How to Program a Digital Converter Box

by Maya Austen

Beyond the initial setup process of hooking up your digital converter box to your TV and VCR or DVD recorder (if applicable), you also need to program your converter to pick up your local TV channels. This is called a "channel scan." While the procedure is simple, failure to do it will result in your not being able to view your local channels, even if your box is connected to your TV.

Step 1

Confirm that your digital converter box is properly connected to your TV. The coaxial cable from your antenna should be screwed into the RF In port on your digital converter box (generally labeled "Ant. In"). The output from your digital converter box runs to the corresponding input port on your TV; or to the corresponding input port on your VCR or DVD recorder if you're using one. If you are using a VCR or DVD recorder, the output from this device runs to the corresponding input on your TV.

Step 2

Turn on your TV and digital converter box.

Step 3

Press the "Menu" button on your digital converter box's remote. Use the arrow buttons on the remote to locate and highlight the "Channel Scan" option. Press the Select button on your converter box remote. The Select button may be labeled "Enter," "OK" or something similar.

Step 4

Wait for the channel scan to be complete. It may take a minute or more. You should see a meter on your TV screen indicating what percentage of the channel scan has been completed. When you reach 100 percent, the scan is done.

Push the Channel Up or Channel Down button on your converter box remote to flip through the channels now programmed into the box. If you find that some of your local stations are missing. reposition your TV antenna and repeat steps 3 through 5.


  • If, when you run your channel scan, you find that you are not picking up your local channels, and repeated attempts at repositioning your TV antenna don't solve the problem, you may need to invest in a higher-quality indoor antenna, or possibly an outdoor antenna. When channel scan fails to pick up some of your local TV channels, it means that the signal reception for those missing channels is too weak.


About the Author

Maya Austen began freelance writing in 2009. She has written for many online publications on a wide variety of topics ranging from physical fitness to amateur astronomy. She's also an author and e-book publisher. Austen has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from the New England Institute of Art and currently lives in Boston, Mass.

More Articles