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Official Comcast CableCard Thread!

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

  1. Ladd Morse

    Ladd Morse Member

    791
    0
    Feb 21, 2002
    Yup, ya got me! :)

    My eye automatically skips over taglines, etc. and I literally never saw it!
     
  2. slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

    3,501
    18
    Sep 19, 2006
    In the ATL
    Yay! (if they can truly fix all the problems at this number, that is.)

    Now we just need to get them to quit rolling trucks every time we want a new card.
     
  3. Langree

    Langree The Gimp

    17,255
    0
    Apr 29, 2004
    Freezinmyass...
    I'm so glad Houston lets you pick up your cards.
     
  4. MikeAndrews

    MikeAndrews Registered abuser

    14,222
    1
    Jan 17, 2002
    Northern...
    I reaaly wish I had held the first CSRs feet to thte fire to get a betetr sign up deal.

    My Comcast bill just went from $94.nn to $101.nn with no explanation. As far I can tell it's just because they added $5 to basic digital or threw in a new bogus fee. It may because Comcast just lost the NFL lawsuit so I'm forced to pay for NFL as a good American whether I want it or not.

    Over $100 is WAY too much, especially when AT&T Uverse is talking $30-$40 initial.

    As it stands I'm getting a 6 month Showtime and 12 month HBO deal. I'll cancel both when the deals expire.

    I love TiVo functionality but cable fees are way too high.
     
  5. Discotech

    Discotech New Member

    5
    0
    Oct 4, 2008
    Quick question, just got my Comcast cablecards installed today and everything is up and running. Just one problem. On my HD channels I do not get any guide data. I am not sure what the problem might be and who to call for assistance. Please help! To elaborate, It tells me that it is "espnhd" and I can watch the channel, but guide says "unavailable" I have forced a connection and rebooted my Tivo series 3.
     
  6. HazelW

    HazelW Member

    284
    0
    Dec 6, 2007
    No. Va
    You probably just need to repeat guided setup. It will ask you if you get premium channels and you can set it up.
     
  7. Teddydogno1

    Teddydogno1 New Member

    7
    0
    Oct 24, 2008
    My refurb Tivo HD has not arrived yet (tracking says Tuesday), but I called Comcast today to inquire about the Cablecard(s). They asked if I just wanted to swing by the local office to pick it up. She said it was no problem and there is no reason to have an installer out if I'm up to doing it myself. I HOPE this holds up when I drop in Monday to get it!

    Rob
     
  8. Discotech

    Discotech New Member

    5
    0
    Oct 4, 2008
    I ran the guided setup again and PRESTO!! it worked. Thanks!
     
  9. MikeAndrews

    MikeAndrews Registered abuser

    14,222
    1
    Jan 17, 2002
    Northern...
    You also need the direct number of the guy to zap the card(s). I could have done my install myself if a) they had given me two cards, b) I could get the guy on the phone, instead the 4 hour saga of the installer chasing down a 2nd card and waiting for the guy to call him back the second time. It was helpful that the installer knew what would happen when the guy hit the card, but the instructions were pretty much right on the TiVo screen.

    Well, he also ran a new outside drop but that only took 30-45 minutes.

    I would suspect that if you just call the Comcast service number and try to hook up with the guy you'd be in for a long, long, long day.
     
  10. Teddydogno1

    Teddydogno1 New Member

    7
    0
    Oct 24, 2008
    Since I know that the CC setup might be a hassle and take some time to get right on their end, I am going to keep my DVR until the Tivo is fully up and running (that and to be sure we watch everything off it before turning it in).

    Rob
     
  11. rdlm

    rdlm Member

    58
    0
    Apr 6, 2003
    With all the horror stories, I thought I'd post my [mostly] good experience...

    I have Comcast and live in the San Francisco bay area (city of Los Altos). I have the "Standard" (basic+extended) Cable package, and have been Analog until now, and am now high def for part of my house.

    I called up the Comcast support number, and they clearly had no idea what a CC is. All I could get from them was "You need a box, sir". So I hung up and fearfully went down to the local office. There they knew all about CCs for Tivos, explained that my account would need to be upgraded to a digital "starter" package that was the same exact cost as the analog package (but includes digital and HD, as well as a few other channels), and that the CC would be free since I don't have a cable box. They also told me that CCs were now self-installable! They handed me an M-Card and a sheet with pre-printed instructions for installing it in a Tivo (really!), upgraded my account, and sent me on my way with no charges.

