Cablevision HD box copy protection blocking ReplayTV - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 05:17 PM - Thread Starter
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I have Cablevision service with the Scientific Atlanta 4200HD cable box. The 4200HD has a DVI output so I purchased a DVI to HDMI cable to connect it to my HDTV.

Recently I have had several of my personal recordings ruined by the Scientific Atlanta box. At the beginning of a show or around the middle a copy protection error box will pop-up on the screen and say "The DVI/HDMI output is blocked" "Press EXIT to Cancel." This happens on both analog cable channels and HDTV channels.

I have been recording from the S-video output to a ReplayTV, but now this does not seem to be reliable anymore. As a result I have had no choice but to download several tv shows off of ********** since the SA box has destroyed my own personal recordings. I will try removing the HDMI/DVI cable and going back to the component cables to see if I will still get the copy protection error.

I should not be forced to have to pay $10 a month for Cablevisions PVR when I already own a PVR. What Cablevision and Scientifc Atlanta are doing seems like criminal practices to me. They have no right to block out every single recording device except their own. How has it now become illegal to use a VCR/PVR unless it is sold to you by your cable company? What Scientific Atlanta is doing has to be illegal.

{EDIT: After doing some research I see this is a common problem for Tivo/RTV users with a Scientific Atlanta HD box}
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post #2 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 06:52 PM
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Let me know what you find. I have the same problem with my CV SA8300. Not every show is blocked though. I have been surfing the HD recorder forums which indicate that many shows and movies have copy protection flags which don't allow them to be recorded to DVD recorders, Tivos, ReplayTV's etc.
Out of curiousity, what happens when you press exit to cancel? Does that allow the recording to continue? I have never been around to press the exit button when it happens.
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post #3 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 07:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cool8man
I have been recording from the S-video output to a ReplayTV, but now this does not seem to be reliable anymore. As a result I have had no choice but to download several tv shows off of ********** since Cablevision has destroyed my own personal recordings.
Can you record analog cable instead? For most people the majority of the channels they record are on analog cable with a few digital cable channels also having good shows.
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post #4 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 07:46 PM
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Did you call Cablevision and ask them about it? That would be my first to-do.

- A

It's true - I read it somewhere. I wrote it down, and then I read it.
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post #5 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 08:02 PM
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A quick peek at Cablevision's web site turned up this FAQ item:
I hooked my HDMI wire to my HDTV and I still don't have a picture.


Answer

Please follow these steps:
  • Verify that you have an HD television
  • Verify that you have a Cablevision provided HD-DVR converter
  • Make sure you have purchased and are using an HDMI cable (we do not sell, nor provide this wire. You must purchase this, prior to installation). There are no additional Jacks that are needed, for Audio
  • Make sure connection is tight at both ends
  • Make sure you are on the appropriate input to view HDMI (your television must be
  • HDCP compliant to use the DVI interface. Inputs can generally be changed by utilizing the television remote by pressing the appropriate key; input, source, tv/video OR Manually on the TV itself)
  • Make sure you have chosen "HDMI/DVI" in Set Picture Format under "General Settings"
  • Hook-up Cablevision provided component connectors to check for proper HD access
This suggests that you have to have their DVR and your TV must be HDCP-compliant. Way to waste a good feature.

- A

It's true - I read it somewhere. I wrote it down, and then I read it.
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post #6 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 09:38 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BTMaximus
I have been surfing the HD recorder forums which indicate that many shows and movies have copy protection flags which don't allow them to be recorded to DVD recorders, Tivos, ReplayTV's etc.
Out of curiousity, what happens when you press exit to cancel? Does that allow the recording to continue? I have never been around to press the exit button when it happens.
As far as I know this copy protection only comes up when the tv is off and the replaytv is recording. Since nobody is actually watching the program when this happens it is not possible to actually press cancel to remove it. It obscures the entire picture and all that is recorded is the sound.

{EDIT: Just found out that the copy protection can come up even while you're watching a program. I was watching American Idol tonight and the copy protection warning never came up while I was watching through the box. I later checked the recording of American Idol on the Replaytv and I see that it started blocking the program half way through. Had I not watched the program live I would have had to download it from the internet.}

By the way this copy protection is new. I have had this same exact HD cable box for the past few months and it only started blocking all of these programs now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sfhub
Can you record analog cable instead? For most people the majority of the channels they record are on analog cable with a few digital cable channels also having good shows.
As I said this is happening on all channels including basic analog cable channels, digital cable channels, and HD channels. The copy protection is initiated by the content provider according to Cablevision. I recorded a program on USA that was blocked half way through the program. I have had the show 24 blocked on network tv as well. (Edit: American Idol was also blocked half way through)


Quote:
Originally Posted by antnjen
Did you call Cablevision and ask them about it? That would be my first to-do.

