Turn off analog TV? It’ll never happen

I know that everyone who loves HD is salivating at the prospect that analog TV will be turned off in two years. Here, look at Engadget HD for evidence.

The problem is that anyone who believes this will actually happen is smoking crack.

Here’s why: there are way too many people who still own analog TVs. My dad is one of them. He’s using a TV that I bought him back when I worked at LZ Premiums back in the 1980s. He’d like to get a new HD TV, but he comes from a generation that doesn’t throw things away just because a better one comes along. Not to mention that his house isn’t setup for a big screen. Oh, and older people vote, and vote more often than younger people. He also has a lot more resources than my generation does — resources that can go into getting heard.

But, you try taking away analog TV from people like my dad and you watch the political uproar.

Here’s the fun thing about living in a democracy: the majority group usually gets heard.

In this case I think it’s sheer idiocy to plan on analog TV getting turned off. It’ll never happen. Not in the next 10 years. Sorry.

Comments

  1. Your Dad use rabbit ears or does he have cable/sat? This only applies to over the air broadcasts, the kind you get with rabbit ears.

    Gov’t will provide converter/tuners for those who still want to use rabbit ears on their 10 years NTSC set.

    Analog will go away.

  2. Your Dad use rabbit ears or does he have cable/sat? This only applies to over the air broadcasts, the kind you get with rabbit ears.

    Gov’t will provide converter/tuners for those who still want to use rabbit ears on their 10 years NTSC set.

    Analog will go away.

  3. Your Dad use rabbit ears or does he have cable/sat? This only applies to over the air broadcasts, the kind you get with rabbit ears.

    Gov’t will provide converter/tuners for those who still want to use rabbit ears on their 10 years NTSC set.

    Analog will go away.

  4. I believe he has cable. But I know lots of people who use over-the-air. Generally these are people who are struggling to get by too. Yeah, I can see it now: turning off poor people’s main source of entertainment. That sure sounds politically smart.

    But, if this happens, sounds great. As an HDTV owner, the sooner everything goes digital and HDTV the better. I just am a realist.

  5. I believe he has cable. But I know lots of people who use over-the-air. Generally these are people who are struggling to get by too. Yeah, I can see it now: turning off poor people’s main source of entertainment. That sure sounds politically smart.

    But, if this happens, sounds great. As an HDTV owner, the sooner everything goes digital and HDTV the better. I just am a realist.

  6. I believe he has cable. But I know lots of people who use over-the-air. Generally these are people who are struggling to get by too. Yeah, I can see it now: turning off poor people’s main source of entertainment. That sure sounds politically smart.

    But, if this happens, sounds great. As an HDTV owner, the sooner everything goes digital and HDTV the better. I just am a realist.

  7. I’ve been meaning to blog this exact same sentiment. Some people have gotten the idea that spending $2000 on a big screen HDTV is a perfectly normal thing to do. For the majority of the population, it is not.

    It agree it will happen, but the 2009 deadline is ludicrous.

  8. I’ve been meaning to blog this exact same sentiment. Some people have gotten the idea that spending $2000 on a big screen HDTV is a perfectly normal thing to do. For the majority of the population, it is not.

    It agree it will happen, but the 2009 deadline is ludicrous.

  9. I’ve been meaning to blog this exact same sentiment. Some people have gotten the idea that spending $2000 on a big screen HDTV is a perfectly normal thing to do. For the majority of the population, it is not.

    It agree it will happen, but the 2009 deadline is ludicrous.

  10. Are ATSC STBs not cheaply available? That’s certainly the route to digital in the UK – no need to change your telly, and you get an extra 25-odd channels.

    Mind, our free-to-air DTV is still at PAL resolutions (576i), so a HDTV does not offer quite as much benefit…

  11. Are ATSC STBs not cheaply available? That’s certainly the route to digital in the UK – no need to change your telly, and you get an extra 25-odd channels.

    Mind, our free-to-air DTV is still at PAL resolutions (576i), so a HDTV does not offer quite as much benefit…

  12. Are ATSC STBs not cheaply available? That’s certainly the route to digital in the UK – no need to change your telly, and you get an extra 25-odd channels.

    Mind, our free-to-air DTV is still at PAL resolutions (576i), so a HDTV does not offer quite as much benefit…

  13. You’re conflating digital with HD.

    You can switch over to digital broadcast without going 100% HD

    The UK is in the process of doing just that.

    http://www.digitaltelevision.gov.uk/

    Announced in 2005 to be complete between 2008 and 2012 at at the latest (less than 10 years, but more than 2).

    It’s all done with cheap set top boxes, so your analogue TV continues to work.

    The aim of the game is to reclaim a big portion of the broadcast spectrum. Not force a HD migration.

  14. You’re conflating digital with HD.

    You can switch over to digital broadcast without going 100% HD

    The UK is in the process of doing just that.

    http://www.digitaltelevision.gov.uk/

    Announced in 2005 to be complete between 2008 and 2012 at at the latest (less than 10 years, but more than 2).

    It’s all done with cheap set top boxes, so your analogue TV continues to work.

    The aim of the game is to reclaim a big portion of the broadcast spectrum. Not force a HD migration.

  15. You’re conflating digital with HD.

    You can switch over to digital broadcast without going 100% HD

    The UK is in the process of doing just that.

    http://www.digitaltelevision.gov.uk/

    Announced in 2005 to be complete between 2008 and 2012 at at the latest (less than 10 years, but more than 2).

    It’s all done with cheap set top boxes, so your analogue TV continues to work.

    The aim of the game is to reclaim a big portion of the broadcast spectrum. Not force a HD migration.

  16. I agree with Robert on this one. In fact, I had this discussion twice in as many days this week. In each case, people bought a new analog set (one for under the cupboard in the kitchen). Now, why would a manufacturer even be allowed to sell such a set in the U.S. without A) providing a disclaimer that the set will not be operable in a year or B) the manufacturer is certain that the government will extend the deadline. It just opens up too many possible lawsuits (selling equipment that you know will not be functional in a year? C’mon).

    What is likely to happen is that we’ll have a long transition phase. There will be studies and eventually there will be no reason to serve the analog signals, but that isn’t going to be soon…unless the price on the HDTVs comes down quickly. Even so, it will take a while for the analog sets to reach the point where the constituency is so small as to be politically negligible.

    I own a Sony Triniton that is 8 years old. I don’t have cable and I don’t have an antenna. It’s used solely for watching DVDs. I’m not likely to replace it until I have to and Blu-Ray or HDTV discs are more likely to demand that before the government regulates it out of existence.

  17. I agree with Robert on this one. In fact, I had this discussion twice in as many days this week. In each case, people bought a new analog set (one for under the cupboard in the kitchen). Now, why would a manufacturer even be allowed to sell such a set in the U.S. without A) providing a disclaimer that the set will not be operable in a year or B) the manufacturer is certain that the government will extend the deadline. It just opens up too many possible lawsuits (selling equipment that you know will not be functional in a year? C’mon).

    What is likely to happen is that we’ll have a long transition phase. There will be studies and eventually there will be no reason to serve the analog signals, but that isn’t going to be soon…unless the price on the HDTVs comes down quickly. Even so, it will take a while for the analog sets to reach the point where the constituency is so small as to be politically negligible.

    I own a Sony Triniton that is 8 years old. I don’t have cable and I don’t have an antenna. It’s used solely for watching DVDs. I’m not likely to replace it until I have to and Blu-Ray or HDTV discs are more likely to demand that before the government regulates it out of existence.

  18. I agree. They will not be dropping analog for a long time. I don’t own a HD TV and I can’t afford one. We have 3 perfectly good TVs and I have no intention of replacing them any time soon.

  19. I agree. They will not be dropping analog for a long time. I don’t own a HD TV and I can’t afford one. We have 3 perfectly good TVs and I have no intention of replacing them any time soon.

  20. I agree. They will not be dropping analog for a long time. I don’t own a HD TV and I can’t afford one. We have 3 perfectly good TVs and I have no intention of replacing them any time soon.

  21. I agree with Robert on this one. In fact, I had this discussion twice in as many days this week. In each case, people bought a new analog set (one for under the cupboard in the kitchen). Now, why would a manufacturer even be allowed to sell such a set in the U.S. without A) providing a disclaimer that the set will not be operable in a year or B) the manufacturer is certain that the government will extend the deadline. It just opens up too many possible lawsuits (selling equipment that you know will not be functional in a year? C’mon).

    What is likely to happen is that we’ll have a long transition phase. There will be studies and eventually there will be no reason to serve the analog signals, but that isn’t going to be soon…unless the price on the HDTVs comes down quickly. Even so, it will take a while for the analog sets to reach the point where the constituency is so small as to be politically negligible.

    I own a Sony Triniton that is 8 years old. I don’t have cable and I don’t have an antenna. It’s used solely for watching DVDs. I’m not likely to replace it until I have to and Blu-Ray or HDTV discs are more likely to demand that before the government regulates it out of existence.

  22. In Sweden and I think in most parts of the EU the analog network has or is on the way to be shutdown. But this might be because we, in Sweden, have a state controlled TV broadcasting network whereas I assume you have privately held broadcasters.

  23. In Sweden and I think in most parts of the EU the analog network has or is on the way to be shutdown. But this might be because we, in Sweden, have a state controlled TV broadcasting network whereas I assume you have privately held broadcasters.

  24. In Sweden and I think in most parts of the EU the analog network has or is on the way to be shutdown. But this might be because we, in Sweden, have a state controlled TV broadcasting network whereas I assume you have privately held broadcasters.

  25. It may not happen on schedule (and the deadline has already been pushed back at least once), but it *will* happen for one very good reason: the Feds control the spectrum, and they have plans for the analog bandwidth (namely, turning it over to emergency responders to avoid some of the complications that hampered rescue efforts on That Day).

    Trust me, all the govt need do is shout “national security!” and people will gladly fork over $200 for a digital-to-analog conversion box.

  26. It may not happen on schedule (and the deadline has already been pushed back at least once), but it *will* happen for one very good reason: the Feds control the spectrum, and they have plans for the analog bandwidth (namely, turning it over to emergency responders to avoid some of the complications that hampered rescue efforts on That Day).

    Trust me, all the govt need do is shout “national security!” and people will gladly fork over $200 for a digital-to-analog conversion box.

  27. It may not happen on schedule (and the deadline has already been pushed back at least once), but it *will* happen for one very good reason: the Feds control the spectrum, and they have plans for the analog bandwidth (namely, turning it over to emergency responders to avoid some of the complications that hampered rescue efforts on That Day).

    Trust me, all the govt need do is shout “national security!” and people will gladly fork over $200 for a digital-to-analog conversion box.

  28. >So, in less than a year,
    >the price fell that much

    And they will continue to fall. In fact, I expect this to be the year when a reasonable 42″ HDTV set hits that magic price point of $1000 (they’re already available, but only in the 2nd tier brands).

    But you know what? $1000 is still a hell of a lot to pay for a TV. People making $40K and under aren’t going to spend it – and that’s a LOT of people. In the distortion field of the tech world, I think people tend to forget that.

