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Series 3 Verizon FIOS HD compat?

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by mchad, Sep 12, 2006.

  1. Mar 2, 2007 #321 of 2214
    TexasAg

    TexasAg New Member

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    Apr 2, 2006
    JonInVA, call Verizion and tell them that you are not getting these channels. Chances are, the techs or the office folks forgot to authorize the cards to get those channels. They can do it remotely, and it should work.

    I had the same problem on my install.

    Also, my local HD channels pixelate on one tuner and not the other (but the tuner that pixelates switches). It's looks like a problem mainly with Fios users. If you've got an antenna (I just use a stripped coax cable), you won't have to worry.
     
  2. Mar 2, 2007 #322 of 2214
    JonInVA

    JonInVA 1080 or bust

    36
    0
    Jan 17, 2005
    Ashburn, VA
    Thanks TexasAg - call placed, problem described, ticket opened, and they're going to get back to me today. I'll give them a few hours and then if they haven't called back, I will. I'll post again when I've got something to report.
     
  3. Mar 2, 2007 #323 of 2214
    ashu

    ashu User title defunct

    9,158
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    Nov 8, 2002
    MD
    When (If?) I get FiOS here in Ashburn myself, I plan to get a 6412 or plain-jane HD box from them too, in addition to the 2 CableCards, at least temporarily, so I can diagnose such issues and check whether it's an account authorization issue, or something CableCard/S3 related.

    Jon, would you please PM me a more specific location/intersection/address (whatever you're comfortable with) please? I'm trying to figure out VZ's cryptic/pseudo-random FiOS rollout in Loudoun county :)
     
  4. Mar 2, 2007 #324 of 2214
    JonInVA

    JonInVA 1080 or bust

    36
    0
    Jan 17, 2005
    Ashburn, VA
    After two phone calls, the Fiber Solutions Center (aka FIOS tech support, 1-888-553-1555) confirmed what the field installer had suspected... "HD content" was somehow not included on the order for my two new CableCARDs - despite the fact that I've had it for 3 months on the Moto 6416 that my S3 is replacing. It was therefore not provisioned for the cards, explaining my missing HD National channels.

    Unfortunately, the FSC guys couldn't reach any Encore Video reps to enable HD content for the two cards. I found it a bit surprising that the FSC couldn't make the change themselves, but the FSC rep explained that tech support personnel are not allowed access to the provisioning systems. I suspect Sarbanes-Oxley is at work there, given experiences I've had at my own job, so I could relate.

    Anyway, they've noted everything in my support ticket and they want me to call back tomorrow so that they can try again to reach an Encore Video rep. The FSC reps were very apologetic and even frustrated themselves about not being able to fix the problem - but I understand that these things happen. Hopefully by this time tomorrow I'll be able to report success.
     
  5. Mar 3, 2007 #325 of 2214
    Infohiker

    Infohiker New Member

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    Sep 4, 2003
    I have series 3 and I am using 2 Verizon Cable cards. The installation was a lot more difficult than the original install with the VZ HDDVR . The techs were not familiar with the S3, and dispatch did not have the order set up correctly.
    If you are going to order cable cards, be really specific with the dispatch. Our dispatcher decided that all we were doing was removing the DVR and replacing with a regular VZ STB.
    Our techs came out, and had cable cards with them. However, VZ allows only one change to a work order a visit. 2 cable cards = 2 changes, so there was a lot of discussion between tech and HQ about this. Long story short, they did it and got it running ok.
    OK means that we have some pixilization that we did not have before. Techs spent hours trying to rewire, etc. Eventually they have decided that it is a problem on the lines (one not preexisting when we were using the propietary DVR) and so they are doing another visti tommorow.
    Away from the mildly annoying pixelization (on only a few channels), everything is running fine. Seems hard to beleive, but the resolution seems even better than it was with the VZ HDDVR. which was better than the old DTV HD. So right now, I am thinking that if they fix the pixelization issues, I am going to have the best possible setup I have ever seen. I cannot think of anything else I can do to improve the setup I have. Scary. I have been chasing TV nirvana for years, and I think I am almost there.
    Now if only the networks would only provide quality programming.
     
