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Old 08-14-2007, 12:50 PM   #3241
cwbear
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Tivo HD with an M-Card were installed Saturday. It was the first M-Card the two guys had done. It took a total of 20 min, and seemed to be a complete success... Then I noticed that 727 UHD is not working on either tuner after they had left. This is the only channel that does not work. I mostly get a grey screen and sometimes a "this channel is not availible".

I called Comcast and they did the Init, Hit, Refresh thing, to no avail.
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Old 08-14-2007, 02:03 PM   #3242
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwbear
Tivo HD with an M-Card were installed Saturday. It was the first M-Card the two guys had done. It took a total of 20 min, and seemed to be a complete success... Then I noticed that 727 UHD is not working on either tuner after they had left. This is the only channel that does not work. I mostly get a grey screen and sometimes a "this channel is not availible".

I called Comcast and they did the Init, Hit, Refresh thing, to no avail.
It took my person 4 different attempts to get HDNet up for me, not sure what finally set it right.
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Old 08-14-2007, 02:36 PM   #3243
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kido
I called Comcast and told the CSR to go to http://www.comcast.com and do a search on "cablecards how much". The results show the following page:

http://www.comcast.com/customers/faq...s.ashx?ID=2651
Thank you kindly - I look forward to my upcoming battle - $5 a month is still $60 a year - definitely worth the effort.
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Old 08-14-2007, 02:47 PM   #3244
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Originally Posted by jfh3
That is incorrect.

Make sure you have the "S3 Tivo package" on your account and the second card will be $1.50, not $6.95 or whatever the digital outlet fee is.

Even better, get an MCard and have no additional fee.
They had me down for the $1.50 and I only had the one M-card and they took the fee off
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Old 08-14-2007, 04:58 PM   #3245
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I thought I should bump this for the people who are getting an additional outlet fee:
Quote:
Originally Posted by TerpBE
I finally found someone at Comcast who agreed that S3 customers should NOT be billed for a second outlet if they have a single Tivo with two CableCARDS. She finally straightened things out, removed the additional outlet fee, and got all channels working on both tuners.

I asked her if I could pass on any advice to the other people having this problem, and she said that I could pass on her information to other people having the same problem.

If you are going to contact, her:

1. Be nice. She was very nice and helpful, so return the courtesy.

2. If you have a problem other than the "additional outlet" charge, don't call her about it. She's willing to help us on this issue, so don't burden her with other Comcast problems. If you have others, call the "executive assistant" number listed (on the Comcast cablecard thread).

3. Only call if you are being billed for an additional outlet charge when you only have one box, or 2+ additional outlet charges if you have two boxes, etc. If you have "N" boxes, you should be billed for "N-1" additional outlets.

Her name is Cheryl Williams and her number is 215-638-6582. Again, be nice, and try not to overload her.
Here's how much you SHOULD be billed:
N = number of "boxes" you have (cable box or Tivo)
C = number of Cablecards you have (usually 2 per Tivo)

What you should be paying is:

(N - 1) * additional outlet charge
plus
(C - 1) * dual-cablecard charge

(additional outlet charge is about $8, dual-cablecard charge is about $1.50)

So if you have one dual-cablecard Tivo and no cable box, you should pay $1.50. If you have a cable box AND a dual-cablecard Tivo, you should pay about $9.50.

If you're paying more than this and can't get it straightened out with the regular Comcast CSRs, call the contact in my quoted post above.
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Old 08-14-2007, 05:03 PM   #3246
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TerpBE
I thought I should bump this for the people who are getting an additional outlet fee:

Here's how much you SHOULD be billed:
N = number of "boxes" you have (cable box or Tivo)
C = number of Cablecards you have (usually 2 per Tivo)

What you should be paying is:

(N - 1) * additional outlet charge
plus
(C - 1) * dual-cablecard charge

(additional outlet charge is about $8, dual-cablecard charge is about $1.50)

So if you have one dual-cablecard Tivo and no cable box, you should pay $1.50. If you have a cable box AND a dual-cablecard Tivo, you should pay about $9.50.

