Will I Be Screwed on February 17th?

February 17th is when television stations will switch off their analog signal and go to all digital. Since I’m currently a Comcast cable subscriber, I’ve been told not to worry since Comcast will continue to transmit analog signals through my cable line. However, I already have digital cable service through Comcast (with requires a special set top box for each TV in my house), and from what I’ve read the new analog signals after February 17th will only be for the lower channels. As of today, I can receive up to channel 99 using my TV Tuner card, but I believe I’ll be limited to channels 1 through 39 after February 17th. Since my favorite channel is number 59 (SciFi Channel), I may be screwed when the analog-to-digital switch over takes place.

I suppose one option will be to get a set top box for my PC and use it with my TV Tuner card, but there’s no way for my PC and Tuner Card to “change” the channel of the set top box. I’ll probably need to get a new TV Tuner card to accommodate the digital signal, but I’ll wait until after the 17th and readup on how others in my same situation have resolved the problem. Stay tuned for more…


6 thoughts on “Will I Be Screwed on February 17th?

  1. Comcastcares1 says:

    As long as your TVs are connected to cable, you should still be able to view the channels you currently have after the transition in February.

    Best Regards,

    Mark Casem
    Comcast Corp.
    National Customer Operations

  2. Steve says:

    There IS a way. The IR blaster that came with my Hauppauge PVR-150 never worked so I got a Microsoft MCE Remote which comes with an IR receiver and a Blaster (actually 2 of Them) and it changes the channel on my Satellite box all the time. I use a free PVR program (GB-PVR) and it allows the MCE IR blaster to work, but I believe Windows Media Center will as well. It only cost me $35 for the Remote, Receiver & Blasters as a set.

  3. Ross says:

    Comcastcares1 Is correct. The digital conversion ( which is likely to he delayed, again, do a quick google search), only imports over the air broadcasts.

    Anything over cable will not be imparked, regardless of how your cable company delivers it to you (although almost all of it is digital at this point, at least until it gets to or near your house]

  4. zunetips says:

    Thanks for the info. As I mentioned in my posting, I currently can access up to channel 99 with Comcast using my TV Tuner card. Will that be the same after Feb 17th? I thought I read that the max channel I could access would be 39 using my tuner card…

  5. Ross says:

    News to me. Unless Comcast is changing the way they deliver to your area, and encrypting (that’s why you need the cable box on your TV, to decrypt the channels) the signal for channels above 39 I think you’re ok.

  6. Steve says:

    You will still be able to get all your channels through the Comcast cable, the change will only effect people who do not subscribe to a cable service and get their TV over the air for free.

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