New TiVo User Questions about CableCards/Provider

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by Shave Jacket, Jan 28, 2019.

  1. Jan 28, 2019 #1 of 150
    Shave Jacket

    Shave Jacket Member

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    Hello All,
    I'm new to the forum and I'm hoping this is the right place to ask this question, if it's not then Mods please feel free to move it. I have recently moved and I'm switching to a TiVo setup in my new house. I'm buying a used Bolt+ 6 tuner 3TB with VOX remote as well as 2 minis. We will be using Spectrum in the new house for internet (400 Mbps) and I have the option of getting a cable card from them. My only other options for tv in the area are all dish services (Directv, Dish, or AT&T Uverse which requires their crappy internet which is what we had at our old house).

    On the spectrum website for my area I have the option of a Motorola Cable Card or a SA/Cisco Cable card. Does it make a real difference which one I pick?

    I've read some good and more bad about Spectrum cablecards on this forum so I'm a little hesitant that i'll be able to get everything working properly. But is there any other real option without adding a dish? I'm assuming I can't get cable cards from those other companies without first adding their dish. Is that a correct assumption?

    Finally I've read a whole bunch about setups and I'm not exactly sure how it will work but will the internet modem that Spectrum installs need to be located in the same place as the Bolt+? I'd really like my modem to be where my work desktop PC is so that i can have a wired connection. Unfortunately my PC and my main TV are on different floors and thus the modem will only be able to be located at one or the other. Just curious exactly how that could work.

    Thanks in Advance for any information,
    Frank
     
  2. Jan 28, 2019 #2 of 150
    dlfl

    dlfl Cranky old novice

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    First you should state your location as answers to your questions depend on that. Other forum members will then be able to give you better info.

    I've never heard of a location where EITHER a Motorola or Cisco CableCARD will work.

    Chances are your will need both a CableCARD and a Tuning Adapter (TA) to get all your channels and both will have to be EITHER Motorola or Cisco models. You should be able to ask Spectrum support what you need but unfortunately many times they can't give you a straight answer as most tech support people are clueless about TiVo-related issues such as this.

    Regarding your network issues, I suspect MOCA is in your future, but I will leave that topic to others on this forum who are more expert in that area.
     
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  3. Jan 28, 2019 #3 of 150
    Shave Jacket

    Shave Jacket Member

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    Sorry for leaving that info out. I'm in Buford Georgia 30518.

    I'm not entirely certain they will give me both options of cablecard, but when I search for Cable cards under 30518 it shows me both cards. I will call later today to clarify. I just wanted to have some insight on which one to pick if there were an actual option that I had to pick.

    I've read that a TA will likely be a requirement and I'm ok with that as long as I can get everything working.
    Thanks for the reply
     
  4. Jan 28, 2019 #4 of 150
    fcfc2

    fcfc2 Well-Known Member

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    First thing to do is make sure your Tivos have all be transfered and activated to your Tivo account. Create an account first of course. Do order your cablecard and I believe a TA/ tuning adapter with most of Spectrum now. You will also need to request a MoCA POE (point of entry) filter to be installed on the input of the first splitter in/on your home, unless you have ethernet run to all of the locations where your Tivos will be used. I think it would be good to have the MoCA filter installed even if you plan to use ethernet as a backup in case you want to try or use MoCA for your connections. You may need other equipment like a MoCA adapter if you cannot get ethernet to your Bolt+.
    Some folks are lucky and get their cc's and TA's working right away...others struggle with varying degrees of aggravation. The gov./FCC is currently back to work so if you haven't gotten your cablecard/TA up and working within a few days, I highly recommend you file a complaint with the FCC which can be done online, Submit a request – FCC Complaints
    You don't need to write a book, just give a brief description of the failed attempts or inability of Spectrum to get your cable care working properly.
    Besides creating your Tivo account, I would do a clear and delete on all your Tivos before you do anything else and then proceed with the setup, unless you are confident that the seller did this for you.
    Regarding the location of the Spectrum Gateway and your Bolt+...if they can be co-located that would be great, or if you will be able to get an ethernet cable from the router to the Bolt+ you will be good too. All Tivos need some kind of internet access, and although the Bolt+ may be able to connect wirelessly, it can't support a couple minis with the wifi connection, so, it is Ethernet or MoCA.
    Some Spectrum Gateways have MoCA builtin, but disabled and getting them to enable it is unlikely.
    If you run into account issues you have to use Tivo support, for most everything else, I recommend these forums to help you.
     
