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Comcast Cuts Cable Cards?

Discussion in 'TiVo Roamio DVRs' started by wecnews, Jan 18, 2014.

  1. wecnews

    wecnews New Member

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    Oct 19, 2009
    So…

    I like so many of you have the error message on some of my channels.

    "this channel is not authorized please contact your cable provider"

    Well they have been trying to fix it for months…

    new cable cards, boosted signals, etc.

    comcast has really dropped the ball here.

    Anyway tivo said I needed a motorola cable card vs cisco that I have. They also suggested an attenuator. Well, after a three week wait, a comcast tech shows up supposedly to install all this stuff and has none of it. Says they don't carry cable cards at all.

    I call tech support back and they tell me comcast doesn't supply or support cable cards any longer, they've been removed from my market. Sorry!

    Um what???

    I just bought a roamio pro and 4 mini's

    Anyone else hear of this?!?!?
     
  2. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Apr 17, 2000
    Nevada
    They're full of sh*t! They are required by law to support them. You should be able to go down to the local office and pick one up.

    Although you can't choose the brand. The brand of the card typically matches the brand of the equipment at the head end. But either brand will work. It's a standard.
     
  3. bananaman

    bananaman New Member

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    Jul 18, 2005
    That's a lot of nonsense. Call the Comcast CableCard hotline 1-877-405-2298.
     
  4. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
  5. JosephB

    JosephB Member

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    Birmingham, AL
    FWIW, TiVo isn't necessarily the authority on what kind (Moto v. Cisco) of cards you need. What kind of cable box did you have before you got your TiVo? That will dictate what kind of CableCard you need.
     
  6. wecnews

    wecnews New Member

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    Oct 19, 2009
    I'm not kidding.

    To answer your questions…

    Dan, I have a cisco…. it doesn't work. The Error message

    "this channel is not authorized please contact your cable provider" is literally on every single cable channel. I can only watch local channels nothing else.

    Comcast send techs out who know nothing about tivo. I've had 4 in the past 3 months.

    Tivo did some troubleshooting and said this is a known issue with some comcast cisco/sci atlanta cable cards and the roamio. they said for the least issues ask for motorola. If they can't give me that I must have firmware version 1.5.3 for cisco. the 1.5.2 I currently have doesn't work, and won't work. I must have 1.5.3.

    and comcast says they have no motorola and no 1.5.3 in my market, and while they're offering service on the cable cards in circulation they're not offering anymore. They're are none available of 1.5.3 or motorola anything in my area.


    Bananaman, I've spoken to the cable card hotline ladies many many times. I think they all know me by name! lol Refresh signals after refresh signals, tech after tech. NOTHING FIXES IT.

    Todd, I think they will support this version i have, but won't give me a new version since this version won't work with roamio. But I will try again.

    Joseph, I've been a tivo customer since 2004. I had no box before. When I moved to this city, I unpacked 5 Tivo HD's had multi stream cards in all of them. Cisco/Sci Atlanta. They worked fine. I upgraded to a premiere 4 and 2 mini's and had no issues. I upgraded to a roamio and the issues began and have gotten increasingly worse.

    I haven't had a cable box since HDTV wasn't invented :)
     
  7. rainwater

    rainwater Active Member

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    Sep 21, 2004
    A refresh signal would not matter since the card is not paired correctly based on what you are describing. The firmware version shouldn't make a difference since there have been very little reports of cablecards not pairing because of old firmware.
     
  8. wecnews

    wecnews New Member

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    Oct 19, 2009
    it shows paired.

    comcast shows no error messages at all on their end

    and pairing is "complete"

    but still no channels.
     
  9. tarheelblue32

    tarheelblue32 Active Member

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    Jan 12, 2014
    Raleigh, NC
    From what you've described, it definitely sounds like some kind of weird pairing problem. If you've tried pairing multiple CableCards to this Roamio unit and all have had the exact same problem, I'd actually be inclined to think maybe the problem is the Roamio unit itself. Maybe you just got a lemon. If I were you, I'd push TiVo hard to let you exchange this Roamio unit for another one.
     
  10. todd_j_derr

    todd_j_derr Member

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    Jun 6, 2000
    Pittsburgh,...
    They are violating multiple FCC regulations (see the link I sent earlier) and I would report them. There are explicit laws against installers showing up without cablecards and against providing inaccurate information. Of course, that is not likely to bring an expedient resolution to your problem so I'd probably start by calling Comcast and telling them you're going to report them and see if that lights a fire under their butts.

