Macroblocking & other errors with FiOS

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by BiohazrD, Jan 15, 2016.

  1. BiohazrD

    BiohazrD New Member

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    Jan 12, 2016

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    So I've been having a signal issue with FiOS, essentially getting tons of distortion and glitches on the screen.

    I've read that attenuators may be needed with the FiOS ONT but most of the people using them have a SNR that is too high (>31dB).

    In my case, connecting the TiVo directly to the ONT results in no signal strength and a SNR that fluctuates constantly from 9-21 dB, just as if the coax were completely disconnected. By adding in a 6 way splitter (11.5 dB drop) the SNR jumps to 26 and the signal strength hovers around 67%. I've tried using smaller splitters (2-4 way) with the result being that the TiVo once again acts like it is not connected, again with the SNR jumping from 9-21 dB.

    Does this sound like an overpowered ONT output? Will attenuators fix this?
     
  2. bwhitney

    bwhitney Member

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    Apr 12, 2009
    Kearneysvill...
    Actually this sounds like the software bug introduced during the Winter 2015 update. While some of us have had some success using attenuation, Tivo engineering is trying to identify the bug and put out a patch.

    Please see the thread in Help titled "Winter 2015 Update Breaks Cablecard" for details. I am beta testing a software version now that works after power cycles, but not restarts unless I add attenuation.

    Tivo is working the issue.

    Brad
     
  3. BiohazrD

    BiohazrD New Member

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    Jan 12, 2016
    It seems that most people in there have the Roamio. Is it a Bolt issue as well? Because I'm using a Bolt
     
  4. SomeRandomIdiot

    SomeRandomIdiot New Member

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    Jan 7, 2016
    Was this just earlier today? Or long time issue?
     
  5. BiohazrD

    BiohazrD New Member

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    Jan 12, 2016

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    I just got my TiVo and fios this past week so it's been just a few days
     
  6. SomeRandomIdiot

    SomeRandomIdiot New Member

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    Jan 7, 2016
    Then what I was thinking of is not relevant to your situation if this has been for several days.
     
  7. BiohazrD

    BiohazrD New Member

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    Jan 12, 2016
    Verizon tech came out. Signal is golden.

    TiVo tech support told me it's an HDMI issue. Yeah, the menu and on screen stuff is totally fine, and the actual cable channels are distorted so it has to be HDMI :rolleyes:

    I spent $700 on your equipment and now I'm going to return all of it and buy an HDHomeRun Prime. Sorry TiVo.
     
  8. bwhitney

    bwhitney Member

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    Apr 12, 2009
    Kearneysvill...
    Your problem is not an HDMI issue, as you stated the Menu comes up fine, but the channels are not viewable. HDMI would be all or nothing in 99% of the cases. It is an Signal Strength problem Tivo introduced in the Winter 2015 updates.

    I have the same problems as dozens of other are having problems. In my case, I had to add 17.5 db of attenuation to get a usable signal and it also depends if you Help->Restart or Power Cycle the Tivo as to how much attenuation is needed. I have been beta testing various releases under the quattro development releases and they still have haven't got is right.

    The same Winter 2015 release broke HDMI for some users, a problem I experienced last night, but used Sony's HDMI troubleshooting procedure of unplugging everything for 30 seconds, then plugging the devices back in, one at a time and it cleared it up for me.

    HDMI ports are always powered unless the device is unplugged, so you can't get a reset, except by unplugging the power from the HDMI devices. They are pushing a new release, RC21, to try and fix the HDMI problems, as so many people have been affected, but the Signal Strength problem is still not totally corrected.

    As to your decision to dump Tivo, given their extremely poor communications about these problems, and lack of proper QC, I can understand your frustration.

    Brad
     
  9. BiohazrD

    BiohazrD New Member

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    Jan 12, 2016
    It's my understanding that the signal issue introduced in that update does not effect the bolt. However if I'm mistaken I'm willing to try and get it corrected. How does one get the beta?
     
  10. shamilian

    shamilian Member

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    Mar 26, 2003
    NJ
    splitters do not make great attenuators.
    They reduce your signal but add noise/reflect signal.

    ignore snr and use signal strength to diagnose.

    did then verizon tech hookup a box and tune into different channels. if he use his meter he mostly just got a signal strength reading.

    tivo signal strength should be over 80% and less than 100%.
    if you have 67% with 11db, then use 8 or 9db.

    my signal levels seem to change from time to time(months), ( not sure if it is tivo OS version or fios tweaking their levels...) so I add or remove attenuation to get the signal level in the high 90% on most channels.(you can stack attenuators, add or remove 3db at a time)

    you should not need this but, in older versions of tivo hardware/software i also used a low pass filter which blocked high frequencies (fios supplied these to me), the low pass filter blocked above 860mhz which was confusing the older tivo tuner.
    the low pass filter will also block the moca signal so make sure you are not using moca and put it near the tivo so you do not block ont to router connection if that is using moca.


    you may also have a defective bolt, if you are within 30days call tivo and tell them to note your account and extend your new return exchange to 60days (aftyer 30days I think they will send you a refurb unless your account is noted). if you bought it at a retailer and cant resolve the issue go and get an exchange from them.
     
  11. BiohazrD

    BiohazrD New Member

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    Jan 12, 2016
    None of this should be needed for a consumer product.

