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I've no insight into who's likely to win this one, but...


I have to agree with the TV people like foxeng on this one. Why should broadcasters be required to build transmitters, but not require that the consumer electronics contain receivers to decode the signals?


"The market will drive it" is a bogus argument when the change is being mandated by the government in the first place. If you really believe that line of reasoning, then broadcasters shouldn't be required to do digital transmissions, since the market for them is clearly not there yet.


UHF didn't take off until the tuner mandate, I don't see why digital would be any different.
 

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Quote:
UHF didn't take off until the tuner mandate, I don't see why digital would be any different.
The reason the UHF mandate made sense was because back then you HAD to have an antenna. There was no cable or satellite.


Today, the overwhelming percentage of users are receiving TV via cable, followed by satellite. Only geeks like us are willing to deal with rabbit ears and outdoor antennas for TV reception.


I personally resent having to pay for the existing NTSC tuner in any TV I want to buy. I have not used the internal tuner for perhaps 10 years.


With the mandate, many users will be forced to pay for a feature that very few people will use.


Having said all that, if it moves the transition along, then I guess its a price we will all have to bear. I personally think the key to all this is the cable companies. DTV over cable is whats going to make or break the DTV transition.


BGL
 

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The FCC has screwed this up a bit. The problem being in the expense of the ATSC tuners which are still likely to add $100-$150 to the price of a TV in the forseeable future. While that may be acceptable on a $2000 TV, It aint gonna go over real well when it doubles the cost of a 19" TV.

More than anything this could be the biggest stumbling block to completeing the digital transistion (shutting off analog).


It is quite a quandry isn't it?

Broadcaster must shut off his analog by1/1/07 but only if >= 85% of customers can recieve digital. But replacement TV's that recieve digital are prohibitively expensive to the masses.


Also, now that the cable tuner standard has been agreed upon, how many TV's will be sold with both a cable tuner and a OTA tuner. As a consumer, I want to be able to have my choice but I don't want to pay for both.


I hate to say this but maybe the pro-COFDM nut was right.


P.S. More TV's rely on the OTA signal then you'd expect, i.e. main TV on cable but garage, workshop, etc. using an antena.
 

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The point is that not including a tuner precludes one from receiving OTA transmissions, and makes the broadcaster's efforts on their end worthless. I agree many people probably won't switch to OTA from cable, but not putting the tuners in TV makes this a foregone conclusion. Why mandate the transmission end, and not the receiving end? Both are required for this transition to take place.


I doubt integrated tuners will add much to the cost of TVs by 2006, or whenever they're required in smaller TVs. The cost of silicon-based technologies is always dropping, and the benefits of increased production alone would greatly drive down per-unit costs. The manufacture's are suing because they don't see a way to profit off this mandate, I believe.


COFDM wouldn't solve the cost issue, as HDTV tuners in Australia cost about what they do here. The cost between 8VSB and COFDM hardware I believe is much less than the difference between SD and HD MPEG2 decoding hardware. For the same reasons, the added cost of an OTA tuner on top of a cable tuner isn't that great. Likewise, this year's QAM + 8VSB tuners (like the new one from LG) don't cost more than last year's 8VSB-only tuners.


You resent having to pay for an NTSC tuner? How much can that possibly cost?
 

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I sincerely doubt that prices will remain that high for very long. The transition itself is government mandated so why is it a surprise that reception as well as transmission should be required?
 

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You resent having to pay for an NTSC tuner? How much can that possibly cost?
Good question.


I do not know, but if its more than .01, then I resent having to pay for something I don't want or need. Its principle more than degree. And its not just a tuner, its two tuners, and picture in picture crap that again is useless to me.


I hate paying for speakers and an amp in the TV as well, since they are useless to me as well.


But like I said, while I disagree with the mandate, if it moves things along, then I will do my part. I don't disagree that in some cases, there will be benefits, but I still think cable carriage and cable ready TV's is the big kahuna in terms of the transition.


