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CableCARD installation FAQ

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by jfh3, Aug 25, 2007.

  1. May 8, 2009 #241 of 646
    Bierboy

    Bierboy Seasoned gas passer

    12,344
    0
    Jun 12, 2004
    Quad Sillies
    Assuming you mean an original S3? I have that and a TiVoHD. The HD will work with one M card or two S cards (but, of course, Mediacom in our area says they can't get their hands on any M cards, so I'm forced to use two S cards). My original S3 uses one S and one M card; it'll work with any combination of those, but, as you discovered, it requires both slots being used.
     
  2. Yuterald

    Yuterald New Member

    90
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    Jan 20, 2002
    NashVegas, USA
    any help? one of our 2 HDTivo's stopped all encrypted stations. it's been working fine since installation several months ago then the gray screen saying to call comcast to access popped up. after reading this thread i know the issue is the card is no longer validated. It's an MCard. I called Comcast and the tech said they sent two signals - one to pair the other to validate. She had me power off the Tivo while she did that and then i powered it back on after (the Mcard stayed in the Tivo during this) and still no luck and still the VAL value does not have a "V" after it (the other HDTIvo is fine and shows the "V"). Any suggestions? The tech is coming here in 2 days but I don't know what he's going to be able to do.
     
  3. Jul 3, 2009 #243 of 646
    juanian

    juanian New Member

    483
    0
    Oct 1, 2002
    Chandler, AZ
    I just had my TiVo HD set up with a M-CableCard (and a Tuning Adapter). There were two issues with the setup that I don't recall seeing posted (but, there are a lot of posts!). I thought I'd just try and pass my story along.

    First, the signal strength from my cable company (Cox/Phoenix) on my block is very low, but within their limits. (They have been out before, and the signal level at the street was low, and they were going to look into it; I was also told that my block was at the "end of the node".) Adding splitters (and surge suppressors) in the house may drop the signal level low enough to cause problems. (Before the installer arrived, he was having problems with not being able to receive a proper signal from one of the digital cable set top boxes; removing the splitter at that location "fixed" that problem.)

    This weak signal issue appears to have caused a problem with the pairing.

    An additional problem was getting the Host ID. When the CC was inserted, the ID was displayed for a short time, but before the installer could read it to the main office, the TiVo displayed the "Acquiring Channel Information" screen. After that, the CC tried to update its firmware, and it was not possible to re-display the ID. The installer said that, since the Host ID hadn't been entered into their system, the CC wouldn't be able to get access to update the firmware. (The display never did budge from 0 blocks and 0% completed.)

    The installer made a comment about the splitter (at that location) and removed it (to improve the signal strength), but that didn't improve anything.

    Inserted the second card. Before it even displayed the Host ID, the "Acquiring Channel Information" screen popped up. Going back to the CC screen, the firmware was being updated.

    Inserted the third card. It did display the Host ID, and didn't try and update the CC firmware. (I took a picture of the screen just in case the CC tried to update its firmware again, but it didn't.) The installer was able to get the info to the main office, but the TiVo still couldn't get a lock. Thinking about signal strength (and the fact that there is a signal amplifier in the house which could be affecting things), I moved the TiVo to the cable outlet that was used by the cable modem (since that signal is only split once outside, and is not on the amplified part of the cables). That worked. The CC got a lock, and the CC firmware successfully updated.

    Moved the TiVo back to the living room, and problems happened again. Then, he realized that the cable was also going through a surge suppressor. Once that was removed, channels could be received. He checked a number of channels, and they all were coming in.

    Then the Tuning Adapter was hooked up (by removing the cable from the TiVo and plugging it into the TA). There was the "normal" wait for the light to stop flashing, which it finally did (after about 5 to 10 minutes). Plugging the USB into the TiVo, the TiVo recognized it, but no channels were being displayed. I knew nothing about Tuning Adapters (except that they are needed to get SDV channels). I asked about the Cable Out on the TA (which wasn't connected to anything). He didn't seem to know, but he didn't think it was needed. I asked if USB had the bandwidth for HD content, and he said that it did. Still no channels.