  29. >So, in less than a year,
    >the price fell that much

    And they will continue to fall. In fact, I expect this to be the year when a reasonable 42″ HDTV set hits that magic price point of $1000 (they’re already available, but only in the 2nd tier brands).

    But you know what? $1000 is still a hell of a lot to pay for a TV. People making $40K and under aren’t going to spend it – and that’s a LOT of people. In the distortion field of the tech world, I think people tend to forget that.

  30. >So, in less than a year,
    >the price fell that much

    And they will continue to fall. In fact, I expect this to be the year when a reasonable 42″ HDTV set hits that magic price point of $1000 (they’re already available, but only in the 2nd tier brands).

    But you know what? $1000 is still a hell of a lot to pay for a TV. People making $40K and under aren’t going to spend it – and that’s a LOT of people. In the distortion field of the tech world, I think people tend to forget that.

  31. Via: http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/consumerfacts/digitaltv.html

    Conversion by Feb 17, 2009 ?

    Receiving DTV signals over the air requires an antenna and a receiver that can decode the digital signals. In general, an antenna that provides quality reception of over-the-air analog TV signals (VHF and UHF) will work for DTV reception.

    Converting to DTV also will free up parts of the scarce and valuable broadcast spectrum. Those portions of the spectrum can then be used for other important services, such as public and safety services (police and fire departments, emergency rescue), and advanced wireless services.
    Cable subscribers may need new DTV equipment to view DTV programming in digital format. You should ask your cable provider what you will need and when.

    Cable subscribers may buy a “Digital Cable Ready” (DCR) or “Plug-and-Play” television that plugs directly into the cable jack and does not require a separate set-top box. In order to receive scrambled programming and premium one-way services, cable subscribers with a DCR TV will need to obtain a CableCARD from their cable company.

    Alternatively, cable subscribers may lease a separate set-top box from their cable provider or buy one at a retail outlet.

    Satellite subscribers may need new DTV equipment to receive and view high definition digital programming. You should ask your satellite company what you will need and when.

  32. Via: http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/consumerfacts/digitaltv.html

    Conversion by Feb 17, 2009 ?

    Receiving DTV signals over the air requires an antenna and a receiver that can decode the digital signals. In general, an antenna that provides quality reception of over-the-air analog TV signals (VHF and UHF) will work for DTV reception.

    Converting to DTV also will free up parts of the scarce and valuable broadcast spectrum. Those portions of the spectrum can then be used for other important services, such as public and safety services (police and fire departments, emergency rescue), and advanced wireless services.
    Cable subscribers may need new DTV equipment to view DTV programming in digital format. You should ask your cable provider what you will need and when.

    Cable subscribers may buy a “Digital Cable Ready” (DCR) or “Plug-and-Play” television that plugs directly into the cable jack and does not require a separate set-top box. In order to receive scrambled programming and premium one-way services, cable subscribers with a DCR TV will need to obtain a CableCARD from their cable company.

    Alternatively, cable subscribers may lease a separate set-top box from their cable provider or buy one at a retail outlet.

    Satellite subscribers may need new DTV equipment to receive and view high definition digital programming. You should ask your satellite company what you will need and when.

  33. Via: http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/consumerfacts/digitaltv.html

    Conversion by Feb 17, 2009 ?

    Receiving DTV signals over the air requires an antenna and a receiver that can decode the digital signals. In general, an antenna that provides quality reception of over-the-air analog TV signals (VHF and UHF) will work for DTV reception.

    Converting to DTV also will free up parts of the scarce and valuable broadcast spectrum. Those portions of the spectrum can then be used for other important services, such as public and safety services (police and fire departments, emergency rescue), and advanced wireless services.
    Cable subscribers may need new DTV equipment to view DTV programming in digital format. You should ask your cable provider what you will need and when.

    Cable subscribers may buy a “Digital Cable Ready” (DCR) or “Plug-and-Play” television that plugs directly into the cable jack and does not require a separate set-top box. In order to receive scrambled programming and premium one-way services, cable subscribers with a DCR TV will need to obtain a CableCARD from their cable company.

    Alternatively, cable subscribers may lease a separate set-top box from their cable provider or buy one at a retail outlet.

    Satellite subscribers may need new DTV equipment to receive and view high definition digital programming. You should ask your satellite company what you will need and when.

  34. Robert, your post confuses digital television transmissions with HDTV (though you can relax in the knowledge that you are far from being the first to muddy the digital television waters). They are not one and the same, though it is possible to have HDTV programming with digital television.

    All of the rubbish about HDTV’s and their cost has absolutely nothing to do with digital television. As has been noted, the introduction of digital television transmissions over the air and eventual phasing out of analog television over the air does not make existing televisions obsolete.

    What I would like to see is more attention given to the manufacturers attempting to fleece consumers by setting the price of televisions that have a digital receiver built in at a cost higher than those with analog receivers – there is no justification for this at all.

  35. Robert, your post confuses digital television transmissions with HDTV (though you can relax in the knowledge that you are far from being the first to muddy the digital television waters). They are not one and the same, though it is possible to have HDTV programming with digital television.

    All of the rubbish about HDTV’s and their cost has absolutely nothing to do with digital television. As has been noted, the introduction of digital television transmissions over the air and eventual phasing out of analog television over the air does not make existing televisions obsolete.

    What I would like to see is more attention given to the manufacturers attempting to fleece consumers by setting the price of televisions that have a digital receiver built in at a cost higher than those with analog receivers – there is no justification for this at all.

  36. Robert, your post confuses digital television transmissions with HDTV (though you can relax in the knowledge that you are far from being the first to muddy the digital television waters). They are not one and the same, though it is possible to have HDTV programming with digital television.

    All of the rubbish about HDTV’s and their cost has absolutely nothing to do with digital television. As has been noted, the introduction of digital television transmissions over the air and eventual phasing out of analog television over the air does not make existing televisions obsolete.

    What I would like to see is more attention given to the manufacturers attempting to fleece consumers by setting the price of televisions that have a digital receiver built in at a cost higher than those with analog receivers – there is no justification for this at all.

  37. The real question is: will cable providers bridge the gap between a “cable-ready” analog TV on analog cable service and a local broadcast station that only offers DTV stations (HD or SD)? I’m sure they’d love to get all their customers over to an addressable converter per TV set whether or not it’s HD-capable. I think they’ll use the DTV mandate to cease analog cable service before the end of its useful life, to squeeze even more (SD) digital stations in their spectrum and to get more PPV-capable customers.

  38. The real question is: will cable providers bridge the gap between a “cable-ready” analog TV on analog cable service and a local broadcast station that only offers DTV stations (HD or SD)? I’m sure they’d love to get all their customers over to an addressable converter per TV set whether or not it’s HD-capable. I think they’ll use the DTV mandate to cease analog cable service before the end of its useful life, to squeeze even more (SD) digital stations in their spectrum and to get more PPV-capable customers.

  39. The real question is: will cable providers bridge the gap between a “cable-ready” analog TV on analog cable service and a local broadcast station that only offers DTV stations (HD or SD)? I’m sure they’d love to get all their customers over to an addressable converter per TV set whether or not it’s HD-capable. I think they’ll use the DTV mandate to cease analog cable service before the end of its useful life, to squeeze even more (SD) digital stations in their spectrum and to get more PPV-capable customers.

  40. Analog WILL go away. The government’s thirst for income will exceed any complaints by old farts and Luddites that don’t want to “upgrade” their TV viewing experience. The other reason it will go away is because of the investment by current broadcasters that have already purchased, installed and operating Digital TV systems. Some top ten markets have been running DTV for almost 5 years. I have no doubt they are looking forward to eliminating the expense of running 2 transmitters, and the maintenance expense. And, as we have seen in the past NAB(national association of broadcasters) has the power to move Congress to their will. As an example, it was the NAB that forced Dish Network, Direct TV, and cable systems to carry local channels. And, consequently, why your satellite picture is over compressed and the number of HDTV channels are limited due to the wasted bandwidth needs of 1000 local channels carried by the satellite broadcasters alone.

    So, there will be very cheap, if not free, methods to translate the DTV signal to analog devices.

  41. Analog WILL go away. The government’s thirst for income will exceed any complaints by old farts and Luddites that don’t want to “upgrade” their TV viewing experience. The other reason it will go away is because of the investment by current broadcasters that have already purchased, installed and operating Digital TV systems. Some top ten markets have been running DTV for almost 5 years. I have no doubt they are looking forward to eliminating the expense of running 2 transmitters, and the maintenance expense. And, as we have seen in the past NAB(national association of broadcasters) has the power to move Congress to their will. As an example, it was the NAB that forced Dish Network, Direct TV, and cable systems to carry local channels. And, consequently, why your satellite picture is over compressed and the number of HDTV channels are limited due to the wasted bandwidth needs of 1000 local channels carried by the satellite broadcasters alone.

    So, there will be very cheap, if not free, methods to translate the DTV signal to analog devices.

  42. Analog WILL go away. The government’s thirst for income will exceed any complaints by old farts and Luddites that don’t want to “upgrade” their TV viewing experience. The other reason it will go away is because of the investment by current broadcasters that have already purchased, installed and operating Digital TV systems. Some top ten markets have been running DTV for almost 5 years. I have no doubt they are looking forward to eliminating the expense of running 2 transmitters, and the maintenance expense. And, as we have seen in the past NAB(national association of broadcasters) has the power to move Congress to their will. As an example, it was the NAB that forced Dish Network, Direct TV, and cable systems to carry local channels. And, consequently, why your satellite picture is over compressed and the number of HDTV channels are limited due to the wasted bandwidth needs of 1000 local channels carried by the satellite broadcasters alone.

    So, there will be very cheap, if not free, methods to translate the DTV signal to analog devices.

  43. Analog Television will be with us for years; but Over-The-Air analog transmission will end – Congress wants the revenue from the sale of spectrum. It appears as if the Democrats are just as greedy as the Republicans. As people have already pointed out, the analog TV sets will continue to work with VHS, Beta, Gaming Consoles, Satellite, Cable and even WebTV.

    Only those folks who watch television over the air will be in the dark, and if they are in financial need, they may be eligible for a discount coupon to buy a set top converter box.

    This probably will result in the nation networks finally going direct to the customer via satellite and cable – making the local television station fight for their revalence.

  44. Analog Television will be with us for years; but Over-The-Air analog transmission will end – Congress wants the revenue from the sale of spectrum. It appears as if the Democrats are just as greedy as the Republicans. As people have already pointed out, the analog TV sets will continue to work with VHS, Beta, Gaming Consoles, Satellite, Cable and even WebTV.

    Only those folks who watch television over the air will be in the dark, and if they are in financial need, they may be eligible for a discount coupon to buy a set top converter box.

    This probably will result in the nation networks finally going direct to the customer via satellite and cable – making the local television station fight for their revalence.

  45. Analog Television will be with us for years; but Over-The-Air analog transmission will end – Congress wants the revenue from the sale of spectrum. It appears as if the Democrats are just as greedy as the Republicans. As people have already pointed out, the analog TV sets will continue to work with VHS, Beta, Gaming Consoles, Satellite, Cable and even WebTV.

