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Tivo HD Pixelation Troubleshooting

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by Chimpware, Aug 3, 2007.

  1. Aug 3, 2007 #1 of 1597
    Chimpware

    Chimpware New Member

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    Jan 30, 2002
    Just wanted to start a thread with various troubleshooting measures that have been tested;

    1. Manually rebooted - No Difference.
    2. Upgraded connection cable between wall outlet to Tivo to RG6 from RG59 - No Difference.
    3. Cooled system down from 48 C to 43 C using external fan - No Difference.
    4. Changed from Component to HDMI Connection - No Difference, but resolution switching is more smooth on my Sony VBR2.

    Additional planned testing:
    1. Remove all other connections to my cable line including modem.
    2. Power conditioning maybe.

    Any other thoughts on what I could try?

    EDITED ON 9/6/07: It appears that the issues experience by many users who had SA SCards has been resolved with the 8.17c update. I have downloaded the update and my wife tested (I am traveling and cannot test myself) and during 15 ninutes of viewing she saw no pixelation. Others have tested also and have seen drastic improvement.

    EDITED ON 11/28/07:FIOS Pixelation Fix Update
    FIOS Pixelation Fix
     
  2. Aug 3, 2007 #2 of 1597
    GoHokies!

    GoHokies! O2->CO2 Converter

    2,657
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    Sep 21, 2005
    KFME
    Read the posing guidelines and stop creating duplicate threads on the same topic, for starters.

    I've asked Mike Lang (one of the moderators) if we could have a sticky thread to contain all of the discussion on this topic to one place. This will help to keep clutter down in the forum, and allow people having this problem to have one place to go to see what the latest news is with respect to the problem getting fixed.

    For those unfamiliar with the problem, this "pixelation" problem occurs on all digital channels, although the amount and frequency seem to vary. Some reports tied the problem seems to be tied to folks with 2 Scientific Atlantia S- cards, although it seems that the problem is happening to some folks without SA cards. Tivo has issued one software update already that reportedly cleared up the problem for some folks, but not all of them. A better description of the problem, complete with pictures, is available here at MegaZone's site.
     
  3. Aug 3, 2007 #3 of 1597
    Chimpware

    Chimpware New Member

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    Jan 30, 2002
    Well that's helpful you should apply for a job at Tivo Tech Support.

    I started 3 threads;

    1. To warn potential purchasers about issues with Tivo HD before they spend their money.
    2. To discuss my experience with Tivo Tech. Support.
    3. This thread to discuss trouble shooting the pixelation issue.

    Do the threads get hijacked and people start other discussions? Possibly, but these are 3 separate topics.
     
  4. Aug 3, 2007 #4 of 1597
    Flot

    Flot New Member

    5
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    Aug 2, 2007
    I am seeing pixelation on my Tivo HD in both HD channels and also on the occasional menu screen.

    I am using Component Video 1080i.

    As much as I hated my motorola box, I rarely if ever noticed HD artifacts. In 3 hours of playing with the HD Tivo I am already annoyed by them.

    The only thing in Tivo's favor right now is that my cable cards are not completely activated so I am giving them the benefit of the doubt that maybe the box is off running some process in the background to try to authorize them. But if this continues, the box is going back. I did get the software update with no apparent change.
     
  5. Aug 3, 2007 #5 of 1597
    thepcdoc

    thepcdoc New Member

    18
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    Jul 31, 2007
    hate to kill your hopes but it is not the CCs. I have had the problem since I received my unit. The update did fix the the 2nd slot issue. However I have persistent pixelation every 5 minutes or so. I even once in a while get it on a menu screen as well. It is definitely an issue with the Tivo, whether it is Hardware or Software is another issue.
     
  6. Aug 3, 2007 #6 of 1597
    GoHokies!

    GoHokies! O2->CO2 Converter

    2,657
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    Sep 21, 2005
    KFME
    Yes, like you hijacked the Cable Card self install thread to ***** about your issues too.

