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(14,488 posts)
6. UTUSN, here's some basics....
Sun Jan 27, 2019, 03:51 AM
Jan 2019

1. The only true "cutting the cord" is using an old-fashioned antenna to receive digital TV from regular broadcast stations. Most newer TVs have built-in digital tuners and you can still buy digital-to-analog converters for older TVs. Just like the old days, this programming is FREE. Here in the Louisville area, we get all three major networks plus PBS stations. In addition, each of those broadcasts several sub-channels, so you get a lot of programming - although some of it is older stuff like re-runs.

2. Cutting the cord is a misnomer for most people because (for example) for the programming you listed, you must at least have high-speed internet. That's where the big change comes in though, because instead of getting your TV signals via a cable or satellite modem and expensive monthly subscription, you will be getting your video and audio "streamed" in over the internet with much cheaper subscription fees. So, you will at least need to have a good internet service with a WIFI modem (the modem can also feed your computer via WIFI or Ethernet cable).

3. A "modem" simply an electronics box that converts a service provider's information transmission signal (cable RF, satellite RF, DSL, etc.) to signals your equipment can process and use. For example, my AT&T DSL line modem converts the DSL signal superimposed on my telephone line into a standard data stream my computer can talk to via an Ethernet or USB cable.

4. "Streaming" simply means that the TV programming (audio and video) is fed continuously from the internet modem to your TV conversion device (Roku, Firestick, etc.), as opposed to time-sharing data streams that might be in multi-computer systems.

5. So, you can use a combination of programming off an antenna (assuming you can get reception at your location) and streaming programming from the internet. That's what we do here. I've actually had friends that had been on cable so long they didn't even know about the free stuff off a simple antenna (I set one up temporarily using a set of old beat-up rabbit ears. The lady said wow, now I can watch my soaps again!).

6. So, once you have your high-speed WIFI internet box set up, the next step is to select a receiver unit such as a Roku box (or stick) that converts the WIFI stream to signals your TV can process. These units typically connect to your TV either via a HDMI cable or older type video/audio (red/white/yellow) connectors. For example, the Roku boxes cost between $30 and $80, depending on features and they include a remote control. I hope some other folks her can comment on other systems that are available, such as Hulu and Amazon (I'm using Roku as my example because it's one I've been studying for my home).

7. After you have your internet and your TV converter receiver set up, then you choose any optional programming you want to pay for. All these systems give you lots of FREE programming, so you just have to buy the box and pay your monthly internet fee to a cable company such as Time Warner or AT&T.

8. You would set up an account say, with Roku, and then you can turn optional programming "channels" on and off as you wish. So, for example, if you only wanted to watch NFL coverage during the playoffs and Super Bowl, you could switch that channel "on" only for say, a couple of months. Same with movie channels.

Hope this helps you get started and you can PM me or answer this post with any questions. Others here that have more experience than me in using these services can help with the details, too.

