The converter boxes (I am assuming you are in the US) for the digital switchover are tuners. They will pickup digital tv signals and convert to analog that your unit should be able to use (and switch channels for you etc). IF you are in the US, you are going to need a converter box anyway when things go digital in a few months (to record to a vcr, analog dvd recorder or any other analog device from broadcast tv). There may be coupons left for 40$ off (you can get 2).
In case you didn’t know, in about 5 months, analog tv signals will end in the US (for the most part) so you will need converter boxes anyway unless your tv’s have digital tuners.
a few converter boxes
Most major electronics stores carry them (for now anyway).
Fyi yes you can use a vcr too (at least while there are still analog broadcasts). IF you have cable, dish etc, you should be able to just change channels on their equipment.