I recently picked up an older Samsung HL-S5087W that I am trying to view over-the-air cable channels on. Unfortunately, plugging the coaxial cable directly into the TV and using the menu options to scan for channels returns no results. However, if I plug the same cable directly into my Vizio RazorLED TV, all is well and I receive around 20 channels (note: I am not subscribing to any cable service, these are OTA channels only).
From the research I've done, I believe the problem has something to do with the Samsung only having a NTSC/ATSC tuner with no QAM. First off, does this assessment sound correct? And secondly, is there any way I can resolve this problem by purchasing a converter box (or something similar)?
Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time!
This all depends on what the coaxial cable is connected to, either the cable company junction box (outside your home) or an external, rooftop antenna.
If it's connected to a cable company junction box, then while you do not subscribe to cable TV, you are getting what sounds like basic cable (ClearQAM). This would explain why your Vizio TV gets the channels but your Samsung does not.
If the coaxial cable is connected to an exterior antenna, then it sounds like there is probably an issue with the ATSC (digital) tuner of the Samsung unit.
Wolf, thank you for the response. I do not have an antenna and the cable is linked to the cable company's junction box. Do you know if there is an converter box, or something similar, that I can purchase to allow my Samsung to receive these ClearQAM channels?
No, there isn't a converter box you can purchase for your uses. Any box you purchase will need to be activated by your cable company. Since you're not a current subscriber, they would probably have an issue with that.