    I asked him to connect the Cable Out from the TA to the Cable (In) on the TiVo, just to see what would happen. He finally did do that, and channels appeared. He tried a variety of channels (HD, HBO, ...), and they all seemed to work. (Since I didn't know which channels were SDV, there wasn't anything else to do.) He needed to leave (and I needed to get to work), so I OK'ed things.

    (I think I have a TA problem - it is currently in the 6-flash mode, and the TiVo doesn't show a TA. Also, I can't get the HBO HD channel. I'll look into that later.)

    Bottom line:
    1: Make sure you have a strong enough signal at the TiVo, or you might have pairing problems.
    2: Be sure to capture the Host ID as quick as possible (because it might go away).
     
  4. Jul 3, 2009 #244 of 646
    jsnow789

    jsnow789 New Member

    29
    0
    Sep 29, 2003
    I've got an original S3 with 2 S-Cards. It's been working fine for a few years. I did have problems with the Central Florida Bright House HD fiasco last year-but those channels are back. I'm scheduled to have the S-Cards replaced with M-Cards on Monday. This is not costing me anything... but my question is - do I really need to bother? Will I get any additional functionality or channels with the M-Cards? I see now that I'm going to need/pay for 2 cards anyway...

    Should I cancel the call?

    TIA!

    J
     
  5. Jul 3, 2009 #245 of 646
    Bierboy

    Bierboy Seasoned gas passer

    12,344
    0
    Jun 12, 2004
    Quad Sillies
    Absolutely NO reason to have those cards replaced. It will give you no additional functionality or extra channels.
     
  6. Jul 3, 2009 #246 of 646
    jsnow789

    jsnow789 New Member

    29
    0
    Sep 29, 2003
    That's what I was thinking after reading the last few pages of this thread.

    Thanks!
     
  7. Jul 3, 2009 #247 of 646
    Bierboy

    Bierboy Seasoned gas passer

    12,344
    0
    Jun 12, 2004
    Quad Sillies
    My opinion is "if it ain't broke, don't try to fix it." I've had CableCARDS in my original S3 for almost a year now with nary a glitch. I enjoy many digital HD channels with it and I only pay $1.99/month/card more to get nearly 30 HD channels. Why should I tinker with that?
     
  8. Jul 4, 2009 #248 of 646
    drhankz

    drhankz New Member

    306
    0
    Jan 14, 2008
    Salem NH
    The only reason to POSSIBLY switch from 2-S cards to 1-M Card
    might be to SAVE MONEY. It all depends on your cable Company.
    Everyone is different. Some charge for each card - so ONE card
    might be less than two cards - but only your cable company knows
    that answer. ;)
     
  9. Jul 4, 2009 #249 of 646
    Bierboy

    Bierboy Seasoned gas passer

    12,344
    0
    Jun 12, 2004
    Quad Sillies
    He can't do that....the original S3 requires 2 cards, no matter what type, if he wants to utilize both tuners.
     
  10. Jul 4, 2009 #250 of 646
    drhankz

    drhankz New Member

    306
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    Jan 14, 2008
    Salem NH
    I didn't know that - I thought he was having 2-S Cards
    Replaced with 1-M Card.

    I only OWN TiVO-HDs which can do that.

    I looked at his original post and it did say Cards for Cards.

    It's early need more COFFEE
     
  11. Aug 1, 2009 #251 of 646
    RichardM

    RichardM New Member

    15
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    Dec 5, 2004
    I am considering the purchase of a Tivo HD, Tivo Service and OTA HD Antenna.
    To receive more HD channels I could get the cable card from my local cable company.
    I called Cox Cable, my present cable service company and asked them for the cost of a Cable Card.
    They told me to use their Cable Card with a Tivo HD DVR and OTA HD Antenna I would have to pay the following:
    $48.99 Standard Service
    $5.99 Digital Service
    $1.99 Cable Card
    Cox states that I cannot use the Cable Card unless I also pay the cost of their Standard Service and Digital Service.
    Can anyone verify that this is correct?

    $57 per month for the use of a Cable Card seems expensive to me.
     
