HD / SD problem with bizarre setup - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 06-30-2013, 06:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok guys... boy do I have some questions for you all... First off i'd like to say I'm a huge Scott Wilkenson fan, so if he's reading this. Hi!!

Now down to brass tacks.. I have a bizarre set up that my parents hooked up and now that I'm getting older, I"m trying to make sense of it. Ok I'm setting up a small home theater for the first time and need some help. I have comcast for TV service. The connection coming in to my house is on a Co-axial cable.
Question 1: We apparently have xfinity service, so does all cable HD or SD come in to your houses by Co-Axial cable? Are all Co-Axial Cable the same? Can co-axial even carry an HD signal?

The connection into my house leads to my first cable box in my basement. The cable box is SD. No HDMI or HD output possible. From there I have another Coaxial cable connected to another cable box upstairs. This upstairs cable box is HD capable. So basically I'm using the signal from my downstairs box to feed a signal to my upstairs box.. If I disconnect the downstairs box, from the upstairs box... the upstairs box looses all picture and sound. So this brings me to
Question 2: What is the point of this? can't we just get a splitter and split the signal coming into the house, giving a side to each box, instead of daisy chaining it?

Question 3: Does the fact that the ISP cable coming into my house, hits a non HD cable box, before being sent to my upstairs cable box, reduce the HD signal that I'm potentially getting from comcast?

I ask this because my upstairs box while, it says it is HD compliant and has multiple HDMI input and outputs, and the component ports, it can not be switched from 480i. (which looks utterly vomit worthy) The tv we have connected to the upstairs HD box is HD as well. But the cable box seems stuck only at 480i, even though 720 and 1080 are available just not selectable..


Question 4. the box I have upstairs, says it is HD compliant, and capable..but the thing is, is the 'cable in'
port, where the tv signal comes in from, is only co-axial. So this leads back to the first question, is the signal from the box outside, always supposed to be co-axial, even if we have a Xfinity, which is supposed to give us an HD signal?


Question 5. Up stairs, I have my cable box (remember this is daisy chained to my cable box downstairs) and I have another co-axial cable connecting it to the TV. Thinking that this was the reason for the cable box being stuck at 480, I switched out that TV-Cable Box coaxial, with an HDMI. The co-axial connecting the two cable boxes though, remained. The upstairs box was still stuck at 480i.

If it is, Something along the way is bringing the HD signal back to SD quality, and it shows..

Now for a bit of terminology confusion. the term cable box and tv receiver are pretty much the same thing?

BTW this is the box that I have : http://media2.comcast.net/anon.comcastonline2/support/help/faqs/settopboxes/DCX3400_User_Guide.pdf

Guys I thank you for sticking around this long! I hope I haven't sent any of you to the hospital, but I'm trying to get this cleared up before I buy any equipment..I eventually want to get a decent set of speakers, and woofer.
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post #2 of 7 Old 07-01-2013, 06:40 AM
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Originally Posted by lostincyberia View Post

Question 1: We apparently have xfinity service, so does all cable HD or SD come in to your houses by Co-Axial cable? Are all Co-Axial Cable the same? Can co-axial even carry an HD signal?

Yes to all of those. There are different types of coax cable, with some being better than others, but they all serve the same purpose.
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Question 2: What is the point of this? can't we just get a splitter and split the signal coming into the house, giving a side to each box, instead of daisy chaining it?

From your later description of the upstairs HD box, it doesn't sound like a cable set-top box, but rather an AV Receiver. I think you only have one cable box, and it's serving SD to both locations...
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Question 3: Does the fact that the ISP cable coming into my house, hits a non HD cable box, before being sent to my upstairs cable box, reduce the HD signal that I'm potentially getting from comcast?

The boxes are all (normally) independent. I think the output you're seeing from the downstairs box is actually a composite video output.
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I ask this because my upstairs box while, it says it is HD compliant and has multiple HDMI input and outputs, and the component ports, it can not be switched from 480i. (which looks utterly vomit worthy) The tv we have connected to the upstairs HD box is HD as well. But the cable box seems stuck only at 480i, even though 720 and 1080 are available just not selectable..

