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Official Comcast CableCard Thread!

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

  1. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    It also says "Disclaimer: Regulated Prices quoted above may not apply in all markets. Please call 1-800-COMCAST to learn more about Regulated Prices for your area."

    The six cables cards I had with Comcast between December 2006 and November 2007 cost me nothing per month, but if I can get them down to $1.91 a month I will be pleased. The less it costs the better since it's only for a few channels that I will be watching.
  2. Hamstring

    Hamstring New Member

    Feb 12, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    Honestly, I just got a Tivo HD box and can't get the cards set up properly. If this doesn't get fixed fast on a first visit its not worth it. Tivo and the cable companies need to get their crap together. No way I should pay around 300 dollars for something I can't plug and play.
  3. telcoman

    telcoman Telcoman

    Dec 27, 2007
    Central NJ
    I set up my new Series 3 HD Tivo that arrived last Wednesday. The Comcast installer showed up on time as promised last Thursday. I previously visited my local Comcast office where I was told that they do not have M Cards.
    Well the installer showed up with an M Card and had no trouble acivating it
    Two weeks ago Comcast called me and offered a digital tier package for $1 more a month. They shipped out a Motorola digital box that failed to activate after over an hour on the phone with tech support. I received a new used General Instrument box that was difficult to activate.
    Thats when I found out you need a home run direct RG6 cable with a good strong signal with no splitters in order for digital boxes and Tivo's to activate properly.

  4. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    I never had a problem in 2006 with my Comcast digital signal with it being split 3 ways and activation. The only problem then was getting a tech and a person at the headend that knew what they were doing.
  5. b_scott

    b_scott TiVo Fan

    Nov 27, 2006
    chicago, il
    looks like i'm getting charged $1.50 for my M-card. I have two boxes and an M-card. i guess that's right. one box free, one box $2.99, then $1.50 for one M-card.
  6. optomos

    optomos New Member

    Mar 21, 2008
    I had a lot of problems setting up the cable cards. I bought my HD Tivo on Friday and had it setup by Saturday and then called Comcast to request the cards. They were able to setup an intaller for Monday between 11 & 2, but thats when all the fun began.

    The Cable guy had installed the cards and I had someone else at home to wait for them while I was at work. When I got home I noticed I had only one HD channel. I notice a message from Tivo about doing another Guided Setup so I did and the only thing I saw after that was a gray screen. Three hours later, on the phone between Comcast and Tivo I still had nothing and Comcast had to setup another service request for a tech to come out again.

    Today I came home from work and they had it fixed. I'm not to sure what they did to fix it, but they were at my house 2 hours on Monday and 3 1/2 hours today. They actually had 2 cable guys at my house today trying to fix it with one that came later in the day because he was suppose to have some experience with Tivo. One thing I noticed was on Monday they had installed 2 M-cards instead of 2 single or just 1 M-card[​IMG]

    Now, I just can't wait to see my bill.
  7. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    Never give the cable guy the TiVo remote. Always navigate the screens yourself and the cable card installs will go much, much faster.
  8. brentmid

    brentmid New Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Since I used this thread to help me decide to switch to TiVo HD on Comcast, I figured I'd post my experience. Most relevant is the one small glitch regarding a low-pass filter. Text below is from my blog because I didn't feel like retyping anything.

    So after almost 10 years, I am saying goodbye to DirecTV. Last weekend, my HR10-250 DirecTiVo's hard drive finally died. And since DirecTV and TiVo no longer work together on the High-Def stuff, I had to drop DirecTV. I just love the TiVo interface too much. So for any dummies at DirecTV who might happen to read this, you lost a long time customer because you tried to push your own inferior DVR on the world.

    I went out and bought a TiVo HD at Best Buy, and all things considered, the whole switch over was much easier than I had expected. I bought the box on Friday and the Comcast guy was out to my house with a multistream CableCard on Sunday. I made the appointment by walking into the Hudson, MA Comcast office. They were very friendly and took great notes for my appointment request - specifically my request for an M-Card. The install was painless - I think they have finally educated some techs on how to do these installs.