    They all center about the same topic. Stop polluting the forums with threads about the same thing, especially in the light of the fact that you're not the only one creating threads about the topic.
     
  7. Aug 3, 2007 #7 of 1597
    Chimpware

    Chimpware New Member

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    Jan 30, 2002
    Uh they are not the same topic...

    You can stop trolling now.
     
  8. Aug 3, 2007 #8 of 1597
    AbMagFab

    AbMagFab What happened, TiVo?

    3,638
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    Feb 5, 2001
    Back on track...

    This isn't a CC issue. I have 6 CC's in my house now (4 on 2 S3's, and 2 on the Tivo HD).

    The S3's are fine.

    I plugged the TivoHD into the same cable, and I get pixellation (on both CC's, for what it's worth). I played with adding and removing splitter (-7db, -4db, etc.) to see what happened. It definitely changed the picture pixellation. So I'm thinking the TivoHD has a more sensitive tuner than the S3?

    I also seem to remember these same issues plaguing the S3 for a little bit. And that they released a couple of upgrades focused on the pixelation?

    Anyway, in addition to the channel pixellation, I see periodic menu pixelation, which is very new. I'm on component on my TivoHD, and HDMI on my S3. I'll probably switch to HDMI on the TivoHD to see if it makes any difference.

    I'm hoping a software update for the TivoHD fixes much of this, just like it did (I think?) for the S3.
     
  9. Aug 3, 2007 #9 of 1597
    aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    19,162
    21
    Jan 31, 2002
    Northern...
    I haven't seen any problem like that with mine. I don't have any cablecards. The only problem I notice with mine is the audio dropping out when scrolling through the guide. Otherwise it seems just as responsive as my Series3 boxes so far. I should have over 60 recorded hours of HD on the TiVoHD tonight. I'll see if that makes any difference.
    I downloaded 7 Amazon unbox shows too. It worked the same as my Sereis 3 boxes.
     
  10. Aug 3, 2007 #10 of 1597
    ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    Jan 2, 2004
    well Truly it has all been related to pixellation issues and cable cards. the customer service stuff was just an annoying side trip and not new news here at all. So really you are starting to get the glow of yet another thread vs good solid new information threads.

    which is not exactly right since you are trying to consolidate the good info and best practices in your posts but that consolidation gets lost when it goes into multiple threads.

    from the first page it just looks like a bunch of threads on the same stuff, as others are making these same kind of threads as well. This happened with the S3 launch as well and a lot of good info got lost in many smaller threads vs one thread consolidated. The recent SDV issues is a good example of this with the new sticky SDV thread helping to keep all the SDV info in one place now versus scrolling off to page 2 or 3 of the thread listings under multiple mini threads
     
  11. Aug 3, 2007 #11 of 1597
    thepcdoc

    thepcdoc New Member

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    Jul 31, 2007
    Which do you like better the S3 or the HD? If you are not getting any pixelation I just might exchange my unit up to an S3 to remove the pixelation crap. It is driving me up the wall.
     
  12. Aug 3, 2007 #12 of 1597
    AbMagFab

    AbMagFab What happened, TiVo?

    3,638
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    Feb 5, 2001
    They are pretty much identical. I don't care about the front display (although it's pretty), and the THX certification, which is nice, I'm not sure has any real effect on the sound quality (as it's just a certification).

    Aside from the pixelation, I can't imagine anyone buying a S3 any more. Unless the price drops to $400 again for the S3.

    Also, I have to believe a software update will fix this, as a I seem to remember similar issues with the S3 at launch.

    However, if I could get a S3 at a similar price, and trade the TivoHD for it, I would do it (only because the S3 is a year more proven, and a couple of software updates deeper).
     
  13. Aug 3, 2007 #13 of 1597
    AbMagFab

    AbMagFab What happened, TiVo?

    3,638
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    Feb 5, 2001
    Not totally true - the TivoHD has a different menu in "Find Programs" where you can directly browse Amazon Unbox, where the S3 requires you to go through Universal Swivel Search, or do it from a PC.
     
