Comcast HD and Tivo

Discussion in 'DirecTV TiVo Powered PVRs & Receivers' started by Eagleview, Mar 30, 2004.

  1. Eagleview

    Eagleview New Member

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    Mar 30, 2004
    I'm now up and running with Comcast HD box (Motorola DCT5100) and my Tivo Series 2. In short, it is awesome.

    Set-up: Comcast box S-Video out to Tivo S-Video in. Then running Tivo S-Video out to Panasonic HDTV monitor. For live HD I run the component video out of Comcast box direct to Panasonic.

    Video: Recording HD programming from HBO, Showtime and others onto Tivo. My Panasonic HD monitor set to "zoom mode" displays correct 16:9 aspect ratio. Picture quality is outstanding, far superior to non-HD input picture quality but obviously not HD. Live component HD output to the TV is superior to Tivo recorded HD content.

    Audio: Comcast box is connected direct to my receiver so live programming is 5.1 Dolby Digital on HD channels (HBOHD, Showtime HD). Tivo audio is stereo output but the fidelity of the sound is superior to non-HD (Dolby 5.1) content.

    Results: In short, the combination of upgrading Comcast HD box and Tivo Series 2 is killer. Enjoy!

    Side note: If you are a Comcast HD customer, chances are you have the DCT 5100 from Motorola. Its worth hitting Motorola's Web site to get the documentation, Comcast installer was unaware of several features including digitial audio configuration set-up.
     
  2. Lawrence

    Lawrence New Member

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    Mar 30, 2004
    Pacific...
    Do you have to use the IR blaster to control the Motorola DCT5100 from your TiVo or does the 5100 have a serial connector similar to some non-HD boxes? I now have an HD TV and want to upgrade my cable box, but I dread the thought of going back to the IR blaster.

    Just to be sure I understand, your Series 2 TiVo is not an HD TiVo, correct?
     
  3. turls

    turls New Member

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    Feb 6, 2000
    Central IL
    I've been doing something similar with a Sammy TS160 and a ReplayTV (no sub fee) since 2002. Don't you have to record everything manually like a VCR? That is definite no-fun zone.
     
  4. hongcho

    hongcho .

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    Nov 26, 2003
    San Jose, CA
    > a ReplayTV (no sub fee)

    Don't you mean the "lifetime" subscription? What do you get without a sub?

    Hong.
     
  5. Eagleview

    Eagleview New Member

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    Mar 30, 2004
    Responses to:

    Lawrence: I use the IR blaster to change channels on the DCT5100. That works very well. The DCT 5100 has a 300MIP CPU so the channels change VERY fast on IR. Much faster than the prior DCT model I was using for normal digital cable. I have not tried the serial connection but its on my "todo" list and can see the potential benefits v. IR.

    Turls: Not sure what set up you are using but the DCT5100 has an S-Video out that I run into the Tivo S-Video input. Programming is broadcast directly from the cable box to Tivo where you can store or watch live w/ all the bells and whistles offered by a PVR.

    hongcho: I do subscribe to the Tivo service and not sure how/if it works if you don't subscribe.
     
  6. umbighouse

    umbighouse New Member

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    Dec 18, 2002
    Maryland
    Eagleview-
    I have a Panasonic 53" widescreen TV, and am curious- why did you choose the "Zoom" video setting? Doesn't this crop out material on the sides? I use the "JUST" setting, which fits the 4x3 picture on the screen with only minimal distortion.

    I also have a Comcast (Moto6200) and Series 2 TiVo with HD and am happy to answer most newbie questions that I can.
     
  7. turls

    turls New Member

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    Feb 6, 2000
    Central IL
    The Panasonic ShowStopper had the "lifetime" fee built in to the sale price, technically I guess. They sold it as having no monthly fees.

     
  8. turls

    turls New Member

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    Feb 6, 2000
    Central IL
    Well, yeah, live TV it might work but what about recording shows if you aren't there?

     
  9. Apr 1, 2004 #9 of 43
    Eagleview

    Eagleview New Member

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    Mar 30, 2004
    umbighouse:

    I have 34" Panasonic HD Monitor that is physically a 16:9 configuration. When I playback HD content recorded on Tivo in 4:3 mode, its presented in letterbox. I switch aspect to "Zoom" and it fills entire 16:9 display area in correct aspect (no distortion). None of the top/bottom of the picture is lost and little/none of the sides. Overall big win.

