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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all! It's Christmas time, and my family wants to know what I want for Christmas! Well, I want a High-Def STB to go with my Pany 40" WS LCD HDTV. I'm not really sure what is good to buy. The price range is anywhere up to $500. Can someone please recommend to me a good box? I would like something that decode High-Def as well as regular cable channels because I have AT&T Digital Cable and the picture is god awful on my tv. Thanks in advance.
 

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Do you want a HD STB that does both Directv and OTA or just OTA?
 

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Currently no STB does both HD and regular cable. Look at the FAQ above for a choice of STB's and information about them.

Hope this was quick enough for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I don't want anything to do with Direct TV, cuz I don't have it.... Fine. If nothing does both OTA and cable can you guys recommend a good one that does OTA? I have a RGB connection on my tv also.
 

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That leaves you with Samsung and maybe a model from Zenith if you can still find one BUT you do not always need to subscribe to Direct to use the STB. At your price range look at the Samsung.
 

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Some STBs have cable ready NTSC tuners in addition to the ATSC OTA tuners. A box like the Samsung T165 would fit the bill. No HDTV STB will be able to decode digital cable channels (usually numbered 100 or above), however.


You could use an OTA-only box. The panasonic TV should have a cable ready tuner for cable TV. The Zenith HDV420, The Samsung SIRT151, and the soon-to-be-released Panasonic box are all available for around $400.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the responses - very much appreciated! Ok, this might sound stupid. The main reason why I am getting a STB is because of the show 24. It's on FOX, and it's broadcast in HD WS. Right now I'm watching it through AT&T Digital cable, and the picture is HORRIBLE. It ruins my viewing experience. Also, the sound sucks just coming from my tv. I need 5.1 surround when watching this show! :) So, the question is, if I get an OTA box only, then will it be able to broadcast the FOX channel since that is a cable channel? How will this work? Will the STB tune in to my cable box and broadcast the HD channels in it, or will it just locate HD channels by itself and only broadcast those? Please help.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by marthalamew0
Thanks for the responses - very much appreciated! Ok, this might sound stupid. The main reason why I am getting a STB is because of the show 24. It's on FOX, and it's broadcast in HD WS. Right now I'm watching it through AT&T Digital cable, and the picture is HORRIBLE. It ruins my viewing experience. Also, the sound sucks just coming from my tv. I need 5.1 surround when watching this show! :) So, the question is, if I get an OTA box only, then will it be able to broadcast the FOX channel since that is a cable channel? How will this work? Will the STB tune in to my cable box and broadcast the HD channels in it, or will it just locate HD channels by itself and only broadcast those? Please help.
Fox is a regular network with local broadcast affiliates. You may get it via cable now, but your cable operator is getting it from a nearby local station, not directly from Fox. So my guess would be that you can get if off the air with an antenna. Also, I don't think Fox is doing any real HD; I think they max out at widescreen 480p--better than regular analog TV, but not HD.


An STB will not connect to your cable box. Available HD STBs can tune digital and analog TV off the air, usually analog cable channels if the cable system sends them down the wire in standard form, and sometimes satellite.
 

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Be aware FOX does not broadcast in HD like the other networks. A few of their affiliates broadcast some programs in digital 16:9 480p, but not all. My local FOX station only broadcasts from the 4:3 analog feed on the digital channel, no better than the cable feed. Check what your local FOX station does before buying a lot of stuff that may not give you what you want.
 
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