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  1. #21  
    Quote Originally Posted by The Phone Diva View Post
    What do you think about the analog to digital TV transition? Just like with computers, I'm going to bet there's numbers who don't have the money for a new TV or did not buy into the "newfangled" stuff. I'm thinking of older people and also those people who just don't have the cash to throw down for a new TV right now and are doing fine with the old one.

    My VCR just went wacko after serving for a LONG time in electronics years, so I guess I either need to find a "merged with DVD" one to try moving those old tapes to DVD copies, or just switch to DVD entirely. Fortunately I have a DVD player and may try to get a used VCR to hook up and record tapes over to DVD. The DVD switch is the one thing I'VE been slow on because I hate the thought of recording all those personal tapes to DVD. DVD movies are cheap online so that part is easy fortunately.
    Interesting that you asked about that --

    I today cancelled my cable --

    My provider decided to remake itself as all encrypted digital -- REQUIRING a converter box to view ANYTHING.

    When I asked them why, their expert Bozos swore the FCC had demanded it.

    This clearly is a lie -- the digital conversion stuff is only for broadcast, it most definitely does not apply to cable. I'm plenty POed that they had been instructed to spout such nonsense.

    It screws me since none of my tuners can decipher their signal (even those that are supposedly clear Quam capable -- whatever that means.)

    Except for an occaisonal Resdskins game, everything I watch is recorded on one of several DVRs (in PCs and laptops.)

    This lets me forego commercials, watch news type stuff at double normal speed, and to save, edit, and potentially use video clips.

    Luckily most everything I care about is broadcast HD (network news, Survivor) or available online (Olberman, Daily Show...)

    I'm looking now at switching to Comcast -- the horror ...
    755P Sprint SERO (upgraded from unlocked GSM 650 on T-Mobile)
  2. #22  
    Usually you only need the converter box for their "hidden from those who don't subscribe" content on those really high digital channels that I don't think TVs will go up to. For regular or expanded cable, shouldn't the hook-up to the antenna work? It does around here.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  3. #23  
    you need a converter box (digital tuner) to view the over-the-air diigital broadcasts if do not have a digital tuner built into your tv already. you dont need a converter box if you alreayd have some sort of set top box (cable/satellite)

    i run analog expanded cable and my provider will still broadcast in analog after the fcc broadcast over-the-air switch to analog. i currently run four tuners in a windows media center box (tvpack 2008)i built and it is an incredible way to watch tv.

    when my cable company decides to force me to switch to digital, if it is encrypted, i will drop service and go over-the-air. if it is unencrypted, i will try to work out clear QAM with digital tuners like hauppauge 2250's.
  4. #24  
    OTA HD broadcast is not encrypted -- and I have a decent number of those -- 15+ including 5 PBS channels (and potentially 25+ hd channels depending on the antenae orientation).

    All my tuners went dead when they made the digital switch.

    They told me that everything was encrypted, and that a converter box was required for anything.

    This seems suicidal -- and maybe there was some work around that they in their ignorance did not know -- or BARYE in his pique was too impatient to discover...

    (car_designer -- GM thread ??)
    Last edited by BARYE; 11/26/2008 at 01:49 PM.
    755P Sprint SERO (upgraded from unlocked GSM 650 on T-Mobile)
  5. #25  
    Which company is this?
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  6. #26  
    Quote Originally Posted by The Phone Diva View Post
    Which company is this?
    RCN -- a small regional company, primarily in the DC area, though in some other NE markets as well.

    (CS is poor, but very fast broadband)
    Last edited by BARYE; 11/26/2008 at 01:59 PM.
    755P Sprint SERO (upgraded from unlocked GSM 650 on T-Mobile)
  7. #27  
    Quote Originally Posted by BARYE View Post
    Interesting that you asked about that --

    I today cancelled my cable --

    My provider decided to remake itself as all encrypted digital -- REQUIRING a converter box to view ANYTHING.

    When I asked them why, their expert Bozos swore the FCC had demanded it.

    This clearly is a lie -- the digital conversion stuff is only for broadcast, it most definitely does not apply to cable. I'm plenty POed that they had been instructed to spout such nonsense.

