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Official Comcast CableCard Thread!

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

  1. Aug 9, 2007 #3181 of 9367

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    The computer system was set up to automatically switch to digital with the free (for a year) DCT-700 in my case. I was on the phone with the CSR and within a few minutes of placing the order (while I was still on the line discussing something else), noticed my S3s switched to using ADS digital. I asked them if they had switched me to digital and they said all they did was place the order for the DCT-700s.
  2. Aug 9, 2007 #3182 of 9367

    dipdewdog New Member

    May 9, 2005
    Washington, DC
    Just because I'm new to this whole thing, how did you notice that it had changed? Was there an on-screen message or were you looking in the diagnostics?
  3. Aug 9, 2007 #3183 of 9367

    aindik Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2002
    I'm guessing, but if the TiVo gives you the option of choosing a recording quality for a recording on that channel, then the channel is an analog channel.
  4. Aug 9, 2007 #3184 of 9367

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    Messages & Settings->Account & System Information->Diagnostics

    If it says QAM, it is digital.

    That's besides I'm able to notice the different picture artifacts visually, macroblocking vs analog noise.
  5. Aug 9, 2007 #3185 of 9367

    dipdewdog New Member

    May 9, 2005
    Washington, DC
    I figured that much out, that's how I knew it was analog in the first place.

    Thought so, the analog picture always looks 'softer' to me.
  6. Aug 9, 2007 #3186 of 9367

    c3 TiVoholic

    Sep 8, 2000
    Yes, after a few months, without asking for it.
  7. Aug 9, 2007 #3187 of 9367

    mike_camden New Member

    Dec 11, 2006
    Finishing post for my TivoHD story. Comcast finally got it figured out today. Props to the tech who spent a lot of time and kept calling back to get different dispatchers until he found one who could help him.

    On a different note, Tivo as a company is absolutely awesome. They called me at home twice today to ensure that everythng was working out, and if not to see what they could do to make it work. Props to them as a company.
  8. Aug 9, 2007 #3188 of 9367

    AGBulls New Member

    Jul 30, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    Mike, I'm really excited to hear you had such a good experience with tivo -- i did too. yesterday, during my lunch hour at work a Tivo CSR spent the entire hour with me on the phone. Mind you, she was on one ear and my wife was on the other -- at home with Comcast. She was totally ok with it, totally friendly and extremely knowledgable. Tivo has clearly done some kick ass training. Having people do that at your Corporate headquarters must mean big $ - and it works.

    Last night, when I got home and found things still not working I called Tivo back. I got a different guy entirely, but just as helpful. he was able to validate that my two cards were installed properly by checking the conditional access screen. soon after, we got on a three way conf call with comcast everything was worked out.

    :up: :up: :D :up: :up:
  9. superpac

    superpac New Member

    Aug 7, 2007
    Atlanta, GA
    Well my story ends happily. I bought the TiVo HD on Tuesday night, picked up the cablecard and installed it Wednesday and by Thursday evening all my channels were active. Getting the pixelization problem but so far I've only noticed it a few times so far. Glad to have TiVo back in my living room. My experience has been eerily good. I guess I'm one of the lucky ones. :D
  10. Langree

    Langree The Gimp

    Apr 29, 2004
    my experrience is exactly like yours.
  11. Langree

    Langree The Gimp

    Apr 29, 2004
    I spoke to soon, sometime last night I lost HDNET and HDNET MOVIES.

    The only reason I noticed was because of my Wiseguy and Hogan's Heroes SP's.

    I'll deal with it after work.
  12. fishboy

    fishboy New Member

    Aug 19, 2002
    As a follow up to my earlier post, I had an appointment scheduled with Comcast today between 11-2. Here's what happened....

    9:30am - Cable guy (Comcast employee, not contractor) shows up early and we get started. After following the instructions and getting to a point where we could see the digital channels and not the 2-99 analogs, we popped out the cards and reboot the Tivo. After re-inserting the cards, the person on the other end of the phone line talking to the cable guy "hit" the cards and they began to download "EMM" up to 39. Not quite sure what that means, but when they showed 39, we checked the channels and everything was working. From that point, we checked the second card, hit it again, saw the count up to 39 EMM and then all the channels worked! That took us about 1.5 hours - mostly because neither of us had done it before.