What's the make/model of the upstairs box. Cable boxes don't have multiple HDMI outputs generally, and never have HDMI inputs.
Quote:
Question 4. the box I have upstairs, says it is HD compliant, and capable..but the thing is, is the 'cable in'
port, where the tv signal comes in from, is only co-axial. So this leads back to the first question, is the signal from the box outside, always supposed to be co-axial, even if we have a Xfinity, which is supposed to give us an HD signal?

Again, yes, coax from the cable company will carry HD signals, which have to be decoded by the set-top box.
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Question 5. Up stairs, I have my cable box (remember this is daisy chained to my cable box downstairs) and I have another co-axial cable connecting it to the TV. Thinking that this was the reason for the cable box being stuck at 480, I switched out that TV-Cable Box coaxial, with an HDMI. The co-axial connecting the two cable boxes though, remained. The upstairs box was still stuck at 480i.

If it is, Something along the way is bringing the HD signal back to SD quality, and it shows..

Still sounds like that upstairs box isn't a cable box. Make and model?
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Now for a bit of terminology confusion. the term cable box and tv receiver are pretty much the same thing?

No. "TV Receiver" is probably "Audio/Video Receiver", which is what non-techies would call their "stereo".

The "Cable box" is the decoder to turn the signal (from coax) from the cable co into something your TV can receive - for HD that means an HDMI output.


Jeff


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post #3 of 7 Old 07-01-2013, 04:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply! I re-edited my post, and posted the link to my upstairs box at the end of the post. here it is again: http://media2.comcast.net/anon.comcastonline2/support/help/faqs/settopboxes/DCX3400_User_Guide.pdf


This is what comcast gave us. So it is the set-top box that will decode the signal that comcast is sending us? This thing has been stuck at 480i since we got it, even when using HDMI cables to the TV
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post #4 of 7 Old 07-01-2013, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by lostincyberia View Post

Thanks for the reply! I re-edited my post, and posted the link to my upstairs box at the end of the post. here it is again: http://media2.comcast.net/anon.comcastonline2/support/help/faqs/settopboxes/DCX3400_User_Guide.pdf


This is what comcast gave us. So it is the set-top box that will decode the signal that comcast is sending us? This thing has been stuck at 480i since we got it, even when using HDMI cables to the TV

Yes, that's an HD set-top box. What is the make/model of the TV it's connected to? Do you have HD channels turned on? HD output may require some settings in the menus. I'd also suggest trying the component video outputs in case there's some HDMI handshake issues - those go away with component.

So back to the basement box -what is that one? If the cableco's coax is truly looping through it, that could be an issue - I'd certainly look at putting in a simple splitter instead. And actually, for testing purposes, just get it out of the mix completely and just have the upstairs unit connected, and see what happens,.

Jeff


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post #5 of 7 Old 07-07-2013, 07:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Ok, sorry for the lapse in time. Now i'm really frustrated...I bought a splitter, that pushes 5-1000 Mhz. I have the cable coming in from outside being split from the TV in the basement, and off to the tv upstairs, with the HD box. Still...no the box upstairs can only select 480i. This is so frustrating!

The signal is being split by the splitter before it even can reach the box in the basement, The only thing I can think of is that the coax that connects the from the splitter to the tv is very long, and old. Can the signal be degraded so much from this, that it can only sputter out SD 480i? Or is it the splitter that can't handle an HD signal?
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post #6 of 7 Old 07-07-2013, 08:17 PM
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When you say " can only select 480i " do you mean select it in the menu for the set top box , or that you only see 480i from the TV menu ? Most boxes have to be changed in the menu to different resolution , and most of them I've seen are set at 480i when you get them. The splitter should have no problem with HD signal , same as the coax , unless your coax is the old TV antenna cable. If their boxes are like Directv and Dish boxes ,if I remember correctly the cable has to go to a "master" box first , then distribute to other boxes . I would think you would have to run the coax to the HD box first , then distribute from there to the other boxes . You said the cable came into the basement SD box first , then coax out to the upstairs unit . How many coax out ports does each box have ? How does that box connect to the TV it feeds? I think you were feeding the SD signal from the first box that was intended for that tv to the second box , so the HD signal couldn't transmit to the HD box.

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post #7 of 7 Old 07-08-2013, 02:12 PM
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Just want to pipe in. My opinion is by daisy chaining you are only feeding sd upstairs. I would try a quality splitter. Mind you I could be all wet.
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