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-   -   Channel Master CM-7000 Digital to Analog Converter (https://www.avsforum.com/forum/186-converter-box-cecb/1004274-channel-master-cm-7000-digital-analog-converter.html)

seatacboy 03-06-2008 06:36 AM

Channel Master is rolling out a Digital to Analog TV converter which apparently is not CECB-certified. The web site indicates that "the CM-7000 Digital to Analog Converter is currently in production and will be available soon at your local electronics retailer."

CM certainly has a reputation for providing top-notch OTA products. However, I am concerned about the box's front branding as "HDTV Compatible" and "HD" (see picture on the information sheet).

Nothing indicates this box provides High Definition 720 or 1080 output. It should correctly bear the SDTV logo, not the HDTV logo with the legalistic phrase "compatible" in small print. I am also a bit disappointed that the product info sheet didn't provide ATSC reception specifications.

Anyone have more knowledge about this product, and why they have labeled this SD-only box as "HDTV" and "HD"?

Whidbey 03-06-2008 07:17 AM

True, they could have chosen better wording for the front of the box, or left it blank. However the average Joe makes no distinction between SDTV and HDTV digital signals. Maybe this is CM target crowd, those who don't know much about HDTV who are also willing to pay a premium for their CECB.

seatacboy 03-06-2008 06:55 PM

I actually was hoping that the CM-7000 - which as of this writing is not CECB certified - would be a "no-compromise" converter box offering the features forbidden by the NTIA - i.e. clear QAM, 720 and 1080 output, et al.

It will be interesting to see if a non-CECB-crippled CM box will be launched, given the lack of current High Definition OTA box choices using sixth-generation chips.

lexus2108 03-06-2008 07:44 PM

There is no smart Antenna on the back as far as I can see. The Maxmedia has the same features plus the Smart antenna. Am I correct? How is this box better?

How much is this box?

Someone posted Maxmedia box $58.99 for 1 and $54.99 for 2

After coupon that is $15 per if you buy 2

Unless this box offers way more. Does it?

seatacboy 03-08-2008 07:17 AM

The CM-7000 offers an S-Video interface but, Strangely for a box coming from Channel Master,no Smart Antenna interface.

At this time, the CM-7000 is not CECB-eligible for purchase with the $40 coupon. Video output format is limited to 480i, therefore the CM website's advertising claim "Get Free HDTV without monthly fees" is inaccurate.

jjeff 03-08-2008 08:39 AM

Yes it's total false advertising to use the HDTV logo. Even the way they say "get free HDTV" You're not getting free HD, you're getting free SD! Booo to CM if this is the case.
Seatacboy-are you sure the box does not output HD? IMO it would make no sense to make a SD non eligible CB at this point. What would be the point? I mean CECB's can have S-out? Very odd box indeed.
Note I would be willing to purchase this box, even if not CE and HD, IF it was great build quality and had the features I wanted, namely a good functioning VCR type program scheduler(not the PCIP type). But I'm not sure this box looks any better than the $39.99 free Echostar TR-40.......I guess time will tell.

seatacboy 03-08-2008 08:49 AM

The specifications on page 2 of the information sheet:
Demodulator input for 1080i, 720p, 480i, and 480.
Video output is 480i ONLY.

480i is Standard Definition DTV only. The CM-7000's claim to "Get Free HDTV Without Monthly Fees" is inaccurate.

What annoys me is that many folks who bought tunerless "HD-Ready" Monitors would really like a state-of-the-art STB which incorporates sixth-generation ATSC decoding for 1080i and 720p as well as 480i output. The new CECBs appear to outperform earlier ATSC tuners in terms of RF sensitivity and overall reception quality, but are "dumbed down" to 480 or 480i output.

Channel Master should offer a best-in-breed STB with genuine HDTV output capability, rather than peddling a non-CECB-eligible SD-only DTV box.

Maybe their real plans are to sell the CM-7000 in Canada, where there is no $40 coupon program being offered. I would be curious about the build quality of this unit.

n4yqt 03-08-2008 08:55 AM

The Channel Master CM-7000 box has a S-Video Output and a Coaxial (RCA) Digital Audio Output, according to their PDF brochure at Channel Master's site.

This box will be perfect for my 1996 Sony KV-32XBR45 and my Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Amplifier!

jjeff 03-08-2008 09:13 AM

Thanks for the link, I didn't catch it before.
This box sure sounds like a CECB, and if it's true that the Coax Digital audio out is not a limitation to be CE, I don't see why it's not CE, maybe there just pending the certification? And I whole heartedly agree with your build quality statement. I can't say I'm really impressed with the CECB's I've seen so far. After all I'd like the box to last longer than the old TV I'm hooking it up to.
Maybe if the box does not get coupon certification they'll make it fully HD, include the Component and HDMI outs and be done with it. Here's hoping anyway.

Whidbey 03-08-2008 10:19 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by seatacboy View Post

The new CECBs appear to outperform earlier ATSC tuners in terms of RF sensitivity and overall reception quality, but are "dumbed down" to 480 or 480i output.

My Insignia (Zenith LG clone) does not outperform my Samsung DTB-H260F in terms of reception quality. Close, but not quite.

kgj67 03-08-2008 11:07 AM

Does anyone know what chipset the Channel Master uses. Would be nice if it was a LG or ATI. Also, is the EPG a full matrix 7-day?

Symbios 03-08-2008 01:23 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjeff View Post

This box sure sounds like a CECB, and if it's true that the Coax Digital audio out is not a limitation to be CE, I don't see why it's not CE, maybe there just pending the certification?

According to solidsignal, "This unit is awaiting certification and will be on the NTIA CECB (coupon eligible converter box) list."

seatacboy 03-08-2008 11:53 PM

Channel Master's unit reportedly has been submitted to NTIA and MIGHT be approved for the NTIA CECB list. The stripped features on this unit should qualify it, but I'm skeptical.

Channel Master's inaccurate "HDTV" and "HD" labeling on the CM-7000 and its information sheet suggests that their U.S. distributor is ignorant/misinformed about Federal Trade Commission regulations regarding consumer product labeling. Channel Master be similarly be ignorant/misinformed about the "letter of the law" requirements to obtain CECB certification from the FCC/NTIA.

DrBri99 03-10-2008 07:29 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whidbey View Post

My Insignia (Zenith LG clone) does not outperform my Samsung DTB-H260F in terms of reception quality. Close, but not quite.

