TV converter box

Also found in: Dictionary.

TV converter box

A set-top box that converts over-the-air digital TV broadcasts to analog for TV sets that accept only analog input (NTSC, PAL). It transforms digital broadcasts in standard definition (SD) and high definition (HD) to analog. Also called a "DTV, ATSC, digital or set-top converter box," "D/A converter" (DAC) or "digital TV adapter" (DTA). A similar set-top box is provided by cable companies that offer basic cable services (see DTA). See digital TV transition.

Analog Pass Through
Some 7,000 low-power TV stations in the U.S. were not required to switch to digital in 2009, and TV converter boxes may have an "analog pass through" capability that lets the viewer switch between analog and digital signals. At the end of their call signs, low-power stations have low power (LP) and Class A (CA) acronyms; for example, WWJT-LP and WTSD-CA. They may also start with K or W, followed by channel number; for example, W35BT and K36DC.

If viewers with analog TVs watch low-power analog and digital TV without the pass-through feature on the converter box, the antenna cable can be split into the antenna jacks on the TV and the converter box. The converter box is then cabled to the TV's A/V input jacks (RCA), and the TV is switched from antenna to A/V input to change from analog to digital and vice versa.

A TV Converter Box
There are myriad converter boxes to choose from such as this unit from Sansonic. Converter boxes may have analog pass-through for picking up analog signals from low-power stations. (Image courtesy of Sansonic Electronics USA LLC,
References in periodicals archive ?
To apply for a coupon worth $40 off the price of the tv converter box you will need, try one of these options taken from the digital tv web site:
Details: For more information on the transition to DTV and the TV Converter Box Coupon Program, go to www.
Because of the current economic situation, many families cannot afford to make purchasing a digital TV converter box a priority.
So if you want to continue using an old VCR to record TV shows off the air through your antenna, you'll need a digital TV converter box that produces analog signals that the VCR can record.
com Web sites are specifically designed to answer the most common questions, providing step-by-step instructions with photos on how to connect an analog-to-digital TV converter box to an existing TV set," Lewis continued.
Each winner will receive a GE digital TV converter box and RCA digital reception antenna.
com/), an authorized retailer in the government's TV Converter Box Coupon Program, people impacted by financial, language, mobility, and technological barriers will now be able to receive digital TV transmissions in their homes at no cost to them.
But not every antenna is the same, and we've created the ANT1500 to be the perfect complement to a digital TV receiver - whether that's a new TV or a digital TV converter box," Caskey said.
Those consumers will need to switch to digital TV by February by subscribing to a cable or video service, buying a new digital TV or purchasing a government approved TV converter box.
17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) today announced more than 16,800 over-the-air households in Alaska, those that rely on an antenna for broadcast TV, have requested coupons from the TV Converter Box Coupon Program.
A TV connected to cable, satellite or other pay TV service does not require a TV converter box from this program.