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Official Comcast CableCard Thread!

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

  1. tetranz

    tetranz New Member

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    Jun 18, 2008
    Hi all

    My experience wasn't too bad in the end all things considered. My initial story is here.

    Yesterday morning I called Comcast and said that we were only getting basic cable channels and I believed that the cards needed to be reinitialized or re-paired. The operator totally blew me off and said I had to call Tivo even after I told her that one of the cable card screens was saying "Waiting for CP authorization". I called Tivo just to do the right thing and they confirmed that it was a Comcast problem. I called Comcast back and got someone who was quite helpful and immediately authorized the cards which fixed the "Waiting for CP authorization" problem. I still weren't getting more channels so she put me on hold but accidentally transferred me to another person who I had to explain things to again. She was also helpful and seemed to know exactly what she was doing and said the cards needed to be paired and I said, okay, I've got the numbers. I read them to her, she did the pairing and all is well now. :)

    I'm in southern New Hampshire.

    I now have an HDMI issue that I'll post elsewhere.

    Cheers
    Ross
     
  2. Cherylabq

    Cherylabq New Member

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    Oct 3, 2006
    I FINALLY got my second TiVo HD Series 3 WORKING. After two TiVos...I kind of see a pattern of why I wasn't getting channels on some of my tuners. It took about four calls this time to finally get someone on the phone who would be patient with my assessment of the situation. So...Here are the SECRETS to hopefully get your TiVo running:

    First, make sure Comcast has matched the cablecards to the correct host IDs. You can pull out the cards yourself and write down the cablecard numbers. Then go into the Messages and Settings menu. Select Account & System Information menu. Then, the CableCARD Decoders menu. Select Configure CableCARD 1 and then CableCARD Menu. Look for the Host ID Screen (the name is different for Multistream and Singlestream Scientific Atlanta cards). Write down the Host ID number for CableCARD 1 (with the number on the card). Do the same for CableCARD 2. The numbers can get screwed up when the Comcast Rep enters them. If this fails to get your channels working...

    Make SURE the Hierarchy of your Comcast equipment is listed correctly on your account. I will try to order this in layman's terms from what I wrote down after I convinced my Comcast Rep to check the equipment order:

    Comcast Hierarchy

    1. HD DVRs must be listed FIRST!!
    2. Non HD DVR boxes next
    3. HD cableboxes (without a DVR)
    4. Digital Converter (which she said were regular cable boxes)
    5. Modem (for internet access)
    6. Phone service (I think it was an EMTA for those getting Comcast phone service)
    7. Cablecards

    If you are still missing channels on one or more of your tuners, make sure the TiVo rate is linked to your account (I'm not sure how they do this, I just know not having it messed up my first TiVo HD Series 3).

    I hope this helps everyone!

    A working TiVo HD Series 3 rocks!
     
  3. Garak

    Garak New Member

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    Jun 19, 2008
    I posted it here before reading your post, and it seems to have worked. A "executive level" support agent called me today and she said she'd be able to reserve me a card and set up an appointment. She's in the process of finding me one now.

    It's amazing how big a stink I've had to make for something so simple.
     
  4. RandallW

    RandallW New Member

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    Dec 28, 2005
    Whoohoo, I'm back in the family!! It's been a good year or so since I've had a Tivo (was a DirecTivo user before Comcast), and I just upgraded to a TivoHD through a friend. ;)

    Anyways, after reading through much of this thread, I thought I'd be facing hell. I called up Comcast this afternoon, before picking my new TivoHD box from the office, and they told me I could pick up S-Cards at my nearest service station, but M-Cards are only available via a technician coming (and the $16.95 installation fee, lame). So I decide to get two S-Cards instead. I go into the Comcast office, return my old HD box, and tell them that I just got a TivoHD and need a CableCard. He says sure thing, goes into the back, and brings back one card. I ask him if it's an M-Card, and he says yeap, it'll be $1.79 (didn't argue, though that should be free, eh?). He punched in the numbers, and that was it.

    Onward to installation at home, everything looks smooth so far. I called the up, gave them all the Host ID and Data #s, and just finishing up the installation now.

    Am I the only one who actually had a somewhat positive experience?
     
  5. heed316

    heed316 New Member

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    Jun 17, 2008
    Brooklyn, MI
    I got my M-Card installed today. The tech that came out had a few M-Cards and S-Cards just in case, and was happy that it was only the single M-Card. He said he hadn't done one in a while, but I had the directions there for him. He would of been in and out pretty quickly if only the dispatch lady knew what she was doing. I heard her saying it had been a while since she had done a cablecard, and because of this wasn't sure exactly what to do with sending the hits to the card. After a few calls around by the tech and the dispatch lady, they got it right and all is well. The tech said his normal dispatch lady wasn't there today, and that she knew cablecards really well, but oh well. I didn't mind the delay and the tech was really nice about it all. So all in all, everything went pretty smoothly.
     
