Digital converter box in the era of digital TV broadcasting
On Feb. 17, 2009, some analog channels in the U.S.A went dark — with a few exceptions, the rest did so on June 12 same year. Nearly all over-the-air analog TV transmission ceased in the U.S.A. Regular broadcasters in the States has completed the transition to digital television (DTV). The era of digital TV broadcasting has begun. The reason? Broadcasters moved their signals to another part of the radio spectrum. One reason for this transition was to free up space for police, fire & other public safety communications. Also, some of the spectrum has been auctioned to companies that will be able to provide consumers with advanced wireless services.
The switch from analog to digital broadcast television is known as the Digital Television Transition. In the United States, in 1996, Congress authorized the distribution of an extra broadcast channel to every full-power TV station so that each station could launch digital broadcasting while simultaneously continuing analog broadcasting. Later, Govt. set June 12, 2009 as the deadline for full power television stations to stop broadcasting analog signals.
All full-power TV stations have stopped broadcasting in analog & now broadcast only in digital format. If you are not receiving digital signals on your analog TV, you can buy a digital converter box from an electronics retailer.
Consumers who subscribe to pay television services (such as: cable, satellite) continue to receive broadcast television programs through subscription services. Users who do not have subscription TV services & are not receiving digital signals have two choices: viz.-(1) they can purchase a digital TV or (2) they can acquire a digital-to-analog converter box for each of their analog TVs to continue receiving free over-the-air digital broadcast. The converter box converts the over-the-air digital signals into signals that analog TV sets can receive & display.
Closed Captioning & the Digital Converter Box
‘Closed captioning’ displays the audio portion of a television program as text on the screen, enabling consumer with hearing loss & others to better access television programming. The digital converter box receives closed caption signals & passes those closed caption signals to your television automatically. Besides, many digital converter boxes generate captions through the converter itself, thus enabling you to change the way your captions look.
If you are having difficulty receiving digital broadcast stations, following tips guide you to receive digital signals.
Most existing antennas will provide good reception of DTV signals. Before making any changes, try your antenna first to see of it allows you to receive all the stations you normally watch.
To receive digital signals, you will need an antenna that provides good reception of both VHF signals & UHF signals to reliably receive all of the digital signals broadcast in your area.
Many antennas are designed only for reception of either VHF or UHF signals & not for both. For example, the commonly used Rabbit Ears indoor antenna is only suitable for receiving VHF signals. To receive UHF channel signals, an indoor antenna should also include additional feature for reception in that band.
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