For me, I will be staying with satellite and an outboard OTA tuner for the foreseeable future. And when HD Tivos hit the streets, I will have a nice neat one box solution.


BGL
 

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Originally posted by BGLeduc
Good question.


I do not know, but if its more than .01, then I resent having to pay for something I don't want or need. Its principle more than degree. And its not just a tuner, its two tuners, and picture in picture crap that again is useless to me.
Fair enough. There are definitely display solutions that include neither of these. (Plasmas, projectors, computer and presentation monitors come to mind).

Quote:


But like I said, while I disagree with the mandate, if it moves things along, then I will do my part. I don't disagree that in some cases, there will be benefits, but I still think cable carriage and cable ready TV's is the big kahuna in terms of the transition.
Agree that cable-ready is probably more important the broadcast-ready for the 60-something percent of households receiving cable. However, HDTV is all about freeing up broadcast spectrum for non TV uses, so including OTA tuners somehow seems reasonable.
 

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Expensive tuners? As the production goes up, the price goes down. With in a few years, the cost will be the same as it is to include NTSC tuners which is very little. Another frivolous lawsuit. I sure with they would change the law so if you sue and you loose, you have to pay the legal expenses of who you sued. Sure would change things.
 

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I read a study from Europe last week. It said DTV STBs (for their COFDM, SDTV system) were currently available for around $80 (USD) and they were predicted to be less than $60 (USD) next year.
 

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I've argued the laws of Moore and volume pushing prices down too but think about it a little more.

If you can even buy one how much does an new ATSC STB cost today? $200 - $300. I can't find one to buy so I don't know for sure but that seems to be the last price I heard. How much can you reasonably expect that cost to come down in only 3 years? 50% is optimistic. That is still alot of cost to add to the price of a $300 29" TV. It could be a bigger issue than we expect.

Can anybody verify the price of a new ATSC only tuner? I couldn't find one.
 

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Agree completely with jckessler's and kipp's previous posts in this thread.


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Originally posted by Cruzer
I've argued the laws of Moore and volume pushing prices down too but think about it a little more.

If you can even buy one how much does an new ATSC STB cost today? $200 - $300. I can't find one to buy so I don't know for sure but that seems to be the last price I heard. How much can you reasonably expect that cost to come down in only 3 years? 50% is optimistic. That is still alot of cost to add to the price of a $300 29" TV. It could be a bigger issue than we expect.

Can anybody verify the price of a new ATSC only tuner? I couldn't find one.
Understand what you're saying. The only real "gotcha" i can think of is, I really don't know enough about the costs involved in "making", or mass producing a "DTV chip" as opposed to any other I/C. It's hard for me to imagine that it's all that much different from any other VLSI I/C which can be mass produced at low cost.


Anyhow, Circut City I believe advertised the Samsung TIR-151 OTA DTV tuner for $299 in last week's sunday ad insert. That is certianly a rare add, though. New OTA only DTV receivers are generally running $300-400 presently. The last one I bought, last December(Zenith HDV420) was $399. When I look inside of this receiver, it looks like a few $ in parts if that much. Don't know why you're having so much difficulty finding one though, both the nearest CC and BB have had OTA only(and Sat+OTA) receivers in stock, and on display everytime I've checked.


Less than a million products which will receive OTA DTV have been sold since 1998 in U.S. Therefore, production costs for low production runs per "model" and the R&D costs are currently very high, and therefore few of us now are paying a lot of money for what amounts to what should be a few dollars in parts, if that much. Seems to me it should be maybe $20-50 retail, presently, at most. The main I/C likely being the most expensive single piece, again, due to R&D costs and low per "part" production runs.


In the U.K., last I heard something like 6-7 Million DTV receivers have been sold. I'm not sure, but I believe the entire situation there with OTA is different than is the case here in many aspects.