If you're paying more than this and can't get it straightened out with the regular Comcast CSRs, call the contact in my quoted post above.
I don't think that's right. Each outlet charge includes one cable card. So, if you have four outlets with one cable card each, you pay three outlet charges and zero cable card charges.

The fees are :
N = number of cablecard outlets you have
B = number of cable boxes you have
C = number of cablecards you have
((N+B-1) * outlet-charge) + (int(C/N) -1) * dual-cablecard charge)
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Old 08-14-2007, 05:03 PM   #3247
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Big Grin

Quote:
Originally Posted by TerpBE
I thought I should bump this for the people who are getting an additional outlet fee:

Here's how much you SHOULD be billed:
N = number of "boxes" you have (cable box or Tivo)
C = number of Cablecards you have (usually 2 per Tivo)

What you should be paying is:

(N - 1) * additional outlet charge
plus
(C - 1) * dual-cablecard charge

(additional outlet charge is about $8, dual-cablecard charge is about $1.50)

So if you have one dual-cablecard Tivo and no cable box, you should pay $1.50. If you have a cable box AND a dual-cablecard Tivo, you should pay about $9.50.

If you're paying more than this and can't get it straightened out with the regular Comcast CSRs, call the contact in my quoted post above.
True dat...just called and I am being charged $1.50 since they installed one M-Card in my Tivo HD. There is much confusion when you call but they figure it out eventually
Tivo HD rocks
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Old 08-14-2007, 05:14 PM   #3248
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robtech
True dat...just called and I am being charged $1.50 since they installed one M-Card in my Tivo HD. There is much confusion when you call but they figure it out eventually
Tivo HD rocks
Here's what the site says...so wouldn't one muticard be free??
How much will I be charged to use a CableCARD?

There is no charge for the first CableCARD that you use as it is already included in the primary outlet fee. If you have a multi-card device on the same outlet (i.e. TiVo Series 3 or two Digital Cable Tuners connected to the same personal computer), you will be charged an additional regulated fee of up to $1.91 for the second CableCARD.

If additional CableCARDs are needed for other devices that are installed on additional outlets, you will not be charged for the first CableCARD installed on this outlet as the cost is included in the additional outlet fee. In addition to the cost of the digital cable service, you will not be charged a regulated fee of up to $1.91 for the second CableCARD on the additional outlet.

**Note: The same pricing schedule will be applicable to additional outlets with multi-CableCARD devices, e.g. no charge for first CableCARD on the third outlet and an additional regulated fee of up to $1.91 for the second CableCARD in addition to the digital service charge.
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Old 08-14-2007, 05:29 PM   #3249
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aindik
I don't think that's right. Each outlet charge includes one cable card. So, if you have four outlets with one cable card each, you pay three outlet charges and zero cable card charges.

The fees are :
N = number of cablecard outlets you have
B = number of cable boxes you have
C = number of cablecards you have
((N+B-1) * outlet-charge) + (int(C/N) -1) * dual-cablecard charge)
Wouldn't it be
((N+B-1) * outlet-charge) + (C - N) * dual-cablecard charge)
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Old 08-14-2007, 06:02 PM   #3250
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Well, here is additional info from Cheryl after I asked a few (polite) questions...
HDTV fee
1. The $6.95 monthly "HDTV" fee is an EQUIPMENT fee,
2. We agreed there is no such thing as an "HD" cable card, so thus
they should not charge the "HDTV" fee for cable cards.

They are aware at corporate of the problems with 'required' additional charges in many of their systems in order to get the 'second' cards on each outlet to work. They are working with each system as the issues come up to resolve it, and it was due to problems between the authorization system and the billing system (imagine how many lines of code there, friends). She said that the supervisors are authorized to put credits on your account to offset the 'bogus' charges while the kinks are worked out of the system.
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Old 08-14-2007, 06:09 PM   #3251
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfhub
Wouldn't it be
((N+B-1) * outlet-charge) + (C - N) * dual-cablecard charge)
Yeah, that would be better.
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Old 08-14-2007, 09:55 PM   #3252
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfhub
Wouldn't it be
((N+B-1) * outlet-charge) + (C - N) * dual-cablecard charge)