  6. RandallW

    RandallW New Member

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    Dec 28, 2005
    Spoke too soon. Not receiving all my channels, just 1-34, and 702-712. =P On the phone with them now, blah.
     
  7. heed316

    heed316 New Member

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    Jun 17, 2008
    Brooklyn, MI
    Yeah, I made sure we went through a bunch of the channels. The tech was just scrolling through 30-35...I'm like yeah go into the 100s and 200s to make sure EVERYTHING is working.
     
  8. cluelesspa

    cluelesspa New Member

    17
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    Jun 19, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Wasnt Bad? your experience was GREAT! wow did you call 800 Comcast? wonder which call center you get when you call... because you get routed to the call center for your area?

    the Pittsburgh Comcast Call center is "clueless" about anything to do with pairing or authorizing cable cards. plus in my case I was previous Adelphia customer so different system on top of that...

    glad you had a good experience... they had to Pair (or tie the HOST ID of the TIVO to the particular cable card) to allow it to acess the encrypted channels (you probably saw no ECMs previously on the CP menu of the Cable Card)... I guess you get decryption OK on the CP menu when paired properly AND tuning in an encrypted channel now....
     
  9. slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

    3,501
    18
    Sep 19, 2006
    In the ATL
    Sounds like the same problem I had - the card was not 'initialized' properly. Getting the right person to find and fix that is the pain, once you get past the hassle of just getting the damn card(s) in the first place.
     
  10. Videodrome

    Videodrome tivo - please wait..

    912
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    Jun 20, 2008
    Okay i called comcast last week, i inquired about getting an M card, i was told in a very rude way. There are no m cards and they dont know when there are getting them in. So i called back , and asked to see of any S cards were available, the quick answer was to drop me into voice mail of the cablecard person. Who i think is Joanie. Who never called back.

    So this week i tried comcast chat. Somehow the people in chat, with zero hesitation scheduled me for installation today, between 8a-12p. Well its 3p and there are nowhere to be found, and i have no faith in them coming at all.

    So i just checked chat, and they said my appointment is an all day appointment. Do they realize people have jobs? If they dont arrive today. I will be calling and complaining again. But i think comcastmustdie, and twitter will be the only recourse.
     
  11. RandallW

    RandallW New Member

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    Dec 28, 2005
    Well I scheduled for a tech to come out, after 3 unsuccessful calls with them (including one humorous, yet frustrating call with a tech with a heavy Indian accent, who at first questioned why I was calling Comcast, because he said I had a TiVo....). I starting looking through the manual this morning while waiting around, and saw an interesting page that tells about signal strengths. I decided to check it out and see what it would show on the channels that I wasn't' receiving, and as soon as I checked out one of those channels, it magically came to life! No clue if that's a hot fix for something, but everything's working now, and I don't have to pay their ridiculous $16.95 for a tech now.
     
  12. cluelesspa

    cluelesspa New Member

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    Jun 19, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA
    not so fast.. check your Cable Card Diagnostic Screen. Under the CP Menu check to see if BOTH cards show up as AUTHORIZED or show Waiting for CP Authorization.
     
  13. tetranz

    tetranz New Member

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    Jun 18, 2008
    Yes to all that. I'm in Southern New Hampshire and called 1-800-Comcast and choose the "trouble with your service" option. I feel quite fortunate compared to what others have had to go through. I think telling them that the CP cable card screen said "Waiting for CP Authorization" helped, at least with the second and third people I spoke to, and the fact that I obviously knew my way around the Tivo screens. There was never any suggestion of needing another visit. The immediate response was "I can help with that".

    Good luck!
    Ross
     
  14. tooalto

    tooalto New Member

    19
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    Apr 19, 2008
    We have a series 2 HD DVR from Tivo with lifetime service. Love it, love it! It only took five or six calls to Comcast and two tech trips but it was up and running beautifully for the two months we've had it. On Jun.17 we woke up to find we had no HD or digital preferred channels. Nothing above channel 71 and what we had below 71 only showed about 8 channels where they actually should be, i.e., channel 54 should be Food Network and the Tivo guide was correct but the video was A&E. So it goes for the rest the the basic tier channels. There are several which are dupes and several missing. We were told comcast was doing an upgrade in our area (NE PA) and the problem should clear up as soon as the upgrade was complete. Well, a week and a half later, still no luck. We had a tech here Friday for 2 hrs. who replaced our M card and gave us all new cable wire. Tues.a supervisor was to come but instead we got two more techs who had no clue and spent another 2 hrs putting in new cards. They spoke with the superviosr, via cellphone, while I was sitting right in the room, verified that i would be able to be home all day Wednesday (yesterday) and said the supervisor would be out then. Well, I sat all day, no supervisor, no phone call. I finally called comcast at 5, said I wanted to see the supervisor in the 2 hour window I have at home today. This message was given right to a call center supe. who tried to reach the area tech supe. He was not able to but, supposedly, left voicemail and email messages.
    The techs who were here Tuesday said they personally knew of at least 2 other Tivo customers in the area who had the same problem after their "upgrade" so we're not alone.
    has anyone else experienced this and what was done to correct it? We have $500 worth of equipment and service which is basically useless to us.
     
