Getting an HD display, what else do I need

Discussion in 'Displays' started by ScottATL, Nov 16, 2005.

  1. ScottATL

    ScottATL Stunt Coordinator

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    Ok, I am set on the plasma, but what else do I need to go with it to receive HD? I live about 20 miles from downtown Atlanta and I've been told I can receive locals with an over the air antenna. What type of cables will I need to connect the HD antenna to my plasma?

    Now, currently I have DTV, but I think I am going to switch to cable once my basement is completed in a few months. At that point, I will have 7-8 TV's with 3 of them wanting HD on.

    Here is the harder question. What do I need to split the HD signal coming from my antenna to 3 TV's? Or will I even need the OAA at that point because I will be getting all HD channels from my cable company through coax?
     
  2. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    You should be getting HD channels via your cable company. You'll need to make sure that they offer HD service in your area and you'll need an HD convertor box for each of the HD TVs you have.

    I just went HD ahead of my planned schedule. While the rennovation in my living room is still on-going and I haven't even settled on a new main TV yet (although I'm strongly considering the new 50" Sony SXDR), I ended up buying a Westinghouse 27" LCD flat panel to replace both the 17" LCD monitor and 13" TV I've had in my home office. Since it is HD-ready I also went ahead and ordered up HD service from my cable company. They are skipping the convertor-only boxes in favor of HD-DVRs from Scientific Atlanta. (Not as cool or as user friendly as TiVo, by any means, but they do the basic job.)

    The standard def channels come in on their regular cable numbers (mostly below 50.) All the available HD channels (including a number of sports and premium channels I don't subscribe to) come in between 701 and 800. My old TVs and TiVos get their input from the regular digital cable boxes, while the new set connects to the HD-DVR. Eventually I'll have a second HD-DVR connected to the new living room TV.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  3. Allan Jayne

    Allan Jayne Cinematographer

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    When you are using the antenna you need either an HDTV OTA set top box or a built in ATSC tuner for each HDTV.

    You can wait until you have HD cable installed and you will then need one HD cable box for each HDTV.

    Especially with HD cable you will want to wait until you can get an HDTV set you like that has an HDCP compliant digital input. Soon there will be HD cable offerings that can only be seen in HD if your TV is HDCP compliant.

    Video hints:
    http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/video.htm
     
  4. ScottATL

    ScottATL Stunt Coordinator

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    if it has the built in dcr, do you still need the set top boxes for each display. Really, what I am trying to find out if additional cabling is needed between the rooms because I am about this close to putting sheetrock on the ceiling.
     
  5. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    If it has a built-in DCR then you don't need a set-top box to decode over-the-air signals, but you'd obviously still need to connect the TV to your antenna, which presumably would require some kind of wire. Ditto if you're getting your signal from your cable provider - AFAIK the DCR would not replace your cable box. So any way you slice it, you probably should plan on running some kind of cable to each of the rooms where you intend to have a TV.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  6. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    Since you're near Atlanta i'm guessing you'll be getting Comcast cable. You'll need an HDTV box for each HDTV. A regular HD cable box is $5 per month (each) and HD DVRs are $10 per month (each). They connnect to the standard cable feed to each room.
     
  7. ScottATL

    ScottATL Stunt Coordinator

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    I wish, all I can get is Adelpia

    CableCARD slot allows optional access to analog, digital and premium cable and HDTV without the need for a set-top box (contact your local cable company for more information)

    So for this unit, all i would need is a cable feed, or a signal from my OTA, correct?
     
  8. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    I feel your pain. Adelphia truly sucks. Two things about CableCards:

    1) They are one-way devices. If you connect that way you won't have access to any of the interactive features on your cable system, including on-line program ordering and pay-per view.

    2) In my case, at least, there wasn't that much of a price savings in going with a CableCard vs. a set-top box. A couple of bucks a month vs. a standard STB, and only a little more from their to 2-tuner HD-DVR. Unless you don't need an HD-DVR, don't need on-line pay-per-view, etc. and really, really don't want to have to see/find room for a cable box, I can't see the advantage of the CableCard.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  9. ScottATL

    ScottATL Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the info. Knowing that it is simplex will prevent me from wondering why I can't get the fight on it.
     

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