    I also prefer "just" mode on standard 4:3 content - you get used to the image being stretched on the side but for most programming its fine. Hope that helps.
     
  10. azh

    azh New Member

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    Apr 5, 2004
    IL
    "Lawrence: I use the IR blaster to change channels on the DCT5100. That works very well. The DCT 5100 has a 300MIP CPU so the channels change VERY fast on IR. Much faster than the prior DCT model I was using for normal digital cable. I have not tried the serial connection but its on my "todo" list and can see the potential benefits v. IR.
    "

    the DCT5100 has a serial port? unless mine was never installed but I don't see one on there?

    please let me know

    thanks
     
  11. umbighouse

    umbighouse New Member

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    Dec 18, 2002
    Maryland
    There's no serial port on either the 5100 or 6200.
     
  12. dnelon

    dnelon New Member

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    Feb 17, 2004
    Plano, Texas
    I have the Comcast HD box and Tivo setup as described by Eagleview but was totally underwhelmed by the experience. I was hoping that switching to the new Comcast HD box (and obviating the OTA I have for broadcast HD) would solve many problems by alleviating the need of switching inputs on the TV (Mits Integrated HD) to watch HD programming. While I could control the system easily, it drove my wife crazy to not be able to watch one thing while the Tivo was recording since all programming now came through the box (she could never "get" the concept of watching TV on her schedule instead of the broadcaster's). Situation was bad enough that I finally returned the Tivo after a couple of weeks. So, I now wait for a multi tuner system so that she can manage the system herself.
     
  13. umbighouse

    umbighouse New Member

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    Dec 18, 2002
    Maryland
    Did you try splitting the cable signal before it hits the TiVo so that you can watch basic cable while recording something else on the TiVo? I also configured some macros on my remote which toggle between these inputs pretty well.
     
  14. azh

    azh New Member

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    Apr 5, 2004
    IL
    thanks for clarifying umbighouse.

    one more question, if I connect tivo up like this:
    Cable to 5100.
    Component cables from 5100 to TV
    Svideo from 5100 to TiVo
    svideo from tivo to TV

    is it possible to record one show and watch another assuming that the show i'm watching or recording is not HD material? it seems with the above set up I can watch both HD and SD material but the threads i've seen about this dont seem to say whether or not recorinding one and watching one is doable.

    thanks!
     
  15. hongcho

    hongcho .

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    Nov 26, 2003
    San Jose, CA
    I doubt that's how it will work unless 5100 has two tuners.

    I think you can directly hook up the cable cable into the TV to watch the analog channels separately, though. Or to the SA TiVo as well, so that it can record analog channels while you are watching some other digital channels.

    Hong.
     
  16. umbighouse

    umbighouse New Member

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    Dec 18, 2002
    Maryland
    azh-
    It is possible to watch one thing and tape another. The way that you have it connected is correct. However, you'll also want to split the cable source before it gets to the 5100, and send that straight to the TV. Then, you can record something on TiVo, and watch the basic cable on TV. This will require you to switch video inputs on your TV and audio on your a/v receiver. Also, the nice thing about the 5100 and 6200 is that they do simultaneous HD & SD output, so you can record an HD channel even though the recording will only be in SD, because the TiVo is actually recording the SD version of it.
     
  17. dnelon

    dnelon New Member

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    Feb 17, 2004
    Plano, Texas
    You are all technically correct but what I was trying to get away from was switching inputs on the TV. I had to switch to the component inputs to get HD (or pretty bad SD) and then switch to the composite inputs to watch what Tivo had recorded since Tivo has no component outputs. If I just left the TV on the composite inputs she would invariably want to watch the News (or some such) while the Tivo was recording something else. The issue is really my wife's but if Tivo had component outputs and two tuners it would all be solved for those of us with wives/partners who don't "get it"...
     
  18. hongcho

    hongcho .

    750
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    Nov 26, 2003
    San Jose, CA
    > it would all be solved for those of us with wives/partners who don't "get it"...

    Well, that's a completely different technical problem. :p

    Hong.
     
  19. wmcbrine

    wmcbrine Well-Known Mumbler

    11,540
    720
    Aug 2, 2003
    Can you upgrade your wife?
     
  20. dnelon

    dnelon New Member

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    Feb 17, 2004
    Plano, Texas
    I am often tempted but then she would likely say the same :)
     

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