  6. Mar 3, 2007 #326 of 2214
    JonInVA

    JonInVA 1080 or bust

    36
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    Jan 17, 2005
    Ashburn, VA
    The saga continues. I called FSC back shortly after noon today, and as I described the situation to the rep I got he quickly came to the conclusion that this was "definitely" a billing problem. He didn't even open up the support ticket that I told him had all of the information in it from last night. He just blindly transfered me to Encore Center, and the woman I got there started questioning whether or not it was even possible to receive HD channels on CableCARDs. No lie.

    She finally called FSC back, had somebody take a look at my support ticket, and after about 20 minutes on hold while they discussed the problem she tells me:

    "Well sir, it seems that the installer was correct. You've had HD Content all along, it was on the order for your CableCARDS, but FSC is showing that it was never actually enabled on the cards. Everything looks fine in the billing system - FSC had to actually run diagnostics on your cards to confirm that the appropriate code had not been activated. HD Content must have dropped off of your order. I apologize for the confusion and the inconvenience."

    Which matched the gist of what they were telling me last night. Now here's the real kicker... nobody in the office this weekend seems to be able to fix this. Encore took a contact number from me and said that somebody would be able to correct the issue within the next 24-48 hours. They'd call me back when it's fixed.

    I'm getting the impression that FSC and Encore had to escalate my ticket, and the Tier Two video guys don't have to work weekends. :(
     
  7. Mar 3, 2007 #327 of 2214
    Ron Tobin

    Ron Tobin Member

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    May 13, 2004
    Sarasota, FL
    I recently got 2 VZ cable cards for my S3. I found that I was getting sporadic pixelization that wasn't seen on my other HD Verizon box. While Verizon doesn't officially support the Tivo, their tech support suggested that I attenuate the signal, which was reading 100 on the Tivo cable strength meter. I inserted a 6db attenuator, which brought it down to 90, and I haven't had a problem since.
     
  8. Mar 4, 2007 #328 of 2214
    wmcbrine

    wmcbrine Ziphead

    10,363
    22
    Aug 2, 2003
    The crazy thing about all this is that Verizon doesn't charge separately for HD. So why is it a separate item in their provisioning?

    Even Verizon's standard-def set-top-box can tune in the HD channels and play the audio.
     
  9. Mar 4, 2007 #329 of 2214
    ATB

    ATB New Member

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    Sep 27, 2005
    I had the same problem when my FIOS TV was 1st installed with the Verizon Motorola box. They only enabled 1/2 of my HD stations. Verizon has amazing picture qualiy vs. DTV, but dealing with their people is awful.
     
  10. Mar 4, 2007 #330 of 2214
    ATB

    ATB New Member

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    Sep 27, 2005
    These days in NJ, it seems to take 2-4 weeks to get an apt for anything, including getting a CC install. That is if the installer even bothers to show up when they are supposed to. Everything is working for me now, but I was close to giving up on these jokers after all the time I spend with clueless people on the phone. Their national folks seem okay, but once you have to be transfered to their NJ office (when it is open) everything goes bad. Must be staffed by a bunch of monkies.
     
  11. Mar 5, 2007 #331 of 2214
    JonInVA

    JonInVA 1080 or bust

    36
    0
    Jan 17, 2005
    Ashburn, VA
    Around 6pm EST Sunday night I checked on my National HD channels... and I'm happy to report that I'm now receiving everything as expected. Somebody at Verizon must have worked on my support ticket Sunday afternoon, as I've yet to receive the "follow-up" phone call.

    My installation metrics:

    Requested CableCARD install: Fri, Feb 23rd
    Appointment window granted: Fri, Mar 2nd between 1-5pm
    Installers arrived: Fri, Mar 2nd at 1:30pm
    Installers departed: Fri, Mar 2nd at 2:30pm

    It took another two phone calls to the Fiber Solutions Center, one to the Encore Center, and roughly 48 more hours before I started receiving all of my HD channels.