From what I've heard, sales of DTV receivers aren't going so well in other countries(Austraila and Germany, for example), and I doubt if things would be much different presently here where numbers of DTV viewers are concerned if we had $60 receivers that were "seperate". I don't think many current NTSC OTA viewers are going to feel a need to "upgrade" presently if they aren't doing it for HD and the NTSC signals are still there. Also, I don't believe many folks care to have a extra "box" hooked up to their TV, especially those TV's in the bedrooms, kitchen and garages. Although, if the NTSC signals are gone, they might choose to purchase a small, $20(or less hopefully) converter rather than a New $79-99 13" TV for the kitchen.


When millions and millions of DTV receivers start going into TV's which are being sold I'd think the cost will definitely go down. IMHO, DTV receiver should have started going n all TV's/VCR's etc BEFORE the first DTV station even came on the air. When real "mass production" of DTV receiver's begins to happen, I can't imagine the cost won't fall to a few dollars a piece for manufacturing costs to add DTV tuners to TV's/VCR's/etc, if that much. By the time we get to tuners being required in 25" TV(That's only 2 years away IF I read Schubin's memo right today --- 2005 --) and 19" TV's and by 2007 13" TV's, I doubt if it will increase the cost of buying a TV/VCR's/etc. very much, if at all.


I certianly could be wrong though, might take quite a number of 25~27" sold before the cost comes down, but somehow I'm thinking manufacturer's are going to "bite the bullet" a little as much as possible and keep the costs down as much as possible on ~27" and smaller TV's.


A Little "food for thought", I do remember buying a 27" RCA Stereo TV in 1987 and it was $800-900 Dollars, by the early 90's the same (more or less) TV was $300-400. Certianly a different circumstance alltogheter, but I think If one looks at the costs of TV's over the past 40 years or so, it's only been since the early 90's that 25" and larger TV's have been quite cheap.


IMO, it would not be a good thing for DTV(or the future of Over-the-air television for that matter) if the tuner mandate were somehow reversed. A TV that can't receive TV makes about as much sense to those of us whom are OTA viewers as purchasing a vehicle without wheels, or a PC without a Video Card or monitor. Once current analog OTA viewers replace their TV's with those with digital tuners, the DTV viewing audience will grow by leaps and bounds in comparison to what it is now. For many of my neighbors, for example, it will be a "plug and play" experience even for their "main TV", as the outdoor, directional antenna aimed towards the right place is already in use. It was already "plug and play" for me. Unless they get a HD display, except for the x-1 channel number and improved PQ/reception free of ghosts and static/etc, these folks might not even notice.


However, if many of those OTA only folks DON'T have tuners in their TV's that will work, will they go out and buy a TV that is not functional without what might be a $200-300 STB when analog shut off occurs, IF analog shut off can happen without them? Don't see how we can get to the "time of "cheap DTV receivers" if very few are buying them.


Certianly, I understand the feelings of those who don't want to pay ".01 Cents" Extra --- And I see nothing wrong with having displays or "monitors" available which are just that(no way to receive any programming on their own, whatsoever), and nothing else .... much along the lines of audio "receivers", and audio "amplifiers".


Just my .02.
 

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Hi everyone,

OK, how many of you guys are using the current Analog turners in your HDTV sets. My set has two of them and they have never been used.


So maybe Mits should refund me the cost of the two analog turners that I have no use for. Shoot My Directv STB has an analog OTA turner and I don't use that one. So there are three analog turners in my system that I don't use. So does anyone get my point here. My point is that we have been forced into spending our money for analog turners that we don't used. So what the differance if someone pays for a digital turner that does not get used?


Now do you see where this is going. The case most likly will be thrown out.
 

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Bruce,


I agree with your general "take" on the issue, but in answer to your question, I use all the NTSC tuners in all my TV's/VCR'

s for OTA reception, even the 2 NTSC tuners in my HD display with integrated, internal ATSC tuner. I certianly use my 2 HD/ATSC tuners much more now, however.


