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post #811 of 4859 Old 02-01-2005, 10:02 AM
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Hello Portland,

Im from the Omaha NE thread. Looks like we have the same problem. Emmis owns one of your stations (KOIN) in the area and they will not let them put there HD Channel on Cable as they want Money for a Free over the air channel.

Please help and Email Emmis and let them know what you think.

===============Pasted from the thread==============

Looks like over in the Omaha-Lincoln Ne Thread the Cox Cable Emmis issue is still alive.

Emmis pulled there CBS HD from Cox cable one year again demanding money for the free over the air channel.


Here is the thread:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/show...&pagenumber=130


Here is some info on who to Email- pated from the thread

Here are the EMAIL Addresses for the Top VPs at Emmis Corp (the ones who own KM3 and the ones who made them pull the HD).

Cut and Past Comma delimited:

rmena@emmis.com,desayian@emmis.com,kate@emmis.com,staffingdepartment@emmis. com,ir@emmis.com,wzberger@emmis.com,rcummings@emmis.com

(below is a line by line list)

Please Email them weekly and ask for the free HD channel to be put back on.



KM3 and Emmis one year ago said they pulled there HD Feed because cox was charging for it and making money on it.

Things have changed in the last year.

Now all cable systems in a Emmis area offer the Local HD channels FREE unscrambled via free QAM channels.

This means the Emmis reasoning is no longer valid. They have no reason to demand money for a FREE OVER THE AIR HD Signal.

After all the Government, our tax money gave them the channel. We should be able to watch it free over the air and free on cable.

It is time for Emmis to add KM3 HD back to Cox.



rmena@emmis.com
desayian@emmis.com
kate@emmis.com
staffingdepartment@emmis.com
ir@emmis.com
wzberger@emmis.com
rcummings@emmis.com
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post #812 of 4859 Old 02-01-2005, 01:06 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by ScottChez
Now all cable systems in a Emmis area offer the Local HD channels FREE unscrambled via free QAM channels.

This means the Emmis reasoning is no longer valid. They have no reason to demand money for a FREE OVER THE AIR HD Signal.

Well, first let me say there is no one here that would like to see all the local channels in HD on Comcast but after a lot of thought about the whole thing i think I understand the position Emmis has taken. For the service I purchase from Comcast (limited basic) I think I have to support the position Emmis has taken (I know I'm in the minority here so please, no flames, it's just my thoughts).

Here in lies the problem. the cable company charges for a QAM receiver. If this type of receiver was free or available to the consumer to purchase or for free from the cable company I think this would be a valid argument. The problem seems to be Emmis sees the cable company profiting heavily by charging a monthly fee for the QAM receiver. I for one believe this IS a valid argument. The cable company should treat and provide HD channels the same way they provide local analog broadcast.

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post #813 of 4859 Old 02-01-2005, 02:04 PM
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Considering the modest charge they have for the HD PVR boxes, I highly doubt this is a signficant revenue stream for them (something like $5~10, a few more $$$ if you upgrade to get ESPN HD etc...) on a box that costs a few hundred wholesale.

In the bigger picture, if the cable company caved to Emiss, what do you think would happen for the carriage rights to all the other stations that have already conceded the feed to cable. Emiss is living a pipe dream if they think they can get the cable company to concede. If they do, guess who's cable rates are going up?

For both my $$$ and what I believe is fair (shouldn't Comcast charge Emiss to carry their feed, add all the HD eyeballs for Emiss adverts which Emiss DIRECTLY gets return for?), I gotta side with Comcast (and I hate being gouged by comcast for cable modem, and cable).

My prediction is that eventually the cable HD eyeball count will grow to the point where Emiss and their advertisers can no longer ignore them and they will capitualte to Comcast...
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post #814 of 4859 Old 02-01-2005, 02:19 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by glz
Well, first let me say there is no one here that would like to see all the local channels in HD on Comcast but after a lot of thought about the whole thing i think I understand the position Emmis has taken. For the service I purchase from Comcast (limited basic) I think I have to support the position Emmis has taken (I know I'm in the minority here so please, no flames, it's just my thoughts).

