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SDV FAQ

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by bdraw, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    Make sure that you try rebooting your TiVo to get the cards to update their channel map. If a warm restart doesn't work, unplug it and plug it back in.

    Both Cox and Comcast were kind of hanging back on the SDV thing (whilst TWC tears into it with a vengeance), with two or three test markets each. Cox has been upgrading from 750MHz to 1GHz bandwidth, so if they use it all for new HD services, they can add about 40 new ones before resorting to SDV (they can't use the new bandwidth above 870MHz for television programming to be received by either their deployed leased boxes or retail QAM tuners). They've just about finished their 1GHz conversion here in San Diego; I'd be surprised if they weren't doing the same up there in OC.
     
  2. Surrealone

    Surrealone TiVoOnThEmInD

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    Very good info. Thanks Mikey. I will do a reboot or power down.
     
  3. lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

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    As to their plans, I couldn't tell you, but yes there are a number of ways the situation could be alleviated. Which one they might eventually choose...???
     
  4. bballcards

    bballcards New Member

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    Looks like the SDV Tuning Resolver is getting closer to release....

    Link
     
  5. m_jonis

    m_jonis Member

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    Still nothing concrete about Scientific Atlanta, though. Of course, even then, I doubt our local TW office would have the rest of the equipment installed that would be necessary for the device to work.
     
  6. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    What "rest of the equipment"? If your system is using one of the version of SDV that TWC is deploying on its S-A networks, then one assumes that the only equipment necessary for TiVo to tune those services is a Tuning Adapter by S-A (or anyone else for that matter) which knows how to speak the protocols TWC is using to implement SDV. No other equipment is necessary to make the network work with the Tuning Adapter.
     
  7. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    I'd recommend that people visit the HD Guru article on SDV (where Gary Merson recently revealed the "SDV crisis" to his readers at this amazingly late date :rolleyes:). Search the page for "Mike Schwartz" and read his reply. Schwartz is apparently with CableLabs and responds to and "corrects" Merson's blog post from that point of view.

    I'd make several corrections to his corrections. For instance, he says:
    First off, the deadline was July 2004--the regulation requiring it was added by FCC 03-225, issued on 10 September 2003. Second, it was a chicken-and-egg situation--there was certainly no rush for any CE manufacturer to produce CableCARD compliant products before consumers could get CableCARDs from their cable provider.

    Later, Schwartz says:
    Though there was a bidirectional communications standard specified in ANSI/SCTE 26 2004 which the manufacturers could have implemented, it went hand in hand with a set of interactive services which the cable providers declined to implement, so if the OEMs had gone to the expense of implementing two way comm in products back in the 2004-2005 model year when they introduced CableCARD compliant products, no cable system in the country would have been offering any service which could listen or respond to anything that a bidirectional CableCARD host might have to say. I guess that they could have implemented a useless backchannel anyway, but it seems questionable whether CableLabs would have certified a device with a pointless ability to talk back to the network.

    Please--that last sentence is just libel. The CE industry has produced over 10 million undirectional CableCARD products. Apparently, only 347,000 CableCARDs have been leased to use in them (remember that some of them, like our beloved TiVos, use two CableCARDs each); we have only the cable providers' word on that number.

    It should also be noted that the cable industry dragged their feet on complying with the integrated security ban as hard as they possibly could. The original deadline was July 2005; they were given a 2 year extension over the loud objection of the CE industry. As they approached the end of that extension, they begged for more time, which they were denied.

    Everyone has their point of view :rolleyes:.
     
  8. HDTiVo

    HDTiVo Not so Senior Member

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    Well, TiVo included M-card support in the S3 before there was a way of testing that...and look where that got. :eek:

    In truth the whole one-way thing was a very bad idea forced to come into being for this abortive short term period because of all the damn fighting and foot dragging without FCC kicking any butt over 2 way.

    I had some rather thin correspondance with Schwartz which indicated to me there was not exactly much activity on the dongle front by various companies. I can only guess TiVo attended the interop a couple weeks ago, and of course we know from original souce (Mari) Motorola had "success." (whatever that means and whether that was the production model is not stated.)

    As for TiVo, will they not have to write drivers for each TR like they do with USB-ethernet adapters?

    "availability" is a complex word with many factors and possible definitions...
     
  9. CharlesH

    CharlesH Member

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    The whole idea is that the adapter behaves like any other cable company's set-top box on a given system. The head end doesn't have to have any special knowledge about the adapter; it's just another set-top box making SDV requests. In fact, the Motorola adapter seems to BE a modified low-end set-top box.
     
  10. CharlesH

    CharlesH Member

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    I thought that the USB protocol was defined in the spec for the adapter, so TiVo only needs to write one driver?
     
