Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Can I use a TV Tuner in my dorm at college?

  1. Feb 17, 2009 #1
    I want to buy a TV tuner for my computer but I want to know if I will still be able to use it in college. I am going to be living in a dorm and think it would save me a lot of money to buy a tuner instead of a TV. But I don't know if dorm rooms get cable or satellite.
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 17, 2009 #2


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    What country?
    The US is in the process of switching from analogue to digital transmissions so you will need a digital (ATSC?) tuner, the UK is switching in a few years - but you will get extra channels with a digital (freeview) receiver.

    Of course you aren't going to have time to watch TV - what with all the sex drugs and calculus.
  4. Feb 17, 2009 #3
    It's will be in the US. And if I do find time to watch TV will I be able to get DirecTV in my dorm or will I have to use an antenna?
  5. Feb 17, 2009 #4


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Dorm rooms are almost always standard cable, which today means you may use a digital tuner if you want, but you don't have to. After the digital switch, I'm not really sure if the analog broadcast channels will be dropped or will be converted from digital to analog for analog customers. My cable company hasn't been clear about that. Other analog cable channels, however, will remain analog at least for now.
  6. Feb 18, 2009 #5


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Most US colleges provide some kind of TV service. Usually they contract with the local cable TV company. Some might use satellite instead. Some might have their own master antenna system that feeds campus buldings. The details vary from one college to another so ask the people in charge of TV at your college to be most certain of getting correct answers.

    Likewise for policies on installing your own antenna, whether for over-the-air TV or satellite TV.

    The FCC requires cable companies that provide any analog service to provide analog versions of local broadcast channels, even after those channels have shut down their analog signals, until at least 2012. The cablecos can convert from digital to analog as necessary.

    If a cable company converts completely to digital, then it can drop those analog local channels and provide only the digital versions.

    By the way, some of my local stations shut off their analog signals tonight, about an hour and a half ago. Tonight was the original deadline for all stations to shut down their analog signals, until Congress pushed it back to June 12 at the request of the Obama administration.
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2009
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook