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Old 06-22-2013, 01:07 PM   #1
GoEagles
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HD Content on Comcast

Ok, so in Philly, Comcast has moved alot of the channel lineup around, before for instance, channel 301 might have been HBO and Channel 310 might have been HBO HD. If you have one of their boxes, there is a little menu that pops up and prompts you to watch in HD if you want.

Before I was under the assumption that this went to another channel, actually it doesn't, it just converts to a HD stream instead. This shocked me because I actually thought Comcast was just being crappy and didn't have all the channels in HD.

Is there any default way to Comcast to just broadcast HD channels, or am I stuck essentially not getting all my HD premium channels because the TiVo box is unable to switch each channel from SD to HD.
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Old 06-22-2013, 03:48 PM   #2
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Upconvert to HD? That isn't happening. You were right the first time that the comcrap box is just using a different channel. If you don't want SD versions of channels on your TiVo, then just delete them. That's what I do.
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Old 06-22-2013, 05:12 PM   #3
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Ok, so in Philly, Comcast has moved alot of the channel lineup around, before for instance, channel 301 might have been HBO and Channel 310 might have been HBO HD. If you have one of their boxes, there is a little menu that pops up and prompts you to watch in HD if you want.

Before I was under the assumption that this went to another channel, actually it doesn't, it just converts to a HD stream instead. This shocked me because I actually thought Comcast was just being crappy and didn't have all the channels in HD.

Is there any default way to Comcast to just broadcast HD channels, or am I stuck essentially not getting all my HD premium channels because the TiVo box is unable to switch each channel from SD to HD.
That icon only appears on Motorola boxes currently, Cisco/Scientific Atlanta boxes haven't gotten that far yet in their software version. Anyway you'll get all the HD versions of the channels available in your area if you are paying the HD technology fee (depending on the package you have it might be included at no additional charge. Contact your service provider for more information.) For example I get all the Philly HD channels in the 900 range and all the New York HD channels in the 800 range, but all the standard def channels are still in the single and double digit range. This is the same in both Comcast owned set top boxes and third party set top boxes such as the TiVo or Silicon Dust. Yes it goes to another channel, no it doesn't upconvert. HBO East HD for me is channel 300, HBO East standard def is channel 301. Same for Showtime East HD being 339 while the SD counterpart is channel 340, and Stars HD being channel 369 while the SD counterpart is channel 370.

There are other cable providers who have their cable boxes set to automatically tune to the HD counterpart automatically. For example up by relative's in the northeast if I put their set top box to channel 2 WCBSHD appears on screen automatically, however WCBS itself is still transmitted in standard definition on channel 2 on any other television. It's all dependent on how the service provider maps the channels.
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Old 06-23-2013, 09:12 AM   #4
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Just to add to this, Comcast has removed nearly all the HD feeds for premium channels in Philadelphia. It's usually just the main channel plus 1 or 2 extras. What HD feeds that still remain are available on TiVo, you just have to enable them in your channel list, and disable the SD channels if you want.

Their argument is that you can use On Demand to view most of that content that would have aired on the extra premium feeds. I guess that makes sense, and now that TiVo can access On Demand in many areas, I have less of an issue with their removal.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:08 AM   #5
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Except that the Comcast VOD rollout to Tivos is beyond slow, it's snail-like. We're over a year since the first city and there's still a ton of areas that don't have it.
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Old 06-24-2013, 02:23 AM   #6
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Just to add to this, Comcast has removed nearly all the HD feeds for premium channels in Philadelphia. It's usually just the main channel plus 1 or 2 extras. What HD feeds that still remain are available on TiVo, you just have to enable them in your channel list, and disable the SD channels if you want.

Their argument is that you can use On Demand to view most of that content that would have aired on the extra premium feeds. I guess that makes sense, and now that TiVo can access On Demand in many areas, I have less of an issue with their removal.
I agree. My biggest concern is the entire bandwidth issue that providers face. If there are so many channels in their lineups, eventually providers will have to look at ways of getting it back such as the dreaded switched digital video or some other horrible solution. Maybe with what Comcast is doing, it's preserving the bandwidth so those solutions wouldn't be necessary?
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Old 07-03-2013, 06:38 PM   #7
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I agree. My biggest concern is the entire bandwidth issue that providers face. If there are so many channels in their lineups, eventually providers will have to look at ways of getting it back such as the dreaded switched digital video or some other horrible solution. Maybe with what Comcast is doing, it's preserving the bandwidth so those solutions wouldn't be necessary?
The bandwidth issues are basically BS because they don't want to upgrade their systems. If they were running 1ghz plants with all MPEG-4 on the HD side, they could add every HD channel in the US that they could get a license for, and still have extra bandwidth. They are just too cheap to upgrade.