    11:00am - we started on my second TivoHD. We followed the exact same procedure as for the first box, including downloading firmware, configure the cards in the Comcast system, then we could see the Digital channels, but not analog. We pulled the cards out, rebooted Tivo, reinserted the cards, had the guy on the phone "hit" the cards again so that we sawy the EMM go up to 39, then everythng worked. The second one only took about 30 minutes.

    So all-in-all a good experience with an inexperienced CableCARD installer. He was a sharp guy, but had never seen a CableCard work and had never seen a Tivo. At that point he asked me why I wouldn't just use the Comcast DVR. So, I took the opportunity to educate him on Tivo and show him it features. He was floored by all the cool stuff that it could do. I told that he should expect more and more Tivo installs since the latest TivoHD is so affordable.

    So, I sent him on his way with my two SA8300HD DVR boxes. I can't tell you how happy I am to see those things out of my house and Tivo is back home.

    For those of you that want to know more specifics about my setup here they are:
    - Two (2) TivoHD boxes
    - Four (4) Scientific Atlanta SCards
    - Digital Basic channels
    - I'm a former Adelphia customer that was acquired by Comcast last year
    - Comcast Forsyth/Bartow is my channel lineup even though I am in Cherokee County. This is important for those of you in my area since I originally selected the "Comcast" option since it appeared that the channels matched up. That was okay when I was only viewing the analog channels (ch2-99), but the digital channels (100 and up) were completely different.
    - Comcast's network in this area does not support any Motorola products (box or CC)
    - I am seeing some pixelation issues and a few audio dropouts, but I'm hoping they are going to be fixed in an upcoming release (as discussed here) and/or be fixed when the full program line up is completed its "processing". It could be wishful thinking on the latter.

    In any case, I'm a happy camper and look forward to a few "clean up" software updates from Tivo.
  13. weshsu

    weshsu New Member

    Aug 10, 2007
    I'm new to the "real" TiVo world and this community. I've been a DirecTiVo customer for about 6-7 years now. I did the math, read a lot on the Internet about DirecTV's HD and Comcast's HD offerings, and I came to the conclusion that it's better to go with TiVos. In about 1 year, the savings in service fees (versus my current DirecTV, Verizon, Comcast combination) would pay for the TiVo hardware. Even if it didn't, I really wanted the superior TiVo experience.

    So, I recently bought a TiVo HD and a Series3. When I scheduled the installation at the local office, I asked the person about M-Cards. She had no clue what they were. She asked a technical manager there, who also had no clue. I figured it was because Comcast acquired Adelphia a few months ago and perhaps Adelphia's hardware/staff knowledge was a bit behind that of Comcast's.

    Comcast came out on Wednesday and lo and behold, the tech brought two M-Cards! He confirmed that I got a picture on the TiVo HD but didn't confirm it on the S3 since he didn't want to wait for the "acquiring channel information" phase.

    Later that day, I didn't think much of it when I turned on the TV with the TiVo HD and was greeted with a gray screen. I rebooted the box and all was well. The S3 never finished acquiring channels though.

    Yesterday I was greeted with a gray screen again. I called TiVo tech support and they determined that the box was bricked. OK, not much I can do with that.

    Now I focused my attention to the S3. It was still refusing to gather channel information. After finding this thread, I called the 800 number a few times and tried to convince them to do an "Init, Hit, and Refresh". I got all sorts of different answers from, we can only do a hit to we can't troubleshoot cards. I scheduled an appointment for next Tuesday. I tried again this morning but still got nowhere.

    The Tuesday appointment wasn't good enough for me. I work across the parking lot of my local Comcast office, so I walked over there and they dispatched a Comcast employee to my house 3 hours later.

    I told him the story and that I now have (what I believe) to be one good M-Card and one good TiVo. So, I asked him to pair the card to the S3. I also told him about the "Init, Hit, and Refresh" and he said there's only 1 signal they can send. It's all the same. Who am I to argue with the tech? After talking to 2-3 people, he finally got a hold of someone who knew what they were doing. He verified the pairing and then...wait for it...did an Init and Hit. I don't know if there really is a refresh step. But, all is working on the S3 now (knock on wood...I thought the same of my TiVo HD yesterday until I got home).

    When the replacement TiVo HD arrives he told me to contact the local office directly and talk to the guy who fixed it today.

    I have to give TiVo props for how they handled my service call. They're overnighting a brand new unit and covering shipping both ways. You can't ask for much more than that. What they couldn't promise is WHEN they'd actually ship it. :) So, it may still be a week before I get it.

