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Any Suddenlink CableCard stories?

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by raober, Sep 21, 2006.

  1. raober

    raober New Member

    Sep 9, 2006
    My S3 arrived! Yay! Unfortunately, I don't have time to play with it tonight...Sunday will be the earliest I can really tinker.

    Anyway, I ended up cancelling the card install I had with Suddenlink today. Funny thing is, they still thought I had an install, and gave me a courtesy call last night. No big deal.

    But, today, my wife took a call from them when I was working. A tech called because he thought I still had an appointment. He called to cancel it himself actually, saying that they had no CableCards. My wife mentioned that I had rescheduled for two weeks from Friday. He said that "hopefully" they will have cards by then.

    What a crock. And I thought this would go smoothly since the woman who took my original call seemed to "get it." I can already see that this could be a problem.

    Anyone else have any Suddenlink experiences to share?
  2. turnpike17

    turnpike17 New Member

    Apr 10, 2006
    Im in stillwater, OK and i have suddenlink and the people at the main office first told me their Cablecards dont work with DVR's so i called in and said it was for two TV's. The installer should be here on monday. I cant wait!
  3. RichCoder

    RichCoder New Member

    Oct 23, 2006
    Will they let you have 2 cable cards? I asked one installer and he told me there was a limit of one per household.

  4. Jaysv

    Jaysv New Member

    Feb 8, 2004
    Anyone have an update on Suddenlink installs? I'm looking to make the HD jump around the first of the year and would like hear of other Suddenlink customer experiences.

  5. mwarner

    mwarner New Member

    Dec 12, 2000

    I have had my TiVo Series 3 with Suddenlink for a little while now. We were in an old Cox area.

    No major issues with the card install. The tech they sent out hadn't done much with cable cards, let alone a TiVo, so I had to help him thru it using the TiVo's cablecard guide. After we were done, the tech claimed that the premium channels wouldn't be authorized for at least 12-24 hours. So, I had analog cable working fine and some digital channels working, but no HBO, Showtime, etc.

    About 4 hours after he left, all my channels went out. Called Suddenlink and the nice girl on the phone rehit all my cards. Since then, no issues (except one channel with no audio).

    Hope that helps!

  6. gpgrubb

    gpgrubb New Member

    Nov 8, 2006
    My local Suddenlink (formerly Cox) office in Tyler, TX gave me the "deer in the headlights" blank look when I asked for a CableCARD. So, I e-mailed the corporate folks thru the website and got this response
    " Dear Valued Suddenlink Customer:

    Thank you for your inquiry. Suddenlink is committed to providing the best customer service possible.

    I apologize for any inconvenience this issue has caused but we do not provide CableCARDs for TiVo.The only CableCARDs we provide are for Digital Ready TV's.

    We hope that we have been able to provide you with the information you requested. If we have not, or if we can be of any additional service to you, please do not hesitate to contact us again.

    Did you know that you can speak with a live agent without picking up the phone? It's Easy! Simply Click on the link below and let us assist you with your general or account specific questions. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for your convenience.

    Thank you for using Suddenlink Communications, Life Connected

    Suddenlink Communications Online Customer Care Team

    Original Message Follows: ------------------------

    Yes, I am requesting Suddenlink to provide me with a CableCard and install it into my Tivo DVR. I also am renting your digital cable boxes for use on my other TV sets.

    Thanks, "
    Now what?
  7. mwarner

    mwarner New Member

    Dec 12, 2000
    Just call them up and ask for two cable cards for your digital TV. When they show up, help them install the cards in the TiVo and you'll be fine (follow the instructions from TiVo).

  8. cbordman

    cbordman PP-ASEL

    May 14, 2001
    Suddenlink in Point Pleasant, WV showed up with 2 cards to install, but when he called to activate them, the lady on the phone said she didn't know how to put them into the billing system.

    They're supposed to try again in a few weeks.
  9. couperine

    couperine New Member

    May 29, 2007
    It's interesting that supposedly Suddenlink is the 9th largest cable provider in the US, but there are so few stories here about customers' experiences with CableCard installation. I'll share our experience in Kingwood, TX (suburb of Houston).

