CHOICE guide to digital TV

What will it mean for you?
 
Learn more
 
 
 
 
 

01 .Digital TV

In its latest announcement about digital TV the Federal Government decreed that analogue TV will be switched off before the end of 2013.

This means your normal analogue TV will go blank if you haven’t invested in a set-top-box by that time.

So, what is digital TV and why have it? 

Video: Digital TV switch - what you need to know.

With broadcasts going digital between now and 2013, Chris Ruggles tells you what you need to know about the DTV switchover.


What is it?

Digital is just another way of transmitting content to your TV. It uses technology that has a few benefits over the analogue system:

  • No interference - It eliminates ghosting and snowy effects caused by interference.
  • Better quality - It can provide very high-quality image and sound (see Standard or high definition?).
  • More channels - Because it’s a more efficient broadcasting mechanism, it allows broadcasters to squeeze more channels into the same space.

How do I get it?

There’s two ways to get digital TV in your living room:

Digital set-top box

The cheapest way to go digital is to keep your current TV (probably a traditional cathode ray tube, CRT) and attach a digital set-top box between it and your aerial. In most cases a new aerial isn’t needed, but some older aerials may need replacing.

The set-top box acts as the tuner (the part that receives the signal for all the channels) for your TV set and you use its remote to change channels, etc. They cost anything from around $50 to $200, depending on the brand and whether you choose a standard (SD) or high-definition (HD) model (see Standard or high definition?).

You can also get set-top boxes with a built in hard drive or DVD writer (see Recording digital TV).

Integrated digital TV

The more expensive option is to buy an integrated digital TV set (IDTV). Basically, this is just a TV with a digital set-top box/tuner built-in. The advantage is that you don’t have the extra remote and menu system to learn and it’s all-in-one, so there’s less clutter.

What can I get now?

As well as the digital broadcast of all the analogue free-to-air channels, you’ll also get a few extras if you go digital now:

  • ABC 2 – offers a mix of new and archival content as well as ABC main channel repeats. ABC3 is mainly children's programs and currently has limited viewing times. ABC24 is based around news and current affairs.
  • SBS World News Channels – broadcasts foreign language content.
  • Extra channels such as community TV in some regions, Australian Christian Channel, Parliament channel and a home shopping channel.
  • Four digital radio channels – ABC’s Dig Radio and Dig Jazz and two SBS multilingual radio services.
  • ONE HD and ONE SD which are produced by the TEN Network and are predominantly sports channels.
  • 7TWO is largely movies and kids programs, 7MATE is a bit blokey and in HD only at present. 
  • Nine's GO! is aimed at a younger audience. GEM is supposedly for the more sophisticated viewer and in HD only at present.
 
 

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]]>
Diet and exerciseThu, 12 Nov 2009 09:48:00 GMT
CHOICE - Diet and exercise http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise.aspxIndependent and trusted tests, user trials and investigations of fitness equipment, nutrition and weight loss from CHOICE Australia. Copyright 2014 www.choice.com.auen-au http://www.choice.com.au/img/logo_choice.gif www.choice.com.au http://www.choice.com.auWed, 01 Oct 2014 04:02:31 GMTFood and healthHome exercise equipment review http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/infomercial-exercise-equipment.aspx

CHOICE reviews exercise equipment advertised on TV, including Pilates Power Gym, Total Gym XLS, Ab Coaster and more. Experts rate how useful, safe and fun they are.

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Diet and exerciseTue, 19 Aug 2014 13:02:00 GMT
Do diet detox products work? http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/nutrition/do-diet-detox-products-work.aspx

We ask the experts just how well diet detox products work when it comes to removing toxins and getting healthy.

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Diet and exerciseWed, 09 Apr 2014 17:25:00 GMT
How to get fit and lose weight with apps and gadgets http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/How-to-get-fit-and-lose-weight-with-apps-and-gadgets.aspx

Will a shiny new wearable fitness tracker or smartphone app help keep you on track with your health goals?