Shouldn't we at least integrate it from 0 to 1? At least I can put my calculus to use for something
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Old 08-14-2007, 10:43 PM   #3253
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drcos
They are aware at corporate of the problems with 'required' additional charges in many of their systems in order to get the 'second' cards on each outlet to work. They are working with each system as the issues come up to resolve it, and it was due to problems between the authorization system and the billing system (imagine how many lines of code there, friends). She said that the supervisors are authorized to put credits on your account to offset the 'bogus' charges while the kinks are worked out of the system.
That would explain that. A friend with an HD has the dual TiVo charge ($1.79), an additional outlet free ($6.99) and an equipment credit (-$6.99).

When I had the extra box my S3 would stop working if they removed the A/O fee.
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Old 08-15-2007, 03:57 AM   #3254
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Comcast Exporer8000hd vs Tivo3

My stupid comcast box drags when I am watching record HD programming. Is that a function of some kind of processor speed? ANybody else having that issue? Also, if I fork out the cash for tivo series 3, is there any indication that this will be resolved?

Thanks
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Old 08-15-2007, 06:15 PM   #3255
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Alright, so here's the rest of my story:

Tech arrives at my place at 9:45a on Tuesday morning. (Fifteen minutes ahead of the low end of schedule. Sweet.) Has never seen a Tivo HD before, but was fine when I told him it was just a new flavor of S3. Good guy, has done S3 installs before, gets to work. Takes him about an hour and a half and several phone calls to get a second CableCard working in my box, after concluding that the first one he tried wasn't gonna do it and moving on to another one. (He wisely brought three.) To his credit, when he leaves, he leaves behind his business card, points to his direct cell number, and tells me to feel free to call if I have any trouble with the cards down the road. Nice.

So the nutshell: SIX CableCards to find two that worked. I am convinced that four of those cards were not bad, but that Comcast's infrastructure is insufficient to work with the cards the way it should.

So in doing these phone calls I hear them talking about reconfiguring my account, and "Kyle" tells me that something was set wrong on their side. Which means that four seperate people have now looked at this account and not configured things properly. So he leaves, and I rerun through Guided Setup and I'm off and rolling, and it occurs to me that maybe the stuff they did caused that additional outlet charge to show up on my account again. I decide to wait an hour or so to let the hubbub over my account die down, and call back and go over my billing with a CSR so I know exactly what I'm being charged.

And of course, the extra-outlet fee is back. I tell him, no, you're not supposed to charge me that, and here is why. Puts me on hold, comes back, and starts with some rigamarole about "physical" outlets vs. "virtual" ones. Not having it. Puts me on hold again. Comes back, tries it again. I ask for a supervisor. He tells me he'll have one call me back, I say, no, find one NOW. "They're in a meeting." "I'll wait." Having a cordless phone with built-in speakerphone is a good thing.

I wait a while. Finally a supervisor gets on the line. Get his name, confirm proper spelling, he starts feeding me the rigmarole. I point him to the FAQ on their site that explains that I get a box for free so I can On Demand. He tells me he needs to look into this and can he call me back within 20 minutes? I informed him that I didn't trust him to do so, so he gave me his direct line. Fine, I needed to fix some lunch anyhow.

He calls back and sticks to his guns, and also points out on the FAQ in question that there is an asterisk on the end of that particular question, and that that's why they can charge me. I tell him that since the page is truncated and whatever footnote that is isn't showing up, how can he know that? He doesn't have an answer, but he's not budging.

So I figure we're at letter-writing time, and I tell him this. He makes the mistake of asking if there is ANYTHING he can do to make this situation right, which is a really stupid thing to say since the obvious answer is "Yes. Take this incorrect charge off like I'm asking you to." He realizes his error and still tells me he can't. (I should have told him to take off the charge for the truck roll for Kyle coming out.) "Fine," I say. "That FAQ page is truncated. I want you to find me that entire document and email it to me, so I can read that footnote myself and see if it means what you claim it means. Further, I'll be calling you every day until you do so." He promises that he'll try, and we hang up.

That was a two-hour phone call, all told.

