Problem with Comcast CC after 1 year with Series 3

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by HamDoc, Sep 29, 2007.

  1. HamDoc

    HamDoc New Member

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    Sep 22, 2006
    Anyone have any ideas? I have had a Series 3 for almost a year hooked up via HDMI to my TV. I have had the same Motorola S cards plugged in for the same amount of time. I still am running software 8.3.1. About 3 weeks ago, I began noticing some "tearing" or massive pixelation/block issues on 2 HD channels. It has now spread to 2 other HD channels. They are not on the same tier of service thru Comcast(not part of a Showtime Block Tier or anything).

    This past week I had the Tivo set to record Heroes on NBCHD. All of our local HD comes thru Comcast, not thru OTA antenna. It did not record at all. There were no scheduling conflicts. On Thursday, it recorded 24 minutes of Ugly Betty from ABCHD. I was home both nights. There were no power outtages. It just stopped recording. I was flipping thru channels today and noticed that none of my local channels were getting any signal. I recieved the message that there was no signal on Basic Cable In. I called the ever helpful Comcast(sarcasm implied) who said they could do nothing with cable cards and would have to send a tech out. I know this is false as they have re-hit my cards when I had a similar problem with the local channels before of no signal. I should say that I have no problems on my Comcast cable box in the bedroom with any of these channels, but I do on both cable cards.

    I decided to call Tivo just in case. While I was on hold, the tearing stopped and the local signals returned for about 3 minutes. They then went away. While they were clear, the signal strength was 100. My signal strength is now between 75-77 on the tearing channels with alternating no signal. Signal strength is, of course, zero on the local channels.

    The Tivo rep goes thru the diagnostics and says the cards are paired correctly. He says that I only need to have the cable company re-hit each of the cable cards. We go 3way, and Comcast supposedly rehits both cards. They told me it might take 20 minutes; however, it was instantaneous before. We got off the phone with Comcast, and I asked the Tivo tech what to do should this not work. He kept telling me all I could do was call Comcast again. I asked him if repeated re-hitting didn't work what to do, and he tells me all I can do is call them back and do a 3 way again for the tech to ask them to re-hit. I have had them re hit 3 x now. I do not see a point in calling Tivo for them only to call and ask Comcast to do it a forth time. Any suggestions you all have would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    DocT
     
  2. ajwees41

    ajwees41 Well-Known Member

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    May 7, 2006
    Omaha,NE

    Have you had the signals checked by a tech at the house?
     
  3. HamDoc

    HamDoc New Member

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    Sep 22, 2006
    THey are set to come Monday. I just hope they have learned more about Tivo's and Cable Cards since they initially installed them 1 year ago. I just wonder why this has only been a problem for 1-3 weeks. Ah well
     
  4. ajwees41

    ajwees41 Well-Known Member

    3,004
    147
    May 7, 2006
    Omaha,NE

    I don't think it will be the cable cards, but a signal issue.
     
  5. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

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    Oct 17, 2003
    Pittsburgh
    I just went thru the exact same problem and found it to be a connection to a coax splitter that had been dislodged. Tightened it up and straightened out the cable and all is fine.
     
  6. Pab Sungenis

    Pab Sungenis Member

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    Apr 13, 2002
    Vineland, NJ
    I was having signal drop-outs and cable modem problems. They sent out a tech. He replaced our master splitter downstairs, saying that was the problem. Then he put a filter on the cable modem, saying the problem was it was putting out too strong a return signal. Then he went outside for a while, and came back in and said "turns out the real problem was in the wire running to your house."

    Of course, we still had to pay for the new splitter and filter. Argh.
     
  7. Arcady

    Arcady Stargate Fan

    3,959
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    Oct 14, 2004
    Philadelphia...
    Why would you have to pay for cable company equipment?
     
  8. HamDoc

    HamDoc New Member

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    Sep 22, 2006
    If it were the signal, why would the Comcast Motorola box be working fine?
     
  9. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    Nov 9, 2003
    Florida
    Good question.
     
  10. tomryan

    tomryan New Member

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    Sep 9, 2006
    because all things aren't equal.. in this case, the cable runs inside your house.

    simply put

    if the signal to your house was fine before and both runs inside were ok, but the one to your tivo lost more signal then the one to the motorola, but this loss didn't matter because the signal coming in was ok, everything would be ok..

    then something happens (a coupling comes loose, a splitter dies, the signal to the house weakens, etc, whatever), the loss to the tivo becomes too drastic and bam.. pixelation.

    I have signal level differences of 10 on each of the two outlets in my house with s3s on them.

    I needed an amp to get one of them working.
     
  11. drdarren

    drdarren New Member

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    May 15, 2004
    Boca Raton, FL
    i was getting a grey screen intermittantly on some hd stations. i had comcast just come out and check and my signal was weak so they put in a stronger signal booster. once he put in a booster the signal was much stronger. he said that the tivo units may require stronger signals. so sounds the same as your problem so it should be fixed when they come out.
     
  12. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    Nov 9, 2003
    Florida
    So swap where the two DVRs are. If you're still having problems on the TiVo and not with the Comcast Motorola box, that gives you your answer.
     
  13. GoHokies!

    GoHokies! O2->CO2 Converter

    2,657
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    Sep 21, 2005
    KFME
    Not necessarily - from my readings here it seems to me that the Tivos are not very tolerant of a signal that is too strong or too weak. The tech that comes out should be able to tell which is the problem and then use either an amplifier or an attenuator to get the signal back where it's supposed to be.
     
  14. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    Nov 9, 2003
    Florida
    That's still an answer, and tracks back to some of our earlier discussions about Designing for Robustness. More importantly, it keeps the OP from wasting time, money and effort trying to find a hardware failure in the cables themselves.
     
  15. tomryan

    tomryan New Member

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    Sep 9, 2006
    in an ideal world, it would cause comcast/time warner/verizon/etc to provide a consistent signal..

    of course, then there's the inside plant..

    fwiw,

    another thing to check (pandora's box here), is whether there's a new customer nearby using a (what used to be called) T3 (not a data line, but a device to send a video signal upstream for rebroadcast). Another issue I had was signal issues with CBSHD.

    according to the comcast tech, he was getting a signal reading from a church's upstream signal fluctuating in on the cbshd signal.

    is this something for the x-files? who knows, but perhaps it could be helpful to some.
     
  16. bicker

    bicker bUU

    10,671
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    Nov 9, 2003
    Florida
    No, in an ideal world, TiVo would be as robust as allegedly lesser DVRs.
     
  17. HamDoc

    HamDoc New Member

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    Sep 22, 2006
    Well, I had two different problems, lol.
    1. There was a problem outside the home in which they had to replace a splitter which helped with non OTA channels provided thru my cable company.
    2. I have been using a surge supressor with cable inputs. It has been workind fine since 11/06. I guess as Comcast has added more channels over the summer the signal strength degraded on teh local channels over cable. When I plugged cable directly into the tivo, the channels came back. Now, hopefully, I won't get struck by lightnight and have everythign fried.

    Thanks for all the advice!!!

    HamDoc
     

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