  5. Jan 28, 2019 #5 of 150
    Shave Jacket

    Shave Jacket Member

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    @fcfc2 Thank You so much for the reply. I will call Spectrum to set all this up and hopefully things go smoothly. The guy I'm getting the TiVo's from told me he called and de-activated the tivos yesterday and will ship them today. From what I've read a lot depends on the installer that you get (luck of the draw I guess) and how knowledgeable they are about such setups. I will look into getting an ethernet supply to both locations but if it adds too many issues/complications I will just have the modem at my Bolt and run my PC off wifi. The wifi I get from 400 Mbps service has to be light years ahead of the wired 24 Mbps I was getting anyways right ;)

    Thanks again for the help and I'm sure I will have many more questions as I get this all setup.
     
  6. Jan 28, 2019 #6 of 150
    fcfc2

    fcfc2 Well-Known Member

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    Couple of things, likely the seller called Tivo to stop his subscription, but might not have known to tell them he is selling his Tivos and to who...if he did, he should have given you a "reference #" that you use when contacting Tivo to setup your account. If that hasn't been done, ask the seller to update Tivo with your purchase info. and ask him to provide you with that reference number.
    The issue with wifi usually is not related to the speed of your internet connection when feeding a couple minis, this is a local lan issue and I would plan on using MoCA which is builtin to the Bolt+, and all minis. If you are using a Spectrum gateway, you may need to persuade Spectrum to enable it...or get a separate MoCA adapter, about $60, if you cannot get Ethernet to the Bolt+.
     
  7. Jan 29, 2019 #7 of 150
    Shave Jacket

    Shave Jacket Member

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    So the TiVo boxes are now in my name and on their way to me. I've just got to call Spectrum and have them bring a Cablecard and a MoCA filter with them when they come now. Is there a good schematic/instruction manual somewhere that gives me a good idea of what the Spectrum installer should be doing as well as how the system should be setup? I like to be as prepared as possible for when they come.
     
  8. Jan 29, 2019 #8 of 150
    xberk

    xberk Active Member

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    It's not very complicated. No schematic needed.

    A MoCA (Multimedia over Coax) "Point of Entry" filter is designed to prevent MoCA signals from leaving your home through the cable box or radiating out of an antenna, and may improve the performance of a MoCA home network. Install it at the point of entry of your antenna or cable line into your home.

    The rest of the MOCA setup is done with your TIVO during setup.
    https://support.tivo.com/articles/Installation_Setup_Configuration/MoCA-Networking-Help
     
  9. Jan 29, 2019 #9 of 150
    krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    Just to be clear, your new TiVo box is not compatible with any of these other providers ... satellite or AT&T U-verse. Your TiVo will require a cable TV provider that supports CableCARD, so it sounds like Spectrum is your only option.

    As for Spectrum, I need to review what’s been posted, thus far, but the short answer is that you’ll need them to provide you with a CableCARD ... and very likely also a Switched Digital Video (SDV) Tuning Adapter (TA).

    https://support.tivo.com/articles/FAQ/How-Switched-Digital-Video-Impacts-Me-FAQ
     
  10. Jan 29, 2019 #10 of 150
    xberk

    xberk Active Member

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    Your Spectrum cable card is easy to install in your Bolt. It goes underneath. Once you finish the Guided setup you'll need to call Spectrum tech support and they will connect you to the cable guys who will activate and "pair up" your cable card.

    Set up and connect your Unified Entertainment System.

    One part of this that tripped me was during Guided Setup there is a list of Spectrum (and Time Warner and others) cable services. You need to pick yours out of the list. I picked the Spectrum Cable closest to where I lived. That was wrong. You may want to call TIVO support so they can help you pick the right one in Guided setup so you'll get all the right channels.
     