Here in lies the problem. the cable company charges for a QAM receiver. If this type of receiver was free or available to the consumer to purchase or for free from the cable company I think this would be a valid argument. The problem seems to be Emmis sees the cable company profiting heavily by charging a monthly fee for the QAM receiver. I for one believe this IS a valid argument. The cable company should treat and provide HD channels the same way they provide local analog broadcast.

First, I think you mean to say that EVERYONE would like to see all the local channels in HD on Comcast. That is certainly my position.

Second, I think both of you are correct. Comcast should make local HD available as they do local SD broadcasts. But, does that mean they should provide you with the HD tuner for free? I don't think so. I mean, if you've got an old TV that can't pick up all the analog channels, you have to rent a cable box. The only difference here is that the HD tuner (probably rightly so) rents for more.

But I really am befuddled by Emmis position on this. They decide that Comcast is profiting from their signal, whose distribution to Comcast customers would also profit Emmis (they do make money by advertising, don't they, and more viewers means higher ad rates). So they refuse to give Comcast the signal and thereby shoot themselves in the foot by keeping their highest quality signal out of the hands of a group of people who have clearly shown that they're willing to spend significant amounts of disposable income. I think they should be frothing at the mouth to have their TV signals playing on our fancy bigscreens.

All I can say is keep on writing emails and keep on boycotting Emmis (KOIN) local programming. If you have to watch Letterman, or other network shows, so be it. I do. But I don't watch KOIN local news.
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post #815 of 4859 Old 02-01-2005, 02:25 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by glz
Well, first let me say there is no one here that would like to see all the local channels in HD on Comcast

Right, no one here would like to see that

Quote:


but after a lot of thought about the whole thing i think I understand the position Emmis has taken. For the service I purchase from Comcast (limited basic) I think I have to support the position Emmis has taken (I know I'm in the minority here so please, no flames, it's just my thoughts).

Here in lies the problem. the cable company charges for a QAM receiver. If this type of receiver was free or available to the consumer to purchase or for free from the cable company I think this would be a valid argument. The problem seems to be Emmis sees the cable company profiting heavily by charging a monthly fee for the QAM receiver. I for one believe this IS a valid argument. The cable company should treat and provide HD channels the same way they provide local analog broadcast.

But they do therein lies the problem with that reasoning. All OTA channels - analog or digital - are provided in-the-clear, no scrambling or encryption whatsoever. If you possess your own clearQAM or OpenCable tuner (which are available on the open market for consumer purchase, many integrated into new televisions), you don't have to pay a dime more to the cable company than what you're already paying for limited basic to get those channels. That the customer may not currently possess the proper tuner to receive those channels isn't the cable company's fault.

They may charge you to rent an HD QAM tuner ($6.45 in your case), and may be making a tidy profit on the side, but that's no different than how they distribute any of their tuners we're still paying a $10/mo lease on any SD digital cable box (well, $5 for the lease, $5 for the access fee, and the first is included with the digital package), the HD version is just $5 more (and the DVR another $5 on top of that).

But that's not the only profit with which Emmis is concerned. The problem with Emmis's reasoning is that they think the cable company would make more money off of carrying their signal by upselling their customers with higher-cost HD programming, so they want a cut. But again, how is that any different than what they did with the analog channels? It wasn't that long ago that neither satellite company offered locals, how big a selling point was it that cable did? That didn't change the fact that limited basic was still $9-$12, as mandated by law, regardless of what locals they do or do not carry. They're not making one additional dime off of that channel directly; as long as the laws governing such rates remain in place, they never can. Any additional programming a customer may or may not buy isn't affected by whether Emmis's feeds were carried (if I'm deciding whether or not to subscribe to HBO, the presence or lack thereof CBS-HD is a non-issue), it can only affect their decision to subscribe to Comcast or not. What Emmis would have them do would require them to raise their limited basic rates, and that's just not an option.

