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Moca bandwidth too low errors - help

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by marklyn, Jun 2, 2014.

  1. nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

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    Feb 5, 2011
    Cox Cable...
    ...and there was much rejoicing <yay> :D

    For future visitors of the thread, this still is a "split". The split just takes place at the amp/distribution block (a bit further back than "usual").

    If you'd have disclosed the cable modem earlier, I'd have said to use that PoE filter for the TA. I could have asked, too.

    Just to button this all up nicely: You do have an actual PoE filter (before any splits or amps) where the single lateral coax feed comes into the house, right?

    If you do, you should be good to go. Telemark's point about the TA having an upstream/return channel (like a cable modem) was a valid point, if you have any TA/SDV issues in the future.
     
  2. telemark

    telemark New Member

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    Nov 12, 2013
    Yay too.

    I ideally would want to know the TA is not having a high error rate. Is there a way to get into it's diagnostics?

    I figure it's boosting it's signal to get back across the amp, which wouldn't have been helping the MOCA issue, though resolved.
     
  3. marklyn

    marklyn New Member

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    Jan 21, 2002
    Austin
    Yes, the first thing the cable 'from the street' touches is a POE filter, then the input to the amp.
    As a sidenote, when I took off the POE filter to my modem I got a slight + bump in -dB, so that's good.

    Thanks again everyone.
     
  4. marklyn

    marklyn New Member

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    Jan 21, 2002
    Austin
    Tell me what to check on and I'll report back here. The only thing I know to check is the dB signal for the TA, which is now at -12. I thought that was supposed to be on the high side but so far no problems and signal strength for each channel I've tested thus far is 98-100, so I'll ignore that for now.
     
  5. nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

    3,554
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    Feb 5, 2011
    Cox Cable...
    Settings & Messages>Account & System Info>Tuning Adapter>Tuning adapter Diagnosics> (now the fun starts).

    -12 (down) on a TA is low. +12 would be high. The closer to zero, the better, most of the time, but sometimes works better a little one way, or the other.

    The DVR Diags screen is reading the signal as it is sent to the TiVo, The TA is reading directly what is sent to (and from) the TA, although you use the TiVo to access the TA Diag screens.

    The TA uses a different (standardized) method of measuring signals, and SNR, as opposed to TiVo's bastardized way, with a false SNR. Keep that in mind when comparing them.

    If the TA is running back to a port that isn't designed for the Return Data Channel (RDC/upstream) to pass freely, I'd be amazed if there are no problems. The Tivo only has Forward Data Channel (FDC/downstream) to the tuner and cablecard.

    But, I also don't recommend fixing what isn't broken.

    Look for any dBmV signal levels in the TA Diags, in both directions, and the SNR values that are present. Then get TiVo's DVR Diags values, and let's see what's what.
     
  6. marklyn

    marklyn New Member

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    Jan 21, 2002
    Austin
    I went to the TA diags, status summary screen and one time I saw -9dB, then a few minutes it went to -2dB and hasn't done any more movement. I could not find the snr readings under status summary screen.

    In the Tivo DVR diags, I don't see a dB reading but all of my signal strengths were still 98-100, and my SNR's for each of the six channels listed ranged from 41-45.

    I don't understand what you said in the quote above. Do you mind expanding on that? I have a pic of the amp/splitter in a previous post, are you saying the TA should be on a specific port of the amp? Sorry to be dense.
     
  7. telemark

    telemark New Member

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    Nov 12, 2013
    From Left
    Port 1 - "In", from Cable Company
    Port 2 - "Output", unamplified, designated for upstream devices
    Port 3 - Power Input

    (may not be compatible with upstream devices)
    Port 4 - Amplified Output, Optional Power Input
    Port 5 - Amplified Output
    Port 6 - Amplified Output
    Port 7 - Amplified Output
     
  8. nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

    3,554
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    Feb 5, 2011
    Cox Cable...
    What this guy said.

    If ports 4-7 don't allow the RDC/upstream of the TA to pass backwards through the amp/splitter unhindered, you'll likely have issues with SDV if the TA can't power-through. If it is working very hard to power-through, that can cause problems all on it's own.

    If you call Time Warner and ask them to check the signals from their end, they will be quick to spot a weak return and possibly a low SNR, which will only be visible on their side (just like you can only read downstream SNR on your side). They should be able to read everything, if you get the right person on the phone.