    Only those folks who watch television over the air will be in the dark, and if they are in financial need, they may be eligible for a discount coupon to buy a set top converter box.

    This probably will result in the nation networks finally going direct to the customer via satellite and cable – making the local television station fight for their revalence.

  46. I think it will happen but it may take 2 or 3 years longer than expected. Even the older generation expects things to change. The introduction of the ATM is an example. I think the move to HD will be quite painless for people using an old TV. There will be millions of them so the converter box will be dirt cheap right off the hop. I expect it will be around the cost of a few DVD movies…

  47. I think it will happen but it may take 2 or 3 years longer than expected. Even the older generation expects things to change. The introduction of the ATM is an example. I think the move to HD will be quite painless for people using an old TV. There will be millions of them so the converter box will be dirt cheap right off the hop. I expect it will be around the cost of a few DVD movies…

  48. I think it will happen but it may take 2 or 3 years longer than expected. Even the older generation expects things to change. The introduction of the ATM is an example. I think the move to HD will be quite painless for people using an old TV. There will be millions of them so the converter box will be dirt cheap right off the hop. I expect it will be around the cost of a few DVD movies…

  49. Robert. Its not a “generation that doesn’t throw things away.”
    ‘Not throwing things away’ is what most of us will come to understand at a later point in our lifetime.

    Steve.

  50. Robert. Its not a “generation that doesn’t throw things away.”
    ‘Not throwing things away’ is what most of us will come to understand at a later point in our lifetime.

    Steve.

  51. Robert. Its not a “generation that doesn’t throw things away.”
    ‘Not throwing things away’ is what most of us will come to understand at a later point in our lifetime.

    Steve.

  52. Sweden has already switched. Why wouldn’t the US be able to? And yes, we actually have actually old people here too. And yesm we actually have democracy too. But we still switched.

  53. Sweden has already switched. Why wouldn’t the US be able to? And yes, we actually have actually old people here too. And yesm we actually have democracy too. But we still switched.

  54. Sweden has already switched. Why wouldn’t the US be able to? And yes, we actually have actually old people here too. And yesm we actually have democracy too. But we still switched.

  55. @6: By some people you can mean Scoble. Just because he bought a TV on credit he expects everybody to do the same. Credit is not normal for most people and shouldn’t be encouraged.

    @28: The circumstances may be the same but there are more people you have to get to convert. The UK is taking a few years but the US have got 5 times as many people who they have to get to change over. They can’t just switch it off.

  56. @6: By some people you can mean Scoble. Just because he bought a TV on credit he expects everybody to do the same. Credit is not normal for most people and shouldn’t be encouraged.

    @28: The circumstances may be the same but there are more people you have to get to convert. The UK is taking a few years but the US have got 5 times as many people who they have to get to change over. They can’t just switch it off.

  57. @6: By some people you can mean Scoble. Just because he bought a TV on credit he expects everybody to do the same. Credit is not normal for most people and shouldn’t be encouraged.

    @28: The circumstances may be the same but there are more people you have to get to convert. The UK is taking a few years but the US have got 5 times as many people who they have to get to change over. They can’t just switch it off.

  58. Here’s the problem with saying “the majority group usually gets heard”:

    In the U.S., cable/satellite penetration is already at 88% — so you’re talking about a change that would primarily affect just 12% of U.S. households — if it happened TODAY!

    Yes, you also have analog cable customers without set-top boxes, but the cable companies are chomping at the bit to get them VOD service and free up more bandwidth for HD channels, so they’ll be encouraging the cutoff.

    There’s way too much money at stake from selling the analog bandwidth for it be derailed by 12% of the population. That 12% is generally lower income, and in our current political system, money talks. They don’t stand a chance of moving the cutoff date.

    The remaining 12% will be able to get a converter box for not much money (though I’m curious how the voucher system will work and how much the converters will sell for), and the government will make billions auctioning off the old analog space.

  59. Here’s the problem with saying “the majority group usually gets heard”:

    In the U.S., cable/satellite penetration is already at 88% — so you’re talking about a change that would primarily affect just 12% of U.S. households — if it happened TODAY!

    Yes, you also have analog cable customers without set-top boxes, but the cable companies are chomping at the bit to get them VOD service and free up more bandwidth for HD channels, so they’ll be encouraging the cutoff.

    There’s way too much money at stake from selling the analog bandwidth for it be derailed by 12% of the population. That 12% is generally lower income, and in our current political system, money talks. They don’t stand a chance of moving the cutoff date.

    The remaining 12% will be able to get a converter box for not much money (though I’m curious how the voucher system will work and how much the converters will sell for), and the government will make billions auctioning off the old analog space.

  60. Here’s the problem with saying “the majority group usually gets heard”:

    In the U.S., cable/satellite penetration is already at 88% — so you’re talking about a change that would primarily affect just 12% of U.S. households — if it happened TODAY!

    Yes, you also have analog cable customers without set-top boxes, but the cable companies are chomping at the bit to get them VOD service and free up more bandwidth for HD channels, so they’ll be encouraging the cutoff.

    There’s way too much money at stake from selling the analog bandwidth for it be derailed by 12% of the population. That 12% is generally lower income, and in our current political system, money talks. They don’t stand a chance of moving the cutoff date.

    The remaining 12% will be able to get a converter box for not much money (though I’m curious how the voucher system will work and how much the converters will sell for), and the government will make billions auctioning off the old analog space.

  61. As mentioned by others, you are minimizing or forgeting a couple things…

    1. The FCC is being beat on to free up bandwidth. The companies that want the bandwidth have a great deal of pull.

    2. Digital set top boxes with analog outputs be less than $30.

    Jorgie

  62. As mentioned by others, you are minimizing or forgeting a couple things…

    1. The FCC is being beat on to free up bandwidth. The companies that want the bandwidth have a great deal of pull.

    2. Digital set top boxes with analog outputs be less than $30.

    Jorgie

  63. As mentioned by others, you are minimizing or forgeting a couple things…

    1. The FCC is being beat on to free up bandwidth. The companies that want the bandwidth have a great deal of pull.

    2. Digital set top boxes with analog outputs be less than $30.

    Jorgie

  64. “Here’s the fun thing about living in a democracy: the majority group usually gets heard.”

    No, we live in a republic, which is a representitive govt. As such, it’s the minority that gets heard and protected, often at the expense of what the majority wants. Think the “majority” want socialized medicine? Nope. But our representitives think we need it and will work to ensure it happens. Think the majority want “gay marriage” laws across the board? Nope. But our representatives will work to make that happen.

    But, none of that has to do with the move to digital television. The move is being driven purely by money. And that motivation trumps all else.

  65. “Here’s the fun thing about living in a democracy: the majority group usually gets heard.”

    No, we live in a republic, which is a representitive govt. As such, it’s the minority that gets heard and protected, often at the expense of what the majority wants. Think the “majority” want socialized medicine? Nope. But our representitives think we need it and will work to ensure it happens. Think the majority want “gay marriage” laws across the board? Nope. But our representatives will work to make that happen.

    But, none of that has to do with the move to digital television. The move is being driven purely by money. And that motivation trumps all else.

  66. “Here’s the fun thing about living in a democracy: the majority group usually gets heard.”

    No, we live in a republic, which is a representitive govt. As such, it’s the minority that gets heard and protected, often at the expense of what the majority wants. Think the “majority” want socialized medicine? Nope. But our representitives think we need it and will work to ensure it happens. Think the majority want “gay marriage” laws across the board? Nope. But our representatives will work to make that happen.

    But, none of that has to do with the move to digital television. The move is being driven purely by money. And that motivation trumps all else.

  67. In the Netherlands Analog has been switched off, without any fuss in the media or lots of people complaining. The only cost to people would be getting a digital receiver, though I have to admit most people in the Netherlands have cable tv.

  68. In the Netherlands Analog has been switched off, without any fuss in the media or lots of people complaining. The only cost to people would be getting a digital receiver, though I have to admit most people in the Netherlands have cable tv.

  69. In the Netherlands Analog has been switched off, without any fuss in the media or lots of people complaining. The only cost to people would be getting a digital receiver, though I have to admit most people in the Netherlands have cable tv.

  70. The day they turn off “analog” TV is the day I give up watching TV …

    I have often opined – as a person born in 1959 – that I “have watched the birth and death of TV in a single lifetime” …

    if MSM thinks that I am going to watch their garbage and pay for it – they have another think coming – they earn enough from advertising without milking me for yet another revenue stream ..

    I already boycott ANY products that are shown on commercial TV – now the next logical step is to boycott any form of PAY TV – and only watch the free channels …

    .. hey! it might not be current – but at least my brainwashing isn’t up-to-date either …

    .. if this continues I might even rediscover the “art of conversation” ™ ..

  71. The day they turn off “analog” TV is the day I give up watching TV …

    I have often opined – as a person born in 1959 – that I “have watched the birth and death of TV in a single lifetime” …

    if MSM thinks that I am going to watch their garbage and pay for it – they have another think coming – they earn enough from advertising without milking me for yet another revenue stream ..

    I already boycott ANY products that are shown on commercial TV – now the next logical step is to boycott any form of PAY TV – and only watch the free channels …

    .. hey! it might not be current – but at least my brainwashing isn’t up-to-date either …

    .. if this continues I might even rediscover the “art of conversation” ™ ..

  72. The day they turn off “analog” TV is the day I give up watching TV …

    I have often opined – as a person born in 1959 – that I “have watched the birth and death of TV in a single lifetime” …

    if MSM thinks that I am going to watch their garbage and pay for it – they have another think coming – they earn enough from advertising without milking me for yet another revenue stream ..

    I already boycott ANY products that are shown on commercial TV – now the next logical step is to boycott any form of PAY TV – and only watch the free channels …

    .. hey! it might not be current – but at least my brainwashing isn’t up-to-date either …

    .. if this continues I might even rediscover the “art of conversation” ™ ..

  73. I forgot to mention HDTV means: “You get to watch the same shit” – but on a bigger screen with a “higher resolution” ..

    gimme a break … like I need an HDTV screen to watch hollywood garbage at a “higher resolution” ..

    .. with the average hollywood output these days – the smaller the screen the better ..

  74. I forgot to mention HDTV means: “You get to watch the same shit” – but on a bigger screen with a “higher resolution” ..

    gimme a break … like I need an HDTV screen to watch hollywood garbage at a “higher resolution” ..

    .. with the average hollywood output these days – the smaller the screen the better ..

  75. I forgot to mention HDTV means: “You get to watch the same shit” – but on a bigger screen with a “higher resolution” ..

    gimme a break … like I need an HDTV screen to watch hollywood garbage at a “higher resolution” ..

    .. with the average hollywood output these days – the smaller the screen the better ..

  76. Robert, I know that you know there is a world outside America. You’ve been there.

    So how come you ignore the fact that other countries are turning off Analog ? See posts above. In Europe (and Australia) we’re using DVB-T which goes over the same spectrum as analog, and adapter boxes are cheap (or built in to new TVs).