    There was one glitch. After the tech had left and I was surfing around, I noticed that certain HD channels weren't coming in. They were spread out, but all were HD (things like Discovery, SciFi, Animal Planet, Fox Sports New England). I tried calling support and they did the whole init, hit, refresh thing on the card, but no luck. So another Comcast tech came out on Monday. After finally convincing the guy that the problem wasn't the cable card, we reached the conclusion that it was an RF problem. And of course, his first guess what that it was something wrong with my own wiring job in the house. So after I showed him that the problem still occured when we hooked up right to where the coax entered the house I managed to convince him to go outside and check the street. Turns out that the guy who installed my interent hookup four years ago installed a low-pass filter on the line in the street (obstensibly to keep me from stealing cable). So that was cutting out all those HD channels that were above a certain frequency. Thirty seconds later, filter removed, all the channels came in and they are working like a champ.

    So other than the dummy tech from Monday who wouldn't listen to his customer (because tech's think all customers are stupid) spending 2 hours to do what should have taken 2 minutes, things have gone well and I am happy to be watching NESN in HD on my TiVo.

    Moral - If you're missing a block of channels - check for filters everywhere between the street and your box.

    I guess I'll just keep my fingers crossed about the bill...
  9. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    For a new install that is the first thing they are supposed to check. Around here they disconnect the cable at the box and put somtiype of block in the connector that you need a special too to remove. When I had Comcast connected to a TiVoHD last week(I only dropped Comcast in Novemeber and they had my line disconnected the day after I canceled service). Any way I saw the tech taking this block out with a special too, plus putting a taping flag on it as well. So it is evident if anybody tries to tamper with the cable and get free cable. OF cours the box that it is in is unlocked so anyone could have access to it from the 6 condos at mmy building that it services.
  10. Gregor

    Gregor Active Member

    Feb 18, 2002
    Unfortunately the Comcast techs all too often do not listen to the customer. My last S3 install was a fairly frustrating experience as the tech had never done a Tivo install, and refused to listen when I told him what had to be done. He decided early on it was a signal issue (although the other Tivo I had was working fine) and decided I needed all new wiring in the house (wrong) and a new line run to the house from the terminal block outside. I ended up pointing out to him that his frequent swapping of cards had changed the numbers he was reading to the tech on the phone, and once he got that corrected, things magically worked.

    It sucks because the S3 and HD are a great product, and the cable company's incompetence on the installs hurts Tivo's rep.
  11. eric_mcgovern

    eric_mcgovern New Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Quick question for everyone out there in Comcast land.

    I recently just turned on the premium channels (HBO, Showtime, etc.). For whatever reason my CableCARDs were never paired, so they just popped up the lovely black and grey screen.

    I called Comcast and had a VERY nice lady who knew exactly what I needed and hooked me up. Problem is, while one of the cards got the signal, it still didn't pair correctly. I have 4 cards total, the 2 cards in my TiVoHD paired just fine, in my Series 3 one card paired the other just doesn't seem to like it. The interesting thing, the one that wouldn't pair did get the message from Comcast, because it popped up giving me an error (which is what all the other cards did).

    Has anyone had a "bad card" i.e. one that just wouldn't pair? The CSR said it happens a lot and I just need to swing by the office and pickup a new card. Could it be a bad slot in the Series 3? Just wondering what people's experiences are with this.

  12. drhankz

    drhankz New Member

    Jan 14, 2008
    Salem NH
    Lots and lots of bad cards.

    Originally I had (6) S cards and it took 9 to get six good ones.

    Then I upgraded to (6) M Cards - they are better - it only too 7
    to get SIX good ones.
  13. Gregor

    Gregor Active Member

    Feb 18, 2002
    What's the error code it's giving you? 161-4 is a 'good' error and can be ignored.

