The MPEG-4 letter from Comcast

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by kupe, Jun 4, 2015.

  1. squiredogs

    squiredogs TiVo'er since 1999

    132
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    Aug 14, 2006

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    I looked around, and we're not on the list to get "upgraded" by comcast yet. Odd, since I'm in South Jersey, within 50 miles of comcast headquarters... Anyway, I guess that buys me a little time.

    Would it be better to wait for the letter from comcast, or just take care of it now? Like, does Tivo give a better upgrade offer if you got informed by comcast, rather than preemptively dealing with the switch?

    If my S3 can still pull in HD locals and tune ESPN, I might keep it for the den/playroom or something. One less comcast hdtv tuner that way.
     
  2. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

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    John's...
    I don't know if they have any current upgrade deals. You'd have to call TiVo to find out.
     
  3. meBigGuy

    meBigGuy New Member

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    Feb 23, 2007
    On 1/13 I noticed my Series 3 had stopped working on some Xfinity channels. Took a while, but I finally figured out it was mpeg4 migration.

    I got the SW upgrade and all seemed OK until I started experiencing freezing on some mpeg4 channels. Not every mpeg4 channel would experience the freeze. For example SYFI played just fine, but previously recorded or live FXXPHD would freeze.

    I determined that rebooting would fix the problem. (it's the only thing that would fix it)

    I determined I could make it freeze by recording 2 mpeg4 channels while playing a stored mpeg4 video. Then, a reboot would fix it. Not just any mpeg4 channel though. Only certain ones had whatever it took to cause the freeze. Some channels must encode mpeg4 with different compression or ref frames, or something. For example FXXPHD, NGWIHD. DXDHDP, FXPHD, DISNHDP, and a handfull of others.

    Wondering if anyone else has been experiencing this? TIVO probably won't be fixing it unless they get enough calls.

    I'll have to say that it hasn't frozen in a few weeks, but that may be because currently there are no shows being recorded on the triggering channels (seasons ended).
     
  4. Sevenfeet

    Sevenfeet Gentle Giant

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    Jun 24, 2000
    Nashville, TN
    And now it all makes sense. For months my elderly Tivo Series 3 OLED was not receiving a lot of the HD digital channels with the exception of the local channels and strangely ESPN. Now I understand why. The MPEG-4 transition happened under my very nose and someone I never found out about it. No notice from Comcast (at least that I remember receiving) and when I called into customer service to complain about my cablecard service no longer working on this machine, nobody had a clue (not surprising for Comcast tech support).

    We have two TVs in our house and the other one has a Tivo HD which still retained programming after the change. That Tivo replaced a Series 3 that died about a year ago and I received the Tivo HD from a friend who had upgraded to Roamio + Minis a while ago. The Tivo Series 3 hadn't been a high priority issue since the Tivo it's attached to is failing and needs to be replaced. it was a top of the line Mitsubishi RPTV 14 years ago but I haven't had budget to replace it yet (hopefully later this year).

    I had recently pulled the Series 3 from active duty and replaced it with another Tivo HD that I got from another friend who upgraded to Bolt. But I discovered in the last few days that this Tivo has a bad Ethernet port and had been sporadically flooding my network (and specifically my wireless router) with bad packet information...almost like a DDOS attack. So I pulled the Tivo HD today. Ironically I had also added a Comcast X1 box to the same TV recently upon a change of service where Comcast basically threw up in the X1 box without a monthly charge.

    The interface is a lot different and I miss some of the DVR control that Tivo offers. The big advantage is being able to record 6 shows at once, something the Roamios can do but the Bolt cannot. Recording 6 shows might be overkill but it's the only way to record all of the major late night comedy talk shows/programs. So I was waiting for a version of the Bolt with 6 tuners before upgrading and augment it with Minis...but now with the rumored merger of Tivo, I'm wondering if we're ever going to see this product.

    I'll call Tivo tomorrow and consider my options. Both old Series 3s were lifetime and I'm still in possession of both. The Tivo HD that is still working is also lifetime.
     
  5. HerronScott

    HerronScott Well-Known Member

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    Staunton, VA

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    It's a shame you didn't take advantage of the Roamio Pro deal for long time TiVo users ($600 which included lifetime). They raised the price $100 a little while ago and they might have even discontinued the deal now but let us know what you find out. I've been very happy with ours which we've had since last November (replaced 2 S3 OLEDs).

    I think they did have a different offer for S3 owners impacted by the MPEG4 transition which was a good deal price-wise but I think it was only for the Roamio Basic (4 tuners).