What are your specific observations? some of us in the ATSC converter box comparison thread https://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=980052

...are wondering.

Is the zenith equal or worse with distant stations for you?

seatacboy 03-12-2008 08:06 AM

My local Frys carried several CM-7000 boxes on the shelf as of yesterday. The boxes have no labeling as to $40 coupon eligibility. Price was $79.99.

holl_ands 03-12-2008 01:02 PM

Also $79.99 at www.frys.com & no mention of NTIA, CECB or coupons...

Says it outputs S-Video & composite video.
Only audio output mentioned is "RCA".
Digital Audio (Coax/Optical) is notably absent from feature list...

hilld 03-16-2008 11:19 AM

They are on ad today in the Oregonian at Fry's for $59.99. The ad does not state coupon eligibility.

Quentin2 03-16-2008 11:34 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

...Digital Audio (Coax/Optical) is notably absent from feature list...

Sad, I was afraid of something like this. Doesn't look like DD5.1 will be offered in any CECB even if it's not a disqualifying feature.

Slikkster 03-16-2008 11:38 AM

http://www.pctinternational.com/chan...2A_200801b.pdf

Look at the "flyer". It specifically lists an RCA COAX out. And, while it's not clearly shown, there is a Black RCA connector on the back, below the yellow composite RCA jack.

holl_ands 03-16-2008 12:25 PM

Which is why we're waiting for someone to "bite" and let us know for sure....

I looked at the outside of the box at Frys, but no features list....
And no open boxes. (But that's what gives Frys its special charm....)

Davinleeds 03-16-2008 12:43 PM


DJ99 03-16-2008 06:35 PM

Picked up a CM-7000 at Fry's at the sale price. They took my 40$ coupon without question, though they probably spent 10 minutes figuring out how to enter the coupon into their system. I sure hope it gets NTIA approval :<). Hooked it up to my old JVC crt TV, gets a much better picture in my suburban Chicago location than analog reception. It has a nice program guide (one channel at a time), but you can move between channels to see what's coming up. It has four picture modes: letterbox (good for widescreen), full (4 x 3), zoom 1 (cropped widescreen), and zoom 2 (haven't figured out a really good use for it yet). It uses Pioneer cable box remote codes, so I can turn it on/off and change channels using a universal remote control. It claims to support digital 1-4 closed captioning as well as analog CC-1 and CC-2. Does not appear that's there's any way to upgrade software (no USB or RS-232 port), and the black RCA output jack is labeled "No connection", haven't had a chance to see if there's any kind of output. It has a four hour shutoff, which can be disabled from the setup menu, although it claims that it won't shut off during the "current program". The manual is pretty sparse, appears to be a translation from some other language. The remote has several "unused" keys
(option, page up, page down, and text). On the whole, it seems to work pretty well, especially for the $20 net, but I've noticed a low buzz which is a little annoying. I've hooked it up through a Philips automatic switch, which may be a contributing factor. So far, so good.

Symbios 03-16-2008 07:05 PM

Thanks for the review DJ. Doesn't sound quite as great as I thought it would be. I wonder why they removed so many options last minute? That black RCA jack was supposed to be digital audio out. And what's with all the "unused" buttons on the remote? Did they just take a remote from another model and throw it in?

lexus2108 03-16-2008 07:19 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ99 View Post

Picked up a CM-7000 at Fry's at the sale price. They took my 40$ coupon without question, though they probably spent 10 minutes figuring out how to enter the coupon into their system. I sure hope it gets NTIA approval :<). Hooked it up to my old JVC crt TV, gets a much better picture in my suburban Chicago location than analog reception. It has a nice program guide (one channel at a time), but you can move between channels to see what's coming up. It has four picture modes: letterbox (good for widescreen), full (4 x 3), zoom 1 (cropped widescreen), and zoom 2 (haven't figured out a really good use for it yet). It uses Pioneer cable box remote codes, so I can turn it on/off and change channels using a universal remote control. It claims to support digital 1-4 closed captioning as well as analog CC-1 and CC-2. Does not appear that's there's any way to upgrade software (no USB or RS-232 port), and the black RCA output jack is labeled "No connection", haven't had a chance to see if there's any kind of output. It has a four hour shutoff, which can be disabled from the setup menu, although it claims that it won't shut off during the "current program". The manual is pretty sparse, appears to be a translation from some other language. The remote has several "unused" keys
(option, page up, page down, and text). On the whole, it seems to work pretty well, especially for the $20 net, but I've noticed a low buzz which is a little annoying. I've hooked it up through a Philips automatic switch, which may be a contributing factor. So far, so good.


Questions pls

1) does this box have Analog pass through?

2) Can you turn off tv with the BOX remote? OR you have to use your T remote?

3) Did the low hum go away?

4) can you take pictures on the on-screen display?

thanks

holl_ands 03-16-2008 08:40 PM

5) Can you readily add a station via either directly entering the real RF (not virtual)
channel number....or a rescan without wiping out previous results?

6) Does the Coax Digital Audio output work?

7) How many hours/days of programs displayed in EPG?
Photos of primary EPG screens would be appreciated....

8) Does it have both an Antenna Level and a Signal Quality/Level meter display?

9) Perhaps pop the cover and let us know numbers for the big chips and "tin-can" tuner???
Maybe even some interior macro photography??

DJ99 03-17-2008 07:43 AM

1) does this box have Analog pass through?
No, neither when it's powered on or off. I tried to see if it passes Stereo on the RF output (ch3 or 4), appears that it does NOT.

2) Can you turn off tv with the BOX remote? OR you have to use your T remote? No, the remote only supports the CM-7000

3) Did the low hum go away?
Haven't had a chance to experiment

4) can you take pictures on the on-screen display?

Wilco

DJ99 03-17-2008 07:48 AM

5) Can you readily add a station via either directly entering the real RF (not virtual) channel number....or a rescan without wiping out previous results?
You can rescan to add channels, haven't found a way to direct tune a station.

6) Does the Coax Digital Audio output work?
Haven't tried, but wouldn't that make it coupon ineligible?

7) How many hours/days of programs displayed in EPG?
Photos of primary EPG screens would be appreciated....
Will post a photo when I'm home, but it looks like 24 hours. Curiously I had to set the time (it has autotime function as well as manual) before it would allow me to display the guide.