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Diet and exerciseWed, 05 Mar 2014 10:43:00 GMT
Fitness watches home test http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/Fitness-watches.aspx

The very athletic Davies family give us a rundown on a Garmin Forerunner, Magellan Switch, Polar and Tom Tom multi-sport fitness watches.

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Diet and exerciseWed, 19 Feb 2014 14:48:00 GMT
Online diet programs http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/online-diets.aspx

CHOICE compares five popular online weight loss programs: the Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation, the Biggest Loser Club, SureSlim, Weight Watchers, and the Ashy Bines Bikini Body Challenge.

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Diet and exerciseWed, 02 Oct 2013 16:40:00 GMT
First look: Golfsense 3D golf sensor http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/Golfsense-first-look.aspx

See your golf swing on your smart device as well as speed, tempo and angle information to help find out what to fix and what to keep for a more repeatable swing.

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Diet and exerciseWed, 04 Sep 2013 16:54:00 GMT
Fitness à la carte http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/fitness-and-gyms/New-ways-of-working-out.aspx

Gyms are diversifying to provide 24-hour access, fast workouts and specific types of workout, like CrossFit. Which one is right for you?

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Diet and exerciseWed, 14 Aug 2013 12:39:00 GMT
Fitbit One first look http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/fitbit-one-first-look.aspx

Find out which additional features set the Fitbit One apart from its predecessor and whether it's a must-have gadget.

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Diet and exerciseFri, 03 May 2013 16:04:00 GMT
What makes you fat? http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/What-makes-you-fat.aspx

The latest science suggests there's more to the recent obesity epidemic than too much food and too little exercise.

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Diet and exerciseFri, 28 Sep 2012 14:46:00 GMT
Fitbit first look http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/fitbit-first-look.aspx

We take a look at the Fitbit Ultra, which helps you track your walks and runs, as well as calories burned.

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Diet and exerciseMon, 13 Aug 2012 17:47:00 GMT
Exercise experts http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/fitness-and-gyms/exercise-experts.aspx

We take a look at the main types of fitness professionals, and what to look for when choosing one.

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Diet and exerciseMon, 23 Jul 2012 09:34:00 GMT
Diet clinic shadow shop http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/diet-clinic-shadow-shop.aspx

We put diet programs from Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, Cohen's Lifestyle Clinic, and Weight Control Doctor under the microscope.

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Diet and exerciseTue, 06 Mar 2012 17:21:00 GMT
Does compression sportswear work? http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/compression-sports-wear.aspx

Compression sportswear is said to improve performance and and recovery. CHOICE investigates the evidence for these claims.

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Diet and exerciseWed, 09 Nov 2011 14:35:00 GMT
SensaSlim puts TGA on hold http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/sensaslim-sues-ken-harvey.aspx

A behind-the-scenes look at the defamation lawsuit by SensaSlim against consumer-health advocate Dr Ken Harvey reveals a deep flaw in TGA regulations.

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Diet and exerciseTue, 21 Jun 2011 12:15:00 GMT
Garmin Approach S1 GPS Golf watch http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/gps-golf-watch.aspx

The Garmin Approach S1 Golf GPS watch could help shave some strokes off your handicap as well as speed up your play.

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Diet and exerciseWed, 15 Jun 2011 15:28:00 GMT
Weight loss pills http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/weight-loss-pills.aspx

We look at the so-called "active ingredients" in weight loss pills to see if they live up to their claims.

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Diet and exerciseMon, 02 May 2011 11:04:00 GMT
Weight loss myths http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/weight-loss-myths.aspx

CHOICE looks at problematic myths and misconceptions, as identified by our in-house experts and a survey of professionals.

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Diet and exerciseThu, 20 Jan 2011 14:49:00 GMT
CHOICE summer guide http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/choice-summer-guide.aspx

We've put together the CHOICE summer guide to help you get the best start to 2011.

