Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Digital TV transition (update)

update: added antenna review below
You may be completely unaware, completely confused, or somewhere in between of the upcoming digital TV transition. There are lots of good resources out there so I will just hit some of the high points.

1. You are only affected if you currently receive your tv with an antenna.
2. If you use an antenna and haven't purchased a new tv in the last couple of years you will need a converter box.
3. Uncle Sam will give you $40 to spend on a converter box
4. You have to request a coupon(s) by the end of the month.

website for coupons https://www.dtv2009.gov/
more details http://reviews.cnet.com/dtv-transition/

Quick antenna review:
I just bought a new indoor antenna. The Terk HDTVa was my choice. I had been using a Phillips antenna. The Terk is better for several reasons. First, it allows me to pick up the same stations I did before, but now I don't have to adjust the antenna depending on which station I want to watch. Second, the main analog station (which will cease to exist after Feb. 17) that I watch comes in clearer. Third, I now can more reliably pick up the 4 PBS stations that only worked on occasion. The Phillips will now be moved to the bedroom so that Stefanie can watch the news or weather (when it storms) and should work just fine for that. (NBC has a very strong signal and should work well throughout the house) One other note. Both of these antennas are amplified (they must be plugged in) and I believe that this has made a big difference for me since the towers are up to 45 miles away. You can see what stations you should pick up by putting your address in at www.antennaweb.org. Best Buy carries the Terk antenna, but it is much cheaper on Amazon.com

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