    Interesting that your next post after this one was about how Americans are fed a diet of trivia from home but don’t know what is happening in other countries.

  77. Robert, I know that you know there is a world outside America. You’ve been there.

    So how come you ignore the fact that other countries are turning off Analog ? See posts above. In Europe (and Australia) we’re using DVB-T which goes over the same spectrum as analog, and adapter boxes are cheap (or built in to new TVs).

    Interesting that your next post after this one was about how Americans are fed a diet of trivia from home but don’t know what is happening in other countries.

  78. Robert, I know that you know there is a world outside America. You’ve been there.

    So how come you ignore the fact that other countries are turning off Analog ? See posts above. In Europe (and Australia) we’re using DVB-T which goes over the same spectrum as analog, and adapter boxes are cheap (or built in to new TVs).

    Interesting that your next post after this one was about how Americans are fed a diet of trivia from home but don’t know what is happening in other countries.

  79. @37,

    I think that Robert is such in a dream of his HDTV, he forgets about the rest of the world, even though he physically travels out and about.

    Robert, I’m glad you like your HDTV. But… most people cannot afford what you blatently waste money on. No one NEEDS a huge TV and surround sound systems.

    One of the things I love about Europe and South America is being with real people. These people may or may not be able to afford over-priced TVs and sound systems, but watching a soccer game on a 22″ TV set with people like this is refreshing. I like being with the everyday man, not well-to-do geeks whose passion is overpriced junk that they could very well live without.

    Let me make a statement to everyone, and there is NO disputing this statement, try as you might.

    If you buy all your high-end fancy digital equipment and pay cash (read: not in debt), and all your essentials are paid for, then more power to you, BUT, if you buy all this glorious overpriced junk, AND go into debt for it (read: you still owe after the stuff is home), then you have issues.

    I learned a long time ago after years of being stupid when it came to money, that if you want something and can buy it with cash/ATM card, then do it, as long as you can afford the essentials. But if you have to charge items, you have issues with understanding money. Credit cards are the main reason the vast majority of Americans are in debt to lenders and not in control of their own finances.

    Take some good advice from me, even though you may disagree with some of what I have to say in here…

    Buy only what you can afford. Just becuase all of your blog hereoes and the whiz-bang gadget sites say you need something is no indication you do. We all suffer from geek lust, but having the maturity to handle it, like Robert’s dad is a mark of good financial control. You’ll thank yourselves later when you need money and don’t have to go into evil debt to pay something you actually need off.

  80. @37,

    I think that Robert is such in a dream of his HDTV, he forgets about the rest of the world, even though he physically travels out and about.

    Robert, I’m glad you like your HDTV. But… most people cannot afford what you blatently waste money on. No one NEEDS a huge TV and surround sound systems.

    One of the things I love about Europe and South America is being with real people. These people may or may not be able to afford over-priced TVs and sound systems, but watching a soccer game on a 22″ TV set with people like this is refreshing. I like being with the everyday man, not well-to-do geeks whose passion is overpriced junk that they could very well live without.

    Let me make a statement to everyone, and there is NO disputing this statement, try as you might.

    If you buy all your high-end fancy digital equipment and pay cash (read: not in debt), and all your essentials are paid for, then more power to you, BUT, if you buy all this glorious overpriced junk, AND go into debt for it (read: you still owe after the stuff is home), then you have issues.

    I learned a long time ago after years of being stupid when it came to money, that if you want something and can buy it with cash/ATM card, then do it, as long as you can afford the essentials. But if you have to charge items, you have issues with understanding money. Credit cards are the main reason the vast majority of Americans are in debt to lenders and not in control of their own finances.

    Take some good advice from me, even though you may disagree with some of what I have to say in here…

    Buy only what you can afford. Just becuase all of your blog hereoes and the whiz-bang gadget sites say you need something is no indication you do. We all suffer from geek lust, but having the maturity to handle it, like Robert’s dad is a mark of good financial control. You’ll thank yourselves later when you need money and don’t have to go into evil debt to pay something you actually need off.

  81. @37,

    I think that Robert is such in a dream of his HDTV, he forgets about the rest of the world, even though he physically travels out and about.

    Robert, I’m glad you like your HDTV. But… most people cannot afford what you blatently waste money on. No one NEEDS a huge TV and surround sound systems.

    One of the things I love about Europe and South America is being with real people. These people may or may not be able to afford over-priced TVs and sound systems, but watching a soccer game on a 22″ TV set with people like this is refreshing. I like being with the everyday man, not well-to-do geeks whose passion is overpriced junk that they could very well live without.

    Let me make a statement to everyone, and there is NO disputing this statement, try as you might.

    If you buy all your high-end fancy digital equipment and pay cash (read: not in debt), and all your essentials are paid for, then more power to you, BUT, if you buy all this glorious overpriced junk, AND go into debt for it (read: you still owe after the stuff is home), then you have issues.

    I learned a long time ago after years of being stupid when it came to money, that if you want something and can buy it with cash/ATM card, then do it, as long as you can afford the essentials. But if you have to charge items, you have issues with understanding money. Credit cards are the main reason the vast majority of Americans are in debt to lenders and not in control of their own finances.

    Take some good advice from me, even though you may disagree with some of what I have to say in here…

    Buy only what you can afford. Just becuase all of your blog hereoes and the whiz-bang gadget sites say you need something is no indication you do. We all suffer from geek lust, but having the maturity to handle it, like Robert’s dad is a mark of good financial control. You’ll thank yourselves later when you need money and don’t have to go into evil debt to pay something you actually need off.

  82. Before I forget…

    Some of you will undoubtedly give me the lame argument that you pay off your credit card balances every month. So what?

    If you can afford to pay them off every month, pay for the item in cash/ATM card be done with it.

    I took Dave Ramsey’s advice and cut up my credit cards. I use cash and ATM card only for everything. Having or not having credit cards does not affect your credit rating. Your credit rating is tied to much more than mere credit cards. The most important method to achieving great credit is to never have balances. Pay your utilities every month and you help build great credit. Paying your rent or mortgage on time every month also helps with great credit.

    Go an read about credit debt ceilings. Most Americans don’t even have a clue what this even entails.

    In a nutshell…

    Let’s say you make $50,000 a year.
    Let’s also say you have $12,000 in mortgage/rent costs.
    Let’s say you have two credit cards, each with a $10,000 limit. Let’s assume for simplicity, you have no balance at the moment.
    Let’s assume you have a car payment of $400 a month.

    Ok, before even buying food, gas, utilities, and other essentials, you are already spending $1,400.00 a month.

    Credit agencies look at what’s called a credit debt ceiling, which is how much you COULD be in debt, not neccessarily how much you ARE in debt.

    With the example above, after applicable taxes, the person makes about $35,000 after taxes.

    Divide 35,000 into 26 paychecks, which yields around $1346 a paycheck or $2692 a month take home.

    After that $1,400 for home and car you’re left with $1292. You still need gas, groceries, health insurance, utilities to pay.

    Let’s say all that costs about $900 a month. You’re left with $392. What about your savings? What about your emergency fund?

    If you really want that big screen TV, save $50 a month until you have the money. There is no way someone making the above average American salary of 50k can reliably buy all the goodies they want and NOT go into debt.

    If you’re an overpaid geek, then the above may or may not apply to you. Remember, though, that if your mortgage exceeds more than 25% of your take home income, you went wrong somewhere.

    Just some things to think about…

  83. Before I forget…

    Some of you will undoubtedly give me the lame argument that you pay off your credit card balances every month. So what?

    If you can afford to pay them off every month, pay for the item in cash/ATM card be done with it.

    I took Dave Ramsey’s advice and cut up my credit cards. I use cash and ATM card only for everything. Having or not having credit cards does not affect your credit rating. Your credit rating is tied to much more than mere credit cards. The most important method to achieving great credit is to never have balances. Pay your utilities every month and you help build great credit. Paying your rent or mortgage on time every month also helps with great credit.

    Go an read about credit debt ceilings. Most Americans don’t even have a clue what this even entails.

    In a nutshell…

    Let’s say you make $50,000 a year.
    Let’s also say you have $12,000 in mortgage/rent costs.
    Let’s say you have two credit cards, each with a $10,000 limit. Let’s assume for simplicity, you have no balance at the moment.
    Let’s assume you have a car payment of $400 a month.

    Ok, before even buying food, gas, utilities, and other essentials, you are already spending $1,400.00 a month.

    Credit agencies look at what’s called a credit debt ceiling, which is how much you COULD be in debt, not neccessarily how much you ARE in debt.

    With the example above, after applicable taxes, the person makes about $35,000 after taxes.

    Divide 35,000 into 26 paychecks, which yields around $1346 a paycheck or $2692 a month take home.

    After that $1,400 for home and car you’re left with $1292. You still need gas, groceries, health insurance, utilities to pay.

    Let’s say all that costs about $900 a month. You’re left with $392. What about your savings? What about your emergency fund?

    If you really want that big screen TV, save $50 a month until you have the money. There is no way someone making the above average American salary of 50k can reliably buy all the goodies they want and NOT go into debt.

    If you’re an overpaid geek, then the above may or may not apply to you. Remember, though, that if your mortgage exceeds more than 25% of your take home income, you went wrong somewhere.

    Just some things to think about…

  84. Before I forget…

    Some of you will undoubtedly give me the lame argument that you pay off your credit card balances every month. So what?

    If you can afford to pay them off every month, pay for the item in cash/ATM card be done with it.

    I took Dave Ramsey’s advice and cut up my credit cards. I use cash and ATM card only for everything. Having or not having credit cards does not affect your credit rating. Your credit rating is tied to much more than mere credit cards. The most important method to achieving great credit is to never have balances. Pay your utilities every month and you help build great credit. Paying your rent or mortgage on time every month also helps with great credit.

    Go an read about credit debt ceilings. Most Americans don’t even have a clue what this even entails.

    In a nutshell…

    Let’s say you make $50,000 a year.
    Let’s also say you have $12,000 in mortgage/rent costs.
    Let’s say you have two credit cards, each with a $10,000 limit. Let’s assume for simplicity, you have no balance at the moment.
    Let’s assume you have a car payment of $400 a month.

    Ok, before even buying food, gas, utilities, and other essentials, you are already spending $1,400.00 a month.

    Credit agencies look at what’s called a credit debt ceiling, which is how much you COULD be in debt, not neccessarily how much you ARE in debt.

    With the example above, after applicable taxes, the person makes about $35,000 after taxes.

    Divide 35,000 into 26 paychecks, which yields around $1346 a paycheck or $2692 a month take home.

    After that $1,400 for home and car you’re left with $1292. You still need gas, groceries, health insurance, utilities to pay.

    Let’s say all that costs about $900 a month. You’re left with $392. What about your savings? What about your emergency fund?

    If you really want that big screen TV, save $50 a month until you have the money. There is no way someone making the above average American salary of 50k can reliably buy all the goodies they want and NOT go into debt.

    If you’re an overpaid geek, then the above may or may not apply to you. Remember, though, that if your mortgage exceeds more than 25% of your take home income, you went wrong somewhere.

