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Old 09-28-2006, 08:39 PM   #601
pchunter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ron2go
I called comcast locally and nationally and was told that the cards will not work in the series 3 for my area which is Woodbridge VA. Tivo said that is not correct and will try to help when our series 3 arrives. Has any one else tried from this area?
Im in Montgomery County MD and have had similar problems. I actually got an install scheduled today and after leaving the cards with my wife at home, the installer returned to pick them up as his supervisor said they don't provide cards for 3rd party DVR's. I've been on the phone with several different supervisors and get a different answer from everyone.
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Old 09-28-2006, 09:04 PM   #602
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Originally Posted by Shady
You should get an award for the best first post

Nice letter. Let us know if you get a reply
Thanks. I should say that I spent 7.5 years developing testimony for Qwest defending against issues such as this one in the telecom arena. I will post any further correspondence from the FCC or the Denver government.

Last edited by bxwatso : 09-28-2006 at 09:12 PM.
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Old 09-28-2006, 11:25 PM   #603
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gayste
More info:
I don't see the exact info requested by gregkeene
Here's what i do see:
- Auth Status: CP Auth Received (both cards)
- Prog number: 304 (cc1), 5 (cc2)
- CCI byte: 0x00 (both cards)
- ECM count: 0 (both cards)
- EMM count: 0 (both cards)
- Decryption status: OK (cc1), No ECMs detected (cc2)
- Powerkey status: Not Ready - Waiting for EMMs (both cards)
- EID: 0xffffff (cc1), 0x0 (cc2)
- MKS period: 100 seconds (both cards)
- KSE count: 0 (both cards)

Also, which types of channels are you able to get and having trouble with.

HD Broadcast (e.g. NBC, CBS): yes
HD Expanded (e.g. ESPN HD, Discovery HD): Dont think i get ANY of these
HD Premium (e.g. HBO HD, SHO HD): no
SD Broadcast (e.g. NBC, CBS): yes
SD Expanded (e.g. Comedy Central): spike - yes, bravo - yes, discovery - yes, hgtv - no, comedy - yes, etv - no (seems to be very eratic but i am also not sure what is "expanded")
SD Premium (e.g. HBO, SHO): no

Again, thanks for any information!

This is exactly what happened to me today. The installer put in two CC and both give me similar info on the CP screen, but I'm lacking all th encripted digital and HD channels. HD broadcast is fine and is in HD but the othre HD and premium channesl are not working.
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Old 09-29-2006, 12:03 AM   #604
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FWIW, I got my Comcast bill, and it shows $0 for the cable cards, and no extra "outlet" charges or anything like that. The only change in the total amount of my bill was the removal of the DVR. It was kind of a weird bill, though, because I got the cable cards and removed the DVR part way through the month. Next month will probably be the true test.
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Old 09-29-2006, 12:09 AM   #605
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pchunter
Im in Montgomery County MD and have had similar problems. I actually got an install scheduled today and after leaving the cards with my wife at home, the installer returned to pick them up as his supervisor said they don't provide cards for 3rd party DVR's. I've been on the phone with several different supervisors and get a different answer from everyone.
Call Tivo and get them to help.

The 3rd party DVR line is BS. The Series 3 is a CableLabs approved device. As such, the cable company is REQUIRED to provide the cards.
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Old 09-29-2006, 03:58 AM   #606
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I finally picked up a S3 today, and called Comcast to set up a cablecard install. I'm in Mountain View, CA (Bay Area), and just used the 1-800 number. I got transferred to the "CableCard Department", where I was told that I should call back sometime next week, probably Wednesday, as that is "when [they] will have the new code for the second card for the tivo". She said that right now, if I were to order, I would be charged $12.50/mo for the second card. If I waited until they got the new order code in place, it would be $1.50/mo.

This is all well and good, but we went off into bizzaro-land when I asked if I could place the order now and just be converted to the "new code" once it's in their system... I was told that all subscribers would be "grandfathered in to the old code" and would continue to pay the $12.50/mo; when I asked how those subscribers could go about changing that, seeing as how they'll be providing the same service for much less, I was told that they did not have a procedure in place to do that and that she did not know if it was possible.