As you said, if that type of receiver were available - either free or for purchase from outside the cable company - then their argument falls flat on its face. We've already got one of those qualifications, it won't be long before the other is met as well. What Emmis is doing now only amounts to extortion.
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post #816 of 4859 Old 02-01-2005, 02:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Funny how other CBS affiliates had no problem with cable companies broadcasting HD signal. It is only the greedy Emmis family that wants to extort more out of subscribers (I say subscribers because it is WE that would bear any added cost). And don't give me this "recoup. of cost of upgrading to HD" arguement for Emmis....they HAD to do it anyways eventually and it is a drop in the bucket compared to what Comcast has spent to upgrade its equipment and facilities (they've spent some MAJOR dough with Level3, Motorola, and others). The nominal fee I get charged for HD with a dual tuner DVR is NOT going to get Comcast it's investment back, but it IS going to keep me as a customer. Screw Emmis-CBS as far as I'm concerned. They are the losers as I'll be watching the other network's commercials.
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post #817 of 4859 Old 02-01-2005, 02:49 PM
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Here here to silly Emmis (Koin). And ha ha as the Superbowl is on FOX anyway Emmis!

PS But I still want my UPN-TV
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post #818 of 4859 Old 02-02-2005, 09:07 AM
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Sending messages to Emmis, especially email messages, is unlikely to produce any results. At most they'll have some low-level employee note them and then trash them. Why? Cause what we want only interests Emmis when it affects their wallet. They don't care how many of us are annoyed with them as long as their advertisers continue to pay them.

So it's not viewership, it's advertising revenue here. Why else do you think that local news programs have such skimpy budgets, with KOIN being one of the skimpiest? (They don't even bother to have a full-time reporter on the governor/state capital beat) Koin doesn't care who is actually watching as long as Nielsen numbers don't drop so far as to affect their advertising revenue.

So the only way to affect them is to complain to their local advertisers that we, the generally well-off and therefore highly-prized HDTV audience, don't watch KOIN very much or at all because of KOIN's stance on cable. The advertisers would hopefully then start asking KOIN questions about this or even better demand smaller advertising fees.

TV stations, as I understand, are not big money makers so they should feel such pressure rather keenly.
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post #819 of 4859 Old 02-02-2005, 10:47 AM
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Quote:


Originally posted by Steve McD
Another way is to take the S-Video output from an HD tuner box and feed it into a standalone DVD recorder.

But then I'd have to buy a standalone DVD recorder box and burn the DVD's and carry them around, right? The way I have it set up now, I just have to run one command and the show is downconverted (optionally to 24 fps if it's a filmed drama) overnight and sent to my laptop's HD the next morning.

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post #820 of 4859 Old 02-02-2005, 10:56 AM
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Originally posted by DevlinNulland
Why else do you think that local news programs have such skimpy budgets, with KOIN being one of the skimpiest? (They don't even bother to have a full-time reporter on the governor/state capital beat).

I've always thought it was because stations need to pay for news helicopters and upper-six digit salaries for their anchors. That's what people want to see. They don't care so much about what's happening in Salem every day.

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post #821 of 4859 Old 02-02-2005, 11:20 AM
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Quote:


If this type of receiver was free or available to the consumer to purchase or for free from the cable company I think this would be a valid argument.

My TV has a QAM tuner built into it. My brother runs an HTPC with an HD card that has a QAM tuner.

Any cable card ready TV has a QAM tuner built into it.

Emmis is flat out in the wrong.

oh yeah I'd like to have UPN too.

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post #822 of 4859 Old 02-02-2005, 01:41 PM
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oh yeah I'd like to have UPN too.

I watch more on UPN (1 show) than I do on CBS (0 shows), so I'd be happy with just that

In a way I wish that the few shows I watch regularly would get cancelled, then I would have no reason to continue paying for cable and watching the bill go up all the time. Then I could just deal with the pain and anguish of OTA Receivers to use up some spare hours/days/weeks
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post #823 of 4859 Old 02-03-2005, 03:45 AM
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If it's true that KOIN-TV's news dept. is underbudgeted and in decline, that's a shame. There was a time when they had one of the nation's best local news operations and they generated many other good programs in their own studios. Before the restrictions were enacted that limited the out-of-town broadcast stations a cable company could carry, KOIN was available in many cities around the state. It had a lot of viewers here in Eugene and we regarded it as a statewide station and the equivalent of the Oregonian newspaper. It's an example of what often happens when your local stations are controled by absentee owners.
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post #824 of 4859 Old 02-03-2005, 12:15 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by sotti
My TV has a QAM tuner built into it. My brother runs an HTPC with an HD card that has a QAM tuner.

