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HD TiVo - Sporadic "black" channels

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by telstar, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. telstar

    telstar Member

    35
    0
    Sep 4, 2002
    I'm using an HD TiVo with the factory HD, lifetime service, and a Cablecard provided by Optimum.


    Recently, the device has started behaving somewhat unreliably. The most common indicator of a problem is that I'll receive some channels, but I won't receive other channels (they'll appear black but won't show the no signal message). This happens every few days, but other times it's more-sporadic and will be fine for a week or two.

    A reboot (using the TiVo menus) or a hard reboot (by pulling the power cable) seems to remedy the problem, but I'm trying to diagnose whether the problem is my TiVo or possibly the cablecard. I haven't tried swapping out the cablecard yet (previous interactions with Optimum have been a combination of hostility/confusion regarding my cablecard use. The only way I could have them diagnose the problem would be to leave it in it's "broken" state after it occurs, schedule service, then have them come look at it a week or more later, which isn't really possible.

    I'd also like to avoid having them come service my signal only to tell me that the problem is my TiVo then charge me for a service call.

    I was wondering whether this symptom was an indicator of a hardware problem with my TiVo or whether the cablecard is the likely culpret.
     
  2. Teeps

    Teeps Well-Known Member

    1,885
    41
    Aug 16, 2001
    Torrance,Cal...
    Both of my tivos with cable cards & tuning adapters exhibit this behavior at times.
    Rebooting (by pulling plug) tuning adapter most time solves the problem, other times have to reboot tivo too.
     
  3. ThAbtO

    ThAbtO TiVoholic by the bay

    9,035
    370
    Apr 6, 2000
    SF Bay Area
    Maybe some errors in the setting of the channels.

    Try another reboot, followed by Guided setup.
     
  4. telstar

    telstar Member

    35
    0
    Sep 4, 2002
    Nah, it's definitely a hardware-type of issue. It's not just black channels. Freeze-ups. Unresponsiveness to the remote. Reboots.

    Just not sure whether it's hard drive or something else. I'm going to open up the unit tonight and check inside to see how much dust and debris has accumulated over the years. Our TiVo is in a pretty hot enclosure with poor ventilation so it wouldn't surprise me if some hardware is failing. Not sure if there's a way to test the cable card for any issues apart from just trying a replacement.

    I've also read this thread about capacitors but can't find the photos referenced there.
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2018
  5. Teeps

    Teeps Well-Known Member

    1,885
    41
    Aug 16, 2001
    Torrance,Cal...
    Photo's here: TiVo Power Supply Problems - Burst Capacitors

    I would start with replacing the capacitors.
    Here's a how to: Repair a Broken Series 3 TiVo
    If you don't want to DIY; google TV or Appliance repair in your area, for a repair shop.
     

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