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Old 01-27-2007, 10:48 AM   #391
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beaubreeden
I agree with you on that part. However, after dropping more than a grand on my new equipment, I don't think it would be economical to decide against it at the last moment and rent the DVR box... put my S3 in the hallway closet for storage (blasphemy!!!)
Agreed. Telling somebody who just spent in the neighborhood of a grand on an S3 that the cable box is a better deal is not really as much a sales pitch as it is a belaboring of the obvious. We knew all of that and decided to buy S3s anyway. The cable company folks need to accept that and stifle themselves. If it was just a matter of money we would have kept the cable company’s rental box and not have bought an S3 in the first place.
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Old 01-27-2007, 10:54 AM   #392
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Originally Posted by gwsat
If you consider only the economics in choosing between an S3 and a Cox owned box, the Cox box wins hands down, it seems to me. Thus, the Cox sales pitch has some merit. It doesn’t take long to figure out that the dollar difference between a no-risk rental of a Cox box for less than $10 a month and the nearly $1,000 it takes to buy an S3 and a TiVo subscription is HUGE.

That said, you get what you pay for and the S3 is vastly superior to any cable company’s DVR. That’s why so many of us, me included, have overlooked economics and bought an S3 anyway.

I figure I wasted hundreds of dollars based on my frustration alone using the Cox DVR. Granted, I was reluctant to spend the extra money on the Tivo 3, but after a couple of months of using the Cox DVR I was compelled to make the purchase. The Cox DVR made me do it! If it worked in any intuitive matter whatsoever I probably would've waited to buy a Tivo until it hit the $200-$300 price point-- if I ever bought one at all! However, if Tivo married a crack addict and had a kid, I'd bet that screwed up kid would behave better than the Cox DVR!
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Old 01-27-2007, 11:28 AM   #393
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwar9999
I figure I wasted hundreds of dollars based on my frustration alone using the Cox DVR.
I can't say I've seen the Cox DVR in action. I wish I had so I had something to say back to the Cox tech when he was trying to sell it. I did bring up the HMO and ethernet connectivity, which did astound him.

To end the discussion with him, I just told him I was a TiVo fanatic who didn't know any better and was hooked on the TiVo crackpipe. (He looked sketchy, I figured he'd understand that reference.)
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Old 01-27-2007, 11:41 AM   #394
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Originally Posted by beaubreeden
I can't say I've seen the Cox DVR in action.
Consider yourself extremely lucky. This review of the product says it all:

Cox SA 8300HD Review
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Old 01-27-2007, 12:02 PM   #395
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Visit #2 for the cablecard install. Tech was here less than 5 minutes. Card failed, didn't have any of the Cox information on it, as if it hadn't been initialized. He promised to come back before 1:30p.

Anyone have luck in getting installation fee waived when having problems like this?
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Old 01-27-2007, 12:10 PM   #396
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Originally Posted by beaubreeden
Anyone have luck in getting installation fee waived when having problems like this?
Talk to a customer service supervisor and explain to them how inconvenient this was for you that they have to take atleast 3 attempts to install it. They should've been able to do it the first time and absolutely have been prepared for it the 2nd time (since the first time failed). Now you're stuck waiting for them to arrive... again. A supervisor will be able to waive the fees, no problem. Anyone else but a supervisor will give you the runaround.
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Old 01-27-2007, 12:48 PM   #397
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwar9999
Consider yourself extremely lucky. This review of the product says it all:

Cox SA 8300HD Review
FYI, the SA DVR is only used in select Cox markets. Many Cox markets have the Motorola DCT64xx with Passport Echo which has become a pretty decent & stable solution.
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Old 01-27-2007, 01:34 PM   #398
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The SA 8300HD proved to be a reliable DVR in my installation, although its SARA software is very limited. The thing performed as advertised; it reliably recorded shows as scheduled and played them back appropriately. But its user interface was brutal and its ability to find a show to record for you ranged between weak and nonexistent. I could go on and on about its weak software but you wouldn’t want to see a grown man cry.