My TV doesn't and my two HD cards don't. I've been reading in the HTPC forum about the trouble people have had using QAM cards on their cable systems and they're not getting any support from their cable companies. Are there even standards that third party companies can follow if they want to be sure their QAM cards will work? It sounds like they're reverse-engineering everything at this point and not having a lot of success. Some companies are even sending the local stations encrypted -- tough luck loser! It doesn't make me want to buy a QAM card any time soon.

OTA is completely different situation, at least around here. The ATSC standards are published, there's free software that anyone can use or adapt to receive broadcasts and station engineers have worked hard to make sure their data works with any ATSC receiver, even with some notorious receivers that don't follow the standard correctly.

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post #825 of 4859 Old 02-03-2005, 01:14 PM
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Did anyone notice any lip sync problems last night (Wed)? I recorded Smallville on the HD channel and watched it today. About 45-50 minutes into the program, the sound started lagging behind the video enough to be noticable. I thought perhaps it was a 6412 problem so I went through the program again, sampling from the beginning. The beginning was OK, and the problems appeared at the same time as before. (I figured if it was a 6412 problem, replaying would show lip sync issues at the beginning where they weren't there before.) So I'm suspecting it was a transmission issue. Just checking to see if anyone else noticed.
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post #826 of 4859 Old 02-03-2005, 03:49 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by crossbeaux
Did anyone notice any lip sync problems last night (Wed)? I recorded Smallville on the HD channel and watched it today. About 45-50 minutes into the program, the sound started lagging behind the video enough to be noticable. I thought perhaps it was a 6412 problem so I went through the program again, sampling from the beginning.

-------------------------------------------------------------

Lack of audio/video sync is common from my Motorola 6200 digital box. Sometimes the audio is as much as 1 1/2 seconds ahead and sometimes it's behind. How much of this is due to the box itself or the way it's controled from Comcast or in the programming that's delivered to them, I don't know. Many of the problems that are reported in the 6412 are also occurring with my 6200. Until a week ago, it would frequently freeze on a channel and refuse to change. The only way to solve this was to turn it off and on, but often it wouldn't even turn off until after waiting 2 or 3 minutes. Recently, however, it seems to have straightened out and is flying right. Which leads me to think it's the control programming from Comcast that was behind this malfunction.
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post #827 of 4859 Old 02-03-2005, 04:40 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by Steve McD
-------------------------------------------------------------

Lack of audio/video sync is common from my Motorola 6200 digital box. Sometimes the audio is as much as 1 1/2 seconds ahead and sometimes it's behind. How much of this is due to the box itself or the way it's controled from Comcast or in the programming that's delivered to them, I don't know. Many of the problems that are reported in the 6412 are also occurring with my 6200. Until a week ago, it would frequently freeze on a channel and refuse to change. The only way to solve this was to turn it off and on, but often it wouldn't even turn off until after waiting 2 or 3 minutes. Recently, however, it seems to have straightened out and is flying right. Which leads me to think it's the control programming from Comcast that was behind this malfunction.

I had problems with my 6200 as well. But usually it wasn't an abrupt shift in the middle of a program. Plus I had reasoned that if it were a box problem, it would continue to affect what I watched, even if I watched the same thing over again. But that didn't happen. So I suppose the problem could have originated when the data was stored on the drive. Or it could be a broadcast issue.
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post #828 of 4859 Old 02-04-2005, 01:56 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by crossbeaux
Did anyone notice any lip sync problems last night (Wed)? I recorded Smallville on the HD channel and watched it today. About 45-50 minutes into the program, the sound started lagging behind the video enough to be noticable. I thought perhaps it was a 6412 problem so I went through the program again, sampling from the beginning. The beginning was OK, and the problems appeared at the same time as before. (I figured if it was a 6412 problem, replaying would show lip sync issues at the beginning where they weren't there before.) So I'm suspecting it was a transmission issue. Just checking to see if anyone else noticed.

