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Discussion Starter #1
I hope this is the right forum for this; none of them seemed to fit, this was the closest.


So, up until about a month ago, everything was fine with my cable reception - I am on Comcast in Northern Virginia, using a SA8300HD DVR with my Mits HDTV. Then I noticed a problem on only two of the HD channels, the local NBC and CBS affiliates. The degree of the problem varied from a slight bit of pixelation to a great deal of picture breakup, to no picture at all. Looking at the diagnostics screen, I can see that these two channels share the same frequency, the signal level seems fine, but the S/N ratio is under 30 most of the time.


I waited a bit to see if things improved, they didn't, and so I called for service. Tech came out, and once I eliminated the easy fixes he wanted to push on me (amplified splitter ain't no good; STB not working properly), he checked some stuff, said the signal seemed good, suggested there might be a problem at the head end, and that he'd check with them and get back to me. Nearly a week passes, still a problem and no word from original tech, so called again.


Second guy comes out, tries to blame the splitter or the STB again, finally re-does the connection at the wall and outside at the junction box, and declares the problem must be with the lines in the house (could be, after all, they are 18-years-old - line runs from outside to the attic, split to the bedroom and the family room), and said he's schedule someone to come back and run a direct line to the family room.


Third guy shows up today, pokes a hole in my wall and runs a direct line, and guess what - that's right, still no better. I called back to complain, someone else is coming tomorrow (Friday) to check the outside lines.


So, in anticipation of this next guy possibly being as clueless as the first three, any ideas what might be going on and how to fix it? What should I ask the guy, and what should he be trying?


Thanks.


Tim
 

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Have they tried replacing the STB?

Pixelation is often caused by the data being sent at two low a bandwith by the sender.
 

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Discussion Starter #3

Quote:
Originally Posted by walford /forum/post/14264356


Have they tried replacing the STB?

Pixelation is often caused by the data being sent at two low a bandwith by the sender.

No, because the problem isn't in the STB. As the problem channels are the local HD ones, and my television has a QAM tuner in it, I am able to view those channels with the cable run directly into the TV set (in fact, one of the outputs from the amplified splitter does exactly that). When I do so, whether from the splitter or directly from the wall jack, the pixelation/loss of signal occurs for those two channels.


Tim
 

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Discussion Starter #5

Quote:
Originally Posted by walford /forum/post/14267749


Do you have the same problem if you use the STB to get the 2 local channels?

I thought it was clear in the original message, but I guess not. There is the problem when I run the signal through an amplified splitter to the STB, there is the problem when I run the signal through an amplified splitter directly to the TV, there is the problem when I run the signal directly to the STB from the wall jack, there is the problem when I run the signal directly to the TV from the wall jack, and there is the problem when I run the signal from the brand new wall jack installed by the cable tech from the outside cable hookup in all the above cases.


From this, my conclusion is the problem has to be outside the house, would you not agree? And if so, I was looking here for some thoughts about what the problem might be, and what the tech who is coming in the next three hours might want to look for.


Tim
 

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You sure its not the NBC and CBS networks broadcast. I have the same problem on only two of the HD channels, the NBC (sometimes) and CBS (mostly). The degree of my problem varies from a slight bit of pixelation (CBS) to a great deal of picture breakup I had before. I did replace The TWC STB (8300HD DVR) awhile back when there was DVR playback problems.
 

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I understand better now and I agree the problem is external to your home unless the tech can hook up another TV to your line and demonstrate that it does not have problems when your TV does.

It then appears to be a limited bandwidth arriving at your home problem by your cable provider.
 

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Discussion Starter #8

Quote:
Originally Posted by walford /forum/post/14269093


I understand better now and I agree the problem is external to your home unless the tech can hook up another TV to your line and demonstrate that it does not have problems when your TV does.

It then appears to be a limited bandwidth arriving at your home problem by your cable provider.

The tech has left, and I am both delighted and annoyed. I now have a length of cable in my yard waiting for the folks who bury the line to get to it, with a fabulous signal on the set. The guy told me there was a problem in the line between the street and the house, and that putting in the new line took care of it. When I asked him why the other three guys who were here before couldn't have found that, he said, "I don't know, it took less than 5 minutes to figure out the problem - when you've got 20 out there [pointing at the street] and only 2 over there [pointing at the side of the house], it isn't hard to figure out what is wrong."


So, I'm delighted that this guy fixed my problem. I'm annoyed that it took almost a month and 4 people to take care of it.


Tim
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ttfitz /forum/post/14269399


The tech has left, and I am both delighted and annoyed. I now have a length of cable in my yard waiting for the folks who bury the line to get to it, with a fabulous signal on the set. The guy told me there was a problem in the line between the street and the house, and that putting in the new line took care of it. When I asked him why the other three guys who were here before couldn't have found that, he said, "I don't know, it took less than 5 minutes to figure out the problem - when you've got 20 out there [pointing at the street] and only 2 over there [pointing at the side of the house], it isn't hard to figure out what is wrong."


So, I'm delighted that this guy fixed my problem. I'm annoyed that it took almost a month and 4 people to take care of it.


Tim

Glad to know that at least it is fixed. Question: How many of those techs were actual cable company employees & how many were sub-contractors (who are more interested in moving on than satisfying customers?


My guess is that the channels giving the problem were on a higher frequency QAM channel and thus more susceptible to cabling issues.
 

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Discussion Starter #10

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Originally Posted by davehancock /forum/post/14282243


Glad to know that at least it is fixed. Question: How many of those techs were actual cable company employees & how many were sub-contractors (who are more interested in moving on than satisfying customers?

That's a good question. I know the next to the last guy, the one who strung the new line from the outside box directly to my family room without helping anything at all, was a contractor, because he told me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by davehancock /forum/post/14282243


My guess is that the channels giving the problem were on a higher frequency QAM channel and thus more susceptible to cabling issues.

Good guess - I believe they were both on 723 MHz, which is pretty high up from what I've seen.


Tim
 
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