    It screws me since none of my tuners can decipher their signal (even those that are supposedly clear Qam capable -- whatever that means.)...

    seems as though my experience is far from unique -- CNET reports that cable company lying is de rigeur in their move to digital conversion and encrypting...



    The other digital-TV transition
    Marguerite Reardon CNET News
    December 1, 2008

    As a cable customer, I thought I was immune to any problems related to the upcoming digital-TV transition. But I recently discovered that cable's own migration to digital-TV transmission also has its share of headaches.

    Imagine my surprise last month when I turned on the TV in my bedroom to watch a rerun of Sex and the City to discover that TBS, which had been part of my basic cable package, was no longer viewable. I clicked a few more channels and discovered that TNT was also missing. In fact, all that I am now left with on this particular TV are the basic national networks...

    When I first called Time Warner to inquire about what had happened, I was told by a misinformed customer service agent that my shrinking cable lineup was a result of the government mandated switch to digital TV.

    This information was, of course, incorrect. The transition to digital for over-the-air TV broadcasters was mandated by Congress and has a deadline of February 17, 2009, when all broadcasters will transmit signals only in digital format.

    But this broadcast transition to digital has nothing to do with the cable industry's switch to digital. In fact, for cable customers, the over-the-air switch to digital should have no effect on their service. Customers who subscribe to cable TV service won't have to get a digital converter box nor will they have to do anything else to their TVs in anticipation of the February 17 deadline.

    That said, cable is also migrating to digital transmission. As a result, I discovered that some cable operators, such as Time Warner Cable, are moving channels from their basic analog tier of service to a more expensive digital tier that requires renting a digital set-top box...

    Suspicious timing?
    Some consumer advocates say that the timing of these channel moves is suspicious considering it coincides with the broadcasters' transition to digital. A survey conducted in October by Consumer Reports found that about 19 percent of cable customers said they noticed in recent months channels in their basic cable package disappearing and moving to a higher tier.

    Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, argues that cable's timing for moving channels off basic service to a higher tier service was done deliberately to capitalize on the confusion around the over-the-air TV broadcast digital transition. Despite the fact that there is nothing legally prohibiting the cable industry from moving channels into different tiers, the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission has opened an inquiry into this practice.

    "The timing of these moves seems deceptive," said Joel Kelsey, a policy analyst at Consumers Union. "Many cable companies are doing this when consumer confusion is at its peak. Consumers essentially feel painted into a corner and are forced to choose between paying the same amount for less service or paying more to get the same service back."...
    Last edited by ronbo2000; 12/01/2008 at 07:45 PM. Reason: fixed terminating quote
    755P Sprint SERO (upgraded from unlocked GSM 650 on T-Mobile)
  8. #28  
    RCN operates in Chicago too. Lets hope Comcast doesn't pull the same crap because the wall antenna they place for service still works fine around here.


    P.S. This actually leads back to the original post. If cable companies do this, people will start downloading pirated movies and shows in greater numbers IMO. Cable is too damn expensive IMO. It's not even a true necessary "utility", not like electric, phone, water, etc. I'm going to bet that person in the article can find Sex and the City eps. free.
    Last edited by The Phone Diva; 12/01/2008 at 07:23 PM.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  9. #29  
    Quote Originally Posted by The Phone Diva View Post
    RCN operates in Chicago too. Lets hope Comcast doesn't pull the same crap because the wall antenna they place for service still works fine around here.


    P.S. This actually leads back to the original post. If cable companies do this, people will start downloading pirated movies and shows in greater numbers IMO. Cable is too damn expensive IMO. It's not even a true necessary "utility", not like electric, phone, water, etc. I'm going to bet that person in the article can find Sex and the City eps. free.
    encrypting the TV signal is something that this new digital world allows.

    I have had many instances of my DVR literally shutting down when DRMed material was seen by the DVR.

    While recording Olberman for example, my DVR literally halted recording when Olberman ran a clip from the Sopranos !!!

