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Official Comcast CableCard Thread!

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by amjustice, Sep 14, 2006.

  1. Warlord46

    Warlord46 New Member

    Dec 2, 2006
    Miami, FL
    I did not intend to include you at all. Those who do apologize for Comcast's policies are easy to spot, and you certainly are not one of them.
  2. rcr2

    rcr2 It's you, not me.

    Feb 3, 2007
    I've been busy since last week when my CableCards got installed, thought I'd just update everyone on my experience with Comcast.

    After no love over 4 weeks of telephone calls and emails, I sent a letter to the management staff at Comcast detailing my problems with the CableCards and a side issue with having to rent a telephony modem (I have the same exact model, just not in the Comcast inventory).

    My install went smoother than I expected. No screens with card errors on them, but some problems getting the cards authorized and registered at the head office. The techs were good - no real experience with TiVo, but knew their job well and helped with some general signal issues while we waited around.

    I've also gotten a call from corporate offices following up on the install and my rental issue. I haven't seen a bill yet, so I'm waiting on that. Also, I'm still on the old pricing plan, and I'm a bit worried about calling to switch to the new 'triple play' pricing packages they have.

    My only issue has been the cards 'dropping out' (as on this thread ). It's very random.

    I do plan on writing a follow-up letter to those in management I sent the first letter to, as it isn't fair to them for me to raise hell and then not follow up when something has actually been done, even if it hasn't been the best experience to date, I think it's better than many of the horror stories I read about on here.
  3. eingybear

    eingybear New Member

    Feb 9, 2005
    Thanks to all the people who spoke about the $5 HD charge in the SF Bay Area. I'll keep an eye out for it on my cable bill and make sure that it's either not on there or that they will remove it.

    My Oakland, CA truck roll had been scheduled for between 11am and 1pm on Saturday. At 12:57pm, I finally became convinced they were not coming and called up the 1-800-COMCAST number to try to get someone live on the line to ask them if they were late or were going to reschedule. As the phone options came up, I looked out the window and there was the guy, on the phone, about to leave! I quickly ran out and said I was home (he must have knocked on the downstairs door and I hadn't heard him), to please come in.

    He was in the house for about 20 minutes, tops. He knew exactly what he was doing, putting in one card then calling it in, checking the channels, then putting in the next, etc. The only reasons it took more than 5 minutes are that he was put on hold when he called the office to tell them to register the card serial numbers (about 10 minutes total) and that he waited until the cards started to receive the channel information (took about 2-4 minutes with each card) before going on to the next step.

    One of the interesting things is that he seemed to have about 4 cards with him (he was probably going to other houses to set up after mine), so in theory, if one of my cards was bad, he seemed ready to try other cards in his possession.

    Over all, a very good experience. I've checked all the channels I'm interested in, and they seem to work fine so far. I'll keep an eye out to see if I get the channels dropping out or not.

    This move should reduce my cable bill from $62 to about $50. I had previously called to get a 6 month reduction from $81 to $62, because all our house wants is the network channels, The Food Network, BBCA, G4, and the Fox Soccer Network, but the packages didn't really suit us, so they made us keep the Digital Classic + Premier package but gave us a discount.
  4. Sevenfeet

    Sevenfeet Gentle Giant

    Jun 24, 2000
    Nashville, TN
    Nope, the extra $5 charge has us beat. At least the network HD channels are still in the clear here, including INHD. And what's really aggravating about Cablecard in Nashville is that they are free if you DON'T choose digital cable. Which means that they will give them to you only when you don't really need them. Without digital cable, every other channel is either analog or QAM in the clear. Does that beat all?

    Oh yeah....the Miami HD surcharge. Damn that sucks.
  5. bsjd00

    bsjd00 New Member

    Sep 3, 2006
    Do you need 2 coax inputs for 2 cablecards? In other words, will I need to split my cable before the Tivo, or is 1 coax in enough for both cablecards?

    Thanks for any replies...
  6. azitnay

    azitnay Active Member

    Jan 20, 2003
    No, it's a single coax input into the TiVo.

    There is, however, a separate coax input designed to come from an antenna.

  7. bsjd00

    bsjd00 New Member

    Sep 3, 2006
    Thanks for the quick reply!

    One other quick question - can you order PPV over the phone with Comcast? Or do you absolutely need a separate cable box in addition to the 2 cablecards? Oh, and is the answer the same for on-demand movies?
  8. azitnay

    azitnay Active Member

    Jan 20, 2003
    People's mileage seems to vary... There was a poll posted on the subject:


    It would seem from the poll that the majority of people can't use their S3 to record PPV at all, but some can order (through either phone or the cable company's box, obviously not the S3) and then record on the S3.

    Personally, I've never looked into my options, and have no plans to.

  9. bsjd00

    bsjd00 New Member

    Sep 3, 2006
    Thanks, will take a look at the link. BTW, I'm not interested in recording, just getting the PPV broadcast.
  10. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance TCF Club

    Dec 1, 2000
    Silicon Valley
    Comcast (of course) says that YES you have to have one of their boxes for PPV and for Ondemand. However. I also know you can call up and get the PPV to show on "all boxes" including the S3's.

    I personally have the Comcast box and watch my events on the S3 TIVo. It requires a call to Comcast to see it on the TiVo boxes. Otherwise if you order from the Comcast box, it will only show on the Comcast box and not the TiVo boxes... Not sure if I could still call up and ge the PPV events without the Comcast box (havent' tried it) but Comcast says you can't. Not sure I believe them though... :D
  11. sfhub

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    Never doubt Comcast's ability to tack on random fees :)

    Despite the rate card Comcast gave me on the December bill that matches what C3 said, Comcast found a way to add "HDTV Additional Service" fee of $5.

