New Sharp TV with QAM but problems with digital reception - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 12:19 PM - Thread Starter
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I have recently installed a new Sharp Aquos LCD that has a built in QAM decoder. I am using Time Warner cable for my TV input. I don't seem to be getting many digital stations (and most of the ones I get are oddly all assigned to channel "0") and am getting no HDTV stations. Do I need more equipment to make my TV run properly?
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post #2 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 12:23 PM - Thread Starter
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BTW, I get all the analog cable channels just fine.
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post #3 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 12:55 PM
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Ask this in your local thread. It could be that that's what TWC sends out in clear QAM in that area.
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post #4 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 02:12 PM
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Did you get a cable card from your cable company so that you can get the encrypted digital channels using your QAM tuner?
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post #5 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 02:43 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks Biker. It seems TWC customers should be able to use QAM.

Walford, I did not get a cable card. I do not intend to watch encrypted digital channels, but maybe some of them are encrypted (?). I just want the basic digital that I am paying for plus the broadcast HDTV. I am able to get some standard digital channels (though the channels are arranged in strange order) but I get no HDTV. I am thinking I might have to use their STB to get channels arranged sensibly. Otherwise, my TV just doesn't manage the digital channels with any logical order.

I really hate this digital wild wild west. I remember the days you plugged in your TV and it worked without any issues.
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post #6 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 02:57 PM
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The channels you are not getting are encrypted. A Cablecard will fix that and the channel mapping.
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post #7 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 03:13 PM - Thread Starter
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My TV does not have a cable card slot (seems fewer and fewer new models have this anymore) so it looks like I'll have to get a STB then.

Do you think some day in the near future, TV's with QAM will work fine without a STB like the old channels did? I really don't get why a STB/CC is necessary and figure it's TWC's way of controlling consumers and making them rent more gear
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post #8 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 03:27 PM
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Security.
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post #9 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Ah. So from now on, should I expect to *have* to use a STB to receive digital cable? What's the point of the QAM then? I didn't get a CC-ready tv because 1) I wasn't planning on watching encrypted digital and 2) people kept telling me that the current CC card is soon to be obsoleted. I thought a built-in QAM would be all I need, but apparently I was wrong

I have a HDTV getting OTA HD in my bedroom. That was so much easier and cheaper to get going
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post #10 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 04:13 PM
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Allmost all digital is encrypted. The only exception is the network "HD" channels that you are also able to receive in your area with an antenna and an ATSC tuner are required by the FCC to be unencrypted and can be received with basic digital cable and a QAM tuner.
What specific model Sharp do you have?
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post #11 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 04:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford View Post

Allmost all digital is encrypted. The only exception is the network "HD" channels that you are also able to receive in your area with an antenna and an ATSC tuner are required by the FCC to be unencrypted and can be received with basic digital cable and a QAM tuner.
What specific model Sharp do you have?

While it is correct that the FCC regulations do not allow cable companies to encrypt the local channels, many cable systems either are not aware of this regulation or have elected to violate it by going ahead and encrypting the local HD channels they are carrying.

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post #12 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 04:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoopadeedoo View Post

Ah. So from now on, should I expect to *have* to use a STB to receive digital cable? What's the point of the QAM then? I didn't get a CC-ready tv because 1) I wasn't planning on watching encrypted digital and 2) people kept telling me that the current CC card is soon to be obsoleted. I thought a built-in QAM would be all I need, but apparently I was wrong

I have a HDTV getting OTA HD in my bedroom. That was so much easier and cheaper to get going

Should have come here first.
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post #13 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 04:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Hehe. But it's not like I have a choice. I have to do what TWC wants me to do. Unless you guys can manhandle TWC into doing what I want, I'm kinda stuck either way
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post #14 of 41 Old 01-23-2007, 06:35 PM
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Like I said - ask this stuff in your local thread. Folks in your area have all of the TWC specifics. It could very well be that there's a glitch in your setup and you are supposed to get the locals in HD. BTW, how do you know you don't have HD?

On most cable systems clear QAM chs work the same as the analogs and in the future it will be just as simple as today - just in a QAM world.
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post #15 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 08:40 AM - Thread Starter
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I've posted the question in TWC LA. I'm not seeing any HD channels, even if I manually input channels people say they get HD on. And nearly all my digital channels I can get are incorrected channel mapped.