8) Does it have both an Antenna Level and a Signal Quality/Level meter display? (Signal strength only, will post a picture)

9) Perhaps pop the cover and let us know numbers for the big chips and "tin-can" tuner??? Wilco
Maybe even some interior macro photography??

DJ99 03-17-2008 07:52 AM

10) Does the S-Video Output jack work, too?
Yes, I'm using it.

How does it compare to the composite output?
Maybe a little better on fine details, I haven't tried to do a side by side comparison because this is my oldest TV (10 years) and it only has one video input (S or composite but not both simultaneously). That's why I'm using the Philips switcher.

DJ99 03-17-2008 08:04 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Symbios View Post

Thanks for the review DJ. Doesn't sound quite as great as I thought it would be. I wonder why they removed so many options last minute? That black RCA jack was supposed to be digital audio out. And what's with all the "unused" buttons on the remote? Did they just take a remote from another model and throw it in?

I'm thinking the same thing. If I'd paid retail price, I wouldn't be happy. Except for the S-video output, it doesn't seem very different than the cheaper boxes. I'm guessing that whoever makes the box for them used whatever remote shell they had available and it just had extra buttons.

One button isn't even labeled and it doesn't do anything that I can find. On the whole, this one doesn't seem up to Channel Master's reputation. It shows signs of not being fully baked. The manual is pretty short on detail, just a few pictures and very generalized instructions, almost as if it was written before they had a working model to try out. No specifics on RF output, just shows the switch on the back in a drawing of the box. (No actual picture of the box or any actual screen shots) Given that coupons start expiring before too long (mine expire in May), I can understand why they wanted to get something to market in time to cash in on the coupon program.

Whidbey 03-17-2008 10:10 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ99 View Post

Picked up a CM-7000 at Fry's at the sale price. They took my 40$ coupon without question, though they probably spent 10 minutes figuring out how to enter the coupon into their system. I sure hope it gets NTIA approval :<).

What happens if the box doesn't get approved? Does that mean your coupon card is still good for $40 off another box?
Maybe you should take the card to CC or BB and see if it will still work. In that case the only loser is Fry's for giving you a $40 discount.

leo888 03-17-2008 10:42 AM

Nice review DJ. I am considering picking one of these units at Frys before their weekend special expires. If you get a chance, could you answer some additional questions for me?

1.Looking at the remote on their website, I do not see a dash(-) or period(.) key to enter sub-channels. Can you go directly to say 7-4 with the remote?

2.When you press a channel number on the remote, say channel 7, does it go directly to channel 7-1 or do you have to press channel and sub-channel on the remote?

3.Assuming you previously entered some favorite channels, can you select the favorite channel that follows the currently viewed channel with a single button press or do you have to go into a list of favorite channels to select the favorite you want?

4.If you can navigate through favorite channels, does it navigate in ordinal order (the order in which favorites were entered) or in cardinal order (or ascending channel number sequence)?

5.When you press the Sub-title (CC)key on the remote, does it simply toggle CC on and off or does it go into a menu with all the CC options?

DJ99 03-17-2008 01:18 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by leo888 View Post

Nice review DJ. I am considering picking one of these units at Frys before their weekend special expires. If you get a chance, could you answer some additional questions for me?

1.Looking at the remote on their website, I do not see a dash(-) or period(.) key to enter sub-channels. Can you go directly to say 7-4 with the remote?

There's no way I've found to select the subchannel, but you can select 7.1 by hitting the '7' key and then the unmarked key on the bottom left. If you hit the "FAV" key once, it calls up a list of all channels (and subchannels), which you can scroll through and select.

2.When you press a channel number on the remote, say channel 7, does it go directly to channel 7-1 or do you have to press channel and sub-channel on the remote?

There is no numeric subchannel selection that I've been able to find. (see above)

3.Assuming you previously entered some favorite channels, can you select the favorite channel that follows the currently viewed channel with a single button press or do you have to go into a list of favorite channels to select the favorite you want?

Favorites are selected from the "all channel" list and appear in numeric order

4.If you can navigate through favorite channels, does it navigate in ordinal order (the order in which favorites were entered) or in cardinal order (or ascending channel number sequence)?

Ascending channel number sequence.

5.When you press the Sub-title (CC)key on the remote, does it simply toggle CC on and off or does it go into a menu with all the CC options?

Subtitle scrolls through all CC options one at a time (including off).


By the way, I have to admit I was quite surprised to discover the CM-7000 is made in Bulgaria!

(I really expected China or perhaps Taiwan).



Hope that answers your questions.

DJ99 03-17-2008 01:48 PM

For starters, here's a couple of pix of the CM 7000 menu.
First one is the info screen on channel 2.1
Second one is the software version information
Third one is the channel edit menu. Heart column is (obviously) favorites
The X column is channels deleted from the selection menu (but not memory, since they can be undeleted).

By the way, now that I've added a few channels to favorites, I've discovered that the "FAV" key restores whichever list (all channels or Favorites) that you were looking at last the left/right arrows switch between channel lists.

I'll post one of the channel guide next.
LL
LL
LL

DJ99 03-17-2008 01:58 PM

Here are two pictures of the Program guide:

the first is the current program at the top of the guide,
the second is the bottom of the guide for the current channel.
LL
LL

leo888 03-17-2008 05:28 PM

DJ, thanks for your answers and pictures. Compared to other boxes and HDTV panels with built-in guides, that program guide looks pretty decent. Wish they had made better use of the remote's keypad, hard to believe they left out a dash key.

Rammitinski 03-17-2008 05:35 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by leo888 View Post

Wish they had made better use of the remote's keypad, hard to believe they left out a dash key.

??? Then how in the world are you expected to tune directly to the subchannels?

Shoot - if you can't then I wouldn't even consider the tuner.

DJ99 03-18-2008 12:45 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

??? Then how in the world are you expected to tune directly to the subchannels?

Shoot - if you can't then I wouldn't even consider the tuner.

