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Official Comcast CableCard Thread!

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

  1. k2exoman

    k2exoman New Member

    Jun 26, 2007
    Follow up on 4th attempt. Tech pulled a tech #3 and called and said he had no equipment, etc... etc... I sort of lost it on him but calmly explained the situation and how unacceptable it was. He spoke with his manager and allotted 6 cards for his morning route.

    5th attempt. After 3+ hours, two cable cards are now working and we are finally able to tune in to all the stuff we pay for, eg. HD channels and everything over channel 100.

    HOWEVER, neither card under the host ID screen says it is authorized. Occasionally when surfing the MMI screen pops up. We ARE able to tune all channels. Do i need to have them 'hit' the card again???! I just don't want them to screw something up again or alter our channels since they are finally 'working.'


  2. oldnacl

    oldnacl New Member

    Mar 23, 2007
    You're suffering what I did after Comcast changed their rate plan and (apparently) deauthorized installed CCs. I took a couple days off work for multiple service calls and finally got them working when a knowledgable woman at the telephone help line pinged the cards between service calls. Now, with cards working, I'm getting freezes, pixelation and audio drop outs.
    I found a series 2 on eBay and if it ever gets shipped, the S3 goes back to Costco. It was fun while it lasted.

    Last Straw.
    I took the CCs to the local Comcrap office this morning to get the cable box they say in their price sheet is included with the "package" I subscribe to. Woman at the desk said (and gave me a printout) that there is another price change (added since the July 1 price increase - dropped the "package price") and my cable bill will increase an additional $6.90. That, aded to the earlier change, increased my monthly bill from $54 to $84 for exactly the same service. I cancelled my entire account! Now I need to find an internet provider.
  3. SLCMike

    SLCMike New Member

    Nov 18, 2003
    Ten months ago in this same thread I detailed the fairly painless experience of getting my S3 working with cable cards from Comcast:


    Unfortunately about two weeks ago our pay channels (HBO, etc.) ceased working on the S3. No problem I thought... My previous CC experience was fairly positive! While the issue is now officially fixed as of today, the unfortunate fact is I endured two weeks of CSR's and technicians who clearly had no idea WTF they were doing. I won't bore you with all of the details as there are plenty in this thread that mirror my own... But suffice it to say that any positive Comcast CC experiences are purely "luck of the draw."

    I have probably spent a minimum of 3 hours on the phone with Comcast, 8 hours waiting for technicians to arrive and 2 hours getting replacement cards from the local office. Almost everyone I dealt with was reasonably polite, but that's not worth much when your problems aren't being solved. I have to say that had all this happened when I was first getting the S3 set up, I might have seriously considered returning it. Unless there's some pending solution to the incompetent CC support at the various cable companies -- TiVo faces a really rough road to wider adoption IMO.

    On the flip side, I am happy to report that our S3 has performed flawlessly for the last 10 months -- much like our S2 which is still powering on after nearly 5 years.
  4. That Don Guy

    That Don Guy Now with more GB

    Mar 13, 2003
    When we last left our story, our mild-mannered S3 owner was trying to get Comcast to realize that one of their techs had taken his Comcast DVR **as requested** and they should stop charging for it...

    Guess what? Finally, I reached somebody who decided I was right after all, and has credited me the DVR box charge made on my current (July-August) bill.

    Oh, and a couple of other things:

    First, there is also a credit for the "HDTV Additional Service". At first, I thought that maybe somebody misunderstood me and had turned off my other HDTV service (in addition to my TiVo S3, I have a Comcast (non-DVR) HDTV cable box in another room). However, when I got home, I discovered that both the S3 and the Comcast box still get all of my HD channels. Maybe I got lucky and they got rid of the charge because the non-DVR box is now the "primary" box, although I was under the impression that I had to pay extra for HDTV anyway. Hopefully, they don't decide that "since he's not paying for HDTV, don't send him the HD channels". (Then again, if that does happen, that's nothing a phone call shouldn't be able to fix.)

    Second, apparently whoever has my old DVR box is into late-night porn, as my "recent charges" now include "Blazin' Brazilians", "Russian Teen Obsession", and "Devinn Lane Exposed" - all airing starting between 11:45 PM and 12:55 AM on late Wednesday night. (The billing operator says the charges will be removed, but I hesitate to see what's going to be on the bill tomorrow...)