I'll be calling back again tomorrow.
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Old 09-29-2006, 04:07 AM   #607
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Don't even settle for $1.50/month. Many people in this area have reported 2 free cards for the first unit.
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Old 09-29-2006, 05:42 AM   #608
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shady
Maybe a silly question, but have you turned it on? (you mentioned "supposedly pre-authorized" which is why I ask). If not, then you should do that, and connect to the TiVo service to automatically get the updated software. It won't hurt to pull in the analog channels as well, then at least it proves you have a cable connection.
So you're suggesting we do the Guided Setup just with the coax, before our CableCard installation appointment? Should we set up coax and antenna both? Is that the current best suggestion?
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Old 09-29-2006, 05:43 AM   #609
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Quote:
Originally Posted by btwyx
Comcast's long term plan is to go all digital, so they shouldn't want to switch you back.
When they do that, though, we'll need a STB again for our Series 2s, eh?
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Old 09-29-2006, 09:38 AM   #610
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Well, I finally got my second card working. My experience with the old card (Motorola v3.34) was that premiums (both HD and Standard) would not come in, nor would my local CBS afffiliate's SD feed (channel 2). A new card (Motorola v4.21) resolved the problems.

My two working cards are Mot v4.05 and Mot v4.21.

I realize that one incident doesn't represent a causal relationship, but I've seen no other mentions of the v3.34 cards, so it seems to me the two may be related.

Those of you still having problems, you may want to check your card's version.
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Old 09-29-2006, 09:48 AM   #611
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bicker
So you're suggesting we do the Guided Setup just with the coax, before our CableCard installation appointment? Should we set up coax and antenna both? Is that the current best suggestion?
Well that's what I did last night... cable only. It seemed to work well. It was a good test of my network connection and the Tivo hardware in general.

I just hope that once I have the cable cards installed that the analog channels will go away forever! My system has ADS, and I don't ever want to see another analog channel pop up on my Tivo after the cable cards are up and running.
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Old 09-29-2006, 09:56 AM   #612
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Cable guy's supposed to be here within the next 4 hours. I've been reading the potential problems he may encounter so I'll be prepared to help him if necessary. I'll post a message to tell you all how it went.
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Old 09-29-2006, 10:08 AM   #613
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Finally up and running - be careful of contractors

Finally up and running here in Natick, MA. 2 weeks after buying the TiVo, and 1week after first botched installation.

I posted my horror story about the installation last week (post #416 in this thread). A quick summary: I had a contractor in last Saturday to do the install. He said he had done a few installations. He couldn't get through to Comcast and said he would call in my information. He checked the local HD channels which worked, and then left. I started checking other channels, and nothing came in. I called in many times for them to hit/re-init the card but nothing ever happened. I tried rebooting, reseating, online help, telephone help. Nothing worked.

Today (trouble call) I get an installer that had never seen a Series 3 TiVo before. I was nervous. I tell him the story, and we both hope that the problem is just that the contractor guy never called in the information (as he only had 1 extra card with him.) He calls dispatch, and then gets transferred to a cablecard technician (name was JASON and was fantastic!!!!!! If you are reading this THANKS!!!).

While he is looing up my info, Jason askes if this is a TiVo. We said yes. I think the installer was relieved that this guy was familiar with the equipment. Installer asks Jason how he knew it was a TiVo, and Jason says the past 2 weeks, any account with 2 cablecards has been for a TiVo. Jason says he has no data for me, other than the serial numbers. Everyone should note, Comcast needs:

CableCard(tm) number
Host number
Data number

Jason and the tech made a few comments how it was ridiculous that the contractor left and did not call in the information. My installer said 'you have to stay until the job is done'. I was happy to hear that, because as we all know, this sometimes takes a while.

My tech passes along this information, Jason says he is sending a hit to the card. Within about 5 seconds I get this error screen (161-4 I think) that I've heard everyone talking about on this forum. Jason knew this would happen, as he had done quite a few TiVos. Jason suggests we go to the other card and give him the information, while the data is coming in for the first card we activated. So we do that, and then I go back to the test channel screen for the 1st card we installed. The tech and I are both excited becuase I HAVE CHANNELS FINALLY!

I should note that we did all of this with both cards installed, as they were still in place from when originally put in by the 1st installer. We did CableCard 2 first. I should also note that it helped that I had typed up my own data sheet with the S/N of the card. Jason said 'let's do 1537 first', and since I had my info, I knew that was the card in slot 2.

So that first card worked, so then we went to CableCard 1 to test those channels. "No channels available". Ugh. We were not pleased. We let it sit a few minutes, but still no channels available. Jason said it could be the card, or it could be that slot on the TiVo (yikes!). He said to swap the cards, so we'd know if it was the card or the port.

We swap the cards (did not reboot TiVo), and then I ask Jason if we should reinput the CC/Host/Data, since I thought that information was attached to the S/N of the card. He deems that to be a good call. He wasn't able to swap the info on his screen, so we had to tell him the info again. The CC(tm) number didn't change, but host and data did.