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Diet and exerciseThu, 20 Jan 2011 13:22:00 GMT
Stay slim strategies http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/stay-slim-strategies.aspx

Are there key eating and exercise strategies that are trademarks of the slim? Learn the secrets of those who never get fat.

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Diet and exerciseTue, 22 Jun 2010 10:40:00 GMT
Gastric banding http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/weight-loss-surgery.aspx

Gastric banding is promoted as a safe, easy and effective way for obese people to lose weight. CHOICE investigates the claims.

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Diet and exerciseTue, 19 Jan 2010 17:06:00 GMT
Body fat scales reviews http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/body-fat-scales-review-and-compare.aspx

We tested 12 bathroom scales that measure body fat percentage as well as weight. But can they make you appear healthier than you really are?

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Diet and exerciseThu, 10 Dec 2009 11:36:00 GMT
Home gym on a shoestring http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/cheap-home-gym.aspx

Think you need lots of space and money to set up an effective home gym? CHOICE's shopping list of equipment comes in at about $100.

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Diet and exerciseWed, 25 Nov 2009 09:37:00 GMT
Heart rate monitor reviews http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/heart-rate-monitors review and compare.aspx

Choice tested 19 heart rate monitors for ease of use and performance, priced between $30 and $399.

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Diet and exerciseThu, 12 Nov 2009 09:48:00 GMT
CHOICE - Diet and exercise http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise.aspxIndependent and trusted tests, user trials and investigations of fitness equipment, nutrition and weight loss from CHOICE Australia. Copyright 2014 www.choice.com.auen-au http://www.choice.com.au/img/logo_choice.gif www.choice.com.au http://www.choice.com.auWed, 01 Oct 2014 04:02:31 GMTFood and healthHome exercise equipment review http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/infomercial-exercise-equipment.aspx

CHOICE reviews exercise equipment advertised on TV, including Pilates Power Gym, Total Gym XLS, Ab Coaster and more. Experts rate how useful, safe and fun they are.

]]>
Diet and exerciseTue, 19 Aug 2014 13:02:00 GMT
Do diet detox products work? http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/nutrition/do-diet-detox-products-work.aspx

We ask the experts just how well diet detox products work when it comes to removing toxins and getting healthy.

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 09 Apr 2014 17:25:00 GMT
How to get fit and lose weight with apps and gadgets http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/How-to-get-fit-and-lose-weight-with-apps-and-gadgets.aspx

Will a shiny new wearable fitness tracker or smartphone app help keep you on track with your health goals?

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 05 Mar 2014 10:43:00 GMT
Fitness watches home test http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/Fitness-watches.aspx

The very athletic Davies family give us a rundown on a Garmin Forerunner, Magellan Switch, Polar and Tom Tom multi-sport fitness watches.

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 19 Feb 2014 14:48:00 GMT
Online diet programs http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/online-diets.aspx

CHOICE compares five popular online weight loss programs: the Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation, the Biggest Loser Club, SureSlim, Weight Watchers, and the Ashy Bines Bikini Body Challenge.

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 02 Oct 2013 16:40:00 GMT
First look: Golfsense 3D golf sensor http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/Golfsense-first-look.aspx

See your golf swing on your smart device as well as speed, tempo and angle information to help find out what to fix and what to keep for a more repeatable swing.

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 04 Sep 2013 16:54:00 GMT
Fitness à la carte http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/fitness-and-gyms/New-ways-of-working-out.aspx

Gyms are diversifying to provide 24-hour access, fast workouts and specific types of workout, like CrossFit. Which one is right for you?

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 14 Aug 2013 12:39:00 GMT
Fitbit One first look http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/fitbit-one-first-look.aspx

Find out which additional features set the Fitbit One apart from its predecessor and whether it's a must-have gadget.