    Almost everything on HBO is I think, DRMed.
    Last edited by BARYE; 12/03/2008 at 09:50 AM.
    755P Sprint SERO (upgraded from unlocked GSM 650 on T-Mobile)
  10. #30  
    I've seen that before too. And my new DVD recorder clearly states that. VCRs used to allow you to record ANYTHING for personal use.

    Time to start downloading videos.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  11. #31  
    with more and more DVR "do not allow to record" flags, i think you will see a movement for development of open source dvr software/hardware that lets you get around these limitations. the only reason your dvr does not record is because the dvr manufacturter is agreeing to honor the broadcasters wishes per program. it could still easily be recorded.
  12. #32  
    Avoid Toshiba and Sony DVD recorders, they allow the "Do not record" signal through. I just needed something quickly for my VHS tapes, but I'm well aware I can't record most programs off TV. Makes the VCR look less and less like a throw away.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  13. #33  
    Quote Originally Posted by The Phone Diva View Post
    Avoid Toshiba and Sony DVD recorders, they allow the "Do not record" signal through. I just needed something quickly for my VHS tapes, but I'm well aware I can't record most programs off TV. Makes the VCR look less and less like a throw away.
    this entire HD/digital transition almost deserves its own thread.

    Its effects are so much more profound than simply new TVs for the masses.

    During the same '87 trip in Japan where I got an early peek of what later became Mazda's Miata, I also got a private tour of Sony's newly opened headquarters -- where I was shown an early version of HD television.

    It was impressive -- they showed me a big flat screened Trinitron HD CRT (it could have been maybe 50") -- and "theater quality" digital projection.

    The Sony executive and engineers told me that I was seeing the future of television.

    BARYE confidently told them that he was not -- that america's FCC would never adopt a new broadcast standard that would overnight transform millions of american voter's TV sets into paperweights.

    They heatedly said that BARYE was WRONG -- that Japan would adopt it and so would America.

    Twenty years have past -- and we are now adopting a new broadcast standard, and obsoleting the old -- but this is not the standard that Sony was attempting to persuade me of back then.

    Their original HD idea had been analog -- one that would have encompassed and absorbed MASSIVE bandwidth to function -- essentially excluding almost any other use of the broadcast spectrum except for maybe three networks.

    It was an incredibly arrogant and unrealistic proposal.

    Digital is what made it ultimately possible.

    It was only when technology and software matured that it was realistic to transform video .

    When the FCC finally adopted what become the new HD TV plan, I was skeptical as to their roadmap.

    I had hoped that they would prescribe a specific standard that all TVs would adhere to, and that all broadcasts would transmit to.

    I believed that a uniform standard would lessen the cost and complexity of TVs for consumers, and lessen the costs and complications for video producers and broadcasters.

    Microsoft was, if I recall correctly, one of the major protaganists that resisted that idea.

    In part because of Microsoft, eventually the FCC allowed a variety of HD standards -- 720P, 1080i etc. -- expecting that TV manufacturers would develop the electronics to handle them.

    In the end I think they were more right than me ...
    755P Sprint SERO (upgraded from unlocked GSM 650 on T-Mobile)
  14. #34  
    This question does tie in to the original post somewhat. WHY are entertainment giants being allowed to control what we watch, record, and what kind of equipment we can use? Now more than ever??? What is this?? I keep reading if you want to use HDMI, you need to use an approved monitor or something like that. Apple isn't the only one who did that. Directly from my Toshiba DVD recorder manual:

    To play back the digital video images of a DVD via an HDMI connection, it is necessary that both the player and the display device(or an AV amplifier) support a copyright protection system called HDCP(high-bandwidth digital content protection sytem). HDCP is copy protection technology that comprises data encryption and authentication of the connected AV device. This unit supports HDCP.

    GRRRR! I can't even use expensive advanced equipment without "authentication"! HDMI cables run $40 to over $100 in stores, less online although you have to hope the quality is good if the brand is generic. But my point is we don't have free use of equipment anymore, even though WE paid for it. My current TV has no HDMI port, but I'm in the market for an new HD TV and it probably will have it. With a copyright chip implanted, no doubt.