We go to the card that WAS working. If this card didn't work, we'd know it was the TiVo. No channels. Jason puts us on hold to check some things (he was sitting next to someone else who had done some TiVos and I heard him asking questions.) While we were on hold, I kept checking 'test channels' and finally it was there!! Jason comes back, and we tell him that one card is working. We give him the host/data for the 2nd card. He hits the card. Get the good error message. Then same thing...no channels available. We start to think this is a bad card. I'm upset because we'll have to hang up with Jason, since dispatch needs to handle inputting the new S/N...Jason couldn't do that. And Jason was great. He says if we install a new card, once we get it added to the account, to call back to cable card support and ask for him. Tech goes outside to get the 1 extra card he had. I keep trying 'test channels'. Tried for about 5 minutes, and then magically the channels were there. I tested all my HD channels, HBO, etc. All working. Tech was very happy...I don't think he was too experienced with cable card or TiVo and I don't think he really wanted to start dealing with that. We were both happy.

We shook hands and he left. My appt was 9-11am. He got here at 9:30am. He was here about 35 minutes total I'd say.

At this point, I called Comcast, and said I did not want to pay the $30.05 installation, because it took me 2 appointments where I had to clear my schedule, and that the installation was not done correctly, and told her how my information was never called in. I said the guy who came today and the person he spoke with on the phone were great, and solved the problem, but didn't think I should be charged. She apologized and said she'd have no problem clearing the installation charges. So in the end, my cable card installation was free, and I get 1 cable card for free and the other one for $2.75/month.

Sorry this is so long, but I know we all have a story. Maybe something in here will help someone else.

Dave
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Old 09-29-2006, 10:29 AM   #614
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vukicevic
I finally picked up a S3 today, and called Comcast to set up a cablecard install. I'm in Mountain View, CA (Bay Area), and just used the 1-800 number. I got transferred to the "CableCard Department", where I was told that I should call back sometime next week, probably Wednesday, as that is "when [they] will have the new code for the second card for the tivo". She said that right now, if I were to order, I would be charged $12.50/mo for the second card. If I waited until they got the new order code in place, it would be $1.50/mo.

This is all well and good, but we went off into bizzaro-land when I asked if I could place the order now and just be converted to the "new code" once it's in their system... I was told that all subscribers would be "grandfathered in to the old code" and would continue to pay the $12.50/mo; when I asked how those subscribers could go about changing that, seeing as how they'll be providing the same service for much less, I was told that they did not have a procedure in place to do that and that she did not know if it was possible.

I'll be calling back again tomorrow.
I went in to my local Comcast office yesterday to order two more cards for second Series3 and to ask why I was charged a $6.95 additional outlet charge on the first Series3. I explained once again that both cards go in one TiVo. She checked on her computer and said she had new info that 1st card is free, second is $1.50. My second tivo would be charged as additional outlet at $6.95 plus $1.50 for second card. But...She would not schedule appointment until she could change my billing on the first order and at that point she had no way to do that. She took my number and said she would call me back. Its clear Comcast was not ready for this roll-out of the TiVo 3.
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Old 09-29-2006, 11:13 AM   #615
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The cable installer just left and both my cards are working. Everything went very smooth on the installation. Comcast (formerly Time Warner) Memphis.
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Old 09-29-2006, 11:45 AM   #616
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Quick question: If I remove the Cable Cards from my TiVo and then put them right back in (in the same slots), will I have to have Comcast reauthorize them, or will they continue working as before?
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Old 09-29-2006, 11:52 AM   #617
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bicker
When they do that, though, we'll need a STB again for our Series 2s, eh?
Everyone who still wants analog will need a STB or cable card. That's what the DCT-700 is about, its cheap enough to give away (almost).
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Old 09-29-2006, 11:59 AM   #618
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Originally Posted by sharding
Quick question: If I remove the Cable Cards from my TiVo and then put them right back in (in the same slots), will I have to have Comcast reauthorize them, or will they continue working as before?
They should continue working. Unplugging a card is like turning off the TV its in, a cable card should be able to survivie that. I tried it to look for QAM channels and when I plugged them back in it went through the card discovery process again, popped up the ugly screens and started working again. Then I redid guided setup (and lost the QAM channels I'd scanned in.)
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Old 09-29-2006, 12:12 PM   #619
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Originally Posted by bxwatso
Comcast in Denver is charging me an extra $11.95 per month ($5 extra for an extra HDTV location and $6.95 extra for the rental of a second CableCard) versus the cost of using their proprietary 2 tuner DVR. Here is the letter I wrote the FCC today (same letter to Denver City regulators):
I faxed a copy of the letter to Comcast corporate last night around 5 PM. I got a call this morning at 9AM and two more before 11AM. Not surprisingly, the escalations manager took an interest in my letter.

