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Old 08-08-2013, 08:02 AM   #1
buscuitboy
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Question TiVo HD booting issue

I have a TiVO HD (TCD652160) that seems to have an issue when booting up. Basically, it had 1 S-card cable card in it for a few months now and all worked good. It was in a basement bedroom that wasn't used much so I didn't worry about it being a single tuner DVR. I then got a hold of another S-card from Comcast and put it in this TiVo HD. It recognized it, I called Comcast and had it paired and all went well with that. It then became a 2-tuner DVR.

Now, when I reboot it with these two S cable cards, it just seems to get hung up on the "Welcome, powering up" screen. However, if I take the 2nd cable card out and reboot it, it boots up just fine (as a single tuner DVR). I can then re-insert the 2nd cable card and it recognizes it again and functions fine as a 2-tuner DVR.

Is this the way it normally works? Or what else could this be? My series 3 OLED doesn't seem to do this, but maybe these models do.

Also, I realize I could probably just get a single M-card and use this instead, but my local Comcast office has apparently been all out of M-cards for 3 different trips I have made to it over the last 3 months. Due to possible billing issues that may get messed up with my account, I don't want to call them and have them mail me an M-card either so I am just gonna stick with these S-cards for now.

So, do these Series 3 TiVo HDs sometimes work like this? Is there maybe something I am not doing correctly here? Just curious.
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Old 08-08-2013, 08:53 AM   #2
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Check your power supply
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Old 08-08-2013, 08:55 AM   #3
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I have a THD that ran with 2 s-cards for three years and has been running on one m-card for a year now. I've never heard of the behavior you're having. All I can think of is to do a Clear & Delete All and re-pair the cards.

Based on my experience and that reported in this forum I would have to say this is probably the fault of the cable co, since most CableCARD and tuning adapter issues are. But it's usually a matter of luck or stumbling upon a fix when and if they fix it, since they are mostly clueless, and care-less, about TiVo-related issues.
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Old 08-08-2013, 09:05 AM   #4
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I'll open it up and take a look at the power supply, but I would think if it boots up perfectly fine with one cable card, then the power supply would not be the issue, but I guess anything is possible.

Maybe its the cable card itself, but this 2nd cable card was actually previously working fine in a Series 3 OLED (& works fine in this unit once I insert it after it boots up) so not sure that is the issue either, but again, I guess anything is possible

Last edited by buscuitboy : 08-08-2013 at 09:15 AM.
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Old 08-08-2013, 09:52 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by buscuitboy View Post
I'll open it up and take a look at the power supply, but I would think if it boots up perfectly fine with one cable card, then the power supply would not be the issue, but I guess anything is possible.

Maybe its the cable card itself, but this 2nd cable card was actually previously working fine in a Series 3 OLED (& works fine in this unit once I insert it after it boots up) so not sure that is the issue either, but again, I guess anything is possible
My hunch that it could be the power supply is based on a reply to post in another thread by Unitron

http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...rd#post9575210

The suggestion is that cable cards need power and the power demand on boot up is greater than the demand for normal operating.
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Old 08-08-2013, 11:02 AM   #6
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The suggestion is that cable cards need power and the power demand on boot up is greater than the demand for normal operating.
Yea, I later was thinking maybe this could be the case too. Kind of makes some sense. I guess that then points to the power supply being the issue.
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Old 08-08-2013, 01:17 PM   #7
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It's always a good thing to check the power supply since many Series 3 units have had "capacitor disease". Here is a photo of what to look for:
http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...94#post8750894
And if possible check the voltages with a multimeter. If you want to do this, post here and you will get detailed instructions.
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Old 08-08-2013, 01:25 PM   #8
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Symptoms from bad power supplies can vary quite a bit. That is what can make them so hard to diagnose in a PC as well. Much easier in a Tivo as the only other part that goes bad is the hard drive.
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Old 08-10-2013, 05:01 PM   #9
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It didn't happen to me because I'm still on analog cable, but somebody else had a problem with their S3 running okay with cable cards out and crashing with them in, which suggested too much current draw to me (in this case not because anything was going bad and drawing too much current but because the power supply couldn't quite supply all the current needed), and I suggested power supply trouble to them and it turned out that was in fact the problem--the power supply was marginal, and the cable cards pushed it over that limit.
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Old 08-12-2013, 07:50 AM   #10
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--the power supply was marginal, and the cable cards pushed it over that limit.
Yea, I basically think this is what is happening here too. It boots up fine with one cable card, but it won't boot up with two cable cards in it. Once fully running, I can then insert the 2nd cable card. It will recogonize it and will continue to run fine.