    We scheduled a 2 CableCard installation in a TiVo with no problems at all. The installer had never put a CC into a TiVo, and when he left, we assumed all was well because I could get the HD channels in the subscription package. The tech didn't want to read the TiVo literature at all; after I started checking all the channels, I didn't have the analog or digital stations. Some can see where I'm heading... :)

    Called the national number - they had no clue what we about CC's, but we scheduled a service call for the next day. Thankfully this tech had put cards in a few TiVo's in the area, and he realized that my problem was actually the video input setting. We had it set for native and needed to use 1080i hybrid so that we could receive all the types of input.

    Suddenlink uses Motorola cards, and there is certainly a wealth of technical support on the web for it. My experience is that their national CS staff is fairly useless in this endeavor (I got the old, let me give your number to my supervisor and let them call you trick, and then a better, I just don't know, let's send a tech), and in talking to the second technician, there isn't that much experience locally with installing CC's in TiVos. However, we had no issues with asking for 2 Cards or with the fee charged for them.

    I don't think we were charged a service call fee either, but I'll have to check our newly padded cable bill to be sure. We tried to stick it out with the Suddenlink DVR, but it was a perfectly hideous interface. I'm glad that we have our TiVo up and running - the weeks without TiVo were a rude awakening after 3 years of TiVo service.
  10. raober

    raober New Member

    Sep 9, 2006
    Heh, I started this thread a while back...might as well provide an update.

    I live along I-64 between Charleston and Huntington, WV. The original install went OK, it did take about 90 minutest to get both CCs working. The lady at the office talking to the tech on speakerphone said repeatedly how much she hated CCs. :rolleyes:

    About a month ago, I started losing some of the HD channels. Had to get another truck roll, but at least it was free. They hit the cards several times and got all the channels working again. It's been near flawless since...even the audio/video breakups I had been having went away. I think they cleaned up their signal a bit recently.

    This office uses SA cards, btw.
  11. rhenson

    rhenson New Member

    Sep 21, 2003
    I've got tivo 2 and am thinking of finally switching to cable (from dish network) and moving to a tivo 3. I'm being told from SL that you can only get HD with their DVR box. I plan on attempthing to get cable cards and bypassing the whole SL DVR nightmare, but have a question. Can I use the SL DVR for HD DVR and retain my tivo 2 for all other channels? If not, is Tivo offering any sort of guarantee that if I purchase a tivo 3 (that is supposed to work with all cable providers) and it doesn't that they will refund the purchase?
    Thanks for any guidance.
  12. jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

    Apr 15, 2004

    Write back and tell them:

    1) That you are sorry and were mistaken - you want the cards installed in a digital ready TV. (There is nothing in the head end system that identifies the type of host a CableCARD is installed in).

    2) You are sorry to hear that they are in violation of FCC and CableLabs requirements. Ask them to provide a contact for their legal department for you to forward to the FCC for further assistance.

    3) Show them the model number of the Tivo on the CableLabs approved device list.

    #1 is probably the easiest. Get them working, then fight any duplicate outlet charges after the fact (if you are using SCards). Ideally, you will get a single multistream (MStream) card and there won't be any issue.
  13. jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

    Apr 15, 2004

    Yes, Tivo has a 30 day money back return. If the cable company has/supports cablecards (and all but the smallest must), then they will work in either of the Tivo series 3 boxes.
  14. sljack63

    sljack63 New Member

    Nov 2, 2004
    I called Suddenlink to ask what the fee would be to rent CableCards. Here is what I understood them to tell me:

    1. They will not support cablecards installed in a Tivo because it is a competing services;
    2. They will not install a cablecard into a Tivo, but only into a tv;
    3. They will not release cablecards for a self-install by the consumer.

    Some of the posters on here have suggested I lie when I call to set up a cablecard install and tell them it is for my tv and then when the tech gets there, making them install it into the Tivo. I highly doubt this will work. Especially in light of the fact that the phone support guy was very quick to inform me that they will not install a card into a Tivo - sounds to me that since the release of the new tivo HD, the company has instituted a comprehensive policy which prohibits rental of cablecards to tivo subscribers.

    So, tell me: How many Suddenlink subscribers are out there that are like me and cannot buy a HD Tivo because of the monopoly the cable company has imposed?
  15. Combat Medic

    Combat Medic No guts, no glory

    Sep 6, 2001
    The cable company doesn't have a choice in the matter. Call them up and ask for the address for their legal department. Write a letter to them CCing the local franchise board and the FCC and all will go away.
  16. jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

    Apr 15, 2004
    #3 may be valid - that is their call.

