Ratings and Reviews

Customer Reviews for RCA RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

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RCA RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Purchase a digital converter box for $49.87 (with coupon, $9.87*) Digital converter boxes receive over-the-air digital TV broadcasts for viewing on TVs that do not have built-in digital tuners. If you wish to keep using your analog TV set, you must purchase a digital converter box. Digital converter boxes are available at Wal-Mart stores nationwide. For additional information and to apply for digital converter box coupons, visit www.dtv2009.gov or call 1-888-DTV-2009.
Average Customer Rating:
3.485 out of 5
3.5
 out of 
5
(196 Reviews) 196
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating SnapshotOverall Rating Totals
5 stars
75
4 stars
48
3 stars
10
2 stars
23
1 star
40
Customer Recommendation63%123 out of 196reviewers would recommend this product to a friend.
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating SnapshotOverall Rating Totals
5 stars
75
4 stars
48
3 stars
10
2 stars
23
1 star
40
Customer Reviews
Review 1 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Magnavox vs. RCA

05/24/2008
By ,
San Fernando Valley
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I bought two different brands - Magnavox & RCA . I read conflicting reviews and wanted to see for myself which I preferred. Despite having to return a defective RCA, it turned out to be my preference. The RCA remote is designed so you can control your TV set as well, a function completely missing on the Magnavox. The RCA is smaller and lighter weight (a factor that mislead me to initially think the Magnavox must be "better"). The RCA is designed to lay flat or stand on end, and it has a very usable guide for signal strength that can help you position your antenna for maximum reception. I am also inclined to believe the RCA has a stronger tuner because in my area (Los Angeles) Channel 11 is weak. The Magnavox shows "no signal" at all, but the RCA does bring it in even though it is weak and breaks up.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:65 or older
Gender:Male
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+31points
Review 2 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

This is it!

11/28/2008
By ,
Lancaster, OH
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Ok, here's the scoop.. When I bought this and brought it home I just hooked it straight up to my standard rabit ears and got 8 channels at about 30% but it was so clear it was like having cable and no snow. These were the same 8 channels I originally got, which after typing "full-power broadcast television stations" into a search engine I found a list of stations currently broadcasting in DTV and it said there were only 8 in my area, so I didn't feel bad, but I wanted more. I had a large herring bone antenna on the outside of my house, so I hooked into it and really saw no difference, I then read online about a small hdtv antenna that made the world of difference, it is sold at Walmart it is the (Philips MANT940 Indoor/Outdoor HDTV Antenna) and Walmart sells it cheaper than the compettitors. I brought it home and hooked it up in combination and It increased my signal to 80% and I now get 11 dtv channels dispite the fact that there are only 8 in my area. This box brings in the best clarity yet, and I am excited to see more. Do a scan for new channels regularly as there are more stations switching over between now and February.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:25 - 34
Gender:Male
Ownership:2 - 7 weeks
Usage:Every day
+25points
Review 3 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

needs more work,not enough planning

12/17/2008
By ,
kentucky
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Got the coupon bought the Magnavox.Only one Walmart had.Really easy setup.Before I hooked up the box,got 10 stations,7 were clear.After the box was hooked up,got 4 stations.They were as clear as HD satellite tv.But could not pick up anything else.Made phone calls.Was told too get a better antenna,signal was not strong enough.Purchased a $70 better and stronger antenna.Picked up one more station,total of 5.Took box off,hooked up $70 antenna I purchased,now all 10 stations are clear,and picked up 3 more,which are not very clear.I guess I will have great reception on 10 to 13 stations until Feb 2009.After that,maybe 4 to 5 stations.Guess will have too add another reciever on the dish too get tv in my garage.At least I don't have much money in the box.I don't think there was enough research and planning that went into this dtv converter box deal.Or maybe the box are not setup right too recieve these signals.As they say,something new always takes time too perfect.I just hope it doesn't take 20 years.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Recommends this product? No
Age:35 - 44
Gender:Male
Ownership:2 - 7 weeks
Usage:Every few days
+1point
Review 4 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

AWESOME!!

