New Seiki LED TV can't find channels - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 10:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Hey guys, I'm new here...lurked around here for awhile for info before I purchased my new TV, and now I'm having some trouble with said TV, so now I'm here.  I ended up snagging the 50" Seiki LED TV that was running on the Amazon Black Friday specials a few days back, and it arrived yesterday.  I unboxed it, plugged it in, and everything worked great, up until I went to do the channel auto-scan, and it finds 0 channels.  It was replacing an older TV I had in the living room, and I also have one in the bedroom, so I tried both RF cables, which work on the other TV's, and still no channels found.  I live in an apartment and our cable is through a company called IQ Machines, who contracts through DISH.  I tried calling Seiki customer service, but they're closed on weekends, so I then called IQ Machines customer service, and they pretty much walked me through everything that I had already tried to no avail still.  I don't have any kind of cable box/tuner; just running an RF cable from the wall to the TV input.  I think I can probably get the cable company out here in person tomorrow to take a look, as well as get ahold of Seiki on the phone and maybe get some kind of answers if I can't get it figured out by then.  I was just wondering if anyone had any suggestions, or if this was likely some sort of defect with the TV.  Here is the TV on Amazon with some of the specs if that can be of any help:

 

http://www.amazon.com/Seiki-Digital-SE50FY10-50-Inch-1080p/forum/Fx73TKOJ1AXPND/-/5/ref=cm_cd_ql_psf_ql_pg5?_encoding=UTF8&asin=B00BXF7I8S&cdAnchor=B00BXF7I8S&cdSort=newestdoc

 

Thanks!

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post #2 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 01:23 PM
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Did you try scanning two time, once for antenna channels and once for cable channels?
John
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post #3 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 02:33 PM
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Did you set it to "Cable" before running the auto scan?

Does it even have a QAM tuner? The "specifications" page on Amazon is close to useless as is the company's website.
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post #4 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 02:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ctdish View Post

Did you try scanning two time, once for antenna channels and once for cable channels?
John

Yeah, I have done each of those multiple times, always returning 0 channels

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post #5 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 03:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ProjectSHO89 View Post

Did you set it to "Cable" before running the auto scan?

Does it even have a QAM tuner? The "specifications" page on Amazon is close to useless as is the company's website.

Well, basically what happens is when I can turn it on, it prompts me to select the input I want to use.  HDMI, VGA, etc. all work great, but when I select the regular TV source, it starts the initial TV setup: Language, then retail or home mode, which I obviously select home, then it starts the auto-scan feature where my two choices are Antenna and Cable.  I choose Cable, although I've tried both, and it scans through 100+ RF CH and returns 0 every time.  When I go into the TV menu I have tabs across the top for: Picture, Audio, Time, Setup, Lock, and Channel.  But the last 2 are ghosted out and won't let me scroll over to Channel to see what my options are there.

 

As far as the QAM tuner, I couldn't tell you for sure.  This is all I can find in the manual about anything relating to this:  Over-The-Air ATSC/NTSC RF input support and digital/analog channel auto-tuning.  I know when I called the cable company they were asking about how old the TV was, and when I told them it was brand new, they said a common problem shouldn't be the issue in any TV manufactured since 2006 or so...would that be the QAM tuner that they were referring to maybe?  Sorry I'll try to get more info about this if I can.  Is there anywhere that I could definitely check to find this out or anyway to test if it does?

 

Thanks

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post #6 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 03:38 PM
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Does Seiki require you to call them to "unlock" the tuner?
A review on Amazon states:

Why did I need to call Seiki customer service in order to "unlock" the tuner so that it would pick up my cable stations? Why then did I have to send an email with the model number to a gmail address in order to get the code to unlock the tuner so that it would find my cable stations?
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post #7 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 03:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by retiredengineer View Post

Does Seiki require you to call them to "unlock" the tuner?
A review on Amazon states:

Why did I need to call Seiki customer service in order to "unlock" the tuner so that it would pick up my cable stations? Why then did I have to send an email with the model number to a gmail address in order to get the code to unlock the tuner so that it would find my cable stations?

Wow I hadn't thought of that but it kind of makes sense now. I tried calling their customer service yesterday and it said they were closed for the weekend and it did mention something about sending an email to that address. But I've still never seen anywhere where I would input any type of code. Would this unlocking the tuner be something that they would be able to do over the phone?

UPDATE: I was able to email that address from the phone message, and got a code back, but now have no idea what to do with it...can't find anywhere to put it on the TV menus or anything, and I'm not using a cable box/tuner or anything like that where I could input it.
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post #8 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 06:07 PM
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Also try scanning for antenna channels and see what happens. Although sounds like cable setting should be correct. Or get some rabbit ears and do an antenna scan and see if it will get channels. Don't know why they would have the tuner locked.
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post #9 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 06:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Also try scanning for antenna channels and see what happens. Although sounds like cable setting should be correct. Or get some rabbit ears and do an antenna scan and see if it will get channels. Don't know why they would have the tuner locked.