- A
I decided to check the AVS forums first before I waste my time talking to Cablevision. This is what I've found from other people who have spoken with Cablevision: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...&&#post6845666

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joseph Dubin
The reason copy protection was activated was because a HDMI cable was connected to Cablevision's HD DVR. I received the following today from cablevision:


"HDMI uses HDCP (High Bandwith Digital Content Protection" to protect unauthorized duplication of content. HDMI, when used in combination with HDCP provides an audio/video interface that meets the security requirements of our program providers.

When devices such as digital boxes, DVD players, or other digital multimedia video devices are connected to a DCR TV, digital video and/or digital audio recording, devices may be restricted or temporarily disabled to prevent the unauthorized duplication of copyrighted programming. If a customer is unable to make a digital copy of a program, the programmer has applied HDCP to that particular content. The copy restrictions include 'copy never', 'copy once' or 'copy freely'.

Another copy protection technology is called the 'Copy Generation Management System for Analog' that allows customers to make one copy (analog or digital) of a program but will prohibit additional copies of the copy. HBO currently uses this protection to secure HBO-On-Demand, and Cinemas-On-Demand programs."



In other words, I can't use a HDMI cable if I want to record to a DVD player. I could use DVI but might be restricted to one recording once which makes hard drive dubbing useless. The only way around this and still use the HD DVR is to use component cables, which is a step below DVI/HDMI quality.

Cablevision told me they have nothing to do with copy protection and that it is incorporated into the signal by the stations (then why did it also happen on Channel 12 news?).

To avoid further headaches :mad: I traded in my HD DVR for a HD Box with just the DVI output (I have an adapter so the cable's compatable). I no longer have the flexibility of hard drive dubbing but will be able to record movies directly to DVD via timer recording ala VCR.
Seems completely absurd that they're blocking me from recording programs like I always have with a lousy S-video cable just because I want to hook up a direct digital connection to my new HDTV. This HDCP crap is punishing people who are doing nothing wrong. Everytime they block a show I have no choice but to go online and use torrent, which is what I thought they were trying to prevent in the first place. I am NOT going to be forced to pay Cablevision $10 more a month for their crappy DVR when I already have a perfectly good DVR. What is this the mob I'm dealing with? If I want to use my own DVR I should be able to.
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post #7 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 10:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cool8man
As I said this is happening on all channels including basic analog cable channels. The copy protection is initiated by the content provider according to Cablevision. I recorded a program on USA that was blocked half way through the program. I have had the show 24 blocked on network tv as well.
I'm talking about bypassing the cable set top box and recording analog cable using the internal analog cable tuner in the replay. I was under the impression your cable box is the device that is detecting the flag and blocking the output?

You can actually define multiple content sources on your Replay. You can leave the existing cable box config and define a new "analog cable" config using the replaytv internal tuner. That way for all analog channels, you use the replaytv internal tuner, and just for the channels which require cable box, use the cable box.

This is how I have my system setup.
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post #8 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 10:39 PM
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Welcome to the new world of digital content protection and the broadcast flag. This is what we've been warning about forever, but no one cared.

The thing to do is to complain to your congressman.
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post #9 of 17 Old 01-24-2006, 11:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfhub
I'm talking about bypassing the cable set top box and recording analog cable using the internal analog cable tuner in the replay. I was under the impression your cable box is the device that is detecting the flag and blocking the output?

You can actually define multiple content sources on your Replay. You can leave the existing cable box config and define a new "analog cable" config using the replaytv internal tuner. That way for all analog channels, you use the replaytv internal tuner, and just for the channels which require cable box, use the cable box.

This is how I have my system setup.
I understand what you're saying now, but I would have to add a splitter to do that, I wouldn't be able to record any of the digital cable channels which make up the majority of the channels I have, and the analog reception without a cable box is much worse quality. This is bullcrap.
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post #10 of 17 Old 01-25-2006, 06:28 AM
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As Joesc1 said " Welcome to the new world of digital content protection and the broadcast flag". It sucks... :mad: :mad: Visit the Blu-ray & HD DVD areas of the forum to see just how bad it gets! As they say: You ain't seen nothing yet!!

The SA4200HD has two sets of component outputs that provide HD without the broadcast flag. Most HD TV's have component inputs, so you can connect the TV to the SA4200HD component output and the Replay to the S-Video output.
That will solve the "Protected Content" issue.

BTW: there's no picture quality difference between HDMI/DVI and component outputs. And... HDMI=DVI but DVI has no audio pass-through. So any DRM issues that crop up with your HDMI connection will probably show up on the DVI connection too. Even most early DVI connections are HDCP compliant.

"If we ain't outta here in ten minutes, we won't need no rocket to fly through space."
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post #11 of 17 Old 01-25-2006, 10:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joesc1
Welcome to the new world of digital content protection and the broadcast flag. This is what we've been warning about forever, but no one cared.