I used to see this more frequently in the past, especially with the Tonight Show in HD. Because it only happened on select programs, I'm pretty sure the issue originated with the Comcast broadcast system. I suspect sometimes the bandwith gets squeezed, and this hurts the sync. timing. If this is the case, it would really have nothing to do with the box.
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post #829 of 4859 Old 02-05-2005, 01:41 PM
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I had exactly the same sync issue with Smallville on my 6412, at precisely the same time. Yeah, this would not appear to be a receiver issue.
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post #830 of 4859 Old 02-10-2005, 12:24 AM
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Were there a bunch of times the picture was lost in the feed for Lost tonight or is my 6412 having problems?
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post #831 of 4859 Old 02-10-2005, 08:40 AM
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Originally posted by doretta
Were there a bunch of times the picture was lost in the feed for Lost tonight or is my 6412 having problems?

I was having problems with Lost last night also- I doubt it is your box.
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post #832 of 4859 Old 02-10-2005, 08:40 AM
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no it was not your 6412. I saw the same thing
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post #833 of 4859 Old 02-10-2005, 09:43 PM
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Do you need digital service for the CableCard to give you HD channels? At one time, Comcast said NO, I could keep my analog and add the cable card. If all I wanted were Networks, PBS, and FOX, there would be no charge, and I only needed my analog service. Now they say I need Digital service for $9.95 more.



Quote:


Originally posted by doretta
Yep, I've had one since the end of July.

Picture quality--beware of weak signals. If your signal is marginal things may get worse after a cablecard is installed, analog picture quality may get grainy and you might see more digital dropouts. At least it seemed to work that way here. Comcast acknowledged my signal was weak and put an amplifier on the cable and everything has looked great ever since.

No monthly charge, they'll bill you if you cancel cable and fail to give it back, but that's the only financial liability.

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post #834 of 4859 Old 02-11-2005, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by mpsan
Do you need digital service for the CableCard to give you HD channels? At one time, Comcast said NO, I could keep my analog and add the cable card. If all I wanted were Networks, PBS, and FOX, there would be no charge, and I only needed my analog service. Now they say I need Digital service for $9.95 more.

Unfortunately, that's a marketing decision by Comcast and they can change what they say at any time. I already had digital cable so it wasn't an issue for me.

Where do you live and what kind of TV do you have? The channels you listed are all available OTA. I pick them up nicely with a <$30 Silver Sensor antenna on top of my TV. (Which I got because Comcast does not carry CBS or UPN in HD.) My cablecard ready TV has a tuner for OTA so the antenna was my only cost. There is a Portland OTA thread for learing about such things. http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...0&pagenumber=1
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post #835 of 4859 Old 02-11-2005, 11:17 AM
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mpsan:

The best way to check your OTA reception ability if you don't have an onboard digital tuner is to pick up an outboard tuner and antenna at Circuit City. Play with it for 20 -25 days. If you have no luck at all return it all for full refund and you'll be subject to whatever Comcast offers for HD. If you do get good signals (after the requisite tweaking), return the tuner and keep the antenna. CC makes it easy to perform trial and error.
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post #836 of 4859 Old 02-11-2005, 01:03 PM
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I live near Saltzman and Thompson in West Hills. I do NOT have an HD set yet, but was looking at a Panasonic Plasma for the bedroom. I have Analog cable, and at one point, was told that is OK. If the TV I was looking at had a ATSC tuner and CableCard I was all set. Then Comcast said I needed to upgrade to digital service. Some said $5 a month, others said $9.95 a month!

Quote:


Originally posted by doretta
Unfortunately, that's a marketing decision by Comcast and they can change what they say at any time. I already had digital cable so it wasn't an issue for me.

