TiVo Community
TiVo Community
TiVo Community
Go Back   TiVo Community > Main TiVo Forums > TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion
TiVo Community
Reply
Forum Jump
 
Thread Tools
Old 12-10-2013, 10:21 AM   #1
Raoul99
A/V Addict
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Central Mass.
Posts: 46
Purchase Own Cablecard?

I'm on Comcast in Central Mass. and I'm thinking about buying a couple of cablecards...

Those of you who have bought your own, have you had any troubles getting the cable company to pair them for you? Do they give you any grief,or do they insist that you have to use their cards?

Any info would be great...
Raoul99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 12:42 PM   #2
BigJimOutlaw
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 1,528
You definitely have to use their cablecards to receive their encrypted channels (which is most or all of them).

There are cablecards on ebay but the actual usable market for them is incredibly small. They won't activate a blank card. Some people have had some luck using those cards to receive unencypted local channels on some providers, but they will not activate and pair it for you.
BigJimOutlaw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 01:04 PM   #3
mr.unnatural
Registered User
 
mr.unnatural's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 3,555
I don't know of any provider that will allow you to activate a cablecard you're not renting from them. While the FCC has ruled that you can own your own equipment to receive TV channels from a digital cable provider, that right does not necesarily extend to the ownership of cablecards. Chances are, any cablecards you find on ebay were likely pulled from a cableco set top box or it was used in a cablecard device and never turned back in to the provider when the account was closed.
mr.unnatural is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 01:16 PM   #4
jrtroo
User
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 2,449
So, any free market cablecard is likely stolen property of some cable company.
__________________
TiVo Owner
jrtroo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 01:19 PM   #5
modnar
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Arkansas, USA
Posts: 1,848
Some cable companies will sell you their own CableCard. For example, my local cable provider will not rent you a card; you have to purchase it for $70.
modnar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 03:43 PM   #6
Raoul99
A/V Addict
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Central Mass.
Posts: 46
So...I'm guessin' it's not a great idea, huh?

Thanks for the info, guys...
Raoul99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 04:49 PM   #7
unitron
Registered User
 
unitron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: semi-coastal NC
Posts: 13,441
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raoul99 View Post
So...I'm guessin' it's not a great idea, huh?

Thanks for the info, guys...
In many cases, as I understand it, the card has to be the right brand to be compatible with that particular cable company's head end equipment.

That's the nice thing about standards, there are so many of them.
__________________
(thisismysigfile)


"I am altering the deal. Pray I don't alter it any further."

Darth TiVo, 14 February, 2011
unitron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 06:39 PM   #8
mr.unnatural
Registered User
 
mr.unnatural's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 3,555
Quote:
Originally Posted by modnar View Post
Some cable companies will sell you their own CableCard. For example, my local cable provider will not rent you a card; you have to purchase it for $70.
That's actually not a bad deal, depending on your provider. Considering that cablecos charge anywhere from about $2-10 per card, it would pay for itself in the long run. I'd be curious to know if they have a decent warranty on the cards.

Quote:
Originally Posted by unitron View Post
In many cases, as I understand it, the card has to be the right brand to be compatible with that particular cable company's head end equipment.

That's the nice thing about standards, there are so many of them.
AFAIK, cablecards are made only by Motorola or Scientific Atlanta. It's possible that they come in different flavors, and I suspect the cards are specific to the head end equipment as unitron stated. I would assume that the actual set top boxes are probably interchangeable, same as a Tivo or other cablecard device.
mr.unnatural is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 06:50 PM   #9
Dan203
Super Moderator
 
Dan203's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Nevada
Posts: 24,893
Quote:
Originally Posted by mr.unnatural View Post
That's actually not a bad deal, depending on your provider. Considering that cablecos charge anywhere from about $2-10 per card, it would pay for itself in the long run. I'd be curious to know if they have a decent warranty on the cards.
I agree. I wonder if you could get a warranty through Square Trade or something?
__________________
Dan Haddix
Super Moderator
Developer for VideoReDo
Dan203 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 06:59 PM   #10
mikeyts
Wireless Wiseguy
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Posts: 2,121
The purpose of a CableCARD is to decrypt the proprietary protection used by the cable company on their wire (Motorola's MediaCipher or Cisco's PowerKEY) and re-encrypt it with a standard protection scheme (DFAST) for output to the host device. The cards are specific to the brand of network they're being used on.

