Tuesday, September 30, 2008

How to pick a DTV converter box?

On February 17, 2009, the United States will transition from analog to digital signals. If you use rabbit ears / antenna to get your signals, you will no longer be able to after that date, as all station will be move to digital. The move is so they can use it for something else, and save bandwidth. It's also good and bad for those depending on antenna. You need to go and get a converter box from your local electronic retailer. Depending on the kind you get the price varies. But the government is willing to give you $40 credit ($40 off the price of the store). So if it cost $60 which is usually the case, you pay only $20. There are also cheaper converter boxes. Make sure where you buy accepts the coupon.

Not all converter box are the same, some come with different features. So be aware of them. Some come with self antenna, which can help pick up the signal, very few of these. If you gonna pick one, pick one of the more popular brand. Zenith from Circuit City is pretty good.

The pro is that the signal is clear when you are able to get the signal. The con is when you don't get the signal well enough, picture becomes pixelated, and sound distorted. So it's kind of a all or nothing kind of experience. Another pro is that you get to see what showing on the current channel description of it and also the next show, this may depend on the features of the box. So not every box may have it. Some may also come with a extra button so that you can turn on the tv and off. The size of the converter box, and remote may differ, depends on your preference. Another different thing is you may be able to detect the signal strength, so you can angle the antenna to get the greatest signal strength. Another pro is that you get sub-channels from the broadcast station. I get extra channels I didn't see from the basic antenna, such as the weather channel, which is neat. Wish it came with a round the clock news channel too.

I recommend the converter box from Circuit City, Zenith DTT900 or the Zenith DTT901.

---> Apply for the coupon here. ---

Best Buy converter box here.

Circuit City converter box here.

Walmart converter box here.


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