Read these 8 Digital Cable TV Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Cable TV tips and hundreds of other topics.
Have you ever wondered if you can get digital cable on your computer screen? You now can! By using a digital cable tuner, you can bring digital cable to life on your PC. Of course, you will most likely need a computer that is compataible.
There is even a digital cable tuner which is designed specifically to use a CableCARD, which lets you receive special digital cable channels such as HBO, ESPN, and Cinemax. This special type of cable card must be installed by a cable installer and once it is installed, you can use your digital cable tuner and your CableCARD to bring high-definition digital cable right to your PC! An Internet search for "digital cable tuners for PC" should bring up the different types available. Be prepared, they won't come cheap!
Are you trying to find out what channels digital cable has to offer? Is your head spinning with all of the different choices in programming you have? It can be overwhelming learning about what each individual cable provider has to offer. Very often, the different providers offer very similar programming.
Usually, you can get up to 200 channels or more when you order a digital cable package depending on the provider, but 200 is about average. You can also choose between several movie channels and perhaps up to 12 international channels, as well. Most digital cable also offers approximately 45 free digital music stations. You should also receive local channels and several other channels such as TBS, MTV, Lifetime and many more.
What channels you get or don't get is dependent upon the package in which you sign up for. Most digital cable companies offer in-depth explanations of all of their package deals and you can even choose to compare digital cable packages at sites like connectmycable.com. The possibilities may seem endless because there are so many to choose from!
Prices for digital cable vary because it all depends on which type of package you want and how many channels, including channels that cost extra such as HBO and Cinemax. On average, choosing satellite television over digital cable is actually cheaper, but may not be available in every area for consumers. Satellite subscribers can expect to pay around $30 for 50 channels. Most often, you will have to agree to contract terms of approximately one year to two years. Digital cable television will typically cost you more than $30 for 50 channels.
As with purchasing anything, you will want to do some research. It is important to compare both digital cable and satellite to see which one works best for you both channel-wise and price-wise.
You may be wondering who the major digital cable television providers are. Well look no further, because here is a list of the "big ones" in the cable industry.
Time Warner Cable is one you have probably heard of. Offered throughout the country, you may even be a subscriber to this cable company. Time Warner offers it all. You can get not only 200 digital cable channels, but you can also get Internet access and digital phone service. Perhaps they aren't available to you, but don't fret, there are others.
Comcast is the number one major service provider for digital cable television. Comcast also offers over 200 digital cable channels, Internet service and digital voice service. Are they available in your area? You will want to do some searching to find out.
Cox cable is another digital cable provider, though not perhaps as well-known as the other two. Cox cable offers over 240 digital cable channels, Internet access and digital phone service, as well. Cox isn't available everywhere, but you can do an Internet search to see if they are in your area!
A digital cable remote control is essentially your navigation system for your digital cable. Have you taken a good, hard look at digital cable remote controls? Those things do just about everything you can imagine when it comes to controlling your digital cable and it is as easy as touching a few buttons.
A digital cable remote control helps you explore your digital cable options. With your remote, you can pay your cable bill, watch Pay-Per-View movies, utilize your digital video recorder and even find a menu that tells you how to do everything else that isn't mentioned here. You can even block what you don't want your kids to view by using your remote control and following the on-screen directions.
Simply put, without your digital cable remote control, you would have no way to access that wonderful digital cable that you pay for each month.
Do you remember the days when you were watching a television show and you weren't sure what it was going to be about? Remember when you had to go find the newspaper's TV guide, search through it for the correct date and time to find the show's plot? Remember how much of a pain that could be? If you have digital cable, you no longer need to scrounge through the newspaper's small print to find a description, instead you can push the "info" button on your remote. This button will bring up a neat feature of your digital cable -- a feature that describes right on your TV screen what the show you are viewing is about.
Another cool feature of digital cable is the ability to rent a movie through your digital cable, watch it and even pause it, fast forward or go back, during your viewing. This is referred to as "Video on Demand" and is a popular feature in digital cable.
You can even add onto your digital cable package with DVR, or a Digital Video Recorder, in which you can record programs from your digital cable without the use of a videotape. Instead, it records the program directly to a hard-drive digital storage system. This allows the viewer to also pause live television shows in real time (such as NFL football games) and return to the show without missing anything at all!
High Definition (HD)digital cable receivers are the one box source for all your high-definition digital cable needs. A digital cable receiver can do it all. If you have high-definition television and you want HD programs and interactive digital cable, then a high definition digital cable may be a choice for you.
High-definition digital receivers should be compatible with most HD televisions and should allow you to watch programs on stations that don't yet have high-definition. You may also be able to get video on demand, interactive programming guide right on your television screen and free digital music with a high-definition digital cable receiver.
Ask your cable company today about how you can get a high-definition digital cable receiver in your home. Remember though, if you don't have HDTV (high-definition television) you can't get a HD digital cable receiver!
Whether you have digital cable or satellite, you are bound to run into some common problems that occur with both of these. Many people don't realize exactly what these problems are before making a decision to purchase digital cable. What are some of the more common digital cable problems?Snowy looking channels or some sort of interference: This is a common problem with digital cable users. You should call your cable company to report this, but you may also be able to fix it at home. First, try to make sure all of your cable connections are tight, a loose one can cause a funny looking picture. This is just one of many ways to fix a snowy looking screen. Refer to your cable guide or call your cable company for other reasons.
Your television isn't showing a picture or it has a picture, but no sound. This is another very common occurrence in the cable television world. Before you call the cable company, try checking to make sure everything that is connected is still plugged in. If a plug isn't the problem, refer to your cable guide for more information.
The above two reasons are two of the most common digital cable problems occurring today. Remember, before you pick up that phone and call your cable provider, you can check their website for more trouble shooting answers and you may even be able to fix the problem yourself!
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|