Although, the other day it did actually reboot upon inserting the 2nd cable card. This has happened only once, but it still makes me think the power supply has seen its better days. Since I don't have any experience with soldering the capacitors, I have a local shop that has done it. Replaced some bad ones in a previous S3 (OLED) and it cost less than $20. Looks like I may have to call for their services soon here yet again.
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Old 08-12-2013, 08:35 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by buscuitboy View Post
Yea, I basically think this is what is happening here too. It boots up fine with one cable card, but it won't boot up with two cable cards in it. Once fully running, I can then insert the 2nd cable card. It will recogonize it and will continue to run fine.

Although, the other day it did actually reboot upon inserting the 2nd cable card. This has happened only once, but it still makes me think the power supply has seen its better days. Since I don't have any experience with soldering the capacitors, I have a local shop that has done it. Replaced some bad ones in a previous S3 (OLED) and it cost less than $20. Looks like I may have to call for their services soon here yet again.
Wow! $20 ?? Where do you keep your way-back machine?
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Old 08-13-2013, 11:26 AM   #12
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Wow! $20 ?? Where do you keep your way-back machine?
It actually only wound up being one cap that was visibly bad. He said he tested all the rest and they were good. That was over a year ago for that TiVo & it has still been purring along. Hopefully it stays this way.

The place I have used to repair the caps (Entertainment Mart) is in a real old building. Nice guys and the store is a MESS (items ALL over the place), but based on the location and condition of their store, I would guess that they have low overhead so I think this is the reason they can charge so little. They are constantly busy too & taken over a week to get my simple power supplies back since they are so busy. I was never in a big rush and for the price, didn't complain.

I have a neighbor who has used them before too and they basically give free estimates. If you want it repaired, you know the cost. If not, you simply come pick it up (or let them have it). No harm, no foul.

This is unlike a big repair place in our area (Atlanta) called Norman Electronics (2 locations). Last I checked, I think they have a "bench fee" of $80 to just LOOK at your equipment and tell you what is wrong with it. If this would have been the case for me, I would have dumped these lifetime TiVos on ebay a long time ago.Instead, I am just using and supporting this local establishment (in the northern suburbs of Atlanta)

Last edited by buscuitboy : 08-13-2013 at 11:31 AM.
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Old 08-13-2013, 08:08 PM   #13
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maybe the hdd needs to be changed.
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Old 08-14-2013, 08:20 AM   #14
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maybe the hdd needs to be changed.
I thought of this too and ran the WD extended test on the hard drives (for both TiVos) and it came back with no errors so the power supply seems to be the next logical step.
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Old 08-14-2013, 04:25 PM   #15
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I thought of this too and ran the WD extended test on the hard drives (for both TiVos) and it came back with no errors so the power supply seems to be the next logical step.
Increased electrical load (extra cable card) causes problems almost always means power supply inadequacy because of being either faulty or underspec'ed.

This does not rule out the possibility of a co-incidental and unrelated hard drive problem, but you have to get the power supply working properly before you can interpret any other symptoms.
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Old 08-15-2013, 06:24 AM   #16
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Does it do the same thing if you remove the 'original' cablecard and leave the suspect card in while booting?

in other words ... does it only happen when both cards are installed?

just checking to see if there is something unique about that 'new' second card during initialization causing the trouble.
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Old 08-15-2013, 10:21 AM   #17
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Exclamation

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Originally Posted by Hi8 View Post
Does it do the same thing if you remove the 'original' cablecard and leave the suspect card in while booting?

in other words ... does it only happen when both cards are installed?

just checking to see if there is something unique about that 'new' second card during initialization causing the trouble.
Yea, it only seems to happen when both cards are installed during boot-up. If I have one cable card in it, it boots up fine. Once fully booted up, it USUALLY then allows me to insert the 2nd cable card. Detects it and no problems. I say "usually" though as the other night when I inserted the 2nd cable card (after bootup), it wound up doing a full reboot on its own. This has happened only once, but its kind of concerning & pretty much confirms that its most likely a power supply issue.
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:33 PM   #18
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Yea, it only seems to happen when both cards are installed during boot-up. If I have one cable card in it, it boots up fine. Once fully booted up, it USUALLY then allows me to insert the 2nd cable card. Detects it and no problems. I say "usually" though as the other night when I inserted the 2nd cable card (after bootup), it wound up doing a full reboot on its own. This has happened only once, but its kind of concerning & pretty much confirms that its most likely a power supply issue.
I think I went over 12 months witout restarting my TiVo(s) - have them on UPSs. Never really a need. Kinda like a refrigerator, so why the concern uless you just want it fixed?
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Old 08-15-2013, 06:53 PM   #19
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I think I went over 12 months witout restarting my TiVo(s) - have them on UPSs. Never really a need. Kinda like a refrigerator, so why the concern uless you just want it fixed?
I'm lucky to go two weeks without having to restart (and power cycle the TA) when I lose some or all SDV channels. I'm guessing you don't use a TA.

Anyway, a power supply so marginal it won't handle a boot up with two CC's needs fixing.
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