Comcast goes digital. What about my S2D2?

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by EdH, Jan 30, 2012.

  1. EdH

    EdH Member

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    Oct 21, 2000
    Stamford,...
    Soon, Comcast will require their cable box or their "Digital Transport Adapter" on every TV.

    Where does that leave me with my S2 Dual Tuner? Will I lose the use of one of the tuners? Is there some way to keep both tuners working?

    Thanks,

    Ed
     
  2. lillevig

    lillevig Cold in East Iowa

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    Marion, Iowa
    If they are doing away with analog channels altogether then you will need some sort of digital to analog converter for the Tivo. Yes, that will reduce it to a single tuner because the actual channel tuning will be done before the signal gets to the Tivo. The input to the Tivo may still be RF but the Tivo will need to be tuned to a fixed channel (usually 3 or 4). More likely it will be composite video - red, white, yellow cables. You may be able to use an IR blaster from the Tivo to control the converter box.
     
  3. SNJpage1

    SNJpage1 Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    Check with Comcast to see what their Digital Starter package costs. My parents just had analog basic channels and were paying $65 a month. They upgraded to digital starter and it was the same amount. They were given a cable box that was the same size as a hard back book. However, they picked up the On Demand free and paid movies and programs, the music channels and some of the free movie channels like Turner movies all for the same price.
     
  4. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    Ontario Canada.
    It becomes single tuner, since the dual tuner feature can only work with analog cable from the provider, and that is going away. The DTA box coverts only one channel at a time to analog (in fact it is a stripped down cable box), and there are no such boxes that do more.

    If you need to have dual tuner and keep TiVo, you need to upgrade to a TiVo HD or premiere, or an Elite for 4 tuners.
     
  5. Feb 1, 2012 #5 of 20
    EdH

    EdH Member

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    Oct 21, 2000
    Stamford,...
    I was afraid of that. I'll lose the use of the second tuner. Bummer.

    Thanks for all your responses.
     
  6. Feb 1, 2012 #6 of 20
    scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

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    There may be a few analog channels available to you after the change, mostly just the locals, but there may be more. Comcast here "dropped" analog and went digital 2 years ago, but they kept analog channels 2-20, so I still had limited use of both tuners on my DT for a while until I bought a Premiere, but those analog channels are still available.
     
  7. Feb 2, 2012 #7 of 20
    Spl7

    Spl7 New Member

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    Comcast did a phased change here in the NJ area. First go round, I had lots of analog channels. This last go round, they wiped out all the channels (though a few clear QAM digital channels remain).

    This forced me to use an IR blaster and their cable box to record things; they also lied to me. During the change I told them I was irate, that their decision made my very expensive DVR useless. They offered me a cable box for free which my blaster could control. I then saw a monthly 9.25 service fee appear on my box. :mad: More gyrations, and the fee disappeared.

    So, be persistent, and you will get a box for $0 to make your S2 work, but it will only work with one channel.
     
  8. Feb 5, 2012 #8 of 20
    eleanorb

    eleanorb New Member

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    I still don't understand the technical stuff behind this. My Series 2 used both tuners before my provider switched to all-digital. It was wired so that the direct cable feed went to the Tivo (analog tuner) and another split of the feed wend to the cable box which then was fed to the Tivo (digital tuner). So, why wouldn't it work to attach a hardware converter to the incoming digital signal, so that it is changed into analog, and then feed that output to the Tivo, to feed the analog tuner -- in addition to another split of the cable feed to the cable box as now to feed the digital tuner. I have been told that this wouldn't work, but I would really like to understand why.
     
  9. Feb 5, 2012 #9 of 20
    lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

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    John's...
    Oh, you could probably build something that converted a large number of digital channels to separate analog channels and remuxed them to one coax output. Of course, it would be expensive, large, and a power hog. Not a real big market for it either. Plus, I doubt TiVo would be willing to create guide data for that setup.

    IIRC, there has been at least one user who reported using both a DTA and a full cable box on an S2DT. You might search the forum to see if you can find anything about it.
     