Yeah, I've tried the antenna option as well, and it still returns 0 channels.  I should hopefully be able to get the cable company out tomorrow, as well as hopefully being able to get Seiki's customer service on the phone and maybe be able to figure something out.

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post #10 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by rolltide2014 View Post


UPDATE: I was able to email that address from the phone message, and got a code back, but now have no idea what to do with it...can't find anywhere to put it on the TV menus or anything, and I'm not using a cable box/tuner or anything like that where I could input it.

Don't know about the Seiki but the Westinghouse TV has a setup wizard that prompts for the code. Do you have such a wizard?
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post #11 of 60 Old 12-01-2013, 09:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Don't know about the Seiki but the Westinghouse TV has a setup wizard that prompts for the code. Do you have such a wizard?

Yeah I came across some stuff about Westinghouse having similar issues when trying to figure mine out.  But no, I can't find anything like that.  My setup basically goes: Language choice->Time Zone choice->Home/Retail Mode choice.  Then after choosing home mode, it asks me whether I want to use one of the inputs or scan for channels.  All of the inputs work fine, as I've had both my computer and Xbox 360 hooked up to different inputs just fine.  So when I choose the scan for channels option, then I'm given 2 options: Antenna or Cable.  Cable seems like the logical choice here, but I have ran each of the options probably 10+ times each, and always returns 0 RF CH found.  But I've never seen any place where I could enter the code that I got from their email....

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post #12 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 03:27 AM
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I wouldn't bother the cable company over this. It's not their fault that you bought a cheap, Chinese TV set that doesn't work without jumping through goofy hoops.

Contact Seiki, otherwise, return the TV set to Amazon.
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post #13 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 05:26 AM
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Originally Posted by ProjectSHO89 View Post

I wouldn't bother the cable company over this. It's not their fault that you bought a cheap, Chinese TV set that doesn't work without jumping through goofy hoops. Contact Seiki, otherwise, return the TV set to Amazon.

I agree, However, while one of the most asinine things I have ever heard of a Tv make do..I wouldn't necessarily fault the cheap chinese tv maker too much, given the cable guys are moving at lightning speed to eliminate analog AND clear qam channels...rolleyes.gif of course, one would ASSUME that the cheap, Chinese TV set will last that long.. perhaps not.. eek.gif

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post #14 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 06:47 AM
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Originally Posted by ProjectSHO89 View Post

I wouldn't bother the cable company over this. It's not their fault that you bought a cheap, Chinese TV set that doesn't work without jumping through goofy hoops.

Contact Seiki, otherwise, return the TV set to Amazon.
Exactly. Those cheap doorbuster deals on no-name brands are basically a waste of money. Poor design and bad pic quality. Spend a little more and find a good deal on a Samsung, LG, or Panasonic. There were some good prices on those models as well, for just a tad more. I would return that TV while you can.
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post #15 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 09:18 AM - Thread Starter
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So I did finally hear back from Seiki and they're saying that this model TV has no built in QAM tuner, and that is what is likely causing this to happen. Sorry I don't know much about these different cable signals, but would I get absolutely 0 channels in this case even though it supposedly does have the NTSC/ATSC tuner? Would just having a cable box fix this or what would some options be? I'm likely just going to end up returning it, but I'll try and look at all my options and how much more it's going to cost me.


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post #16 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 10:03 AM
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Are you sure about the no QAM tuner answer? Amazon says your model has clear QAM support. Model # SE50UY10 doesn't. Better call Seiki support again and hopefully you will get somebody who knows the right answers.
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post #17 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 10:05 AM
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If your cable system has any analog signals the TV should be able to get them. They would not be in high def. and would look like TV the past ( maybe some snow line patterns). Likely all other cable signals would be QAM. A cable box connected to an HDMI input would get you the QAM signals including any high def. channels.
Over the air stations are ATSC, so the TV should get them if connected to an antenna.
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post #18 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 10:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Are you sure about the no QAM tuner answer? Amazon says your model has clear QAM support. Model # SE50UY10 doesn't. Better call Seiki support again and hopefully you will get somebody who knows the right answers.

No I don't know that for sure.  That's just what I heard back the only time I ever got ahold of them.  Their customer service is pretty horrendous from everything I've read, and when I call them it won't even let me remain on hold, it just makes me leave a message and then disconnects, so who knows if I'll ever hear back about that.  When I was looking for answers, I stumbled across their Facebook page and people were on there asking questions, so I messaged them about my issues and got this back:

 

If you are connecting the TV to your cable service then you need a set top box to receive any channels since this model TV does not contain a QAM tuner.