You could conceivably use any Cisco CableCARD on any Cisco cable system but the cable company could refuse to pair any CableCARD which isn't leased from them.
__________________
Mike Scott

"
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
" -- hookbill
mikeyts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 07:18 PM   #11
Dan203
Super Moderator
 
Dan203's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Nevada
Posts: 24,893
But as long as the brand is correct it will still download the channel map and allow TiVo to tune any clear QAM channels. That's mainly why people buy them on eBay. To trick their TiVos into working with clear QAM.

Unfortunately clear QAM is on it's way out. These days most systems only leave the locals unencrypted. And in some places they're even allowed to encrypt those if they meet certain conditions. (I think the system has to be 100% digital with no option to receive the locals as analog)
__________________
Dan Haddix
Super Moderator
Developer for VideoReDo
Dan203 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2013, 08:11 PM   #12
jgametest
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 117
Brighthouse CableCard

Polk County - Brighthouse Networks (tri-county) -- TampaBay

Cisco Cable Card $2.95 per month
tuning Adapter FREE

Mind you, if you acquire one from them and they forgot the TA you need to ask for it.. But they should remember to bring one.

Last edited by jgametest : 12-10-2013 at 08:17 PM.
jgametest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2013, 09:30 AM   #13
Raoul99
A/V Addict
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Central Mass.
Posts: 46
The vast majority of the ones I've seen on Ebay look the same (Motorola) as the ones that I have now. For $10~$15, I might give one a shot and see if Comcast will pair it...
Raoul99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2013, 10:05 AM   #14
lessd
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: CT
Posts: 5,962
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raoul99 View Post
The vast majority of the ones I've seen on Ebay look the same (Motorola) as the ones that I have now. For $10~$15, I might give one a shot and see if Comcast will pair it...
Save your money, as Comcast in CT will not pair any card that is not in their system.
__________________
Les Daniels

_____________________________________________
3 Roamio Plus upgraded to 2Tb & 3Tb, and 2 Minis, Also 1 not used Humax Series 2 with a DVD burner
lessd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2013, 11:51 AM   #15
jrtroo
User
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 2,449
Comcast gets their $ from their Digital Outlet fee, I get credits for my cablecards.
__________________
TiVo Owner
jrtroo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2013, 12:32 PM   #16
mr.unnatural
Registered User
 
mr.unnatural's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 3,555
Your best bet would be to contact your provider and ask them if you can use your own cablecard and, if so, what kind should you get. You'll probably have to speak with someone in tech support for the right answer because chances are most CSRs won't have a clue.
mr.unnatural is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2013, 01:08 PM   #17
Scyber
Former ReplayTV User
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by unitron View Post
In many cases, as I understand it, the card has to be the right brand to be compatible with that particular cable company's head end equipment.

That's the nice thing about standards, there are so many of them.
http://xkcd.com/927/
Scyber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2013, 02:57 PM   #18
Raoul99
A/V Addict
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Central Mass.
Posts: 46
Yeah...you guys are probably right...I'll probably just stick with what I have. I have 3 cablecards, all on the same outlet, so I really have nothing to complain about...
Raoul99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply
Forum Jump




Thread Tools


Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Advertisements

TiVo Community
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
vBulletin Skins by: Relivo Media

(C) 2013 Magenium Solutions - All Rights Reserved. No information may be posted elsewhere without written permission.
TiVoŽ is a registered trademark of TiVo Inc. This site is not owned or operated by TiVo Inc.
All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:00 PM.
OUR NETWORK: MyOpenRouter | TechLore | SansaCommunity | RoboCommunity | MediaSmart Home | Explore3DTV | Dijit Community | DVR Playground |