03/22/2008
By ,
hammond, wi
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
We got our $40 coupons in the mail and headed straight to walmart. Online walmart said the magnavox was available in stores but the rca model was not (and it isn't availalbe online either). We really wanted the rca model, but decided the other would be ok. To our suprise, our Walmart ONLY had the RCA model. We were anxious to get it home. We hooked it up and nothing. I tried my best to find troubleshooting info online. No luck. Then I read someone's review that told me what to do. I had the "no signal" box on my screen. I then pressed the menu button and continued the set up.
WOW!! Every channel is perfectly clear!! We used to get in only about six channels. Now we have about 19 of them.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:25 - 34
Gender:Female
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+35points
Review 5 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Definitely worth the $

03/27/2008
By ,
Southcentral Kansas
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Definitely worth the money if you use your government coupon! Big improvement in picture and sound quality with a digital signal! My favorite feature is being able to see the name of the program, how long it lasts, rating, program description, current time, and station name...it's like having those features of digital cable...but for free! We even picked up 3 additional digital channels that we didn't have before! I only have a couple of suggested improvements- there is a slight delay (black screen) when changing channels, and it takes a second or so for the program description/information to display....until then it says "No Title". Remote control is simple and easy to use.....but wish it had VCR controls. Signal strength seems fine, and I live 50 miles from most transmitters. Easy to set up. One thing to be aware of....if you have a VCR, this unit can send a digital signal to both your TV and VCR (if connected correctly), but since it's a single tuner, you can't record a show and watch a different one at the same time....because you have only 1 digital tuner. To get around that, I used a splitter ("Y") coming out of the wall's antenna cable. One cable goes to the converter box (to view digital TV) and one cable goes to the VCR. Set up this way, the VCR uses its tuner and still only gets an analog signal...but at least we can watch TV (digital) while recording another show on the VCR (analog). I guess I'll just wait until Feb. '09 to replace my VCR with a digital recorder with a built-in digital tuner. This is a simple converter box, but for $10 after the coupon, I can't expect a ton of features. I would definitely purchase this converter box again.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:35 - 44
Gender:Male
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+41points
Review 6 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Setup was confusing

04/12/2008
By ,
Austin TX
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
I would like to thank the reviewer who suggested that I bypass the instructions and press the menu button. The instructions are very misleading and there is not any information for troubleshooting on the RCA website. Overall I think the converter box works great; the picture comes in clear, no more fuzzy pictures. Not bad for $10.
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:45 - 54
Gender:Female
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+35points
Review 7 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Good converter box, little-known DTV facts/tips