Actually, I discovered you don't need the dash key. After laying around for a few minutes, I realized the unmarked key on the lower left is actually "enter" (guess that's why it doesn't normally do anything). The reason you don't need the dash key is that you can select channel 05.1 (NBC local/network feed in Chicago) by entering "5" and "enter", "051" and "enter", or even just hitting 5 and waiting for the box to time out and select the channel itself. If you enter numeric keys that can't be translated into a recognized channel, the box eventually just clears the entry. By the way, you can tune 5.2 by entering "5", "enter", and then upchannel which doesn't seem to me to be any more work then entering "05-2". You can (obviously) also select any detected channel from the channel list and select and channels in your favorite channel list. I haven't found any way to determine actual channel assignment from looking at the box. they seem to have gone to some lengths to make that transparent to users.

ramashiva 03-18-2008 12:57 PM

http://biz.yahoo.com/bw/080318/20080318006408.html?.v=1

Quote:


SMITHFIELD, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Channel Master by PCT (www.pctinternational.com/channelmaster), a U.S. manufacturer of consumer off-air reception products, announced today approval by the U.S. Government's National Telecommunications and Infrastructure Administration (NTIA) of its new CM-7000 digital to analog converter box as a coupon eligible converter box.


holl_ands 03-18-2008 04:10 PM

Yup, it's now on NTIA's CECB List:
https://www.ntiadtv.gov/cecb_list.cfm

byu1980 03-18-2008 05:01 PM

The Channel Master CM-7000 appears on the CECB list today. See this link:

ntiadtv.gov/cecb_list.cfm

leo888 03-18-2008 05:37 PM

Tried to buy a CM-7000 today at Fry's in Orange County, CA while the box is on sale using my converter box coupon. After waiting several minutes while the cashier went up to his manager and his manager went to his manager, was told that the coupons are valid only at participating converter program dealers and that Fry's is not part of it.

Needless to say, I passed on this purchase and ended up going to Circuit City and buying a Zenith box hassle-free.

ed_in_tx 03-18-2008 05:55 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ99 View Post

Picked up a CM-7000 at Fry's at the sale price. They took my 40$ coupon without question, though they probably spent 10 minutes figuring out how to enter the coupon into their system.

I tried twice this week to buy a CM-7000 with the $40 coupon at Fry's, and they would not take it. First they said (on Saturday) that the CM-7000 wasn't eligible. But the Zenith they were sold out of was. Then today when I tried again with the newest information about the CM being approved, I was told they aren't set up to take ANY coupons yet! This is the Fry's in Irving TX near Dallas. Somehow this doesn't surprise me.

Also a news release from Channel Master in TWICE magazine says the CM-7000 is now approved for the $40 coupon (as mentioned above).

http://www.twice.com/article/CA6542268.html

Sounds like I am not missing much not getting the CM-7000 from what I read though other than an S-Video connector. Can anyone compare it's reception performance in less than ideal conditions to the Zenith? I did get a Zenith from RadioShack, zero hassle with the $40 coupon card, in and out of the store in 5 minutes.

kgj67 03-19-2008 07:39 AM

Does anyone know what chip-set Channel Master uses? LG, ATI, etc. Also, is the coax digital audio working?

kgj67 03-21-2008 06:34 AM

Bump

cactuspwr 03-21-2008 08:38 AM

what's for me the cm-7000 looks interesting to me is because my Panasonic HDD/DVDR can control a converter box or a Direct-Tv system......

DJ99 03-22-2008 01:34 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by kgj67 View Post

Does anyone know what chip-set Channel Master uses? LG, ATI, etc.

I finally was home long enough to open my CM-7000. Looks like the chipset is from STMicroelectronics. I hesitate to quote numbers because what I think the chips say is not any number I can find on their web site. I want to do a little more research first. The ATSC tuner is from Thompson.

holl_ands 03-22-2008 01:45 PM

Go ahead and let us know all the numbers you see on the big chip(s) and tin-can tuner.
And how many pins do you count on the big chip?
Even better...take some photos....

Symbios 03-22-2008 01:47 PM

What are the first three letters of the FCC ID? We might be able to find a little more info in the FCC's records.

DJ99 03-23-2008 11:53 AM

The largest chip is a STx7707nuc appears to be 26 pins/side.
The 2nd chip is a STv0373 80 pins total
It also has a M29W160ET flash memory chip
The tuner is a Thomson DTT 76850

Sorry, the first batch of pictures didn't turn out.
Will try again.

Avio 03-23-2008 01:53 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ99 View Post

The largest chip is a STx7707nuc appears to be 26 pins/side. ...

I was not sucessful in locating that particular IC on the STMicroelectronics website - http://www.st.com/stonline/

However I located the following that, although more full featured, sounds similar to the solution required for a CECB:

Single-chip, low-cost HD set-top box decoder
Generic Part Number / Orderable Part Number
STm7710 / STM7710ZUC
http://www.st.com/stonline/products/...54/stm7710.htm

PDF Data Brief:
http://www.st.com/stonline/products/...e/bd/12654.pdf

Avio

holl_ands 03-23-2008 03:30 PM

I found fol. hit for STV7707 being used with ST0371 in an ATSC HDTV:
http://translate.google.com/translat...ial%26hs%3DUZD

This company offers several designs, incl using STx7710 or STx7707:
http://www.highgate.tv/HD.htm

PDF's showing STV7710 and STV7707 equivalency found on ST-Japan website:
http://translate.google.com/translat...icial%26sa%3DG
http://www.st-japan.co.jp/stappl/pro..._pamph/p34.pdf
[Too bad G-Translator doesn't work on pdf's....gotta brush up on my Katakana....]

BTW: ST changed their part number system from STi to STV...hence STx usage.

==========================
ST Microelectronics STV7710 is a SoC (System-On-A-Chip) display processor:
http://www.datasheetcatalog.com/data.../STI7710.shtml

STx7707nuc in CM-7777 must be a variation of the STV7710, tailored
(dumbed down) to fulfill the specific CECB requirements.

If you look on pg 8 in above STV7710 Data Brief, you'll see that it is
intended to be used with separate NTSC, QAM and ATSC Decoder chips.
ATSC Decoder is shown as STV0370:
http://www.datasheetcatalog.com/data.../STV0370.shtml
http://www.st.com/stonline/press/new...005/p1568h.htm

STV0373 in CM-7000 is most likely a later version in a smaller package and no doubt
performs much better than the original to meet the CECB A/74 Test Requirements.

DJ99 03-24-2008 08:31 AM

Here's several pictures of the circuit board and chipset inside my CM-7000.
There's also a picture of the Thomson tuner.

