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Discussion Starter #26,961
I hear a rumor that my cable company (TWC) is going to end all analog in the next 6 months and the digital will be encrypted. They will give me a free DTA box that will have SD composite video and audio out. Has anybody ever figured out how to make the Mag change channels on the DTA box so I can still do timer recordings?
Not that I know of.
 

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Since your antenna seems to be working OK, you can get any new flat-screen TV at Walmart or elsewhere. I use 4 Vizio LCD/LED flat screens from Walmart. My latest "smart TV" had some problems but I bought the Walmart extended warranty and they came twice to fix it, ending up replacing ALL the internal circuit boards and power supply on 2nd trip... no cost and got an essentially a new TV! (Flat screens appear to be just a system of circuit boards!) Just make sure it has an ATSC/antenna tuner, and a cable-QAM tuner (for the future?) which most if not all have.

My 3 other Vizios have worked great for years, but the repair guy said to stay away from Vizio and buy a LG or other brand. He says he repairs a LOT of Vizios, but only one LG!??? And buy the extended warranty.

You'd connect the antenna to the Mag, then coax out to the TV and HDMI out (or any other line connection the TV and Mag have)... simple. You'll be in an all-digital world.
Thanks I was thinking of buy the Vizio bcz of the price, I will have to see what the deals are for December at Walmart before I buy, but this is the month I need the TV. I wish I could have made the sales yesterday.
 

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Discussion Starter #26,965
Do you know if the designers ever plan to add a "blaster" for this reason?
I've not heard or read of anything re: adding an IR blaster to Mag units. But you never know since they've just recently got into HD DVRs for North America.
 

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I hear a rumor that my cable company (TWC) is going to end all analog in the next 6 months and the digital will be encrypted. They will give me a free DTA box that will have SD composite video and audio out. Has anybody ever figured out how to make the Mag change channels on the DTA box so I can still do timer recordings?
I'm in Charlotte, NC area. TWC went all digital here several months ago. The DTA is free for 1 year, then 2 bucks a month after that. SD out is coax to tv cable in, also comes with an HDMI cable to send high def to tv HDMI in, no composite out. The only way to change channels other than with a remote would be with some type of IR blaster on a timer synced to the recorder schedule. It's time to retire these boxes and get a dvr from the cable company. 2 or more tunners recording true HD. 15 bucks a month x 2 tunners = 2 Maggie's . Can rent many months for that amount, plus free replacement if there's a hardware problem. Swallow your "I only purchase" pride and do it. These boxes will soon be useful for only OTA recording !
 

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If I could get my hands on the encryption key, is there anybody who came up with a way to enter in into the Mag so I can use the digital tuner it already has to work right from the cable?
 

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That would be impossible. I would follow that good advice and get a STB or DVR from TWC. A second, but less desirable solution would be a TiVo. That choice, while more flexible and powerful, is also more complicated (due to TWC) and probably more expensive. I keep my 515H since my Brother-in-law likes me to burn DVDs from his camcorder. That is also used less since the camcorder is HD and he can play them through his TV.
 

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I'm in Durham, NC and when TWC encrypted everything I faced the same dilemma. I took a different route, I cut the cable and put an antenna in the attic. I still pay TWC for internet, bringing my TWC bill down to $50 a month for 50Mbps service. I continue to use a Mag 513 plus a HomeWorx HW150. I did have to retire a Panasonic EH50.
I'm eyeing the Mag 867/868 now, both have dual tuners.
 

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I wouldn't say impossible, just improbable. If some "black hat" got his hands on the source code for the machine, he could add a way to do un-encryption. But if such a thing has happened, I would need to know my way around the "Dark Net" to find it and I don't know my way around that world.
 

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I wouldn't say impossible, just improbable. If some "black hat" got his hands on the source code for the machine, he could add a way to do un-encryption. But if such a thing has happened, I would need to know my way around the "Dark Net" to find it and I don't know my way around that world.
There's this thing called a cable card. If someone can duplicated its function in software, then add that software to a Magnavox, they would be very very rich or in jail.

Even cable company supplied devices use these cards. There is a lot of stuff going on right now to eliminate the cable card.
 

