Is There Still A Converter Box Program In 2014? - Blogs - DTV USA Forum
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Is There Still A Converter Box Program In 2014?

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by , 12-28-2013 at 07:36 AM (1073 Views)



On February 17, 2009, all television stations ceased transmitting analog signals to the public and made the official switch to digital signals. That means people that previously relied on antennas and dishes on the roof will soon be out of luck and be without their television sets. If you are one of the people who still has an analog based signal in 2014, you might be without channel access, but converter boxes can help dramatically increase your options.

The Converter Box Program
To help people pay for the switch to digital cable signals, the government started a program centered around helping people obtain the boxes without paying out of pocket. This was a program that was available to every single US citizen. The program came in the form of a way to get two coupons that would be $40 each, entirely covering the cost of a converter box for the vast majority of people.

The problem comes from the fact that this program ended once the actual switch happened. A lot of people still, in 2014, need help and still donít have an analog television signal and are, as a result, without a television signal. For those people, there are still options out there, and plenty of boxes available, although you donít have the luxury of getting one for free. You could subscribe to cable or satellite television, but if those are not options that appeal to you, a converter box might be your only option.

How To Still Save Money
Using a converter box alone will help you save money. Local channels are even broadcast in HD, making it even more appealing to those who donít need a lot of extra channels, but still want to keep up with network television and the local news.

Craigslist
Craigslist is one of the largest classified ad sites on the entire internet, and with good reason. Craigslist can help you find almost anything, with television converter boxes being one of them. By buying one used on Craigslist, you can save a lot of money and get a great deal, without any of the hassle of dealing with a store. One of the most important things that you need to keep in mind, though, is that you should have already did all of your research and you should be aware of scammers acting on Craigslist. It is easy to scam people here without much regulation, but if you are smart and wary of anything that sounds too good to be true, you shouldnít have much to worry about.

eBay
eBay offers similar chances to save money, although you will also be protected to some degree. The systems that are in place on eBay make it easy to safely purchase things and not have to worry about the quality. Be careful to read all of the ads, though, and make sure that you know what they are selling so that you arenít caught off guard or caught in a technicality.

Making The Switch
Switching to a digital signal wonít offer you too many signals, but it can help you add to your existing channels if you have a set top box, or can simply add a little bit of free television into your life. Think about saving money on one, though, if you want to have the best deal and save as much money as possible.

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Comments

  1. Rickideemus's Avatar
    On February 17, 2009, all television stations ceased transmitting analog signals to the public and made the official switch to digital signals. That means people that previously relied on antennas and dishes on the roof will soon be out of luck and be without their television sets.
    Sorry, this is wrong. The antennas that worked with analog signals will still work with digital. People will still have their television sets. Old analog TVs will require a converter box to handle OTA signals. Relatively few analog sets remain in the U.S. -- fewer every year. Modern TVs work fine with digital.

    If you are one of the people who still has an analog based signal in 2014, you might be without channel access, but converter boxes can help dramatically increase your options.
    Analog based TV signals are very unusual in the U.S. today. A converter box does NOT help interpret analog signals. Many converters actually block analog signals.

    R.
  2. seatacboy's Avatar
    Brand-new converter boxes are still for sale, but the NTIA $40 converter box subsidy program from 2008-2009 is long gone. Walmart stores sell the RCA DTA800B1 sourced from AVS Multimedia. Fry's Electronics sells a Naxa-brand converter box (which I have heard is not very good) and a KCPI DT504 that resembles the Apex 502. Amazon sells the Zinwell DAT-970A, the Homeworx HW100STB, the RCA DTA800B1, the KCPI DT504, and models from Supersonic, Axess and other firms, some of which are brand-new and others (Insignia, Zenith et al) being new-old-stock.

    Over the past year, I have purchased about six used converter boxes at Goodwill and St. Vincent de Paul stores for my one non-ATSC-equipped CRT television. These include one Channel Master CM7000 without remote, one Zenith DTT 900 with remote, one Zenith DTT900 without remote, one Apex 502 with remote, one RCA DTA800B with remote, a Magnavox with remote and at least one other.
    Updated 12-30-2013 at 06:26 AM by seatacboy
  3. Rickideemus's Avatar
    A used converter box goes for about $35 on eBay. You might get by cheaper at Goodwill, but that's a lot of walking. Who pays for that? Much better to get a new TV than six converters.
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