  15. drhankz

    drhankz New Member

    306
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    Jan 14, 2008
    Salem NH
    The BOTTOM LINE to all of this is Comcast DVR's use the same
    CableCards. Therefore if Comcast DVRs are working the TiVo
    Should work. There is no difference.
     
  16. tooalto

    tooalto New Member

    19
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    Apr 19, 2008
    But the comcast boxes aren't working either!!!
     
  17. Jul 1, 2008 #5497 of 9367
    btwyx

    btwyx Substantive Member

    11,331
    0
    Jan 16, 2003
    Mountain...
    Interesting, a guy at work needed Cable cards for his new TiVo HD. Support told him he could pick up the cards at the local office, or it'd be an $80 installation charge. I expressed surprise as I didn't think Comcast around here let you do that, they didn't the last time I tried (about a year ago).

    But he came back later with 2 multistream cards he'd picked up from a Comcast office on El Camino in Sunnyvale. I mentioned he should only need one of the 2 M cards.
     
  18. Jul 2, 2008 #5498 of 9367
    vrooje

    vrooje New Member

    1
    0
    Jul 2, 2008
    Hi all,

    First post here. Trying to read this thread but wow -- talk about intimidatingly long.

    We have been having intermittent problems with our dual-tuner HD TiVo from the first time we installed it (we got it for Christmas). Sometimes the CableCards work perfectly, and other times they won't play the programming on premium channels like HBO and Encore. It seems like the cards are randomly in "on" or "off" states with regards to premium channels, and I don't think they're both always in the same state.

    I have called Comcast (in Connecticut) repeatedly about this, and had several service calls. Since the problem is random, the techs sometimes don't see any problems while they're at my house, and other times they get it to work and leave, but the problem comes back an hour later.

    My last service call-out was infuriating. Comcast sent the only local person who is supposed to be an "expert" in fixing CableCard problems. Of course, the cards were working perfectly when he arrived, so he had no problems to troubleshoot. While he was flipping channels and trying to make the problem recur, he told me that Comcast was basically never going to really support CableCards, and that most of the cards they used didn't work. He said that about 1 in 10 cards worked perfectly and the rest had problems, and that because I had two cards installed, that meant I had a 1 in 100 chance of ever having a system work perfectly. I said that that wasn't acceptable because I pay extra to have these channels, and because Comcast is legally required to support CableCards. He just shrugged and said that didn't matter because Comcast was coming out with its own TiVo-branded system and so they didn't intend to support CableCards on non-Comcast systems.

    We went back and forth for a few minutes and I finally said that at least I was trying to establish a pattern of technical problems so that there would be a record of it when I finally wrote a letter asking for a refund of the premium channel subscription. He just shrugged again and said, "yeah, right... good luck with that." He was so negative and at the same time so apathetic that I eventually just told him to leave.

    Although the frequency of problems has recently lessened somewhat, we still only have intermittent service on our premium channels, and even some non-premium HD channels. I could ask for another useless service call just to have the ping on my record that I reported a problem -- but I'm hoping there is another solution. If I write a letter to Comcast and send copies to the FCC and TiVo, will that help? If I call TiVo first and ask them to initiate a conference call (bearing in mind that my cards work fine for most channels), will they do anything?

    I'm sure I'm not the first person to have had these problems and I apologize for asking about it again... perhaps you could just point me to a page from this thread so I don't have to go reading all 185 pages?
     
  19. Jul 2, 2008 #5499 of 9367
    jmpage2

    jmpage2 New Member

    1,951
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    Jan 20, 2004
    You should have gotten it recorded with hidden camera. Then his ass would have gotten fired.

    I agree that Comcast is pretty pathetic. Monopolies tend to breed such attitudes.
     
  20. Jul 2, 2008 #5500 of 9367
    tombakken

    tombakken New Member

    4
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    Jun 26, 2008
    I had my comcast cable install yesterday (part of cable/phone/internet install) , here in Beekman, NY. I have the Tivo HD DRV. The Tech installed a multistream cablecard and all seemed to be ok. I tried to be vigilant and made sure that both tuners were working. And that I could get my HD channels. I checked the first few in the 500+ channel range, where all the HD channels are and all seemed well. Of course, after the tech left I found that I was only getting the network HD channels and not the other HD channels. The funny thing is when I check the channel signal strength for those channels they all seem to be good. Just no picture.
    The tech is coming t-row, but is there anyone else who has had similar problem or can suggest what the problem may be?

    Tom
     

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