  14. Aug 3, 2007 #14 of 1597
    ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

    25,527
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    Jan 2, 2004
    yes the S3 went through the same thing and updates fixed things up. Oddly though there is a mixed bag here of the S3 has more mature drivers but the TiVo HD has some of the more recent menus, such as the TiVocast giving a direct link to downloading UNBOX.

    I think that by the end of the year this will all be moot though as the two converge on code base and the TiVoHd gets driver updates.

    The one remaining differnce may be ability to get a lifetime transfer on the S3
     
  15. Aug 3, 2007 #15 of 1597
    megazone

    megazone Hardcore TiVo Geek

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    Mar 3, 2002
    .worcester.m...
    The menus on the S3 and TiVo HD are identical. If you don't have Download TV & Movies in Find Programs on your S3, something is wrong - that used to be called 'TiVoCast' and that's where the Amazon Unbox menu is.

    And they both have Swivel Search as well.
     
  16. Aug 5, 2007 #16 of 1597
    Chimpware

    Chimpware New Member

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    Jan 30, 2002
    OK, just got a call back from Dave at Tivo Tech. Support, supposedly the level that acts as go between for customers and engineering, as my issue regarding pixelation was escalated to engineering.

    Here is whats I was told:

    1. 8.17b was meant to fix slot 2 issues as well as a large portion of people's issues related to pixelation. When I told him this was not the case from what I have been reading on the TivoCommunity forum, he said he also is having the same issue on his personal Tivo HD, but views it as more of an annoyance than a big issue. I told him that in my opinion what is the point of having an HD device that has poor picture quality, when you could have an SD device with no pixelation, or a cable supplied box that works correctly? To this he agreed.

    2. He claimed they are working on a further update aimed at repairing this issue. When I asked what the ETA was he said he did not have one, but expected it to be in the next month or 2. When I told him most of us were working on a 30 day return window, he said he would pass that along, but was not hopeful.

    So it looks like from what I was told today many of us will be returning our Tivo HD units in the next few week.
     
  17. Aug 5, 2007 #17 of 1597
    lessd

    lessd Active Member

    7,695
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    Jan 23, 2005
    CT
    Is anybody getting this pixelation problem when not using CC ? I have set up two of these 652 TiVos (for friends) and checked the free HD channels and have observed no problems of pixelation or anything else. We are on Comcast Hartford CT.
     
  18. Aug 5, 2007 #18 of 1597
    Globular

    Globular No time to hack

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    Jun 9, 2004
    Groton, MA USA
    They better get this fixed, and fast. I can see the headlines all over Engadget, Gizmodo, Slashdot, etc. "Slew of new TiVo HD units returned due to poor picture quality."

    I'm sorry, I'm a HUGE TiVo fan, but this product release is turning into a disaster! Unless someone from TiVo responds here quickly with assurances that all of us experiencing the problems will be taken care of, and soon, I can't imagine what the backlash will be. I'm very upset at having to act as a beta tester for a inferior product!!

    I need an official response telling me the issue will be fixed ASAP.
     
  19. Aug 5, 2007 #19 of 1597
    Phantom Gremlin

    Phantom Gremlin New Member

    1,555
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    Jun 20, 2002
    Tualatin,...
    I get the pixelation without cablecards. I am using QAM not OTA. I also see pixelation even in the menu screens. My signal strength consistently reads high 90's or 100.

    If you're not seeing the pixelation, you're not watching carefully enough for a long enough time. The interval between events is several minutes and the pixelation only lasts for a few frames. It usually goes away when I hit instant replay. Sometimes it doesn't go away but that just may be bad MPEG from somewhere upstream.
     
  20. Aug 5, 2007 #20 of 1597
    mike_camden

    mike_camden New Member

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    Dec 11, 2006
    I've seen it in the menus and on some HD programming. In my case, it has been several minutes between pixelations (the shortest time frame I observed was about 5 minutes on one of the Discovery shark shows last night). I've not watched anything recorded yet to see if it's there.

    I am using two Motorola s-cards with Comcast for my TivoHD.
     

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