- You can purchase DTV converter boxes at most national and local electronics stores.Ryan McVay/Digital Vision/Getty Images
Digital Television (DTV) allows television broadcasters to provide you with improved sound and picture quality through advanced broadcasting technology. This technology can give you advanced wireless features, such as wireless broadband. As of 2009, you need a DTV converter box to watch digital programming, along with a built-in digital tuner in your TV. The DTV converter sits on top of your TV.
- Closed captioning allows individuals with hearing disabilities to read the dialogue or audio of a movie or TV show on the TV screen. Programs must have basic analog captions or advanced digital captions, meaning words with colors, fonts and sizes the viewer can customize and position on the screen.
Secondary Audio Programming
- The Secondary Audio Programming (SAP) feature provides audio broadcasts of other information for the viewer, such as a program simulcast in Spanish, for instance. SAP could also be a voice-over for those who have visual disabilities, so they can hear the description of what's happening on the screen. Four audio channels can be transmitted at one time in DTV. The DTV remote control may also have a SAP button.
- DTV converter boxes have remote controls, which vary with features and button sizes. Viewers can choose remotes that offer convenience and can be operated more easily, such as remotes with large buttons. Some DTV boxes have universal remotes, which can also control devices such as the stereo amplifier, VCR or DVD player.
- Although DTV boxes can scan for available channels, not every DTV box has the ability to add these channels without deleting channels already available. Viewers can use a function called "Direct Add," which allows the viewer to add channels if they know the radio frequency (RF) channel number. Some DTV boxes have update scans, which add new channels without deleting the current channels. Update scans can take five minutes or longer to complete.