QAM tuner questions

Renderer

DTVUSA Rookie
#1
Just bought a new Sony Bravia V series LCD HDTV, how can I tell which channels are QAM? I live in Los Angeles Ca. Also, what happens if all of the basic cable channels go digital? Does that mean my QAM tuner will be able to pick up all of the channels then?
 

bicker

DTVUSA Member
#2
Generally, where cable services have gone "all-digital", they have actually left the local broadcast channels as analog. (There is a higher cost to the service provider if they go literally all-digital, meaning all channels. The term "all-digital" therefore typically means "all-cable-channels-by-digital".) The service provider may also offer the local broadcast channels via QAM, either standard resolution (called "ADS" -- analog digital simulcast) and/or high definition. However, their provision of the local broadcast channel as analog (as noted above), satisfies their obligations under the regulations, and therefore they could still encrypt the QAM versions of the local broadcast channels, if they wish. However, they typically don't do so, once they go "all-digital".

Of course, if the service provider truly goes all-digital (i.e., no providing the local broadcast channels as analog) then they are required to provide them via QAM "in the clear" (not encrypted). (They may still encrypt HD versions, if they are providing separate SD versions.)

In terms of cable networks, typically once a service provider goes "all-digital" (again, meaning all-cable-channels-by-digital) they tend to no longer encrypt the cable channels. (This is again because of a cost that regulations would impose on them if they did encrypt those channels.) So with regard to cable networks, in this scenario, generally the first tier of cable networks will be available, via QAM "in-the-clear".

Of course, everything is subject to variances within each local area.

I hope this helps.
 

Renderer

DTVUSA Rookie
#3
Of course, if the service provider truly goes all-digital (i.e., no providing the local broadcast channels as analog) then they are required to provide them via QAM "in the clear" (not encrypted). (They may still encrypt HD versions, if they are providing separate SD versions.)

In terms of cable networks, typically once a service provider goes "all-digital" (again, meaning all-cable-channels-by-digital) they tend to no longer encrypt the cable channels. (This is again because of a cost that regulations would impose on them if they did encrypt those channels.) So with regard to cable networks, in this scenario, generally the first tier of cable networks will be available, via QAM "in-the-clear".

Of course, everything is subject to variances within each local area.

I hope this helps.
Thank you for going into depth. I've quoted the answer to my question that was most useful. I'm hoping that once my cable company goes "all digital", my QAM tuner will save me money by not having to lease a set top box. Do you know if they have to provide QAM "in-the-clear" by law? Thanks so much for your help.
 

bicker

DTVUSA Member
#4
They do not have to provide QAM "in-the-clear". They only would have to do so:

- For local broadcast channels, only if the digital signal is the only signal they're providing.

- For cable channels, only if they choose to use DTAs (instead of CableCARD-equipped STBs).
 
Top