]]>
Diet and exerciseFri, 03 May 2013 16:04:00 GMT
What makes you fat? http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/What-makes-you-fat.aspx

The latest science suggests there's more to the recent obesity epidemic than too much food and too little exercise.

]]>
Diet and exerciseFri, 28 Sep 2012 14:46:00 GMT
Fitbit first look http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/fitbit-first-look.aspx

We take a look at the Fitbit Ultra, which helps you track your walks and runs, as well as calories burned.

]]>
Diet and exerciseMon, 13 Aug 2012 17:47:00 GMT
Exercise experts http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/fitness-and-gyms/exercise-experts.aspx

We take a look at the main types of fitness professionals, and what to look for when choosing one.

]]>
Diet and exerciseMon, 23 Jul 2012 09:34:00 GMT
Diet clinic shadow shop http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/diet-clinic-shadow-shop.aspx

We put diet programs from Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, Cohen's Lifestyle Clinic, and Weight Control Doctor under the microscope.

]]>
Diet and exerciseTue, 06 Mar 2012 17:21:00 GMT
Does compression sportswear work? http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/compression-sports-wear.aspx

Compression sportswear is said to improve performance and and recovery. CHOICE investigates the evidence for these claims.

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 09 Nov 2011 14:35:00 GMT
SensaSlim puts TGA on hold http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/sensaslim-sues-ken-harvey.aspx

A behind-the-scenes look at the defamation lawsuit by SensaSlim against consumer-health advocate Dr Ken Harvey reveals a deep flaw in TGA regulations.

]]>
Diet and exerciseTue, 21 Jun 2011 12:15:00 GMT
Garmin Approach S1 GPS Golf watch http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/gps-golf-watch.aspx

The Garmin Approach S1 Golf GPS watch could help shave some strokes off your handicap as well as speed up your play.

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 15 Jun 2011 15:28:00 GMT
Weight loss pills http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/weight-loss-pills.aspx

We look at the so-called "active ingredients" in weight loss pills to see if they live up to their claims.

]]>
Diet and exerciseMon, 02 May 2011 11:04:00 GMT
Weight loss myths http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/weight-loss-myths.aspx

CHOICE looks at problematic myths and misconceptions, as identified by our in-house experts and a survey of professionals.

]]>
Diet and exerciseThu, 20 Jan 2011 14:49:00 GMT
CHOICE summer guide http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/choice-summer-guide.aspx

We've put together the CHOICE summer guide to help you get the best start to 2011.

]]>
Diet and exerciseThu, 20 Jan 2011 13:22:00 GMT
Stay slim strategies http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/stay-slim-strategies.aspx

Are there key eating and exercise strategies that are trademarks of the slim? Learn the secrets of those who never get fat.

]]>
Diet and exerciseTue, 22 Jun 2010 10:40:00 GMT
Gastric banding http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/weight-loss-surgery.aspx

Gastric banding is promoted as a safe, easy and effective way for obese people to lose weight. CHOICE investigates the claims.

]]>
Diet and exerciseTue, 19 Jan 2010 17:06:00 GMT
Body fat scales reviews http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/weight-loss/body-fat-scales-review-and-compare.aspx

We tested 12 bathroom scales that measure body fat percentage as well as weight. But can they make you appear healthier than you really are?

]]>
Diet and exerciseThu, 10 Dec 2009 11:36:00 GMT
Home gym on a shoestring http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/cheap-home-gym.aspx

Think you need lots of space and money to set up an effective home gym? CHOICE's shopping list of equipment comes in at about $100.

]]>
Diet and exerciseWed, 25 Nov 2009 09:37:00 GMT
Heart rate monitor reviews http://www.choice.com.au/reviews-and-tests/food-and-health/diet-and-exercise/exercise-equipment/heart-rate-monitors review and compare.aspx

Choice tested 19 heart rate monitors for ease of use and performance, priced between $30 and $399.

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Diet and exerciseThu, 12 Nov 2009 09:48:00 GMT
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