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Old 12-10-2006, 07:48 AM   #1441
bicker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiamiMan
You mean the CableCard slots are designed for a particular version of CableCard?
No. I mean the cable companies can make it so that with a CC1.0 card in the slot you only can get a few channels.
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Old 12-10-2006, 09:25 AM   #1442
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlib
MiamiMan, you said you have an additional HD set top box, though. If you got rid of that you would get rid of the "HD Service Fee" even if you kept the S3.
My understanding is that I would still have to pay the $5.00 HDTV fee.

Bicker-- If the cable company can make the CC1.0 card limited, then doesn't this violate the spirit of the FCC requirements? If Comcast sees a loophole, then surely the FCC could simply issue a new order.

By the way, I suspect there's some confusion about CC2.0 which has been mentioned in this forum. I tried to find information on this new CC2.0 card but I can't find anything on the internet. A version 2 CableCard would be big news, so where is the scoop?

I did, however, find something about CableLabs certifying a new multistream CableCard (or M-Card). which allows decoding of two digital signals simultaneously, but these are still considered class 1.0 devices. Shouldn't they be able to work in a Series 3?

(I tried to post the url to the site, but the tread didn't allow it).

I would guess that the M-Card would work in a Series 3 but only as a single stream. After all it' still a version 1.0 card, right? Of course it would still take 2 M-Cards, but it should work just like the old single-stream cards. In the future, Tivo could design their sets with just one CableCard slot to work with the M-Card.

If the M-Card (or CC2.0) can't work in a Series 3 as a single stream, where is the information that confirms this. Is this what Tivo is saying?
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Old 12-10-2006, 09:44 AM   #1443
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I found this from the National Cable & Telecommunications Association dated September 25, 2006 (edited):

---------------
Multistream CableCARDs. CableLabs has qualified a Multistream CableCARD device from CISCO/Scientific-
Atlanta. Since our last report, CableLabs has qualified a Multistream CableCARD device from
Motorola. So, both Motorola and CISCO/Scientific-Atlanta MultiStream CableCARDs are now
qualified.

The Multistream CableCARD will operate in a backwards compatible, single-stream manner with a single stream device (e.g., in a unidirectional digital cable ready device) or in the multi-stream manner when paired with a multi-stream device (e.g., OCAP 2.0 devices). . . . CableCARDs will be available from major MSOs within the next few months.
---------------

It appears to me that the new M-Cards should work in a Series 3.
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Old 12-10-2006, 09:50 AM   #1444
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiamiMan
If the cable company can make the CC1.0 card limited, then doesn't this violate the spirit of the FCC requirements?
Laws and regulations are written down so that everyone can know what is actually required. "Violating the spirit" is a term often used by people unhappy with the fact that they didn't get their way in terms of the laws and regulations -- that the laws and regulations didn't require what they wanted the laws and regulations to require. This is very common, since laws and regulations typically balance opposing needs. In this case, the FCC's regulations balance what's good for consumers and what's good for investors in companies that provide service. That balance means that neither side gets what they really want.

The FCC regulation requires that cable companies support consumer electronics. It does not and will not ever require them to support CableCard (1.0 or even 2.0) forever. CC1.0 has been supported for a while, and eventually it would make sense to move to CC2.0. Consumers relying on CC1.0 to last them forever are operating on a false assumption. More and more now, in our highly technological society, consumers have the same obligation to keep up with the latest technology as service providers do.

Quote:
If Comcast sees a loophole, then surely the FCC could simply issue a new order.
It's not a loophole. It's a deliberate measure of flexibility in the regulations, provided so as to provide sufficient incentive for business to innovate, and be able to adequate serve the needs of investors, you and me trying to earn enough money for a comfortable retirement.

Here's the information on CableCard 2.0 that you're looking for:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CableCARD#CableCARD_2.0
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Old 12-10-2006, 10:43 AM   #1445
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bicker -- I understand your concern and I agree that Comcast shouldn't have to support CableCard forever, but the same applies to any service or device. But I don't think that's the issue that concerns us now. Right now, the cable companies do have to support CableCard. Some people on these forums (I was one) fear that the new M-Cards that are being released will somehow obsolete the Series 3 box. I see no evidence of this at all. Everything I'm reading suggests that the M-Cards will work fine with the Series 3, and will work just like the old single-stream CableCard. I also read that Tivo had already planned for the M-Cards but because of delays, they had to include 2 CableCard slots.