04/28/2008
By ,
Denver, CO
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Got my government coupons and purchased 2 of these in early April. I have a big digital TV in my main room and the converters were for 13" portable tv's in other rooms. The converters were easy to set up and work fine on both tv's, the universal remotes could be programmed to work one of the portable tv's but not the other. I have an amplified roof antenna so I get good signals on all our digital channels, but 2 of the channels that I get on the digital tv don't tune in through the converter box - the fault of the tv stations because their digital signals aren't formatted correctly so the converter can't convert them back to analog. The stations that do come in, picture quality is nearly equal to that of the digital tv. The channel guide (banner at the top of the screen) when you tune to a channel displays a signal strength meter at the lower left with the program name, time, rating (if available) and what's on next after that show, a previous review here said it doesn't display program descriptions but it does - press the info button once to bring up the channel banner, press it a 2nd time and another box appears below the banner with the program description if it's available (this was not included in the owner's manual). Some stations don't include the descriptions, or if the signal is too weak to produce a picture the box will say 'no description'.
Converter boxes can become erractic when the signals get weak or momentarily disappear, a common occurrence with digital signals that is the fault of the tv station sending a weak or inconsistent signal and not the converter box. 99% of digital stations broadcast their signals at UHF frequencies, since a digital signal has to be stronger to produce it's great picture it's a weaker signal than analog signals are - particularly the VHF frequencies (channels 2 to 13) which people may have problems receiving in digital that they never had with analog. The FCC acknowledges that after the digital switchover tv's will likely not receive all the channels they got before in analog, if that happens to you don't curse the digital equipment - it's a limitation of the digital technology, or your local stations broadcasting weak or inconsistent digital signals. A good antenna is more necessary to get the most digital channels in your area than it was to get analog channels, roof antennas do the best job.
This converter box doesn't have a signal pass-through, my portable tv's fortunately have audio video (AV) jacks and I connected the converter boxes that way so I can watch the digital channels on the tv's video channel and still watch the analog channels on their regular channels with no interference from the converter box. It's necessary to connect the converter boxes this way because when the digital switchover occurs next February there will still be analog channels on the air. Only the full-power stations go all digital, the network affiliated and larger independent stations that are mostly on the VHF band (channels 2 to 13) and some on the UHF band (channels 14 to 69). The low power stations, all on the UHF band, will continue to broadcast in analog as their conversion date to digital hasn't been set yet. Approximately 40% of the stations in most TV markets are full-power and 60% are low-power, so most of your stations will remain analog - stations you probably don't watch very much or have trouble receiving, or don't even know you have in your area. Scan your analog tv dial to see how many there are, most of these channels aren't listed in your local tv listings.
If your analog tv doesn't have AV jacks you'll need to get an inexpensive RF/video converter, plug the AV output cables from the digital converter box into the RF converter and it connects to your tv's coaxial input and you can watch the digital channels from the converter box on channel 3 or 4. To connect the converter to your tv's AV jacks you'll need a signal splitter with 2 outputs and another small coaxial cable. Connect the antenna input to the splitter input connecter, 1 output goes to the converter box's antenna input and the other output to the tv's coaxial jack. AV cables go from the converter box's audio and video out jacks to the tv's audio and video in jacks, and you're all set.
Product Attributes:
Value
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:45 - 54
Gender:Male
Ownership:2 - 7 weeks
Usage:Every day
+82points
Review 8 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

A good product

05/07/2008
By ,
Long Beach, Ca.
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
I bought the RCA converter after reading the reviews on all the converters. After getting my government discount card I checked for the best prices for this product. Walmart was the best.
The setup was quite simple and worked right off. I received many more channels than before and no longer get a ghost image. About the only thing I find bad is when I switch from full screen to wide screen I have to fool around a bit to get it to switch--a minor problem. The picture quality is excellent. I especially like the "info" button where I can see what is on next.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:65 or older
Gender:Male
Ownership:2 - 7 weeks
Usage:Every day
+12points
Review 9 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Excellent!

02/18/2008
By ,
St. Louis, MO
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I would recommend this to all my friends and family, and everyone who asked me about the "Switch To Digital"! I bought the product a few days ago and it meets beyond my expectations. It has a Program Guide it works with muticast. In fact until I bought the converter box I didn't know what i was missing out on...I had 5 other channels I didn't know about because they were broadcast in DT. So when I connected to the set to the television, I was surprised to say the least. This product has my great approval. If you are planning to switch...don't be caught in the dark. The switch is official on February 17, 2009, but with the technology now available why wait? I couldn't wait and im glad that I purchased such a wonderful product.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:14 - 18
Gender:Male
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+6points
Review 10 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Drops Sound

06/06/2009
By ,
Colorado Springs
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
We have two of these boxes and they will be going back. We got them because even though we have an HDTV, we have the older version of TIVO that requires a converter for digital recording. With the first box, it dropped all of the sound for PBS, then dropped the sound for all other channels. We changed it for the other box we had on an older TV. Now I noticed that on specific channels, only the voice portion of the sound was gone - all background and background music sound was still there. The dialogue was gone! Kinda hard to watch a show with no voices. I even called my local channel that it happened on first to see if they had a problem. But I figured out that it was the converter box. I have to turn it on and off once a day to get it to work right. We leave it on all of the time so that we can record shows when we aren't around. Sorta the point of having a recorder isn't it? So these boxes are going back and we'll try another brand. We're not happy at all!
Product Attributes:
Value
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Meets Expectations
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Recommends this product? No
Age:45 - 54
Gender:Female
Ownership:2 - 3 months
Usage:Every day
0points
Review 11 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Magnificent!

