5 Things to Do Before Buying an HDTV

Get the Necessary HDTV Accessories
An HDMI cable is something you may need if your HDTV doesn't come with one.
An HDMI cable is something you may need if your HDTV doesn't come with one.
© iStockphoto/mgouw

As it stands, you can receive high-definition programming one of two ways: You can pay for it through a local cable television provider or satellite service such as DirecTV or DISH Network -- or you can receive it free over the air (FOTA). If you choose to receive FOTA signals, you need a powerful antenna to attach to one of the coaxial connectors on the back of the HDTV.

If you choose a satellite or cable service, you'll still need a few things before you can view HDTV. For one, you'll need either an HDMI or component video cable to plug your set-top box into the HDTV. You cannot receive an HD signal from a set-top box through any other type of cable including composite video, S-video or RG-59 (standard coaxial) cable. The other thing to consider is whether or not the HDTV has a built in HD tuner. Most newer HDTVs typically do. If the one you're considering doesn't, you'll need to purchase one. Again, this can be solved by your cable or satellite set-top box most of the time.

Talk to your cable or satellite installer before hand to determine if you need to buy either a HDMI or component video cable. Most installers provide them, sometimes at an additional cost. Once you have everything you need, you're ready to enjoy the world of high definition.

For more information about high-definition TV and other related topics, tune in to the links on the next page.

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