By Laura Gibbs
ROCKFORD (WREX) - New legislation delays the national digital TV switch until June, but not for WREX. We're changing on February 17th.
WREX and CW viewers who do not have cable or satellite need a converter box in place and the channels tuned. 13 News headed to American TV to learn what it takes to switch from analog to digital. General Manager Steve Grappe says, "Whatever antenna you're currently using. There's not a special digital antenna, there's not an analog."
The cable coming out of your antenna goes into the back of your converter box. Grappe states, "Make sure you have it on the "in" there's going to be a "RF in" and "RF out." Or "antenna in" and "antenna out." Make sure you put the antenna co-ax into the 'in'."
Another cable runs out of the converter box to the back of the TV. Look for "ant-in." Grappe tells 13 News, "This is just going to take the place of where your antenna was hooked up."
On the back of the converter box you'll see 3 or 4. Grappe states, "Whatever channel you have this on, your TV has to match it." Just because you have the in and out chord in the right place doesn't mean you're done. There's another important step to making this transition and it's going to involve the remote control you get from your converter box. You have to scan the channels. Go into menu, click auto program. Hit ok. Let the scanning begin.
Grappe states, "It's going to go through looking for channels. This goes to 100% once it does it has found all the channels."
For WREX/CW you're looking for 13-1 or 13-2. Don't scan channels till after we switch. After 1:30 p.m. on February 17th run that scan to save our digital channel. We're planning on being in black that day for about an hour.
Despite the law moving the deadline to June 12th, it allows stations as long as they ask for permission from the FCC to stick to the old deadline if they want. WREX/CW plans to stick to the original plan. We've done some research that shows fewer than 1% of households in the Rockford area will not be ready February 17th.
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