1. Low-power Digital TV Converter Box. If you don't already have a Digital TV Converter Box, I recommend the "MicroGEM MG2000", the smallest unit on the market at 4.5" square. It's also one of the top rated units out there. If you can still order one of the free government $40 "coupons", do so asap. The MG2000 is apx. $55 (before coupon).
2. Portable video player, such as a handheld TV. I purchased a used 8" portable DVD player on eBay just for this project for $40. Your device MUST have external "Video In/Out" and "Audio In/Out" jacks. If you already have a portable DVD player or old portable TV, use that and save yourself some money. I chose to use a DVD Player because most have a "widescreen" display (perfect for DTV) and a 3-hour battery pack.
3. ONE 4 D-cell battery holder with "snap terminal" (aka: 9volt style) connector, and ONE single D-cell battery holder with wires. I found the 4-cell holder on eBay for $6 (after s/h) and the 1-cell holder at Radio Shack for 99cents - or try this
. (This is what I needed to power the 6.5v MG2000. If you have/buy a different receiver, be sure to buy the correct number of holders for enough batteries to power your receiver.) Be sure to use D-cell holders for maximum battery life.)
4. One 2.
5mm (tubular power connection) to "9v clip" for conecting the "snap-terminals" of the battery holder to the DTV receiver (+ center, - sleave). I found this at a local electronics supply for $3. ("Electronic Parts Outlet [EPO]" part#: RC-9v-2155).
5. Five D-cell batteries.
6. A small piece of wood to mount the battery holders, 7"x3" (1/4" thin is best).
7. Silicone glue for mounting holders to board.
8. Two small machine screws cut down to apx. 1/4" long, with nuts.
9. One thin metal "plate", 1/2" square, with a hole in the middle for the screw.
10. Depending on your video display device, RCA cables to connect the audio/video output of your Converter box to your display. I used a single RCA-to-2.5mm for video and a dual RCA-to-2.5" cable for audio (both found at Radio Shack). The audio cable is easy to find just about anywhere. The single RCA-to-2.5mm cable can be a bit harder to find (Radio Shack part#: 42-2444A - "Audio and Digital-Camera Cable").
11. Rabbit-ears or other small UHF antenna (or Google DIY HDTV antenna
I already had most of these items, so my total cost was about $65, the most expensive items being the used DVD Player and new HDTV tuner. If you find a tuner for less than $40, it'll be free with the government coupon. And many people already have an old portable TV that would otherwise become worthless after the national switch to DTV in February, taking your total cost down to just a few bucks for batteries and cables.