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I have an old TV - 20 years. It's a Sony and still works great, but is not 'digital ready'.

I do have cable, but an analog box. I read that my cable company will still air analog signals for 3 years after "the date", but want everyone to upgrade to digital service which costs a LOT more per month. I hate paying for TV. I do want the extended basic cable to see SciFi and Discovery channels though. Also like Animal Planet, Bravo, TNT, etc.

I have lots of time yet to get that wide screen TV for my wall. I just need about $2,000 to get what I want.

I have a sinking feeling that come 2/09 all my TV viewing will be black screens.
 

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The last I knew there will no longer be analog signals after 2009, but people with old TVs will still be able to use them by adding a converter box that's supposed to cost about $50. There will supposedly be coupons for people who can't afford to pay the $50.

I know that applies to people who receive their TV signals from an antenna. I'm not sure whether it applies to people who receive cable or satellite.
 

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Those converter boxes are for people who use antennas or rabbit ears for TV reception. Lots of people in rural areas still use those.

My cable company has me set up with an analog box and on their website, they state they will continue to transmit analog for 3 more years.
 

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I know ours will be turning off the analog signal in 2009.
Your TV needs an analog box because it isn't capable to descramble the signal. I believe you will need what Lisa suggested it, Thank you Lisa!
 

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No, I checked today with my cable company. They are a pretty big outfit here in DC area. I think more than 60% are using analog boxes for cable reception. Not everyone went for the digital package. They would lose a lot of money if everyone left.

The FCC does allow some analog transmittal after the 2/09 date and that is what my cable company is banking on.
 

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I am not questioning what yours is doing. I work for a cable company here in Colorado and after 2009 there will be no more (except for the Mountains that don't have an ALL DIGITAL signal node/headend), it varies greatly from area to area, every market is different.


It's only over the air broadcaster that stop broadcasting in analog after Feb 2009. Cable CO's will still send analog signals (except for all digital areas) after that date. At least for a while. They will, however, continue to trim the analog channel lineup in order to add more HD channels.
 

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hypertweeky said:
I am not questioning what yours is doing. I work for a cable company here in Colorado and I know ours will be 2009 and no more after that.
Good Luck!
I am not in anyway educated on this as I made the original post, but my cable company says this on their website:

Will consumers be able to watch digital TV on their existing analog sets?

All Cox customers will be able to watch these stations on any TV hooked up to cable. Cox Digital Cable customers already receive these channels in digital format, and Cox is committed to converting these broadcast channels for its analog customers for at least three years after this deadline. Non-cable customers can subscribe to our service or obtain an digital-to-analog converter box from many retail outlets beginning in mid-February 2008.
 

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As I said before, It varies from one cable company to another.
It is important to know that what is being turned off is the broadcasted air signal NOT the actual analog signal, a person that does not subscribe to cable TV won't be able to use rabbit ears, however our customers will still be able to hook up their TV's straight to the outlet in the wall to receive standard channels (2-99), however the line up will gradually migrate to digital meaning a box will be required to view that channel. For instance in our market we have migrated many channels to digital in the last year or so, MSNBC used to be on channel 45 and is now on channel 125 which means that a customer who subscribe to standard cable will need to subscribe to a digital package to view this channel.
I know it can be confusing, so I definitely understand why cable customers are so concerned about this. :D
 

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hypertweeky said:
As I said before, It varies from one cable company to another.
It is important to know that what is being turned off is the broadcasted air signal NOT the actual analog signal, a person that does not subscribe to cable TV won't be able to use rabbit ears, however our customers will still be able to hook up their TV's straight to the outlet in the wall to receive standard channels (2-99), however the line up will gradually migrate to digital meaning a box will be required to view that channel. For instance in our market we have migrated many channels to digital in the last year or so, MSNBC used to be on channel 45 and is now on channel 125 which means that a customer who subscribe to standard cable will need to subscribe to a digital package to view this channel.
I know it can be confusing, so I definitely understand why cable customers are so concerned about this. :D
All it sums up to is more money for cable. I've been batting the idea of going with satellite or FIOS. I have some time. I really want a new TV.
 

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yepp said:
Will consumers be able to watch digital TV on their existing analog sets?

All Cox customers will be able to watch these stations on any TV hooked up to cable. Cox Digital Cable customers already receive these channels in digital format, and Cox is committed to converting these broadcast channels for its analog customers for at least three years after this deadline. Non-cable customers can subscribe to our service or obtain an digital-to-analog converter box from many retail outlets beginning in mid-February 2008.
Read this carefully....it doesn't say that they will continue to broadcast analog signals. It says that they you will be able to watch digital TV on your analog set because they will convert digital signals for analog customers. See the blue text above.

Whether they do the conversion on their end or whether you will need a box on your end is the question...
 

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Good point doodle. This company has nickled and dimed me for many years. They are crafty when it comes to cable bills.
 

