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RCA DTA800 Digital to Analog TV Converter Box - Page 6

post #151 of 405
Problem is that no matter what, if it's lost audio before my PVR uses the box to record something unattended, I get a useless recording.

I can't believe this crap passes the governments' testing let alone the companies own testing?

3 instances in 2 days of ownership
post #152 of 405
replay3030,

what model box do you have -A or -B ?

Also what kind of antenna indoor, attic, or outdoor? I have not had this happen on mine yet.
post #153 of 405
I have the B box. I have a simple bowtie antenna up against the wall of my house that faces the towers 35 miles away.

I have the exact same set up in my bedroom with a 42" Panasonic plasma. The Panasonic gets 95 to 100% signal strength on 4 of my 5 frequencies, and 80% on the other. The RCA CECB in the other room now gets 35% on the weakest, 55% or so on the strongest.

Therefore moving in the room can reflect signals and cause the RCA to breakup, and we're in a flightpath 2 blocks from here so when a plane goes over, the RCA will flake out with a long pause and a message about no signal sometimes), while the Panasonic will at most freeze for a portion of a second, then continue.

Yes, I realize it's not the same physical antenna but it is the identical type of antenna and position WRT to the same wall and tower direction, but the signal strength difference between the tuner on the Panasonic and the RCA is very significant, but at least the Panasonic doesn't ever decide to just not continue with audio when it picks up the signal again.

Soon I plan on moving the antenna into the attic/getting a better one to feed to everything, but wanted to do the initial testing this way.

I guess I should use my other coupon for the Zenith/Insignia since it only has a bad audio sound sometimes, but has a much better tuner sensitivity from what I read and won't just stop broadcasting audio.

To repro it on yours, I bet if you play with blocking the antenna causing the video to freeze you could get it to occur.
post #154 of 405
Are your digitals transmitting on uhf or vhf or both? I know you mentioned their remapped virtual locations but what freq ch are they sent on?
Is the audio loss happening only on vhf or both?
Do you notice the drop occurs after you turn on / off a light switch, cieling fan, or air condition/heat? Can doing any of these recreate the audio loss?
post #155 of 405
I got my RCA box yesterday and hooked it up without much difficulty. But I can't seem to get my dvd recorder to scan in the new channels. That means I can only record the channel I'm watching to my dvd recorder. I can't record one channel while watching a different channel.

Also, I can't program the timer recorder to record different channels at different times without manually switching the channels. That defeats the purpose of a timer recorder since I use that when I'm out for a long time. Does anyone have suggestions on what to do?
post #156 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by xantier View Post

Does anyone have suggestions on what to do?

What model of DVD recorder do you have? If it's an older model or a newer LG with an IR blaster, it may contain a code that will allow the blaster to change the channels on the box (I believe the RCA tuner can be controlled by an RCA satellite tuner code).
post #157 of 405
All of my digitals are on UHF .. Channel 19 through 44 range.

I have only pinpointed it to happening on two of the 5 so far, and when I was just walking around on the rear side of the antenna causing signal bounce back to it.

I will try to do a more detailed reproducable test. Though IIRC, 2 others have posted in this or another thread (the ATSC comparison one?) that they had audio drops requiring reboot on this box as well, so I doubt it's just 1 bad box.
post #158 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by Replay3030Owner View Post

I have the B box. I have a simple bowtie antenna up against the wall of my house that faces the towers 35 miles away.

I have the exact same set up in my bedroom with a 42" Panasonic plasma. The Panasonic gets 95 to 100% signal strength on 4 of my 5 frequencies, and 80% on the other. The RCA CECB in the other room now gets 35% on the weakest, 55% or so on the strongest.

Therefore moving in the room can reflect signals and cause the RCA to breakup, and we're in a flightpath 2 blocks from here so when a plane goes over, the RCA will flake out with a long pause and a message about no signal sometimes), while the Panasonic will at most freeze for a portion of a second, then continue.

Yes, I realize it's not the same physical antenna but it is the identical type of antenna and position WRT to the same wall and tower direction, but the signal strength difference between the tuner on the Panasonic and the RCA is very significant, but at least the Panasonic doesn't ever decide to just not continue with audio when it picks up the signal again.

Soon I plan on moving the antenna into the attic/getting a better one to feed to everything, but wanted to do the initial testing this way.

I guess I should use my other coupon for the Zenith/Insignia since it only has a bad audio sound sometimes, but has a much better tuner sensitivity from what I read and won't just stop broadcasting audio.

To repro it on yours, I bet if you play with blocking the antenna causing the video to freeze you could get it to occur.