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post #19 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 10:27 AM - Thread Starter
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If your cable system has any analog signals the TV should be able to get them. They would not be in high def. and would look like TV the past ( maybe some snow line patterns). Likely all other cable signals would be QAM. A cable box connected to an HDMI input would get you the QAM signals including any high def. channels.
Over the air stations are ATSC, so the TV should get them if connected to an antenna.
John

Okay, thanks.  Right now the only method I have available is just an RF cable from the wall port to the TV input, which has always worked with other TV's, but returns nothing with this one.  I'm wondering if the cable company could bring a box by to test it out and see what that would solve and then go from there.  It's becoming such a pain that I might just return it and be done with it if I don't come across some kind of solution soon.

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post #20 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 10:40 AM
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Walmart.com shows an SE46FY10 and claims that it has a QAM tuner.
Different screen size, but probably the same otherwise....

Don't ever make the MISTAKE of buying a Samsung TV..
They consider THIS
normal on a two month old set..
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post #21 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Walmart.com shows an SE46FY10 and claims that it has a QAM tuner.
Different screen size, but probably the same otherwise....

Yeah that's what I've been seeing everywhere too.  I wonder would this be something they would cut out for the Black Friday one to try to cut costs?

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In your OP you stated that you could receive the channels on "your older TV". What model was your old TV?
Maybe it wasn't receiving digital QAM, but rather analog cable?
Maybe all of your digital QAM is encrypted? Or maybe the QAM signal strength to your house is too low?
And possibly this new Seiki doesn't tune analog cable?

Don't ever make the MISTAKE of buying a Samsung TV..
They consider THIS
normal on a two month old set..
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post #23 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 12:03 PM - Thread Starter
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In your OP you stated that you could receive the channels on "your older TV". What model was your old TV?
Maybe it wasn't receiving digital QAM, but rather analog cable?
Maybe all of your digital QAM is encrypted? Or maybe the QAM signal strength to your house is too low?
And possibly this new Seiki doesn't tune analog cable?

Yeah ideally if I could ever get ahold of them I could get a straight answer and maybe find out what's causing this.

As for the older TV, I don't have the exact model with me, but off the top of my head, the one I was replacing was a Viore 24" 1080p LCD that I got maybe 4 years ago. I'll try and look it up to get more info when I get a chance.


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post #24 of 60 Old 12-02-2013, 04:16 PM
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I'm wondering if the cable company could bring a box by to test it out and see what that would solve and then go from there.  It's becoming such a pain that I might just return it and be done with it if I don't come across some kind of solution soon.

 

I'm sure your local cable company will love to rent you a HD cable box. It would then be the cable company's responsibility to get the cable box working, even when they start encrypting the local channels. The best way to connect a HD cable box to a HD TV is by HDMI.

 

 


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post #25 of 60 Old 12-03-2013, 06:38 AM
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Wow I hadn't thought of that but it kind of makes sense now. I tried calling their customer service yesterday and it said they were closed for the weekend and it did mention something about sending an email to that address. But I've still never seen anywhere where I would input any type of code. Would this unlocking the tuner be something that they would be able to do over the phone?

UPDATE: I was able to email that address from the phone message, and got a code back, but now have no idea what to do with it...can't find anywhere to put it on the TV menus or anything, and I'm not using a cable box/tuner or anything like that where I could input it.


Rolltide, I too purchased this TV on Amazon am trying to get it to find my unscrambled digital cable channels (aka clear QAM).  I tried to call them last night and after about 15 minutes on hold I sent them an email but haven't gotten a reply yet.  If you go into setup - channels, select QAM and then attempt to scan for channels.  It will ask you for the 5 digit access code.  This is where you enter it.  Could you please post the code so that others will not have as difficult a time in future as you and I are having.  I assume the access code is the same for all of their TVs.  If the code you received doesn't work on my TV, I will have to wait for my email response.

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post #26 of 60 Old 12-03-2013, 02:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Rolltide, I too purchased this TV on Amazon am trying to get it to find my unscrambled digital cable channels (aka clear QAM).  I tried to call them last night and after about 15 minutes on hold I sent them an email but haven't gotten a reply yet.  If you go into setup - channels, select QAM and then attempt to scan for channels.  It will ask you for the 5 digit access code.  This is where you enter it.  Could you please post the code so that others will not have as difficult a time in future as you and I are having.  I assume the access code is the same for all of their TVs.  If the code you received doesn't work on my TV, I will have to wait for my email response.