I'm this close to cutting the cord myself. Laffy Kat Jan 2019 #1
You can get HBO with HULU. It's an upcharge though, and I don't know how much. Squinch Jan 2019 #15
I believe HBO on Hulu is $15 n/t TexasBushwhacker Jan 2019 #18
We cut the cord and have hulu. I really like hulu and you can get msnbc and cnn demgrrrll Jan 2019 #2
But isn't the problem with streaming Sucha NastyWoman Jan 2019 #3
Hulu does not seem to be like this at all. You just go back and forth to whatever you demgrrrll Jan 2019 #14
Neither are Netflix and Amazon Prime. If you are watching a series yellowdogintexas Jan 2019 #41
Sling Blue CloudWatcher Jan 2019 #4
Willing to adjust to internet but want to stick to tv not laptop UTUSN Jan 2019 #5
My son knows how to link a smart phone or laptop to a tv. Delmette2.0 Jan 2019 #54
you don't have to watch streaming on your laptop you can do it on tv imavoter Jan 2019 #56
UTUSN, here's some basics.... KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #6
great information KT2000 Jan 2019 #7
See additional stuff, below. KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #12
Wow for all that, will digest. I do have wifi & antenna for locals, will digest more, thanks UTUSN Jan 2019 #8
BOOKMARKING THIS! Thank you so much! Squinch Jan 2019 #16
We have a ROKU on one tv and Amazon Firestick on the other yellowdogintexas Jan 2019 #9
Question, Yellowdog.... KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #13
We have a router and Spectrum has amazing bandwidth in our area yellowdogintexas Jan 2019 #42
Bandwidth can be a problem csziggy Jan 2019 #62
you will love streaming. You will learn about bingeing yellowdogintexas Jan 2019 #10
UTUSN, here's some good reference info for you.... KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #11
Wow, KY_EnviroGuy, you are SO helpful, am just getting started processing your info, thanks! UTUSN Jan 2019 #19
Yes. KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #20
Hmmm, speed results are: "ping 7 - download 7.04 - upload 1.10" UTUSN Jan 2019 #21
Here's a couple more thoughts.... KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #25
Sorry, I screwed up! KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #26
I'm away right now, the 7 is the middle of speed test. I'm definite DSL. UTUSN Jan 2019 #29
You're very fortunate. KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #31
Our DSL is slower than that, around 4 using the speed test link above. hunter Jan 2019 #63
So things can work out with not crazy-stellar numbers, yes? UTUSN Jan 2019 #64
When we first subscribed to Netflix, watching on a Nintendo Wii... hunter Jan 2019 #65
we are on our third ROKU. The first one was hard cabled into our old TV yellowdogintexas Jan 2019 #43
Thanks, Yellowdog - very helpful. KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #48
I love this thread. Thank you, UTUSN for starting it, and thanks to all the contributors! Squinch Jan 2019 #17
Haha, love the (typo?) "threat" - but it is a very real THREAT to Dish for losing another customer!1 UTUSN Jan 2019 #22
Oops! Correcting. Squinch Jan 2019 #23
AWww, leave the joke in!!!!!!1 UTUSN Jan 2019 #24
Great thread. Extremely helpful. Thanks. Bookmarking. NT mahatmakanejeeves Jan 2019 #27
I want to cut cable so thanks for asking and thanks for the replies steventh Jan 2019 #28
I appreciate this thread also. badhair77 Jan 2019 #30
We have an inexpensive medium speed DSL connection, the least expensive Netflix plan... hunter Jan 2019 #32
When I brought my house in 1993 the previous owner left a hugh satellite dish in our backyard kimbutgar Jan 2019 #33
Yip that dinosaur dish was something, don't remember how I got rid of it!1 UTUSN Jan 2019 #34
We had a wind storm and the thing broke in half kimbutgar Jan 2019 #40
You can subscribe to HBO Now straight from HBO or get it through yellowdogintexas Jan 2019 #44
Last fall I cut the cord using Roku and a variety of streaming choices csziggy Jan 2019 #35
Very informative, thanks! UTUSN Jan 2019 #37
Thank you, csziggy for you great summary of all those content providers. KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #61
I still have an early ROKU for my analog tv. Do they have an adapter for the newer digital outputs keithbvadu2 Jan 2019 #36
As you can see, one of our fantastic DUers is sure to know and fill us in!1 UTUSN Jan 2019 #38
Yes! The newer ones that work with the digital TV have yellowdogintexas Jan 2019 #45
Yes. I have one with DirectvNOW which only needs an internet connection. lunatica Jan 2019 #47
Yes, it's called an HDMI-to-analog composite converter. KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #49
Thanks... will look into the Express+ keithbvadu2 Jan 2019 #59
Free - MSNBC, CNN, BBC mysteryowl Jan 2019 #39
Hear me out. lunatica Jan 2019 #46
Do they provide the internet service and WIFI modem in that price? KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #50
No they don't provide the internet yet, but lunatica Jan 2019 #51
Lunitica, I just want to be sure everyone here understands... KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #52
***UPDATE*** Talked to my internet provider: Current speed 9.3 download; 1.2 upload UTUSN Jan 2019 #55
Sounds like you'll be in good shape, UTUSN. KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #60
***UPDATE*** with the Amazon stick, called Customer Support, they did a factory reset UTUSN Jan 2019 #68
I'd be chafed if my combined internet / TV / cellphone bills exceeded $100 a month. hunter Jan 2019 #69
Thank you, Hunter. That's what I'm looking for, simple as possible. KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #70
We're using a $49 DVD player my wife bought that has Netflix built-in. hunter Jan 2019 #72
I went from DirecTV to DirecTV Now, cut my bill by $110... Dennis Donovan Jan 2019 #53
I'm leaning toward DirecTV Now myself Zorro Jan 2019 #57
I like YouTubeTV Auggie Jan 2019 #58
3-wire 15 amp standard cord cap but we don't do cable (since 1995)! akraven Jan 2019 #66
Thanks, but I'm a total low-tech. "3-wire etc" mean nothing to me. UTUSN Jan 2019 #67
We use Sony's Playstation Vue. We have 4 TV's, 2 with a Roku stick and 2 with Amazon's Firestick. retread Jan 2019 #71
I just recently took this step. I have Sling Blue with all the channels you mention except CSPAN. Claritie Pixie Jan 2019 #73
UTUSN, I cut Comcast ploppy Jan 2019 #74
Self deleting, to post a Results thread: Whole O.P. here: UTUSN Jan 2019 #75
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