Notice the circuit board is from Deltacom Electronics Ltd.
Here's their web site: http://www.dce.bg/
That explains the country of origin, since they're located in Sofia, Bulgaria

BTW, the owners manual implies the box was originally intended to tune cable channels as well as OTA signals, but that must have been deleted to make the box meet the specs for a CECB.
LL
LL
LL

holl_ands 03-24-2008 01:30 PM

And can you verify whether Coax Digital Audio I/F is truly inoperative....or if it really works???

kgj67 03-24-2008 02:31 PM

Well is this unknown chip manufacturer any good? How is the reception, especially with high multipath?

I was ready to buy, but now I am not to sure!!

Avio 03-24-2008 02:49 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by kgj67 View Post

Well is this unknown chip manufacturer any good? ...

Unknown to you and me, until now. ST sounds like they have significant know-how and experience:

Quote:
Originally Posted by STMicroelectronics website View Post


Company Profile

STMicroelectronics is one of the world's largest semiconductor companies with net revenues of US$10.0 billion in 2007.

The Company's sales are well balanced between the semiconductor industry's five major high-growth sectors (percentage of ST's sales in 2007): Communications (37%), Consumer (17%), Computer (16%), Automotive (15%) and Industrial (15%).

According to the latest industry data, ST is the world's fifth largest semiconductor company with market leadership in many fields. For example, ST is the leading producer of application-specific analog chips and power conversion devices. It is also the #1 supplier of semiconductors for the Industrial market and for set-top box applications, and occupies leading positions in fields as varied as discrete devices, camera modules for mobile phones and automotive integrated circuits.

Product Portfolio
ST aims to be the leader in multimedia convergence applications and power solutions, offering one of the world's broadest product portfolios, including application-specific products containing a large proprietary IP content and multi-segment products that range from discrete devices to high-performance microcontrollers, secure smart card chips and MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems) devices.

ST pioneered and continues to refine the use of platform-based design methodologies for complex ICs in demanding applications such as mobile multimedia, set-top boxes and computer peripherals. The balanced portfolio approach allows ST to address the needs of all microelectronics users, from global strategic customers for whom ST is the partner of choice for major System-on-Chip (SoC) projects to local enterprises that need fully-supported general-purpose devices and solutions.

ST has also announced its intention, together with Intel and Francisco Partners, to form a new, independent semiconductor company, Numonyx, which will focus on supplying non-volatile memory solutions for a variety of consumer and industrial devices. ... [MORE]

http://www.st.com/stonline/company/index.htm

Avio

bdfox18doe 03-24-2008 03:11 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

And can you verify whether Coax Digital Audio I/F is truly inoperative....or if it really works???

I may buy one of these just to open it up..maybe something as simple as a
missing J3 or R17...

DJ99 03-25-2008 10:23 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by n4yqt View Post

DJ99 - Can you tell if the RCA jack labeled 'Not used' is connected to anything internally?

Sorry, I did try to see if there was a jumper missing , but I sure couldn't see anything without removing the circuit board (trying to protect my warranty since these are relatively new designs). It wasn't like there was anything obvious looking at the circuit board, I couldn't even see traces going toward the jack either, believe me I tried. I suspect it isn't truly active, since they did receive certification and digital audio is considered a no-no

See response here: http://www.ntia.doc.gov/dtvcoupon/manufacturerFAQ.html

holl_ands 03-25-2008 01:56 PM

Maybe someone else has a Surround Receiver with Digital Audio Coax input who can try it???

dingo99 03-25-2008 03:54 PM

I don't think it'll be that easy... If you look carefully at the photo, there does appear to be a trace possibly going to the jack, but coming from an area with several missing components (see attached). A closeup photo of that area might help confirm.
LL

rrrrrroger 03-27-2008 05:44 AM

Okay... the most important thing to me:

- How sensitive is the tuner? Does it get more or fewer stations than the Zenith box?

kgj67 03-27-2008 06:54 AM

dingo99, you mentioned not voiding the warranty. What is the warranty?

dingo99 03-27-2008 08:30 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by kgj67 View Post

dingo99, you mentioned not voiding the warranty. What is the warranty?

Actually it was DJ99 that bought the box, not me. I missed out on the $60 pricing at Fry's, so I was just studying the photos. Good question, though - maybe DJ99 can fill us in?

Also, another question for DJ99: You mentioned the Fry's in Illinois accepted the coupon. When you check your coupon status at https://www.dtv2009.gov/CheckStatus.aspx does it indicate that your coupon has been redeemed?

av_geek_97 03-27-2008 11:12 AM

Sorry guys, don't waste your time with further research on the digital audio output...I called CM's tech support and spoke to a very friendly and informative guy who apologized and told me that they were forced to remove this feature so that it could be coupon eligible. He said that he himself wanted to use it at his house, but couldn't due to this fact. I then asked him if he was really covering for the company and perhaps it was really hooked up and he sincerely told me that he wished that was the case but is not.

kgj67 03-27-2008 12:05 PM

So, did the CM support guy say how we could hook-it back up?

av_geek_97 03-27-2008 01:45 PM

As far as how to hook it back up, he did not give any information. He claimed that to his knowledge the module had been removed. I was really hoping that it would be hooked up, very disappointed.

I recently purchased the RS Digital Stream, WM Magnavox, BB Insignia, and the Zenith DTT900 for comparison. If you are willing to live without S-Video and Dig. Audio output, the Digital Stream reigns supreme. Seems to have a very nice, sensitive tuner, quick channel changing, excellent channel-at-a-time program guide (up to approx. 8 hours in advance with scrollable program descriptions), great remote control with fast acting volume control (way faster than the Zenith), nice menu graphics, and an overall case size that is only about half the size of the competition.

Of the four I have tested, the Magnavox is the worst, hands down.

DJ99 03-27-2008 03:05 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by dingo99 View Post

Actually it was DJ99 that bought the box, not me. I missed out on the $60 pricing at Fry's, so I was just studying the photos. Good question, though - maybe DJ99 can fill us in?
Also, another question for DJ99: You mentioned the Fry's in Illinois accepted the coupon. When you check your coupon status at https://www.dtv2009.gov/CheckStatus.aspx does it indicate that your coupon has been redeemed?

Actually, I just made an assumption that it came with some kind of warranty. Checking the manual seems to make no mention of how long it it. I will e-mail their support to see what they have to say.

