How to convert the J53 BW to receive digital broadcast signals
Since the antenna is part of the television set, I'm not sure how to connect the antenna to the converter box. The instructions that came with the converter box seem to indicate that the antenna needs to attach directly to the converter box. Can we still use the Jensen J53 BW?
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Re: How to convert the J53 BW to receive digital...
Certainly you can use your TV!
The converter box needs an antenna so it can tune the channels, but it doesn't have to be the antenna that's built into the TV. In fact, you'll get better reception if you use an antenna designed for the new DTV broadcasts. Several types are available at stores where they sell TVs, and they start at under $10.
Then you'll need to connect the converter box output to the TV so you can tune it in on channel 3 or 4. I'm not familiar with your Jensen set, but I've never seen a TV without some kind of connector for an external antenna. The most common type on small TV's is a jack similar to an earphone jack. Radio Shack sells an adapter that plugs in and allows you to connect the cable from the converter box. Take the set with you if necessary so you can find what you need.
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Everything is digital now. You will need a digital converter box. You will connect an antenna to it, and then connect the box to your tv. The box will come with it's own remote. Your tv will be set to channel 3 or 4 (depending on the converter box you get), and you will control the stations with the remote that came with the converter. You can get them at any electronics store.
You should be able to connect the TV to the antenna without the tuner converter box. If you still do not get signal you may need some type of signal amplifier between the antenna and TV. Hope that helps.
The news is not good, my friend.
The USA switched to digital broadcasts of TV signal around February 2009. Before that, all TV stations were transmitting analog signals. This TV has an analog tuner and is not able to receive digital broadcasts.
Unfortunately, this TV does not have any input jacks for coaxial cable, RCA cords, or even a plug for TV input. So you don't have any simple means to hook up to DVD players or videogames, or (most importantly) a digital-to-analog converter box. Basically, this TV has no value in the USA. If you take it to a country that still broadcasts NTSC analog signals over the air, though, you'll be in good shape. But if I'm on vacation in one of those places, the last thing I'm going to do is spend my time watching a teeny tiny television, you know?
Because the unit isn't likely to have an coaxial external cable input, there is no simple way to achieve this.
Full-size sets not equipped for digital signals can accept the down-converted signal from a converter box that receives the digital signal and converts it to NTSC standards for older sets.
Direct reception of the new signal requires an ATSC tuner and there is no way to provide that for your hand-held.
It would be possible to use the output of a converter box clipped onto the antenna of your Casio and see the channels the converter box can receive but your hand-held wouldn't be very portable anymore.
I was hoping I'd be able to find a manual or service info in my files once I knew the model, but no luck. So I don't know for sure on your TV, but almost every set Panasonic made had an external antenna connection. They usually used a mini jack, normally on the rear or one of the side panels. If you find a connection on your set, just pick up the appropriate adapter from Radio Shack. (The plug on an antenna cable is called an F-connector, so you can fling about tech terms.)
If this set truly has no external antenna connector, you can still hook a converter box to the set. Get a 75-ohm to 300-ohm converter (also called a balun). This has the threaded F-connector on one end and a length of flat two conductor antenna cable with terminals at the other end. Simply use an alligator clip jumper wire to clip one of the terminals to the TV's built-in rod antenna and turn the set to channel 3 or 4 for the converter box signal.
The bigger problem you might have is if you use this set without an AC power source. I haven't yet seen a converter box that allows you to use a DC power source. They all have built-in supplies and need AC. It might be possible to add a DC input jack to a converter, but I've never tried it.
Hope I've been able to help you. Thanks for asking here!