Hour later, he calls me back, and tells me that he wasn't able to get the document for me, but was able to fix my account so that the cable box is the primary outlet and therefore I'm not being charged for the additional outlet. Which was all I wanted in the first damn place.

Final nutshell: I have a working TivoHD with two CableCards, and the billing on my account is allegedly what I told them it should be. We'll see what happens when the bill comes. But MY GAWD what a COMPLETELY unnecessary headache it was to make that all happen. I might write that letter anyhow just so they know what a sour taste Comcast left in my mouth.

Last edited by clemon79 : 08-15-2007 at 06:26 PM.
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Old 08-15-2007, 06:27 PM   #3256
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blmelton
My stupid comcast box drags when I am watching record HD programming. Is that a function of some kind of processor speed? ANybody else having that issue? Also, if I fork out the cash for tivo series 3, is there any indication that this will be resolved?
It's a function of the Comcast DVR hardware blowing dog. Since the S3 uses entirely different (and dedicated) hardware, yeah, that should resolve the issue.
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Old 08-15-2007, 06:45 PM   #3257
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Oh, one more thing. When I called Tivo to get my no-longer-in-the-mix S2 turned off, I got an AOL-esque hard-sell to keep it going. After all of the great experiences I've read about here with Tivo support, that surprised me a little. It got to the point where I had to interrupt her next sales pitch with a firm "NO. TURN IT OFF." to get her to do it.

(They also don't prorate, which means I'm out the seven bucks they just charged me for said box. (Yes, I could have hooked it up somewhere else and used it for the month. I didn't want to, mainly because I didn't want to have to worry about remembering to call to cancel it.) Not thrilled about that, but I'm sure it's buried somewhere in their TOS.)
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Old 08-16-2007, 05:49 AM   #3258
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I had the same experience. It's a pretty typical approach used by companies trying to retain customers. Nothing surprising.
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Old 08-17-2007, 05:21 AM   #3259
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Just thought I'd post a very positive story.

San Jose California. Called Comcast, told them I needed CableCards. They asked if they were for TiVo; I said YES. Told them I had two TiVos. They said no problem; quoted the proper price; and scheduled a truck roll.

Very polite Comcast employee shows up in the middle of the service window. Has done Tivos before; had not yet seen the HD. He tweaked my splitters for a while, then did the CableCards. He had brought M-Cards, but had S-Cards as a backup. (Lucky that I had HDs instead of S3s). He warned me that when he called in to pair the cards it might take a while, as he might have to "fish" for someone at the office that knew what they were doing.

But it didn't. Pop in the M-card; get the numbers; call the office; wait 3 minutes; done - working. Repeat on the other unit.

The only scary time in the install was that, on both TiVos, the screen suddenly went black during the pairing process, requiring pressing the TiVo button and navigating back down into the CC menus. This didn't inspire confidence, but it was fine. We never got any 161 errors or anything.

The installer was very impressed with the HD, especially the CC slots being on the FRONT of the unit. He asked info about price and where I bought it, and said he'd start recommending it to people (which he never did with the S3).

He said someone from TiVo had been to visit the local Comcast folks several weeks BEFORE the TiVo HD announcement to tell them about it, which had impressed him too.

SO, I have nothing but praise for the Cablecard experience with Comcast in San Jose.

The HD units, on the other hand, are both exhibiting the macroblock problem. It happens even on the Tivo menus, so it has to be a problem in the Tivo, not a Comcast issue. I'm looking forward to the service update, which hopefully will fix this.

All in all, a pretty good day. We'll see what the bill looks like.

...Sam
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Old 08-17-2007, 01:11 PM   #3260
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sammydee
He asked info about price and where I bought it, and said he'd start recommending it to people (which he never did with the S3).
Wonder if that is good for his job security
Quote:
Originally Posted by sammydee
He said someone from TiVo had been to visit the local Comcast folks several weeks BEFORE the TiVo HD announcement to tell them about it, which had impressed him too.
Not that the TiVo folks had to travel that far. TiVo HQ is in Alviso, which is part of the city of San Jose.
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Old 08-18-2007, 12:04 AM   #3261
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Box: TiVo HD
Card: Motorola M
Install: Self

I realize some of this is redundant but if it saves one person some time and frustration then it’s worth my time posting and anyone who might benefit reading about my experiences.