Oh, I own the Sharp LC37D42U.
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post #16 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 09:01 AM
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Again, how do you know the chs are digital and not HD? The mapping might be different - that's not an issue. Most folks get the locals, not much more.
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post #17 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 09:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Jones View Post

While it is correct that the FCC regulations do not allow cable companies to encrypt the local channels, many cable systems either are not aware of this regulation or have elected to violate it by going ahead and encrypting the local HD channels they are carrying.

It isn't because they are unaware. There is (was?) a point of contention on whether the FCC must-carry rules apply to:

1) analog only
2) analog *and* digital
3) analog *or* digital, but not necessarily both

Some cable companies (for example Comcast) interpret as #2.

Other cable companies interpret as #1 or #3

There may have been updated FCC regulations that clarify this issue, but I haven't been following, so please correct me if this has been resolved.
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post #18 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 09:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoopadeedoo View Post

I've posted the question in TWC LA. I'm not seeing any HD channels, even if I manually input channels people say they get HD on. And nearly all my digital channels I can get are incorrected channel mapped.

Oh, I own the Sharp LC37D42U.

On your Sharp, what does it say about the incoming signal for the channels that "should be" HD. Does it say 720p or 1080i or 480i?

The channel mappings will not match the cable company's mapping unless you use CableCARD, which you are incapable of doing on your set, so you just need to learn the new locations. If you are fortunate you may be able to convince TWC to forward the PSIP info, so they can get mapped to the same locations as the OTA HD channels.

Without the CableCARD-enabled channel mappings and without the PSIP info, you will likely need to enter the real RF channel. These will *look like* 119.x 123.x, etc. Your RF channel frequencies will be different than these since they are cable operator dependent.

Charter in LA does have some HD locals unencrypted, so I would be surprised if TWC has no HD locals unencrypted, but anything is possible.
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post #19 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 09:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biker19 View Post

Again, how do you know the chs are digital and not HD? The mapping might be different - that's not an issue. Most folks get the locals, not much more.

I know their digital because my TV set tells me when a signal is digital or analog. I know they aren't HD because I know what HD looks like (have another HD set). And their broadcast resolution (which my monitor also informs me of) is not 720p or 1080i. I'd be happy getting local HD, but I am not even getting that right now . Hopefully it's a known bug with my monitor or with TWC (have asked in the TWC-LA forum).
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post #20 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 09:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfhub View Post

On your Sharp, what does it say about the incoming signal for the channels that "should be" HD. Does it say 720p or 1080i or 480i?

The channel mappings will not match the cable company's mapping unless you use CableCARD, which you are incapable of doing on your set, so you just need to learn the new locations. If you are fortunate you may be able to convince TWC to forward the PSIP info, so they can get mapped to the same locations as the OTA HD channels.

Without the CableCARD-enabled channel mappings and without the PSIP info, you will likely need to enter the real RF channel. These will *look like* 119.x 123.x, etc. Your RF channel frequencies will be different than these since they are cable operator dependent.

Charter in LA does have some HD locals unencrypted, so I would be surprised if TWC has no HD locals unencrypted, but anything is possible.

Thanks. My TV does tell me if it's 480i, 720p, or 1080i, as well as the audio stream (mono, st, or dd). Maybe I just haven't found the HD channels yet, but I've looked extensively. Nearly all my digital channels are mapped to channel 0 right now, so I can't even quickly access any specific channel with the number keypad.

How does PSIP work?

It seems without the CC, I will need the STB, right?
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post #21 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 10:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoopadeedoo View Post

I know their digital because my TV set tells me when a signal is digital or analog. I know they aren't HD because I know what HD looks like (have another HD set). And their broadcast resolution (which my monitor also informs me of) is not 720p or 1080i. I'd be happy getting local HD, but I am not even getting that right now . Hopefully it's a known bug with my monitor or with TWC (have asked in the TWC-LA forum).

It doesn't sound like a TV issue - it's just a matter of what TWC is sending on the coax to your place. See if a new scan changes any of the chs. Talk to a neighbor that is connected directly to coax with a QAM tuner. Something is not right.

A CC goes directly into any TV that supports it - it won't help this issue.
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post #22 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 02:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoopadeedoo View Post

Nearly all my digital channels are mapped to channel 0 right now, so I can't even quickly access any specific channel with the number keypad.

How does PSIP work?

It seems without the CC, I will need the STB, right?

What does it mean to have nearly all your channels mapped to channel 0?

Do you mean 0.1, 0.2, 0.3, ... 0.x?

Without knowing what is the problem it is not possible to say whether you need an STB to access HD locals.

