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Why do I need a Cable Box if my TV has HD tuner inside????--->

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Ok, My Tv has all the HD tuners in it (astc,qam,etc), in fact it cost more because it does have those tuners. I can't get any HD content without using a comcast cable box. What is the purpose of having a TV with built in HD tuner if you stll need a cable card or cable box???

I basically just hook up the coax cable and get no additional channels than the basic no HD ones. To get the HD ones I have to use the cable box....so what the heck do these built in HD tuners do for you????? Am I hooking this up right?
post #2 of 16
When I first got my standard cable (no box) my TV picked up a few of the HD channels. But, the picture was a little strange. i think you have to have the box because they like to make money.
post #3 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill97Z View Post

Ok, My Tv has all the HD tuners in it (astc,qam,etc), in fact it cost more because it does have those tuners. I can't get any HD content without using a comcast cable box. What is the purpose of having a TV with built in HD tuner if you stll need a cable card or cable box???

I basically just hook up the coax cable and get no additional channels than the basic no HD ones. To get the HD ones I have to use the cable box....so what the heck do these built in HD tuners do for you????? Am I hooking this up right?


Have you auto-programmed or auto-scanned for the digital channels?

Usually, one can get at least a few HD channels without a STB but one of the functions of a STB is to decode encrypted channels. So, if all the HD channels on your system are encrypted you won't get them without cable card or STB.

I'd be tempted to double-check you have properly searched for digital channels before proclaiming that you get none. I have Charter and get three or four with no STB and 10 with STB (not counting HBO, Cinemax, and Showtime - don't subscribe to them).
post #4 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill97Z View Post

Ok, My Tv has all the HD tuners in it (astc,qam,etc), in fact it cost more because it does have those tuners. I can't get any HD content without using a comcast cable box. What is the purpose of having a TV with built in HD tuner if you stll need a cable card or cable box???

I basically just hook up the coax cable and get no additional channels than the basic no HD ones. To get the HD ones I have to use the cable box....so what the heck do these built in HD tuners do for you????? Am I hooking this up right?

You should get your locals in HD and maybe Discovery HD or A&E HD or TNT HD, but besides that you have to pay for the good channels. Your cable provider encrypts those channels so people cannot steal them, thus the need for a CableCard (which works with your QAM tuner) or a STB.
post #5 of 16
Being that your on a Comcast system you should be able to get the local HD channels without a box.

Most TVs with a digital cable tuner also have CableCard, does yours? If so you could get a cable card instead of a STB to receive HD channels.
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Yeah I have a cable card in my dlp tv, but always wondered why I needed it. I don't get any digital or HD channels without the card.....really strange. This got me thinking about this topic.....

Then my friend just picked up a Sharp LCD with built in tuners (no cablecard slot) that I just set up for him and I can't get anything either without the box. I will try again since some of you are getting Hd content from comcast.
post #7 of 16
The built in tuners are for accessing channels via the Antenna Input. You can hook up an indoor or outdoor antenna, or your cable, directly to that input, and then run the channel installation process. With an antenna you should receive all the local HD channels, depending on how far away you live from the transmitters. With cable, you should receive all the standard cable-ready-TV channels and all the local HD channels, but you won't receive any higher-tier scrambled digital cable channels. To get those channels unscrambled, without a cable box, you need a cable card (that is if your TV has a cable card port and your cable company offers a cable card). Rental of the cable card is usually about one-third the cost of a cable box. You'd still need to pay for higher-tier digital channel packages and premium channels if you want them unscrambled.
post #8 of 16
Here's an analogy that might help: Think back to the old days before HD... your TV had an analog tuner in it right? You could just plug the coax cable into the back of the set and get the local stuff and some basic. But to get the good stuff you needed a box. Similar situation here. Your HD box is not just a tuner it is also a converter. Hope that helps.
post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by iykht View Post

Here's an analogy that might help: Think back to the old days before HD... your TV had an analog tuner in it right? You could just plug the coax cable into the back of the set and get the local stuff and some basic. But to get the good stuff you needed a box. Similar situation here. Your HD box is not just a tuner it is also a converter. Hope that helps.


A better description would be "descrambler".
post #10 of 16
Funny I see this thing. When I first got a hdtv I scanned and couldn't find anything...so I just use the box with the hdmi cable....

