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ok so i am finally making the jump from analog cable


i will be buying an hdtv.

i am kinda waiting for comcast to offer hd cable in my area (hollywood, fl) before deciding between satellite or cable


in the meantime, i would like to get the hd broadcasts.. already have an antenna picked out.


ok but what else do i need? the tv is "hdtv ready" so do i still need a receiver to pick up the antenna broadcast too?


thanks!
 

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yes you will need to buy an HD receiver. The HDTV designation signifies that the set has an internal ATSC tuner/decoder, as well as meeting the widescreen specifications often required to be considered a true HDTV. An HD-Ready TV requires a separate HD receiver. Make sure that your HD-Ready TV has DVI or even better DVI-HDMI inputs. It should also include component input for DVD player compatibility as older input devices are not likely to have the DVI output.
 

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The reply above was 100% correct, but I thought I would add a couple of things that I would have wanted to know, prior to making any purchases...


1.) If a TV is a true HDTV, it comes with a built in HDTV tuner. BUT, that tuner is only good for over the air broadcasts (usually). It usually will not work with any Cable TV's HDTV signals (yet), and it will definitely not work with DirecTV or with Dish Network.


2.) If a TV says it is HDTV-Ready, or HDTV-compatible, that means it has no HDTV tuner at all; that is the type of set you mentioned, of course.


3.) Here is where it gets a bit tricky.... if you decide to buy an HDTV-ready set, AND you decide to buy an HDTV tuner as a separate set top box...


-a.) There is one type of HDTV box that will only let you receive HDTV over the air signals. It is identical (essentially) to the ones built into number one, above.


-b.) There is a second type of HDTV box which will let you watch DirecTV HDTV signals, AND it also does double duty and lets you receive over the air signals. If this is the final plan, you may not want to waste your money on a true HDTV set, and you may not want to waste your money by buying the type of HDTV box mentioned in "a.)" above, even as a temporary solution, unless you will want to E-Bay that first box later. Your new DirecTV box will do everything the box in "a.)" does.



-c.) There is a third type of HDTV box which will let you watch Dish Network HDTV signals, AND it also does double duty and lets you receive over the air signals. If this is the final plan, you may not want to waste your money on a true HDTV set, and you may not want to waste your money by buying the type of HDTV box mentioned in "a.)" above, even as a temporary solution, unless you will want to E-Bay that first box later. Your new Dish Network box will do everything the box in "a.)" does.



-d.) There is a fourth type of HDTV box which will let you watch Cable TV HDTV signals, but the Cable companies usually rent these to you, or include them in the overall cost of their HDTV package. Some of these Cable TV HDTV boxes also do double duty and will let you watch over-the-air HDTV, but many of them will not. So, in this case, planning is really tough.


Just some thoughts to ponder...


-Bruce in Chi-Town
 

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And I'll add my $.02 worth. If cable is going to be offering HD soon, that still doesn't mean it will offer all the channels that you can get OTA. You need to find out what they will be offering and compare that to the satellite offerings and see what works for you.


I only get CBS, ABC, and PBS via cable. Even though I would like (and will eventually get) the others, I find that these and the premium HD channels (HBO, SHO, etc.) keep me plenty busy and I can wait for the others. If, however, I wanted NBC, WB, and UPN, then I would have opted to go with DirecTV.


It doesn't make much sense to me to go with an OTA-only box, especially as an interim solution, unless you can get a really good deal on eBay, like under $200. With the service credits and discounts DirecTV is offering, I think you'd do well to consider that as the only option vs cable.


The other thing to consider though is how much trouble you might have receiving OTA in your area. Ability to receive analog channels is a good indicator of how well you will be able to receive digital channels, but it is not fool-proof. Here, in Phoenix, it is relatively flat, etc., but plenty of folks still find getting an acceptable signal a real trial and error process. Eventually, they hit the right combination of antenna and direction and it all comes together. You can check antennaweb.org to see what antenna type they recommend and what digitals are available to you.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by BSpielbauer
The reply above was 100% correct, but I thought I would add a couple of things that I would have wanted to know, prior to making any purchases...


1.) If a TV is a true HDTV, it comes with a built in HDTV tuner. BUT, that tuner is only good for over the air broadcasts (usually). It usually will not work with any Cable TV's HDTV signals...
Current Hitachi & Mitsubishi integrated HDTV's, and the LG LST-3510A & LST-3100A STB's have a QAM tuner, which will receive unencoded cable HDTV, where available. Comcast & TWC are examples of cableco's that do not encode local HDTV channels.
 
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