I was talking to the guy who came to diagnose an internet problem, and he said that our 650mhz plant isn't being upgraded, because the coax is so old it's only good up to about 750, and it would require a complete rebuild. A neighboring system got the total rebuild, but they don't want to do it here. Which is even weirder, since we have an overbuilder that I *think* has an 860mhz system (they have a very similar HD lineup plus analog) that is going to have a metric boatload of capacity free when they finally go all-digital.

Comcast has done a good job managing the available bandwidth (although they do put too much towards VOD, IMHO), but they really need to make more bandwidth, not just keep trying to manage what they have. With DOCSIS 3.1, we're going to see 1.2ghz plants, and Comcast here will probably still be at 650. Maybe we'll get lucky and they'll put 860mhz electronics on it and push the coax into the 750's...
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Old 07-04-2013, 06:01 PM   #8
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First I have noticed that the other HBO channels that are sd have different movies then the HD channel one.
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Old 07-05-2013, 08:22 AM   #9
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The bandwidth issues are basically BS because they don't want to upgrade their systems. If they were running 1ghz plants with all MPEG-4 on the HD side, they could add every HD channel in the US that they could get a license for, and still have extra bandwidth. They are just too cheap to upgrade.

I was talking to the guy who came to diagnose an internet problem, and he said that our 650mhz plant isn't being upgraded, because the coax is so old it's only good up to about 750, and it would require a complete rebuild. A neighboring system got the total rebuild, but they don't want to do it here. Which is even weirder, since we have an overbuilder that I *think* has an 860mhz system (they have a very similar HD lineup plus analog) that is going to have a metric boatload of capacity free when they finally go all-digital.

Comcast has done a good job managing the available bandwidth (although they do put too much towards VOD, IMHO), but they really need to make more bandwidth, not just keep trying to manage what they have. With DOCSIS 3.1, we're going to see 1.2ghz plants, and Comcast here will probably still be at 650. Maybe we'll get lucky and they'll put 860mhz electronics on it and push the coax into the 750's...
I think my area is an 860MHz plant, how would I be able to tell?

I really don't know what's going to happen with DOCSIS 3.1 because as far as I can tell there aren't any consumer graded modems available and there are still areas of the country that are on DOCSIS 1.1 and DOCSIS 2.0 and people (both customer and MSO) are reluctant to upgrade equipment "if it's still working"

I'd need to be concerned regarding the general mechanical hardware in use being able to support those 1.2GHz signals, and let's not forget that that's starting to encroach on MoCA territory which ranges from 1150MHz to 1650MHz.
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Old 07-05-2013, 07:24 PM   #10
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I think my area is an 860MHz plant, how would I be able to tell?

I really don't know what's going to happen with DOCSIS 3.1 because as far as I can tell there aren't any consumer graded modems available and there are still areas of the country that are on DOCSIS 1.1 and DOCSIS 2.0 and people (both customer and MSO) are reluctant to upgrade equipment "if it's still working"

I'd need to be concerned regarding the general mechanical hardware in use being able to support those 1.2GHz signals, and let's not forget that that's starting to encroach on MoCA territory which ranges from 1150MHz to 1650MHz.
Maybe filings with your DPUC. If you have more than about 100 HD's, you're somewhere in the 700-860 range, as the 650 systems won't suppor that many. We're missing Al Jazeera America and ESPNU HD, even though we have a ton of garbage channels as it is.

DOCSIS 3.1 uses OFDMA, so it's a totally separate system, and they would have to continue to run D2/D3 channels alongside the D3.1 channels. My thought is that the D3.1 channels would run way up high, while the D2/D3 ones stay a bit lower.

They would have to totally rebuild the plant to support 1.2ghz, as the amps, nodes, etc, most likely can't go up there. Not sure about splitters and taps, I know on the consumer side most of them go up to 2-3ghz, but not all (since they can also be used with newer DISH and DirecTV systems).

I think MoCA is smart enough to know what channels are in use, as IIRC, it can dip below 1ghz, which a few cable systems are currently going up to.
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:17 AM   #11
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I have about 120 HD channels give or take a few HD Spanish language channels.
Comcast from what I've seen from various installs across the country, uses PPC PPF81GND1SS ground block/demarcation points http://www.ppc-online.com/cedia/group.php?id=19 which are rated from 5MHz to 3GHz, however the problem is is that alot of the splitters in residential dwellings that Comcast has installed are only rated to 1002MHz. Comcast seems to be partial towards Antronix CMC2000H and Broadband Extreme BDS10xH series. I can't forget to mention that current generation set top boxes, including TiVo Premiere's only have a tuner that goes up to 1GHz which means that any channels above that won't be accessible. This exact same problem occurred on Series 3 models with certain service providers like Cox when they started expanding from 860MHz to 1GHz with the Cox Plus package, until a work around was created.