  11. Jan 29, 2019 #11 of 150
    gsutkin

    gsutkin Member

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    When ready to pair your cable card, call the Spectrum folks in Buffalo at
    866-532-2598. DTAs and Cable cards and Spectrum service are all frustrating, but the cable card people are helpful.

    Do others have the same experience as me: when a SDV channel has been on a while, it will consistently lose the signal, and I’ll see a black screen with an error message telling me to press select. Problem is, it sometimes interferes with scheduled recordings on SDV channels, especially recordings on channels currently carrying one of these error messages. My workaround has been to make sure my tuners aren’t tuned to SDVchannels prior to a scheduled recording.

    Gary
    Kansas City
     
  12. Jan 29, 2019 #12 of 150
    krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    No.

    You'll be able to use MoCA -- with a standalone MoCA adapter[1] installed at the modem/gateway location acting as the MoCA/Ethernet bridge -- to provide a wired network connection for the BOLT, which would be connected only via coax and configured as a MoCA client.

    Along with getting the "PoE" MoCA filter properly installed (see here), you'd want the Spectrum installer to ensure that the Mini locations are also connected to the shared coax plant, so that they can be connected via coax and configured as MoCA clients, as well.

    And with the BOLT having MoCA enabled, the Spectrum installer will need to make sure NOT to connect the BOLT to the coax via the Tuning Adapter's TV/STB Out RF pass-through port, as this port severely attenuates MoCA signals. They wiil need to use a 2-way splitter at the BOLT/TA location to connect each device to the coax; and then it is recommended that the TA's unused RF pass-through port be capped with a 75-ohm terminator. Further (though it can wait until issues arise), it is recommended that the Tuning Adapter be protected from MoCA signals by installing a MoCA filter on its coax input port -- distinct from the MoCA filter required at the cable signal PoE (Point-of-Entry) to the home.

    NOTE[1]: There are many MoCA adapters to choose from (see here), but I'd recommend the bonded MoCA 2.0 Motorola MM1000 as the best performance/value option. At $60, it's $20 less than the TiVo Bridge (which is just a rebranded Actiontec ECB6000 standard MoCA 2.0 adapter), has a RF pass-through port (which can be handy), and includes a MoCA filter in the package. The bonded vs standard MoCA 2.0 advantage will only matter if/when you add another bonded MoCA 2.0 node; until then, the MoCA throughput will be capped by the lesser MoCA standards in the BOLT+ (standard MoCA 2.0) and Mini (std MoCA 2.0 for Mini VOX; Mini 1.1 for older, non-VOX Minis).​


    I recommend a quick read of this other current, short thread ...


    ... and a review of its final diagram, as the setup is similar to yours, with the critical exception being that your DVR and modem/gateway won't be co-located, requiring a MoCA adapter at the gateway location.
     
  13. Jan 29, 2019 #13 of 150
    krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    Tweaking the diagram from the referenced thread, you're looking at something similar to the following...

    moca_diagram_01alt2 - tweak for Shave Jacket.png

    Notes:
    • Much depends on what the installer needs to do to provide sufficient signal strength to the modem/gateway and the BOLT+ DVR. If the pictured 2-way/3-way central combo is used, the 3-way could be an unbalanced 3-way to minimize the signal loss enroute to the DVR & TA.

      If the technician installs a powered amplifier in place of the pictured 2-way/3-way splitters, it would ideally be a "designed for MoCA" amp with a built-in MoCA filter. (one example)
    • A 2-way splitter could be used at the modem/MoCA adapter location, instead of connecting the modem/gateway via the MM1000's pass-through port.
    • If the modem/gateway is DOCSIS 3.1, it may require its own prophylactic MoCA filter installed on its coax port to protect it from MoCA signals, owing to DOCSIS 3.1 and MoCA using overlapping frequency ranges. (So, yeah, up to 3 MoCA filters total.) Another solution is the provider installing an entirely separate coax run for the DOCSIS 3.1 modem/gateway to keep it isolated from the in-home coax with an active MoCA network.
    • The optional network switch attached to the BOLT+ is explained in >this post<.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2019
  14. Jan 30, 2019 #14 of 150
    Shave Jacket

    Shave Jacket Member

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    Wow that's a lot of information there guys. I went home and spent the whole night unpacking and checked back in this morning and see I've got a lot to read and digest. I'm sure there will be more questions but for now I've got to do some reading. I'm definitely going to print this page out (is there an easy way to do that?) and have it handy for the installer when he/she comes.

