Do Not Buy A Tivo HD

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by Chimpware, Aug 1, 2007.

  1. Aug 1, 2007 #1 of 197
    Chimpware

    Chimpware New Member

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    Jan 30, 2002
    I would strongly recommend that anyone considering buying a Tivo HD not do so. I just went through my installation of 2 cable cards each, in the 2 Tivo HD units I bought this past weekend. In both cases Cable Card Slot 2, on both Tivos does not tune most of the digital channels and has heavy pixelation, and Cable Card Slot 1, while it does tune all the stations it is supposed to has pixelation even few minutes briefly. In both cases the Tivo is hooked up to the same cable that I had an 8300 HD on.

    I spent a 1/2 hour on hold waiting for Tivo Tech support, who then walked me through reading information off the screen without any ideas as to how to remedy this problem. Eventually I switched the cards in one of the Tivos and called Cablevision to rebind the cards. Cablevision did this not problem, and again Cable Card Slot 2 had same issues. All the people at Cablevision were helpful and in no way did I feel they were adding to the problem so I would use their products and services.

    I am convinced Tivo has a serious issue on their hands here. I bought the 2 Tivos from 2 different Circuit City stores this weekend so the odds that 2 separate units from 2 spearate stores exhibit the same issue seems like a big problem. If you check out others experiences on the board you will find very similar results.

    I have to say all through this Cablevision was fantastic, the Tech was knowledgeable, and although he had not worked on the HD yet, he had installed cards in Series 3 units before. It appears from my testing that all 4 cards worked, and when I called to rebind I was on hold for only a minute, and only spent a total of 10 minutes on the call.

    So if you want to spend multiple days trying to get a new buggy product to work and doing the troubleshooting and development for Tivo, get on board and get a new Tivo HD. If you expect the Tivo experience with this product, where you connect it, it works and the user experience is great, forget it. I take back every bad thing I have said about the SA 8300 HD, as much as I don't like many of the ways it works and find it annoying, it does 1 thing Tivo HD does not, and that is WORK!

    Bu Bye Tivo, it was a short return. Good luck with your new products. :mad:

    EDIT / Update on 9/10/07:
    Well in my opinion it is now time to buy the Tivo HD. It has been an interesting journey, but after testing the most recent update over the weekend I am convinced that Tivo has remedied the macroblocking/pixelation issue for the bulk of the remaining users who were still experiencing this problem. I personally came very close to returing the systems, even to the point of have both back in their original cartons, but I kept them and am now happy I did.

    As I mentioned earleir in this thread if you have an 8300 HD and want a better experience get a Tivo HD, now ready for primetime (and just in time for the new fall schedule).
     
  2. Aug 1, 2007 #2 of 197
    profet

    profet Member

    67
    2
    Aug 27, 2004
    man am I getting nervous... cablevision comes saturday with my cablecards...

    Oh boy...

    Does anyone have a TivoHD with a non pixelated picture from card #2?
     
  3. Aug 1, 2007 #3 of 197
    aus1ander

    aus1ander New Member

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    Sep 17, 2004
    This appears to be a known issue with quite a few people mentioning problems with slot-2 pixelation. See the issues thread. This is the risk of buying new hardware and being an early adopter. Undoubtedly, once TiVo reproduces this in the lab, there will be a software patch.
     
  4. Aug 1, 2007 #4 of 197
    brermike

    brermike Member

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    May 31, 2006
    Johns Creek, GA
    I'm sorry you are having such problems, I am very satisfied with my Tivo HD. I had a very successfuly cable card install (Comcast with 2 Motorolla cards) and don't experience any source pixelation nor missing digital channels. Hopefully, your problems will be resolved soon.
     
  5. Aug 1, 2007 #5 of 197
    Fist of Death

    Fist of Death Bon Vivant

    116
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    Jan 4, 2002
    The Emerald...
    Unless it's a hardware issue. :eek:
     
  6. Aug 1, 2007 #6 of 197
    anoneemus

    anoneemus New Member

    16
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    Jul 28, 2004
    has anyone called Tivo about this issue?
     
  7. Aug 1, 2007 #7 of 197
    20TIL6

    20TIL6 BaDoop BaDoop BaDoop

    861
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    Sep 7, 2006
    Cypress, TX
    http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb/showthread.php?t=359993

    I experienced problems like this on 2 S3 units, plus a cablecard TV (with no TiVo connected).

    I am having no more problems, and the TiVo HD I bought last Friday (two cablecards activated on Monday) is doing fine, no problems at all.

    In the cases where some channels don't come in at all, all I can say is that until recently I have had my doubts as to whether my cable company was properly activating the cards. It seems to me that the more of a pain in the butt I became to Comcast, and they figured out that I did not mind at all having a few truck rolls out to my place, that things seemed to work themselves out.

    The tiling issue, or pixelation, I think is an issue of channel cramming from the cable company. Again, I was persistant, and things have worked out.

    I can understand your frustration, and I can't be sure of your problem, but I really think this might be an issue of cable companies learning to truly support cablecard devices. Kind of like if there was only one web browser, your development and testing of web pages would be simpler. I think cable companies are having to take a deeper look into how their channels are arranged in order to support cablecards in wider range of CE devices.

    Of course, if folks get mad at their CE devices and go back to cable in-house equipment, then they won't have to do much at all.

    See if your cable company can bring out one of their STB's that use cablecards. I don't know if that will uncover anything. I had this tiling across multiple devices, one with no TiVo involved at all. Eventually, my TiVo S3's stopped having problems. But my cablecard TV (with no TiVo) continued having problems. I actually fixed that remaining issue by ADDING a TiVo HD to it.

    I think that as cable companies begin to deploy their own STB's with cablecards, we will see cablecard support in general get much better.
     
