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How to Set up a DTV Converter Box on an Older TV

by Staff Writer

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Standard television

Things You Need:

  • Digital converter box
  • Your existing television
  • "Rabbit ear" antenna

If you lost your television signal when TV stations converted to the all-digital format, then you probably need a digital converter box, sometimes called an ATSC tuner. Once you have that box, you still need to connect it to your existing television and antenna. With these easy steps, you'll be watching digital TV broadcasting in no time.

Setting up a DTV Converter Box:

  1. Connect your digital TV converter box to your TV with the high-quality connection that both your TV and your converter box have. Some digital converter boxes have S-video connections, which should be your first choice. If there is no S-video connector, you'll want to use the RCA video connection. With either an S-video or an RCA video connection, you'll probably use RCA audio connections, which is typically a pair of connectors, one red and one white. If neither of these connections are an option, use the coaxial connector to connect the converter box to the television; a coaxial connection will carry both the audio and the video, so you won't need to use RCA audio connections.

  2. Connect your antenna to the "antenna" input on the converter box.

  3. Once you connect your digital converter box to your television, make sure both the converter box and the television are plugged into a power outlet and turn them both on.

  4. Depending on how you connected your digital converter box to your television, you may need to set your television to channel 3 or 4 or possibly to an input setting specific to using either the RCA video input or the S-video input on your television, such as "Video 1" or something similar. The user's manual for your television is your best source of information here.

  5. Once everything is connected and turned on and your TV is set to the correct channel, the digital TV menu should appear. Your first step to using the digital converter box to watch TV will probably be to perform a "channel search" from the converter box's menu. (If the channel search process doesn't find any channels, try adjusting your antenna and perform the channel search again.) Once you've completed these five steps correctly, you should be able to enjoy digital broadcasting from your TV.

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