    Just some things to think about…

  85. Peter: we already know you’re better than the rest of us. No need to rub it in our faces. I actually I agree with you for a totally different reason. My TV cost $3,800 10 months ago. Today it costs $2,600 (and, is actually a little better resolution). So, if you keep waiting it’ll get even cheaper.

  86. Peter: we already know you’re better than the rest of us. No need to rub it in our faces. I actually I agree with you for a totally different reason. My TV cost $3,800 10 months ago. Today it costs $2,600 (and, is actually a little better resolution). So, if you keep waiting it’ll get even cheaper.

  87. Peter: we already know you’re better than the rest of us. No need to rub it in our faces. I actually I agree with you for a totally different reason. My TV cost $3,800 10 months ago. Today it costs $2,600 (and, is actually a little better resolution). So, if you keep waiting it’ll get even cheaper.

  88. DRK: I don’t know about you, but on Friday night my son and I watched MY home HDTV movies made in Europe and the experience was a TON better than those videos would be in SD.

    I guess you never heard of the Discovery Channel.

    You’re also probably one of those bosses who buys 13-inch monitors for all his workers, right? After all, who needs dual monitors or big 30-inch Apple Cinema displays. Forget all the productivity that you would get from those.

  89. DRK: I don’t know about you, but on Friday night my son and I watched MY home HDTV movies made in Europe and the experience was a TON better than those videos would be in SD.

    I guess you never heard of the Discovery Channel.

    You’re also probably one of those bosses who buys 13-inch monitors for all his workers, right? After all, who needs dual monitors or big 30-inch Apple Cinema displays. Forget all the productivity that you would get from those.

  90. DRK: I don’t know about you, but on Friday night my son and I watched MY home HDTV movies made in Europe and the experience was a TON better than those videos would be in SD.

    I guess you never heard of the Discovery Channel.

    You’re also probably one of those bosses who buys 13-inch monitors for all his workers, right? After all, who needs dual monitors or big 30-inch Apple Cinema displays. Forget all the productivity that you would get from those.

  91. RScoble: I have no problem with anyone watching their own home movies on whatever they want – but I am not willing to watch Hollywood/MSM garbage on a HDTV that costs $$$$$s – life is too short – and the movies are just as crap whatever the size of the screen ..

    As for “my workers” – back in the day when I could be bothered to be an “IT Manager” I always believed that the best way forward for productivity was to give them what they wanted .. dual screens were the thing in those days .. and regular days off so they could see their families … (I could only guarantee the former though *lol*)

    Discovery Channel – I wish!! Here in Spain we only get Discovery if I go out and buy a “Digi-Box” rather than use my Analog TV – which was where the conversation started .. no?

    My point is that 99.99% of the output of MSM is complete and utter garbage anyhow – and if they switch off the analog system I’ll do something more useful with my life – like take up knitting, playing carrom, or even talking to people …

  92. RScoble: I have no problem with anyone watching their own home movies on whatever they want – but I am not willing to watch Hollywood/MSM garbage on a HDTV that costs $$$$$s – life is too short – and the movies are just as crap whatever the size of the screen ..

    As for “my workers” – back in the day when I could be bothered to be an “IT Manager” I always believed that the best way forward for productivity was to give them what they wanted .. dual screens were the thing in those days .. and regular days off so they could see their families … (I could only guarantee the former though *lol*)

    Discovery Channel – I wish!! Here in Spain we only get Discovery if I go out and buy a “Digi-Box” rather than use my Analog TV – which was where the conversation started .. no?

    My point is that 99.99% of the output of MSM is complete and utter garbage anyhow – and if they switch off the analog system I’ll do something more useful with my life – like take up knitting, playing carrom, or even talking to people …

  93. RScoble: I have no problem with anyone watching their own home movies on whatever they want – but I am not willing to watch Hollywood/MSM garbage on a HDTV that costs $$$$$s – life is too short – and the movies are just as crap whatever the size of the screen ..

    As for “my workers” – back in the day when I could be bothered to be an “IT Manager” I always believed that the best way forward for productivity was to give them what they wanted .. dual screens were the thing in those days .. and regular days off so they could see their families … (I could only guarantee the former though *lol*)

    Discovery Channel – I wish!! Here in Spain we only get Discovery if I go out and buy a “Digi-Box” rather than use my Analog TV – which was where the conversation started .. no?

    My point is that 99.99% of the output of MSM is complete and utter garbage anyhow – and if they switch off the analog system I’ll do something more useful with my life – like take up knitting, playing carrom, or even talking to people …

  94. DRK: never underestimate the American public’s willingness to consume crap. Which might explain why CNN and FOX spent so much time on Anna Nicole Smith’s death and why, at dinner last night (normal people, not geeks), were talking about Britney Spears and her bald head. Sigh.

    But, that actually brings up a good point. Yesterday Dave Winer, me, and Patrick went to see a movie. Total cost? About $40. I don’t see anyone here saying “families under $50,000 incomes can’t afford movies anymore).”

    You can buy a $1,000 TV for about $40 a month payments at Best Buy. I know if I was on a fixed income that I’d rather have a big-screen TV at home, than go to movies.

  95. DRK: never underestimate the American public’s willingness to consume crap. Which might explain why CNN and FOX spent so much time on Anna Nicole Smith’s death and why, at dinner last night (normal people, not geeks), were talking about Britney Spears and her bald head. Sigh.

    But, that actually brings up a good point. Yesterday Dave Winer, me, and Patrick went to see a movie. Total cost? About $40. I don’t see anyone here saying “families under $50,000 incomes can’t afford movies anymore).”

    You can buy a $1,000 TV for about $40 a month payments at Best Buy. I know if I was on a fixed income that I’d rather have a big-screen TV at home, than go to movies.

  96. DRK: never underestimate the American public’s willingness to consume crap. Which might explain why CNN and FOX spent so much time on Anna Nicole Smith’s death and why, at dinner last night (normal people, not geeks), were talking about Britney Spears and her bald head. Sigh.

    But, that actually brings up a good point. Yesterday Dave Winer, me, and Patrick went to see a movie. Total cost? About $40. I don’t see anyone here saying “families under $50,000 incomes can’t afford movies anymore).”

    You can buy a $1,000 TV for about $40 a month payments at Best Buy. I know if I was on a fixed income that I’d rather have a big-screen TV at home, than go to movies.

  97. I’m in rural Kentucky. I can get eight analog stations via antenna, of which five are watchable to crystal clear. Those five are all currently broadcast digital signals too – at their maximum allowed power – but I can recieve only one.

    Therein lies a big problem for rural customers whether those in the plains or those in the mountains. We require those signals for news and weather (for crops and farming or severe weather warnings).

    Cable is very expensive *if* we can even get it and one tree or pole down during a storm can take out weather broadcasts for a community for days. Since digital signals require far less power they were restricted to far less power, but hilly terrain and vast expanses weren’t fully accounted for so they don’t reach as many of us.

    Then there are the issues you discuss. We’ve got multiple tvs, some 15 years old. If we could buy one converter box and it could simultaneously serve all our analog tvs watching different channels at once we’d accept it, but that’s not the case. It’d be $100+ per tv. That’s not acceptible.

  98. I’m in rural Kentucky. I can get eight analog stations via antenna, of which five are watchable to crystal clear. Those five are all currently broadcast digital signals too – at their maximum allowed power – but I can recieve only one.

    Therein lies a big problem for rural customers whether those in the plains or those in the mountains. We require those signals for news and weather (for crops and farming or severe weather warnings).

    Cable is very expensive *if* we can even get it and one tree or pole down during a storm can take out weather broadcasts for a community for days. Since digital signals require far less power they were restricted to far less power, but hilly terrain and vast expanses weren’t fully accounted for so they don’t reach as many of us.

    Then there are the issues you discuss. We’ve got multiple tvs, some 15 years old. If we could buy one converter box and it could simultaneously serve all our analog tvs watching different channels at once we’d accept it, but that’s not the case. It’d be $100+ per tv. That’s not acceptible.

  99. I’m in rural Kentucky. I can get eight analog stations via antenna, of which five are watchable to crystal clear. Those five are all currently broadcast digital signals too – at their maximum allowed power – but I can recieve only one.

    Therein lies a big problem for rural customers whether those in the plains or those in the mountains. We require those signals for news and weather (for crops and farming or severe weather warnings).

    Cable is very expensive *if* we can even get it and one tree or pole down during a storm can take out weather broadcasts for a community for days. Since digital signals require far less power they were restricted to far less power, but hilly terrain and vast expanses weren’t fully accounted for so they don’t reach as many of us.

    Then there are the issues you discuss. We’ve got multiple tvs, some 15 years old. If we could buy one converter box and it could simultaneously serve all our analog tvs watching different channels at once we’d accept it, but that’s not the case. It’d be $100+ per tv. That’s not acceptible.

  100. @40,

    Scoble, I never said I was better than the rest of you. Quite the contrary. I make far less than most people on the blog. I drive a beater Japanese car, and I live in a small house.

    What I am is cautious, experienced, and savvy. I’ve been in the military, attended and graduated from college, made tons of mistakes, held 3 careers, and have learned a ton along the way, particularly about fincances.

    If I tell your readership about financial responisbility, then I’m trying to help becuase I’ve made the stupid mistakes.

    Scoble, your problem is you are too caught up in the news you sell to your readership. HDTV is NOT a panacea. Full stop.

    Poster #36 nailed it.

    Scoble, introducing God into a blog discussion is doing nothing wrong. If you think so, you have issues. That’s the problem with this country… we’ve become a nation of pagans, of tolerance, of anything goes…

    God matters. In the end, He’s all that matters. Not your TV or you cars, etc.

    No one is better than anyone else, Robert. I see things differently because while I’m a couple of years younger than you, I have worlds of experience over you. You’ve visited Europe. I lived there for almost 8 years. You’ve been to Asia. I lived there for almost 3 years. I’ve lived all over in the US. I’ve held 3 different careers. When I talk about debt, I know what I speak of. I used to be in debt, but I got wise and got out. What I offered above was sage advice. Debt is evil. Full stop. And there you went telling someone to go buy a TV from Best Buy on a $40 a month plan. Dude, you should be selling common sense on this blog instead of bunk like debt. Getting a TV should be a simple purchase of choose, buy, instantly own, not protracted debt of even $40 a month.

    I’m not better, Robert, just wiser.

  101. @40,

    Scoble, I never said I was better than the rest of you. Quite the contrary. I make far less than most people on the blog. I drive a beater Japanese car, and I live in a small house.

    What I am is cautious, experienced, and savvy. I’ve been in the military, attended and graduated from college, made tons of mistakes, held 3 careers, and have learned a ton along the way, particularly about fincances.

    If I tell your readership about financial responisbility, then I’m trying to help becuase I’ve made the stupid mistakes.

    Scoble, your problem is you are too caught up in the news you sell to your readership. HDTV is NOT a panacea. Full stop.

    Poster #36 nailed it.