You can say that if you want the channel # mappings to match what your cable company uses, then you will need to use CC or STB.

PSIP is a way to carry meta-data for a digital channel. One type of data it carries is a virtual mapping of the channel #. For example, NBC OTA HD might be at UHF 44.x but everybody in your area has it in their head that NBC should be ch4. One aspect of PSIP allows the station to broadcast at UHF 44.x, but for the TV to display the channel # as 4.x. Some cable companies propagate that info onto their systems.

You should determine 2 things before jumping to any conclusions:
1) does TWC in your area send HD locals in the clear. You can check with the appropriate HD thread on the AVS HD reception subtopic
2) determine why the Sharp LCD is not receiving the HD locals if they are in the clear

I have an older Sharp LCD and I have no problems receiving the HD locals from Comcast. The channel #s are actual RF channels #s so I need to tune 119.x, 123.x, etc. but I do get the reception.
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post #23 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 03:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Mapped to channel 0 meaning the channels display as channel "0," no .x after them. It's very odd. My other HD set that gets HD OTA has the channels that are mapped logically, like 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, etc. for the different digital broadcasts on channel four.

My local forum says TWC in LA sends HD locals in the clear. However, there is not specific information regarding my local area.

I'm wondering if I'm doing something wrong with my TV, but I can't find any other option to find channels or alter my settings. I would like to get a cable box, but area is "out of stock" on them for the indefinite future. I am beginning to consider ditching TWC.
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post #24 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 05:35 PM
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It looks like sharp uses multiple rf inputs on some of their sets. This is a good thing. Use a splitter at the tv and use both 'analog in' and 'digital in'. Then try a new scan.
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post #25 of 41 Old 01-24-2007, 06:17 PM
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Did you connect the coax to the cable RF input? The manual should tell you exactly how to connect and then scan.
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post #26 of 41 Old 01-25-2007, 01:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoopadeedoo View Post

Mapped to channel 0 meaning the channels display as channel "0," no .x after them. It's very odd. My other HD set that gets HD OTA has the channels that are mapped logically, like 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, etc. for the different digital broadcasts on channel four.

My local forum says TWC in LA sends HD locals in the clear. However, there is not specific information regarding my local area.

It sounds like either some connections are not correct or the Sharp is not functioning properly.

It is a little hard to believe Sharp could send a set out that couldn't tune QAM. If it is a problem with the Sharp, it sounds like something they could fix because it would be so obviously broken (assuming there is no hookup error)
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post #27 of 41 Old 01-25-2007, 05:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfhub View Post

It isn't because they are unaware. There is (was?) a point of contention on whether the FCC must-carry rules apply to:

1) analog only
2) analog *and* digital
3) analog *or* digital, but not necessarily both

Some cable companies (for example Comcast) interpret as #2.

Other cable companies interpret as #1 or #3

There may have been updated FCC regulations that clarify this issue, but I haven't been following, so please correct me if this has been resolved.

It'll be interesting to see what effect the Democrats have on the HDTV/cable industries. Could be another strange ride if we end up with a Demo Prez and Demo control of both houses. I'd rather expect they'd require the cable companies to carry all the OTA subchannels. Just a guess though. There's also the issue of internet streaming TV as a substitute for the usual cable TV. This could get interesting fast. Google might have been way ahead of the curve picking up UTube.
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post #28 of 41 Old 01-25-2007, 10:22 AM - Thread Starter
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My set only has a single coax in (no seperate digital and analog). There is a coax cable that comes directly from outside into my house. This cable is connected directly to the single coax/RF input on the TV set.

My QAM does pick up and decode several digital channels. I don't get all the channels though, and the channel mapping is all screwed up.

BTW, the Sharp set is beautiful, but the owner's manual sucks!
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post #29 of 41 Old 01-25-2007, 10:47 AM
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Make sure the RF input is set to "Cable" and when performing a scan, use "Cable - analog & digital". (Select "no" for antenna, "no" for cable analog, "yes" for cable analog & digital)
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post #30 of 41 Old 01-25-2007, 10:49 AM
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So when others with TWC-LA tell you TWC sends HD locals in the clear, do they give you channel #s? Not talking about 4.1, 7.1, rather the real RF like 108.1, 113.1, etc.

If they do, what happens when you type those #s in by hand?

One other possibility is what someone pointed out earlier that TWC is using some new method liked switched video, but then that wouldn't make sense because others in TWC-LA say they get HD locals.
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