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yepp said:
hypertweeky said:
As I said before, It varies from one cable company to another.
It is important to know that what is being turned off is the broadcasted air signal NOT the actual analog signal, a person that does not subscribe to cable TV won't be able to use rabbit ears, however our customers will still be able to hook up their TV's straight to the outlet in the wall to receive standard channels (2-99), however the line up will gradually migrate to digital meaning a box will be required to view that channel. For instance in our market we have migrated many channels to digital in the last year or so, MSNBC used to be on channel 45 and is now on channel 125 which means that a customer who subscribe to standard cable will need to subscribe to a digital package to view this channel.
I know it can be confusing, so I definitely understand why cable customers are so concerned about this. :D
All it sums up to is more money for cable. I've been batting the idea of going with satellite or FIOS. I have some time. I really want a new TV.
Not necessarily...you can choose to receive over the air HD signals. It means getting the right antenna and an HDTV...money that doesn't go to the cable or satellite company.

Technology has moved on, the majority of the customers have voluntarily moved to the new technology because they find value in it. To sustain the old technology costs money. So they can charge exorbitant amounts for the old technology or they can make everyone move to almost outdated newer technology (because standard definition digital TV is not long for this world either).
 

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doodlebug said:
yepp said:
hypertweeky said:
As I said before, It varies from one cable company to another.
It is important to know that what is being turned off is the broadcasted air signal NOT the actual analog signal, a person that does not subscribe to cable TV won't be able to use rabbit ears, however our customers will still be able to hook up their TV's straight to the outlet in the wall to receive standard channels (2-99), however the line up will gradually migrate to digital meaning a box will be required to view that channel. For instance in our market we have migrated many channels to digital in the last year or so, MSNBC used to be on channel 45 and is now on channel 125 which means that a customer who subscribe to standard cable will need to subscribe to a digital package to view this channel.
I know it can be confusing, so I definitely understand why cable customers are so concerned about this. :D
All it sums up to is more money for cable. I've been batting the idea of going with satellite or FIOS. I have some time. I really want a new TV.
Not necessarily...you can choose to receive over the air HD signals. It means getting the right antenna and an HDTV...money that doesn't go to the cable or satellite company.

Technology has moved on, the majority of the customers have voluntarily moved to the new technology because they find value in it. To sustain the old technology costs money. So they can charge exorbitant amounts for the old technology or they can make everyone move to almost outdated newer technology (because standard definition digital TV is not long for this world either).
I wasn't referring to HDTV's though. My TV has a built in HD decoder an It picks up the air broad casted channels without the need for a box..

Agreed!
 

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All I know is that I'm going to be messed over. My TV is a little 10-inch set made about 50 years ago. I don't have cable or satellite (and don't want it and can't afford it). The set doesn't even have a hook-up thingie in the back for a box. I certainly can't afford a new TV. Wonder how long I'll be able to make it without a picture box? :(
 

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CataholicsAnonymous said:
All I know is that I'm going to be messed over. My TV is a little 10-inch set made about 50 years ago. I don't have cable or satellite (and don't want it and can't afford it). The set doesn't even have a hook-up thingie in the back for a box. I certainly can't afford a new TV. Wonder how long I'll be able to make it without a picture box? :(
I see cheap cable ready TV's on craiglist all the time!
You can have basic cable (20 channels) for $15.00 month..
 

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Yeah...with all the people making the switch to HD, there's gotta be tons and tons of used TVs around for next to nothing....maybe even nothing if you check Freecycle.
 

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Thanks for the ideas. You can bet I'll be checking around for a cheap used one. I have no desire whatsoever to get cable, but even though I don't watch a lot of TV, it's on most of the time for "company". And I don't think I'd make it too long without PBS!
 

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I was surprised to find that my new Toshiba 27" tv is able to receive some digital channels. They are mostly music-video channels that I don't watch, but it was cool to find it had that feature.
I don't plan to buy digital cable. But I'm curious to see if any of the 'good' channels, like Sci-Fi, TCM, TBS, etc., start appearing among the digital channels my tv can recieve.
 

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CataholicsAnonymous said:
All I know is that I'm going to be messed over. My TV is a little 10-inch set made about 50 years ago. I don't have cable or satellite (and don't want it and can't afford it). The set doesn't even have a hook-up thingie in the back for a box. I certainly can't afford a new TV. Wonder how long I'll be able to make it without a picture box? :(
Here is the link to the FCC's program of giving away $40 coupons for the new converter boxes. I've already got one for my dad, they work very good. The box was $49, so I had to pay the $9 difference and the sales taxes, so it was around $12.

https://www.dtv2009.gov/ApplyCoupon.aspx
 

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This is SO unrelated but...I really wish you could order cable by the channel...like $2 per channel, you pick which ones. :) I only watch about 6 channels but pay almost $100 for them. :(
 
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