The code I got is 31415.  Please let me know how this works for you.  It won't let me go over to the Channels tab on the menu on my TV; that and the Lock tab are both not accessible for me.  Any time I try to just use the TV source, it takes me through the setup through the channel search, where it finds nothing, then it kicks me back out to the screen where I have to choose between channel search or an input.  Was your TV able to find any channels?  I bet if I could just get into the TV source somehow without going straight into the setup wizard, then I could pull up the menu and be able to access the channel tab.

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I won't get home until after 10PM tonight.  I will try the code and post later tonight to let you know if I have any luck or not.  I plugged it directly into the coax cable (I have comcast) and it found a sort of test pattern on about 5 analog channels.  When I click on the menu button I get about 5 or 6 tabs at the top and I believe the one on the far right (I am typing this from memory) is called "channels".  I think I then used the down arrow to go to the lower menus.  Under input type I selected QAM (this should get your local digital, e.g. 6.1 - at least it does for me with other TVs) and then I selected scan.  This is where it asks for the access code.  Good luck!

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post #28 of 60 Old 12-03-2013, 04:41 PM - Thread Starter
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I won't get home until after 10PM tonight.  I will try the code and post later tonight to let you know if I have any luck or not.  I plugged it directly into the coax cable (I have comcast) and it found a sort of test pattern on about 5 analog channels.  When I click on the menu button I get about 5 or 6 tabs at the top and I believe the one on the far right (I am typing this from memory) is called "channels".  I think I then used the down arrow to go to the lower menus.  Under input type I selected QAM (this should get your local digital, e.g. 6.1 - at least it does for me with other TVs) and then I selected scan.  This is where it asks for the access code.  Good luck!

Yeah, see I think yours finding those few channels, even being worthless channels is what makes the difference.  I think because mine can't find any channels at all it won't let me go into the menu on the TV source, and I can't get to those last 2 tabs.  I think I just need to find a way to got my TV to pick up just one channel somehow, and then I could get into those menus.  That is assuming that that code is the answer to all our problems....Good luck!

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post #29 of 60 Old 12-03-2013, 08:03 PM
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Yeah, see I think yours finding those few channels, even being worthless channels is what makes the difference.  I think because mine can't find any channels at all it won't let me go into the menu on the TV source, and I can't get to those last 2 tabs.  I think I just need to find a way to got my TV to pick up just one channel somehow, and then I could get into those menus.  That is assuming that that code is the answer to all our problems....Good luck!

The code worked!  Originally, I thought it didn't because the box for the code came back up.  But then I hit continue and it scanned and found about 50 digital channels.  I am looking at the manual and it shows the setup tab.  Can you get to it?  If so, you might want to Restore Default to restore to factory default settings and then try again.  If you can get to the lock tab, it might be set.  The default is 0000.  Also, I was looking at page 12 "Input Source".  I wonder if those other menus are not accessible if you don't select TV as your source.  Try pressing the source button on your remote to make sure you have selected TV.  Thanks for the code and good luck.

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post #30 of 60 Old 12-03-2013, 10:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by brianlb1 View Post
 

The code worked!  Originally, I thought it didn't because the box for the code came back up.  But then I hit continue and it scanned and found about 50 digital channels.  I am looking at the manual and it shows the setup tab.  Can you get to it?  If so, you might want to Restore Default to restore to factory default settings and then try again.  If you can get to the lock tab, it might be set.  The default is 0000.  Also, I was looking at page 12 "Input Source".  I wonder if those other menus are not accessible if you don't select TV as your source.  Try pressing the source button on your remote to make sure you have selected TV.  Thanks for the code and good luck.

I'm glad it worked for you and I'm sure I could probably get mine to work too but here's my problem.  If I'm on inputs like HDMI, AV, VGA, etc., then when I go to the menu, I cannot access the last two tabs, LOCK and CHANNEL.  When I go to the TV SOURCE, then it takes me through the setup wizard with language, time zone, and all that until I finally reach the cable scan where I choose either Antenna or Cable.  Either choice nets me 0 RF CH found, and it kicks me back out and starts the wizard over again.  I've tried hitting MENU, EXIT, hitting SOURCE and selecting TV again, but it always throws me right back into the setup wizard whenever I try to use the TV source.  I'm thinking maybe I can just go to Best Buy  or Wal-mart or wherever and buy one of those really cheap antennas, use it to pick up a couple channels so I can get out of being trapped in the setup wizard, then hopefully I can access the CHANNEL tab in the menu, put in the code, and hopefully everything would work then and I'd just return the antenna.  It just seems to me that the fact that I can't pick up a single channel may be what's keeping me stuck in the setup wizard and out of those menus I need access to.

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