CableCard 2.0 isn't out yet so that's not a concern right now. Even when it comes out, I don't see how it would obsolete the Series 3. Once I have my CableCards (CC1.0) installed and working, it shouldn't cost Comcast a cent more, so why shouldn't they support them? I will still have the Comcast box for PPV, etc. so why would Comcast not support them? Five years down the road, these issues may be entirely different, and I expect (and hope) that the technology will grow dramatically. Tivo (or some other manufacturer) will probably come out with a device that will make the Series 3 obsolete. I still have a Series 1 and a Series 2 but my Series 3 makes them obsolete to me. Great. I don't expect support forever, but I do expect something better down the road to replace it.
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Old 12-10-2006, 11:54 AM   #1446
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiamiMan
If the M-Card (or CC2.0) can't work in a Series 3 as a single stream, where is the information that confirms this. Is this what Tivo is saying?
Ok, wait, you're confusing two completely different things.

There are THREE types of cablecards.

CableCard 1.0- Regular single stream cable cards that are in use now.

Multi-Stream CableCard 1.0- Multi-stream version of a cablecard 1.0, which was approved 7/6/2006 by CableLabs. The purpose of this card is to allow multiple tuners to work off of a single card. It appears the Series3 can support these with a future software update. Without the update, this card will function as a single stream card.

CableCard 2.0- Support two-way features such as Pay-per-view, Video on Demand, more advanced programming guide. CableCard 2.0 is not compatible with CableCard 1.0 devices.

Since there aren't really any TV's or STB's that support CableCARD 2.0, I doubt they are being rolled out by comcast. The cable guys probably don't know what they are talking about or are talking about a multistream 1.0 card.

Regardless, if they ARE supporting cablecard 2.0, they won't work in the Series 3. Maybe in the next generation Series3?

As far as cable company's not supporting cablecard, thats ridiculous. It is mandated that they start installing STB's that use cablecard vs. integrated security. Granted, they will be cablecard 2.0, but they will be supporting cablecard!
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Old 12-10-2006, 11:59 AM   #1447
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Here is what Pony said about this a while back.

Among other things, it says:
Quote:
(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.
Unless I'm mistaken, SCARDS are what we have now.
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Old 12-10-2006, 01:01 PM   #1448
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiamiMan
Some people on these forums (I was one) fear that the new M-Cards that are being released will somehow obsolete the Series 3 box.
That I don't see. CC2.0 might, but M-Cards won't.

Quote:
CableCard 2.0 isn't out yet so that's not a concern right now.
The point is that CC2.0 supports everything that the cable companies see wrong with CC1.0. Since, as you point out, they have to support some means of supporting CE devices, they have a great incentive to move from CC1.0 to CC2.0 as soon as they possibly can.

Quote:
Even when it comes out, I don't see how it would obsolete the Series 3.
"Obsolete" is a strong word, and not a word that I have ever used in this context. Rather CC2.0 will provide a means for cable companies to quickly eat-away at the value the S3 represents to its owners. In a way that might be "good" for both the cable companies and TiVo: The cable companies restore their VOD and PPV channels. TiVo gets to sell a new series of DVR to the same early adopters who just a handful of years prior bought the S3 at the early-adopter price. The issue, though, this time, is that the S3 is too late -- we already can see the S4 on the horizon, and so many aren't going to buy the S3 that would have done so perhaps as little as a year earlier.

Quote:
Once I have my CableCards (CC1.0) installed and working, it shouldn't cost Comcast a cent more, so why shouldn't they support them?
Indeed. However, they can start moving services from CC1.0 to CC2.0 and for each you'll be faced with the choice between upgrading to a different STB (and thereby losing the remaining value in your S3) or doing without. While you might think the cable companies would have a motivation not to do that, because it would make you angry and maybe make you switch to satellite, the cable companies actually have a much better idea about how many people would fall into your category. From all their actions, it seems clear that they know that this is a really small category of customer, that no one is really quite concerned about, with the possible exception of TiVo, a very small company.
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Old 12-10-2006, 04:32 PM   #1449
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Comcast Basic Cable with HD network Channels and Tivo

We just purchased a Tivo S3.

We have comcast basic cable (in Reston, VA) and on our HDTV, we get the network HD channels.... (NBC, CBS, etc...)

When we plug that same cable into the Tivo box, it does not find those network HD channels.

We have not gotten a cableCard yet, but were expecting to see what we saw with the cable plugged directly into our HDTV.

Anyone else have this problem? Any advice?

Do we need the cableCard to see the network HD channels?

Thanks,

Karen
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Old 12-10-2006, 04:47 PM   #1450
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arangok
We just purchased a Tivo S3.

