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HD without Digital Converter Box VS. way more channels with Digital Converter Box

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I recently subscribed to basic TV through Comcast. The Cable guy informed me that I must use a "Digital Converter Box".

When using the box, I get a lot of channels, but none in HD.

When plugging the coaxial cable directly into my TV I get a few channels but some are in HD.

What should I do to take advantage of both of these set-ups?

Buy a splitter and a switch for the coaxial, allowing the TV to receive coaxial input from the digital converter box or straight from the wall depending on the setting of the switch?

Since my TV has 4 HDMI inputs, should I just buy a coaxial to HDMI cable? Split the coaxial out of the wall, have one input into my TV, have the other input into my "Digital Converter Box". Then use the coaxial to HDMI cable to input the converter box to an HDMI port on the TV. Then when I'm watching TV and find something that I want to watch in HD and know is available, just switch inputs on my TV using its remote?
post #2 of 9
http://customer.comcast.com/help-and-support/cable-tv/connecting-digital-adapter-to-hdtv
post #3 of 9
If your OK with just the locals in HD(and note they may not be around that much longer) then put a AB switch on the RF input of your TV. Select the converter box and tune your TV to channel 3 to watch the non HD channels and select direct cable to watch the locals in HD. Note you can get a AB switch with a wireless remote so you don't have to get out of your chair, they aren't that expensive.
Of course the best way is to get a real(HD) converter box which would allow you to get many more channels in HD but that will cost you more. A HD converter box will have HDMI or component outputs and in this case you'll probably not use the RF input on your TV.
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Would the below cable do the trick? This way I could use the HDMI input on my TV instead of adding the A/B switch and another remote control.

http://www.amazon.com/Cables-Go-42409-RapidRun-Digital/dp/B001UEKZ00/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1352175555&sr=8-1&keywords=coax+cable+to+hdmi+converter
post #5 of 9
No, that is just an HDMI extender. Read the reviews on the bottom, someone else thought they were getting an HDMI-RF converter also, but they were mistaken.

Years ago when HDTV's started coming out, they used to have 2 RF inputs like on my Mitsubishi 57" DLP from 2006. It is nice to switch inputs from the remote. Unfortuantely they don't make them like that anymore.

If you want more HD channels for free, have you considered getting an OTA antenna? Go to tvfool.com and post your location results (your address will not be displayed) so we can see what reception is like in your area.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks... I'll buy a switch.

Radar-All.png 74k .png file
post #7 of 9
Looks as if you are very close to the towers to the North, but it also looks like there is some kind of terrain or obstacle in the way indicated by 1 Edge reception. You can buy a basic budget antenna like this http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2103077&znt_campaign=Category_CMS&znt_source=CAT&znt_medium=RSCOM&znt_content=CT2032189
Make sure it is facing North, and do a scan for OTA digital channels on your tv. If it works, great, but keep in mind you will probably have to do a re-scan if you switch back to your cable.
post #8 of 9
IMHO... just rent an HD cable box for ~$10 to $12 per month. No extra remotes, no switches, no re-scanning.
Also, contact Comcast and inquire about an HD-DTA. They may be available in your area and probably less for monthly rental.
post #9 of 9
I spoke with several people in various Comcast departments today and only one had even heard of an HD-DTA. The first two were not even aware that the standard DTA box meant a downgrade for image quality over the TV's QAM HD signal.

Upside, I spoke with someone in the Loyalty department, and they said that subscribers of Comcast basic could rent one of the HTC cable boxes for around $3/mo rather then the normal $10/mo. The actual amount depends on your location. The discount was due to there being many fewer channels on basic than if you subscribed to the next tier up.
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