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Old 09-18-2006, 11:30 PM   #1
DiscoBayJoe
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Question Comcast Multi-Stream CableCard?

Has anyone had a successfull Multi-Stream card install with Comcast?

The bad news is that my S3 didn't arrive today (ordered 9/12 w/2Day). UPS shows it as set for 2-day as-ordered (not the 1-day uplift as indicated in other threads) with it hitting their TX Hub at 9PM Friday. This should mean delivery tomorrow afternoon. Unfortunatly this also meant I had to bump (for the 2nd time) my AM Comcast appointment out from Tomorrow AM until Friday.

The potential good news is that while I was on with Comcast he said that I should be getting a Multi-Stream card and would only need one in the Tivo S3. He was the first person at Comcast I had talked to who seemed to have any clue about CableCards. He modified my order to a single card.

Am I going to be really bummed out on Friday with a single-stream card?

I am in the SF/East Bay Area Market.
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Old 09-18-2006, 11:47 PM   #2
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Yours is the first post I've heard where an installer claims to have an M-stream card available.

Keep us posted.
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Old 09-19-2006, 12:33 AM   #3
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I would be surprised if they have Multistream cards, as I've been told repeatedly they won't ship out in quantity until October. Perhaps they have a few and they are giving you one...

Keep us informed.
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Old 09-19-2006, 05:31 AM   #4
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I hope that you are not bumed out on Friday. I would not count on a multi-stream cablecard at all.

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Old 09-19-2006, 08:24 AM   #5
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If what I have read in other threads is correct, a Multi-Stream card won't do you any good. I understand that current CableCARD slots will only provide one way communication even with a Multi-Stream card and the S3s are equipped with one way slots.
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Old 09-19-2006, 08:25 AM   #6
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The one-way slot means you can't do PPV or VOD. But a multi-stream card would allow you to get 2 streams with one card.
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Old 09-19-2006, 08:36 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ereth
The one-way slot means you can't do PPV or VOD. But a multi-stream card would allow you to get 2 streams with one card.
technically up to 5 streams with 1 multistream card, IIRC, but the tivo will only deal with 2 of those streams.
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Old 09-19-2006, 09:08 AM   #8
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I bet the Series 3 is a very big motivator to get Multi-Stream cards out there for the Cable Cos, it will probably cut down on costs for them as far as having double the amount of single stream cards in some users Tivos.
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Old 09-19-2006, 09:16 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amjustice
I bet the Series 3 is a very big motivator to get Multi-Stream cards out there for the Cable Cos, it will probably cut down on costs for them as far as having double the amount of single stream cards in some users Tivos.
Why would that cut down their costs? They would probably much rather charge you for two cards versus one.

I don't understand your logic.
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Old 09-19-2006, 09:24 AM   #10
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Why would that cut down their costs? They would probably much rather charge you for two cards versus one.

I don't understand your logic.
Comcast isnt charging for a second card, since their cards are free and the only charge they could do is a second "outlet" which myself and others have convinced them since its only one device, only one outlet, so I am getting 2 cards for free, hense 1 would cost them less. The only thing that doesnt figure in here is the cost of the Multi stream cards vs the old ones, if the old ones were signifigantly cheaper then it still might cost less to give someone 2 cards
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Old 09-19-2006, 09:26 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by classicX
Why would that cut down their costs? They would probably much rather charge you for two cards versus one.

I don't understand your logic.
I convinced Comcast to not charge me a second outlet fee since they are both going into a single DVR (exact same situation as their 6412)
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Old 09-19-2006, 09:30 AM   #12
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Video OnDemand is not available on the S3, even with a Multi-Stream card. But I understand that pay per view programming that is to be shown outside the OnDemand service is available. You canít order pay per view programming with the press of a button as you can if you have a digital cable box but you can order it with a phone call.
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Old 09-19-2006, 09:32 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by gwsat
Video OnDemand is not available on the S3, even with a Multi-Stream card. But I understand that pay per view programming that is to be shown outside the OnDemand service is available. You canít order pay per view programming with the press of a button as you can if you have a digital cable box but you can order it with a phone call.
I really don't think that is a big deal, we are just keeping our cable box for an extra $5 a month (Comcast). My wife likes to view various shows and movies on-demand so that was a bargaing chip in getting a Series 3.
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Old 09-19-2006, 09:40 AM   #14
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Comcast had previously told me it was going to be $5/mo for the 2nd card, $0/mo for the first. Shaving the 2nd card will pay for 1/2 of Howard if it works as promised.