I gather that the Motorola DVRs Cox uses in some markets have software that is dramatically superior to the SARA software they use on many, maybe most, of their SA boxes. That’s faint praise, I know, but there it is.
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Old 01-27-2007, 02:41 PM   #399
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Visit #2.5

Cox guy showed back up from his previous appearance this morning. This new card wasn't initialized either! He suggested I just leave it in the S3 to see if it would start working later tonight.... I asked him how it was going to work without him calling in the Host, Unit, Data, etc. since those numbers were all 0000s since it wasn't initialized. Good point, he said.

He wanted to do like the guy last night wanted to do, claim a successful install so it doesn't count against his service record, and then have me request a new service ticket to replace it later.

So, visit #3 is setup for Mon 8a-10a. I suggested they bring more than one card next time, in case it doesn't work.
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Old 01-28-2007, 11:10 PM   #400
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Exclamation Cox Las Vegas Blocking Recording

Well, early last week I noticed a couple of recordings I made had been deleted because the channel has been flagged as "copy never" (CCI byte 0x03). Friday I discovered that all digital channels except the broadcast HD channels had been set that way. According to the FCC, Cox is not allowed to do that. After two calls to Cox, they insist it is not their issue and that the only thing they can do anyway is send a tech out (for which I must pay). I have tried on both occasions to explain the issue to them, which is that someone at Cox, Las Vegas has set the CCI byte to 0x03 on the non-broadcast digital channels instead of 0x00 (copy freely) or 0x02 (copy once).

If you are in the Cox, Las Vegas service area, I encourage you to check this (do that by getting both tuners onto something like BBCA and DIY) and then check the Cablecard CP screen (in settings) and see what you see for the CCI byte. I further encourage you to call Cox Las Vegas to log a service problem and contact the local franchise authority (the cities of Henderson, Las Vegas, or North Las Vegas).

I'm including the text of my complaint below:

On Thursday January 25 I discovered that Cox Communications, has set all digital channels to what is known as "copy never" (CCI byte set to 0x03). This has the effect of rendering a competing DVR product (the TiVo Series 3) useless while the Cox DVR continues to function normally.

This is a direct violation of FCC Regulation 76.1904 section a.1.ii, which clearly states that Cox may only set the CCI byte on non-premium subscription services to copy freely (0x00) or copy once (0x02). I have made two attempts with Cox to clear this matter up, and they have indicated that the problem is not theirs. I am now being forced to pay for a technician to visit my apartment so that he can fail to fix a problem that has resulted from an intentional and deliberate attempt on the part of Cox to stifle competition in this area.

Thank you for your attention in this matter.
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Old 01-29-2007, 07:55 AM   #401
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Where can you see the CCI byte setting? Mine all say:

'Due to Restrictions set by the copyright holder, this recording: Cannot be transfered to VCR, DVD, or any other media device. To learn more blah blah blah'.

This sounds like 'No further copying is permitted' from Tivo.com/copyprotection.
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Old 01-29-2007, 08:21 AM   #402
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn95GT
Where can you see the CCI byte setting? Mine all say:

'Due to Restrictions set by the copyright holder, this recording: Cannot be transfered to VCR, DVD, or any other media device. To learn more blah blah blah'.

This sounds like 'No further copying is permitted' from Tivo.com/copyprotection.
If you go to Messages & Settings -> Settings -> Remote, CableCARD, & Devices -> CableCARD Decoder -> select one of the cards -> CableCARD Menu -> CableCARD CP Screen you will see the CCI byte setting there. You have to make sure to tune the tuner (really both tuners) to a channel that would have protection (i.e. not the analog or clear QAM channels) to expect to see anything other than 0x00 (copy freely). It sounds to me like in Phoniex they have set the byte to 0x02 (copy once), which is fine under the FCC regulations. In Las Vegas they have set it to 0x03 (copy never), which means the recording is deleted after 90 minutes. That's what they aren't allowed to do except for on demand and pay per view channels.

I'd be fine with a setting of 0x02. Not happy, but fine.
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Old 01-29-2007, 08:30 AM   #403
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Ahh so you can't check it for a recording other than the message.