Anyway, Comcast now says they made an error, although the first 3 people I talked to did not feel this way. They are now willing to charge me only an extra $1.95 per month for the 2nd CableCard. While I think that this is technically wrong, I think it is probably close to their actual cost to provide me an extra card. I am looking forward to verifying this on my upcoming bill.

If anyone has this problem in the future, you need to tell Comcast that the $6.95 for an extra CableCard includes the HDTV fee. You should not be billed an HDTV fee, but just the $6.95, which is the $5 HDTV fee plus the $1.95 CableCard rental fee.

I suppose that should multi-stream CableCards be released, they will eliminate the need for the $1.95 extra fee.
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Old 09-29-2006, 01:16 PM   #620
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I had a great Comcast experience here in Seattle. Picked up 2 CC from the Redmond cable store without hassle. No charge, the lady just added them to my account and told me to have fun with my new Tivo. I got home and installed the cards in the S3, called 1-800-comcast, told them i need to activate to cards, they found them on my account and told me i was good to go.

I was pretty nervious after reading everything in this thread but every channel worked flawlessly on both tuners right away.

Comcast in the Seattle area looks to be the class act right now with regards to setting up a S3.

-james
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Old 09-29-2006, 01:30 PM   #621
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We just got our Cable cards installed yesterday (California East Bay Area).

The installer tech said this was only his 3rd Tivo S3 installed. He left w/o checking that both cards were fully functional.

Result: Cable card #1 works fine, Cable card #2 only a limited # of channels, (2 thru 33), plus the HD mirrors of the basic cable channels.

It's definitely the cards and not the Tivo box itself, b/c when we reverse the order of the cards, the card in slot #1 only gets limited channels, and the card in slot #2 then gets all the channels.

Called Comcast, they tried sending a reset signal to both cards -- no joy.

So a Comcast rep is supposed to make another housecall on Saturday. :-(

At least one cable card works.
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Old 09-29-2006, 03:17 PM   #622
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bxwatso
I faxed a copy of the letter to Comcast corporate last night around 5 PM. I got a call this morning at 9AM and two more before 11AM. Not surprisingly, the escalations manager took an interest in my letter.

Anyway, Comcast now says they made an error, although the first 3 people I talked to did not feel this way. They are now willing to charge me only an extra $1.95 per month for the 2nd CableCard. While I think that this is technically wrong, I think it is probably close to their actual cost to provide me an extra card. I am looking forward to verifying this on my upcoming bill.

If anyone has this problem in the future, you need to tell Comcast that the $6.95 for an extra CableCard includes the HDTV fee. You should not be billed an HDTV fee, but just the $6.95, which is the $5 HDTV fee plus the $1.95 CableCard rental fee.

I suppose that should multi-stream CableCards be released, they will eliminate the need for the $1.95 extra fee.
That's awesome, thanks for the heads up - I'll keep that in mind when I get my next bill and see how things shake out.
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Old 09-29-2006, 03:45 PM   #623
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I had a TiVo S3 installed with 2 cablecards and noticed these charges when I viewed recent activity online:
$18.99 install requiring trip
$6.95 add'l outlet 1
$6.95 add'l outlet 2
$5.00 add'l HDTV service

I went to Novato office and after much discussion with the ladies there, one of them showed me an internal memo regarding Comcast policy on the S3 with 2 cablecards. First cablecard is free, 2nd is $1.50/mo. She would not give me a copy of the memo. Not bad, IMO, but I shall reserve final opinion until I get next bill in the mail. Also the trip charge should be $15.99 (Upgrade of optional services requiring separate trip), not $18.99 (Additional outlet connection requiring separate trip). My account is being adjusted to remove those additional charges totaling $18.90/mo. + $3 and adding in the $1.50/mo.

Also you are entitled to a free cable box if you have digital package and it is connected to the same TV as the S3. I think that is for an SD box, as I have an HD box (DCT-6200) which they are charging additional $5/mo for "HD Equipment Fee".

So far, the S3 is a great box. I am having one channel lineup problem that maybe someone can help me with. I have 2 channels with the ESPN2 HD id, 724 and 725. The actual ESPN2 HD programming is viewed on 724 but the guide has "Regular Schedule" repeated. Chan 725 has a INHD logo showing when viewed but guide shows what is showing on ESPN2 HD. It looks to be a TiVo guide data problem since the 6200's guide has the show descriptions correct. Anyone else have this?
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Old 09-29-2006, 06:21 PM   #624
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Comcast showed this afternoon (on time) and the installer was really unsure about the TIVO install, but he was willing to listen and within 30 min we had both cards installed and running. Said it was the first install in Tivo for his office.