My goal is to have the S3 and a Comcast STB installed in a single A/V closet as a single outlet. In that A/V Closet I have equipment to send it to my primary TV in HD/THX and to 6 other TV's with a ChannelPlus Modulator/IR-Repeater system.

If all works, I will be able to shave about $80/mo by ditching D* (Video) / SBC (Voice) , and using ComCast Triple Play and Tivo S3. I'll only have HD to one TV, but that's fine.

BTW: The Comcast Digital voice has been great sofar.
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Old 09-19-2006, 09:44 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by DiscoBayJoe
BTW: The Comcast Digital voice has been great sofar.
Thats good, I am thinking we will go with SunRocket for VoIP once we move into our new house later this year, I think it is a little cheaper.
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Old 09-19-2006, 11:53 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amjustice
I really don't think that is a big deal, we are just keeping our cable box for an extra $5 a month (Comcast). My wife likes to view various shows and movies on-demand so that was a bargaing chip in getting a Series 3.
The Comcast FAQ says you can have a cable box for free if your primary outlet device uses cable cards. Something about giving the customer the convenience to use VOD and PPV.
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Old 09-19-2006, 12:43 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jfh3
The Comcast FAQ says you can have a cable box for free if your primary outlet device uses cable cards. Something about giving the customer the convenience to use VOD and PPV.
Where's the source of this? I don't think it's true.
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Old 09-19-2006, 12:45 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jfh3
The Comcast FAQ says you can have a cable box for free if your primary outlet device uses cable cards. Something about giving the customer the convenience to use VOD and PPV.
Oh, and a convenient way to spend more money! Really though, this is good because there are some times that it would be nice to access a VOD. Where did you see that?
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Old 09-19-2006, 03:13 PM   #19
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From the Comcast FAQ:

http://www.comcast.com/customers/faq...s.ashx?ID=2654

(See the bolded text below)

"If I can't get the same services with a CableCARD as I get with a digital cable box, why am I being charged the same price?

Your digital cable-ready TV can receive all of the Digital Cable services you currently enjoy which are included in your monthly subscription fee; however certain features will require a Digital Cable box. In most areas Comcast will provide you with a Digital Cable box at no additional charge for your primary cable outlet. Please call 1-800-COMCAST for details. "
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Old 09-19-2006, 03:24 PM   #20
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I think a lot of people might be mis-interpreting that FAQ. I think they mean that they offer the first STB free with any digital package, so there's no need to get a cable card if you're wanting to save money because you can get one STB for no additional charge. Thats how I read it anyways, you can either have a STB or a cable card for free, and of course they want you to get the STB instead.
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Old 09-19-2006, 04:49 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ah30k
I convinced Comcast to not charge me a second outlet fee since they are both going into a single DVR (exact same situation as their 6412)
It is not the exact situation, in reality.

Yes, for the argument of "outlets" it is the same situation, and if they are billing per outlet, they they ought to bill for one. If you can succeed in getting them to bill per "appliance", all the better.

The reality is that each cablecard or cable box (known as an access device) takes up one entry in the authorisation system, and that has a fixed cost.

Quote:
If I can't get the same services with a CableCARD as I get with a digital cable box, why am I being charged the same price?
See "reality" above. There is a fixed cost for having something authorised.
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Old 09-21-2006, 05:46 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DiscoBayJoe
Has anyone had a successfull Multi-Stream card install with Comcast?

...snip...

The potential good news is that while I was on with Comcast he said that I should be getting a Multi-Stream card and would only need one in the Tivo S3. He was the first person at Comcast I had talked to who seemed to have any clue about CableCards. He modified my order to a single card.

Am I going to be really bummed out on Friday with a single-stream card?