    Scoble, introducing God into a blog discussion is doing nothing wrong. If you think so, you have issues. That’s the problem with this country… we’ve become a nation of pagans, of tolerance, of anything goes…

    God matters. In the end, He’s all that matters. Not your TV or you cars, etc.

    No one is better than anyone else, Robert. I see things differently because while I’m a couple of years younger than you, I have worlds of experience over you. You’ve visited Europe. I lived there for almost 8 years. You’ve been to Asia. I lived there for almost 3 years. I’ve lived all over in the US. I’ve held 3 different careers. When I talk about debt, I know what I speak of. I used to be in debt, but I got wise and got out. What I offered above was sage advice. Debt is evil. Full stop. And there you went telling someone to go buy a TV from Best Buy on a $40 a month plan. Dude, you should be selling common sense on this blog instead of bunk like debt. Getting a TV should be a simple purchase of choose, buy, instantly own, not protracted debt of even $40 a month.

    I’m not better, Robert, just wiser.

  102. @40,

    Scoble, I never said I was better than the rest of you. Quite the contrary. I make far less than most people on the blog. I drive a beater Japanese car, and I live in a small house.

    What I am is cautious, experienced, and savvy. I’ve been in the military, attended and graduated from college, made tons of mistakes, held 3 careers, and have learned a ton along the way, particularly about fincances.

    If I tell your readership about financial responisbility, then I’m trying to help becuase I’ve made the stupid mistakes.

    Scoble, your problem is you are too caught up in the news you sell to your readership. HDTV is NOT a panacea. Full stop.

    Poster #36 nailed it.

    Scoble, introducing God into a blog discussion is doing nothing wrong. If you think so, you have issues. That’s the problem with this country… we’ve become a nation of pagans, of tolerance, of anything goes…

    God matters. In the end, He’s all that matters. Not your TV or you cars, etc.

    No one is better than anyone else, Robert. I see things differently because while I’m a couple of years younger than you, I have worlds of experience over you. You’ve visited Europe. I lived there for almost 8 years. You’ve been to Asia. I lived there for almost 3 years. I’ve lived all over in the US. I’ve held 3 different careers. When I talk about debt, I know what I speak of. I used to be in debt, but I got wise and got out. What I offered above was sage advice. Debt is evil. Full stop. And there you went telling someone to go buy a TV from Best Buy on a $40 a month plan. Dude, you should be selling common sense on this blog instead of bunk like debt. Getting a TV should be a simple purchase of choose, buy, instantly own, not protracted debt of even $40 a month.

    I’m not better, Robert, just wiser.

  103. @45,
    You write:
    Debt is evil.

    I respectfully disagree. While most debt may be evil, some debt (education/house mortage come to mind) are not evil. In fact, just try to buy a place in San Francisco using cash. I bought my flat at age 26. Could you do that? I don’t think so. So, while I have some debt now, it’s against an asset that will appreciate over time. If you want to make such an all-encompassing statement regarding debt being evil, I don’t think your “authority” is worth its weight in sand.

  104. @45,
    You write:
    Debt is evil.

    I respectfully disagree. While most debt may be evil, some debt (education/house mortage come to mind) are not evil. In fact, just try to buy a place in San Francisco using cash. I bought my flat at age 26. Could you do that? I don’t think so. So, while I have some debt now, it’s against an asset that will appreciate over time. If you want to make such an all-encompassing statement regarding debt being evil, I don’t think your “authority” is worth its weight in sand.

  105. @45,
    You write:
    Debt is evil.

    I respectfully disagree. While most debt may be evil, some debt (education/house mortage come to mind) are not evil. In fact, just try to buy a place in San Francisco using cash. I bought my flat at age 26. Could you do that? I don’t think so. So, while I have some debt now, it’s against an asset that will appreciate over time. If you want to make such an all-encompassing statement regarding debt being evil, I don’t think your “authority” is worth its weight in sand.

  106. The switch will happen. First of all, Gareth Simpson is right. You all are mixing up HD with digital. One can still go buy a tube television for 200 dollars, with a digital tuner built in….right now! The digital tuners just aren’t in the smaller televisions. And also, the switch isn’t to HD….the switch is to digital broadcasting. Many people don’t know this, but with a simple set of rabbit ears, you can still pick up a high definition signal, as long as the TV has an ATSC (digital) tuner. So it isn’t like rabbit ears will be going out either. Of course it is smarter to have digital cable or sat. because you get much better reception. on top of all that, the government has already pushed this date back once, twice will probably not happen.

  107. The switch will happen. First of all, Gareth Simpson is right. You all are mixing up HD with digital. One can still go buy a tube television for 200 dollars, with a digital tuner built in….right now! The digital tuners just aren’t in the smaller televisions. And also, the switch isn’t to HD….the switch is to digital broadcasting. Many people don’t know this, but with a simple set of rabbit ears, you can still pick up a high definition signal, as long as the TV has an ATSC (digital) tuner. So it isn’t like rabbit ears will be going out either. Of course it is smarter to have digital cable or sat. because you get much better reception. on top of all that, the government has already pushed this date back once, twice will probably not happen.

  108. The switch will happen. First of all, Gareth Simpson is right. You all are mixing up HD with digital. One can still go buy a tube television for 200 dollars, with a digital tuner built in….right now! The digital tuners just aren’t in the smaller televisions. And also, the switch isn’t to HD….the switch is to digital broadcasting. Many people don’t know this, but with a simple set of rabbit ears, you can still pick up a high definition signal, as long as the TV has an ATSC (digital) tuner. So it isn’t like rabbit ears will be going out either. Of course it is smarter to have digital cable or sat. because you get much better reception. on top of all that, the government has already pushed this date back once, twice will probably not happen.

  109. “Of course it is smarter to have cable or satelite” how does having cable or satelite make you smarter? How smart is a society where having a high definition television is the goal to some people? Hi my name is joe idiot, can I please pay to watch commercials. I mean when cable and satelite were first out, there were no commercials, and that was the selling point. Now we have a discovery channel with reality shows, a weather channel that tells you it’s raining on a sunny day, a food network that says it’s ok to spend 50 dollars for lunch. WTF is going on? I guess my grandfather was right he used to tell me ” I’m not crazy, the world is crazy”

  110. “Of course it is smarter to have cable or satelite” how does having cable or satelite make you smarter? How smart is a society where having a high definition television is the goal to some people? Hi my name is joe idiot, can I please pay to watch commercials. I mean when cable and satelite were first out, there were no commercials, and that was the selling point. Now we have a discovery channel with reality shows, a weather channel that tells you it’s raining on a sunny day, a food network that says it’s ok to spend 50 dollars for lunch. WTF is going on? I guess my grandfather was right he used to tell me ” I’m not crazy, the world is crazy”

  111. “Of course it is smarter to have cable or satelite” how does having cable or satelite make you smarter? How smart is a society where having a high definition television is the goal to some people? Hi my name is joe idiot, can I please pay to watch commercials. I mean when cable and satelite were first out, there were no commercials, and that was the selling point. Now we have a discovery channel with reality shows, a weather channel that tells you it’s raining on a sunny day, a food network that says it’s ok to spend 50 dollars for lunch. WTF is going on? I guess my grandfather was right he used to tell me ” I’m not crazy, the world is crazy”

  112. It will happen. What is uncertain is how many people will freak out when suddenly all the channels are off the air at the same time. Will they think it was a terrorist attack?

  113. It will happen. What is uncertain is how many people will freak out when suddenly all the channels are off the air at the same time. Will they think it was a terrorist attack?

  114. I DETEST digital and the idea of “the switchover” makes me want to puke, I have a lovely old television from the sixties and it works like a charm, so I do not want to buy one these new televisions if I have a perfectly good one. My mother has a digital box and quite frankly its rubbish, you would be lucky to be able to watch a half hour programme before looking for a mallet to dstroy it. It has terrible interference and when (if) this switch over happens there would be no point watching the television. I will NEVER EVER do digital.

  115. I DETEST digital and the idea of “the switchover” makes me want to puke, I have a lovely old television from the sixties and it works like a charm, so I do not want to buy one these new televisions if I have a perfectly good one. My mother has a digital box and quite frankly its rubbish, you would be lucky to be able to watch a half hour programme before looking for a mallet to dstroy it. It has terrible interference and when (if) this switch over happens there would be no point watching the television. I will NEVER EVER do digital.

  116. Let’s get digital

    While there was television to be watched before that, TV as we know it arrived in 1941, with the adoption of the technological standards proposed by the National Television Standards Committee. And it departs in February 2009, superseded by purely-digi…

  117. Hi Robert,
    Analog TV will be shut down. Why should you keep an energy consuming, very limited to develop and bad picture quality technique running? In sweden the whole nation has switched to DTV during the past two years. It has went smoother than anyone expected, even politiceners. Most consumers LIKE DTV. Even old people. Even if they have to deal with a new remote and the cost of installing DTV. People want more channels / multicasting. And here in the US you will make space for more wireless developments. Not to forgett the “blue light” communications that can save lives. Look beyond the “roadbump” – to make people shift – and discover the improvements. But you as many others confuse the transition to DTV with HDTV. You can get HDTV OTA (over the air) Hey – that’s not possible in most European countries! wow.
    Let’s go DTV Now..

    Anders Bjers (your cubicle neighbour at podtech)
    Blog: dtvbrief.wordpress.com

  118. Hi Robert,
    Analog TV will be shut down. Why should you keep an energy consuming, very limited to develop and bad picture quality technique running? In sweden the whole nation has switched to DTV during the past two years. It has went smoother than anyone expected, even politiceners. Most consumers LIKE DTV. Even old people. Even if they have to deal with a new remote and the cost of installing DTV. People want more channels / multicasting. And here in the US you will make space for more wireless developments. Not to forgett the “blue light” communications that can save lives. Look beyond the “roadbump” – to make people shift – and discover the improvements. But you as many others confuse the transition to DTV with HDTV. You can get HDTV OTA (over the air) Hey – that’s not possible in most European countries! wow.
    Let’s go DTV Now..

    Anders Bjers (your cubicle neighbour at podtech)
    Blog: dtvbrief.wordpress.com

  119. Come on, get out of the 60′s…analog is over..it’s gonna happen. You can sit back with your old analog TV and enjoy snow or you can get off your butt and go out and get a digital set. This is a great opportuinity to dump cable and satellite. Most markets will be providing more choices so why do you need to be paying $80 plus for channels you don’t watch. Let’s teach cable and satellite a lesson.
    Come on, we own the airwaves so let’s use them..

  120. Come on, get out of the 60′s…analog is over..it’s gonna happen. You can sit back with your old analog TV and enjoy snow or you can get off your butt and go out and get a digital set. This is a great opportuinity to dump cable and satellite. Most markets will be providing more choices so why do you need to be paying $80 plus for channels you don’t watch. Let’s teach cable and satellite a lesson.
    Come on, we own the airwaves so let’s use them..

