By Samantha Ptashkin
ROCKFORD - If you haven't already made the switch to digital TV, there's still time. You have until February of 2009. But if you want that clearer signal now, 13 News has more on how to make a smooth change.
By now you've heard if you don't have cable or a satellite dish, you'll need to buy a converter box by the time television goes digital. Quest General Manager Michael Cory says, "The cheapest most economical solution would be the DTV box, the digital box that's coming out."
The DTV box decodes digital signals, allowing people with old analog TVs to pick up channels. "The digital box is basically a VCR, in simple terms, that can hook up to your regular TV. And it operates pretty much the same way. It just has a tuner in it that decodes the digital signal and allows the TV that they currently have to understand that signal."
Every household gets two $40 coupons to buy a box. You can buy additional boxes for $70 -$80. After that, there's not much to getting set up. "You take your antenna signal, you know, if you're using an aerial antenna and you plug it in to the "in" and then you go to the "out" and then you designate on your TV a channel three, just like you would on your VCR."
And after the box is in, Cory says, "Once the digital box is in, as long as your antenna signal is sufficient, it will give you a digital signature and therefore give you the channel."
If you have problems, don't throw away the TV. Upgraded antennas could solve your problem. "If they do have problems with the connections they can call us and we can walk it through for them over the phone."