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Hello:


I use Comcast for my cable TV in the Boston area.

Have their basic analog package.

No Box or digital packages subscribed to.


Just received a new LCD HD digital TV as a gift.


Question: Should I be able to receive local HD programs (or any others ?) without purchasing a Comcast Box or subscribing to their Digital/HD program packages ? I believe the set has the QAM Tuner that folks have mentioned.


The reason I'm asking is that there are local channels broadcast in HD now, and there also seem to be several others, that imply they are in HD that the set "seems" to pick up.


But not sure if we are seeing them in HD or not ?

Maybe just seeing them "digitally," but not HD ?


Would appreciate your opinions on this.

Do you think we are getting HD on the local channels without the Comcast Converter Box and their higher cost digital/HD Packages ?


I tried calling Comcast re this, several times, but it is hopeless.

Seems to be something none of their reps truly knows anything about, or they just don't want to discuss it.


Thanks,

B.
 

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On many but not all cable systems, the local network affiliates and perhaps a few other "freebies" are carried on the cable in "clear QAM". If your set is QAM-capable, you can find and watch these channels by connecting the raw cable signal from the wall (or a split of it) directly to you sets antenna input, and then doing a scan. Consult your sets manual to find out which antenna jack, if there is more than one, and what settings in the scan menu might be needed.


Don't be surprised if the set finds hundreds of blank channels; those are the ones that are coded for conditional access (encrypted), but you should find your locals that way. Your scan will probably also find most or all of the SD analog "legacy" channels in the range of 2-80 or so. QAM channels carrying digital SD and HD programming typically run from about 80 to 125 or so.


Also don't be surprised if the set-indicated "channel" is an unintuitive number like "103.58". That is usually the raw QAM channel (e.g. 103) and the subchannel (e.g. 58) which unfortunately bear no resemblance to either the over-the-air or CATV STB channel number. You may then have to manually delete the unwanted blank channels, or move the usable ones into a "favorites" area for more convenient tuning.


A few enlightened cable systems pass through or add metadata that will identify the source or "real" channel number, but so far that's not common. They'd rather rent you a digital/HD STB which will map the QAM channels to a number that corresponds to their published lineup.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Satori84 /forum/post/13001907


On many but not all cable systems, the local network affiliates and perhaps a few other "freebies" are carried on the cable in "clear QAM". If your set is QAM-capable, you can find and watch these channels by connecting the raw cable signal from the wall (or a split of it) directly to you sets antenna input, and then doing a scan.

These days, most all cableco's have local HD in the clear, as you note receivable by a QAM tuner. Comcast offers all HD locals in the clear.
 

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i called Comcast serveral weeks ago and asked for a list of QAM channel #s. The answer was "we don't have that information available for you"
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlcrouch /forum/post/13003337


i called Comcast serveral weeks ago and asked for a list of QAM channel #s. The answer was "we don't have that information available for you"

Just let the tv do a scan. In my area, ATLANTA, they move them around sometimes.
 

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We have analog 100 channel expanded cable package and we have been unable to detect any HD programming regardless of whatever digital tuner we connect the cable feed to. Now that I have read these posts I will re-try with both our set-top-box receiver and the tuner in our HD tv.


Have you thought about connecting your set's digital tuner to an over-the-air antenna and enjoy the less compressed high quality HD programming from your local network broadcasters?


We will be watching the Super Bowl via our "free" OTA HD and it's always there even if there is a cable failure.


We just aren't ready to buy in to our cable or cat providers HD "upgrade" for now. Our RP HD tv upgrades DirecTV pretty good but the analog cable output is so bad the tv can't do much with it.

goodluck
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlcrouch /forum/post/13003337


i called Comcast serveral weeks ago and asked for a list of QAM channel #s. The answer was "we don't have that information available for you"

Most CSR's aren't aware of the QAM channels.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by imjay /forum/post/13004681


We have analog 100 channel expanded cable package and we have been unable to detect any HD programming regardless of whatever digital tuner we connect the cable feed to.

There are different types of digital tuners. The over-the-air tuner can be called ATSC, 8VSB, or DTV (Digital TV). None of these work for cable.


For HD on cable, you need a QAM tuner, and as already noted most likely the only channels you'll find after doing a channel scan are the HD locals.
 

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I have a TV with ATSC,NTSC and QAM. I want to use the TV tuner instead of the STB. Is there a CableCARD reader that is not a Tuner. Something that will decode the signal from the cable company and then my TV's tuner will pick it up. That way I just need one remote. I also installed a A/B switch to go back and forth from Cable and OTA.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by CajunViper /forum/post/13048213


I have a TV with ATSC,NTSC and QAM. I want to use the TV tuner instead of the STB. Is there a CableCARD reader that is not a Tuner. Something that will decode the signal from the cable company and then my TV's tuner will pick it up.

What you're asking for does not exist, and is not technically feasible due to the way CableCARD works. It's not a disk/memory card; it's a streaming decryption engine, which the captured bitstream has to be run through to yield an unencrypted stream which can then be fed into the appropriate decoding/display logic. The closest thing would be either (a) a TiVo Series3 (now discontinued) or TiVo HD DVR (which involves a monthly fee), or (b) Sony's DHG-HDD250/500 DVR (also discontinued). Far as I know, there aren't any other widely-available CableCARD set-top box devices, other than the cableco boxes - given that was the intent of CableCARD (to make anyone's box able to receive digital cable), it's a little bit funny.
 

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Thanks demonfoo, that answers my question.

I saw that there is a ATI cableCARD reader that sends the signal

to a computer and you use Windows Media.

Maybe they will make one for the HD TV's.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by CajunViper /forum/post/13048813


Thanks demonfoo, that answers my question.