Have you had a chance to connect your DTA800B to your Panasonic plasma, and make a comparison between the RCA box and your Panasonic's integrated ATSC tuner using the same exact antenna? It would indeed be very interesting to know if the RCA box had lower RF sensitivity than your Panasonic TV's own ATSC tuner......during my brief use of the RCA, signal sensitivity in my "reception hole" condo was better than expected. The Zenith has been slightly more sensitive than the RCA but not an enormous difference - but my two Zenith CECBs have never developed audio freeze-ups as happened two dozen times during a week of using the RCA.
post #159 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by xantier View Post

I got my RCA box yesterday and hooked it up without much difficulty. But I can't seem to get my dvd recorder to scan in the new channels. That means I can only record the channel I'm watching to my dvd recorder. I can't record one channel while watching a different channel.

If neither your TV nor your recorder has a digital tuner, and you want to record one digital channel while watching another one, then you need to use two converter boxes. Each converter box can tune only one channel at a time.

If you get a second converter box, you probably ought to get a different brand, so you can control each box with its own remote, without conflicts.
post #160 of 405
Available here online for $7.99 after coupon & S&H: http://dtv.bsat.net/pc-18-2-rca-dta8...ertor-box.aspx (not sure which extension model).
post #161 of 405
It's an Insignia about a year plus old.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

What model of DVD recorder do you have? If it's an older model or a newer LG with an IR blaster, it may contain a code that will allow the blaster to change the channels on the box (I believe the RCA tuner can be controlled by an RCA satellite tuner code).
post #162 of 405
Interesting solution. I will have to look into it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jtbell View Post

If neither your TV nor your recorder has a digital tuner, and you want to record one digital channel while watching another one, then you need to use two converter boxes. Each converter box can tune only one channel at a time.

If you get a second converter box, you probably ought to get a different brand, so you can control each box with its own remote, without conflicts.
post #163 of 405
Ok, so I've had the RCA converter for a few days. I've been losing signal on a few (same) channels daily and yesterday when it was windy, the signal on other channels were quite bad. I suppose it's just a matter of a bad antenna? I have the rabbbit ears kind. Any suggestions on preventing that from happening? What's a good indoor antenna to go with the RCA converter?
Thanks!
post #164 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by zhenerale View Post

Available here online for $7.99 after coupon & S&H: http://dtv.bsat.net/pc-18-2-rca-dta8...ertor-box.aspx (not sure which extension model).

It's $7.99 before shipping, shipping adds another ~$8 onto it = $16 total.

You can get these at any wal-mart for $13 including tax after applying the coupon.
post #165 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by Replay3030Owner View Post

It's $7.99 before shipping, shipping adds another ~$8 onto it = $16 total.

You can get these at any wal-mart for $13 including tax after applying the coupon.

Yes it is cheaper not having to pay S&H (which may vary depending on distance to seller), but not all Walmarts have the RCA unit or for $3, not to have to travel out to Walmart (gas $) if it is far away.
post #166 of 405
Although I've read a lot of AVS DTV posts about OTA antennas, signal strength and poor splitter electronics, I haven't been able to find a post about terminating an unused RF output on the box. (I'm using an RCA DTA800B.) If this converter box were an analog monitor with passthrough, I would see immediately that the picture was better with a terminator.

Does this apply to digital TV signals, or to "poor" passthrough electronics? Unfortunately, the RCA DTA800B on-screen signal strength meter may not help me evaluate this, because my interest is in the signal sent to my flatscreen TV! Thanks in advance.
post #167 of 405
I just fired up my box last night.

Judging the book by it's cover:
So-so. I have a Toshiba TV, 13", built in VCR in my bedroom. Out of the box I finally found the right remote code (there are about a dozen for Toshibas). Now I can use the input button to find the setup screen. Scan for channels, find 23 usable. I use this RCA "snail" antenna (bunny ears) right on top of the TV and the signal strength is around 45-50% most of the time. I am getting some break-up but usually not enough to bother me as the set will be used for news and an occasional sports update. I don't care for the remote, not that it's confusing, just seems kinda lame. The menus are ok for navigation but it would be kind of nice if you could see the picture behind it. When it comes in the picture is as good as watching a DVD on that tv. But it is only 13". To quote Yoda "size matters not".

All in all for about $12.00 I'm not going to complain. And I suspect the antenna may not be working right. Some time I might try a new one.
post #168 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by tvtommy View Post

I just fired up my box last night.

I use this RCA "snail" antenna (bunny ears) right on top of the TV and the signal strength is around 45-50% most of the time. I am getting some break-up but usually not enough to bother me as the set will be used for news and an occasional sports update.

I recommend that you experiment moving your rabbit ears around a bit. Take the antenna off the TV and see if there's a spot within its cable range that gives a consistently higher signal strength.

I've been surprised by how small changes in location and orientation of an indoor antenna can make big differences in signal strength. It sounds as if you are already close to "good enough". A little turning, sliding, or tilting may push you into the no problems range.

Also, when fully extended, the rabbit ears (VHF dipole) on your antenna are at
the best length for lower VHF use. If your digital stations are all on UHF, or UHF plus upper VHF, try telescoping them back in somewhat and see if the signal strength gets better or not.

