?
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post #1576 of 1867 Old 05-31-2008, 11:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cia_viewer View Post

I do not know if I will be able to......go buy an RCA DTA800B1 if they ever show up at Walmart.

If you live east of the Mississippi they never will.
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post #1577 of 1867 Old 06-01-2008, 06:24 PM
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Has anyone rated the various boxes?
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post #1578 of 1867 Old 06-02-2008, 05:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdfox18doe View Post

The Zenith / Insignia will; IIRC.

I have found this forum to be very helpful, so thought I would add a note or two. My apologies if I am not posting exactly right.

Based largely on recommendations in this forum, a few weeks ago I purchased a Zenith DTT900 at a CC in western 'burbs of Chicago. I rooted through the stack of boxes, and got one with a March 2008 manufacture date. It works great -- no evidence of the audio problem that has been reported. I did note that there were two different serial number sequences in the stack -- perhaps that partially explains the mixed observations reported in this forum regarding audio problems on March units.

More recently, I purchased two DTT900's (for my parents) at the same store -- this time, with April 2008 dates. I have tested each briefly, and both seem to work fine.

I can confirm that the Zenith unit allows one to "lock" the aspect ratio for a given channel. There are actually a couple of options, including the fixed aspect ratio, as well as one that allows "set by program."

A prior post reported that the Zenith would not "receive" programs broadcast in HD. I don't think that this is correct -- several of the stations in Chicago are broadcasting in HD, and those come in just fine (several of the stations are broadcasting HD on subchannel 001 and SD on 002).

I am running the unit with a roof-top antenna, and can pick up all the main Chicago stations (we're about 25 miles from the Loop). The Zenith does lock in channels very quickly -- in fact, it seems to be faster than a TV I have with a built-in digital tuner. Overall, I think it's a very nice unit. As has been pretty well covered in this forum, audio output is a bit weak -- people who enjoy big sound may need a preamp.

DJ
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post #1579 of 1867 Old 06-02-2008, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbjanes View Post

A prior post reported that the Zenith would not "receive" programs broadcast in HD. I don't think that this is correct -- several of the stations in Chicago are broadcasting in HD, and those come in just fine (several of the stations are broadcasting HD on subchannel 001 and SD on 002).


DJ

No, it isn't correct. All of the CECBs will receive HD signals, and downconvert them to SD.
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post #1580 of 1867 Old 06-02-2008, 06:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbjanes View Post

I have found this forum to be very helpful, so thought I would add a note or two. My apologies if I am not posting exactly right.

Based largely on recommendations in this forum, a few weeks ago I purchased a Zenith DTT900 at a CC in western 'burbs of Chicago. I rooted through the stack of boxes, and got one with a March 2008 manufacture date. It works great -- no evidence of the audio problem that has been reported. I did note that there were two different serial number sequences in the stack -- perhaps that partially explains the mixed observations reported in this forum regarding audio problems on March units.

More recently, I purchased two DTT900's (for my parents) at the same store -- this time, with April 2008 dates. I have tested each briefly, and both seem to work fine.

I can confirm that the Zenith unit allows one to "lock" the aspect ratio for a given channel. There are actually a couple of options, including the fixed aspect ratio, as well as one that allows "set by program."

A prior post reported that the Zenith would not "receive" programs broadcast in HD. I don't think that this is correct -- several of the stations in Chicago are broadcasting in HD, and those come in just fine (several of the stations are broadcasting HD on subchannel 001 and SD on 002).

I am running the unit with a roof-top antenna, and can pick up all the main Chicago stations (we're about 25 miles from the Loop). The Zenith does lock in channels very quickly -- in fact, it seems to be faster than a TV I have with a built-in digital tuner. Overall, I think it's a very nice unit. As has been pretty well covered in this forum, audio output is a bit weak -- people who enjoy big sound may need a preamp.

DJ

It is not that the DTV converter can't receive a HD program, it's that your TV can't display the HD program in HD. You will see a very good quality signal, but to your eye it is not HD. You need a HDTV TV to display the full quality HD that presents.
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post #1581 of 1867 Old 06-02-2008, 10:23 PM
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Originally Posted by pestocat View Post

It is not that the DTV converter can't receive a HD program, it's that your TV can't display the HD program in HD. You will see a very good quality signal, but to your eye it is not HD. You need a HDTV TV to display the full quality HD that presents.

you also need, of course, a digital TUNER that presents HD to the HDTV, which a cecb can't, although most NEWER HDTVs include such a tuner...

OTA only. For signal strength at your location: FCC DTV reception map
TVGOS data: Sony 250 from 5.1?, LG3410a from my DTVPal setup here, not any more.