We have comcast basic cable (in Reston, VA) and on our HDTV, we get the network HD channels.... (NBC, CBS, etc...)

When we plug that same cable into the Tivo box, it does not find those network HD channels.

We have not gotten a cableCard yet, but were expecting to see what we saw with the cable plugged directly into our HDTV.

Anyone else have this problem? Any advice?

Do we need the cableCard to see the network HD channels?

Thanks,

Karen
You're not seeing them because you only have basic (presumably analog) cable service. You'll need to subscribe to digital cable to see the network HD channels, but you shouldn't need CableCard.
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Old 12-10-2006, 05:03 PM   #1451
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arangok
We just purchased a Tivo S3.

We have comcast basic cable (in Reston, VA) and on our HDTV, we get the network HD channels.... (NBC, CBS, etc...)

When we plug that same cable into the Tivo box, it does not find those network HD channels.

We have not gotten a cableCard yet, but were expecting to see what we saw with the cable plugged directly into our HDTV.

Anyone else have this problem? Any advice?

Do we need the cableCard to see the network HD channels?

Thanks,

Karen

You might do a channel scan to see what comes up. I would think if your TV can see HD channels, then your TiVo will be able to as well. However, for you to get the TiVo guide data to match up with the channels, you may need to get cablecards.
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Old 12-10-2006, 05:10 PM   #1452
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arangok

Do we need the cableCard to see the network HD channels?

Karen
I also just got my S3 and I don't have the CableCards installed yet and I get the network HD channels (although the channel numbers use seven characters instead of three). Did you go through the channel set up and choose Comcast? You might also try using the Channel Scan feature.
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Old 12-10-2006, 05:16 PM   #1453
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Thanks for all the responses. We were able to see the network HD channels when the cable was plugged directly into the HDTV.

I did a channel scan, and it found a lot of HD channels.... in fact, the funny thing is.... I was able to see channels, like 110-01.... which is an On Demand channel... they were in the clear, unencrypted... I was really surprised at this. I could see all of the OnDemand that my neighbors had ordered.... even the XXX stuff... yikes...

But, not able to get NBC-HD.... which when plugged directly into my TV came in as channel 4-5.

Any ideas on what higher numbers the network channels came in on... I could type it in manually and see if I get it.
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Old 12-10-2006, 05:26 PM   #1454
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Quote:
I did a channel scan, and it found a lot of HD channels
I meant to say digital channels... some were in HD, but others were SD.

Also, most of them were encrypted, only a few were in the clear, and I could see what was on them. The channels were like 83-1..... all the way through 113-1 or so, with lots of sub channels.
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Old 12-10-2006, 05:29 PM   #1455
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arangok
But, not able to get NBC-HD.... which when plugged directly into my TV came in as channel 4-5.
4-5 is a logical channel, not the physical RF channel. If your TV can tell you what the RF equivalent is, use that to find it on the S3.
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Old 12-10-2006, 05:35 PM   #1456
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arangok, in the Miami Fl area, Tivo assigns the NBC HD channel as 118-211 (or 118-11 in the Info window) but these channel assignments vary depending on the cable provider. Try starting at 100 and single stepping though all the channels and see what you get.
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Old 12-10-2006, 05:39 PM   #1457
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arangok
We just purchased a Tivo S3.

We have comcast basic cable (in Reston, VA) and on our HDTV, we get the network HD channels.... (NBC, CBS, etc...)

When we plug that same cable into the Tivo box, it does not find those network HD channels.

We have not gotten a cableCard yet, but were expecting to see what we saw with the cable plugged directly into our HDTV.

Anyone else have this problem? Any advice?

Do we need the cableCard to see the network HD channels?

Thanks,

Karen
The TiVo will receive these channels, but without calecards it is not capable of providing guide information. Hopefully at some point TiVo will address the issue.

If you can't get your locals OTA, you'll need to get cablecards.
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Old 12-10-2006, 06:05 PM   #1458
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c3
4-5 is a logical channel, not the physical RF channel. If your TV can tell you what the RF equivalent is, use that to find it on the S3.

Yeah, great idea. We thought of this also.... we have a samsung dlp hdtv, and it does not give us that mapping between logical channel and rf

or... we do not know how to get it... any ideas on this? Is there a website you would recommend that has the mapping? perhaps for Reston, VA?

I appreciate everyone's help... I am so frustrated!
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Old 12-11-2006, 02:20 PM   #1459
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Success in Puyallup, WA (near Tacoma). Picked up Tivio S3 on Thurdsay, picked up Cable Cards on Friday, then installed and connected CableCards on Saturday. Although the Comcast CSR had some reservations with the Cable Cards, we had no problems and were done within 20 minutes.
Thanks to all who have posted previously and passed along their knowledge and experience!