For strictly UHF, it might work better with them collapsed in most of the way.
But test it out for yourself and see what really works best in your setup.
post #169 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by tvtommy View Post

All in all for about $12.00 I'm not going to complain. .

Why not? Everyone else seems to! YIC
post #170 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by CasualOTAer View Post

If your digital stations are all on UHF, or UHF plus upper VHF, try telescoping them back in somewhat and see if the signal strength gets better or not.

For strictly UHF, it might work better with them collapsed in most of the way.
But test it out for yourself and see what really works best in your setup.

For both UHF and VHF using the rabbit ears at the right distance for the VHF and a bow tie for UHF through a UHF/VHF combiner is better. The bow tie gives better performance and is easier to position.

For only UHF like you said the rabbit ears have to be collapsed. Though a bow tie works better and the rabbit ears make a good mast for it, lots of freedom of movement for aiming.
post #171 of 405
Actually I spent about 20 minutes fiddling around with placement/adjustments. I guess "good enough" is quite right, I will at some time go get another antenna. I'm not going to go through the pain of crawling up in my attic and stringing a wire etc. etc. I'm in a surburban Minneapolis area so it shouldn't be out of the question to get good reception with an indoor antenna. Any recommendations? Is a powered one really that much better?
post #172 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by tvtommy View Post

I have a Toshiba TV, 13", built in VCR in my bedroom. Out of the box I finally found the right remote code (there are about a dozen for Toshibas).

TVTommy, I have a similar Toshiba 13" TV/VCR combo (model MV13J3), but have been unable to find a remote code that will work for it (I tried every Toshiba code listed in the docs, plus others I found online). Which code are you using?
post #173 of 405
I appreciate any help you can give to me with this problem. I am new to this forum.

The DTA800B goes to sleep, turns from green to yellow. When I turn the TV on and then push the box button on the remote - the yellow light goes out and no light appears. The TV will not work without the green light showing the box is turned on.

Prior to this problem I had a beautiful picture on my Toshiba TV and excellent sound. This box is less than a week old.

All I can find in the manual is to unplug from socket to reset the box. I have done this 100 times and left it unplugged for 24 hours but still the same problem. Also the manual said to check the Power SAVER that is set to go to sleep after 4 hours. I cannot get back into the menu on this TV to change the setting so it will never go to sleep and stay green all the time. But, I suggest if I had done this in the beginning I would perhaps not have this problem now.

I have another DTA800B connected on another TV and have not had this problem. But, I did go into the menu and click to keep the power from sleeping. I am afraid this box will do the same as the one I have the problem with. I do not understand why the manual does not address more troubleshooting and the website listed in the manual has given no response to my email.

Has anyone else had this problem and solved it? Thanks in advance!
post #174 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeneie View Post

All I can find in the manual is to unplug from socket to reset the box. I have done this 100 times and left it unplugged for 24 hours but still the same problem. Also the manual said to check the Power SAVER that is set to go to sleep after 4 hours. I cannot get back into the menu on this TV to change the setting so it will never go to sleep and stay green all the time. But, I suggest if I had done this in the beginning I would perhaps not have this problem now.

Has anyone else solved it?

To turn off power saver, try this with the remote, press the following sequence: Menu 5 3 4 (then use, menu menu, to back out)

To do a factorty restore, it is Menu 5 5 (pin = 0000 or 3308)
post #175 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by satpro View Post

To turn off power saver, try this with the remote, press the following sequence: Menu 5 3 4 (then use, menu menu, to back out)

To do a factorty restore, it is Menu 5 5 (pin = 0000 or 3308)

Thanks, I tried both of your suggestions and could still not get the light on the box to turn from yellow to green. Still, when I push the remote box button to turn it on the box goes completely blank - no yellow or green light. I disconnect the power cord and plug back in and get the yellow light but same problem.

How can I get the green light to turn on? Thanks.
post #176 of 405
The box is dead. Return it to where you got it and get a replacement.
post #177 of 405
Just so you guys know, The Zenith DTT901 will have analog pass through.

Matt
post #178 of 405
Quote:
Originally Posted by osofast35801 View Post

Just so you guys know, The Zenith DTT901 will have analog pass through.

Matt

I did not think I would need analog pass through, but in my antenna experiments, I can get a strong dx ch15 that has a very weak digital signal. I would like to watch some Cards & later, Rams games on that channel.
I might try the Zenith, although I really like my RCA. zip 61231
post #179 of 405
HDTVexpert has a new review May 9, 2008
RCA DTA800 and Channel Master CM7000 Digital TV Converters
post #180 of 405
According to this review, "the DTA800 would be distributed west of the Mississippi, while the troublesome Magnavox TB100MW9 would be stocked in the eastern USA."

hdtvexpert . com / pages_c / 2TV_Converters . html
(sorry, can't post URLs yet)

To everyone who has this box: Is the above statement true?

I can't find it at any of the Walmarts in Milwaukee, yet my buddy was easily able to find it in St. Louis. Is there anywhere else that I can buy the RCA?
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