After doing a status, it does NOT seem to have been redeemed so far.
I have my box, I'm not real worried about when (or if) Fry's ever redeems it.


Arnold R 03-27-2008 06:03 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by av_geek_97 View Post

As far as how to hook it back up, he did not give any information. He claimed that to his knowledge the module had been removed. I was really hoping that it would be hooked up, very disappointed.

I recently purchased the RS Digital Stream, WM Magnavox, BB Insignia, and the Zenith DTT900 for comparison. If you are willing to live without S-Video and Dig. Audio output, the Digital Stream reigns supreme. Seems to have a very nice, sensitive tuner, quick channel changing, excellent channel-at-a-time program guide (up to approx. 8 hours in advance with scrollable program descriptions), great remote control with fast acting volume control (way faster than the Zenith), nice menu graphics, and an overall case size that is only about half the size of the competition.

Of the four I have tested, the Magnavox is the worst, hands down.

Someone earlier reported that the Digital Stream was cutting off the bottom 10 lines of the video compared to the Zenith. Can you confirm or refute this on your units?

Thanks

av_geek_97 03-27-2008 06:31 PM

I cannot confirm that other person's comment concerning the bottom 10 lines of video being cut off from the Digital Stream with certainty, but I was also only testing the composite video output on each unit. I never even hooked up the RF output because I knew for sure I would not be using it regardless of which unit I ended up with. My TV is a 27" Sony Wega and I do not recall missing any lines at the bottom of the screen while testing any of the units.

Hopefully this helps...

Arnold R 03-27-2008 06:44 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by av_geek_97 View Post

I cannot confirm that other person's comment concerning the bottom 10 lines of video being cut off from the Digital Stream with certainty, but I was also only testing the composite video output on each unit. I never even hooked up the RF output because I knew for sure I would not be using it regardless of which unit I ended up with. My TV is a 27" Sony Wega and I do not recall missing any lines at the bottom of the screen while testing any of the units.

Hopefully this helps...

Thanks,
Arnold

holl_ands 03-27-2008 07:58 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by av_geek_97 View Post

Sorry guys, don't waste your time with further research on the digital audio output...I called CM's tech support and spoke to a very friendly and informative guy who apologized and told me that they were forced to remove this feature so that it could be coupon eligible. He said that he himself wanted to use it at his house, but couldn't due to this fact. I then asked him if he was really covering for the company and perhaps it was really hooked up and he sincerely told me that he wished that was the case but is not.

As Ronald Reagan once paraphrased:
"doveryai, no proveryai":
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trust,_but_Verify

Wouldn't be the first time a company had to make superficial PAPER changes
to keep the feds happy....when reality was somewhat different....

av_geek_97 03-28-2008 05:02 AM

Yes, holl_ands, I hope you are correct about it being "paper" changes. (Ron) the guy I talked to on the phone sounded as if he knew exactly what I was getting at when asking him about the dig. audio output being "hooked up" but "not" hooked up, but he still seemed certain it was not going to work. If someone does get it figured out, though, please let us all know because I would buy this unit it if it did.

Whodart 03-28-2008 05:52 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by av_geek_97 View Post

As far as how to hook it back up, he did not give any information. He claimed that to his knowledge the module had been removed. I was really hoping that it would be hooked up, very disappointed.

I recently purchased the RS Digital Stream, WM Magnavox, BB Insignia, and the Zenith DTT900 for comparison. If you are willing to live without S-Video and Dig. Audio output, the Digital Stream reigns supreme. Seems to have a very nice, sensitive tuner, quick channel changing, excellent channel-at-a-time program guide (up to approx. 8 hours in advance with scrollable program descriptions), great remote control with fast acting volume control (way faster than the Zenith), nice menu graphics, and an overall case size that is only about half the size of the competition.

Of the four I have tested, the Magnavox is the worst, hands down.

Hi Geek.

Which Digital Stream did you test? DSP7700T, DSP7500T or the DTX9900.
Like the rest of us, am trying to figure out which boxes will be the best bet
for what I want. I won't even get my coupons until end of May.. Thanks

Dave E
NLRock AR

DJ99 03-28-2008 07:47 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ99 View Post

Actually, I just made an assumption that it came with some kind of warranty. Checking the manual seems to make no mention of how long it it. I will e-mail their support to see what they have to say.

Received a polite e-mail from C/M customer support indicating the warranty is 90 days, parts & labor. Will be on my own before analog x-missions are even gone.

av_geek_97 03-28-2008 11:06 AM

Hello Whodart...

I apologize for not specifiying in my earlier post. I was testing the Digital Stream DTX-9900. Really a very nice unit all around. (This model is the only Digital Stream available in my area).

drlava 03-28-2008 01:28 PM

It looks like the digital audio output could be re-enabled by adding a few transistor buffers, and some resistors and capacitors. Some time, SMT work, and a scope is all one needs it appears
I like non-features like this!

Unfortunately from the sound of it, it won't ouput anamorphic widescreen, so it's off the list.

dmulvany 03-28-2008 01:41 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ99 View Post

Received a polite e-mail from C/M customer support indicating the warranty is 90 days, parts & labor. Will be on my own before analog x-missions are even gone.

That may be the same warranty that most of the CECBs will have. Some of us can buy the CECB with a credit card that doubles the warranty, though.

dingo99 03-28-2008 02:01 PM

Fry's has the CM-7000 on sale again, so I went and picked one up. See attached for a closeup view of the digital output circuit.

Missing are 4 resistors, 3 capacitors, and 2 transistors. Using a DMM, I measured +1.65V @ RA7, +5V @ RD60, and +5V @ CD28/QD9. Any theories what the missing component values should be?

@drlava, actually it does support anamorphic widescreen. Simply hit the "Wide" button on the remote to select the "Full" picture setting.
LL

dmulvany 03-28-2008 02:02 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ99 View Post

5.When you press the Sub-title (CC)key on the remote, does it simply toggle CC on and off or does it go into a menu with all the CC options?

Subtitle scrolls through all CC options one at a time (including off).

Due to the way that digital closed captions are inserted by CECBs into the picture, it's been thought that digital closed captions will look a lot sharper and cleaner using S-video than composite. (Using RF or composite, there can be a fuzzy appearance for thin caption fonts.)

Could you check whether the S-video makes a significant difference in the appearance of the digital closed captions, and take photos?