The thing to do is to complain to your congressman.

The sky is falling and j6p doesn't care.

WeÂre doomed. It will never work
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post #12 of 17 Old 01-25-2006, 11:13 AM
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Let me suggest you check [and ask your representative to support] H.R. 1201 -- an attempt by at least one legislator apparently not in someone's pocket to restore some of the historical consumer rights being stepped all over by the DCMA, RIAA, MPAA, etc.:

http://www.house.gov/boucher/internet.htm

The only way to 'fix' this crap is in DC. Get active. Make 'em know their seat depends on keeping you happy -- not Hollywood.
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post #13 of 17 Old 01-25-2006, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cool8man
I understand what you're saying now, but I would have to add a splitter to do that, I wouldn't be able to record any of the digital cable channels which make up the majority of the channels I have, and the analog reception without a cable box is much worse quality. This is bullcrap.
This is all moot if you can connect the component cables and avoid the issue but...

You can still record digital cable, you would just be choosing to record analog cable through the ReplayTV internal tuner and only going to the cable box for the digital channels. This would limit your exposure to the problem. You would define *both* digital cable through STB and analog cable through internal tuner in your Replay config. Digital cable channels would be 1-999. Analog cable channels would be 1001-1099. You choose whether to record the analog cable version through your internal tuner by recording the 10xx channel. You choose to record using your STB/svideo input using channel xxx.

Unless your area is doing analog/digital simulcast, your cable box is also using analog signal for the channels under 100, just like the Replay would in the configuration I suggested.

Yeah, you shouldn't have to do any of this, I'm just offering you options.
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post #14 of 17 Old 01-26-2006, 05:21 PM
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Remind your congressperson of two things:

1. It will not stop determined video thieves.

2. It treats ordinary people like the thieves they think are being stopped.

Don't sweat petty things, and don't pet sweaty things.
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post #15 of 17 Old 01-27-2006, 11:27 AM
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Unlike CD & DVD ripping, broadcast flag is NOT about stopping video piracy. It's about keeping control of YOUR time in the hands of content distributors. It bugs the crap out of them that you can watch whatever you want whenever you want. If you insist on having that degree of control over your life, you're going to have to pay-per-view. (I doubt Replay The Next Generation will ignore copy protect flags, including Macrovision, though unless it restricts itself to Windows Vista, being on an open platform means an easy hack is inevitable.)

These clowns got very fat and happy when there was very limited bandwidth (in a generic sense) for distribution, and they had control of it. Now between internet and cheap recording media they have lost that and can't picture a world where they can still make barrels of money. It's there, they just have no imagination (not unusual for wealthy b-school types). Since they have been relatively successful using something they have (money) to replace what they no longer have (imagination and hunger) they will apply the money where it does the most for them - the legislature. The legislature depends on them for access to "voters" (there's a quaint term) so the Congress has no reason to decline the generosity of the content distibutors. It's not like the "voters" will notice until way too late to do anything about it.

I make it sound so simple don't I. ;)


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post #16 of 17 Old 01-29-2006, 05:06 AM
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OK. Let me get this straight, I finally took the plunge and got an HDTV. I hooked it up to my NY area Cablevision supplied SA4200HD via expensive HDMI/DVI cables to my HDTV and got the note about "Copy Protected-Signal blocked" or words to that effect. I called Cablevision and they told me it was an "issue" with the SA4200HD and mentioned nothing about the content supplier. She said that one box may work and another may not with HDMI/DVI connection. She said I could swap the box for another....or use the component cable setup which they supply. Yes, the message no longer appears with the component cables. Something sounds wrong to me. Cablevision has been offering HD with the SA4200HD for quite some time now and I can't believe they having fixed the problem with SA in all this time. Now I'm seeing her answer probably wasn't correct. By the way, I don't have Replay TV but I do have a DVD recorder. But that point is moot since even if I don't go thru the DVD recorder the signal gets the message when just using the cable box. Now before I start crawling behind my home entertainment unit every day and pulling cables to swap the box as she suggested I could try, would this be the waste of time as it appears? Based on these posts it isn't an issue with the box.
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post #17 of 17 Old 01-29-2006, 06:28 AM
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Hi Base......
I have Cablevision and the SA4200HD. I use the Component output because my DVI port is being used by my upconverting DVD player. I did use the DVI port for about two weeks (before my DVD player got delivered) and sometimes I got the "Copy Protected-Signal blocked" message too. I found that if I changed to an analog channel (like ch2 or ch4) than back to HD the block went away. It's a pain in the butt- and it proves it's not the content but either Cablevision or the SA4200HD itself that's unreliable.

I see you found the section right here at AVS that deals with HD reception equipment, and there's a few online forums that deal with Cablevision:
http://www.satelliteguys.us/forumdis...c&daysprune=-1
http://www.dslreports.com/forum/ool~...ys=10~start=40

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