    It could easily be a bad card. Usually it is a simple case of the numbers not being read back correctly.

    If they're willing to pair the cards for you over the phone, take the card that you know is good, and put it in the other slot. Then you can go from there.

    One thing to check is the signal strength and see if it's about the same on each card...
  14. eric_mcgovern

    eric_mcgovern New Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Yep, the error every card gave was a 161-4 error. Even the "bad" card gave this error, but the pairing screen still shows it as not being paired. She read back the numbers for card 1 (bad card) three times, hit the card five times. Each time she sent the hit, it showed the error but still no pairing.

    Since I can just run down to the office and get a new card and have it paired over the phone would probably be easier. I don't want to mess with the good card :) I don't remember the specifics, but when I first had Comcast installed one of the cards was bad in my Series 3 (wouldn't do anything), so maybe the other was bad all along, but I would have never known it due to never having to deal with the whole pairing thing...
  15. eric_mcgovern

    eric_mcgovern New Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    LOL...guess I was lucky on my install, took 5 cards to install 4. Hope when I pick up a new card at the office it is a good one.
  16. MichaelK

    MichaelK New Member

    Jan 10, 2002
    not sure if this is the correct place but here goes-

    I had a small cable company that set all my digitals (except locals) with the CCI byte of 0x02 so no MRV for me.

    Well the comcast borg took over.

    So I'm wondering what's the current status with comcast setting flags- is there a coherent policy against this so I can complain up the food chain? Or is it still hit and miss depending on the head end engineer's whims?
  17. hey4ndr3w

    hey4ndr3w TiVo Newbie! Waaaah!

    Apr 24, 2007
    Near Washington DC
    Eight appointments so far to hook my jacked up Series 3 HD Tivo to Comcast, and it's still not working. Huge swaths of channels in the line-up show just flat black screens. No error messages, just black.

    Three appointments were no-shows, including this morning. On appointment #7, the tech said he found the problem and the correct channel line-up would be downloaded in a few minutes, and he ran for the door. Nope. On appointment #6, I had to stop the tech from inserting the multi-stream cable card backwards.

    DirecTV is starting to look pretty good again, even though you can't do all the boss stuff with the DirecTV version of Tivo that you can do with the Series 3. However, right now, just getting the channels you're supposed to sounds really attractive.

    Has anyone in Washington DC succeeded in getting Tivo and Comcast to work together correctly? HALP!
  18. CharlesH

    CharlesH Member

    Aug 29, 2002
    Sacramento CA area
    161-4 just means that the card received a hit request which told it to initialize, and that is what it is in the process of doing. This is why it is called a "good" error. Now if it never gets out of that state, then you have a problem.
  19. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    I'm in NorthernVA and had 6 cards installed in 2006. The main issue then was just getting the tech to get in contact with the correct person at the head end. I dropped Comcast in November 2007 but just last month I re-connected one TiVoHD to comcast to get the HD that FIOS doesn't have yet(like SciFiHD). It only took the tech a few minutes and HBOHD and the other HD channels were all working properly. Plus I do all the TiVo buton presses, card insertions, and cable disconnect(so they can measure the signal strength) myself. I don't let the tech touch any of my equipment and it always goes much faster.
  20. laria

    laria Librocubicularist

    Sep 7, 2000
    Seacoast, NH
    Quick question, and I'm sure this is probably answered way back. Is there some standard definition of an "additional outlet"?

    I just noticed that as of my January bill, instead of being charged $2.75 x 3 for each additional cablecard in my 2 S3's that are attached to 1 tv, I am now being charged $5.00 x 3 for "additional outlets".

    I read the FAQ on their website, the one about $1.91 for the second card. It says the first card in the second device is free under the additional outlet fee and then the second card would be $1.91, but it seems to be written as a second Tivo attached to another tv, and mine are both on the same tv.

    Before I get on the phone to start complaining about jacking up my bill without warning, I want to figure out what I should actually be paying for.

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