Noobie QAM question

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by troasti, Dec 16, 2008.

  1. troasti

    troasti Member

    67
    1
    Nov 12, 2008

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    Hi
    I just got my new Series 3 HD tivo in and had a question about QAM channels. I am using basic cable channels 2-20 (filtered by the cable company on the pole) and OTA roof antenna. I did a channel scan and my OTA and Basic cable channels seems to come in great. I don't see any QAM channels? I tried tuning in 901,902,903,904,905 but nothing. I have Charter for cable and I'm in western mass. Maybe my QAM channels are filtered? How do I know where to look for them? Thanks!
     
  2. jeepguy_1980

    jeepguy_1980 Unregistered User

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    Mar 1, 2008
    Newport...
    They shouldn't be filtered out, but they're not going to be mapped to 901, 902, etc...

    They'll probably have either their OTA designation (i.e. 5-1, 10-1, etc...) or random high numbers lik 87-1 or so.
     
  3. troasti

    troasti Member

    67
    1
    Nov 12, 2008
    how do i find them?
     
  4. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

    25,636
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    Apr 9, 2001
    sunnyvale
    You need cablecards to use the Tivo 'as designed'. See the zillion threads about (the lack of) QAM remapping.

    If your channel scan found the channels, you'll see them in the channel list, and you'll have to just up-channel to get to them or type in the #s.. (use the -> key as the dash)
     
  5. troasti

    troasti Member

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    Nov 12, 2008

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    I understand the need for cable cards for guide mapping for QAM. I don't want to pay for these because I want to keep my cable bill low which is the reason I got the tivo in the first place otherwise I probably would have gotten the cable's HD DVR. Basic cable and OTA gives me what I need. The channel search didn't give me any QAM stations as far as I know which is not really a big deal since my antenna gives me many HD stations including all the networks. I was just curious why I wasn't seeing any QAM stations. I did a full channel scan and didn't see them..Is is possible charter doesn't provide them in my area? Is there anyway to get a listing of where I "should see them"
     
  6. pldoolittle

    pldoolittle Tivo'ing since 2001

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    May 2, 2002
    I'm a comcast user in Atl and in the same boat for a different (and temporary) reason. That said, I still want to understand the process so I'll join your thread with my question in hopes we can both get answers. If it turns out that we have a different problem, please excuse the intrusion.

    Background
    My situation: We have two S2 tivos and have for years, so I'm not a Tivo newb. We have one HD TV (component = Yes, 720P = yes, 1080x = ??) and no HD tuner so I am an HD newb. I've gotten my wife an HD XL for Christmas to replace the S2 on the HD TV and wish to have it configured, guide loaded, CC installed and operation, and re-boxed for Christmas. I'm playing with it now (CC install is 4 days away) to get a handle on the changes between S2 and HD-XL.


    Question: My HD XL is installed and guide data downloaded. I have no cable card installed, but did select "Installing CC later" on setup. I get channels 2-999. 2-99 are std def, 100-799 are mixed content, and 800-899 are clearly labeled HD (as in CNNHD). Menus are 720P, but all channels come through as std def (480i). Guide data is about 60% accurate above #100. My son, however gets HD channels find on his off the shelf HD TV with integrated tuner. Am I doing something wrong? If I manually tune to an known HD channel (i.e. 108, 801), should I not get a HD picture?

    Also can someone point me to a site/post that explains the relationship between comcast mapping and sub-channel mapping? i.e. why does his TV have 108-1, 108-2, 108-6, while my Tivo HD only has 108.
     
  7. troasti

    troasti Member

    67
    1
    Nov 12, 2008
    Actually I think I can answer part of your question since I had the same issue when i set it up. Its under settings > Video I believe. Its defaulted to 480i and you have to go in and set it up as 1080i hybrid or 720p Hybrid. I can tell you exactly where it is tonight when i get home if you can't figure it out.
     
  8. pldoolittle

    pldoolittle Tivo'ing since 2001

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    May 2, 2002
    Thanks. I saw/did that, and still have the same issue. Menus are at 720p, new user videos are at 720p, channels are at 420i. Oddly, they show up in the guide info as (HD, CC, R) and then after a second they change to (CC, R, 420i). For channels that should definitely be HD. In fact, IIRC the whole 801-899 range is HD on comcast. Which raises an interesting question. Jeepguy said;

    So why aren't my channels (no CCard) showing up with their OTA designations? and conversely, if they are mapped to "single" channels, why do I need a cablecard at all?

    Sorry for the noob Q's, but I'm an HD noob...
     
