Charter S-Card problem?

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by Dan203, May 9, 2011.

  1. May 9, 2011 #1 of 12
    Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    I have 3 HD TiVos. Two are S3 units each with 2 S-Cards that have been installed and working for several years. The other is a Premiere which uses a single M-Card. Tonight I came home to discover that nothing scheduled for today on one of the S3 units had recorded. I checked live TV and I could not tune any channels. I rebooted the TiVo thinking it had some sort of problem, but when it came back the problem still existed. Then I checked the other S3 and it has the exact same problem. If I go into the "Test Channels" section of the CableCARD menu the only channels I can tune are the music channels and the PPV preview channel. It wont even let me switch to the other channels. The weird part is that the Premier, with the M-Card, works fine.

    I tried calling the 800 number, but the automated system just said there was a "known issue in my area" and that it would be fixed "in a few hours" and wouldn't let me proceed to talking to a person. It's been out all day, and possibly yesterday, because I missed a recording at 8:00am this morning and it's still not working at 11:00pm, so their "few hours" estimate seems unlikely. Plus like I said this is only effecting the TiVos with the S-Cards so it seems suspect that this would be some general outage in my area.

    Has anyone else had any trouble with Charter and S-Cards recently? I'm wondering is maybe they're phasing them out and forgot to tell me?

    Dan
     
  2. May 9, 2011 #2 of 12
    SpiritualPoet

    SpiritualPoet Member

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    I'm on Charter and in my area Charter uses M cards. I've had my card since August, 2010 (never had a card before then, but Charter discontinued S cards sometime ago, I was told - for my area).
     
  3. May 9, 2011 #3 of 12
    Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    So I called the 800 number a few more times and talked to a few people just to see if I could get them to reauthorize the cards or something. They couldn't! All they could do was schedule an appointment for tomorrow. One of them suggested I take the S-Cards to the local office and swap them for M-Cards so I tried to do that but they told me that they're not allowed to give CableCARDs directly to customers and that I'd have to wait for the appointment tomorrow so the tech could swap them. Although she did say there is a chance the problem will be fixed before then and my cards will start working again, but I don't have much hope myself. :(

    Dan
     
  4. May 9, 2011 #4 of 12
    Resist

    Resist Well-Known Member

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    If Charter couldn't reinitialize your cablecards over the phone, then most likely they are defective. Have you tried reseating them? Sometimes that works.

    Not surprising that Charter won't let you take your failed cards in and get the replacements yourself. Even though it's not hard for customers to install their own cablecards, then give them the ID numbers to initialize them. If they let customers do this, then new customers could install their own cards and Charter would miss out on the $35 install fee.

    Just make sure Charter understands to bring extra M-Cards, just in case what they bring fails. If not and it does fail, then you will end up waiting another day. When one of my Series 3 S-cards failed I specifically told the rep on the phone to have the tech bring an extra card. Yet he showed up with only one M-Card. Thankfully it worked. But initially he tried to tell me the card wasn't the problem, that it was my cable. I insisted the card was the problem and the replacement has worked fine ever since. Charter techs apparently aren't trained to be techs.
     
  5. brewman

    brewman Member

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    Jun 28, 2003
    You'll need two M-cards, because the S3 can't multi-stream and just treats each M-Card like an S-Card.
     
  6. donnoh

    donnoh Member

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    Mar 7, 2008
    I just had a Charter tech out yesterday because of a problem with an M card in one of my Premieres. It started having problems tuning in some of the premium channels the day after a major storm. I would tune to one of those channels and it would say not authorized and then the cable card screen would pop up. This was especially annoying when watching something if the other tuner tuned to one of these channels to record a suggestion because it dropped me out of what I was watching.

    The Charter tech got the serial number from the card and called a support number. They determined that the host ID was not correct and once they entered the correct info everything worked fine. I'm not sure why this happened because it had been working fine since last summer when I got the Premiere, but I suppose the storm must have reset something on their end.
     
  7. Resist

    Resist Well-Known Member

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    And to think, all Charter had to do was let you call the serial number in and you would have been back up in minutes, instead you had to schedule a appointment for a tech come to your house.
     
  8. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Well my appointment was scheduled for today 3-5pm. I just checked the TiVos and they are working properly again. So whatever the outage was they must have got it fixed on their end, so I canceled the appointment.

    I just heard a commercial on the radio that they are adding a bunch more HD channels in my area. About a year ago they came and installed tuning adapters on all my TiVos but they were never actually used. Perhaps they were trying to get them working so they could add the new HD channels and f*cked up the server that authorizes S-Cards. I actually don't even have the tuning adapters hooked up right now, but if I get a notice from TiVo that they added more channels I'm probably going to need them again.

    Dan
     
  9. donnoh

    donnoh Member

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    I can't complain about Charter. I've had very few (one) problem since I've had my Tivo's. Their tech support guys that have come to my house are professional and have gotten my cable cards working in a few minutes.

    They also just upgraded my Internet service to 12 Mb/sec which is the minimum,they offer a max of 60 Mb/sec for another $20 a month. Overall for $160/month for Internet/phone and cable including two pay services I'm very satisfied with what they provide for the price.

    Call me a Charter fan boy, but they offer a good service for a good price.
     
  10. Stuxnet

    Stuxnet Alien Infidel

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    Feb 8, 2011
    That's been my experience too... Phone support is another matter. Recently I had one go ballistic on me when I requested the call be escalated to a Supervisor. Their last words were "I'll escalate you all right..." and with that the outburst ended and my call was rudely disconnected.
     
  11. donnoh

    donnoh Member

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    The problem with phone support is that you never know what kind of person you will get. Some are really good, some are really crappy. When I have called Charter I have always gotten an American, which is important to me as they can relate to me more than a foreign person can. If you're kind to them, in my opinion they can escalate the call to the people that can fix things.

    I recently bought a Roku player and couldn't get it to add a new channel. I called their tech support and had to speak with the worst phone support I've ever experienced. If I spoke Indian I might have been OK, so I called back and the same thing. I'm real close to being an only buy American guy.
     
  12. Resist

    Resist Well-Known Member

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    You seriously think $160 a month is a good price? OMG!

    I am not a Charter fan, if you couldn't tell. But I do like Their internet service. I used to have Charter's phone service but have since gotten an Ooma and love it much better. Now I pay nothing for home telephone. I am also very close to going OTA and dropping Charter cable TV, because in my opinion it's to expensive. And they make you buy channels you don't want. All I want is HiDef content but I'm forced to purchase other channels to get it.

    Since adding to this thread, now my Series 3 S-Card, is starting to mess up and not pulling in content just like the last S-card that failed did. Guess I will have Charter come out and replace this Card with an M-Card.
     

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