Bought a new HD TV and was missing TiVo – big time.

Bought TiVo HD online from Circuit City using a link which gave me 10% off (ends 8/31). The 10% discount, even with sales tax, made the price about the same as it would have been from out of state vendors at the time. Decided to buy local in case I got involved with a return. Picked up the box and swung by my local Comcast store.

Went to the Comcast store on North 94th Street just east of Aurora. Asked for two cards and was surprised when I was given two “M” cards. I like to live dangerously so I took only one card. Staff at the store very cooperative. No hassles. Walked out with a card and a receipt showing 0.00 charges.

Setup was a breeze. Called Comcast to pair card and it was done while I was talking to service rep.

All channels came through. HOWEVER pixilation was horrible. Looked like an explosion at a checkerboard factory. Thanks to all the helpful posts in this thread I suspected the problem related to the version 8.1.7a software. Went to bed and let TiVo rest until next day. Hoped version “b” would come through.

Next day still a mass of pixels. Still version “a.” Left town overnight and hoped software update would come through.

Got home, pixel mess was gone! Checked and software had been updated to 8.1.7b2!!

However I’d lost most of my cable channels. Just local broadcast (standard and HD) and a few cable channels. Suspected might be a parity problem. Called Comcast and asked service rep to pair card again. She did while I waited. That did the trick!

Checked my Comcast account online. I was being billed for two cards. Called and billing rep said “That’s because you have a TiVo and you’re using three cards. One for your TV and two for TiVo.” Explained none for TV and one for TiVo. She said “But TiVo boxes require two.” Explained M card situation – which she didn’t understand. She put me on hold while she contacted her “support director.” She quickly came back and told me the card fees were removed and wouldn’t show up on my monthly bill.

So far so good. Pixilation is gone. Got one small flash – no different from my S2 boxes.

Summary:

Anticipate pixilation problem with ver. a software.

Anticipate pixilation correction with ver. b2.

Expect software update about 48 hours after activating TiVo.

Double check cable card paring if all channels don’t light up.

Triple or quadruple check your Comcast account for mystery card charges.

Last edited by Julio Blassie : 08-19-2007 at 01:32 AM.
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Old 08-18-2007, 01:45 AM   #3262
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Arrow Can anyone help!

Not sure if this is possible but would appreciate the OP or someone to put the current status always at the beginning of the thread, keeping it updated and current. It would be much appreciated. We are over 100 pages and it just takes too long to sift through the whole thread.
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Old 08-18-2007, 01:52 AM   #3263
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M Card not compatible with VOD?

Got a call from the local Comcast office. They were hoping that they would be done testing the M card before my Monday install. Alas that is not the case. I'm getting two S cards on Monday and they will do a swap when they have the M card working. No extra fee for the second S card which is nice. The thing that blew me away was he said that, after their testing, VOD would not be compatible with the M card. This is directly opposite of what is sited on the Cablelabs site. This is the guy who is in charge of the whole rollout for the Maryland area so I don't doubt what he is saying I'm just very surprised. Anyone her something different from a trusted source?
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Old 08-18-2007, 02:49 AM   #3264
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbaps
Got a call from the local Comcast office. They were hoping that they would be done testing the M card before my Monday install. Alas that is not the case. I'm getting two S cards on Monday and they will do a swap when they have the M card working. No extra fee for the second S card which is nice. The thing that blew me away was he said that, after their testing, VOD would not be compatible with the M card. This is directly opposite of what is sited on the Cablelabs site. This is the guy who is in charge of the whole rollout for the Maryland area so I don't doubt what he is saying I'm just very surprised. Anyone her something different from a trusted source?
It's never been said that the M card has anything to do with VOD or PPV functionality.

That two-way communication capability is part of the host device interface that the CableCARD plugs in to. Even the S-card could support two-way communication with a two-way host device. The problem is that there's no standard defining how to present and to request the VOD and PPV options. Even with a two-way host device, VOD or PPV couldn't be provided by a third party... well, except that a third party could potentially support each individual cable system that provided details of how to interact with their head-end servers. And that's just not really practical.
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Old 08-18-2007, 04:36 AM   #3265
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sammydee
SO, I have nothing but praise for the Cablecard experience with Comcast in San Jose.