    On my rate card there is no such entry. There is only "HDTV Equipment Fee" of $5. It is clearly for equipment rental because it is listed under the "Equipment" section along with converter boxes and CableCARDs.
  12. MikeCG

    MikeCG New Member

    Jun 23, 2000
    Chicago USA
    I have two S3s, one works fine. The other stopped showing premium channels on one cable card, but continued to work on the other. I called Comcast service hoping to get them to zap my cards (I have two in each set) but as I said, all they will do is send out a cable guy. They are never familiar with what to do, but, in the past, I've sometimes been able to get referred to Tech Support in Tinley Park and someone there, who knows exactly what to do, does it. (Usually takes over a week before they call back, but at least they solve problems.) Last night I noticed the HDMI setting on that Tivo showed HDCP not enabled (only on that set), which I assume is the source of the problem, and both cable cards started blocking the premium channels. I have no idea why one card worked and on didn't if the HDCP was not enabled. Any ideas? I have no idea how the HDCP became disabled, or how to enable it.

    If you can get any input from your contact it would be greatly appreciated.
  13. JaxDomino

    JaxDomino New Member

    Jan 3, 2005
    Ever since I upgraded my Tivo S3 to 8.1, I have been getting a strange CC error that requires that I press Clear on my remote. I called Tivo and they said it had something to do with a setting on my Tivo that Comact controlled. I called Comcast in Jacksonville and they said that they knew of the issue and that their engineers were working on it for over a week. Which would be about the same time I have had the 8.1 update. So I doubt it is related to the 8.1 update. So the tech was really stand-offish. At first not letting me say anything. He told me that there was nothing Comcast could do, and since it was a CableCard issue, not tech could come out and he also couldn't make the change to my account to fix the problem that Tivo told me about. I was pissed. I asked him, well then give me a service credit since I can't see any of my premium channels. He did make the adjustment and was very nice after that. WEIRD!!! So until they "fix" the "problem", I can't record any shows on HBOHD or Encore! Thanks God for OnDemand in the Bedroom.
  14. Roderigo

    Roderigo New Member

    Mar 11, 2002
    Brookdale, CA
    I'm assuming you're talking about the pairing screen popping up when you tune to a copy protected channel, then Tivo is correct. It's possible that Comcast just turned copy protection on, but hasn't properly validated the host/cablecard pairing information in their system. I think I read a post in here that Comcast in Denver just did this, so seems like comcast is turning on copy protection throughout the country.

    To check, tune to the problem channel, and then look at either the cablecard screen or diagnostics screen, and see what the CCI value is. If it's not zero, then the channel has some sort of copy protection on it.

    Next, you need to see if the card has been properly validated. On motorola cards, this is in the conditional access screen. There's a line that says "Host Validation" if it doesn't say "Valid" then that's the problem. I think SA Cards say "CP Auth received" for proper validation. If a card don't show the appropriate thing, the card will never show copy protected channels. Comcast needs to properly enter the host id, card id, and for motorola, data number. And, then send the right message to the card.
  15. AaRdVarK3

    AaRdVarK3 New Member

    Aug 12, 2003
    Just had my FIFTH tech come out. Comcast managed to not mess up like they did with techs 2-4, and they sent him with two new cablecards. Same problem. They blamed the TiVo, and this time I was prepared and had a brand new Series3 that we should try it on. We did that, and we had the same problem. Now to get in touch with the lead tech again and let him know everything we tried.

    I'm severely frustrated, but determined to get this damn thing working.
  16. Mike Malter

    Mike Malter Computer Mutt

    Dec 25, 2000
    San Rafael, CA
    You may have already done this, but don't put both cards in at the same time. Put the first card in and configure it, then put the second card in and configure it.

    Hope this helps.
  17. Mar 1, 2007 #2297 of 9367

    rcr2 It's you, not me.

    Feb 3, 2007
    My SA card in slot 2 keeps getting set to CP Failure. After a reboot, it reverts to CP Auth Received for a period of time. Then tends to fail within a day or so.

    Anyone have experience with this and how responsive Comcast has been to fix it? Is it something that Comcast can fix at the head end, or do they need to send a new card?
  18. Mar 2, 2007 #2298 of 9367

    eingybear New Member

    Feb 9, 2005
    I just got my first bill after swapping the HDDVR for the CCs. I am no longer getting charged for an additional outlet (we still have a set top box for the series 2 in a different room), HD package, or dvr rental fee or whatever the hell it was. I see only a $1.50 charge now, presumably for the second CC, but it's specifically listed out as a TiVo usage charge.

    Weird that they would categorize it so specifically, but I guess it helps for them to gauge how many people are using TiVo rather than their own DVRs.

    There was a truck roll fee, but they waived it in the same bill, so there is a charge then an immediate credit, resulting in $0 for me.
  19. Mar 2, 2007 #2299 of 9367

    mooneydriver New Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    The tech (plus an apprentice) came today and installed the CableCards. It was uneventful and took about 40 minutes (most of which were spent waiting for the Comcast dispatcher to answer the phone and send the hit to the cards). All channels come through fine on either card -- count me as another happy Comcast CableCard customer (for now, at least).
  20. Mar 2, 2007 #2300 of 9367
    Brainiac 5

    Brainiac 5 New Member

    Aug 24, 2003
    Is it definitely just the one in slot 2? Some people are having a problem exactly like this that TiVo is looking into, although as far as I know it would affect both cards.

    Also, I have a channel that causes this problem every time I tune to it. I was getting things on that channel as suggestions, causing the CableCARD to fail quite often. If that's the problem, I think it is a problem at the headend, although I haven't been able to get Comcast to fix mine yet. :(

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