Home > Etown Systems > Cable Television > Comcast Conversion - Cable Television

Comcast Conversion - Cable Television
Information about the Comcast addition of HD channels.

Elizabethtown College recently underwent a cable conversion. We now have HD Cable TV service provided by Comcast in all of the residence halls, lounges, and classrooms with TVs. HD Cable TV service requires a QAM (Quadrature Amplitude Modulation) digital tuner. QAM is a format cable providers use to transmit and  encode digital cable channels. Most major brand televisions manufactured after 2006 have a built-in QAM tuner. Older analog televisions will not be compatible.

Below is a list of brands that may be incompatible. Check your owner's manual or follow the instructions below to determine if your television is QAM compatible. 

  • Apex
  • Dynex
  • Element
  • Emerson
  • Haier
  • Insignia
  • RCA
  • Seiki
  • Sylvania
  • Westinghouse

To determine if you have a QAM compatible TV, you can try several methods:


Method 1:

Check your owner's manual which can usually be found online by googling your brand and model of TV followed by "user manual" or "owner's manual."

  • An owner's manual for a TV with a QAM tuner might say “Built in digital tuner (ATSC/Clear QAM)” or “NTSC/QAM”.
  • An owner's manual for a TV without a QAM tuner might say “ATSC/NTSC tuner” with no mention of QAM anywhere in the manual. (This is not always an indication of that it does not have a QAM tuner.)

Method 2:

Check if your remote has either the “.” or “-” symbol or if your TV is able to display channels such as 7.2 or 7-2, it likely has a QAM tuner. Try attaching the coaxial cable, plugging in your television, then typing in "10-7". If the television connects to a channel, then you have QAM.

    Method 3:

If that does not automatically connect, then you may need to try performing an auto-scan for channels. To auto scan, check your owner's manual for instructions. In general, the following instructions may work:

  • Press the “Home” or “Menu” button on your remote to access your TV's menu.
  • Select “Setup” or “Settings”
  • Select “Channel”
  • Select “Auto Tuning” or “Auto Program”
  • Make sure you are scanning “Cable” or “DTV” signals NOT "antenna" or "air" channels. 
  • Select “Start” or "Run" and allow time for the scan to complete. This make take a few minutes as the TV searches for available channels. 

        Method 4:

If an channel scan does not work, double check cables and connections to ensure that is not the problem. All cables should connect easily and be
hand tightened. Do not use tools to tighten coaxial cables! Older cables may need to be replaced. If you do replace any cables, perform a channel scan again.

Method 5:

If none of the above fixes your problem, or if your television is not QAM compatible, you may need to purchase a digital set-top converter. These converter boxes resemble old cable boxes and can cost anywhere from $30 to $50 dollars. Your other option is to purchase a new TV that is QAM compatible.
As always, check your owner's manual to determine if your model is compatible first. We advise you to confirm if a television is compatible with QAM before purchasing it.

If you think your television is QAM compatible, and you cannot access HD channels, contact ITS at x3333 or visit Nicarry 125 to discuss your options. You may need to contact Comcast to troubleshoot.


Related Articles