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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Given these options:


a) perfect TV with three tuners: two OTA tuners (NTSC and ATSC) and one ATSC digital cable ready tuner.


b) same TV as a) but only the ATSC cable ready tuner and $100 cheaper than a).


c) same TV as a) but only the OTA tuners and $100 cheaper than a).


d) same TV with no tuners at all, just a monitor, $200 dollars cheaper.


what would you choose?


After a several months ATSC OTA experience I can tell you, OTA sucks. I'd choose b) if cable is available, d) otherwise.


I wonder if ATSC OTA would've been easier had they chose COFDM instead of 8VSB. I guess I'll never know.


Check the article below. It seems to me the broadcasters are in dreamland.


--------------------------------------


Broadcasters Doubt Cable's DTV Set Deal


April 17, 2003 12:00am

Source: Reed Business Information - US


Multichannel News: Las Vegas-- Broadcasters are profoundly suspicious

that the digital TV interoperability agreement between cable

operators and consumer-electronics manufacturers could be a bad deal

for consumers.


What TV stations fear is that the December agreement between major

cable companies and CE firms will mean that DTV sets labeled "cable

ready" would not include a tuner that can receive either analog or

digital programming from an off-air antenna.


"One could have a cable-viewing device that is not a TV set," said

Lynn Claudy, chief engineer of the National Association of

Broadcasters, during a panel discussion April 7 at the trade group's

annual convention here.


Last year, the Federal Communications Commission ordered TV set

makers to include off-air DTV tuners under a phase-in plan that

begins with the largest units in July 2004 and works down to 13-inch

screens in 2007.


But Tribune Broadcasting president Patrick J. Mullen said the FCC

rule appeared to require the inclusion of DTV tuners only in sets

that also have off-air analog tuners. That could leave the door open

for the manufacture of DTV sets that are considered "cable-ready",

but have no off-air tuner at all.


Added Claudy, "That's clearly a loophole that we want to see closed."


The cable and CE companies have asked the FCC to codify the

interoperability agreement into federal regulations. Rick Chessen,

who heads the FCC's DTV transition task force, said it was "not

clear" whether the tuner issue highlighted by NAB was "an oversight"

or something "intentional" in the cable-CE agreement.


The agreement was not deliberately drafted to exclude off-air tuners,

insisted Consumer Electronics Association president Gary Shapiro.


"We were totally surprised by their concerns. There is no grand

conspiracy," Shapiro said.


One broadcast industry leader indicated the agreement intentionally

allows for cable-ready sets with no off-air digital tuner because of

the CEA's strong opposition to the FCC's digital-tuner mandate.


NAB deputy general counsel Valerie Schulte suggested that DTV sets

under the cable-CE agreement should be marked "not ready for

broadcast," rather than "cable ready."


Meanwhile, FCC chairman Michael Powell warned NAB attendees last

Tuesday that political pressure is mounting for the return of the

broadcast analog spectrum, a move that would signify the end of their

transition to all-digital broadcasting.


Powell said Congress is eager to reallocate the analog spectrum to

other users -- most likely public-safety organizations and wireless

companies -- and will not tolerate a prolonged DTV transition.


"You don't have that much political room," Powell said at a breakfast

session where he fielded questions from ABC journalist Sam Donaldson.

"Let me tell you something: There is not a comfortable political

climate for this to go on unnecessarily long.


"There are other constituencies waiting for spectrum. Wireless issues

have grown in their significance and their political interests."


TV stations may retain both their analog and digital licenses until

Dec. 31, 2006 or until 85 percent of TV households in a market can

receive off-air DTV signals, whichever is later.




>
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I guess it's obvious then that they are worrying about nothing since most people would get a monitor, it seems.
 

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> After a several months ATSC OTA experience I can tell you, OTA sucks. I'd choose b) if cable is available, d) otherwise.


My couple years of experience with OTA ATSC has been excellent -- and I currently receive consistent reception on 14 digital stations.


The only way that I would ever buy a set with a "cable-only" tuner would be if it were *cheaper* than a set with absolutely no tuner.
 

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Your poll is missing several choices:


1) ATSC OTA tuner (no NTSC tuner)


2) ATSC OTA tuner + ATSC cable tuner (again no NTSC tuner)


I haven't watched NTSC television for several years now and see no point in spending money on an obsolete piece of technology. Furthermore, digital (ATSC) tuners should be much cheaper to manufacture than analog (NTSC) ones since they lend themselves better to VLSI integration (fewer discrete analog components that have to be calibrated, etc.). I expect that, much like the PC graphics card industry, we'll see one or two chip tuners in the not too distant future. DTV set top boxes are relatively expensive these days only because the CEA manufacturers have failed to lower the prices and reap the benefits of econmies of scale.
 

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I choose the monitor because it follows a philosophy I believe in:

Do one thing, and do it very, very well.


Too bad their are so few monitors. Most sets have sound systems, speakers, and tuners. Most of it a complete waste that I never use.


The extra stuff all become compromises when the bean counters try to hit price points. They are usually sub-par, or worse the most important thing, the picture quality of the monitor, may be compromised to reduce costs due to all those useless addons.


All these regs are for creating digital TVs (note I don't say HDTVs). All-in-one cheap and small sets for the masses. Remember the government agenda: Kill analog. Reclaim the frequencies. Sell them again for billions. It has nothing to do with quality.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by HDTV_fan
Your poll is missing several choices:


1) ATSC OTA tuner (no NTSC tuner)


2) ATSC OTA tuner + ATSC cable tuner (again no NTSC tuner)


I haven't watched NTSC television for several years now and see no point in spending money on an obsolete piece of technology. Furthermore, digital (ATSC) tuners should be much cheaper to manufacture than analog (NTSC) ones since they lend themselves better to VLSI integration (fewer discrete analog components that have to be calibrated, etc.). I expect that, much like the PC graphics card industry, we'll see one or two chip tuners in the not too distant future. DTV set top boxes are relatively expensive these days only because the CEA manufacturers have failed to lower the prices and reap the benefits of econmies of scale.
I agree, the poll is missing those options, but at the time, all I wanted to show was a TV without any OTA tuners at all is definitely a product that can be sold in large quantities, perhaps even more than TVs with tuners of any kind. Therefore, the broadcasters' "fear" simply shows that they must be in a dreamland.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by dialog_gvf
I choose the monitor because it follows a philosophy I believe in:


Do one thing, and do it very, very well.


Too bad their are so few monitors. Most sets have sound systems, speakers, and tuners. Most of it a complete waste that I never use.


The extra stuff all become compromises when the bean counters try to hit price points. They are usually sub-par, or worse the most important thing, the picture quality of the monitor, may be compromised to reduce costs due to all those useless addons.


All these regs are for creating digital TVs (note I don't say HDTVs). All-in-one cheap and small sets for the masses. Remember the government agenda: Kill analog. Reclaim the frequencies. Sell them again for billions. It has nothing to do with quality.
But the poll said $200 cheaper, which is to assume your monitor quality will be the same regardless how many tuners.


In reality a CE manufacture will be suicidal to produce a monitor-only TV for mass consumption. The cost of tuners will be minimal compared to the tube anyway. The difference may just be $5 to $20, not $200.
 

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There can be $5 to $20 just in IP licenses for a receiver. And a receiverless monitor could also do away with speakers, sound system, and Dolby license which often are not quite what we want anyway. I have some huge speaker built into my RPTV that I don't even use. This makes it much larger.


So if they are going to start integrating receivers I would prefer they optionally do that in my Tivo, A/V receiver, or other STB, not my display.


- Tom
 
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