    -- Don
  5. c3

    c3 TiVoholic

    Sep 8, 2000
    That should really be an equipment rental charge, not a programming service charge, although some Comcast offices insist on charging that fee for CableCards. In your case, you should have one "HDTV fee" for the HD set top box.
  6. DocNo

    DocNo New Member

    Oct 10, 2001
    Well, I'm still without cablecards :rolleyes:

    A very nice tech showed up on Tuesday - without cable cards :p He did hook up my phone. It was a relatively painless process. He wasn't able to explain to me why he didn't have the cable cards - sigh.

    Then about a half an hour after he left, my Internet died. It took two phone calls and the rest of the day, but in the end I ended up unhooking my existing cable modem and just used the one in the phone router.

    So the phone guy said he would reschedule for Wednesday from 5PM - 8 PM for me. Except no-one showed :p

    So I called, and rescheduled again for Friday night 5 PM - 8 PM. I get a call from the tech confirming the appointment, only to find she didn't have cable cards because the ticket wasn't entered correctly in the computer, and it was after 5 and she wouldn't be able to get any that night :mad:

    Now keep in mind, each time I talked with someone at Comcast, I had them enter in to the notes on my account that 1) I needed two cable cards 2) they were for a Series three Tivo 3) to please bring some spares.

    I'm going out of town for a week - I guess I'll pick it up when I get back. :down: So far Comcast is coming off as very incompetent - I know, what a surprise :rolleyes:

  7. oldnacl

    oldnacl New Member

    Mar 23, 2007
    End of story (at least I think so). Installed a DSL modem I got from AT&T yesterday. After a couple rebates it will be 1/3 the cost per month for the first year and 2/3 of what Comcast was charging for Cable internet (I owned the modem) subsequently. I cannot see any difference in page loading speed from cable - I'm on the 1.5mbps plan - one above the bottom in price. I went back to Comcast on Friday and ordered just the cheapest digital package with a HD DVR (SA8300HD, like I had before but with their new remote) and the invoice price is $2 less than my neighbor is paying for the same service. Go figure. The S3 went back to Costco and my eBay purchased TiVo Series 2 dual tuner should arrive on Tuesday. I think I'm in fat city with a working HD DVR, the ability to copy a show to DVD from the DVR and simultaneously watch something else (a MAJOR shortfall IMHO of the S3 design) and a TiVo for the stuff I usually watch on SD, like news, Daily Show etc. And I'm $40 a month ahead! Of course, I'll miss the S3.
    It's been nice chatting in this group. Thanks to everyone for their help and comments. See ya in the Series 2 forums.
  8. cokray

    cokray New Member

    Apr 26, 2005
    Comcast is incompetent! Not a big newsflash, I know. I'm having difficulties with my Series 3 cable cards of a nature that I've not seen described elsewhere in this thread.

    Here's the summary: starting a month or so ago, I lost my ability to tune premium channels on my Tivo. But wait -- don't stop reading there! I knew this might happen, and from the warning sent by Tivo and from what I learned reading this board I knew it was the copy protection/host ID issue. I called Comcast, the phone person knew nothing, so they dispatched a tech. The tech actually knew about the issue, and was able to fix one of the two CCs. However, he did something to the other one that not only didn't fix the premiums, but disabled all channels on that CC above like 30. He said it was a bad CC but didn't have a replacement. A new tech came out a few days later with a replacement, but after activating it, it did the same thing as the old one, only tuning up to channel 30.

    Since then Comcast has become worthless. They keep saying they don't know what's wrong or how to fix it. They keep trying to blame the Tivo. I find it hard to believe that the Tivo would have anything to do with this, somehow they screwed up my account or something on their end. Does anybody out there have any ideas what might have caused this? It seems I have to help Comcast fix things, otherwise they never will. I'm in San Francisco, if that helps anyone's diagnosis...

    Many thanks!