So far, you're the only person I know with a CECB that has S-video who can check this out. (I set up a thread on evaluating CECBs for users of captioning elsewhere on this form, and it would be really nice to know whether S-video will make a difference.)

We don't have any Fry's Electronics stores out east or near me, otherwise I'd pick up a Channel Master CECB myself.

drlava 03-28-2008 02:32 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by dingo99 View Post

Fry's has the CM-7000 on sale again, so I went and picked one up. See attached for a closeup view of the digital output circuit.

Missing are 4 resistors, 3 capacitors, and 2 transistors. Using a DMM, I measured +1.65V @ RA7, +5V @ RD60, and +5V @ CD28/QD9. Any theories what the missing component values should be?

@drlava, actually it does support anamorphic widescreen. Simply hit the "Wide" button on the remote to select the "Full" picture setting.

Excellent info!
Here's a quick visual analysis:

The 1.65V is the rms voltage of the 3.3V biphase manchester encoded data coming from the chip. This goes to the amp/buffer PNP transistor QD10 whose emitter (and base of QD9) is biased by RD60. QD9 may be a NPN transistor with a buffer cap on its collector (CD28). Its output goes to impedance matching/filter network RD61, 62, and CD29, and is finally AC coupled to the coax output through CD30.
RA7 may be necessary for signal integrity to cut down on ringing, or provide additional pull up or pull down current.

With one of these in hand, I could probably have a working solution in an hour or less.

Avio 03-28-2008 03:09 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by drlava View Post

Excellent info!
Here's a quick visual analysis:

The 1.65V is the rms voltage of the 3.3V biphase manchester encoded data coming from the chip. This goes to the amp/buffer PNP transistor QD10 whose emitter (and base of QD9) is biased by RD60. QD9 may be a NPN transistor with a buffer cap on its collector (CD28). Its output goes to impedance matching/filter network RD61, 62, and CD29, and is finally AC coupled to the coax output through CD30.
RA7 may be necessary for signal integrity to cut down on ringing, or provide additional pull up or pull down current.

With one of these in hand, I could probably have a working solution in an hour or less.

What about firmware. Do you think simply replacing the missing hardware components will make the digital audio output work? Or, do you think the firmware would have to enable, or toggle on, the digital audio?

... just a thought. Avio

drlava 03-28-2008 03:16 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Avio View Post

What about firmware. Do you think simply replacing the missing hardware components will make the digital audio output work? Or, do you think the firmware would have to enable, or toggle on, the digital audio?

... just a thought. Avio

A scope would tell for sure, but his 1.65V reading sounds promising that there is already a signal there.

nybbler 03-29-2008 04:46 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by dingo99 View Post

I don't think it'll be that easy... If you look carefully at the photo, there does appear to be a trace possibly going to the jack, but coming from an area with several missing components (see attached).

Actually, that's a good sign. On a typical PC motherboard using similar chips, the S/PDIF signal comes out at TTL levels from the sound chip. It then goes through a resistor divider network (with some caps for noise suppression) to bring it down to S/PDIF levels. If all they did is not populate the resistor divider section, adding one in should be easy. A firmware change would be harder to deal with.

onslowtn 03-30-2008 05:14 PM

Rather than obsessing over digital audio, lets get back to the real question of which has better reception sensitivity, the CM 7000 or DTT900.

rrrrrroger 03-31-2008 08:11 AM

Okay... the most important thing to me:

- How sensitive is the CM-7000 tuner? Does it get more or fewer stations than the Zenith box?

cawgijoe 03-31-2008 12:58 PM

I have my coupons and need two boxes. I'm focused on either the Zenith box or the Channel Master.....I like the fact the Channel Master has s-video.

Where is the best place to purchase the CM-7000?

av_geek_97 03-31-2008 01:48 PM

I agree with onslowtn... it seems that unless you have as much free time as a teenager the digital audio out on the CM-7000 is a lost cause. The true issue is reception sensitivity and overall satisfaction with the user interface. If you are REALLY REALLY after higher end outputs just cut your losses and buy the Tivax STB-T1 (even though it's not coupon-eligible). Take a look here... http://www.amazon.com/Tivax-ATSC-Dig.../dp/B000OD2H7C

holl_ands 03-31-2008 02:07 PM

Tivax website also sells ($90) STB-T1 (aka LX-1000??) HD-STB:
http://www.tivax.com/converter.htm

The inexpensive Coby DTV-140 HD-STB always seems to be Out-Of-Stock.

RJTech RJ-1000ATSC (480i low-rez) SD-STB supports ATSC, QAM and
Coax Digital Audio.

None of these qualify for the CECB Coupon program....

========================================
CM-7000 is sold at Fry's stores, www.frys.com and www.solidsignal.com
Solid Signal is an NTIA participating retailer who should take coupons.

bdfox18doe 03-31-2008 02:15 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post

RJTech RJ-1000ATSC (480i low-rez) SD-STB supports ATSC, QAM and Coax Digital Audio

Are you sure of that model? .. No QAM, and No digital output on the RJTech I have. Newegg no longer has them.

seatacboy 03-31-2008 04:34 PM

Quote:


The true issue is reception sensitivity and overall satisfaction with the user interface

Correct. Again, Channel Master's claim "Get Free HDTV" reproduced on the CM-7000's retail packaging and advertising is incorrect - the CM-7000 provides standard definition DTV only, not high definition.

ez2 03-31-2008 06:20 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by cawgijoe View Post

I have my coupons and need two boxes. I'm focused on either the Zenith box or the Channel Master.....I like the fact the Channel Master has s-video.

Where is the best place to purchase the CM-7000?

Also here: www .freedtvshop. com (without spaces)

Currently on back-order with a ETA of 04/04/08.

nybbler 03-31-2008 06:50 PM

How do you enter the coupon number at SolidSignal?

For digital audio the resistors are RD61 360 ohm (in-line resistor), RD62 91 ohm (resistor to ground). The in-line cap should be 150nF, I think that's CD29 but it's hard to tell without actually having the board. The other cap (CD30) looks like it goes from output to ground and so should be small, < 1nF; it could probably be left out entirely. The two transistors probably aren't all that critical, provided they can run at 6Mhz and the polarity is right. I don't know about RD60 (depends on the transistor selected), RA7, or CD28. That's enough impersonating an EE from this software guy for today :-). Caveat Lector (which means I will not take responsibility if you break anything).