    I'm amazed anything has been working for you, based on the start of this this thread, and what has been revealed so far. Much improvement has been made. If you want to shoot for near perfection, make the call to TW, or just wait and see if any problems creep up with the SDV/TA, now that the MoCA is straightened-out.
     
  9. marklyn

    marklyn New Member

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    Jan 21, 2002
    Austin
    Well, I'd like to believe that the TWC guy that was in my attic and suggested the amp in the first place gave me something that would not be likely to cause these problems, but I know that's not always the case. He did seem knowledgeable about moca & Tivos based on the various conversations we had about both.
    So far I'm good but I'm closely monitoring tx/rx levels, dB and SNR levels at least twice a day just to make sure nothing strange happens.

    I'll call TWC as suggested but can you tell me what, specifically, to ask them to check? Also, if they inquire as to why I'm asking, I just say I want to compare to my levels?

    Thanks again.
     
  10. marklyn

    marklyn New Member

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    Jan 21, 2002
    Austin
    I just remembered that I did see some RDC and FDC levels in one of the TA diags screens but I didn't notice the levels. Is there some particular level, or threshold, I should notice for either one of those?
    Do those related to the potential problem for upstream issues related to the amp?
     
  11. nooneuknow

    nooneuknow TiVo User Since 2007

    3,554
    0
    Feb 5, 2011
    Cox Cable...
    Yes, the potential problem is directly related to the amp in use.

    Unlike the user of a TA, who can only read the received levels, and sometimes how high a level the TA has to transmit, to "push" the return channel through, the cableco can read everything, as in everything you can see, plus the values that show your return signal strength at their end, and the SNR on it.

    It's not complicated (unless you get a lazy rep, or one in the wrong department). All you have to do is ask them to "check all my signals, please". If they want to know why, say "I've been seeing some (whatever) issues on some channels, and want to make sure I'm within the right ranges, and if you see any problems or excessive errors". If the rep you speak with has more questions before willing to take a look, starts talking about truck-rolls, or otherwise seems not willing to do their job, hang up and call back.

    They can do the same for your Cable Modem, as in seeing what the return levels are by the time they get all the way back, the return SNR, plus all the values you can see on your own.

    Yes, the potential for TA issues telemark brought up, I agreed with, and is still an "unknown", is related to if that amp if the right amp for the job. If it was installed before you had a TA, it was at the time (but might no longer be). If it was installed after you got a TA, it should be (in a perfect world, with the right guy installing it). Making that call and accurately reporting back what they say will be easier than writing up a guide and map to every screen and every value you care about. Plus, there's still those values only they can see. They should have no issue repeating things back to you, so that you can write them down. Just tell them you are writing them down, and ask them to read them off accordingly.

    Some amps support return (RDC) signals on all the outputs and/or amplified ports. You seem to have one that has unamplified ports for devices with a RDC, like your cable modem (and the TA), while the amplified ports MIGHT not. Nobody seems sure your amplified ports are designed for a RDC.

    One way to test the questionable ports is to put your cable modem on one of them (or all of them), and compare the RDC power level of your cable modem readings screen. If it spikes being moved to the questionable ports, that's a strong indicator that it's not the best amp for what you are currently using it for. You can expect the downstream levels to spike, due to the amp. But, the RDC (upstream) should stay about the same as it was. That value spiking high, means the CM (or TA) has to strain, just to get the RDC through. Both the straining, and resulting high RDC levels, are not desirable for problem-free (especially in the long-term) operation.

    If you hook up your Cable Modem to the questionable ports, and it can't come up operational (make sure to give it 20 minutes to try), I'd suggest thinking about a different amp, or asking TW to take care of it, since it sounds like they chose it, and installed it.

    Or, again, if all is working well, and you are not having any issues, you can always opt to just hope it stays that way, and skip all this, at least until you run into problems down the road (if you do).

    I'm a perfectionist, and always think down the road. I'm not the "good enough" type (obviously). ;)
     
  12. marklyn

    marklyn New Member

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    Jan 21, 2002
    Austin
    Wow, great information. I'll read and re-read it again to better digest and act upon. I will call TW this weekend for sure and ask about the signals, I'll give everything in place a few days to be sure I don't have any issues.
    Knock on wood but thus far modem signals and TA signal strengths are excellent and my TX/RX numbers are very good (270-280ish) so anything streaming to the mini's seems to be good.

    Thanks again for the valuable information, it won't go to waste, I'll look into in this weekend.
     

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