    Thanks for all the input/help!!
     
  15. Jan 30, 2019 #15 of 150
    Sparky1234

    Sparky1234 Well-Known Member

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    Good luck and welcome to the world of TiVo!
     
  16. Jan 30, 2019 #16 of 150
    fcfc2

    fcfc2 Well-Known Member

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    Hi again,
    Although the seller gave Tivo your name, did he provide you with the reference number so you could activate the boxes on your Tivo account when they arrive? That really is the first thing to do after your Tivos arrive.
    Also, don't count too heavily on the installer to have any clue as to what to do. You may get lucky and get someone who is experienced with Tivos/cable cards, but these are YOUR equipment and many installers have the same level of experience as you do. If you get as far as getting the DVR up and working properly with the TA, but having issues with the minis, these forums are the best place to come back for help. Good luck
     
  17. Jan 30, 2019 #17 of 150
    Shave Jacket

    Shave Jacket Member

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    I did get a reference number and I've already called Tivo and created my account. I can see all three boxes when I look under my account, but I will have to pick a subscription service once the boxes arrive. I am going into the process with the assumption that the installer knows nothing about TiVO hence why I need to get caught up on all the reading you guys have provided. I also plan to have the schematics printed out and what not for reference during the troubleshooting I'm sure we will have.
    Thanks!
     
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  18. Feb 1, 2019 #18 of 150
    Shave Jacket

    Shave Jacket Member

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    Ok so I've read through most everything and think I have a fairly decent understanding of the schematics and how things will be hooked up, but I have a few general questions. For reference I did order the MM1000 MoCA adapter you recommended @krkaufman and plan to use that.

    Am I understanding it correctly that that adapter will allow the ethernet to pass over the coax lines in my house? Meaning I can have a wired ethernet connection anywhere I have coax? If so that is very helpful as we have two additional laptops that we would like to sometimes hook up to ethernet when wifi is too slow. Do you have to have some kind of adapter on the output end that converts the coax signal back to a true ethernet interface that I can then use to plug my PC in?

    Also will the minis be able to be moved around the house to different locations as long as there is a coax line present? I know I have coax outputs in pretty much every room and living area in my house. Are those all fully interconnected? We plan to put a projector/movie room in our finished basement and I'm curious if we will be able to use one mini that we move back and forth from the guest room to there when we want to watch sports etc down there.

    Thank again for all the help!
     
  19. Feb 1, 2019 #19 of 150
    V7Goose

    V7Goose OTA ONLY and Loving It!

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    You will need a MoCA adapter to connect any Ethernet device that does not have built-in MoCA capability to your coax/MoCA network, such as a 4-tuner Raomio or just about any computer. I believe that a single MoCA adapter can connect to an Ethernet switch to provide multiple Ethernet ports, but I have never had the need to try that.

    And yes, you should be able to move a Mini to any coax connection in the house - the only caveat is that all the coax runs must be interconnected (they usually are), and all coax splitters or other embedded devices, such as amplifiers or filters, must be MoCA compatible (most are, but no guarantee unless it is actually labeled that way).
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2019
  20. Feb 1, 2019 #20 of 150
    mdavej

    mdavej Well-Known Member

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    Yep. That's precisely how I run ethernet through my entire house.
    Yep, gotta have a Moca adapter at every outlet. That's why I have a house full of these $13 adapters (they were $9 when I bought mine). I can't afford $60 a pop.
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FKTMWDE
    Yep
    You tell us. Usually when a house is built, all the coax is ultimately connected together at a common point, so the odds are high. But you never know if a few dedicated lines got run later or existing lines got disconnected.

    EDIT: Yes, you can connect each adapter to a multi-port switch. I do this in several rooms as well. I no longer even use Tivo at all, but I'm keeping my Moca network in place in order to get wired ethernet in every room.
     

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