And rrrrrrroger, I have no idea of the sensitivity of this box compared to the Zenith. The Zenith doesn't have s-video so it's out of contention for one of my TVs; I have that input and dang it, I want to use it.

holl_ands 03-31-2008 08:53 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by bdfox18doe View Post

Are you sure of that model? ..
No QAM, and No digital output on the RJTech I have.
Newegg no longer has them.

There were two different RJTech boxes on www.newegg.com
(Not easy to find: "deactivated item", see below.)

RJ900ATSC is low-rez SD-STB people have used with a Smart Antenna.
They found out the QAM and Coax Digital Audio claims were incorrect.
[So it might even be CECB Coupon Eligibile.....if RjTech bothers to submit it???]
[Or maybe it's using older Zoran chips (see below) and couldn't meet CECB specs]:
http://www.newegg.com/product/produc...AFC-C8Junction
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...0108_436053-20
http://www.dtskaraoke.com/rj900atsc.html
http://www.google.com/products?q=rj900ATSC

RJ1000ATSC is a similar low-rez SD-STB (using older Zoran chips),
advertised to support QAM, S-Video, Coax (SPDIF) Digital Audio
and RGB Component Video I/F....but NO Smart Antenna I/F.
[And maybe it has Analog NTSC.....or NOT???]:
http://www.newegg.com/product/produc...AFC-C8Junction
http://blujay.com/item/RJ-1000ATSC-T...090700-1637890
http://www.yesbuy.net/rj-tech-dvd-dv...j1000atsc.html

Given what has transpired, buyer beware....

And for a few more bucks, you can buy a hi-rez HD-STB....

cawgijoe 04-01-2008 06:17 AM

[/quote]And rrrrrrroger, I have no idea of the sensitivity of this box compared to the Zenith. The Zenith doesn't have s-video so it's out of contention for one of my TVs; I have that input and dang it, I want to use it.[/quote]

+1......for the extra money I'd rather get the ability and capability of having s-video.....I know at least one of the TV's I will be hooking up has s-video...not sure on the second....but for $20 more ($10 each) compared to the Zenith.....it's probably worth it to me.

av_geek_97 04-01-2008 06:43 AM

Having tried, head-to-head, the Zenith DTT-900 verses the Digital Stream DTX-9900 I found that there is no difference in the quality or sensivity of the tuners in each. Both displayed excellent video and audio output and high speed channel changing. The user interfaces are nice on each, but in my opinion the Digital Stream is more feature rich (mainly the EPG which goes out many hours in advance compared to the Zenith which only goes out one program in advance) and the remote control had a better and more durable design.

It just baffles me that the Zenith is getting so much praise when it really doesn't have anything over the Digital Stream (just as an example).

rrrrrroger 04-01-2008 08:07 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by av_geek_97 View Post

It just baffles me that the Zenith is getting so much praise when it really doesn't have anything over the Digital Stream (just as an example).

Well..... one reason is because the Zenith was first to market, and therefore got lots of early positives.

Second reason: It's a VERY serious flaw that the Digital Stream can not manually add channels. My initial Zenith autoscan only recovered 4 stations, but with the manual tuner and tweaking of the antenna, I was able to add several more. ----- Therefore I would not recommend the DS to a customer, unless it was shown to get 1-2 extra stations than the other boxes.

Back to CM-7000:

So if I'm understanding, this is a very sensitive receiver?
I live in a poor market with many weak signals and need the best possible box.

Replay3030Owner 04-01-2008 11:47 AM

Third reason: The Digital Stream chops scan lines off the top and more off the bottom of the picture before resizing it.

I'd rather deal with sound issues and not having a richer EPG than for my tuner cropping off and stretching the image incorrectly.

dmulvany 04-01-2008 02:59 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Replay3030Owner View Post

Third reason: The Digital Stream chops scan lines off the top and more off the bottom of the picture before resizing it.

I'd rather deal with sound issues and not having a richer EPG than for my tuner cropping off and stretching the image incorrectly.

FYI, there's a separate thread about that DigitalStream CECB, and there's a posting there that says the cropping is noted only on some channels:

https://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...4#post13517314

I'd agree I'd rather not have any cropping at all, though!

Dana

av_geek_97 04-01-2008 07:13 PM

First, as I have mentioned multiple times (whether you are concerned or not) I have compared these units on the same evening using the exact same TV, antenna and cables and was NOT able to see any difference concerning missing or "cropped" scan lines on the DS. I'm not sure how many of the rest of you can say you've done that, but it's one thing to read what other people have read about what other people have read about certain models and actually testing them for yourself with your own two eyes and ears. (BTW, the aspect ratio is only distorted in the "14:9" video mode, which you never HAVE to use.)

Second, does it really matter if a certain unit came out before a different unit with respect to which one is better (or better rated anyway)? If anything the latter unit stands a better chance of having overcome the faults/shortcomings of the first-to-be-released unit.

Third, you CAN manually enter channels into the Digital Stream DTX-9900.

Fourth, all that these boxes are doing is lengthing the useful life of analog TVs and analog VCRs/DVD-Rs, etc. If reducing the number of "cropped scan lines" is so important then perhaps buying a true HDTV would be a more appropriate course of action.

rrrrrroger 04-02-2008 09:14 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by av_geek_97 View Post

Second, does it really matter if a certain unit came out before a different unit with respect to which one is better (or better rated anyway)?

Strawman argument!. I never said that. Here is what I said (read carefully): "Well..... one reason is because the Zenith was first to market, and therefore got lots of early positives."

It got lots of early praise.
That does not mean it's a better box.
It only means it got lots of early + recommendations.
Quote:


Third, you CAN manually enter channels into the Digital Stream DTX-9900.

Well then it might be worth trying out.

In your testing, how many channels does the DTX-9900 get versus the Zenith box?
Quote:


If reducing the number of "cropped scan lines" is so important then perhaps buying a true HDTV would be a more appropriate course of action.

Yes, I thought about that, but I don't know what kind of tuner is inside the DTV. It could be a piece of junk that gets half as many channels as my Zenith unit.

cawgijoe 04-02-2008 09:41 AM

Solidsignal just received a shipment of CM-7000s and they have raised the price to $79.99 per box.....reason being, demand.

I just ordered two this morning and mandaged to get the $68.99 price right before they raised it.


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