    Scott
     
  6. blm

    blm New Member

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    Mar 27, 2005
    Just an FYI, I got the letter from Comcast about the MPEG-4 transition yesterday (5/28/16) and I'm in the Seattle area. It says the transition will occur 6/27/16.
     
  7. tluxon

    tluxon Member

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    Feb 28, 2002
    Kirkland, WA
    Ditto. Looks like the Lifetime 2TB TivoHD's have just about had their run.

    Comcast says without upgrading I may lose "many" HD channels. I wonder if that means "not all" and if so, which ones will remain on MPEG-2?
     
  8. westside_guy

    westside_guy Annoyingly ephemeral

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    Mar 13, 2005
    The soggy...
    Not necessarily. I found some info from an earlier round of Comcast transitions that states Tivo HDs with TSNs starting with 652 or 658 can handle the "new" mpeg-4 format from Comcast.

    Which would make sense, at least on at some level, since you can stream mpeg4 to these Tivos without transcoding it.

    My TSN starts with 652, so I'm going to "let it ride" and see what happens in June/July. :D I'd like to avoid buying another Tivo, if I can help it - I've loved my Tivos, but I think we're just about at the end of the era where they're useful.

    Ah, here it is: https://support.tivo.com/articles/Features_Use/Comcast-Transitioning-to-MPEG4-in-Select-Markets
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2016
  9. CraigK

    CraigK (unspecified)

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    Jun 9, 2006
    North of...
    I also got the letter from Comcast for the Seattle area.

    I will have to check and see if our TiVo HDs have the 11.0n software update which added MPEG 4 support. The last time I looked they were still on 11.0m.
     
  10. HerronScott

    HerronScott Well-Known Member

    7,615
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    Jan 1, 2002
    Staunton, VA
    Call TiVo support if your HD is still on 11.0m and ask them to add your TSN to the list to get 11.0n as Comcast is moving to MPEG4 in your area.

    We got 11.0n on our 1 HD even though Comcast hasn't announced any timeframe for moving to MPEG4 here.

    Scott
     
  11. CraigK

    CraigK (unspecified)

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    North of...
    Thanks. It looks like I will have to call them because when I checked today they are still both on 11.0m.
     
  12. westside_guy

    westside_guy Annoyingly ephemeral

    468
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    Mar 13, 2005
    The soggy...
    Does your TSN start with 652 or 658?
     
  13. tluxon

    tluxon Member

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    Feb 28, 2002
    Kirkland, WA
    Thanks. I also just got an email from TiVo Support confirming that my units are mpeg-4 compatible. Whew!
     
  14. typ993

    typ993 New Member

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    Mar 4, 2009
    I'm near Seattle and got the letter, saying the transition would take place by/on June 27th. We just get the Limited Basic channel package (using Netflix/Prime on a Roku box for everything else, since the S3 Netflix ability degraded).

    Can anyone in areas already transitioned by Comcast confirm that local channels remain in MPEG2 or do they transcode those as well?
     
  15. CraigK

    CraigK (unspecified)

    1,282
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    Jun 9, 2006
    North of...
    They are both 652.
     
  16. Jun 1, 2016 #116 of 339
    lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Well-Known Member

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    John's...
    Locals are still MPEG2.
     
  17. Jun 2, 2016 #117 of 339
    typ993

    typ993 New Member

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    Mar 4, 2009
    It will be interesting to see what limited basic channels we retain.

    Coincidentally, got an email from Tivo today stating that "Changes to your XFINITY TV service will not impact your TiVo device." We have a Series 3 HD (648) lifetime and a Tivo Premiere month-to-month, so I guess their review didn't pick up on the Series 3.
     
  18. Jun 2, 2016 #118 of 339
    Wil

    Wil Unknown Member

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    Universally, you think? I'm not down there any more, but earlier this Spring in the Sarasota Florida area I thought I saw mpeg4 on a couple of locals from (then) Verizon.
     
  19. Jun 2, 2016 #119 of 339
    arw01

    arw01 Member

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    Feb 22, 2003
    Spokane WA
    dreaded letter has arrived to the Spokane area.

    Both of my HD are 652 beginning, how sure are we they can handle the MPG4 encoding?

    Will check their firmware tonight to see what version they are on.
     
  20. Jun 2, 2016 #120 of 339
    Wil

    Wil Unknown Member

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    I look at a number of different areas and talk with hobbyists doing experiments. There have been no reported failures of HD models with 11.0n handling mpeg4 channels.
     

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