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XFinity On Demand - not so good

Discussion in 'TiVo Roamio DVRs' started by markwill, Aug 29, 2013.

  1. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    I received and installed my Roamio Plus last night. Installation was simple and straightforward and, even before I called Comcast to pair my cablecard, I was able to browse a large number of channels. I was missing some channels though and obviously couldn't get into On Demand, so I called Comcast. That's when the fun started....

    In short, after they paired my cablecard (and told to wait 45 minutes, hence getting me off the phone :)) I lost access to a bunch of channels, including stuff like ESPN, etc.

    I do have access to On Demand content - in a way! In short, I can navigate around the content available but when I try to play something I hear audio, see 2-3 seconds of content (so, I basically have permission to see the content) but then it just freezes (no audio and a frozen picture). This happens on any content, 100% of the time.

    I called XFinity again and they seem to have a standard approach = "we'll send a reset, wait 45 minutes and all should be well". They suggest the signal should give me access to the content properly (namely, it actually plays). Of course, it doesn't. I get the same every time and I can't accept that just resending a reset message is magically going to make content play properly.

    This is highly frustrating. Of the various benefits of a Roamio over my old HD, accessing On Demand content was a key attraction. Comcast don't seem inclined to troubleshoot this properly.

    Anyone else have this and find a solution? FWIW, I am in the Seattle area.

    Thanks.

    Mark
     
  2. Big Boy Laroux

    Big Boy Laroux New Member

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    Oct 10, 2006
    Possibly issues with cablecard not being paired correctly. Did you call the CableCard line?

    1-877-405-2298

    Save that number!
     
  3. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    I did and all indications suggest it is paired correctly (diagnostics, what they see on their end, etc). What confuses me is that I would assume - perhaps incorrectly - that if I didn't have a paired cablecard I would not be able to play any content at all. This was the behavior I saw before my initial call to pair the cablecard. After that call, I could get into content, but it now freezes every time.

    Mark
     
  4. Big Boy Laroux

    Big Boy Laroux New Member

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    Oct 10, 2006
    Even with an improperly paired cablecard, you could still get channels. But other things (like premium content, some encrypted channels, etc.) may still have issues.

    Do you have HBO or another premium channel? if so, are those coming through OK?

    If that all checks out, may just be an issue with the XOD feature entirely. I haven't seen anyone report an issue yet, so you may have to try tivo support.
     
  5. cram501

    cram501 Member

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    Oct 22, 2002
    There are two steps to a cable card. Activation and pairing. If the card is activated you would be able to view non-copyprotected channels only. Until it's paired, you wouldn't see copy protected channels. I don't have xfinity so I"m not sure how that would affect their on demand.

    Go to the cable card conditional access screen. The "Auth" field should be "S" if it's activated. If it's not paired you will see a "??" in the "Val" field. If it's paired you should see a "V".

    It's at least a first step in tracking down the problem.
     
  6. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    Yes, I can access HBO.

    I am a little worried about getting into a finger pointing situation (Tivo vs. Comcast). The following threads describe my symptoms precisely, albeit in different geographic regions and not with a Roamio.

    http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb/showthread.php?t=487580

    http://forums.tivo.com/pe/action/forums/displaypost?postID=11038168

    By the way, everything is new for me - new Tivo, new cablecard (picked up from Comcast on Saturday), new cable modem (replaced last week), etc, etc.

    Not looking good :(

    Mark
     
  7. gothaggis

    gothaggis New Member

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    Mar 3, 2010
    at least you have the ability to have On Demand.....my state is listed as being supported (Maryland), however Baltimore City is not supported. Very annoying.
     
  8. Hi8

    Hi8 TiVoPro - wanabe!

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    Mar 6, 2002
    just chill ... it's just ' your turn in the barrel ' it will eventually be working fine. Camcast takes MANY times to fix a problem. You will probably have to have a technician come out to your house, for no good reason. He basically is an eyes and ears for the person at the other end of the phone - who's trying to re-pair for the 5-10 time!
     
  9. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    Quick update...

    • I can see all channels including HBO, for example
    • I have the V indicated on the cablecard diagnostic screen
    • I called the Comcast cablecard phone number and after they reviewed my attempts yesterday they didn't even attempt to resolve the issue (this is a good thing for me - seemed like a waste of time to just do another rest and then wait 45 minutes!)
    • I have a techician coming out tomorrow morning between 8am and 10am (by the way, to be fair to Comcast that is both quick and the two hour window is appreciated)

    Looking at others who have faced this issue and the ease with which I convinced them to send someone out, I'm guessing this is pretty common and costing Comcast a bit to support/fix.

