As everyone in the US should know, by law all analog off-air TV broadcasts have to end next February and basically all off-air broadcasts will be digital. If you have an analog TV you can get a converter box that will change the digital signal to analog so your old TV will continue to work. The government is offering every household two coupons worth $40 toward purchase of digital converters.
The old analog TV in our bedroom was near death (remote didn't work most of the time and the fault was with the TV, not the remote), so we decided to get a new LCD 19" widescreen HDTV. I ordered it online for in-store pickup. We live in the country, have no wire cable available, have indoor antennas for each TV, and have always had bad reception on the two VHF channels we get and often-bad reception for the Fox UHF channel. We had no idea whether we'd be able to get any digital signals with the new TV.
What a surprise! We get 11 digital channels--all that are available here except for one that we have to receive as analog because the digital signal doesn't make it. With the analog TV we got six channels, of which two came in very badly and one was highly variable. With digital TV you don't get snow or wobbling or static or ghosts. It either comes in or it doesn't. If the signal is weak it will pixellate or break up. The picture is beautiful. We haven't had good reception on VHF channels for the 31 years we've lived in this location. We're still trying to believe we can actually see CBS and NBC without snow that practically obscured the picture.
We *needed* the new TV for the bedroom, but my husband was so impressed with the picture that he said we had to get an HDTV for the living room, too. So the very next day we bought a 26" widescreen. It's beautiful, too--perfect reception on the 11 digital channels and the one channel we have to watch as analog. The size is fine for the living room, which is not large.
Of course, since we now have good reception for the channels that came in poorly as analog, we needed something for time switching and recording shows. Our analog VCRs can't record a digital channel. So I did some research and decided to get a hard drive/DVD recorder, which can record both analog and digital signals.
The downside to all this (besides paying for it<g>) was learning how to use the new TVs and HDD/DVD recorder. I never hooked up anything more complex than coax going from antenna to VCR to TV. All of a sudden I was faced with composite, S-video, component, and HDMI. Pretty much a crash course on cables! I've got the HDD/DVD recorder figured out to the extent that I can do a timer recording of a show and a playback. My husband is pretty much a Luddite when it comes to this newfangled stuff, though he doesn't mind watching what I've recorded.
Of course, getting all this equipment set up and learning to use it didn't leave me much time for installing the VL 64-bit version, which I can't do anyway until I finish an urgent project (which also get pushed aside temporarily). But now we can actually *see* what's on instead of a screenful of snow. Life is good!