Sure enough mine are at 0x02.

Great, How long until Cox Phoenix screws theirs up too. I'll hook up the Off-air with a quickness if 0x03 hits here.
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Old 01-29-2007, 10:20 AM   #404
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Visit #3 from Cox in Baton Rouge. The guy is still working on the situation, but the CableCard he brought only shows the Host, Data, and CableCard numbers as all 0's. I got TiVo tech support on the phone at the same time and let her speak to the Cox tech. They switched my working card to the top slot, and its info came up fine, so the slots aren't to blame. The Cox tech still can't believe that 4 cards in a row have failed, coming from three different technicians. He wants to reschedule for a fourth visit on Wed.

This is getting ridiculous. I'm not upset with TiVo, because I don't believe its their problem, but I'm getting to the point where I want to cancel my Cox service and send back my S3 (in my opinion, the S3 price isn't affordable if I only get 5 OTA channels to use it with).

I can do single tuner recording with my one working CableCard, but thats it! I might even be satisfied if I could record HD and subscription programming with one cablecard and analog cable service with the other tuner, but I don't think its possible to enable one digital tuner and one analog tuner, or am I wrong on that?
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Old 01-29-2007, 10:25 AM   #405
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beaubreeden
I can do single tuner recording with my one working CableCard, but thats it! I might even be satisfied if I could record HD and subscription programming with one cablecard and analog cable service with the other tuner, but I don't think its possible to enable one digital tuner and one analog tuner, or am I wrong on that?
No, you're not wrong. With only one cableCARD you get only one tuner. No recording of two shows.

And I would believe they had 4 bad cards. I think when cards don't work the techs just put them back in inventory. One of the cards I got had a bent connector. The guy was able to straighten it out, and it's worked fine since, but sometimes I think the cable companies don't keep track of bad cards so you can have a crappy experience, give up, and just get their DVR.
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Old 01-29-2007, 10:31 AM   #406
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Originally Posted by pkscout
I think when cards don't work the techs just put them back in inventory.(
I had the same opinion on Sat when that tech showed up. This tech at least seems to give a damn. The last one just said "oh well" and rescheduled the appointment. This tech is working so hard with his supervisor and their IT dept that he is in risk of being late to his next appointment.

I also felt bad for the first tech, who said that since the first card he brought for slot 2 didn't work, they would have to schedule a rework, and that would count negatively on his service record, even though it was clearly the cards problem and not something that he did wrong.

I requested that they bring about six CableCards with them so that MAYBE one will work, but their office will only dispatch enough cards to get the job done, in order to cut down on equipment loss and theft! That means one card per visit.

AAAARRRRGGGHHHH!
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Old 01-29-2007, 10:48 AM   #407
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beaubreeden
Visit #3 from Cox in Baton Rouge. The guy is still working on the situation, but the CableCard he brought only shows the Host, Data, and CableCard numbers as all 0's. I got TiVo tech support on the phone at the same time and let her speak to the Cox tech. They switched my working card to the top slot, and its info came up fine, so the slots aren't to blame. The Cox tech still can't believe that 4 cards in a row have failed, coming from three different technicians. He wants to reschedule for a fourth visit on Wed.

This is getting ridiculous. I'm not upset with TiVo, because I don't believe its their problem, but I'm getting to the point where I want to cancel my Cox service and send back my S3 (in my opinion, the S3 price isn't affordable if I only get 5 OTA channels to use it with).

I can do single tuner recording with my one working CableCard, but thats it! I might even be satisfied if I could record HD and subscription programming with one cablecard and analog cable service with the other tuner, but I don't think its possible to enable one digital tuner and one analog tuner, or am I wrong on that?
Having gone through a lot of problems installing my S3 with Cox myself requiring several repeat visists, I am of the belief that most of the cards referred to as "bad" probably are not. In most cases, I believe that cards are probably not being provisioned correctly by Cox as the techs have not been adequately trained to program the cards.

If Cox is believes the cards are provisioned and paired correctly, have them send a "cold hit" to the cards. Many of their techs think that they can just send a "refresh" to the cards like they do to their set to boxes, but it won't work.