  121. If you’re out in the boonies, like I almost am, you may not get much digital coverage. For most stations that I know of, the digital signal is on a low-power test transmitter, just so the station can say they have one going. When the analog is shut off, they’ll move the digital signal to the frequency and most of the power of the analog signal (Grade B coverage on ATSC requires less power than NTSC) so basically if you’re getting the analog with at least ITU Grade 3 reception (some snow/ghosting) you’ll get a usable ATSC signal. That means a clear picture, no transmission artifacts (digital pictures get block errors in high noise environments) and roughly-CD-quality sound on standard-definition broadcasts. High-def broadcasts will give you wide-screen pictures and surround sound.

    To give an idea of the improvement, CableOne in Odessa, TX now uses the Fox station’s digital signal for its service on analog cable, and the improvement is massive. Before, we’d get a grade-3 to grade-4 signal; KPEJ’s analog transmitter is about 10 miles north of the head-end, and is rather old equipment, from what I gather. KPEJ’s digital signal originates from the station on the other side of town and prety much covers Odessa; the cable system converts it to NTSC analog, now giving us a grade-5 picture. The only problem is that KPEJ is on permanent 720p output (720 lines, progressive scan and 16:9 aspect) and upconverts their standard-definition programming that originates at the station; to compensate, the cable system now essentially squashes the picture horizontally, so the baseball players look rail-thin, and SD programming passed through from Fox (like 4KidsTV and “The Simpsons” are also squashed with black bars left and right. Despite all that, it’s a big improvement.

    Right now you can go to any nearby Wal-Mart and buy a bedroom-sized digital set for $150 or less. It won’t be a wide-screen high-def thing (it’s essentially your normal tube TV, but with an ATSC receiver), but it will produce a picture from a digital signal, and most also have QAM tuners for unencrypted digital cable if you have such available. I think converter boxes will start hitting the market this holiday season, though the NTIA coupons are not scheduled to be issued until January 1, 2008.

    Too bad it’s still not like in the UK where you can go to the local equivalent of Radio Shack and get a converter box for the equivalent of $60 or less.

  122. If you’re out in the boonies, like I almost am, you may not get much digital coverage. For most stations that I know of, the digital signal is on a low-power test transmitter, just so the station can say they have one going. When the analog is shut off, they’ll move the digital signal to the frequency and most of the power of the analog signal (Grade B coverage on ATSC requires less power than NTSC) so basically if you’re getting the analog with at least ITU Grade 3 reception (some snow/ghosting) you’ll get a usable ATSC signal. That means a clear picture, no transmission artifacts (digital pictures get block errors in high noise environments) and roughly-CD-quality sound on standard-definition broadcasts. High-def broadcasts will give you wide-screen pictures and surround sound.

    To give an idea of the improvement, CableOne in Odessa, TX now uses the Fox station’s digital signal for its service on analog cable, and the improvement is massive. Before, we’d get a grade-3 to grade-4 signal; KPEJ’s analog transmitter is about 10 miles north of the head-end, and is rather old equipment, from what I gather. KPEJ’s digital signal originates from the station on the other side of town and prety much covers Odessa; the cable system converts it to NTSC analog, now giving us a grade-5 picture. The only problem is that KPEJ is on permanent 720p output (720 lines, progressive scan and 16:9 aspect) and upconverts their standard-definition programming that originates at the station; to compensate, the cable system now essentially squashes the picture horizontally, so the baseball players look rail-thin, and SD programming passed through from Fox (like 4KidsTV and “The Simpsons” are also squashed with black bars left and right. Despite all that, it’s a big improvement.

    Right now you can go to any nearby Wal-Mart and buy a bedroom-sized digital set for $150 or less. It won’t be a wide-screen high-def thing (it’s essentially your normal tube TV, but with an ATSC receiver), but it will produce a picture from a digital signal, and most also have QAM tuners for unencrypted digital cable if you have such available. I think converter boxes will start hitting the market this holiday season, though the NTIA coupons are not scheduled to be issued until January 1, 2008.

    Too bad it’s still not like in the UK where you can go to the local equivalent of Radio Shack and get a converter box for the equivalent of $60 or less.

  123. Converter boxes will be available on Jan 1, 2008, at about $50. With a $40 coupon, that means the net cost is $10.

    The gov’t wants the spectrum for emergency use (read: their bit to respond to 9/11 paranoia), plus the remainder of the spectrum will be autioned off, and that means billions of $$ for the federal budget.

    Analog will go away on Feb 17, 2009, and nothing will stop it. You can bet on it.

  124. Converter boxes will be available on Jan 1, 2008, at about $50. With a $40 coupon, that means the net cost is $10.

    The gov’t wants the spectrum for emergency use (read: their bit to respond to 9/11 paranoia), plus the remainder of the spectrum will be autioned off, and that means billions of $$ for the federal budget.

    Analog will go away on Feb 17, 2009, and nothing will stop it. You can bet on it.

  125. Converter boxes will be available on Jan 1, 2008, at about $50. With a $40 coupon, that means the net cost is $10.

    The gov’t wants the spectrum for emergency use (read: their bit to respond to 9/11 paranoia), plus the remainder of the spectrum will be autioned off, and that means billions of $$ for the federal budget.

    Analog will go away on Feb 17, 2009, and nothing will stop it. You can bet on it.

  126. well after sopranos screwed us on the finale and hope the end of the series lost gets done i wont have a reason to turn on tv. im in a small town so if you dont have cable or satellite you can only get 1 channel with static with an external antenna. ill never change and though i have satellite radio thats up for grabs,with the merge of serius and xm i guess its time to use my brain and read more books.

  127. well after sopranos screwed us on the finale and hope the end of the series lost gets done i wont have a reason to turn on tv. im in a small town so if you dont have cable or satellite you can only get 1 channel with static with an external antenna. ill never change and though i have satellite radio thats up for grabs,with the merge of serius and xm i guess its time to use my brain and read more books.

  128. well after sopranos screwed us on the finale and hope the end of the series lost gets done i wont have a reason to turn on tv. im in a small town so if you dont have cable or satellite you can only get 1 channel with static with an external antenna. ill never change and though i have satellite radio thats up for grabs,with the merge of serius and xm i guess its time to use my brain and read more books.

  129. Well. Funny that there’s not much mention of quality. Or the government intentionally ‘turning off’ independent broadcasting routes to fulfill their own agenda. The same argument came up on The Reg (theregister.co.uk) the other day. There are a few overwhelming issues here that the layman might miss:

    1) Digital broadcasting can NEVER contend with analog quality. Physical fact. Ask any audiophile what his/her opinion on this matter his and you’ll be fetching your coat.

    2) The government, major comms companies and every other money and power-diffusing network wants to sell you this new technology and will do everything within their (enormous) power to make you believe that you need it.

    3) The annihilation of independent broadcasting.

    Politics aside, give CRT over HD, give me Bitmap over Jpeg, give me AIF over MP3. Oh, and give me 4:3 and not some ridiculously letter-boxed image using 1/3 screen real-estate. Has the world gone mad? That’s rhetorical. I know it has.

    Compress and cut corners all you like. I want good ol’ fashion quality not ‘perceived improvement in quality’.

    @Zap – yes, we do own the airwaves. Sick, and rather sad really isn’t it.

  130. Well. Funny that there’s not much mention of quality. Or the government intentionally ‘turning off’ independent broadcasting routes to fulfill their own agenda. The same argument came up on The Reg (theregister.co.uk) the other day. There are a few overwhelming issues here that the layman might miss:

    1) Digital broadcasting can NEVER contend with analog quality. Physical fact. Ask any audiophile what his/her opinion on this matter his and you’ll be fetching your coat.

    2) The government, major comms companies and every other money and power-diffusing network wants to sell you this new technology and will do everything within their (enormous) power to make you believe that you need it.

    3) The annihilation of independent broadcasting.

    Politics aside, give CRT over HD, give me Bitmap over Jpeg, give me AIF over MP3. Oh, and give me 4:3 and not some ridiculously letter-boxed image using 1/3 screen real-estate. Has the world gone mad? That’s rhetorical. I know it has.

    Compress and cut corners all you like. I want good ol’ fashion quality not ‘perceived improvement in quality’.

    @Zap – yes, we do own the airwaves. Sick, and rather sad really isn’t it.

  131. This sure is a sad thing to hear

    that direct tv will be gone

    so ppl that have just rabbit ears

    there tv wont work, and the ppl

    with older tv’s wont work. does the

    goverment not care about the workin

    poor ppl.

  132. This sure is a sad thing to hear

    that direct tv will be gone

    so ppl that have just rabbit ears

    there tv wont work, and the ppl

    with older tv’s wont work. does the

    goverment not care about the workin

    poor ppl.

  133. You must be smoking crack. Perhaps you haven’t heard of the analog/digital converter box? That’s the alternative to people who do not wish to run out and get a new TV. In fact, the government is offering a $40 voucher toward these converter boxes. Before you go on saying people are smoking crack for living in reality, you should do a little research.

  134. You must be smoking crack. Perhaps you haven’t heard of the analog/digital converter box? That’s the alternative to people who do not wish to run out and get a new TV. In fact, the government is offering a $40 voucher toward these converter boxes. Before you go on saying people are smoking crack for living in reality, you should do a little research.

  135. Another thing that is to be taken into concideration is that on the vhf analog channels…. there are a few people out there that have privately purchased their own transmitters and “Have there own network technically” so what then. Transmitting on a VHF frequency is somethig that alot of people including myself know how to do. I use to have a set of rabbit ears and could hear a cordless phone conversation on the right channel and tuned with the tuning knob I had no problem hearing the conversation. I’m sure that on top of the frequencys being used for “Emergency Services” that they will have privacy codes. Still though there are only so many privacy codes you use on lower frequencys like that of VHF. In short the purposes of freeing up these frequencys is far fetched due to the popularity and availibility of products u can either rig up yourself or straight up buy for instance off Ebay and create your own transmission wich in turn would interupt broadcasting for an “emergency frequency” and before I get a so what on the cordless phone thing. I know its a short distance broadcast and wouldnt affect it. However there are plenty of things out there that would affect these frequencys from anywhere 10-100 miles no problem. So what about that. Can the FCC really regulate devices interfearing with frequencys when their origional specifications passed FCC standards?

  136. Another thing that is to be taken into concideration is that on the vhf analog channels…. there are a few people out there that have privately purchased their own transmitters and “Have there own network technically” so what then. Transmitting on a VHF frequency is somethig that alot of people including myself know how to do. I use to have a set of rabbit ears and could hear a cordless phone conversation on the right channel and tuned with the tuning knob I had no problem hearing the conversation. I’m sure that on top of the frequencys being used for “Emergency Services” that they will have privacy codes. Still though there are only so many privacy codes you use on lower frequencys like that of VHF. In short the purposes of freeing up these frequencys is far fetched due to the popularity and availibility of products u can either rig up yourself or straight up buy for instance off Ebay and create your own transmission wich in turn would interupt broadcasting for an “emergency frequency” and before I get a so what on the cordless phone thing. I know its a short distance broadcast and wouldnt affect it. However there are plenty of things out there that would affect these frequencys from anywhere 10-100 miles no problem. So what about that. Can the FCC really regulate devices interfearing with frequencys when their origional specifications passed FCC standards?

