: ATSC Converter Boxes (Non-HD, Non-Recording)
2011-03-24, 10:23 PM
I used the STB-T8 for about a year. If memory serves correct, I was happy with that receiver and the remote. One minor annoyance was that the receiver would go to standby on it's own. This usually tended to happen if I was punching buttons on the remote rather quickly. I simply turned it back on and all was good again. That only happened about once a month.
What I noticed when I got an ATSC television was that the new set had better antenna sensitivity compared to the Tivax. Otherwise I was quite happy with the Tivax. It's now relegated to basement storage.
2011-03-25, 03:05 PM
That's good to know.
2011-03-26, 04:31 PM
I've used the TIVAX STB-T8 as well. I use to have it hooked up to the old VHS so that I could record ATSC signals in analog. The sensitivity of the tuner was a bit lower than my Sharp ATSC tuner. By about 15%. Overall no real complaints. At present I no longer use it since I purchased a Curtis VHS/DVD-R with a built in ATSC down convert box in it. Not that the Curtis is better. It's just that it requires one less item plugged into the wall. The TIVAX is sitting in a box not being used.
2011-03-26, 08:24 PM
Where did you buy the Curtis? - It brings back memories of Zellers. I'd thought about instead of a converter box, for my main TV, to go with a DVD/VCR or DVD recorder with a built-in ATSC tuner. I'd have to look around more, as Sears showed a couple Panasonics, but one was pricey. Their available Toshibas only had an NTSC tuner and their only set top box is the RCA DTA800B, not the B1. - And I want to be able to 'add' channels.
2011-04-05, 03:17 PM
What is a decent but yet low priced converter box (best bang for the $$$) these days?
2011-04-05, 03:28 PM
alank2, after all the comparisons here over the years and after many of the previous boxes have been sold out or taken out of production it really all boils down to what is available out there today in Canadian stores. Please use the following thread for where to buy one and what models are commonly available at what prices:
Where To Buy OTA Digital Converter Boxes In Canada (http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=127559)
We'll keep this existing thread focused on the technical details and issues with such boxes.
2011-04-12, 06:52 AM
Are there any converters that can do timers? Where you set a channel to go on and off at certain times?
2011-04-18, 01:40 PM
For those considering the CM7000 ,now would be a good time to acquire one as Channel Master has advised that this item will be discontinued due to components no longer available to manufacture for new . It's a good D/A unit , sorry to see it will no longer be manufactured.:(
2011-04-18, 04:48 PM
As disappointing as it sounds, it isn't surprising. Component obsolescence has become a major problem these days, especially for high value/low volume products where they need to manufacture the product for several years to recoup the design costs.
Peek demand for low cost DTV boxes has passed and no-one is going to want to come out with a new design as the sales volume isn't there.
2011-04-18, 08:22 PM
I'm a little surprised about that. New TVs will still come with ATSC tuners unless I'm wrong, so there has to be a demand for tuner components. Which component is becoming scarce?
2011-04-19, 03:32 AM
roger1818 is absolutely correct. By "component" he's referring to specific parts that fit specific design parameters. It's one thing to talk about Generation 6 ATSC chipsets and other compontents on a macro scale as a consumer, but when it comes to very detailed form factors in electronic products the differences can be showstoppers. If you open up a converter box and look at the board, think about what would happen if that manufacturer's suppliers informed them that due to the dwindling market for them one of those components was no longer available - if no drop-in replacement could be found from other suppliers it would more than likely mean that the board design would need to be redone to suit what is currently available. With the market dwindling, the economics suggest that there would not be much incentive to redesign the product. That's the state of things now with converter boxes.
2011-04-19, 09:26 PM
It's a good D/A unit , sorry to see it will no longer be manufactured.
It's a OK unit. The menus are terrible, sensitivity is good but also in other models.The Zenith ZTT901 is my all around favorite.
Anyways, all of these units weren't not made to last long.
2011-07-03, 10:56 PM
hi i'm new here , but i have bin watching ota for at least 10 years , i recently bought a rca dt 800 converter box and also decided to buy a chanell master 7000 , i;m using the chanell master 7000 so far and have bin able to get 13 channels. I find that the us chanells come in at night and by day they are gone.
i'M an ol man [war vet] and i used to play around with anntenas all the time for radios , but not as much with tv, i also bought amped antenna with rabbitt ears which helps a bit , i also bought an amp and tried it without any success, I was wondering how good/bad is the channell master 7000, what is their track record and what is the best converter, i live in toronto.
2011-07-04, 04:56 PM
Hi memphis 77 and welcome!
The Channel Master 7000 is one of the highest rated boxes currently available.
To improve your reception, I would recommend getting a better antenna. In general I don't recommend amplified indoor antennas as the amps tend to be of poor quality and tend to not necessary with short, unsplit cables as the tuner has a good first stage amp inside it.
2011-07-04, 10:00 PM
many thanks for your he;p and info , can you recommend one that is good/reliable , also will i have to set the antenna in another spot in a week or two or do these dtv antennas hold on to the signals longer? Sorry to ask so many questions. I'm thinking of getting a new tv flat screen RCA but what should i be looking for so that i don't need to use the converter box with it? I hope you can help me you have a gtreat an informative site.
2011-07-05, 01:49 AM
I just purchased one of these boxes to try out , but it doesn't seem to work. When I turned it on it doesnt show any thing on the screen, and yes its hooked up properly. The light on the front is red and stays red, is it supposed to be green? I'm almost thinking its stuck in standby mode or something. Any one got any ideas?
2011-07-06, 03:42 PM
that happened to me to so i unplugged it and plugged it in again and pressed power on from the unit and green light came on hope this helps.
from the moment you turn on the machine count to ten slowly to give the machine a chance to boot up.
Make sure you're on the right channel 3 or 4.
If you see nothing, using your remote control press "menu" and then peform the scan function.
It may take several minutes to scan, but after that, it should work.
2011-07-07, 01:41 AM
Thanks to all for your advice. It turns out that the box must have been defective. I returned it to the store and got another one. This one works fine. Was easy to scan and the picture is great. Sure beats that snowy analog picture, that i was used to before. The only thing I'm noticing is the sound seems to be crackling sometimes is there a certain level the volume on the tv should be at? seems as though the volume on the box has to be up fairly high to get enough volume. Could this be the reason for the sound crackling?
I have that same crackling sound. It's only on some channels. I have decided to live with it. It's only a matter of time before I can get a $150 LCD replacment TV for that old small CRT. If your box is at full volume and it's still not loud enough, turn up the main volume on your TV. You should be able to get it as loud as you need it.
My machine does not have the same brand written on it but I have looked at the machines in Best Buy (like the one you have) and it appears to be the same unit. Mine is a Microgem 2000.
If you're still not happy with the unit, maybe consider checking out the small LCD TVs with ATSC tuner's built-in. It's not a huge price jump for a small TV from the cost of those converter boxes anymore.
Your box has pros and cons. The pros are that you can filter out channels you don't want to watch. Also you can get a fair amount of programming information for each channel for several hours ahead. Another good thing is that you can do an add-on scan without having to risk losing the channels you have already locked-on to.
The cons are the crackling sound and the tuner is somewhat less powerful than other tuner's I have (ie I'll lose weaker stations on this one before I lose a signal using a different tuner).
You may be able to figure out how to solve the crackling sound. And you may not have an issue with weak signals. So all-in-all you might have found the right box for you.