    With a 4 way splitter in the basement (to distribute signal to all of my major rooms) and a 2 way in the living room, I get 67% signal strength. Removing or adding any splitters or attenuators (the tech had some) instantly results in complete signal loss
     
  12. fcfc2

    fcfc2 Well-Known Member

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    Feb 19, 2015
    Hi,
    If I were you, I would return the Bolt asap and try another unit. The issue might be software but I would try another Bolt before I gave up. Tivo is a much easier to use than going the HDHomerun Prime which also can be buggy.
    Did the installer replace those splitters with the Verizon branded ones. In my area(FL.) the installers routinely do this if they are not already installed. Also, I don't know where the installer tested the signal strength, but if it wasn't in the same location as the Bolt, it is useless.
    Generally, Fios signal strength tends to be high and sufficient to easily go through 2-3 splitters.
     
  13. SomeRandomIdiot

    SomeRandomIdiot New Member

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    Jan 7, 2016
    Not defending either party, but Macroblocking is usually caused with motion (which I would need to do a long layout of I Frames, P Frames and B Frames to get into).

    You do not have this with a static image (such as the GUI).

    FWIW, I had some issues over the weekend with FiOS. All the channels specs "looked fine" inside the home.

    However, as I know the techs pretty well, I had them check the feed prior to the ONT from the Plant. The 1550nm (which is where the 870 Mhz of video is distributed on the fiber) was low coming to the ONT. They went back and changed my connection on the Fiber Splitter, only to find that was low as well. Turned out the Splitter had gone bad and they had to get a construction crew to change out the splitter in the plant.
     
  14. BiohazrD

    BiohazrD New Member

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    Jan 12, 2016
    The only problem with this is my Verizon supplied DVR works fine
     
  15. SomeRandomIdiot

    SomeRandomIdiot New Member

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    Jan 7, 2016
    Have you switched the feed connector for both DVRs?
     
  16. BiohazrD

    BiohazrD New Member

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    Jan 12, 2016
    I'm not entirely sure what you mean. I've literally removed all splutters. Moved a tv into the room where the ONT is located. And plugged everything in there with a 3 foot cable. Direct from the ONT to the TiVo, known good coax patch cable and no wall runs or splitters.
     
  17. bwhitney

    bwhitney Member

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    Apr 12, 2009
    Kearneysvill...
    I did more testing today with the development version of what was going to be RC21, and the Signal Level issue remain, at least on Roamios, not on HD, and I don't currently have a Bolt or Premiere.

    I have heard second hand, so take for what it is worth, Tivo is focusing on the HDMI problems they created with the Winter 2015 release, while they try to figure out what they did to break the signal problem on Restarts. Right now, with the software they have loaded on my Roamio, b-client-quattro-3.7.2015.12.22-1751-USA-6-848 with some patches they have pushed, all 6 tuners are 96-100%, SNR in the 38-41% range and have a very few Correctable RS errors and no Uncorrectable RS errors, but only with a Power Cycle. I can take my almost perfect Roamio and break all channels by doing a simple Help->Restart. Power Cycling returns operation to normal.

    Prior to the beta software I am running, the only way I could get channels was by inserting 17.5 db of attenuation, that after one of the patches, is now 13 db of attenuation. Before anyone asks, yes, reducing RF signal Level does help the Digital SNR under these conditions to a certain point.

    BiohazrD, I bet if you add enough attenuation say 12 to 18 db, you can get your Tivo to work, not perfect, but usable until Tivo can get a proper fix.

    Brad
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2016
  18. SomeRandomIdiot

    SomeRandomIdiot New Member

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    Jan 7, 2016
    RG6 comes out of the splitter and runs to the FiOS DVR.

    Another RG6 comes out the splitter and runs to the TiVo unit.

    You say you do not get the pixelation with the FiOS DVR

    Unplug the RG6 from the FiOS DVR - plug into TiVo.

    Unplug the RG6 from TiVo - plug into FiOS DVR.

    Does the macroblocking continue on TiVo and not FiOS DVR.

    BTW, are you checking same channel at the same time when you say it does not happen on the FiOS DVR, correct?
     
  19. BobCamp1

    BobCamp1 Well-Known Member

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    May 15, 2002
    That's because the FIOS DVR is superior hardware. To use a Tivo, your signal has to be in pristine condition. This isn't new, this has been a problem for several years now.

    To be fair, Verizon FIOS should be able to provide you a pristine signal. Keep at it, but when you hit day 29 of the 30-day return window, return the Tivo. Problems like this can take a very long time to fix, and I'm not sure you want to be stuck with a box that doesn't work for you.
     
  20. fcfc2

    fcfc2 Well-Known Member

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    Feb 19, 2015
    Hi Bob,
    I had to laugh when I read "the FIOS DVR is superior hardware." It may be working better for the OP at this point because of a variety of reasons, including the apparent recently introduced software bug on the Tivo. I personally am on Fios in Florida and have been for a couple years, using a Roamio Plus and a couple minis and so far I have never had any problem with the signal strength. I also frequent the DSL Reports Verizon Fios forums daily and from what I see there, the new VMS system similar to Tivo system has a litany of software issues and has since it's introduction.
    This is not to say that when someone has problems with their Tivo, it is not infuriating, but it might simply be a defective unit. Not everyone on Fios is having this issue or other problems with the signal. Some problems on Verizon are often reported resolved with an ONT replacement, and rarely with issues further up line.
     

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