I am in the SF/East Bay Area Market.
Just getting caught up on many of the threads here, and need to take a moment to clarify something. DiscoBayJoe, I'll be sending you a PM as well.

There is currently no certification process for multi-stream cards (MCARD) in uni-directional devices such as the Series3. We are tracking the creation of the certification for this very closely and will work with CableLabs as this certification is finalized and becomes available. In the mean time, you will need two cable cards in your Series3 to enable dual tuner functionality (MCARDs in a uni-directional device act as SCARDs).

This is the first that we've seen an MCARD 'in the wild', they are generally not available. Please let your cable company know that if they only provide MCARDs, that for the time being you will need two for your Series3.

Cheers,
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Old 09-21-2006, 10:33 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by TiVoPony
There is currently no certification process for multi-stream cards (MCARD) in uni-directional devices such as the Series3. We are tracking the creation of the certification for this very closely and will work with CableLabs as this certification is finalized and becomes available. In the mean time, you will need two cable cards in your Series3 to enable dual tuner functionality (MCARDs in a uni-directional device act as SCARDs).
I bothered the Comcast guy who stopped by on Wednesday (happy I went to BB to pick one up since my Tivo from vip didn't show up until today, even with two day air!) and he was extremely skeptical on multistream coming soon and if its even available anywhere yet for use 'in the wild'. The installers and techs seem to have a very skeptical view of cablecard devices just because of the wild variances of issues and how some tv's interact with the card. I can't really say I don't blame them.
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Old 09-21-2006, 11:21 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by jfh3
The Comcast FAQ says you can have a cable box for free if your primary outlet device uses cable cards. Something about giving the customer the convenience to use VOD and PPV.
Its not true in West Hartford CT except for the first HD Cable Box, the 2nd is a lot more than the $2.75 I pay for the CC in my other HD TV.
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Old 09-29-2006, 02:54 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by TiVoPony
Just getting caught up on many of the threads here, and need to take a moment to clarify something. DiscoBayJoe, I'll be sending you a PM as well.

There is currently no certification process for multi-stream cards (MCARD) in uni-directional devices such as the Series3. We are tracking the creation of the certification for this very closely and will work with CableLabs as this certification is finalized and becomes available. In the mean time, you will need two cable cards in your Series3 to enable dual tuner functionality (MCARDs in a uni-directional device act as SCARDs).

This is the first that we've seen an MCARD 'in the wild', they are generally not available. Please let your cable company know that if they only provide MCARDs, that for the time being you will need two for your Series3.

Cheers,
Pony

Can you elaborate a little more?

Is this a matter of getting certified or do you guys need to make changes to the software- or both?
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Old 09-29-2006, 05:08 PM   #26
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Sounds to me like CableLabs hasn't finalized the multi-stream CC STB side of the certification process. They definitely have finalized the certification process side of multi-stream CCs as there are a number of CCs which have gone through and passed this certification.

The S3 was the first device I was aware of that was 'suppose' to support multi-stream cards, and I suspect it is capable of doing so, but doesn't have CableLabs seal of approval yet. This stinks of typical CableLabs feet dragging.

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Old 09-29-2006, 06:21 PM   #27
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What I'm wondering though is what really happens if you stick an M-card in it?

IS TiVo obligated to say "it's not approved" and please dont use an m-card in it? But really it will work fine?

But to get the second one to pair and all that I have to assume that tivo wont pair both tuners to the first card. So why not? Tivo must have somethign set to force m-cards in the first slot to fall back to s-card mode.
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Old 10-03-2006, 12:46 AM   #28
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Quote:
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What I'm wondering though is what really happens if you stick an M-card in it?
It falls back to single-stream interoperability mode like it is supposed to in a Unidirectional Host Device at this time.
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Old 12-09-2006, 11:35 PM   #29
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Any updates on this?
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Old 12-10-2006, 03:41 AM   #30
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CableLabs recently approved a certification process for M-Card CC 1.0 host devices, like the S3. TiVo was one of the companies that worked with CableLabs to develop that. Now that there is a procedure TiVo can work on implementing it in the S3.
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