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Old 11-24-2008, 11:10 AM
 
1,354 posts, read 3,570,037 times
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I hope this is the right forum to ask this....

I am so not in my comfort zone with this stuff... I see that my mother's coupon for the $40 off the DTV converter box expires TOMORROW so I need to make a fast decision on buying something, and maybe my best bet is online?

I did print out the Consumer Reports list (updated Nov. 08) but of course most brick and mortar stores don't stock the top-rated ones. I did see two on the list at Target but they were in the second-tier of ratings: a Venturer STB7766G and the GE22730 (coupon + $20.) Then I was reading reviews on the Best Buy forum and see stuff that I never even considered, such as a unit "runs very hot", though maybe that is normal?
e.g. this was said about the ApexDT250...

The CR chart is a tad confusing because all the top rated ones are not starred as having a universal remote control with the unit, but I thought ALL of these boxes come with a remote???

Anyway...I guess the question is: do the differences REALLY matter that much?? My mom and sister live in a senior housing complex and it seems they have cable, but a guy whose mom is there says the non-cable-paying people get it from an antenna, so I don't know. My sister already bought a converter (an RCA) and got this guy to hook it up but she says it doesn't work with the remote...I thought if you had a box it would work now (as opposed to waiting until next Feb??? Me so confused...)

But essential question is: I have to buy something by tomorrow, so any recommendations please? Either box model or standard retailer or best online source (there are DOZENS on the official gov list) appreciated!!!

Many thanks!
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Old 11-24-2008, 11:45 AM
 
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I have a TB100MW9 Magnavox from Walmart works fine.
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Old 11-24-2008, 12:44 PM
 
Location: Florida
557 posts, read 1,649,939 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catfancier View Post
My sister already bought a converter (an RCA) and got this guy to hook it up but she says it doesn't work with the remote...I thought if you had a box it would work now (as opposed to waiting until next Feb??? Me so confused...)
The digital box does work now because many stations are broadcasting both signals. With digital it is ALL OR NOTHING meaning the station will either not come in at all or it will be crystal clear. Your sister needs to move the antenna around and keep rescanning the channels everytime that she moves it. It is a real pain in the but if she can find a spot that gets MOST of the channels in, she'll be in good shape.

Setting Up Your Digital-to-Analog Converter Box (Basic)

The Digital TV Transition: FAQs - Consumer Corner

Quote:
Originally Posted by catfancier View Post
But essential question is: I have to buy something by tomorrow, so any recommendations please? Either box model or standard retailer or best online source (there are DOZENS on the official gov list) appreciated!!!

Many thanks!
I bought one at Walmart and it cost $10 after the coupon and it works fine. It came with a remote. My box runs very hot also, I think that's just normal.
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Old 11-24-2008, 12:46 PM
 
Location: Tyler, TX
15,210 posts, read 18,493,942 times
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Thanks for posting this thread! We got our coupons a while back and they've been just sitting on my desk. Seeing this thread reminded me of them, so I took them out and looked at them again - they expire on Thursday! I'll be heading to Wal*Mart today or tomorrow to pick a couple up.
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Old 11-24-2008, 02:32 PM
 
1,354 posts, read 3,570,037 times
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Thanks everyone, and glad I could help, swagger! Do it sooner than later, because one site I visited (dtvboxanswers.com I think it was) was going to take _72 hours_ to verify the coupon, and if there were some problem, at that point it would have expired and I would've been up the creek.

I decided to go with the Zenith DTT901 thru Circuit City; it had very good online reviews and the very nice customer service rep (in Virginia, who'd a thunk I'd have a native English speaker ) said he owned this unit himself. It comes with everything you might need, as I wanted to avoid having to run out for some stupid cable.

So if it all works out I have another coupon coming for another relative's TV and we'll do it again.

Lakeland Yankee, Thanks for the advice on playing with the antenna with the RCA box...when you say 'scan again' does that mean you have to do the whole remote setup again every time you touch the antenna???
(As you might guess, I am electronically challenged .)
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Old 11-24-2008, 06:50 PM
 
Location: Florida
557 posts, read 1,649,939 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catfancier View Post
Lakeland Yankee, Thanks for the advice on playing with the antenna with the RCA box...when you say 'scan again' does that mean you have to do the whole remote setup again every time you touch the antenna???
(As you might guess, I am electronically challenged .)
If the box is getting a strong channel signal then it should automaticly pick up the channels after an antenna move but sometimes re-scanning it pulls in a weaker channel that wasn't in before.... That's why I always re-scan after I move the antenna. The whole scan only takes about a minute so it's worth it IMHO. I hope this explains it better.
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