For the heck of it I hooked up a small antenna...it can get most locals...I think the only extra things are some of the i stations, nbc's weather plus and The Tube.

So I hooked it up to the cable directly...scanned as tv antenna....about a dozen analog channels came in (locals and community) OK

Then I scanned it as cable...

317 digital channels found and 75 analog!!!

All the analog were found except the movie ones...for the digital it's extreamly weird...I didn't finish totally mapping everything but the music choice were all lumped together, some local hd's were there, some other channels but since there's no guide I couldn't exactly tell. The vast majority were just empty black screens. Some channels seemed to be around a second time too.

I will say it is a bit interesting because sometimes they might have something hidden.
post #11 of 16
I did the same thing. Almost all of the music channels are like 94-4 thru 94-46 on my tv with no hdbox. I noticed they change channels around sometimes too. like sometimes channel 4 is 4-1 but sometimes they move it to 29-1. Also randomly thru the day I can scroll thru all the hundreds of digital channels that are just black screens and pay per view shows pop up sometimes. Up intill last month I also got INHD 1 and INHD 2, discovery HD, espnHD, tntHD also but they have vanished
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by selkec View Post

I did the same thing. Almost all of the music channels are like 94-4 thru 94-46 on my tv with no hdbox. I noticed they change channels around sometimes too. like sometimes channel 4 is 4-1 but sometimes they move it to 29-1. Also randomly thru the day I can scroll thru all the hundreds of digital channels that are just black screens and pay per view shows pop up sometimes. Up intill last month I also got INHD 1 and INHD 2, discovery HD, espnHD, tntHD also but they have vanished

Channel 4-1 and 29-1 may actually be the same. Local stations broadcast HD over the air on unused UHF stations and then HD tuners sometimes have the ability to convert the HD UHF channel to the number that equates to the regular channel. For example, our ABC affiliate here in Boston is channel 5. However, their HD channel is UHF channel 20...but when I used an OTA HD tuner in the past, it converted 20-1 to equate to 5-1 as it's easier for us viewers to remember the actual local station number than some obscure UHF number.
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeinma View Post

Channel 4-1 and 29-1 may actually be the same. Local stations broadcast HD over the air on unused UHF stations and then HD tuners sometimes have the ability to convert the HD UHF channel to the number that equates to the regular channel. For example, our ABC affiliate here in Boston is channel 5. However, their HD channel is UHF channel 20...but when I used an OTA HD tuner in the past, it converted 20-1 to equate to 5-1 as it's easier for us viewers to remember the actual local station number than some obscure UHF number.

he was talking about cable not OTA broadcasting which is what are talking about. Its not just UHF channels that are used for digital OTA television, some markets have digital VHF stations as well.
post #14 of 16
Interestingly, Cox here passes the PSIP info for one of the locals, so it maps to the same channel as it does OTA. Also, one digital channel (a weather subchannel) and the local PBS' HD feed map to the same channel numbers as on the cable box. All the others are on pretty much random channels.

I hardly need the box for anything other than premiums, but a few of the regular channels are also encrypted. It's strange.
post #15 of 16
73 amc
79.1 nwcn
79.3 komo
79.4 king
79.5 kong
79,6 cbut
79.7 kcts
79.8 kmyq
79.9 kstw
80.5 disney
80.9 arts
91.1 espn2
91.2 speed
91.3 vshd
91.5 history
91.6 abc family
91.7 nick
91.8 hallmark
91.9 toon p
92.1 msnbc
92.2 fox
92.3 trutv
92.4 lifetime
92.5 a&e
92.6 food
92.7 tnt
92.8 tbs
92.9 usa
92.10 vh1
99 cbc
102.2 e!
102.3 bravo
102.5 fsn
102.6 espn
102.7 hg tv
102.9 uwtv
102.10 uw2tv
102.40 mtv2
103.1 bet
103.2 fx

103.3 oxygen
103.4 discovery
103.5 tlc
103.6 spike
103.7 sci-fi
103.8 amc
103.9 comedy
103.10 mtvhd
107.2 bio hd
107.3 historyhd
108.4 cspan
108.4 cspan3
108.5 bloomburg
108.5 bloomburg
112.4 g4
114.12 lmn hd
114.5 pbshd
116.7 cnnhd
116.8 golf
116.82 tlchd
116.83 travel
post #16 of 16
Huh???
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