  12. Aug 1, 2009 #252 of 646
    a68oliver

    a68oliver Member

    431
    0
    Jul 15, 2000
    Crawfordsvil...
    The CableCard isn't costing you $57. You also get access to CABLE channels. That is where the bullk of the charges are coming from. Paying for the HD Digital Service and CableCard gives you access to the digital versions of those CABLE channels.

    A CableCard won't give you more HD OTA channels. It gives you digital CABLE channels when you subscribe to CABLE.

    Are you already paying Cox for cable service? If so, then you only pay them another $7.98. This assumes you are not on a lower cost limited basic plan.
     
  13. Aug 4, 2009 #253 of 646
    kdmorse

    kdmorse Active Member

    5,031
    7
    Jan 29, 2001
    Germantown, MD
    Just wanted to come back and thank everyone for this FAQ thread. The following sentence:

    probably singularly prevented the need for a truck roll last weekend.

    -Ken
     
  14. tripmaster

    tripmaster New Member

    135
    0
    May 27, 2003
    Hi all - one of my cable cards died as only 1 tuner gets anything; the other tuner only gets broadcast channels - but from going through the menus they both seem to be active. I no longer see EMM Count, etc anywhere - I upgraded to M cards on my S3 bc I heard here that they are more reliable.

    TWCNYC is coming tomorrow. I'd like him to only pull one card but I dont have faith he can figure out which one is live and which one is hobbled. Can someone advise?
     
  15. MacSkip

    MacSkip New Member

    7
    0
    Aug 20, 2009
    Tucson, AZ
    You might want to check out the thread "no video and rapid beeping" in the TiVo Help Center forum. I'm relatively new with my S3 HD set (with 2 CCs) and had a totally unexpected beeping when I turned on the TV about a month ago. We've had the unit for about three months and all has gone well up to then. The beeping happened again last evening. I searched for "beeping" in this forum and found nothing, but one did pop up in the Help Center, so I've been posting there. However the suggestion given to me by TiVo support was that one (or both) of the CableCARDS *may* be the culprit. If you're interested, follow up there. (There's probably a way to put a link to that forum here, but since I'm new to the TiVo community, I haven't bumped into that mechanism, if it exists.)
     
  16. brettatk

    brettatk Thread Killer

    11,325
    8
    Oct 11, 2002
    Smyrna, GA
    I had to clear and delete everything a few weeks back on my Tivo HD when I replaced my hard drive. Now periodically my Tivo becomes unresponsive and you must pull the plug to reboot it. I discovered that the host ID has changed on the cablecards and they are no longer validated and Tivo thinks this is my problem. Is this something Charter can easily do over the phone or will I need a truck rollout?
     
  17. richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
    2
    Jan 4, 2003
    Some cableco's will "re-hit" or "re-authorize" your cable cards over the phone. Others require a truck roll. Luck of the draw (even within some cable companies...depending on locale).
     
  18. drhankz

    drhankz New Member

    306
    0
    Jan 14, 2008
    Salem NH
    I have never heard of a TRUCK ROLL to just Hit the
    Cable Cards with NEW KEYS. If that were the case
    I would have had 100 Truck Rolls, versus NONE.

    My Recommendation is SAY NO

    There certainly is NO NEED.
     
  19. richsadams

    richsadams Active Member

    8,893
    2
    Jan 4, 2003
    The OP needs to have the ID re-established. Some cableco's will allow their customers to do that over the phone, others won't. "Just say no" is not an option in some areas.

    You've had your cable cards re-authorized 100 times? :confused:
     
  20. drhankz

    drhankz New Member

    306
    0
    Jan 14, 2008
    Salem NH
    Over the last 5 years, yes - at least 100 times. But I also have (5)
    Cable Cards. So that is like someone having (1) Cable Card for 5 Years ;)

    It all comes down to how often you use them and how often the Cable-Co
    decides to change their Encryption Keys. My Cable-Co use to refresh all
    the KEYS at least once a month. Since 3 out of 5 of my Cable Cards get
    infrequent use - They would MISS the Key update and I needed to call.
    And the reason mine would miss the KEY update is because in my Theaters,
    the Units are NOT just powered off - but actually disconnected from the
    AC line.

    With the Digital Transition, my Cable-Co must have lengthened their key
    period. It is been 6 Months and no need for a KEY Update.
     

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