    #1 and #2 are variations of the same mis-informed BS - the Tivo is a CableLabs approved device. As such, they MUST install cards in the Tivo.

    They don't have to support the Tivo, but they have to support the cards supported in the Tivo.

    If you still have problems, it might be easier just to call back and tell them you want them installed in a TV. If they really want to know the model #, tell them to check the CableLabs approved devices list for a TCD652160. :)
  17. chachierodriguez

    chachierodriguez New Member

    Oct 22, 2007
    Hey Everyone! I am new here, and also new to Tivo. As a true tv junkie I thought the obvious move was to replace my Suddenlink dvr with a series 3 HD. I also thought that if I realy liked the Tivo experience I would replace the other two Suddenlink dvrs in my house. I thought you might enjoy my continuing struggle to get my Tivo hooked up!!! I am in Humboldt County, California. An old Cox area.

    When I first opened the box around the end of September, I was dismayed to find out about the cable card deal. I guess somehow I missed that part on Amazon's ad. This is when I started calling Suddenlink.

    Suddenlink Call 1:
    I was told that Suddenlink did not "support Tivo" and I could not have cards.

    I went on Vacation for a few days, then I found this forum and called back.

    Suddenlink Call 2:
    I told the rep that I now knew that it was required by law that they make cards ready for me and that I wanted them. I was put on hold for about 5 min. and then told that there were no cards in Northern California, and even if there was, i would not get any premium channels. I asked for a manager, she said one would call me back. I waited three days.

    Suddenlink Call 3:
    Now asking for cards for a "approved digital ready device" I was told that I could just go to my local office and pick them right up and do the install myself.

    Suddenlink Office Stop by:
    I was told that I had to have the cards installed and that I would not get my HD channels. I left and opted to call tivo

    Tivo Call:
    The rep told me that if Suddenlink didn't want to give me cards or had weird outdated cards that for some reason did not get all channels, there was nothing he could do.

    Suddenlink Call 4:
    I told the rep the whole story and reminded him how much I spend with them every month. He called the dispatch in my area and he was told that Suddenlink just did not have any cards in our area and there was no word on when they would get them. I reminded him that it was the law that they were supposed to make those available to customers, and again of how big my bill was. He promised to talk directly to his manager regarding this issue and a quick call back. I waited a week and then called again.

    Suddenlink Call 5:
    I told the whole story. I was told that this rep would email the former rep and the manager and get right back to me. Its been 4 days.

    At this point I have almost had the unit for 30 days... I don't know if I can still return it. What I realy want is a couple of cable cards so I can just use the thing. Frustration is boiling over!!!! I wish I could tell Suddenlink where to put their substandard dvrs, but I am a tv junkie, so here I am.
  18. demon

    demon BURNINATOR

    Nov 15, 2006
    Submit a complaint on the FCC's web site. I've been through this same dance with my cable company, and that was the only thing that managed to get them to sit up and pay attention. If you really want to return the unit you got, and buy another in a month after your cable company calls you up, you could do that - it took about a month between when I submitted my complaint and when the cable company's netops department called me up saying "I hear you're looking for some CableCARDs... when would you like to make the appointment for installation?" It will require waiting a bit, but it worked for me - my Series3 is now receiving full digital cable, including HBO-HD.

    Edit: I'm not with Suddenlink, but PrairieWave/Knology in western South Dakota, but when their legal rep receives that complaint notice, they won't want to be on the FCC's bad side.
  19. Joybob

    Joybob New Member

    Oct 2, 2007
    I have been told the same thing by my cable co. Are they allowed to do this?
  20. brazospiano

    brazospiano New Member

    Nov 5, 2007
    Okay I am a total newbie, but really want to get a DVR for my wife for her birthday later this week. I don't think we have digital cable. We have Suddenlink. A coworker has a Suddenlink DVR but are paying $20 a month for it I was told. I would rather buy one.

    Sounds like I will follow the FCC complaint and know which cable card approved device to tell them to use it with...

    If I will probably purchase a HD tv next year, will the Tivo3 be what I need? Do I have to have digital cable for this to work?

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