I saw that there is a ATI cableCARD reader that sends the signal

to a computer and you use Windows Media.

Maybe they will make one for the HD TV's.

No, that just sucks in the QAM signal off the cable, decrypts a QAM bundle, pulls the appropriate streams out, and feeds the raw MPEG-2 bitstream to the host PC; might as well just get the cableco box then.
 

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is I have 8 TV's in my house.


Comcast is telling me they will give me 2 free converter boxes to allow me to see channels 33-82. I already have one HD digital cable box. But, for the other 5 TV's I have, Comcast is saying I will have to pay $1.99 a month per TV to be able to see channels 33-82 ortherwise I just get 2-32.


I think this is total BS. This means to keep the tv's getting what I had before all this, I will have to pay $125 a year when again I paid ZERO.


Is there anyway around this?
 

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I'm interested in the discussion in this thread.


I currently subscribe to comcast HD digital package with one HD box to my main tv, two DTA boxes for regular TVs for the kids, 1 regular Box (with on demand) for the garage.


The problem is, I have another HDTV in my own bedroom without any boxes at all. I just plugged in the comcast coaxal and scanned the channels. I'm getting quite a bit of digital channels and some HD channels, but most of them have no channel info and I can't find any guides listing them.


In the bay area (california), these were the HD digital channels I found:

(with the comcast coaxal cable connected directly to my HDTV input)


2-1 KTVU HD

4-2 KRON HD

5-1 KPIX HD

7-1 KGO HD

7-2 LIVWELL HD

9-1 KQED HD

9-5 KIDS HD

11-1 KNTV HD

36-1 KICU HD

44-1 KBCW HD


There seems to be a ton of digital channels as well in standard definition such as TNT SD on 83-7, 83-8 ESPN SD, and so on...


It would be nice to get a program/channel guide. I'd like to know if any of the network HD channels are available without needing an HD box from comcast.


I'll follow this thread to see if anything new pops up.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neosum /forum/post/17328853



It would be nice to get a program/channel guide.

You'll need a box of some kind, either from Comcast or a CableCARD host device.

Quote:
I'd like to know if any of the network HD channels are available without needing an HD box from comcast.

Nope.

Quote:
I'll follow this thread to see if anything new pops up.

Like what? Nothing has changed, and nothing is going to change.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neosum /forum/post/17328853


I'm interested in the discussion in this thread.


I currently subscribe to comcast HD digital package with one HD box to my main tv, two DTA boxes for regular TVs for the kids, 1 regular Box (with on demand) for the garage.


The problem is, I have another HDTV in my own bedroom without any boxes at all. I just plugged in the comcast coaxal and scanned the channels. I'm getting quite a bit of digital channels and some HD channels, but most of them have no channel info and I can't find any guides listing them.


In the bay area (california), these were the HD digital channels I found:

(with the comcast coaxal cable connected directly to my HDTV input)


2-1 KTVU HD

4-2 KRON HD

5-1 KPIX HD

7-1 KGO HD

7-2 LIVWELL HD

9-1 KQED HD

9-5 KIDS HD

11-1 KNTV HD

36-1 KICU HD

44-1 KBCW HD


There seems to be a ton of digital channels as well in standard definition such as TNT SD on 83-7, 83-8 ESPN SD, and so on...


It would be nice to get a program/channel guide. I'd like to know if any of the network HD channels are available without needing an HD box from comcast.


I'll follow this thread to see if anything new pops up.

The best you can do is this: http://www.silicondust.com/hdhomerun/channels_us


You can't get this information from Comcast, they don't want you to have it. By having the channel list screwed up on clear QAM tuners, it encourages consumers to rent a comcast box. This is the same reason that Comcast customer service representatives have no clue when you mention clear QAM.


You can't get it from someone else in the bay area, because the channel layout is different in different areas. The list at the above link may or may not be correct for your system as quite often there is more than one layout in a zipcode.


If you have a MythTV setup in a computer with an internal tuner card, there is a program you can run that will extract an incomplete list (it ignores all of the HD channels because the free STBs provided by Comcast can't handle them) of channel numbers, subchannel numbers, call sign and Comcast numbers, but it is not particularly easy to set up and use. In my case, it also comes up with 5 different lists with no indication which is the correct one.


I would suggest you manually go through, find an unidentified channel on your clear QAM turner TV, then channel surf the cable box until you find the same channel, and build a list of channel mappings for your clear QAM TV.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAP /forum/post/17332034


The best you can do is this: http://www.silicondust.com/hdhomerun/channels_us

Silicon Dust is a poor resource; most locations are not even close to accurate.

Quote:
You can't get this information from Comcast, they don't want you to have it. By having the channel list screwed up on clear QAM tuners, it encourages consumers to rent a comcast box. This is the same reason that Comcast customer service representatives have no clue when you mention clear QAM.

?


Where do you get these ideas? From the fliers the black helicopters drop in your neighborhood?


You give Comcast way too much credit. It's not a conspiracy, they simply don't have the ability to update the CSR's, who for the most part don't know what QAM is anyway, because QAM users represent such a small part of their subscribers.
 

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I am not aware of any Comcast location that does not broadcast local OTA channels usigng clear QAM since the digital cutover. Prior to the cutover some comcast locations suchn as Chicago and Atlantaq and others encryted all of their QAM programs since OTA analog was still aviable from the broadcasters.

It is true that Comcast in many locations does not broadcast the same "channel name" as part of it's PSIP information that is used by the OTA digital broadcast so a user had to map each of these channels separatly in his clear QAM tuner as decribed by DAP in his post.

I get local HD digial chanels in HD clear QAM from a direct cable connecion to my clear QAM capable HDTV without any cable box involved from Cox cable.
 
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