He knew a bit about cable cards but would have been pretty lost running the Tivo without help.

Anyway hopefully all goes well with recordings tonight!
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Old 09-29-2006, 06:32 PM   #625
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The REAL Deal about COMCAST Charges

Special deal for TIVO 3 Series users:
First Card FREE
Second CARD 1.50/Mo
(installation fees will apply)

However, the customer representatives might not all be trained for this, and also their systems do not allow yet to authorize the above deal, although most of customer reps are made aware of this already.

If you want to expedite the installation of your Cablecards, tell them to use the old charge, and then later to revert charges once their systems are setup right.
Better to verify your next bill and call back if need to.

Hope this helps
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Old 09-29-2006, 06:34 PM   #626
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Does anyone else notice the trend that the people doing the self installs (pick up cards at Comcast office) seem to be having more success than the people having the tech install? Amazing waste of money on Comcast's part IMHO.
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Old 09-29-2006, 06:34 PM   #627
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I decided to play CSR roulette again this afternoon.

My billing problems are the charge for the "extra outlet" and that they charged me for the install, after they said it'd be free. (They said it'd be free before I mentioned cablecards, but never mentioned anything about any fees at any time.) I'd tried before, but the extra outlet got very confused as I had an extra box as well at the time, but the rep just refused to take off the last install charge. (They have 3 different charges for the install, most of which are bogus.)

I started off with the statement that I wanted to give them a chance to put things right before I contacted the franchising authority. The extra outlet, she admited was badly named, but was for the 2nd cable card, and did I want to talk to a supervisor. So I asked about the install charges and she promptly removed them. Then it was a question of did I want to talk to the supervisor about the 2nd card charge, I decided not to at that point.

I decided not to, because I was not sure if it was being reasonable to press this point. After they've admitted the charge is misnamed, its a charge for the card. The first card is included in the digital package, they say that much, so I am getting extra equipment from them, so is it reasonable to complain. Particularly as I hear they're reducing the 2nd card charge to $1.50 (from the $6.95). If they did that, I'd be satisfied on this point.
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Old 09-29-2006, 06:36 PM   #628
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Quote:
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Does anyone else notice the trend that the people doing the self installs (pick up cards at Comcast office) seem to be having more success than the people having the tech install? Amazing waste of money on Comcast's part IMHO.
The installers in the self install case are probably, on average, a lot more competent than the other installers. We are a bit "focussed" on these issues and have been obsessing about them for weeks and months. You average company installer doesn't even know what a TiVo is.
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Old 09-29-2006, 07:07 PM   #629
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Finally, something close to 2 weeks after receiving the S3, and after 3 Comcast appointments and innumerable calls to Comcast, my 2 CableCards are working fine now. A Comcast supervisor finished the installation today, and although he was optimistic about it and said that he has installed cards for 3 S3 TiVos before mine, he was still on the phone to the office for over an hour before it all started working.

I won't go into the gory details here. The story is very much like that of many other people who have already posted. Here are a couple of interesting tid-bits from this supervisor's comments though:

1. He didn't think that the 2 cablecards that the installer brought 2 days ago were bad. He said it's very unlikely, in his experience, that both would be bad. More likely, he said, is that neither the tech nor the dispatch operator (?) knew what they were doing.

2. When he first called back to the office, he politely talked to the operator but then told her he would check something here and call back. When he hung up, he told me that he wanted to get a different dispatch operator. This supervisor had a list of certain people back at the office whom he could trust to do the job right.

3. He said that CableCard problems are common in many TV sets, but he thinks the TiVo is good hardware and that if there are problems, it is unlikely due to the interaction of the TiVo with the CableCards.

Good luck to everyone else who has yet to get the cards installed. I was almost ready to go back to DirecTV, but now that it's all connected with Comcast, I'm glad I didn't go back. The picture and audio quality seems better on the S3 than with my DirecTiVo HD on some of the channels that I've checked. But maybe that's just me.

Last edited by cschamp : 09-29-2006 at 07:14 PM. Reason: Minor corrections
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Old 09-29-2006, 07:11 PM   #630
Gregor
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Join Date: Feb 2002
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Quote:
The picture and audio quality seems better on the S3 than with my DirecTiVo HD on some of the channels that I've checked. But maybe that's just me.
It's probably not you. DTV does recompress some stuff to save bandwidth, at the cost of picture quality.
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