    You can now consider me a pretty happy Verizon FIOS customer / TiVo S3 owner. On my HD channels I see a lot of 100% signal strength, so if I notice any significant pixellation I'll try the signal attenuation fix.

    My only word of caution? At no time did I ever mention TiVo during any of my tech support calls. I simply said "I just had two CableCARDs installed and I'm not receiving all of my HD channels on either card." There's really no reason for them to know that they're both plugged into a TiVo S3.
     
  12. Mar 5, 2007 #332 of 2214
    kas25

    kas25 New Member

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    Mar 10, 2003
    NJ
    I just got the S3 and the cablecards arrive Friday. My question is if I want to keep a basic Verizon box for on-demand, I will need two lines. Is there a simple splitter I can use to split the current line into two or does Verizon have to run another line?
     
  13. Mar 5, 2007 #333 of 2214
    JonInVA

    JonInVA 1080 or bust

    36
    0
    Jan 17, 2005
    Ashburn, VA
    Absolutely. I've actually got a central COAX distribution point in my house, which acts as my primary splitter from the FIOS ONT. A patch the distribution point feeds my S3, while a second patch feeds my S2 DT.

    For the S2 DT, I've got a second splitter after the coax comes out of the wall... one side feeds the S2 DT directly (for analog basic), the other feeds a standard Motorola FIOS STB which the S2 commands via serial cable (for digital channels). That way the S2 DT can record two programs at once... so long as one of the programs is coming from analog basic.

    Even with those two splits, signal strength is great. You just need to make sure the splitter is rated for a "wideband" digital cable signal... there are probably a bunch of posts around recommending a few good ones.
     
  14. Mar 5, 2007 #334 of 2214
    kas25

    kas25 New Member

    411
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    Mar 10, 2003
    NJ
    Good news. Just a simple coax splitter will do?
     
  15. Mar 5, 2007 #335 of 2214
    Diesel

    Diesel New Member

    6
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    Jan 10, 2003
    Anyone else seen an issue like this?

    Installer came out today and installed both cards. It was his first cablecard job so he wasn't sure what to do initially. After fiddling around and finally getting the correct serial numbers input, CableCard 2 came up fine, but CableCard 1 either didn't show a picture or was just pixel static. The wierd thing was that it could still pull the channel information...just not the picture.

    After a few tries of de-activating and re-activating, he was out of ideas. I suggested swapping card 1 and card 2. After doing this, neither card came up and it made us both nervous so we switched them back to their original slots. Well now....CableCard 1 and 2 were BOTH up.

    Everything was great, we figured maybe it just wasn't fully seated or something and so he packed up and left. 10 minutes later, CableCard 1 was malfunctioning again. Not sure what else to try before I call them and bring a tech out again.

    I'm nervous too that in the meantime, my scheduled recordings are going to default to Card 1 and just record garbage.

    Any ideas are appreciated.

    Thanks!
     
  16. Mar 7, 2007 #336 of 2214
    hmelman

    hmelman New Member

    12
    0
    Nov 18, 2006
    Newton, MA
    I'm in Newton, MA. I've had a Series 3 on Comcast for 4 months working fine. Yesterday, I switched to FIOS TV. They brought two cable cards and both installed fine. I tested a couple of channels (a low one, a digital cable one and an HD one) and all looked fine. I went through Guided Setup and all was well. I was impressed that my season passes were remembered and remapped to the new channel numbers (I thought I'd have to reenter them).

    Then I went to CNN (80) and had some bad pixelation. CNNH (81) had the same problem. I went throught all the channels and found 8 that gave me problems. The other six were: 51 TNT, 52 TBS, 60 ESPN, 64 ESPN2, 163 COURT, 227 TOON. Checking the TiVo diagnostics they were all at frequency 447,000kHz and had difficulty locking in the channel. Signal Strength bounced around. All other channels are fine. I can view these problem channels on the other TV with a Verizon (motorola) set-top box just fine. I saw this thread and tried a 6db inline attenuator (from a local electronics store for $4, neither Radio Shack nor Home Depot carries them) and no help. I'm running 8.1.1.