    I don't remember the details but I do remember having a miserable time with Comcast pairing many years ago. I think they eventually sent a tech with new cards which finally fixed the problem, with some fishy sounding explanation.

    A defective Tivo is also a possibility, you could try to have them send you another one.
     
  11. wecnews

    wecnews New Member

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    Oct 19, 2009
    I've hinted at it.

    they say it's a known issue and it's a firmware problem.

    but I don't know.

    So I'm left trying to deal with this….
     
  12. lessd

    lessd Active Member

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    Jan 23, 2005
    CT
    On the cable card menu just check the letter after the work Val, it should be a V if it is a ? the card is not paired. maybe this is just for the Moto cards that I have, but may be worth a try.
     
  13. c3

    c3 TiVoholic

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    Silicon...
    Are those premium channels (such as HBO)? Non-premium channels don't even require pairing.
     
  14. wecnews

    wecnews New Member

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    Oct 19, 2009
    only channels I get are local channels cbs, nbc, abc, pbs, and ind.

    nothing else comes through no animal planet, hgtv, disney, hbo, nothing
     
  15. wecnews

    wecnews New Member

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    Oct 19, 2009
    can you tell i only have internet?

    all i do is read and surf the net
     
  16. c3

    c3 TiVoholic

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    If those channels are not encrypted in your market, then that means you cannot get any encrypted channels.
     
  17. tarheelblue32

    tarheelblue32 Active Member

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    Raleigh, NC
    Are you sure about that? I don't have Comcast, but when I installed my CableCard on Time Warner, the only channels I was getting before I called them to pair it with my Roamio were the local broadcast channels, community access channels, and C-SPAN.
     
  18. c3

    c3 TiVoholic

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    Yes, that's how it works with Comcast, at least in the San Francisco Bay Area.
     
  19. tarheelblue32

    tarheelblue32 Active Member

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    Jan 12, 2014
    Raleigh, NC
    I agree with the comments above that you are going to probably have to get mean and nasty with Comcast on this with some threats of filing formal complaints about them to the appropriate regulatory authorities. It is completely unacceptable and illegal that they are not supplying proper CableCards with up-to-date firmware.

    But I'm also not 100% convinced with TiVo's explanation that this is simply a CableCard firmware issue. Everything you describe sounds like it is some kind of pairing issue, and old firmware is unlikely to be the cause of that.

    There have to be literally thousands of Comcast customers successfully using their Roamios with Comcast CableCards. Of course TiVo wants to blame Comcast for the problem (and it very well may be Comcast's fault), but it just seems a little suspicious to me that thousands of other Roamio units have been successfully paired with Comcast CableCards over the last 6 months but yours can't be. This is what makes me think maybe you could have a Roamio with some kind of strange CableCard pairing defect.
     
  20. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Apr 17, 2000
    Nevada
    They're confusing the issue. The firmware does not effect basic pairing. It can effect the Roamio's ability to use all 6 tuners, but if you can't tune channels on the first 4 then something is screwed up with the pairing.

    As for the comment above about how only HBO, etc... requiring pairing, that varies by market. While most cable companies only enable the copy protection bit on premium channels a LOT of them encrypt all but the locals. They're not allowed to encrypt the local channels, which is why you cans see those, but they can encrypt the rest. Unencrypted channels (aka clear QAM) are going away in almost all major markets.

    As I said above they are required to allow you to do a self install. So what I would do is go down to the local office and trade your current CableCARD for a new one. When you get home pop it into your TiVo and a special pairing screen will pop up. Take a picture of it just in case it clears before you get someone on the phone. Now call the special CableCARD hotline and give them the info on the screen. Make sure they read it back to you and verify. I had a problem once and it turned out the lady on the phone had transversed a couple of numbers.

    If they can't get that new one working insist that TiVo send you a new Roamio. When you get the new one try pairing the same card. If it still doesn't work then ask to speak to a supervisor at Comcast and tell them if they can't get it working you're canceling your service and getting DirecTV and DSL instead.

    Unfortunately these things can be a real PITA sometimes. It's hard to find someone that actually knows what they are doing with CableCARDs and techs tend to blow them off with an "They never trained me on TiVo" attitude.
     

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