This solved all my problems once this was figured out.
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Old 01-29-2007, 11:08 AM   #408
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ehardman
Having gone through a lot of problems installing my S3 with Cox myself requiring several repeat visists, I am of the belief that most of the cards referred to as "bad" probably are not. In most cases, I believe that cards are probably not being provisioned correctly by Cox as the techs have not been adequately trained to program the cards.
Yeah, I don't think the cards themselves are corrupt or broken. In past posts, I used the term "not initialized" rather than bad. At this point, I am just using "bad" to mean "it ain't happening..." LOL

With the cards reading all 0s, I just think the cards were received by Cox from Motorola, and then passed out to the techs. They were never setup properly for use in the local system. Is this a lack of training issue? Perhaps. Probably on two different levels, the techs who make sure the system is running at the head end, and the techs who do the installs. If they don't understand what they are looking at on the screen, then they aren't properly trained.

I also think that sending out another tech to solve the problem is ridiculous. If one cable tv tech who was sent to install cablecards can't figure the problem out, or at least know how to talk to someone at the office to get it working, then that person shouldn't have been sent out to begin with.
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Old 01-29-2007, 03:37 PM   #409
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pkscout
If you go to Messages & Settings -> Settings -> Remote, CableCARD, & Devices -> CableCARD Decoder -> select one of the cards -> CableCARD Menu -> CableCARD CP Screen you will see the CCI byte setting there. You have to make sure to tune the tuner (really both tuners) to a channel that would have protection (i.e. not the analog or clear QAM channels) to expect to see anything other than 0x00 (copy freely). It sounds to me like in Phoniex they have set the byte to 0x02 (copy once), which is fine under the FCC regulations. In Las Vegas they have set it to 0x03 (copy never), which means the recording is deleted after 90 minutes. That's what they aren't allowed to do except for on demand and pay per view channels.
More update. I called Cox again today, and the guy on the other end tried to be more helpful, but at the end of 30 minutes they still insist I am the only one with the problem and that the tech needs to come out to swap the cards. He did say he would forward my info to his supervisor and the head-end folks, but apparently the gods of the head-end won't speak to mere mortals like me. So now I have to wait 2 weeks for the next available appointment. Since I have to wait, I did find that the City of Henderson attorney's office handles complaints to the local franchise authority, so I have a call in to the attorney in charge of that.

If you are in the Las Vegas area, please call Cox if you are having this issue with your Series 3 and make sure to tell them your problem is that the CCI byte is set to copy never (0x03). If you happen to live in Henderson, you can go to the city's web site, click Contact Us, then scroll down for the number to the City Attorney's Office.
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Old 01-29-2007, 07:36 PM   #410
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Happy-ish Ending

Well, I got home and there was a message from the guy at Cox who I had talked to this morning. Lo and behold there had in fact been a problem at the head end. Apparently there had been a miscommunication from corporate. the VOD and PPV channels were suppose to be set to copy never (0x03), the premium channels (HBO, Showtime, etc) to copy once (0x02), and everything else left as copy freely (0x00). So either corporate told them something different or somebody on the head end only read the first part and set basically everything to 0x03.

So it is fixed now, and hopefully Cox will be more careful in the future.

Oh, and I was right.
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Old 01-29-2007, 07:42 PM   #411
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On my Comcast system the entire digital lineup is set to copy once. This kind of sucks since I am now trying to run my HDMI and composite outputs simultaneously and copy protection won;t allow it.

Perhaps I should call the cable company and complain. Anyone know if the digital tier should be set to copy once or copy freely?
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Old 01-29-2007, 09:23 PM   #412
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On my Comcast system the entire digital lineup is set to copy once. This kind of sucks since I am now trying to run my HDMI and composite outputs simultaneously and copy protection won;t allow it.

