Questions about FCC & HDTV
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Welly Wu

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My family is considering switching from Comcast basic analogue cable tv service to Dish Network service along with Comcast High Speed Internet to Earthlink DSL. However, I have a bunch of questions:

When will the FCC finally decide to shut off the current analogue TV spectrum and do the switch over to HDTV digital transmissions?

How will that effect both our current Comcast service when the FCC makes its decision? Doesn't that mean our old analogue TVs need to be upgraded to HDTV ready TVs such as LCD, Plasma, DLP, etc?

How does the basic Dish network package fit into all of this? In other words, will current and future subscribers need to upgrade to the VOOM HDTV programming package (or some other HDTV programming company in the likely even that VOOM ceases to exist) along with buying those expensive HDTV ready TVs as well?

We are confused as all heck on this one. Answers along with web resources will be greatly appreciated.
 
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bundee1

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Check AVSforum.com. I saw an article about the FCC and HDTV. The date was supposed to be next year. Basically the date right now is up in the air because of converter boxes.
 
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perplex

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in USA you already have a few HDTV channels right? in UK nothing has even started yet at all, i think people here are guessing 2010 for HTV here :/

i've never witnessed HDTV in real life :/
 
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I find it hard to believe they will actually stop all non-HDTV (analog) broadcasts entirely. It just seem that there are far too many people unwilling and/or unable to foot the bill for a HDTV, not to mention those who really are not THAT much into TV viewing as to even desire HDTV.
In addition, why then are they still selling new TV's that are analog-only, if possibly as soon as next year they will be obsolete and unuasble?
It just seems to me that this will cause quite a number of people to be left with NO TV at all . . . which is counter to the needs of the ADVERTISERS, who, after all pay the bill for the production and broadcast. I cannot imagine them accepting the loss of so many potential customers who will no longer be able to view their ads / commercials.
So, I am of the opinion that between all those left without and the advertisers there will be enough demand to continue broadcasting in both formats.
Who knows?
 
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bundee1

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Well one of the options would be a set top convertor box that would enable everyone to watch the HDTV broadcasts in standard definition. The question is will the government subsidize it to make it affordable for senior citizens and very poor people. Maybe <$50. No politician wants AARP on their *****.
"We want Maaaaaaatlock!"- Abe Simpson.
 
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VicAjax

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the analog spectrum WILL eventually be returned to the government... the question is just a matter of timing. the current deadline set by congress (i think something in the ballpark of october 2006) will more than likely be pushed back, as conflicting technology/myopic business interests/bumbling government have all but assured.

this only concerns over-the-air (OTA) signals... so cable subscribers wouldn't notice any change whatsoever... except that their provider would probably switch over to a 100% digital delivery system. this is a good thing. standard definition digital is a 480p (progressive) signal, which is better quality than SD analog, 480i (interlaced) resolution. and just because delivery is digital, doesn't mean it's high-def. a normal TV can receive and display digital SD, just not HD.

people without cable or satellite (about 15% of the population, i believe), who receive their programming only OTA, would be the ones who are screwed. there are a number of possible solutions to this, including providing them with free/cheap converter boxes. this would probably cost 100s of millions of dollars, but hey... that's about how much our government gives the Fanjul family every year to subsidize their poor little sugar company.

also, there are reasonably priced CRT HD sets out there, and the prices continue to fall. you're not required to buy plasma, LCD, RP or what-have-you.

it will still take years to get the broadcasters to give up the analog OTA spectrum, but it will happen, and ultimately it's a good thing for everyone involved, including we, the people.
 
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bundee1

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I was just looking at BestBuy and saw an Advent 24" HDTV for $350.
 
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The last time I saw the ruling large broadcasters must start simulataneously broadcasting analog and HDTV digital by 2007. In 2009 the FCC has declared that all analog television broadcasting will end - forever. After that point the bandwidth previously declared for analog will be redistributed to the new digital realm.
 
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rickcr42

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Quote:

How will that effect both our current Comcast service when the FCC makes its decision? Doesn't that mean our old analogue TVs need to be upgraded to HDTV ready TVs such as LCD, Plasma, DLP, etc?


a simple set-top adapter will make reception of HDTV possible but because of the aspect ration of the picture you will not be happy with anything less than a 32 inch screen size.This HD revolution is not just poutdating the analog TV but the traditional screen size as well.
a recent purchase of a 37 inch set came with a screen aspect ratio setting so even though not HD compatible the aspect ration is ready and i will only need to add the set top box adapter.
Those buying new widescreens will have kinda a "reverse letterbox" thing where instead of the balck bands on the top and the bottom for letterbox they will instead have left and right black to play "pre HD" TV shows.

isn't progress great in how it makes everything obsolete so you gotta buy more stuff,expensive stuff,just to be cool ?
 
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Edwood

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I've already gone all digital HDTV.

I need an external antenna installed on the roof of my condo, though. Windy days and planes in the sky cause interference where I live.


-Ed
 
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zotjen

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Quote:

In other words, will current and future subscribers need to upgrade to the VOOM HDTV programming package (or some other HDTV programming company in the likely even that VOOM ceases to exist)


VOOM already ceases to exist. It was an offshoot of Cablevision and failed miserably. And although everything will be going all digital at some point, it does not mean everything will be broadcast in HDTV. While HDTV is digital, digital does not necessarily mean HDTV. I believe Dish Network already broadcasts all their channels in digital but they're certainly not all HDTV.
 
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rickcr42

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Quote:

I need an external antenna installed on the roof of my condo, though. Windy days and planes in the sky cause interference where I live.


sounds like it is time to move to a "no fly zone"
 
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Edwood

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Quote:

Originally Posted by rickcr42
sounds like it is time to move to a "no fly zone"



Yeah, the federal government frowns on me imposing my own with a stinger launcher.


Oh, well. But apparently the FCC allows me to erect the most outrageous antenna to get reception, regardless of what my HOA may think.

-Ed
 
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bundee1

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Aww dude, Ed you just got us flagged.
 
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Edwood

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Crap, our taxes will be going up, because after the Feds browse this site, they will "have to have" new aquisitions of headphones for the office.


-Ed
 
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