TiVo and captioning

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by infael, Sep 27, 2007.

  1. infael

    infael New Member

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    Sep 27, 2007
    I switched from Comcast to a smaller provider. Falcon Broadband's DVR machines are decidedly inferior, especially with captioning. I used to be able to change caption color and size as well as make the background transparent.

    Can anyone tell me about Tivo's captioning capabilities?

    TIA

    infael
     
  2. mick66

    mick66 Dirty Burger

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    S1 and S2 Tivos don't have any caption capabilities. Your Tivo just passes the captioning data to your TV so that your TV's captioning can use it. I Don't know about the HD Tivos.
     
  3. phox_mulder

    phox_mulder I get paid 2watch TV

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    Unless you are speaking of a TiVoHD or TiVoS3, they both have caption decode ability, along with the options of changing size and font.
    Not sure on color or transparency though.

    They can decode both traditional closed captioning and Digital Closed Captioning found in HD programs among others.


    phox
     
  4. Bierboy

    Bierboy Seasoned gas passer

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    The digital captions' fonts, colors and backgrounds can be changed.
     
  5. wmcbrine

    wmcbrine Well-Known Mumbler

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    Color: Yes. Transparency: No.
     
  6. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    That is one of the advantages of our Motorola DVR over our TiVo... background transparency on the Closed Captions. (We also like that we can change font, too, with the Motorola DVR.)
     
  7. bmgoodman

    bmgoodman Member

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    Let me tell you of my negative experiences with closed captioning on my S3. If you search for my posts for this year, I'm sure you can find all the details. Let me just summarize by saying that my S3 seems to miss the closed captioning data about half the time, while my Series 2 and my Series 1 probably miss the captioning close to never. And let me be clear, I've recorded the exact same program from the exact same channel on my S3 and my S2 where my S3 has no captions and my S2 does! This is on regular analog cable channels (no HD, no cable box, same source coaxial cable with splitter), and it has been true on broadcast channels as well as cable-only channels like USA and TNT. So far, it has been the most frustrating thing about the S3.
     
  8. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    You experience sounds a little like mine. This is a problem that TiVo does know about (confirmed by a TiVo rep, via PMs here on TCF), but so far they have provided no indication that they plan to do anything to remedy it.

    It only affects SD channels where the cable company inserts commercials (so generally broadcast channels are NOT affected). Whenever the program returns from a cable company inserted commercial break, the Closed Captions are gone. This is very consistent. However, since so few people complain about it, apparently TiVo doesn't have much rationale for researching and addressing the problem.

    If you're experiencing this, keep very close tabs on it and make a log for a few weeks, noting each instance, what channel, and how long into the program the Closed Captions vanished. Then submit the complaint through various channels. If enough people express disappointment, TiVo may take action.

    See update on this, below (#14).
     
  9. infael

    infael New Member

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    Sep 27, 2007
    Falcon Broadband doesn't use those Motorola DVRs. They said it's incompatible with their system. I'm stuck with FBB til Jan 09, after which I'll most likely go back to Comcast and their Motorola DVRs.

    After reading the above posts re Tivo captions, I think I will pass on getting a Tivo.
     
  10. bmgoodman

    bmgoodman Member

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    Northern...
    I am having the captions problems even on regular broadcast channels (CBS, NBC, ABC, etc.), and my captions are missing from the beginning. I'm wondering if I just have a problem with MY particular S3, because I've not seen others reporting this issue. (Or maybe few folks use captions? Or maybe few have an S2 and S3 to be able to compare?)
     
  11. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    I can assure that we have great Closed Captions service from our TiVo S3 on HD programs, from ABC, CBS, and NBC, so it isn't the case that the S3 is incapable.
     
  12. wmcbrine

    wmcbrine Well-Known Mumbler

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    Is there anyone here who can confirm or refute my speculation that 9.1 brings Tivo-side caption rendering to the S2?
     
  13. astrohip

    astrohip Well-Known Raconteur TCF Club

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    Don't make a decision based on a few incidents. I am a 100% of the time caption user, and have no problems. Believe me, if I did, I would know. I have used captions for years on my S2, my S3 and the cableco SA8300HD. (On the S2, it's merely passed thru to the TV.) I have no problems with either the S2 or S3; the SA8300HD routinely messes up. Almost every screen of captions has a word or two missing letters. The S3 rarely misses any.

    This is no different than the pixellation problem. I have it on a couple channels, but most people don't. It seems there are some people who have caption problems, but most don't.

    I would get one and try it, rather than pass up the best DVR, and the best caption-handling DVR, on the market.

    YMMV.
     
  14. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    I just got a PM confirming that this problem is resolved in 9.1. Yeah!

    Ain't TiVo great? :)
     
  15. ToddNeedsTiVo

    ToddNeedsTiVo Shampoo is not toxic

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    When a Tivo HD is rendering captions (as opposed to the television doing the rendering) for output over component or HDMI, does it normally position the text at the bottom of the screen? Does it also temporarily move the text higher up on the screen if the program itself has text at the bottom of the screen (such as opening credits)?

    My television's decoder does that when captioning from my Series 2. A lot of shows seem to keep showing credits over a few minutes' worth of dialog, and the text being bumped upward annoys my wife but I like it because it lets you see both text items. :D

    Am I to understand that the caption data is not present when sent from the TiVo HD via component or HDMI and thus can only be captioned in the TiVo (and not the television)?
     
  16. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    I was under the impression that the captioner has control over where captions will display; that it is not something that the decoder has much to do with. I've noted that when watching programs on my TiVo versus my Motorola 3416, the captions are positioned in the same way.

    Regarding HDMI: With digital outputs, captions are supposed to be decoded in the box, not at the display device. The TiVo supports caption decoding, so with a TiVo you've got no problem. The captions are merged into the digital video stream, and are essentially open captions from that point forward. With analog outputs, the encoded captions are passed-along, so you can decode them at the display device is you wish.
     
  17. trainman

    trainman Nice to see you

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    Sherman...
    You are absolutely correct -- the position of the captions is controlled by the captioner.

    If you ever see captions covering on-screen text, it's usually because the captioner was working from a not-quite-finished copy of the tape of the show -- although if it's on live programming, it's usually a sign that there's too much on-screen text (hey, you gotta put the captions somewhere).
     
  18. Mordred

    Mordred New Member

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    This appears to be what I'm seeing and it's extremely annoying. I would rather have my TV doing the CCs than the Tivo. At least they should just pass them through for me. There doesn't appear to be any direct way to turn on the captions on the Tivo without going into the menu first which is extremely annoying.
     
  19. bicker

    bicker bUU

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    Closed Caption control is on the info panel. Right arrow once while watching something, and the down arrow twice.
     
  20. ToddNeedsTiVo

    ToddNeedsTiVo Shampoo is not toxic

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    After nearly a month with my TiVo HD, I'm mostly satisfied with the operation of its captions. Mine's going through HDMI.

    It drops a few characters every now and then, but so did my LG HDTV when I was using it directly for OTA stuff.

    Did we decide if captions are rendered TiVo-side for component connections, too? Haven't had a need to use component yet.
     

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