kirk and i have an hdtv, but it’s an older model and doesn’t have a built-in tuner. it’s just a monitor. so without paying for cable, we’ve never been able to get a television signal. no cable, no signal, no tv. and since we dropped cable about a year ago, the only things we’ve used the tv for was netflix rentals and playing with the wii.
with the upcoming broadcast conversion from analog to digital, the government is providing $40 coupons to buy a converter box. my tv doesn’t have a tuner, so i wasn’t sure if it would work or not. what the hell, right? so i sent off for my $40 coupon, and used it to buy the converter box. total price was $60, so my net cost was $20. i bought an indoor amplified antenna as well, for $40, so total out of pocket expense was about $60, or half the price of one month of cable.
hooked it all up last night. i figured if it didn’t work, i’d take it all back. no harm, no foul.
it all works brilliantly. not only do i have television, but the converter box has widescreen capability, so the digital picture fills in the entire widescreen. it’s not true hd, but the resolution is just fine — comparable to watching a dvd, probably. and the indoor amplified antenna pulls in 21 stations. some you’ll never watch — there’s one channel that’s just a cam set up in times square, some spanish-language stuff, and what-not, but for a one-time $60 payment i can now watch the networks and other local stations. and there’s great sound coming from my stereo and a great digital picture on my hdtv.
i’m still not going to watch that much tv — i like not knowing who flunked the lie detector when asked questions about their wife, or if i’m smarter than a fifth grader, or whatever. but i can watch the news, and keep up with the election, and whatnot, and that’s a good thing.
thanks, government. you got it right this time.