On my Actiontec adapters, router, and TiVo the only options available are in the D frequency band from 1150MHz to 1500MHz since they were purposely designed to disallow the ability to choose a frequency in those other bands by accident which would create performance problems with a subscribers service and resulting in a service visit. Now the Entropic EN2510 ECA chipset that the Actiontec, Netgear, D-Link, Wi3, and Channel Master adapters use are capable of using those other bands, but I've noticed that the utility that comes with them in order to adjust their settings and check their stats seems to prevent those channels from being selectable in the drop down box, with the exception of the Netgear and D-Link utility, but has a disclaimer that if those frequencies are chosen that it could impact service.
In short, I'm just pointing out that I'm uncertain that MoCA is smart enough to avoid those D band channels that are in use by something other than another MoCA network. I mean yes there is an automatic scanning function, but it's only limited to the D band and if that band is being encroached upon by a service provider instead of another MoCA network, it's possible it wouldn't see that (like it not speaking the MoCA language) and use those frequencies which as I said earlier could cause performance problems in both the MoCA network as well as the subscription services.
http://www.broadbandreports.com/r0/d...CA_Diagram.JPG http://www.mocaisinyourhouse.com/FAQ...px?ID=51934&Q=
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:39 AM   #12
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I seem to think MoCA is smart enough to tell, but maybe I'm wrong.

At 120 HD's that's at least a 750 system, if not an 860 system. We're maxed out here at around 70HD's on a 650 system. I'm hoping the other cable company upgrades their system, kills analog, and lights a nice big fire under Comcast's @$$.

Those splitters are probably fine at 1.2ghz, they just don't test them above that. The tuner issue is true, but a 1.2ghz plant would only have D3.1 above 1000mhz, and likely no linear content at all above 860mhz. D3.1 can do something like 12mbps per mhz, about double what we have now, so to get into a 2gbps range, where they could actually offer gbps service, they would need 200+mhz of downstream.
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:55 AM   #13
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Honestly, on the east coast, when Verizon started pushing their Quantum speed tiers about a year ago or so, Comcast quickly started pushing out higher speed tiers and upgraded their customers (for free I might add) to higher speed tiers http://comcast.com/About/PressReleas...CRedirect=true so it's quite possible that direct competition from their immediate competitors with improving infrastructure and offering higher services will benefit you hopefully. Just sometimes it sucks when they are the monopoly and there is no other competitor.
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Old 07-06-2013, 10:12 AM   #14
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What am I missing? Is the HD quilting channel that great?
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:45 PM   #15
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What am I missing? Is the HD quilting channel that great?
Well if that was a real channel, I'd imagine so since you would be able to see the thread count of the fabrics used and more importantly the stitching techniques the hosts are utilizing so the viewer can follow along more easily.
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Old 07-07-2013, 09:54 AM   #16
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Honestly, on the east coast, when Verizon started pushing their Quantum speed tiers about a year ago or so, Comcast quickly started pushing out higher speed tiers and upgraded their customers (for free I might add) to higher speed tiers http://comcast.com/About/PressReleas...CRedirect=true so it's quite possible that direct competition from their immediate competitors with improving infrastructure and offering higher services will benefit you hopefully. Just sometimes it sucks when they are the monopoly and there is no other competitor.
True, and it did help those of us without FIOS competition, as they did all the systems. Now I'm rocking 50mbps internet.

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What am I missing? Is the HD quilting channel that great?
On our 650mhz system, the two biggest we're missing are ESPNU HD (we have the SD version), and Al Jazeera America (ex Current TV) (almost no providers have Al Jazeera English, which is available on FTA satellite). Those two channels are available on systems with more bandwidth. The aggravating part is that we have HD versions of all kinds of garbage channels. I know they have to bundle in a ton of junk channels, but they could just push the SD's and then save the bandwidth for good HD channels and more SD channels. It also is really annoying that so little carriage of Al Jazeera is available in the US, and limited BBC coverage is available as well. We get CNN, but not the other two global news networks.
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Old 07-07-2013, 06:46 PM   #17
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True, and it did help those of us without FIOS competition, as they did all the systems. Now I'm rocking 50mbps internet.
Same here and it's amazing.
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