    To treat everyone as a criminal beforehand is insulting, and they want our money still. Someone commented that she/he needed to back up copies of their DVDs because their little kid has a bad habit of getting into things and they didn't want the originals destroyed, but these new machines have not allowed it(likely some signal from the DVD too). Personal use used to be taken for granted with the VCR, now they think everyone's a pirate first.

    I was able to copy industry VHS tapes to DVD no problem, but I'm going to bet I won't even be able to back up any of the newer DVDs if I wanted to.

    END OF RANT, LOL!
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  15. #35  
    Quote Originally Posted by bigredgpk View Post
    Right there, you two have violated the DCMA for cracking an encryption (don't worry, i'm not going to tell). But you own the DVDs? So why not copy it to your laptop to watch on a flight or put it on your iPod so you can watching Scrubs on the train. The law is wrong. You bought it so you should be able to do anything you want with it as long as it is for personal use.

    And the best DVD ripping software is Handbrake for Macs and Handbrake + DVD43 for PCs

    Maybe piracy isn't the solution, but it's a step in the right direction.


    Anyone try the ones on this page?

    http://www.dvdfab.com/free.htm
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
  16. #36  
    Quote Originally Posted by gksmithlcw View Post
    I don't believe this is justification for piracy. However, I think it makes a strong argument against DRM.
    I agree.
    No problem should ever be solved twice.

    Verizon Treo650 W/Custom ROM
  17. #37  
    Quote Originally Posted by DL.Cummings View Post
    I agree.
    in your brevity DL i often wonder --

    a relation to e e cummings ...
    755P Sprint SERO (upgraded from unlocked GSM 650 on T-Mobile)
  18. #38  
    Quote Originally Posted by The Phone Diva View Post
    This question does tie in to the original post somewhat. WHY are entertainment giants being allowed to control what we watch, record, and what kind of equipment we can use? Now more than ever??? What is this?? I keep reading if you want to use HDMI, you need to use an approved monitor or something like that. Apple isn't the only one who did that. Directly from my Toshiba DVD recorder manual:

    To play back the digital video images of a DVD via an HDMI connection, it is necessary that both the player and the display device(or an AV amplifier) support a copyright protection system called HDCP(high-bandwidth digital content protection sytem). HDCP is copy protection technology that comprises data encryption and authentication of the connected AV device. This unit supports HDCP.

    GRRRR! I can't even use expensive advanced equipment without "authentication"! HDMI cables run $40 to over $100 in stores, less online although you have to hope the quality is good if the brand is generic. But my point is we don't have free use of equipment anymore, even though WE paid for it. My current TV has no HDMI port, but I'm in the market for an new HD TV and it probably will have it. With a copyright chip implanted, no doubt. ...
    Diva -- I just (for no good reason) got a 47" 1080 120mhz TV for the BARYE cave.

    It has 5 HDMI ports. BARYE HDMI devices: 0.

    Cost: $899 free shipping (+ $50 sales tax).

    These are refurbished TVs from Philips -- which is ending its production of TVs and selling the business to Funai.

    It seems quite decent, but it came with only a 3 month warranty, so: Caveat emptor.

    BTW -- the site says employees only are eligible -- ignore this as they make no effort to confirm whether you're an employee, monkee, human, or the formerly Imperial Self of a great European enterprise...
    Last edited by BARYE; 12/07/2008 at 01:12 PM.
    755P Sprint SERO (upgraded from unlocked GSM 650 on T-Mobile)
  19. #39  
    Thanks! I'll consider it.

    BTW, I've converted several VHS tapes to DVD and then will rip them. Hopefully the copyright restriction won't show up on these DVDs since they are homemade.
    HP has officially ruined it's own platform and kicked webOS loyalists and early TouchPad adopters to the curb. You think after you drop it like a hot potato and mention it made no money and is costing you money, anyone else wants it??? Way to go HP!!

    And some people are fools to keep believing their hype. HP has shown they will throw webOS under the bus and people are still having faith in them??? News flash: if it's own company won't stand behind it, it's finished!
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