Last edited by BMWDobro : 12-11-2006 at 02:21 PM. Reason: sp
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Old 12-11-2006, 02:51 PM   #1460
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Originally Posted by arangok
Yeah, great idea. We thought of this also.... we have a samsung dlp hdtv, and it does not give us that mapping between logical channel and rf

or... we do not know how to get it... any ideas on this? Is there a website you would recommend that has the mapping? perhaps for Reston, VA?

I appreciate everyone's help... I am so frustrated!
So, it turns out that the frequency that Comcast is broadcasting its network HD channels is coming through on channel 112-xx.... and Tivo is not picking them up. We can see that the channel is there and it has a strong signal strength... but it looks like it is encrypted.

I think we have to get a cableCard to see them.
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Old 12-11-2006, 03:16 PM   #1461
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NBC-HD is encrypted??? That's unusual.
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Old 12-11-2006, 05:58 PM   #1462
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Comcast Redmond, WA

I'll just put in my experience in the past 2 days. I live near Seattle and went to the Redmond Comcast store and had a very good experience (as others did here). Both cablecards are free and the woman at the counter told me they keep 5-10 in stock per day but run out quickly. No hassles and we even talked about the Tivo S3 since her husband was thinking of it. She said the Comcast DVR's are pretty bad (no surprise).

She said a 3rd cablecard or more would cost $1.50 each/month.

Contrast that to the chat rep I had a fight with online about this issue. I was just trying to get the address of the local store and he kept telling me it was $5 per card and there was no way I could get them for no fee. Finally I just told him to forget it and he gave me the address. I guess some reps just like to annoy people.

If you don't get it for free, I would try another avenue (phone, local store, etc). Some areas probably aren't as good as the one I dealt with though.
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Old 12-11-2006, 06:21 PM   #1463
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c3
NBC-HD is encrypted??? That's unusual.
We called Tivo Customer Service..... found out that the Tivo tuners do not tune in the "Over the Air" Network channels... so, if Comcast is just feeding the HD signal from the satellite into the cable in the "Over the Air" format, then Tivo can not handle it.

The customer service rep said that it is a known issue and the engineers are working on it.... so, it makes me believe that we will need to get the cableCard in order to see the network HD channels.....

But, I can see all of my neighbors' OnDemand all I want.... what a funny world we live in.

Karen
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Old 12-11-2006, 06:39 PM   #1464
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arangok
We called Tivo Customer Service..... found out that the Tivo tuners do not tune in the "Over the Air" Network channels... so, if Comcast is just feeding the HD signal from the satellite into the cable in the "Over the Air" format, then Tivo can not handle it.

The customer service rep said that it is a known issue and the engineers are working on it.... so, it makes me believe that we will need to get the cableCard in order to see the network HD channels.....
Huh? ATSC uses 8VSB, and cable uses QAM. CableCard has nothing to do with it. Is the CSR confused, or am I confused?
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Old 12-11-2006, 07:14 PM   #1465
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Wow.... called Comcast.... and somehow got 2 cableCards to be installed tomorrow..... with NO additional charge....

We have limited basic... no digital service..... and hope that this allows us to see the network HD channels.

Is it possible that Comcast is sending 8VSB in addition to QAM signals? If so, then is it possible that Tivo is not decoding the 8VSB signals as part of the cable input?
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Old 12-11-2006, 08:05 PM   #1466
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arangok
Is it possible that Comcast is sending 8VSB in addition to QAM signals? If so, then is it possible that Tivo is not decoding the 8VSB signals as part of the cable input?
It won't on the cable input, you'd have to split it and send it to the OTA input as well to receive those.
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Old 12-12-2006, 08:01 AM   #1467
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Signal problem solved

Quote:
Originally Posted by djnewlin
Debbie,

Are you using an amplifier? If so, have you tried bypassing it for a few days to see if your new problem still occurs?

Have you tried unplugging your Comcast cable box for a couple of days, to see if your S3 still loses its signal strength at 10 p.m.?

Just some thoughts

Good luck!

Doug

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Turns out the signal problem was out on the pole. Comcast came and fixed the problem in one day.
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Old 12-12-2006, 11:50 AM   #1468
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Question Bottom Line with Comcast and Series 3?