  8. Aug 1, 2007 #8 of 197
    Chimpware

    Chimpware New Member

    334
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    Jan 30, 2002
    Thanks, was very frustrated after 5 hours of trying to get the Tivos to work when I posted. I am glad your experience was/is better than mine. I was just trying to make people aware that if they are thinking that this is a Generation 2 product based on the Series 3 systems and will work seamlessly, it is clearly not. I would not argue whether it could work or not, I am just saying you are really rolling the dice here.

    If I were hacking the unit, or trying to enable functions that I was not supposed to be using it would be one thing to have a drawn out troubleshooting experience, but just hooking it up out of the box? Hacking my old DirecTivo to add a larger drive and MRV, etc. was a more seemless and nicer experience than I have had so far.
     
  9. Aug 1, 2007 #9 of 197
    TokyoShoe

    TokyoShoe Frustrated TiVoHD'er

    118
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    Jul 27, 2007
    Houston, Texas
    Just for the record: I've got a brand new TiVoHD that I bought this past weekend from Circuit City here near me in Houston, Texas. I slotted and bound both CableCards with ComCast, zero problems.

    So far I have had 2 spots of pixelation both they were extremely short, and both during severely inclimate weather (heavy heavy rain). I have not seen one stitch of pixelation since that point. I get full digital cable channels on both cards, excellent recording quality.. and full HD channels and HD quality on both cards as well.


    So far I am EXTREMELY pleased and happy with my TiVo!
     
  10. Aug 1, 2007 #10 of 197
    riekl

    riekl New Member

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    Jan 29, 2001
    Your problems are cable card problems, not Tivo HD problems however nice the tech might be.
     
  11. Aug 1, 2007 #11 of 197
    Tallguy001

    Tallguy001 Member

    74
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    Sep 5, 2003
    Milwaukee, WI
    I have to disagree. Numerous people are having the exact same problem (slot 2 is not working), including myself. When the card is taken out of slot 2 and reprogrammed in slot 1, it works just fine and the "good" card that was working in slot 1 will have problems in slot 2. There are too many examples on this board for this to be a coincidence.
     
  12. Aug 1, 2007 #12 of 197
    jmaditto

    jmaditto New Member

    143
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    Jul 29, 2007
    Columbia, SC
    Could be combination of the box and the company's cablecards I guess. Seems like if it were either a design issue with the hardware or software then everyone would have it....some are reporting no issues. Will have to follow this closely over the next few weeks. Strange.
     
  13. Aug 1, 2007 #13 of 197
    frostrambler

    frostrambler New Member

    39
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    Feb 6, 2005
    The design issue is an incompatibility with the TivoHD and the Scientific Atlanta cablecards, notice that people who have motorola cards have no problems, only SA cards.

    Cablevision is exclusively SA, I have two SA cards from Cablevision in my TivoHD, both are dead because of firmware upgrades failing, I have my second truckroll scheduled for tomorrow, they installed the cards yesterday, both failed even before the tech left, he had no more. They were supposed to come this morning, and then switched the appointment without telling me to tomorrow morning. I am pretty pissed at cablevision now.
     
  14. Aug 1, 2007 #14 of 197
    Illrigger

    Illrigger New Member

    17
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    Jul 26, 2007
    I don't know about that. Given that many of us aren't seeing issues of the severity you're reporting, I still say that at least some of the issues relate to the cards or how the cable company provisions them. I have two motorola cards, and I get the pixelization issues, but setup went perfectly and the issues persist whether I have one or two cards in the box. I get service through the local power company rather than Comcast or the others, and they seemed far more competent than the reports I've been reading; I just picked up the cards myself, slapped them in, called the service number, read off the pairing information, and an hour later I was provisioned and running on both tuners. It was so simple that I somehow doubt that the TiVo has much to do with the setup issues, it has to be something wrong with the cards and/or the cable co. Given that they may or may not WANT you to get rid of your box (and along with it the lucrative PPV and On Demand programming premiums), you can't rule out that they make this difficult on purpose.
     
  15. Aug 1, 2007 #15 of 197
    aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    22,941
    996
    Jan 31, 2002
    Northern...
    So if there is a problem with slot 2 it sounds like a mutistream card in slot one would be a workaround since you only need one mutistream card for both tuners.
     
  16. Aug 1, 2007 #16 of 197
    profet

    profet Member

    67
    2
    Aug 27, 2004
    Unless the problem is with processing power. If the decoders are being overworked then well... its a hardware problem.
     
  17. Aug 1, 2007 #17 of 197
    TokyoShoe

    TokyoShoe Frustrated TiVoHD'er

    118
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    Jul 27, 2007
    Houston, Texas
    You might be on to something here.
    I have 2 Motorola Cards (ComCast Houston uses only these), and so far have zero problems in either slot. My first two cards paired up and started working right off the bat. Still no quality issues either.

    If I had an SA Card to test with, I could help test this theory. Unfortunately all I have are Motorola cards. :(
     
  18. Aug 1, 2007 #18 of 197
    aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    22,941
    996
    Jan 31, 2002
    Northern...
    I thought the TiVoHD has more processing power than the Series 3 not less?
     
  19. Aug 1, 2007 #19 of 197
    Illrigger

    Illrigger New Member

    17
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    Jul 26, 2007
    There is a definite pattern emerging with the SA cards, if you look through all the threads.
     
  20. Aug 1, 2007 #20 of 197
    fishboy

    fishboy Member

    37
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    Aug 19, 2002
    Atlanta
    I'm getting really nervous now... I've got two Tivo HD's on order and Comcast coming on Friday 8/10. In my area, they only use the SA 8300 boxes, so I would assume that they only use the SA cablecards too. Let's hope I'm wrong.
     

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