09/18/2008
By ,
Nashville, TN
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I bought this thing yesterday, and am highly pleased with the results. The picture is crystal clear, and I get about 22 channels as opposed to the six I got without it. Setup was easy, for the most part; while the box itself was no bother, getting that great bulky tv scooted around so I could get at the back of it was a minor annoyance, and finding out that I could have either the vcr or the dvd player but not both slightly aggravates. I'll sort that out at length, though... the signal from the rabbit ears isn't as strong as I'd like, either, but that too will be improved over time. The thing is, I got to watch Leno last night with a perfect picture, something that hasn't happened in months.
The best part is that I no longer have to have two tvs, one for the video playback and one for regular reception. This box hooked in directly through the RCA A/V jacks. The damaged coax connector on my tv isn't a problem anymore. And once I get a better antenna like the RCA Smart Antenna, I'll get a much better signal and more channels.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:45 - 54
Gender:Male
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
0points
Review 12 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Disappointed

02/24/2009
By
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
I purchased this box about 60 days ago after receiving my coupon so it only cost me around $11. That was the only good thing about the whole experience. First of all, they have been talking about this DTV switch for over a year now and how all you need to do is buy this box and you will be able to watch all of the channels on "regular" tv. Nobody bothered to mention that you will also have to purchase an antenna for your t.v. I was able to tune into channels without an antenna before I bought this box. I had to go out and buy an antenna, then half of the time I still only get certain channels and I end up messing with the antenna signal strength option to try to tune into a station more than I actually watch t.v. Then a couple of days ago I turned my t.v. on and the screen was frozen. I looked at the box and it was completely dead. No power at all. I have no idea what happened but at this point I am now going to have to buy another box because by law we all have to switch so needless to say I will not be buying the RCA model.
Product Attributes:
Value
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Meets Expectations
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Recommends this product? No
0points
Review 13 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Does not perform to expectation

03/28/2008
By ,
Falcon, Colorado
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
a FAIR value for less than $15 after DTV discount.
Nice features in a small remote...but difficult to program to YOUR TV mfg since model numbers don't match up and the Large Channel button is the good feature for big fingers... The AutoScan channel feature needs to be RUN more than one would expect. Keypad does NOT have a channel recall feature. ALL HD channels will be mapped into a SD - standard density video display... very sharp picture. It can be vertically mounted ON the side of your TV. Shortcomming is the Digital schedule ONLY is the NEXT program after the current program in the schedule - NOT a {EPG} Electronic Program Guide feature which Digital TV provides.
SIMPLE YES but with a lot of limitation...
I would side to the Magnavox - TB100MW9 converter since ALL the buttons function on the remote control. The Channel Recall and EPG ... WORKS an the cannels Auto rescan on their own.
Product Attributes:
Value
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Meets Expectations
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Recommends this product? No
Age:55 - 64
Gender:Male
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+1point
Review 14 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Breaks after a month

06/30/2009
By ,
California
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Great product at first, then after about 3 weeks of use power shut off and won't come back on. Friend bought one at the same time, and almost to the hour, same thing happened to her converter box. Took it back to Walmart, not covered under warranty because bought when coupons first came out, even though not used until now. They had several under counter that were returned for same thing. Too many returns for this product that is so new.
Product Attributes:
Value
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Meets Expectations
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Recommends this product? No
Age:45 - 54
Gender:Female
Ownership:5 - 6 months
Usage:Every day
+8points
Review 15 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Excellent, Excellent, Excellent!

04/11/2008
By ,
Central Illinois
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
My $40 coupons arrived in the mail the other day and I stopped by on my way home and picked up 1 of these models. I also picked up one of the cheapest rabbit ears antenna that was available (I paid $10 for them). When I got home (we live in a rural community) it took about 15 minutes to get it setup and then another couple of minutes for it to do a channel search. I was amazed at the number of channels that it found, including 7+ channels from locations more than 35 miles away. The picture quality was incredible and to have program descriptions was an added bonus. In the setup menu there is even a signal meter that you can use to find the best possible position of your anntenna. Plus there are other built in features that make this unit an incredible value, even better with the DTV-coupon. Forget about waiting for the ever-delayed Echostar model, run out and pick up this RCA box now!
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+1point
Review 16 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