  10. buscuitboy

    buscuitboy Member

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    Aug 8, 2005
    Atlanta area
    I ran into the same situation with my Comcast cable and a S2DT Tivo. I wound up tracking down the infared blaster that came with my TiVo and now have the TiVo control my Scientific Atlanta Explorer 2200 digital cable box. Unlike the DTA boxes, these have RCA outputs so was able to connect it to the S2DT and still have some functionality. I think all Comcast customers are entitled to one free FULL digital cable box.

    While I lost the full dual tuner capability for the most part, I am able to use the S2DT to record digital channels. I like to think of my S2DT is now a 1.5 tuner DVR :) Along with a coaxial splitter, I can still record two channels at once if those channels are analog (aka...ch2-26). Anything above ch26 requires recording from the SA digital box (& therefore reduced functionality while recording). You can record a digital channel, but only watch one of the local analog channels (ch2-26 for my area). Better than nothing I suppose.
     
  11. scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

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    and with a phased change, the OP will, for the time being, still have limited analog channels that will allow the DT to utilize both tuners.
     
  12. scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

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    That hardware converter is called a cable box.

    The S2 DT does not have a digital tuner and an analog tuner, it has two analog tuners. The (digital) cable box mentioned directly above would have an analog output going to an analog input and is exactly the same as the first hardware converter scenario that you mentioned. This two box method wouldn't work simply because the S2DT can NOT control to separate cable boxes.
     
  13. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

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    John's...
    A full digital cable box, as opposed to a DTA, has A/V outputs as well. And, as I noted above, someone claimed that they were indeed controlling two boxes with one TiVo. Like you, I don't have any real idea if that is actually possible but that is what he reported.
     
  14. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    I don't have the spare hardware to do the experimentation, but it seems to me that if perhaps you could tell the TiVo you have both a cable box and a satellite receiver so that it would let you connect one to the line ins and one to the co-ax in, you could do it that way, the trick being to find a satellite lineup that matches the cable lineup and finding a satelllite remote code that controls one of the cable boxes but not both.
     
  15. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    Your dual tuner Series 2 has two separate tuners capable of tuning analog cable channels, but not digital ones, and not digital broadcast channels, but the TiVo is only designed to control one external box.

    Does your cable box have yellow, white, and red audio/video output jacks, or just a co-ax output (threaded thing)?
     
  16. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    Simply there is no such thing as a hardware converter that connects to a cable feed and provides a number of analog channels out, at the same time, at least as a little box and end customer can go to their cable office and pick up like they can a regular cable box.

    All of the "converters" the providers supply are stipped down cable boxes, and like cable boxes, tune only one channel at a time, and provide that on their output (usually just RF, because it is a bit cheaper).

    With that, the Series 2 DT, despite having two tuners and encoders, can only be set up for one (1) box of any sort. Ironically perhaps, the Single tuner boxes can be set up for two box sources (only one is used at a time), so long as one of the sources is satellite (which goes without saying is from a box).
    My Single tuner Series 2 is set for satellite and an OTA converter box.
     
  17. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    If you had an old-fashioned cable box, that only output an RF signal on analog channel 3 or 4, could the S2 DT work with that?

    If so, couldn't it also work with a satellite receiver that fed in via the line inputs?
     
  18. jon_harris7

    jon_harris7 New Member

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    I am in the same boat - the only free DTA I can get from Comcast only has an RF output only, no RCA's. But I'm pretty sure this will work OK. I did a dry run tonight through the guided setup and it looks like it will work with the channel 3 RF input from the simple Comcast DTA. But I would love confirmation from someone else who has run in this configuration!
     
  19. unitron

    unitron Well-Known Member

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    That's pretty much how TiVos were set up from the beginning, to work with cable boxes with either RF outputs (the threaded thingie) or line level outputs (the RCA jack things), so the only trick is to make sure that TiVo can provide guide service that matches what the DTA provides as far as what channel is on what channel, and that it can output IR commands that can switch channels on the DTA.
     
  20. jon_harris7

    jon_harris7 New Member

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    Aug 22, 2012
    It's working fine with the Comcast DTA. The IR blaster works and the guide matches, other than the fact that it has a lot more channels than I actually get with my package. But I went through settings and removed the ones I don't get. One one tuner, but it works.
     

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