An adaptive receiver includes an adaptive demodulator and an adaptive decoder for providing demodulated and decoded output data from a video signal encoded for satellite, terrestrial or cable transmission. The demodulator recovers demodulated output data by using an adaptive timing recovery network and an adaptive carrier recovery network that incorporates a selectable slicer network. In addition, an Automatic Gain Control network within the demodulator provides a gain control output as a function of a difference between signals produced both prior to and following the slicer. The demodulator may also incorporate a signal quality detector that uses carrier recovery network signals to provide an estimate of the error in the demodulated output data. The decoder produces a Viterbi decoded output from the demodulated output data by using a selectable code rate Viterbi decoder.