Northland Cable says no CableCARDs, what do I do?

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by ScratchFury, Sep 27, 2007.

  1. ScratchFury

    ScratchFury New Member

    Feb 12, 2005
    I'm moving to Clemson, SC, and the cable operator there for the most part is Northland Cable. I called them, and they said they don't support CableCARDs. Am I SOL or is there something I can say about the FCC or Tivo or whatnot? Anyone else have Northland? Thanks for replies.
  2. ScratchFury

    ScratchFury New Member

    Feb 12, 2005
    Bleh... found my answer. They've been granted a waiver according to this page:

    They are a part of the "Rural ATM Digital Providers Group and IPTV Operators Group." Now I have to figure out if keeping a Series3 with Lifetime service with no CableCARDs is worth it or not. Double bleh.
  3. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2006
    You may want to try digital OTA reception in the are you are moving to - you may be pleasantly surprised at what you can tune over the air... I'm 60 miles SE of broadcast towers and picking up all the HD locals with a cheap indoor amplified UHF antenna in the garage pointing in the right direction. It's worth spending $20-30 on an antenna to try it out if you haven't already.
  4. old64mb

    old64mb New Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    And if the OTA option doesn't work, there's always QAM for the broadcast stations (and quite possibly more digital stuff) if they do have HD - and if they don't, I'd bet good money their analog service may not be pretty to watch but will preserve most of the functionality of your S3, and is a good option even if you're able to get OTA HD.
  5. ScratchFury

    ScratchFury New Member

    Feb 12, 2005
    Is QAM what allows me to get HD cable channels even when the CableCARDs aren't in the box?
  6. bicker

    bicker bUU

    Nov 9, 2003
    Keep in mind that while most large cable companies provide local broadcast channels in HD via in-the-clear QAM, the requirement to do so does not take effect until February 2009, so Northland may not.
  7. MScottC

    MScottC Well-Known Member

    Sep 11, 2004
    QAM is the method that most cable systems use to carry TV channels through their cables. 8SVB is the "Over the Air" equivalent. Both of them allow for encoding (also encrypting) multiple program streams onto one channel. That is why they use the channel numbering system of xx.yy, where the x is the old standard channels we are used to, and the y is the subchannel. If you know the QAM assignment of a program source you can "dial in" its channel and subchannel assignment and view that channel on any TV equipped with a QAM/8SVB (ATSC) tuner or TiVo S3/HD, and view it assuming it is not encrypted. Cable systems take this one step further however, and assign a virtual channel number to each QAM program source and they use that channel number in their program guide data, and in their cableboxes. They do NOT publish the QAM assignments, they publish the virtual channel numbers. TiVo on its own, at the moment, has no way of equating QAM and virtual channel numbers, so it can not use the guide data to tune in and record the shows you desire. The CableCard facilitiates the translation between QAM and virtual channel numbers from information passed on from the cablesystem and creates that link that allows TiVo to record your shows based on the published guide data. The CableCard also facilitates the all important decrypting of the encrypted channels, also based on information passed on from the cablesystem's headend.

    So without cablecards, TiVo is, at this point, effectively useless, with regards to digital channels from your cablesystem. Search other posts about "manual channel mapping."
  8. ScratchFury

    ScratchFury New Member

    Feb 12, 2005
    I always wondered why people were always talking about manual channel mapping. Now I know. Thank you for the info.
  9. bnmintx

    bnmintx New Member

    Jun 4, 2006
    Updating this thread with new information: I just moved to the Clemson area and Northland Cable does support Cable Cards for Tivo (M-Cards).

    With that said, my installer spent almost 3 hours yesterday and was not successful at getting the card to activate/pair. They have to order a new card.

  10. ScratchFury

    ScratchFury New Member

    Feb 12, 2005
    Which model of Tivo do you have?

    I moved to Anderson so I could get better cable and internet through Charter. Even after almost 3 years of having the Tivo, some of the techs get thrown for a loop with the Tivo Series 3. I can only imagine what the Northland techs are like.
  11. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

    Jan 31, 2002

    If they would just learn to always bring a spare card, they wouldn't waste so much time.

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