    I installed the card and called the 800 number on their install sheet to pair/activate it. Turns out the standard service rep can't do CCs (and they don't seem to know this), so they escalated to a supervisor. He activated the card, but it (and he) was very confused. The channel mappings were completely wrong. Turns out that my city is split in half with different infrastructure, and my card was set up for the wrong one. He'd never dealt with this before, so put me on hold for 10 minutes, came back on the line, updated some settings on their side, and it started working beautifully.
     
  12. Zimm

    Zimm New Member

    33
    0
    Apr 7, 2008
    Now correct me if i'm wrong but does one actually need to be upgraded to a digital package to use a CableCARD? I have been under the impression that you do not need to have a digital package to use a CC. This would basically get you all the mappings for the clear QAM channels you get now at no additional cost.
     
  13. slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

    3,501
    18
    Sep 19, 2006
    In the ATL
    You should be able to get limited basic (if that's what you want) with a CC. If you're already on expanded basic, converting to digital (with a CC included) is usually no extra charge.
     
  14. Tivaxion

    Tivaxion New Member

    7
    0
    Dec 11, 2006
    Ok, taking the plunge. I'm picking up my new TV and TiVo HD in a couple of hours. Just got off the phone with Comcast, and was very pleasantly surprised to get an appointment for the truck to come out tomorrow afternoon.

    Not only that, but for reasons I'll never know, when I asked what the cost of the install would be, she said, "I'm going to go ahead and waive that for you right now."

    I specifically asked for an M card, and she said she'd never heard of that, but made notes of the request. Then later, she said "oh, here's the card you asked for..."

    I'll let you know how it goes.
     
  15. Teddydogno1

    Teddydogno1 New Member

    7
    0
    Oct 24, 2008
    All right! My new HD is all ready! It arrived on Tuesday and I stopped by the Comcast office on the way home from work to pick up my M-Card. No wait and they had one handy. No hassle at all. $0 per month for the CC, but they are charging $5 per month for a second digital outlet but only until I return my DVR. Then I'll have no extra fees at all, a savings of $15.95 per month.

    Only tonight did I finally have a chance to install the card. My refurb Tivo didn't come with the info for installing and configuring the CC, but I found the page on the Tivo support site and followed along. Installed it and it came up correctly on the set. When I called Comcast (the regular 877 support number), they had my account info already and could see that the CC had already phoned home. Once I got to the right screen and gave them the Host and Data IDs, they entered it into the system, pinged my card and we were all done. Took me longer to search for the instructions than it did to do the whole thing. I'm re-running the Guided Setup now and should be able to start really using my Tivo tomorrow!

    Rob
     
  16. MikeAndrews

    MikeAndrews Registered abuser

    14,222
    1
    Jan 17, 2002
    Northern...
    Mine is suddenly having weak signal issues on some channels. How is this possible?

    The meat pie "Good Eats" had pixelation and severe dropouts. I had some on Bravo the other night.

    Think I should call Comcast and waste my breath?
     
  17. dotorg

    dotorg New Member

    27
    0
    Jul 3, 2000
    Yes, call them. I dealt with that for years at my last house and the reason for the problem turned out to be a piercing in the insulation of the cable outside my house which had caused some corrosion. The corrosion was causing signal degradation in a frequency range right in the middle of one of the blocks of channels which impacted 4 or so of the HBO channels and half a dozen of the random digital stations that nobody watches.

    Signal loss in a narrow frequency range is pretty common with damaged wiring.
     
  18. epstewart

    epstewart Member

    648
    0
    Mar 1, 2003
    I'm running into a problem with an M Card from Comcast in Baltimore County, Maryland. It went into Slot 1 of my new TiVo HD two days ago but is not yet receiving any digital channels other than the local digital broadcast channels in the low 200's. Those are HD and come in fine. Other than those, the scrambled digital cable channels in the 100's are not coming in at all, nor are the scrambled HD digital cable channels in the 200's, nor HBO/SHOWTIME/STARZ in the 200's and 300's.