    Mark
     
  10. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Apr 17, 2000
    Nevada
    Sounds like a signal issue. The way it works is basically you request the VOD content and then the app tells your TiVo to tune to a specific frequency to view it. The freezing video with continued audio is what you'd typically see when tuning a channel with a poor signal.

    You should try starting a VOD again, then back out immediately and go to System Information->DVR Diagnostics. Then look at the SNR and signal strength for the tuner that is playing the VOD. If the SNR is below 30 or above 60 or the signal strength is below 70 then that would be the problem.
     
  11. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    Thanks Dan. I am not sure if I was able to back out quickly enough (or how to tell if I did) but when I went through this all my tuners gave a reading of 100 for signal and SNR was 40 (occasionally flickering to 39).

    Mark
     
  12. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

    37,443
    164
    Apr 17, 2000
    Nevada
    Sounds fine.

    Try forcing the VOD to each tuner and see if that makes a difference. To do this start a VOD when nothing is recording, then back out, start recording something and then try again. Repeat until all 5 tuners are going. This will tell you if there is a specific tuner causing the problem.

    If that doesn't work then I'd say have the CableCARD replaced. If your signal is OK and it's not a specific tuner then the only other link in the chain is the CableCARD.
     
  13. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    The XFinity technician is here. Not a good start - he opened by asking for my cable box and then telling me that it's not possible to get On Demand via a Tivo. He was quite positive about this!

    I showed him a press release (from April 2012!) and he's decided it might be possible after all and is researching! Sigh.

    He told me a) he's never heard of this and b) their technicians have never had any training on this.

    Could be a long visit.
     
  14. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    And there's more....

    The technician he spoke with "back at base" did something. Apparently, they had no reference to a Roamio so they set it to a Premier box. That seems weird to me. However, after this we initially received an error when we navigated to On Demand - and then after a while the entire menu disappeared. So, as it stands, there is no On Demand option on my Tivo at all now and I am dealing with someone who doesn't know anything about this.

    If anyone has any real time suggestions for how Comcast should be configuring this that would be good.

    Mark
     
  15. aeternal

    aeternal New Member

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    Jul 3, 2013
    When I got my XL4 back in May i switched from comcast's DVR and followed the instructions for pairing the cablecard. I too had the problem of missing channels and made at least 3 phone calls where the support folks said everything was fine and to keep checking back.

    I finally took matters into my own hands and did some testing. I ended up switching out the coax cable which worked fine on my comcast box to a newer cable and the channels miraculously appeared. It's worth a try especially if you have splitters. it does seem like a signal issue.
     
  16. MScottC

    MScottC Member

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    Sep 11, 2004
    I'm not sure how they need to configure it on their end, but I know that after forcing a restart on both my Plus and my Mini, both of which were booted up for the first time Tuesday evening, last night (Thursday), XFinity on Demand showed up on both TiVos under the "Find TV, Movies & Video" Menu right below Hulu and Netflix. Other than having my cablecard paired, I did nothing special.
     
  17. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    Thanks but I am certain this is not a signal issue. I can view all channels just fine, including Premium channels (HBO, etc). The picture is great and the signal strength always shows 100.

    The issue described in this thread is that XFinity On Demand does not work. before the technician arrived it was starting to play and then freezing. Now he has "progressed" to where On Demand is not even showing up as on option on the Tivo any more.

    Right now he's outside in his car charging his phone. Huh.

    Mark
     
  18. markwill

    markwill New Member

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    Aug 28, 2013
    What fun - the technician has spoken to three different at the support number he uses and NONE of them have heard of the Roamio. The current person is saying it's not supported. Apparently they have a list of Tivo units to choose from and the Roamio is not on the list.

    The fact that the second level technical support folks haven't even HEARD of a Roamio stuns me.

    This is starting to drive me crazy.
     
  19. jadziedzic

    jadziedzic Member

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    Apr 20, 2009
    FWIW, the person I spoke with at Comcast's CableCARD dedicated activation line last night asked me if I had a Premiere or a Roamio ...
     
  20. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

    37,443
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    Apr 17, 2000
    Nevada
    Telling them it's a Premiere should be fine. The two boxes are similar enough in how they work that it shouldn't matter from their perspective.
     

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