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post #1582 of 1867 Old 06-03-2008, 09:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wh5916 View Post

No, it isn't correct. All of the CECBs will receive HD signals, and downconvert them to SD.

Agreed. I was simply commenting on a prior post on this forum, which had stated that the box would not "receive" signals broadcast in HD (as I recall, that poster had referred to a conversation with a technical person at the company).
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post #1583 of 1867 Old 06-05-2008, 08:37 AM
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I see that the NTIA has added the Zenith DTT-901 to the approval list.

You have to look closely, because the Zenith DTT-900 and Zentech models are out of order. They also do not have the DTT-901 marked as analog pass-through.

I don't see the equivalent Insignia box on the list either.
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post #1584 of 1867 Old 06-05-2008, 11:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vthokie820 View Post

It could be a bad box. I'd take it back for an exchange and see if you have the same problem with a different Insignia box.

I purchase 6 Insignia boxes and they all experienced the problem on blue lines with crytic text. I returned all of them and bought Digital Stream from RS which so far have not had this problem. I advised Best Buy they need to look into this problem.
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post #1585 of 1867 Old 06-05-2008, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmulvany View Post

The Insignia CECB has frozen twice (within the first week of use) with a lot of text across the screen saying things such as "Undefined Instruction:1]....Unknown Fault Status, etc. The buttons on the remote control don't respond to anything. Anyone know what this phenomenon is called, and what causes it? (My HDTV freezes up now and then but never produces all this text.)

Here's a picture:



Other problems I've noticed is that the audio and video went out of sync and the captions became delayed the longer the box was on.

I do not know what it is called..but it happened on 6 different Insignia boxes I tried. I returned all for a refund. Has anyone seen this on the Zenith Box...since it seems to be the same as the Insignia and made by LG.
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post #1586 of 1867 Old 06-05-2008, 12:56 PM
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I've got 3 Zenith boxes, and yea, one of them has done that once....so far. Unplugged it to reset and it was OK.

Chris C
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post #1587 of 1867 Old 06-05-2008, 10:03 PM
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I've seen that once on my Zenith box after having it on continuously for a couple of weeks. A power cycle got everything back to normal. My box is a February build.
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post #1588 of 1867 Old 06-06-2008, 12:24 AM
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Holl_ands comparison sheet is very useful. I've also looked at the chart on wiki.

I'm wondering if anyone has done something similar for the functions available on the remotes, and some of the other features that have been implemented differently? This so one doesn't have to search through multiple threads to compare things like

One button aspect control or multiple
One button pass-through or multiple
TV power on or not
TV volume or not
TV mute or not
Channel add/delete by sub-channel, or main channel only
Aspect set for each channel, or all
etc.

When trying to pick a box for an elderly relative ease of use of the remote is very important. Physical size of the remote and button size is also important, but somewhat subjective.
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post #1589 of 1867 Old 06-06-2008, 07:42 AM
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viewer29, I'd highly recommend a learning remote control. You choose the look and feel of the remote, and button logic is whatever makes sense. Best feature: the mute button is in the same location for everything. Or, wait six months, and you should be able to find a universal remote with codes for tv, VCR, and CECB.

The Zenith has most things conveniently located on a button, and now that I have it on my learning remote, it's the perfect size.
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post #1590 of 1867 Old 06-06-2008, 10:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by viewer29 View Post

Holl_ands comparison sheet is very useful. I've also looked at the chart on wiki.

I'm wondering if anyone has done something similar for the functions available on the remotes, and some of the other features that have been implemented differently? This so one doesn't have to search through multiple threads to compare things like

One button aspect control or multiple
One button pass-through or multiple
TV power on or not
TV volume or not
TV mute or not
Channel add/delete by sub-channel, or main channel only
Aspect set for each channel, or all
etc.

When trying to pick a box for an elderly relative ease of use of the remote is very important. Physical size of the remote and button size is also important, but somewhat subjective.

The Access HD digital converter boxes has a dedicated or for $10 more a universal remote that has all of these features:

Controls all Access HD digital converter boxes plus a TV and one AUX device.
World's largest IR code database supporting 500 brands and over 1000 codes.
Compatible with more than 93% of all IR remote controlled products sold in North America.
Most comprehensive device compatibility available in the marketplace.
Compatible with the latest plasma and LCD televisions as well as leading satellite and cable systems.
Advanced code search feature.
Uses XMP-1 IR protocol to communicate with Access HD digital converter boxes.
User programmable macros.
AV select feature gives direct access to discrete TV inputs.
LEDs for mode indication under a translucent keypad.
Volume punch through allows access to TV and AUX volume control without changing modes.
64k flash micro-controller.
Low battery voltage indicator light.
Includes 2 AA batteries.
Free website support.
Call center support.
2 year limited warranty.

http://www.accesshd.tv/products.html
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