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Old 03-11-2014, 02:13 AM   #1
Andrea4
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Charter All Digital WI

Hi. So Charter has gone all digital in my area of Wisconsin. We have a few TVs in the house and mine is the only one with a Tivo. My sister is the main person on the account and she doesn't really understand the whole Tivo thing and forgets I have it. They have an HD box upstairs in the living room that still works since the digital switch I believe. They got a different box for the basic TV in the bedroom. Tonight her boyfriend brought me a new HD box so that I can still get cable. Well right now I don't think my HD box is activated anyways but there is no way I can use it with my Tivo correct? Do I need a CableCard or some other box? Right now I just have my Tivo set up on AV2 so that I can at least watch my recorded shows.
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Old 03-11-2014, 02:37 AM   #2
Andrea4
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I have a Tivo HD by the way
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Old 03-11-2014, 02:45 AM   #3
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You need a CableCARD. If you already have one then your TiVo should continue to work just as it did before. However if you don't currently have a Tuning Adapter you may need one. Although in my area there are only like 3 HD channels that require the TA so if you don't get those channels, or don't care about them, then it may not matter.
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Old 03-11-2014, 03:02 AM   #4
Andrea4
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I don't have a CableCARD or Tuning Adapter. I have been living without the digital/HD channels I don't receive. I have had a CableCARD before but what is the Tuning Adapter for? Does Charter charge for both?
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Old 03-11-2014, 05:15 AM   #5
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The CableCARD should only be $2.50/mo and the TA should be free. It should actually be cheaper then the cable box your brother got for you.

The tuning adapter is an external device that allows your TiVo to communicate with the cable company servers for the purpose of supporting a technology called Switched Digital Video. SDV is a way to squeeze more channels into limited bandwidth. Basically it takes a block of lesser watch channels and assigns them to a smaller block of frequencies. (i.e. 20 channels may be assigned to a block of just 10 frequencies) When someone on your node (i.e. in your neighborhood) requests one of these channels it's dynamically assigned a free frequency in that block and then the cable company server tells your TiVo or cable box which frequency to tune to. The idea is that there is little chance that every channel in the block will be being watched at the same time by people on your node, so there is no reason to actually dedicate a frequency to each one. However the CableCARD standard provides no method for the device to communicate with the cable company servers, so the TA was invented to fill that gap and allow CableCARD devices to tune SDV channels.
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Old 03-11-2014, 11:24 AM   #6
FrodoB
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan203 View Post
The CableCARD should only be $2.50/mo and the TA should be free. It should actually be cheaper then the cable box your brother got for you.
They're actually only $2 a month up in these parts, with free TAs.

Fair warning: You'll almost certainly need a truck roll to get people who can actually get your card provisioned correctly. The call center folks say they are entering the data and you get nothing but blinking lights on the TA. Then the techs show up at the house, call dispatch, read off the numbers, and things work within seconds. They have yet to charge me for a truck roll because it's always their mistake. (And most of the time I'm showing the techs how to navigate the TiVo menus.)

Do be thankful that you don't have an OLED S3. Great box, don't get me wrong, but Charter's system wants them to have a 1-to-1 correlation between CableCARDs and TAs, so for a 2 CC-to-1 TA situation, they have to enter the info and pray.

Edit: However, they haven't converted Middleton yet, so I'm wary of messed up lineups and/or technical incompetence that will necessitate further fixes. But the local techs in the Madison area at least seem to mostly know what they're doing if you mention tuning adapters (since they send out the experienced guys for that).
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Old 03-11-2014, 01:02 PM   #7
Andrea4
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So I still don't really want HD TV at all since I can record more shows without it and the picture looks fine to me. Will the CableCARD or Tuning Adapter make the channels HD? And I thought I saw something on here about only being able to use one tuner with a CableCARD. Is that true or can I still use both?

FrodoB: A little confused by your comment..Will Charter give me the CableCARD and maybe Tuning Adapter to install and activate myself? But then if that doesn't work, I will still need a truck roll? I am in Mazomanie by the way.
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Old 03-11-2014, 02:22 PM   #8
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You don't have to record HD. You'll be able to record any channels you want. Although now that they are all digital you'll no longer be able to set the quality (i.e. Best, High, Medium, Basic) The channels will be recorded as-is and you'll be stuck with the quality and size the cable company chooses for those stations. In my area the SD channels look pretty terrible, so you may want to switch to HD just because of that.

I've had a similar experience to FrodoB here. They will give you a CableCARD and TA to activate yourself, but there is a high likelihood they will not be able to activate it properly over the phone and you'll need to have someone come out. When the tech arrives he'll call in on his special line and they'll typically have it working in a matter of minutes. The people you call on the phone just aren't trained well on how to deal with CableCARDs and they typically screw something up. Although I have got lucky a few times and got someone that knew what they were doing, but it's rare.
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Old 03-11-2014, 03:28 PM   #9
Andrea4
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Ok. Thanks for all the info. I can't get to the store until at least tomorrow night so I am without any cable for now since they can't get this box to work for some reason. At least I have stuff on my Tivo I can watch. Hopefully I don't have any issues with the CableCARD when I try to activate it.
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Old 04-08-2014, 01:35 PM   #10
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Well, they flipped the switch in Madison last night, and helpfully seem to have not bothered to tell Zap2It. I re-ran Guided Setup on our Premiere with no assistance yet; as far as I can tell, there's only the single channel lineup to choose from. Interestingly, I can pick the new channels in my Channel Listing, and they come in, but there's no guide data. (I'm guessing the CableCARD or tuning adapter picked up the new map?) And the channels that moved (Disney HD is the nasty one; the daughter loves her Doc McStuffins) of course are still being recorded in their old slots which are either new channels or nothing.

Any suggestions from those who have been in the trenches on this?
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Old 04-08-2014, 01:41 PM   #11
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A few weeks ago I got a lineup change automatically with the new channels from Charter. A month before that I redid the guided setup because the music channels weren't working correctly on my TiVo (they were named differently than they actually were). Maybe you could rerun guided setup and the new channels would show up correctly.
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Old 04-08-2014, 03:02 PM   #12
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Hmm. I got notification like two days ago about a handful of new channels, but nothing on the order of the 20-30 I added this morning, not a one of which have guide data. Maybe they helpfully forgot Middleton when telling Zap2It?

...

Checking Zap2It with a handful of Madison-area zip codes, it looks my like old zip code is serviced by the guide data for Mazomanie and has the update, but my new Middleton zip code is serviced by the guide data for Madison and hasn't been updated. Thanks, Charter.... Maybe I should re-run Guided Setup with my old zip for now.
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