Perhaps I should call the cable company and complain. Anyone know if the digital tier should be set to copy once or copy freely?
My understanding given the research the last couple of days is that they can, if they want to, set everything except the broadcast networks to copy once. A few have done that, many have left it to copy freely. It is frustrating, but it is also within the FCC regulations.
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Old 01-29-2007, 10:01 PM   #413
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After 3 unsuccessful installation visits from Cox, and only 1 cablecard working, I ended up speaking to the regional tech support manager. He, and his top tech who has been successful at S3 installs, and three of his best techs will be coming to my house on Wed for the 4th and last visit to do the second cablecard install.

The idea is that the guy who knows what he is doing is going to show everyone how its done, and how to troubleshoot it. The manager is going to make sure it works. He is also refunding my installation fee of $54.

I already stated to him that he has until the end of Wed to get it done, or I'm pulling the plug on my whole install, and going to DirecTV. I got my SD-DVR80 fixed, so I'm very willing to do so.

I see light at the end of the tunnel.
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Old 01-30-2007, 04:36 PM   #414
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"Reserved" in Cablecard menu

I am in the PHX Cox area. I am having a problem with selecting stations from the program guide. I get a black screen with no audio/video until i press either Info or guide, then picture appears normally. If i direct tune a channel (not from the guide) all is normal. Happens on all stations both CATV and ATSC.
Talked to TIVO support several times, redid the setup, no help. Today they told me to go to the Cablecard setup menu's. They told me that there should not be any "Reserved" items listed ( i have three, the top 2 and the bottom 1 all say RESERVED).
I was told to call Cox and have them replace the cards. I am reluctant to buy this story on face value.. all channels are decoded correctly including premiums. They tell me i must go through this step before they'll consider swapping boxes.
Anyone else out there, could you check and see if you have RESERVED showing in any of the slots??
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Old 01-30-2007, 05:36 PM   #415
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzFrtDog
I am in the PHX Cox area. I am having a problem with selecting stations from the program guide. I get a black screen with no audio/video until i press either Info or guide, then picture appears normally. If i direct tune a channel (not from the guide) all is normal. Happens on all stations both CATV and ATSC.
Talked to TIVO support several times, redid the setup, no help. Today they told me to go to the Cablecard setup menu's. They told me that there should not be any "Reserved" items listed ( i have three, the top 2 and the bottom 1 all say RESERVED).
I was told to call Cox and have them replace the cards. I am reluctant to buy this story on face value.. all channels are decoded correctly including premiums. They tell me i must go through this step before they'll consider swapping boxes.
Anyone else out there, could you check and see if you have RESERVED showing in any of the slots??
I have RESERVED in those slots as well here in Las Vegas, and both mine work fine (especially once Cox fixed the head-end problem )
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Old 01-30-2007, 05:47 PM   #416
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I figured as much. I take it you don't have any problem selecting channels from the guide?
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Old 01-30-2007, 07:31 PM   #417
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzFrtDog
I figured as much. I take it you don't have any problem selecting channels from the guide?
AzFrtDog-
I'm using Cox Phoenix as well and don't have the problems you have. The only issue I've had in the 3 months of having the S3, certain channels were not appearing one 1 tuner. Called Cox and they came out the next day and replaced 1 card. That was about 2 weeks ago and all is fine.
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Old 01-30-2007, 09:56 PM   #418
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzFrtDog
I am in the PHX Cox area. I am having a problem with selecting stations from the program guide. I get a black screen with no audio/video until i press either Info or guide, then picture appears normally. If i direct tune a channel (not from the guide) all is normal.
Did you see the responses in the thread you started? Apparently it's an HDMI issue.
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Old 01-31-2007, 09:03 AM   #419
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Wow, forgot to check that. I see that a: I'm not alone with this and b: (surprise) Tech support is clueless. This has been going on for months and they have no record of the issue? For info, i am using HDMI with output at 1080i fixed.
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Old 02-03-2007, 04:47 PM   #420
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Fairfax, VA Cox. It only took two visits to get my S3 CableCards working. First visit the tech had 4 cards and none of them worked, he wasted over two hours of my time. Second visit, different tech, took him 30 minutes, and the cards have been working mostly fine for the past month.

I have three problems; one channel (NASA) has no audio, occasional audio dropouts, and occasional gray screen that clears by changing the channel.
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