Digital TV Conversion

We refuse to pay for cable television so our reception comes from a roof-mounted antenna.  Why the holdout?  Mostly it’s because we don’t watch that much television, and whenever I travel I’m amazed by how many channels are available in hotel rooms and how much time I waste channel surfing trying to find something worth watching.  I’ve also discovered that I can get through NetFlix much of what I might watch on cable or I can watch it on YouTube a day or so after it airs.  I applied for, and received, our two allotted coupons for converters at the beginning of the year.  At the time, I didn’t know they were only good for 90 days so we were forced to buy what was on the market at that time.   

I tried hooking the dang things up when I first bought them because I wanted to be reassured they would work.  Guess what?  They didn’t work.   I was frustrated because I found it very difficult to find out why they wouldn’t work.  I went to the Internet to see if I could find out more information – nothing.  I then called the store where I purchased the converter – again, nothing.  I went to the local Radio Shack and asked the guys working there – nothing.  I called the city government to see if they could tell me anything since calling Denver is long distance.  Again, nothing.  I finally made a long distance call to one of the Denver television stations, and finally found someone who could tell me that most of the local stations had not yet converted to the newly installed tower on Lookout Mountain, and even when they did, we probably wouldn’t be able to hook up our converter boxes until February 19th because the stations would be broadcasting on very low frequencies. 

We currently have two televisions.  One in the basement that gets used during the heat of summer.  It’s connected to the rooftop antenna through a combo VCR/DVD player with a built-in RF modulator.  The main floor television is connected through a newer VCR/DVD combo without a built-in modulator so we had to purchase one of those and hook it up through everything else. 

You can imagine the snarl of cables required to get basic television reception in our household.  And unfortunately the directions that come with the converter boxes do not provide instructions for hooking up the dang thing through a VCR/DVD player, let alone one that goes through a modulator. 

So I laughed when I saw this gem recently:

I’m sure I’ll be able to figure it out eventually but, considering there are 20 million others like me, you’d think the government could have done a better job implementing this program.  I predict a jump in digital tv sales the end of February.  Perhaps that is where I should invest some money!

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