  9. jeepguy_1980

    jeepguy_1980 Unregistered User

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    Mar 1, 2008
    Newport...
    I didn't say the would show up with the OTA designations (or on the same channel number). I just said they might.

    You should see every digital channel as a QAM channel when you do a channel scan. Then you have to find which ones you actually get, by tunning the TiVo to them and seeing if the channel actually comes in. That's probably the worst thing about the lack of QAM mapping is having to sift through 100's of channels to find the 5 or 6 that actually come in. It's funny that my Vizio TV will automatically ignore all of the channels I don't get and without cablecards, the TiVo has to be manually told which channels I don't get.
     
  10. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Well-Known Member

    2,014
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    May 10, 1999
    It's kind of surprising that you are getting picture on any channels above 100 at all. I think most of us had older software at the time of our channel setups/cablecard installs & Tivo's new software works somewhat differently. I think that you telling it that you are getting cablecards later but not actually having a card puts it in a partially working state where it has some randomly correct mappings to actual channels. But it won't let you tune directly to an actual QAM physical channel designation like "113-3" just like it won't let you after cablecards installed. In order to use the channel scan, most likely you have to run setup again & tell it you don't have cablecards and aren't going to install them later (rerun setup to put them in later). This should get you a lineup that only contains something like channels 2-99. Then you have to go into the channel setup and run a manual channel scan. This should pick up some digital channels, and you will be able to tune to the ones that are unencrypted, the rest you will get grey/black screen. The channels should be accessible with either PSIP mapped stuff like "7-1" (matching OTA), or on some random high actual physical cable channel like "86-1" or "113-1".

    In cablecard mode you can't use the ->| key as the "-", it only allows you the 3 digit/4 digit entry, and can't really access unencrypted QAM unless the system semi-randomly has a correct mapping between the cable company's 3 digit channel number and the physical tuning information.

    But in the long run you will want to get cablecards unless you want to do all recordings as manual time + channel # which somewhat defeats a lot of the point of Tivo in a first place. Or you need to hunt around for a hack to get guide data to work with these.
     
  11. troasti

    troasti Member

    67
    1
    Nov 12, 2008
    I spent the time to manually go through with all the channels and this is what i came up with. Charter Springfield,MA area:

    86.1 CBS Hartford HD
    86.2 CBS weather LD
    86.3 CBS Spfld LD

    88.9 – on demand
    89.2 – CSN HD
    90.1 – Fox 6 Spfld HD
    90.3 – NBC 22 Spfld HD

    102.1 PBS Spfld WGBY HD
    102.2 – FOX Hartford 61 HD
    102.3 – PBS Spfld WGBY
    102.5 PBS Spfld WGBY
    102.6 PBS Spfld WGBY
    103.3 NESN HD

    If anyone else from the area has found more please let me know.
     
  12. mgchan

    mgchan New Member

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    Dec 4, 2005
    I have a number of channels that can be picked up by my TV (Samsung LN-A330), but are not picked up by TiVo HD when I scan channels. For example, I can get 89-411 (KCAL HD) and 89-412 (CBS HD), but 4-1 (NBCHD) and 7-1 (ABC HD) which I can see on my TV without any cable box, are not even detected by TiVo. Is this a signal strength issue? The channels look pretty clear on the TV.
     
  13. ajwees41

    ajwees41 Well-Known Member

    3,083
    165
    May 7, 2006
    Omaha,NE
    you don't want to pay to rent the cards, but you bought the tivo which costs more then the cards to rent.
     
  14. a68oliver

    a68oliver Member

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    Jul 15, 2000
    Crawfordsvil...
    I believe the Tivo is somewhat fussy about the PSIP info passed through by the cable company. My Tivo HD did not find all the channels my Samsung TV found. Never could figure out why.

    However, now Comcast has been doing some work on the PSIP tables and now Tivo finds all of the unencrypted QAM just fine.
     
  15. vstone

    vstone Active Member

    1,250
    1
    May 11, 2002
    Martinsville...
    Here in Southside Virginia, My Tivo picks up about ten channel "0"'s. As of last week, the local CBS, which used to be at 104.1 is now at 1-1 on my clear QAM tuner TV. Press the up channel button and you get ABC, also identified at 1-1. Press the Up channel button again you get MyNetwork on 1-2 (locally its the second channel of the CBS digital freq). Press the Up channel button again and you get th elocal FOX HD signal, also identified as 1-2. They just don't have a clue.

    A friend has a TV that can still tune to CBS at 104.1, but still display CBS as 1-1.

    In fairness to the manufacturers, including Tivo, its hard to test this stuff in the real world, when the real world is so screwed up. I only wish that Tivo would admit that they aren't going near this until the cable compa nies get their stuff together.
     

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