  9. bicker

    bicker Gruff

    Nov 9, 2003
    TiVo's technical support should be willing to work with cable companies to support their mutual customers. I'd aim your efforts in that direction.
  10. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

    Oct 17, 2003
    I had similar problems when I first had Comcast install my cards for S3. The only way I could prove to them that it wasn't the cc, nor the Tivo was by convincing the on-site tech to get one of their DVR's from his truck (he happened to have one with him) and hook it up to the TV. He did, and it had the same missing channels. He then reinstalled the cc's and argued with his telephone support until they finally authorized the account proerly.
  11. JPShinn

    JPShinn New Member

    Aug 24, 2004
    Here's a new one. All of a sudden, I've lost some of my basic cable channels. That is, I do great on HiDef channels and most of my other "premium" and "extended" channels, but I've lost Channels 2, 4, 5, 7 and 9 (Fox, KRON, CBS, ABC and PBS here in the Bay Area). Comcast says it's a Tivo problem. Any takers with thoughts?

  12. cgould

    cgould New Member

    Dec 28, 2002
    lol! No way for Tivo to "lose" analog channels.
    More like they screwed up the cablecard mappings for analog to digital simulcast, and/or messed up your account's access to those digital versions. Comcast is messed up.
    You can tune the missing channels and check out the diagnostics or CC conditional access pages etc and verify it says "QAM*" rather than analog for the channels, etc..
    or pop the cablecards and retune the analog manually to prove it..
  13. sfhub

    sfhub New Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    Not getting premiums (your first problem that they fixed) is probably the copy protection/pairing issue that you were aware of. The likely permutation here is the system knew which tier, expanded basic, digital cable, etc. you were supposed to get, but the cards weren't paired properly.

    Your new problem with no channels above 30 sounds like an account authorization problem for the card in question, meaning the system doesn't know you are supposed to get expanded basic, digital cable, etc. on that card.
  14. patysc

    patysc New Member

    Jul 16, 2007
    I have a problem that is two fold. First, right after the cable guy left I realized cable card 2 is not working. When I go to test the channels on it I get nothing so I figure I can call about that and hopefully they can get it fixed. The second thing may be related to the cable card but I can't figure it out. I went into the channel settings and checked off all the channels I receive and I get those channels, but the tivo doesn't have any information on the programming for the channels - it just says To Be Announced. I manually set up a call for a download and still nothing. Has anyone had this problem?
  15. drcos

    drcos HD where available

    Jul 20, 2001
    If this is the first time you have done the Guided Setup with those channels, they will show 'To Be Announced' until the TiVo finishes indexing the guide information. Even if you force a download, the TiVo still has to index the information it receives, which can take a while depending on how many channels you have.
  16. chelsel

    chelsel New Member

    Jul 10, 2007
    Fairly smooth install but overall disappointed in virtually no cost savings. Charges are:

    Cable Card 1: $0.00
    Cable Card 2: $2.00
    HD Service Cable Card 1: $6.95
    HD Service Cable Card 2: $6.95
    Digital Service (Channels above 100): $19.95
    Basic Service: "free" included in rent

    I was previously using a Scientific Atlanta 8300HD. Based on my calculations it will take 12.5 years to recoup the cost of the Tivo. Too bad the Tivo is unlikely to last that long :-(

    Anybody else have better luck with Comcast in Boca/Delray?

  17. drcos

    drcos HD where available

    Jul 20, 2001
    Well here in SWFL on my second month, I have a 41.70 "ADd'l Digital Eqp with ON DEMAND Comcast HDTV Service" charge. I have called this evening to question it and was first told that it was for a digital outlet. After some discussion, I was put on hold and then told:
    1. There is an additional charge for "HD-enabled" cable cards. I pointed out there was no such thing.
    2. There is an additional charge for the digital channels (above 100). I said, yes there is, it's already on the bill as 'Digital Preferred.'
    3. Well, it's like a box fee, even though you don't have a box. We then mutually decided that had to be b.s., as it even sounded illegal (at least hinky) to the rep.
    I pointed out that I had previously discussed the cable card fees with another rep, back in June, and that the first card in each box was free and the second was $1.50. There is in fact a $1.50 "Add'l Cable Card" charge on the bill.

