FAQs

We get new questions about ZapperBox all the time, and we will post our answers here as we have them. If you have a question about ZapperBox, please write to us here.


#1. When will you start shipping ZapperBox units?
We are shipping now. You can see videos from our test markets on our YouTube channel at this link.
#2. Will the ZapperBox M1 have USB ports for DVR?
Yes. The ZapperBox M1 has one USB 3.0 port, one USB 2.0 port and one SD-Micro slot. The micro-SD slot can accept a memory card up to 256GB.
#3. Will the ZapperBox M1 support gateway functionality to allow streaming to remote devices like smartphones and tablets?
Yes. This functionality can be enabled via software update once it has been developed.
#4. I have a regular High Definition TV, do I need to buy a 4K TV to use the ZapperBox M1?
You do not need to buy a new TV. However, regular HD TVs typically support a resolution of 1920x1080. A 4K TV supports a resolution that is 4 times higher or 3840x2160. 4K TVs are also referred to as UHD, or Ultra High Definition TVs. A new feature called HDR (High Dynamic Range) for rich colors is supported in most new 4K TVs. Technically, it is possible for regular HD TVs to also support HDR, but that is unlikely.

ATSC 3.0 has three main advantages: 4K, HDR and Dolby® AC-4. If you have an HDR capable TV you can enjoy HDR colors. If your TV does not support HDR, you can still enjoy Dolby® AC-4 features. The ZapperBox M1 will support HDR10 and HLG formats for HDR. It will not support Dolby Vision or SL-HDR.
#5. Why does an ATSC 3.0 receiver need Ethernet and Wi-Fi? Will the box work if it is not connected to the Internet?
The main reason for connecting the ZapperBox M1 to the Internet is to allow for software updates. In the future Internet access may also be used for advanced features like streaming video content.

If the box is not connected to the Internet, it will still work but will not be able to download software updates. ATSC 3.0 specifications will continue to evolve for a couple years and it is highly recommended to keep the box connected to the Internet.

Look out for some really interesting features that will be added via software updates.
#6. What are the benefits of a dual-tuner receiver over a single tuner receiver?
The dual-tuner version of ZapperBox has the following advantages:
1. While one tuner is being used to watch TV, the other tuner is used in the background to keep updating guide data being received over the air on other frequencies. This way, whenever you press the guide button, you see the most current guide data.
2. Once we update the box with DVR capabilities the second tuner can be used to record a program that is not currently being watched.
#7. When will the quad tuner box be available?
We expect to start shipping quad tuner receivers about 2 months after the single and dual tuner receivers. The quad tuner units will be priced at $329 each.
#8. How will DVR and extended guide data be priced?
DVR will be priced at $2/month or $20/year. Extended (14-day) guide data will be priced at $1/mo or $10/year and will require an Internet connection. The two can be used independently of each other. Obviously, extended guide data will make DVR easier to use.
#9. Will the ZapperBox be upgradeable to support copy-protected (DRM) broadcasts?
Broadcasters may decide to copy protect ATSC 3.0 broadcasts with DRM (Digital Rights Management) technology, as specified by the ATSC, in the future. Our goal is to allow all M1 units to be upgradeable to support copy protected broadcasts. At this time we believe that we will be able to upgrade all shipped units by offering swap-out replacement units. A round-trip shipping charge will apply. We are still researching this issue. There is some risk that M1 units may not be upgradeable to support DRM.
#10. 3-year free DVR subscription offer details
We realize that our customers have been really patient with us despite repeated delays. In order the show our gratitude, 3 years of free DVR subscription, valued at $60, will be credited to all ZapperBox units purchased or ordered before July 5, 2022
1. This offer expired on July 4 at 11:59pm PT.
2. The three year period will start when we make DVR software available via auto update, not when you actually start using it.
3. The $60 value of the 3-year subscription may not be used for guide data or any other subscriptions we may offer in the future.
4. The DVR subscription will automatically appear in your account. You do not need to do anything to claim it.
#11. What new features can we expect from ZapperBox during 2022?
1. DVR
2. Support for MMT
3. Support for DRM protected content
4. Perhaps support for A/344 broadcast apps. However, this may slip into 2023.
#12. Should I leave my ZapperBox on or off when I'm not watchingTV?
When you press the red power button on the remote control, the ZapperBox does not really turn off. It goes into standby (red light). During this time the HDMI output is turned off but all other internal functions keep working. In standby mode, a single-tuner box does channel scans to update guide data. A dual-tuner box is continuously using the second tuner to do channel scans whether it is on or in standby. So, it is more important to put a single tuner box in standby and not so much a dual-tuner box. Putting a box in standby does not save any power.
#13. How can I program a universal remote control to control the ZapperBox?
The ZapperBox remote control uses NEC IR wave forms. Here are the hex codes for each key:
On/Off 45
Mute 80
DVR D2
Live TV 5D
Record 95
BA D0
Guide 19
Info 99
Up CA
Left 99
OK CE
Right C1
Down D2
Zap 42
Menu 41
1 43
2 03
3 44
4 46
5 07
6 47
7 55
8 17
9 56
Decimal C3
0 1B
Back 11
#14. Are ZapperBox and Dolby AC-4 backwards compatible with legacy audio systems?
All ATSC 3.0 broadcasts in the US carry Dolby AC-4 audio. The ZapperBox M1 can:
1. Transcode AC-4 to Dolby Digital Plus or MAT when connected to newer AV receivers and Dolby Digital when connected to legacy AV receivers.
2. Decode any Dolby encoding to PCM stereo in Downmix Mode and send it over HDMI.
3. Passthrough AC-4 audio over HDMI if the connected device is capable of decoding AC-4 audio.


What else would you like to know?