    I called FIOS, they tested the line remotely and saw no problems. They reinitialed the cable card, no change. He took the list of failing channels from me. I talked to FIOS several times last night and different FIOS people said different things about TiVo. One said they didn't support it, I said it was a cable card device it should be no problem. Their solution was to schedule someone to come out and check the line. I decided to delay that (I've been through 2 full days of FIOS installation).

    I called TiVo. His view was that since the Series 3 previously worked with comcast it must be a FIOS problem. I said that since the Verizon set-top box is working fine Verizon will say it's the TiVo's fault. He got fairly defensive that he didn't say it was definately a Verizon problem. I tried to suggest that it could be a grey area in the spec and just be a technical issue between the two vendors and asked him to check a problem database to see if there was any info but I don't think he did. All in all, he wasn't helpful.

    I called FIOS and scheduled a service call for the next day. I think the pixelation got worse as the evening progressed. This morning I turned on the problem channels and they work no problem. I've tried different problem channels on different tuners and they work. I've had the verizon set-top box connected to the other TV on one of the problem channels and not, and no difference.

    I suspect that there was a problem with their transmission at that frequency that the TiVo is susceptable to. The FIOS tech guy that took the channel numbers probably had someone look into it and they corrected something. The frustrating part (as a software engineer) is there's no way to know. Does anyone know enough about this to know what could or could not affect a particular frequency? Could it be the cables? The FIOS install used all their own splitters. Could be it the cable card (or would that affect all channels similarly)? Is it likely the signal generated at the ONT or from the FIOS area distribution?
     
  17. Mar 7, 2007 #337 of 2214
    flipit

    flipit New Member

    27
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    Aug 29, 2006

    I'm in Richmond, VA, and have had FiOS since early January. Last night, for the first time ever, I had bad pixelation on most of the HD channels. A signal test showed that the signal strength was cycling pretty rapidly between 0 and 90+. No problem with the signal through the FiOS STB.

    Didn't check this morning before work, but I'm hoping it was a temporary transmission problem.
     
  18. Mar 7, 2007 #338 of 2214
    JonInVA

    JonInVA 1080 or bust

    36
    0
    Jan 17, 2005
    Ashburn, VA
    The few times I've had to call Verizon to troubleshoot my CableCARDs, I didn't even mention that I had a TiVo. That way I didn't have to listen to any moronic "Hey Bill! I got another guy with a TiVo on hold, do we even officially support those?" I just said "neither one of my two CableCARD are currently receiving channels XYZ." It kept me from wanting to strangle someone.

    My original FIOS installer explained to me that the signal being sent over the COAX is physically generated by the ONT. This is why FIOS TV customers usually have very strong digital cable signals. Sounds to me like your problem might be a bad splitter, too many splits, a bad run of COAX, or a loose connection. My S3, for example, is only one split downstream from the ONT feed, and my signal strength is usually between 98-100 on every digital channel.
     
  19. Mar 7, 2007 #339 of 2214
    TexasAg

    TexasAg New Member

    648
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    Apr 2, 2006
    You know, I think all of the channels I had problems with pixelization were also in the 400MHz range. Not sure if they were all at the 447MHz range.
     
  20. Mar 7, 2007 #340 of 2214
    hmelman

    hmelman New Member

    12
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    Nov 18, 2006
    Newton, MA
    After a little bit having the TiVo tuned to 80 the pixelation is back. It seems to be time related. If it hasn't been on the channel for a while it can tune it, but after a while it has problems. Perhaps a buffering issue?

    There are two splits to the TiVo. Both splitters installed by Verizon. Previously under comcast there was only one splitter. I can try without the splitter but as it goes to the router, that won't be a viable longterm solution for me.
     

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