Where do you live and what kind of TV do you have? The channels you listed are all available OTA. I pick them up nicely with a <$30 Silver Sensor antenna on top of my TV. (Which I got because Comcast does not carry CBS or UPN in HD.) My cablecard ready TV has a tuner for OTA so the antenna was my only cost. There is a Portland OTA thread for learing about such things. http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...0&pagenumber=1

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post #837 of 4859 Old 02-11-2005, 01:08 PM
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Now that may work. I do not have an HD set yet. I have looked at the OTA group and they seem to have a ton of complaints about poor audio and pops, etc! Comcast is sure making it expensive! OK, for large TV that we will update later this year, but not too good for just a 42" Bedroom set.
That is why I thought of OTA for the bedroom set.


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Originally posted by ridgefamus
mpsan:

The best way to check your OTA reception ability if you don't have an onboard digital tuner is to pick up an outboard tuner and antenna at Circuit City. Play with it for 20 -25 days. If you have no luck at all return it all for full refund and you'll be subject to whatever Comcast offers for HD. If you do get good signals (after the requisite tweaking), return the tuner and keep the antenna. CC makes it easy to perform trial and error.

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post #838 of 4859 Old 02-11-2005, 01:30 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by mpsan
Now that may work. I do not have an HD set yet. I have looked at the OTA group and they seem to have a ton of complaints about poor audio and pops, etc! Comcast is sure making it expensive! OK, for large TV that we will update later this year, but not too good for just a 42" Bedroom set.
That is why I thought of OTA for the bedroom set.

So you know, you'll be subject to the same issues we are having with OTA, using Comcast. Comcast gets it's signal from the local stations.
Also don't let our comments in the OTA thread cloud your decision, for the most part things work quite well. KATU has been having some issues lately and if you notice, there have been comments about it in this thread too.
I'm still soundly of the opinion that HD with the occasional problems is still far better than no HD at all.

Earl
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post #839 of 4859 Old 02-11-2005, 01:56 PM
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mpspan:

Regarding what level of Comcast service is needed to receive HDTV programming ...

I have a friend here near Seattle with Comcast BASIC service ($13/month, analog channels 2-31 plus a few higher channels in 70's and 80's). He just installed a cable-ready HDTV (with integrated OTA and QAM cable tuners). Without any change in Comcast service, he receives the local HD channels over his cable connection (ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, WB, UPN, PBS).

It is my understanding that the cable companies are mandated to offer unencrypted local DTV/HDTV channels without any requirement for buying their digital packages, etc.

So, you should be able to use any QAM tuner (in a set-top box or built into an HDTV) along with your cheapest-available Comcast service (which I heard costs even <$13 in the Portland area) to get most local digital channels, recognizing that the local CBS station is not available on Comcast yet in Portland (we just got Seattle CBS a few days ago on Comcast, but different station owners than Portland with different issues).

An HD STB with OTA and QAM tuners can feed HD channels to a standard TV set by downrezzing from HD to SD and using S-video or composite or, in some cases, a standard F-type coax RF. That would be a way for you to try HD reception without investing the effort or money in a HDTV until you know it could work. Of course, you will not get the improved picture resolution of HD this way, but you will be able to verify what channels are available to you.

Circuit City and Best Buy will usually give a full refund for a return within 30 days of purchase.

Good luck!

Dave
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post #840 of 4859 Old 02-11-2005, 05:30 PM
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No, I have not given up yet. Looking for 42" in Bedroom and 70" in Theater room. They will be HD but I was trying to get a feel as to how important a CableCard slot was and how much Comcast would charge. Still would be great if OTA worked out.

Quote:


Originally posted by earletp
So you know, you'll be subject to the same issues we are having with OTA, using Comcast. Comcast gets it's signal from the local stations.
Also don't let our comments in the OTA thread cloud your decision, for the most part things work quite well. KATU has been having some issues lately and if you notice, there have been comments about it in this thread too.
I'm still soundly of the opinion that HD with the occasional problems is still far better than no HD at all.

Earl

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