I am a devoted Tivo user that is ready to go HD, and so am of course very curoius about the Series 3. But I would like to hear more overall impressions about how well it works with Comcast before making the financial commitment. If there are already threads and posts about highs and lows of the Tivo 3 user experience with Comcast, can someone please point me to them? If not, or additionally, I would love to hear general impressions from folks already using the arrangement.

I also have some specific questions:

First, right now, my Series 2 changes the channels on my Comcast (motorola) set top box, and it is a very slow and clunky arrangement. So much so that I cannot "flip" through the channels using the channel up and channel down buttons (a guilty pleasure of mine), unless I am willing to wait many many seconds between channels. Does having the two Comcast cards in the Series 3 Tivo make this any better? How seamless is it?

Second, I understand that with the cablecards, I will not be able to use pay-per-view, on-demand. I'm fine with that -- I've never used them before. But I also hear that the cards prohibit using a program guide. Does this just mean that I will not get the COMCAST program guide? I presume I'll still get the same user-friendly Tivo program guide that I enjoy on my Series 2 and that can be used for scheduling recordings, etc.?

Thanks in advance for your help.

Last edited by Tivaxion : 12-12-2006 at 12:03 PM.
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Old 12-12-2006, 01:58 PM   #1469
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Well, it took 3 hours, but my tech finally got the TiVo working. He had to swap out one card, and call for multiple hits, but everything is up and running wonderfully.

I have a question, though: the firmware version on one card is 04.21, while the other card's firmware version is 04.05. Both are working perfectly. Should I worry about getting the newer firmware version, and if so, how do I go about getting it?

Thanks!
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Old 12-12-2006, 03:20 PM   #1470
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Well, I've inherited the dreaded CableCard install problems.

A Comcast cableguy comes with 2 CableCards. He's never heard of Tivo and doesn't know anything about CableCards other than what they look like and how to call in the serial numbers. He claims he's never had a successful install (just great). He's nice, however, and willing to work with me. I show him the Tivo install instructions and tell him where to put the cards, and to put a card in slot 1 first, etc. He calls the serial numbers in and they authorize the cards and send the signals. Funny, no information on the screen whatsoever. No Error 161-4, no pairing, nothing. Nevertheless, after about 10 minutes, the cards begin to work. I get all my channels including HBO-HD. The cableguy is amazed. I'm as happy as a bug-in-a-rug. I thank the cableguy and he leaves.

About 1 hour later and I lose my premium channels on both CableCards. I get a blank screen on HBO-HD and several other HD channels, including a few Standard Definition channels, but all the rest of the channels come in fine. I call Comcast and ask what to do. The operator doesn't know about Tivo or about CableCards. I ask her to send a "hit" to the cards. She doesn't know what that means. She goes to speak to someone offline. She comes back and says the signals were sent and that after about 15 minutes I should remove the cards and put them back in to reset them. I do this. The same channels are missing (damn).

Note, both CableCards have the same channels missing so I figure it's probably not a problem with the CableCards and, besides, they were both working before.

So I figure maybe I have to wait a few hours and so I decide to wait until tomorrow morning. The next day I check the CableCards, and the same problem exists. I look at the information on Conditional Access window and note that Cablecard 1 says, "Auth: MISSING_PROGRAM_REKEY" CableCard 2 says, "Auth: unknown" (I have no idea what this means.) Both cards are Motorola version 04.21.

I call Comcast again and ask to speak to someone who knows about CableCards. She connects me to the technical department. However, the person I speak to doesn't know about CableCards either. So I give instructions that I found on this site (thanks calitivo). For CableCard 1, I give her the SN and tell her to send an "initialize" signal. She does this, and I wait a few minutes but I don't get any messages on the screen. I tell her to send a "hit" signal and she claims she does this. Still nothing. After about 15 minutes, I pull the cards out again but, again, nothing.

Later that day, I called Comcast for the third time and ask for help. The operator tells me that she sees order instructions for my CableCards and explains to me that it takes an hour or so for them to take affect. So now it's been over 4 hours, and I still have the missing channels.

I check the Conditional Access window to see if anything has changed. Card 1 still says, "Auth: MISSING_PROGRAM_REKEY", but Card 2 now says, "Auth: SUBSCRIBED" There's been a change! However, both cards are still missing the same channels.

I have no idea what to do. I can't anyone from Comcast who knows anything about CableCards or about pairing, or error messages, or how to troubleshoot. It appears they only know four things: 1) The name "CableCard", 2) How to send a signal to the Cards, 3) That I should remove them and put them back in to "reset" them. 4) wait awhile until they work.

I am running out of ideas, can anyone help me out?
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