RCA review

04/05/2008
By ,
Fresno, CA
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
I received two debit cards for the purchase of a converter box. Since my Walmart had two brands I decided to purchase one of each to see if there was a difference. There is. The rca reception breaks up freguently while the magnavox reception is consistently good. I will be recommending the magnavox.
Product Attributes:
Value
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Meets Expectations
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Recommends this product? No
Age:55 - 64
Gender:Male
Ownership:2 - 7 weeks
Usage:Every day
+5points
Review 17 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

03/30/2008
By ,
Chandler, AZ
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I located and purchased the RCA converter box after reading reviews on both the RCA and Magnovox models.
The box is working great since I only expected the basic performance. After I hooked up the unit, I got the no antenna/signal strength error message on the screen. The instructions from the Quick Start Guide were not the best because it did not guide us from there to the Menu and Setting Up screens. Which would lead one to believe the set was not working. After scanning and tuning in all the available channels, we now can select a channel and start viewing.
The remote lets you program to the RF frequency of the TV set and use the same remote to power on/off and volume up/down of your TV set.
I looked for a digital tuner and I got one at the best price today. For my needs, this is a simple but effective product. Two thumbs up!!
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:45 - 54
Gender:Male
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+2points
Review 18 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Walmart Comes Through

04/30/2008
By ,
Portage, IN
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
I wish to thank the store Associate who acted as my advocate and brought my request to the Store Manager at the Portage, IN store. I got a call that night and they was going to special order the RCA converter from a store in Colorado. I did not know that the nation was basically divided in half. West Side got RCA's and the East Side, which is my zone, got the Motorola’s. Reasoning is the RCA and Motorola Company could not supply Wal-Mart’s supply needs. No doubt both units are great products, but the RCA offered better compatibility with my two older TV's and Converter. The Motorola converter remote does not handle our TV on/off or volume control as the RCA can. Again, big thanks for the extra effort. As far as the RCA converter goes. I have had it for about one week and setup was easy. When it was turned on. All can say is WOW. The digital picture was stunning. I purchased the boom antenna through the Wal-Mart site to store several months’ back. The combination of the RCA converter with the outdoor antenna is providing me 50 - 60% signal strength. Another gain was going from 10 analog to 30 digital channels in the Chicago area broadcast area. Many friends have come over and are shocked at the reception. They are seriously reconsidering keeping the expensive cable or satellite systems.
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:55 - 64
Gender:Male
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+4points
Review 19 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

Very Happy With It

04/04/2008
By ,
Clearfield, UT
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Not sure why others are disappointed. Mine works great connected to a 20 year old tv and rooftop antenna! The tv has no remote and uses the old rotating channel change knob(remember those??); so this converter now lets me change channels with it's remote control. Before, I could only get about 9 over-the-air channels. The antenna strength screen accessed from the menu on remote says I am getting about 19% reception. Even at that "low" reception strength, I now get 24 channels and they are all crystal clear! I will be using my 2nd government coupon to get another one of these. It'll "update" another tv in the basement so it too will get more channels and rival the picture I get with the other tv's connected to the satellite system. Great product, RCA!!
Product Attributes:
Value
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Recommends this product? Yes
Age:45 - 54
Gender:Male
Ownership:1 week or less
Usage:Every day
+3points
Review 20 for RCA Digital TV Converter Box, DTA800

RCA DTA800B - Has a BIG Drawback

04/24/2008
By
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
All-in-all for the price the little box works pretty good - so far - and I'd recommend it - but with the following reservation. There is one BIG drawback. Once you scan for all available channels there is no way to manually add or delete channels. If for some reason it does not pick up and store a channel - as happened to me many times - scan again and again until it grabs and stores it. No manual entry for channels is provided. And after scanning - if you have channels available you would just as soon not have (such as multiple ABC, NBC, PBS etc. channels from different locations) - there is no way to delete those you don't want. other "cheap" boxes have this feature - consider this carefully as you purchase.
Recommends this product? Yes
+3points
1-20 of 196 total reviews
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