    While it seems that most people at Comcast are clueless about TiVos and CableCards/M-Cards, everyone who I dealt with at the local office seemed to be trying their best. Their best hasn't been enough to resolve the issues until this afternoon, but I'm not going to slam them over it. At least the local office did what they could to get me up and running ASAP. Going through the 800 number was pretty much useless. Time to go cancel that Tuesday appointment...
  14. jlib

    jlib Lean Forward

    Nov 21, 2002
    It is not clear from your description but you do know the the S3 will need two cards, right? You originally mentioned that they brought 2 M-Cards for your S3 and HD. Only one M-Card is needed in the HD, though.

    As well he shouldn't. I wish TiVo would update their instructions so users would not inadvertently do a Guided Setup during Cable Card install.
  15. daver22

    daver22 New Member

    Jan 1, 2004
    After reading all these threads I figured there was a 5% chance I would get my new TivoHD working. Comcast had one snafu with an appt prior to cablecards being in stock. But came Friday (instead of Monday). Guys came in (one experienced, one new) and they had a brand new Motorola M-Card. I had done the initial set-up getting all my analog channels w/o issue.

    He popped the card in and the box immediately saw it as an M-Card. They had two, but I explained I only need one since it was a multi-stream card. They called for the pairing, took about 10-15 minutes. After that - we tried a couple of channels and everything was working fine! They weren't here more than 30 min total.

    I had to do a Guided Set-Up again. Took awhile, but I think that is because it sees so many more channels. Maybe 30 min or so. After that - everything was fine.

    The pixelization issue hasn't occured to speak of. Now and again for a second, but I had that with the comcast box. Usually a field camera when watching sports. Other channels just fine. The family is excited to have the Tivo interface back instead of that crappy Comcast DVR.

    Less than one day of use - but so far it couldn't have gone better.
  16. W Auggie H

    W Auggie H Tivo Enthusiast

    Oct 11, 2001
    I just had a successful CableCard install on my new TivoHD yesterday. I was a bit worried going into this based on everything I had heard about the install process. I was even more worried when they got here and found out that I had a new guy in training on this run.

    The Trainer was actually very knowledgeable and very much understood what TiVo and Tivo HD was. In fact they had done a TiVo HD install just the day before. I was happy to see that they knew exactly what to do and did admit that the CableCard were the main issue with installs of this nature.

    The rookie did have some issues but it ended up being the fault of the lady at the service desk trying to activate the cards on my account. At one point I totally lost my internet because the tech on the phone somehow deleted my cable modem.

    In the end, we did actually get a successful install and I am happy to report that picture and all look great. I am still playing around with the new box but in general I am very happy to finally have and HD TiVo. I fact, I recorded "School of Rock" last night in HD and it looks great!
  17. jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

    Apr 15, 2004
    Denver area
    For anyone having difficulty getting a CableCARD paired for a self-install - if the initial CSR can't enter the data ID to pair the card, have them call dispatch to do it.

    They will need the Host ID, the Data ID and the serial number of the CableCARD. Some will want the UA (Unit Address) of the card.
  18. gardavis

    gardavis New Member

    Nov 24, 2001
    My HD is now set up.

    I mentioned earlier that on the 1st trip, the cable guy didn't bring any cards, so that was productive.

    The next night, the guy brought 3 S-Cards instead of M-Cards I requested. Well, that's not a big issue. One of the 3 cards worked. It was put into slot 2 after trying a while on the slot 1 card. It came up very quickly. After figuring out only the one card worked, he moved it to slot 1 and left me.

    It was a few more days till I got the 3rd visit. During that time, I hobbled along with one card plus my antenna so Tivo could record 2 at once that way. Sometimes, it got confused and tried to use or record from 2 cable sources so one came up gray. It did not seem to know that the empty slot could not be used.

    Yesterday, my 3rd visit, the S-Card worked and was init'ed pretty quickly. Each visit was a different guy. The 3rd had his own Tivo install sheet.

    It seems that it is important that the remote person know what he is doing and if you have that, he can direct the home installer through the steps even if he is basically clueless. Also, it helps to have the cable guy bring the cable cards, especially working cards:)

    Gary Davis
  19. jmpage2

    jmpage2 Active Member

    Jan 20, 2004
    And what would probably be even better would be to offer customers who are not morons the option of picking up their own cable cards and providing the info to get the cards paired.
  20. drcos

    drcos HD where available

    Jul 20, 2001
    Venice FL
    One could argue that as Comcast customers we are all morons, but seeing as how I have little choice...

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