TVs & Home Theaters forum

General discussion

Digital-to-Analog TV Converter Box Teach me all you know!

by tubaloth / March 13, 2008 1:15 AM PDT

So, I like many others just got my coupons in the mail (for $40 off) a TV Converter Box.
They list a good selection that I can choose from, but now its just a matter of getting some reviews.

So which Digital-to-Analog TV Converter Box is best?

I already have pretty good set of Bunny ears that I have had for 3 years now. Do I need to buy a new set of ears? Or are the ones I have good enough? (From what I am gathering, there are better antennas for digital signal, but the ones I have well work? is this correct or not?)

How hard is it to set up these boxs? Do I need any extra cables that I don't already have.

I do assume that I can plug this box into the VCR, run the VCR to the tv? That it can still record just like normal?

Do I change the channel on the TV, or on the Converter Box?

Is there a way I can split this signal coming from the Converter Box, so it goes to my TV AND to my Computer? (I doubt I well do this, just wondering if it is possible)

I hope Cnet does some guides for all of this i searched there site but nothing came up.
I don't see any point in waiting to by the Converter box if I can get better looking TV now????

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If you have an analog TV. . .
by Coryphaeus / March 13, 2008 8:13 AM PDT

you won't see any difference.

The converter is the tuner and connects to the TV. But since you told us nothing about your TV, this is as far as I can go. The box will tune the channels. Can you split the signal? Yep, but only on an analog output from the box.

Tell us more about your system now.

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Answers
by HTHMAN / March 13, 2008 8:53 AM PDT

So, I like many others just got my coupons in the mail (for $40 off) a TV Converter Box.
They list a good selection that I can choose from, but now its just a matter of getting some reviews.


I already have pretty good set of Bunny ears that I have had for 3 years now. Do I need to buy a new set of ears? Or are the ones I have good enough? (From what I am gathering, there are better antennas for digital signal, but the ones I have well work? is this correct or not?)

A. Those ears look really good. Try them.

How hard is it to set up these boxs? Do I need any extra cables that I don't already have.

A. Looks like you are well stocked with cables.

I do assume that I can plug this box into the VCR, run the VCR to the tv? That it can still record just like normal?

A. Assume nothing. Read the manual.

Do I change the channel on the TV, or on the Converter Box?

A. What do you think? It is a TUNER box.

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Converter Answers
by gabereyes / March 13, 2008 3:06 PM PDT

The new converter boxes are very easy to setup, it has one rabbit ear hookup and two outputs one is the RF coax and a composite yellow white, and red output, they come with both cables in the box.

So you can use the RF coax output to the TV and/or VCR and just turn them to channel 3 or 4, or use the RCA output and turn the TV and/or VCR to the correct input.

you might need a better set of ears, but try what you got first.
digital is all or nothing, its not like analog where the channel comes in fuzzy or has gosting if the channels not very strong.

and yes the box comes with a remote to change the channels, and you can program it to operate the TV set very easy.

good luck
gabe

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What?
by tubaloth / March 18, 2008 6:52 AM PDT
In reply to: Converter Answers

So my TV is an Analog TV (I don't see how that helped it all?)


Read the manual? What kind of answer is that?

Why would I need to have the converter box remote be able to control the TV? I guess unless I'm watching a VHS>?

I'll probably have to buy one.
Any idea which one is better?

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An attempt to make it even simpler
by HTHMAN / March 18, 2008 8:30 AM PDT
In reply to: What?

You have a VCR, right? Have you ever changed channels on the VCR an watched that channel come up on your TV screen? Well, that is exactly how the converter box is going to work. You are NOT going to use the tuner in your TV or VCR anymore. You are going to tune with the converter box and your TV will act as a monitor.

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Digital-to-Analog TV Converter Box
by Paul97402 / June 16, 2008 9:29 AM PDT

Ignorance is not bad. Just as a computer wiz may be completely ignorant of neuroscience, likewise a brain surgeon may not know the difference between digital and analog or between a tuner and a monitor. Please forgive us our ignorance, and be as compassionate and helpful as you can.

Unfortunately for tubaloth and me, the primary question of "which Digital-to-Analog TV Converter Box is best?" still hasn't been addressed. I'm reasonably savvy to electronics and computers, but not at all to television signal processing, so (like tubaloth) I came to c-net looking for product comparisons and reviews, or advice to aid me in selecting a converter box. If there are any knowledgeable, compassionate and helpful-feeling folks who'd like to give me some advice, warnings, shared experiences, or reference to other websites, lemme have it.
Tks.

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Converter Box List and Antenna Recommendation
by antennaguy / June 18, 2008 3:31 AM PDT

The $40 coupons can only be used on 16 brands of converter boxes with the "analog pass-through" feature:

APEX DT250
Apex DT500
CASTi CAX-02
DIGITAL STREAM DSP7700T
DIGITAL STREAM DTX9950
DIGITAL STREAM DX8700
DISH Network DTVPal
Jiuzhou DTT9001
Magnavox TB-100MG9
Microprose MPI-500
Philco TB100HH9
Philco TB150HH9
RCA DTA800B1
Skardin DTR-0727L
TATUNG TDB3001
Venturer STB7766G1

I?ve heard good things about the RCA DTA800B1.

Your rabbit ears have technology roots going back 30 to 50 years or more. Recent regulations and standards are opening new doors for antenna engineers to develop smaller antennas with improved performance, power and aesthetics.

You didn?t say where you live, but if you live in a metro/urban area, obstructions such as tall buildings, you?ll have to deal with Multi-path. Multi-path is caused by these buildings and any other hard object in the line-of-sight to the broadcast towers. They cause signals to reach the antenna out of phase, confusing the ATSC (Digital) chip set in the converter box or tuner (for analog or digital TV sets). If the signal reaching the front of the antenna is not 2 to 3 times stronger than a bounced signal from the same station reaching the back of the antenna, the ATSC chip doesn?t know which signal to use, so it just keeps searching.

The answer is to up-grade to a new digital antenna, tuned to receive digital signals that help reject Multi-path signals and save your rabbit ears as a collectible.

To check out free OTA options, viewers can go to antennapoint.com to easily locate the broadcast stations within range, aiming directions and other OTA helpful information.

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NEEDS FIXING OR THROW OUT- Apex Digital Converter DT25OA

Had my converter box (Apex Digital Analog Converter DT250A) for 1 year. Box recently had interference, shut down, played, then buzzed and lost all picture and sound. Red light did not come on. Green light stayed on all night. Green light is still on and still no picture or sound. Converter and TV connections have not been touched or moved since installation last year. Is it it the box? Can it be fixed?? ...or do I toss??? Any and all responses are much appreciated.

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Needs Fixing or Throw Out
by cuz2828 / August 15, 2010 12:16 PM PDT

I just had the same thing happen today. What did you end up doing?

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Dump The Thing!
by scarecrow2350 / August 16, 2010 6:57 AM PDT

Nothing I could do. Info I found out is that the quality of this Apex product is of extremely awful quality. You and I are not the only ones' that this has happened to. Time to get another one. One that IS NOT the Apex brand.

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