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Cablevision: Does the "Broadcast Basic" package really need a cable box?

hitchens
11-26-2007, 07:15 PM
I'm a Cablevision subscriber in northern NJ. I'm interested in the Broadcast Basic package, which contains most of the over the air channels in HD. They say I need a digital cable box. Why?

This cost for the box is about $6/month. Can I buy my own box? Any other options?

If not, I may just get a HD OTA antenna and give that a shot.

deadhead68
11-26-2007, 10:18 PM
I'm a Cablevision subscriber in northern NJ. I'm interested in the Broadcast Basic package, which contains most of the over the air channels in HD. They say I need a digital cable box. Why?

This cost for the box is about $6/month. Can I buy my own box? Any other options?

If not, I may just get a HD OTA antenna and give that a shot.

Does you TV have an internal QAM tuner? If so, you most likely won't need a box or antenna to get your locals in HD.

DeadHead68

oblioman
11-27-2007, 02:31 AM
I'm a Cablevision subscriber in northern NJ. I'm interested in the Broadcast Basic package, which contains most of the over the air channels in HD. They say I need a digital cable box. Why?

This cost for the box is about $6/month. Can I buy my own box? Any other options?

If not, I may just get a HD OTA antenna and give that a shot.

Please post your TV make & model.

hitchens
11-27-2007, 09:15 AM
I haven't purchased a HD set yet but I will be buying a TV with a QAM tuner. Still doing my research. But I'm trying to figure out how much my HD content will cost me. If I go OTA, it will be free. But if OTA doesn't work or is unreliable, then I have to subscribe to the "Broadcast Basic" package offered by Cablevision. I would like to minimize costs as much as possible. So I'm wondering... If my future TV set has a QAM will I need to pay $6 extra for cable box? Two CV reps that I spoke to insists that the box is necessary. But they may not know what they are talking about. So what's the story?

bicker
11-27-2007, 11:28 AM
Cable companies will soon be required to provide local broadcast digital channels via in-the-clear QAM, just like they're required to provide local broadcast analog channels in-the-clear today. I'm not sure about Cablevision, but most large cable companies are providing local broadcast digital channels via in-the-clear QAM today. You should ask around your neighborhood, or find a thread somewhere that is specific to your local area's cable service, since the answer from one town over could be different.

hitchens
11-27-2007, 08:57 PM
Cable companies will soon be required to provide local broadcast digital channels via in-the-clear QAM, just like they're required to provide local broadcast analog channels in-the-clear today.

When you say "soon", when exactly? Also, are there any links I can go to, to learn more about this regulation?

oblioman
11-28-2007, 03:25 AM
When you say "soon", when exactly? Also, are there any links I can go to, to learn more about this regulation?

If you be concerned about local channels only, you will save $$$$ by going the antenna route. Why pay the cable company for something that you can get free? Go to www.antennaweb.org (http://www.antennaweb.org) , put in your info and report back!!

bicker
11-28-2007, 04:28 AM
Here's the regulation:A commercial television station, broadcasting in both formats during the transition period, may choose must carry or retransmission consent for its analog signal and retransmission consent for its digital signal. A DTV-only commercial television station may elect either retransmission consent or must carry.[Source: FCC Report and Order, January 18, 2001.]

nmlobo
11-28-2007, 06:02 AM
There is a later ruling which apprears to give cable cos. the option of analog or digital. I'm not sure either the 2001 or recent ruling mandate the digital signal be transmitted in the clear. The Sep 2007 ruling states: "First, for a period of at least three years after the February 17, 2009 transition from analog to digital broadcasting, cable operators will be required to make the signals of local broadcast stations available to all of their subscribers by either: (1) carrying the television station's digital signal in an analog format, or (2) carrying the signal only in digital format, provided that all subscribers have the necessary equipment to view the broadcast content."

http://www.broadcastlawblog.com/archives/digital-television-fcc-adopts-postdigital-transition-mustcarry-rules-extends-ban-on-exclusive-programming-contracts-and-opens-inquiry-into-tying-agreements.html Option 2 'could' mean the cable company provides you with a cable box/card.

bicker
11-28-2007, 06:29 AM
That's correct. That newer ruling extends the period during which analog must be supported (somehow). So essentially, analog is required now, and then once the channel itself goes all-digital, the requirement becomes analog (somehow) and digital, until 2012, when the requirement becomes just digital.

Note also that Option 2 doesn't even say that the cable box has to be "free", or even "affordable". This most recent ruling is pretty much a win for cable companies.

kgatwork
11-28-2007, 04:35 PM
I haven't purchased a HD set yet but I will be buying a TV with a QAM tuner. Still doing my research. But I'm trying to figure out how much my HD content will cost me. If I go OTA, it will be free. But if OTA doesn't work or is unreliable, then I have to subscribe to the "Broadcast Basic" package offered by Cablevision. I would like to minimize costs as much as possible. So I'm wondering... If my future TV set has a QAM will I need to pay $6 extra for cable box? Two CV reps that I spoke to insists that the box is necessary. But they may not know what they are talking about. So what's the story?

I'm a Cablevision customer with Family cable and no HD box in fact I don't have any box's. I get the free HD channels over the cable, they are 2,4,5,7,9,11,13, and 21 iirc. I'm on L.I. western suffolk county. Hope that helps.

hitchens
11-28-2007, 05:41 PM
Thank you all for your input. I'll be getting a HDTV set soon and will know for sure then. I'm keeping my finger crossed that I'll be able to get HD content over my current Broadcast Basic plan. Otherwise, I'll try OTA.