TV is fuzzy.... Help

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by dslider, Jan 3, 2006.

  1. Jan 3, 2006 #1 of 11

    dslider Newbie- Help Me

    Dec 17, 2005


    I just got my Tivo and got it set up... but it looks fuzzy (when watching live tv from the TIVO)... when I switch back to regular TV it is much clearer.... why is this?

    I dont have a cable box... I have a splitter and one goes directly to the Tivo and the other directly to the TV....

    I havent got anything recorded yet so I dont know if that is going to be fuzzy also but I am assuming it will be..

    How can I fix it?

    Should I get better cables then the ones that came with the Tivo?
  2. Jan 3, 2006 #2 of 11

    psimon Paul

    Nov 28, 2005
    When you watch TV and are using the TiVO, you are actually watching recorded programming! That is why, for example, you can decide 20 minutes into a program to start recording it, and it will save the program from the beginning, or whenever you had turned to that channel. The TiVO is ALWAYS recording what you are watching. The issue is whether you SAVE the program for future use.

    The reduction in clarity (which you will notice changes based on your default recording quality) is due to the compression /decompression of the data from the hard disk. The greater the compression, the greater the loss in detail and the fuzzier it will look. The less the compression you use, the less detail is lost, but the more hard drive is used! You have to make a compromise somewhere!

    Hope that helps....

    ---Paul in Southern NJ
  3. Jan 3, 2006 #3 of 11

    simonalope New Member

    Jun 2, 2004
    TiVo's internal tuner is more sensitive to cable signal quality than most, I hear, and many people around here report good results after adding a cable signal amplifier upstream of the TiVo. The fact that you are already using a splitter makes it likely the signal reaching your TiVo isn't very strong - buy an amp from a store with a good return policy (such as RadioShack) and see if it helps.
  4. Jan 3, 2006 #4 of 11

    dslider Newbie- Help Me

    Dec 17, 2005
    Thanks for the advise
  5. Jan 3, 2006 #5 of 11

    mjkboston New Member

    Jan 3, 2006


    I just got a new Series 2 and have the same problem with the configuration you have.

    No cable box, 2-way splitter, one to TV one to TiVo. TiVo back to TV using sVideo and/or RCA video output. TV is fine video quality, menus from TiVo on TV look stunning. LiveTV from TiVo looks bad. I tried called TiVo tech support. After trying a bunch of things I now have cable going into TiVo and using RF/coax to go back to TV (not the way I want things set up) but the video quality on live TV going through the TiVo is as good as it was before.

    I told the customer service rep (nicely) that if the video coming out of the sVideo/RCA video out was crappy then I thought my TiVo was not working properly and should be replaced (BTW I bought a refurbed unit from TiVo to save $50, maybe a mistake). If the video-out was crappy then anything I would want to copy to a VCR or DV camcorder or to my PC would be crappy.

    I was escallated to a CSI (some more senior support engineer) who basically told me that he thought that it was a cable signal problem. He claimed that the sVideo/RCA output was less forgiving to a poor signal. I'm pretty technical and know how graphics/video systems work an this seems a little suspect to me but I have given in so far and just ordered an Electroline EDA 2400 XSP on Ebay
    from CableTV Amps (search Electroline splitter on eBay since this dang text editor won't let me even spell out a url!). This is the amplifier from the same company that Comcast uses.

    I have 4 cable runs coming off of a RadioShack splitter right now where the cable comes into the house and the TiVo is as the end of the longest run with several splitters along the way so I figure for $60 this can't hurt. I will also probably run a new line from the amplifier directly to the TiVo. I also have a cable modem coming off of the splitter and it works fine - I don't want to mess that up.

    Has anyone else experienced this discrpency of video quality when using a coax connection vs. s-video/rca video output? Does the CSI's explanation make sense. Aren't the video out ports on a different DAC then the coax?

    I would really like to use my old configuration.

    Also, any recommendations on the best cable to use to run from the amp to the TiVo? It is about 50 ft.


  6. Jan 4, 2006 #6 of 11

    Rockmoore802 New Member

    Jan 1, 2006
    8 Miles...
    I have a question after reading this thread.

    I have a cable box and just got a new plasma tv. I have adjusted the picture but I'm still not happy with the results. Even though I have a digital cable box, would the picture quality improve with the use of a signal amplifier.

    For reference:
    I have a series 2, 80 hour Tivo unit
    I come in from cable to the box out via S video to tivo then I use both outputs on Tivo. One goes to the tv and the other goes to my DVD recorder.

    What is the best confoguration to use- cable box, Tivo, DVD recorder. My tv is capable of a variety of configurations and as you can tell I'm a noob!

    In addition, I just ordered a cable card so I can watch 1 channel, while recording another.

  7. Jan 4, 2006 #7 of 11

    ddrultramix New Member

    Dec 23, 2005
    Uh! Same. This blows. I have Tivo 2 series 40 hour on a great TV. The cable is connected from my wall, into my cable box, then into my tivo. All recordings and quality are set onto BEST quality and it still sucks. Everything is still so FUZZY. And when you press pause on live TV, it looks like some one vomited on the screen. Seems like were all stuck with this. I even connected the cable just directly to the TIVO (when I didnt need a cable box earlier) and the quality was still identically the same. YUCKY! If i just remove everything and connect the cable directly to my TV the quality is PERFECT. Any ideas?
  8. Jan 6, 2006 #8 of 11

    mjkboston New Member

    Jan 3, 2006
    Just switched from a Radio Shack passive splitter to the Electroline EDA 2400. Broadband Cable Modem works fine (even seems a little faster) and the signal coming out of my S-video/RCA output looks virtually identical to the RF-out feed (which is really good). I also plan to eliminate one splitter on the branch to the TiVo.

    Make sure you use 75 ohm terminators on any of the outputs you are not using. I still need to play with this a bit more but it looks like this amplifier might do the trick. Looks like the TiVo is quite sensitive to the strenght of the signal on the coax coming in.

    For the Electroline, search on Cabletvamps. They were great. I paid $58 + $9.50 for shipping and it was here in 3 days.
  9. MPSmith

    MPSmith Proud 1%'er!

    Feb 15, 2003
    Oddly, I am having this problem for the first time, after more than two years of excellent service with the exact same configuration. Sometimes, I can immediately correct the problem by turning off the TV and turning it back on.

    Why would this be happening?
  10. michael new

    michael new New Member

    Jan 12, 2006
    Im confused, to watch a channel while recording with Tivo I need to run from wall to splitter to Tivo and Tv correct?

    Ive been reading these post for weeks now seeing the same results, maybe Im just being a little critical but Ive already boosted my coax and ran new coax through out the house there are however 1 main splitter for all my outlets but each (2) Tivo's are split again at the Tivo.

    Any suggestions would be great!
  11. KatyKid

    KatyKid New Member

    Feb 12, 2006
    I had the same problem with my Humax and I installed a cable amplifier (about $20 at Wal-Mart or Radio Shack) and it worked. My picture is now very close to as good as the one from the cable going directly to my TV.

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