Thursday, February 5, 2009

DTV is horrible!!

I don't know about anyone else, but so far, my experience with this whole DTV thing has been pretty negative.

First off, there was the whole process getting your little $40 coupon from the government, and then finding a converter box. I swear, not only were the coupons hard to come by, the converter boxes were next to impossible to locate.

I live out in the sticks, no cable, no satellite, just a pair of rabbit ears to tune in the local stations, and you know what, I never felt particularly disadvantaged. There was one station you could only watch through a lot of snow, I just didn't watch any programs on that station, bugged my wife a little, but oh well.

So I'm told I have to get this stupid converter, because in February, my TV is going to go dark. I finally get the thing, and get it hooked up, and you know what? I had better luck with the plain old rabbit ears.

I don't know if it's because we're in a mountainous area, or what, but we get horrible reception with the DTV box. The rabbit ears are still hooked up to it for tuning purposes, but don't seem to do any good with the digital broadcast signals.

At least when I was watching analog broadcasts, I could still watch and enjoy the program, even though there might be a little fuzz or snow in the picture, or maybe even one of those faint, off-set, ghost images. Now, with the wonderfulness that is digital broadcast. If the signal isn't coming in perfect, I either get no signal, or I'm plagued with 1980's Max Headroom flashbacks as my television stutters it's way through a program. It really makes the program unwatchable. I can watch it with a bit of snow, but watching the Max antics which means you lose several seconds of dialogue each time, just is horrendous. Just when something interesting is about to happen, cue Max Headroom and his digital stutter :(

Just last night I was totally unable to tune in the CBS station on digital broadcast. After a frustrating 15 minutes, I decided to try turning the converter box off, and tuning in the separate station on the TV. Guess what, I watched the remainder of my program just fine. A little bit of fuzz in the picture, but no glaring digital stutters.

Thanks so much Big Brother, for forcing me to use a new and improved version of something that wasn't broken to begin with. You've done your usual outstanding job. I'm guessing some fatcat in DC is getting rich off of this. Wish he had to watch my TV....