Question: any " full feature" converter box exist?

Q-ship

DTVUSA Rookie
#1
Hi, does anyone know if there is an OTA antenna box that will transmit all channels over HDMI?

The problem I have found is that of the couple current (China) boxes I have tried, none will pass SD through the HDMI, so some channels are not viewable.

If such a box does not exist, does anyone know of a box that will up-convert the SD to HD and then transmit through the HDMI?

Lastly, I have a two LED TV's, one is a month old, and the other is under 4 years old. Neither one will pick up all the OTA channels through the built in tuner that an old Zenith antenna box will pick up through coax input. Why is that?

Thanks for any help.
 

MrPogi

Moderator, , Webmaster of Cache Free TV
Staff member
#3
Hi, does anyone know if there is an OTA antenna box that will transmit all channels over HDMI?

The problem I have found is that of the couple current (China) boxes I have tried, none will pass SD through the HDMI, so some channels are not viewable.

If such a box does not exist, does anyone know of a box that will up-convert the SD to HD and then transmit through the HDMI?

Lastly, I have a two LED TV's, one is a month old, and the other is under 4 years old. Neither one will pick up all the OTA channels through the built in tuner that an old Zenith antenna box will pick up through coax input. Why is that?

Thanks for any help.
Okay, lets start over. First, what boxes have you tried? What antenna are you using, and where is it located? Please do a reception report here: https://www.tvfool.com/index.php?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=29 and post the resulting link url back here so we can see what's happening on your end and we can sort this out.
 

Q-ship

DTVUSA Rookie
#4
Thanks for the replies.

To "Fringe Reception", I am waiting for a response to my emailed question as to whether the Channel Master box you suggested will pass all formats through HDMI. Thanks for the suggestion.

"MrPogi", the two boxes I tried were from ebay, one was an "upstar", the other was a "HomeWorx 150", neither one will pass 480p through the HDMI. Some of the ebay boxes even state this, others doesn't offer any info about this, but it appears to be the norm that 480p is only passed through the coax output for some reason.

Since it is an expensive hobby to keep trying different boxes to see if they will pass 480p through HDMI, and calls/emails to domestic web based companies have either gone un-answered, or they don't know, I joined here to see if others may have run into this problem and possible solution.

I have even been told that HDMI can't transmit less than 720p by some of the big name internet OTA companies, which is of course not true as even Direct TV transmits 480p channels over HDMI with no problem.

The reason for my question is that some of the OTA channels transmit in 480p so it would be nice to have the option of viewing those channels which is no problem if your TV has coax inputs and you have even the oldest/cheapest converter box. However, this locks out things like computer monitors and many TV's/monitors that only have HDMI or DVI inputs. ...... I like HD as well as anyone, but there is a ton of great old shows that I don't mind watching in their original format, or at least having the option to watch them.

As a bit of back story, my Mom just bought a place in Phoenix, AZ that had an old tube tv and Zenith converter box left behind. The antenna is of unknown manufacture but looks like any of the current offerings. As we were working on the place prior to move in I became amazed at what was available OTA so I kept the OTA connected when I set up her LED TV with with access to my HD slingbox, Netflix account, and XBMC. However I find that we watch OTA most of the time when I go visit!

The problem (and reason for my questions) came up as I was setting up a bedroom TV for her, and trying to simplify the ability to switch from OTA to other inputs. Also, I decided that I want OTA at my place, but quickly discovered that converter boxes, and even built in tuners won't pick up all that is available OTA. It's important to understand that this is not an antenna or reception problem, it is a hardware manufacturing shortcoming.

Once again I ask everyone, is there a converter box (HDMI w/usb PVR), that will transmit all programming over the HDMI? ..... I'm guessing that the vast majority of people are not even aware of what they are not receiving even though it is available.

Thanks for the input, I look forward to learning more.
 
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MrPogi

Moderator, , Webmaster of Cache Free TV
Staff member
#5
I own a Homeworx 150 PVR, and it does indeed pass digital 480 SD. It will not see any Analog, however. I got every SD channel, although the tuner isn't quite as sensitive as my TV sets.

Now, if you can post a pic of your antenna it would be helpful. Also, if you have a longer cable run and/or splitting the signal, you are having more signal loss than you previously had.
 
#6
I think you are dealing with three issues. Coax and splitter loss, tuner sensitivity, and a confusion about ATSC digital SD signals, and NTSC analog SD signals. NTSC analog television signals are almost extinct in this country, and any of the few remaining ones are likely to be gone soon. While there may be others the only currently available set top boxes that I am aware of that have both NTSC, and ATSC tuners are the ones from ePVision. I'm not recommending or endorsing their product because I don't think having an NTSC tuner will solve your problems. To the best of my knowledge all televisions sold in this country still have both NTSC, and ATSC tuners. In order to be sold as a television they have to have a tuner, and therefor a coax input. If there is no coax input it is a monitor not a television. Most televisions also have both composite SD video, component HD video inputs. Most television stations transmit one HD channel and at least one often times more SD sub channels. If you are not receiving all digital channels both HD and SD the most likely cause is a lack of signal from inadequate antenna, or excessive coax and splitter loss. A common problem is poorly done coax connectors, or use of old RG59 coax. All coax runs should be tested for continuity and shorts. I've ran into problems with the center conductor of RG59 not being of large enough diameter to make good connection. The Zenith DTT 901 is known to be one of the best converter boxes built, but it is not HD, and is no longer in production. Not all tuners are created equal some seem to be far worse than others.
There is a far less common problem in some areas that some low budget broadcasters can't seem to get worked out. It's what I would call slightly corrupted or nonstandard PSIP that some receivers can not decode and channel map correctly. I've seen this myself and have read about it in other areas of the country.
Steve
 
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