Which reminds me, I do get a laugh sometimes when I see "Internal NTSC tuner" specified in ads for expensive displays .....
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Nitewatchman
Bruce,


I agree with your general "take" on the issue, but in answer to your question, I use all the NTSC tuners in all my TV's/VCR'

s for OTA reception, even the 2 NTSC tuners in my HD display with integrated, internal ATSC tuner. I certianly use my 2 HD/ATSC tuners much more now, however.


Which reminds me, I do get a laugh sometimes when I see "Internal NTSC tuner" specified in ads for expensive displays .....
Hi Jeff,

I did spend $1000 for the Promise Module to upgrade my Mits HDTV, it gets used a-lot. My main point that I was trying to make is that there are a lot of features on my HD set that I never used such as the internal speakers, Picture in Picture, ETC. Look at how many VCRs that been sold that never been used in the timer record mode.
 

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Bruce,


Certianly -- I rarely use the internal speakers either, I never use the "v-chip" stuff. I also never use the "off air guides"/PSIP functions/channel remapping, or the Sat tuner on DTC-100 internal on my HDTV.


In some cases, it might be like having a A/C in an Alaska car ... Drive or move to Texas and you might want to turn it on :) ... If you have cable now, you might not need or use an OTA tuner, but move to an area w/o cable, have a prolonged cable outage due to a major ice storm/etc, or temporarily use OTA while your waiting for cable installation/etc, and you might be glad that OTA tuner is there. Course, it would be nice too if they included a cheap bowtie for UHF and Rabbit ears for VHF with every TV, too ...
 

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I may be wrong on this but I think I have the facts right. If I remember correctly the law does not required HDTV broad cast, it only requires Digital which would be what, 480? The HD portion was thrown in by the manufacturers to raise interest.


For example, locally the plan is to broadcast in 480. Two of the three stations say they will doe 16:9, one said it will stick with 4:3. THe local stations are taking the national HD feed and reducing it. The reason given is the cost of the HD transmitter compared to a Digital transmitter.


The mandated change over was a dumb idea, especially since the FED's predicted they could sell the existing frequencies at a later date to help balance the budget. Not mandating tuners is also a dumb idea since without the tuner there will be no local TV in the future, there will only be national feeds.


Think of it. On the local level there is local news and some selection as to what the local people want to watch. The programming caters to the character of the people to some extent. With no local station you can only watch what the national companies say you can. The power to sway the masses with biased reporting if limitless.


Digital TV will be the end of our freedom to choose what sort of programming we watch. Someone else will have control of how we teach our morals. Who knows, in 10 years everyone will think that the Civil War was over slavery, that Hitler was just a mis-understood person, that Stollin did things right, and the Asama and Sadam were freedom fighters trying to defend their way of life from the evil west. Who knows, maybe we will even be excepting of a tax on coffee that will "help the children in a fun way."


Thanks Bill.
 

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$9 or $100

According to NAB integrated ATSC tuners wil lonly cost $9 by 2006. Of course consider the source. Unfortunately, I don't know the date of this document (it looks to be at least a year old).
http://www.nab.org/Newsroom/Issues/d...TTAL080702.pdf


Edit: Just noticed the date - 8/7/2002


And found this article dated 8/9/2002

The CEA still expects them to cost $100, 5 years from now.

"The CEA admits that the price of incorporating DTV reception capability would decline to $100 within five years. "

http://www.reed-electronics.com/elec...=0&rme=0&cfd=1
 

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There are several really good arguments in this thread. I wanted to add my opinion. I feel (as others do) it is totally unfair to mandate that broadcasters switch to digital without mandating that receiving equipment be included in HDTVs. I have been pushing for this mandate for years and was happy when it was first announced. The CE companies are by far the biggest beneficiaries of the transition, and I am frustrated that they have chosen to go to court with this case. I want the case to be thrown out.
 
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