  11. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    You still have to likely register the Box ID in your account. Hopefully they won't consider it yet another digital outlet for which they will charge you a monthly fee for in addition to whatever they are going to do for the hardware rental.
     
  12. ah30k

    ah30k Active Member

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    I don't believe the TR will be viewed as another device but take on the personality of the host device to which it speaks for.
     
  13. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    No--one of the purposes of the Tuning Adapter is to normalize the interface (the other purpose being to give access to the backchannel to hosts with unidirectional CC interfaces). TiVo only talks and listens to the Tuning Adapter through its USB interface, and every Tuning Adapter talks exactly the same language through that interface. The Tuning Adapters also exchange messages with the cable network through backchannel communications over the coax; when TiVo makes a request of the network, the TA's job is to convert that into terms of the specific network's SDV system and send the appropriate message out over the backchannel; when the reply is received from the network, it's converted into a message in the TA USB connection protocol and passed on to TiVo.

    It's a bit like being in the United Nations--a participant there just talks into his or her microphone and listens to responses as rendered into English (or whatever his or her language is) by translators, without having to consider what languages the people who give those responses are actually speaking.

    CableCARD itself is similar; CableCARDs manufactured by Motorola and SA deal with different proprietary encryption schemes used on the wire (Motorola's DigiCipher and SA's PowerKey), decrypting content received in those proprietary formats and re-encrypting it using the open standard DFAST system to be passed back over the CableCARD host interface. CableCARDs in bidirectional host devices can send messages on behalf of the host, passed to the CableCARD by the host device using an ANSI/SCTE standard API; the CableCARD repackages such messages for transmission as appropriate for whatever vendor's host network they're operating on.
     
  14. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    The network will probably have some awareness of the Tuning Adapters as a separate entities, since it will probably be able to download firmware upgrades into them. Beyond that, I'd think that the interaction between the network and the TR would be indistinguishable from the network performing SDV negotiations with a leased cable STB. Those interactions are vendor-proprietary and explicitly not in within the scope of the OpenCable Tuning Resolver Interface Specification, so they could be as aware or unaware of the existence of the Tuning Adapter as the vendor cares to make them.
     
  15. HDTiVo

    HDTiVo Not so Senior Member

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    Thanks, that is an important piece of info.
     
  16. morac

    morac Cat God

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    Hmm, that makes me wonder if the cableCARDS and the TA will talk to each other somehow. Currently if you bring up the cableCARD menus on the TiVo, the cards report that the device they are connected to does not have two way capabilities and that there is no associated IP address. After the TA is installed would this update to indicate that there is a two way interface or is it still considered one way from the card's perspective?
     
  17. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Cisco announces their version of the SDV tuning adapter - STA-1520:
    http://www.lightreading.com/document.asp?doc_id=152093
    Looks like Tivo has already done some limited testing with the prototype:
     
  18. SCSIRAID

    SCSIRAID Active Member

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  19. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    That's interesting. Must be programmable on the network side. I guess if a cable provider plans to buy some tens of thousands of these things, customizing it to his particular brand of SDV isn't that much to ask.

    It's great news, though, inasmuch as TWC, the prime purveyor of SDV, is on Cisco networks. So many people in these forums have been freaking out because there'd been no press release on development of an SA compatible product.
     
  20. Scopeman

    Scopeman 2 x Basic Roamio

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    That could be because the content available over VOD is also available over normal channels. VOD is currently primarily a way to re-access content that has already been transmitted. If, however, VOD is used to provide first-access to content that is no being transmitted on another channel, which is how many envision VOD to untimately develop, then your DVR becomes a hindrance to the access of VOD content.

    This shift to SDV (which exists to save bandwidth on less veiwed channels) is driven (my opinion) by the current idustry structure of "channels" being owned by people who aggregate themed content (example -Food Network). This is an old paradigm - the content aggregators ("channels") were required to bundled themed content and sell targeted advertising into the gaps between the shows.

    The apparent new model (content owners themselves providing content in single bites for a fee) removes the aggregator (TV channel) and is more appropriate to the VOD delivery model. The internet & IP transmission technology, the low cost of video blogging, the eruption of youtube, etc - all point to a more self-serve model that individualizes content aggregation. Note that the biggest adopters of VOD so far have been those companies not reliant on the aggragator-that-enbeds-commericals business model - HBO, Movie releases, etc.

    Tis shift is already being seen in a small way on the Tivo platform - GeekbriefTV, CNET for Tivo, NYTimes movie reviews, etc - all these are essentially the first wave of post-TV-channel VOD.

    As DVRs kill off the commercial they necessarily pave the way for their own destruction *unless* they are also equipped to survive in a post-commerical world. And post-commerical means a lage number of marginal chaneels will die, and their content will have to be VOD to survive that event.

    So yes, VOD support matters, in the long run. (in my opinion)
     

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