    I have an existing TiVo Series 3 with two single-stream cable cards in it on another TV. When I had Comcast install those cards, one of them kept losing the digital channels in the 100's. Over the course of several days I had to call Comcast several times before I got a customer service rep who managed to do something at his end to fix the problem. He told me the card "had not been set up to receive digital service." He changed that and "hit" the card with an enabling signal, and the missing channels came in. I've been getting them ever since.

    This time, I have yet to hook up with a rep who could solve my problem. All they know to do is check the Host ID, Data ID, etc., and those are all seemingly fine. The phone reps have been unable to confirm that my card is actually set up to receive the missing channels, other than to say it looks to be "coded" properly. When I ask for more specific information, they go into a huddle with themselves, start muttering things as if they aren't sure how to look that up, check with a supervisor (after putting me on hold) who says do X or Y or Z and try it again (no joy), then bail out and schedule another service call the next day. Yesterday's service call never happened. When I called a phone rep after the arrival window expired, she told me the service had been marked "completed," though I never saw the guy, never got a phone call, yada yada yada. Right now I am waiting patiently for another service tech (a "lead" tech this time) to call (or just arrive unannounced, I'm not proud).

    Meanwhile, some questions for others that have been down this road before:

    When Comcast "hits" or "pings" your card (or whatever) do you have to go all the way through TiVo Guided Setup again before you can hope to start receiving the missing channels? Do you have to specifically use the CableCard Test Channels function in the TiVo to pick them up? Should they come in just by changing channels the usual way? Or, if you are tuned to a missing channel, ought it to abruptly come in as soon as the "hit" or "ping" comes through?

    In my dealings with the Comcast phone reps, both on this occasion and on the earlier one, I have sometimes been told that my case would have to be transferred to a different department, which could then solve the setup issue. This mysterious other department was supposedly in charge of "coding" my CableCard, or whatever. Never has this hand-off to another department borne fruit for me. Moreover, when I've asked to have this department call me on the phone, it's never happened. Anyone had any similar experiences?
     
  19. a68oliver

    a68oliver Member

    431
    0
    Jul 15, 2000
    Crawfordsvil...
    epstewart, I can't answer all your questions, but I can comment on the signal coming in when they hit the card. One of my two cablecards on my S3 had quit displaying digital encrypted channels. I tuned to one of the missing channels on the Test Channels screen and phoned Comcast. I gave the rep the SN of the bad cablecard and she hit the card again and I received the missing channel "instantly". It was so instant that I thought the screen had actually timed out and gone back to another live channel just as it does when you sit on a menu too long.

    So, yes, it can be instant if all the computers are talking to each other with no delays.
     
  20. Nov 1, 2008 #5800 of 9367
    epstewart

    epstewart Member

    648
    0
    Mar 1, 2003
    Thanks, that's good to know.

    But my M Card is now working!

    After three days of runarounds, two Comcast techs just came to my house (finally!) and got things working. They put a meter on my cable where it goes into the TiVo and decided they needed to replace the splitter where the line splits off to my TV, and the short piece of cable between the splitter and the TiVo. Then they called someone at Comcast Baltimore County HQ who arranged for the people at the "head end" in White Marsh, Maryland, to enable the card once again. Arranging for that to happen took five minutes or so, after which all my channels were present and accounted for!

    Now, I suppose I'll never know whether it was the hardware replacement in my house or getting the right person to do the right thing at the head end that actually did the trick. Maybe both were necessary. Who knows?

    If it was just a bad or wrong splitter, the installer should have checked that, I'd think. Also, there's no excuse for two totally missed service appointments on two straight days leading up to today. Today I was told to expect a "lead" technician to come between 7 and 9 AM, but when I called to verify just after 7, I was told no technician would be available. I asked to be called by a supervisor, after making noises about not paying my bill. The supervisor called after about 1 1/2 hours and promised not a lead tech but a tech experienced with cablecards by 10:00. When that didn't happen, I called the supervisor back, twice in two hours, but got only his voice mail. Then, at 12 noon, the tech (actually, a two-tech team) that the supervisor had promised arrived (without calling me beforehand). They got things working pretty fast after they arrived, making me a much happier camper.

    Persistence pays off ... but when my current three-year contract with Comcast expires after another year and a half, I may switch to Verizon FIOS.
     

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