  137. When you consider the amount of $$$ spent on advertising in the TV market, it is really hard to believe that that the advertisers would allow such a conversion to take place when so many of us still have analog sets that we use. Yes, I have a digital TV in livingroom and Bedroom. But that’s not really where I watch TV and I know for a fact that my neighbors do the same as I. My TV is in my workshop out back. My neighbors is in his garage. And that’s where we hangout. Most other men can relate I am sure. We have to maintain that bufferzone between us and the wife. BTW.. if the FCC says that the digital convergance is necessary because of interferance with other transmitters (ie cordeless phones, remote controls etc.) then that is truly a bunch of bunk. My career is in electronics and I am a licensed HAM operator. Yes, interferance can be a problem if the two frequencies are on the same band or are close together. Also, that interferance has to do with rated output of the transmitter.. and the type of receiver…. which with a cordless phone or a remote control just isn’t going to happen. The FCC has mandated requirements for these items so that couldn’t even be a viable issue. Also, The UHF & VHF signals that come from the TV stations are much stronger and they ocililate different because it is an audio & video signal. These items just do not compare. I cannot think of one viable reason for rushing into this. Unless of course that they aren’t telling us the whole and complete story.

  138. When you consider the amount of $$$ spent on advertising in the TV market, it is really hard to believe that that the advertisers would allow such a conversion to take place when so many of us still have analog sets that we use. Yes, I have a digital TV in livingroom and Bedroom. But that’s not really where I watch TV and I know for a fact that my neighbors do the same as I. My TV is in my workshop out back. My neighbors is in his garage. And that’s where we hangout. Most other men can relate I am sure. We have to maintain that bufferzone between us and the wife. BTW.. if the FCC says that the digital convergance is necessary because of interferance with other transmitters (ie cordeless phones, remote controls etc.) then that is truly a bunch of bunk. My career is in electronics and I am a licensed HAM operator. Yes, interferance can be a problem if the two frequencies are on the same band or are close together. Also, that interferance has to do with rated output of the transmitter.. and the type of receiver…. which with a cordless phone or a remote control just isn’t going to happen. The FCC has mandated requirements for these items so that couldn’t even be a viable issue. Also, The UHF & VHF signals that come from the TV stations are much stronger and they ocililate different because it is an audio & video signal. These items just do not compare. I cannot think of one viable reason for rushing into this. Unless of course that they aren’t telling us the whole and complete story.

  139. Has anyone pointed out to you yet that you’re mixing up your ideas about digital signal? HD means high definition. It does NOT mean digital, rather it refers to resolution. So you don’t have to buy a new HDTV, you only have to buy a TV that translates a digital signal. Or get the cheap converter that you’ve already been informed of.

    PLUS, television sets don’t last forever. And if it hasn’t already, analog sets won’t be made anymore. Remember when it happened with cell phones? That wasn’t so bad…

  140. Has anyone pointed out to you yet that you’re mixing up your ideas about digital signal? HD means high definition. It does NOT mean digital, rather it refers to resolution. So you don’t have to buy a new HDTV, you only have to buy a TV that translates a digital signal. Or get the cheap converter that you’ve already been informed of.

    PLUS, television sets don’t last forever. And if it hasn’t already, analog sets won’t be made anymore. Remember when it happened with cell phones? That wasn’t so bad…

  141. Funny i remember the exact same thing being said about the anolog mobile phone network and it was turned off leaving us the digital one only and there where heaps of people with the old mobile phone at the time

  142. Funny i remember the exact same thing being said about the anolog mobile phone network and it was turned off leaving us the digital one only and there where heaps of people with the old mobile phone at the time

  143. To those of you in denial, the analog goes out in Feb of next year in the U.S. Period. It only effects antenna/OTA, not cable or sat. reception. Regardless of how old, how much they vote or anything else, this IS going to happen in Feb of next year. Get over it, get used to it and just go get a converter or go without TV, your choice.

  144. To those of you in denial, the analog goes out in Feb of next year in the U.S. Period. It only effects antenna/OTA, not cable or sat. reception. Regardless of how old, how much they vote or anything else, this IS going to happen in Feb of next year. Get over it, get used to it and just go get a converter or go without TV, your choice.

  145. To those of you in denial, the analog goes out in Feb of next year in the U.S. Period. It only effects antenna/OTA, not cable or sat. reception. Regardless of how old, how much they vote or anything else, this IS going to happen in Feb of next year. Get over it, get used to it and just go get a converter or go without TV, your choice.

  146. I’ve been holding out hoping they would extend the deadline. We’re in the middle of a serious recession. I know people that can’t even afford enough food to last a month, and are selling their posessions on eBay to pay utility bills and for gasoline. It seems to me that this is the worst time the government could require this. I have 7 analog TV sets. Only one of them even has a coax connector. The rest have 2 screws for the 300 ohm flat lead. I ordered my coupons for converter boxes 2 months ago. I haven’t received anything. It looks like we don’t have any choice. They keep running the propaganda about DTV on local channels several times a day. The senior citizens are really confused about this. I used to repair TV’s back in the 1980′s and still get 3 to 4 calls a month from people that have an old TV in each room and don’t know what to do. I’ve also heard that if you’re in the inner city with a lot of tall buildings around, or in a fringe area out in the country, you may lose your signal altogether, even with the converter box. I read on a tech site that DTV will cut in and out like a cell phone does when it breaks up if you live in these areas. They estimated that as many as 11 million people nationwide will lose their signal. DTV will not go through tall buildings and will not go as far as analog TV does. This is going to be a real problem. The advertisers should be lobbying to extend analog TV at least another 5 years.

  147. I’ve been holding out hoping they would extend the deadline. We’re in the middle of a serious recession. I know people that can’t even afford enough food to last a month, and are selling their posessions on eBay to pay utility bills and for gasoline. It seems to me that this is the worst time the government could require this. I have 7 analog TV sets. Only one of them even has a coax connector. The rest have 2 screws for the 300 ohm flat lead. I ordered my coupons for converter boxes 2 months ago. I haven’t received anything. It looks like we don’t have any choice. They keep running the propaganda about DTV on local channels several times a day. The senior citizens are really confused about this. I used to repair TV’s back in the 1980′s and still get 3 to 4 calls a month from people that have an old TV in each room and don’t know what to do. I’ve also heard that if you’re in the inner city with a lot of tall buildings around, or in a fringe area out in the country, you may lose your signal altogether, even with the converter box. I read on a tech site that DTV will cut in and out like a cell phone does when it breaks up if you live in these areas. They estimated that as many as 11 million people nationwide will lose their signal. DTV will not go through tall buildings and will not go as far as analog TV does. This is going to be a real problem. The advertisers should be lobbying to extend analog TV at least another 5 years.

  148. first of all to the opening poster, what an epic fail this was, apparently im smoking crack as you put it, because i see commercials all over the tv about how in 2009 all tv will switch over to digital.

    now… I read alot of posts from people with the old tv’s that dont know what to do with them, well I have an idea…..

    what happens when all tv switches to digital and analog is abandoned? well if you live near my hometown then i suggest you start flipping around the old analog channels after they go down. we already have a crew out here working on the nations first guerrilla television station! thats right, the old tv’s wont be worthless any longer, as long as you live near any free thinkers. so bust out yout rabbit ears and throw away the digital box. real tv is comming soon

  149. first of all to the opening poster, what an epic fail this was, apparently im smoking crack as you put it, because i see commercials all over the tv about how in 2009 all tv will switch over to digital.

    now… I read alot of posts from people with the old tv’s that dont know what to do with them, well I have an idea…..

    what happens when all tv switches to digital and analog is abandoned? well if you live near my hometown then i suggest you start flipping around the old analog channels after they go down. we already have a crew out here working on the nations first guerrilla television station! thats right, the old tv’s wont be worthless any longer, as long as you live near any free thinkers. so bust out yout rabbit ears and throw away the digital box. real tv is comming soon

  150. The losers — the entire US citizenry. There will be no pocket TV’s, no radios with TV sound, no tv allowed away from home. The “pseudo-portable” sets may fit in a large purse, but only run for an hour. Tulsa Oklahoma lost power 12/07 to an ice storm, 1-3 weeks or more. All watched pocket TV’s, or at least listened to the CBS affilliate on standard FM radio. Any chance of “emergency TV” or “portable tv” ends February; this is not acceptable.

    The five “benefits” of DTV are bogus; the costs considerable. Each household MUST buy 4-6 converters — living room TV, vcr/dvdr, bedroom tv, kid’s-room, guest-room, bathroom, garage — anywhere there is a receiver. Digital sets are complex, thus more likely to fail, and expensive (or impossible) to repair.

    WE DON’T HAVE THE TECHNOLOGY to allow analog to shut off. I don’t care how big a fan you are of DTV, sign the pettition if only to protest “dictatorship”. No one’s giving us a choice.

    In two months non-subscription viewers will lose channels (reception goes from about 70 miles to as little as 20). More commercials, because HD is expensive; 2-hour movie now has nearly an hour of commercials.

    Truth is, analog is better; analog does not have “digital distortion”. Human eyes are low-resolution, “full screen”, and analog. “I-Max” is the best theater — and it’s full screen.

    We are not supposed to be a dictatorship. WE are the government; they do what WE say — but we’re being told “you WILL do what GOVERNMENT says”.

    Scream at your congressman, and sign the pettition; it’s not too late. Or keep quiet, and watch all your freedoms disappear, and prepare to pay and pay.

    One pettition to stop “analog shutoff” is at http://www.stophdtv.org

  151. The losers — the entire US citizenry. There will be no pocket TV’s, no radios with TV sound, no tv allowed away from home. The “pseudo-portable” sets may fit in a large purse, but only run for an hour. Tulsa Oklahoma lost power 12/07 to an ice storm, 1-3 weeks or more. All watched pocket TV’s, or at least listened to the CBS affilliate on standard FM radio. Any chance of “emergency TV” or “portable tv” ends February; this is not acceptable.

    The five “benefits” of DTV are bogus; the costs considerable. Each household MUST buy 4-6 converters — living room TV, vcr/dvdr, bedroom tv, kid’s-room, guest-room, bathroom, garage — anywhere there is a receiver. Digital sets are complex, thus more likely to fail, and expensive (or impossible) to repair.

    WE DON’T HAVE THE TECHNOLOGY to allow analog to shut off. I don’t care how big a fan you are of DTV, sign the pettition if only to protest “dictatorship”. No one’s giving us a choice.

    In two months non-subscription viewers will lose channels (reception goes from about 70 miles to as little as 20). More commercials, because HD is expensive; 2-hour movie now has nearly an hour of commercials.

    Truth is, analog is better; analog does not have “digital distortion”. Human eyes are low-resolution, “full screen”, and analog. “I-Max” is the best theater — and it’s full screen.

    We are not supposed to be a dictatorship. WE are the government; they do what WE say — but we’re being told “you WILL do what GOVERNMENT says”.

    Scream at your congressman, and sign the pettition; it’s not too late. Or keep quiet, and watch all your freedoms disappear, and prepare to pay and pay.

    One pettition to stop “analog shutoff” is at http://www.stophdtv.org