    Then I was told they would have to 'research' and call me back, but the charge would certainly not be that much. I called later and found out that they were still looking into it.
  18. eberhard

    eberhard New Member

    Jul 20, 2007
    My experience. Atlanta, Comcast, July 2007

    I am actually starting this adventure of getting my cable cards installed in Atlanta.
    WOW after reading this thread, I really do not expect much positive things happening

    Here we go.

    Called 1-800 COMCAST, got through the computer, their phone was ringing ... Disconnected.


    This time I got a person.
    Very nice CSR. I told her I need a specialist who has done TIVO Installations before and I need him to bring more than 2 cards. Her answer was that all her people are specialized and know what they are doing.
    Then we made a date. 3 weeks later??!!. They did not have any earlier appointments available…. Great! Finished the call.

    To check if the CSR has entered the right information I thought I’d better call back and make sure they understood that I need 2 cards....

    They actually had 2 cards on file. So far so good.
    $18.25 extra charge monthly. Because of the HD channels

    Now we wait.

    The day was finally here. Appointment was scheduled between 11am and 2pm. The guy showed up at 2:30pm after I had to call Comcast to ask were he was.
    Anyway he was here.

    I asked if he had ever installed a Tivo.
    No… Of course not!
    Did he bring 2 cards?
    No. Why would you need 2 cards? He asked.

    Fortunately he had a second one in the car.

    I told him that a lot of cards fail or are already programmed for other users. He just grinned and said he never heard that before.
    I gave him 2 descriptions what to do. The sheet that came with the Tivo and a printout from this forum with exact instructions. He looked at me funny why I would give him that and briefly looked it over and put the first card into slot 2.
    I had bolded the section with :”START WITH SLOT 1”
    So I read the instructions to him. I wanted this to work. He called his contact at Comcast and they seemed to know nothing. I heard him say at least 20 times: "...because a Tivo has 2 cards...".
    After a long back and forth we got the first card working. They refused to send a hit to the first card before they have the data for the second. After some fight they did send the hit.

    The second card was broken. Did not work at all and did not even give us a host number. I mentioned a brief “I told you so”. He should have brought more that 2 cards as I requested on the phone. He said he only gets a certain amount of cards in the morning and can not pick up additional cards during the day otherwise he would come back later. He had to come back the next day.

    Fortunately my boss let me work from home again so I could be there. And again he was an hour late and the whole drama with his contact started again. This time the card activated quite quickly but only for the lower basic channels. No digital or HD channels. They obviously set the second card on basic subscription. They seem to argue with every installation. No wonder it takes 3 weeks to get an appointment. After a lot of back and forth again we got the card working on all channels.

    Everything that was mentioned in this threat before is still happening with Comcast. They do not care, obviously. The guy was nice and all but I would rather have obnoxious and knowledgeable than nice and clueless.
  19. drcos

    drcos HD where available

    Jul 20, 2001
    Meanwhile, the battle with Comcast over billing (overbilling?) continues...
    Talked with a gentleman yesterday to cancel a truck roll, discussed the billing problems (41.90 for 'additional digital equipment'), and he 'fixed' the bill.
    This morning, two cards did not get 'digital preferred.' Talked to another gentleman, who said the 'fixed' bill is incorrect. He did however, fix the cards. So now I am going into the local office tomorrow, armed with the current price list, the printouts from their own web site on cablecard pricing, and my bill to fix this once and for all. This is the latest bs from Comcast:

    Their pricing list and website indicate that once I pay for programming, the second cable card on the first outlet is $1.91 maximum ($1.50 here). The additional digital outlet charge is $6.95 which includes the first cablecard in the second Tivo. The second cable card in the second Tivo is the other $1.50.

    Their current 'logic' as it was explained to me today, was that since I didn't have a box, I had to pay the same price as if I had their DVR box, and three additional devices (cable cards). So they say that I am in fact paying what 'I think I should be paying' except that it is broken out separately...The fees are just listed differently from their pricing list.

    Now the worry is that even if I get them to straighten out the bill as per their own price list, that will screw up the cards and when I call to get the cards straightened out, they will re-screw the bill.

    FIOS cannot get here soon enough.
  20. TerpBE

    TerpBE Go Terps!

    Jan 23, 2003

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