The HD units, on the other hand, are both exhibiting the macroblock problem. It happens even on the Tivo menus, so it has to be a problem in the Tivo, not a Comcast issue. I'm looking forward to the service update, which hopefully will fix this.
B2 seems to have completely resolved the macroblock issues I had in HD playback and on the TiVo menus. Saw them every 10-15 seconds yesterday; didn't see any in 2+ hours tonight. Super!
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Old 08-18-2007, 11:12 AM   #3266
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Same here. B2 update has dramatically improved things on my unit with 2 comcast/motorola cable cards. No macroblocking in several hours of viewing. Great to see TiVo getting the problem improved.

N.B. this latest fix won't of course repair material recorded prior to the update.
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Old 08-18-2007, 11:34 AM   #3267
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Hats off to those pioneers who have patiently worked through all these issues with Comcast. For me, though, the thought of expending all that energy and the stress of dealing with clueless people is too much to contemplate. My question: When, if ever, will it be safe to just order the service and expect accurate pricing and a trouble-free installation? Or will I be better off to wait for the Comcast Tivo software for my existing Motorola DVRs? I am in the Boston area.
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Old 08-18-2007, 01:38 PM   #3268
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Lost Power, Lost Channels???

Comcast tech was here this morning to install 2 cablecards into our new HD Tivo. It worked fine when he was here, but he left a few cables loose and so the Tivo power cord came out after he left. I plugged it back in, but now we don't get most channels. It seems pretty random which ones we get - we get some HD, some standard. I've reset the box, gone through guided setup a few times and no change. I have noticed that Tivo has connected to the internet several times - not sure why.

Any ideas? Any help is appreciated!

Jesse in NH
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Old 08-18-2007, 06:56 PM   #3269
MokeUSA
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I finally decided to dump the Comcast DVR and go back to Tivo with their introduction of the HD. Stopped by the local Comcast office and picked up 2 cablecards. I asked if they had M-cards but she said they didn't. Got home, updated the HD with the newest software and called Comcast to activate the cards. Spent about 25 minutes activating both cards and everything works flawlessly including my HBO channels. No macroblocking at all in the ~8 hours I've been checking for it. Both Motorola cards and on the b2 software.

The rep I was talking to was aware of both the original series 3 and the new HD. She hadn't talked with anyone with the HD yet but was aware that it could take the M-cards. She said she had a printed checklist on how to activate the cards specific to the Tivo. Sounds like Comcast is getting the word out to their people. Now I just have to wait for the bill but am hopeful it will be as smooth as my install.
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Old 08-18-2007, 09:10 PM   #3270
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I'm about ready to leap into the fray again - put a TiVo HD in my Amazon shopping cart (but haven't pulled the pin yet) and phoned the Comcast 800 number for a price. Got a CSR and said I'd like to add a TiVo HD to my service and I'd like to use the "M" card. How much will the monthly charge be?
Waited to silence a few minutes and then heard "If you'd like to make a call..."
Not a good start.

Well, I called again, got a pleasant sounding person who seemed completely unaware of what a TiVo or a cable card was, much less an M series, but, in a somewhat confused manner, she gave me a price of $12.45/month. This was to add the unit to my already existing account which has digital service with a SA8300HD STB. There was also a $17.90 install fee and it required a truck roll. (I will return the STB but I didn't want to confuse the price quote any more than necessary)
I have no idea how the charge breaks down or if she figured adding a cable card, adding 2 cable cards or adding an "M" card to my existing service. Anyway, it's less than what I was being charged for my Series 3 with 2 CCs ($17.90/month plus a $25 truck roll charge - and it was the ONLY outlet at the time - I returned it a month ago and took the 8300). Maybe a trip to the local office on Monday is in order, although having a toenail ripped out is less painful. I hold out hope that all the activity since the TiVo HD introduction a few weeks ago might have generated some experience at the local level.

Last edited by oldnacl : 08-18-2007 at 09:41 PM. Reason: Update
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