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I wouldn't say impossible, just improbable.
No, impossible -- same as adding an IR blaster to a box that was never designed with the hardware to have that feature.
 

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There's this thing called a cable card. If someone can duplicated its function in software, then add that software to a Magnavox, they would be very very rich or in jail.
Not to mention that the code in each cable card varies with the issuing cable company.
 
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I hear a rumor that my cable company (TWC) is going to end all analog in the next 6 months and the digital will be encrypted. They will give me a free DTA box that will have SD composite video and audio out. Has anybody ever figured out how to make the Mag change channels on the DTA box so I can still do timer recordings?
After the switchover happens, go to your local TWC office and talk to a rep about getting a standard (full-size) decoder box instead of the near-useless DTA. Unlike most other cable companies, TWC still has an 8-event timer setting feature in its standard decoder box software. The timer can be set up to six days in advance: you press a button to bring up the program listings grid, scroll to the dates and channels your shows are on, click on each show and set "reminder". The box will then automatically switch itself to the correct channel for each show you programmed (leave the box turned on at 24/7). You also need to separately set the timer of your Magnavox as usual, except instead of a channel number all timers in the Mag should be for "line input 1" (on the back panel, which connects to the decoder box).

There is a monthly fee for the full-size decoder box of approx $11. Depending how lucky you are in talking to a TWC rep, that will be the only extra charge. Most reps will insist on changing your service plan tier before they will provide the full-size decoder: in some cases that may up your monthly bill by $20 or more. Whether it is worth that much to get the cable box auto-channel-change feature is a personal decision. Note both the DTA and the full-size decoder box output letterboxed 4:3 video instead of the true 16:9 anamorphic you may have been pulling thru the Mag built-in tuner: this drawback + the expense of upgrading the decoder box tends to make people reconsider their commitment to DVD recorders.

As wajo has mentioned here many times, the "encryption armageddon" tactic used by cablecos is unpredictable. After the switchover, you might still be able to tune quite a few channels with the Mag built-in tuner, and only need the DTA for a couple outlier channels. Depends on the cable system and how far they go in encrypting your neighborhood. Wait until they insist on hooking up the DTA, then you can do some tests to find out if you can manage without the full-size decoder box.

If you DO decide to go with a full-size decoder, don't accept the TWC Cisco-brand box: it has awful standard-def video outputs (worse quality than the DTA). Ask for the Samsung or Scientific Atlanta, these are much better.
 

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@CitiBear

This is most informative. TWC's "official" statement is that they will no longer support customer owned DVRs. But if I can get a decoder box that has an event timer, I'm set. Yes, it will be a pain in the *** to program both the box and the Mag and another pain to keep both clocks set exactly the same, but this is "doable".

I was even considering getting two DTA boxes since the Mag has two sets of auxiliary inputs for a two channel timer record capability but the full size box gets me an all channel capability again!

I know some people have said just get the TWC DVR and put the Mag in the closet. But the TWC DVR has a 200 hour maximum and the Mag over 1,000 hours so there is reason to stay with the Mag.

Thanks for "arming" me with the proper "ammunition" to go back to TWC!

Marty

www.linkedin.com/pub/martin-risso/71/599/a09
 

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@CitiBear

This is most informative. TWC's "official" statement is that they will no longer support customer owned DVRs. But if I can get a decoder box that has an event timer, I'm set. Yes, it will be a pain in the *** to program both the box and the Mag and another pain to keep both clocks set exactly the same, but this is "doable".

I was even considering getting two DTA boxes since the Mag has two sets of auxiliary inputs for a two channel timer record capability but the full size box gets me an all channel capability again!

I know some people have said just get the TWC DVR and put the Mag in the closet. But the TWC DVR has a 200 hour maximum and the Mag over 1,000 hours so there is reason to stay with the Mag.

Thanks for "arming" me with the proper "ammunition" to go back to TWC!

Marty

www.linkedin.com/pub/martin-risso/71/599/a09
 

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@CitiBear

This is most informative. TWC's "official" statement is that they will no longer support customer owned DVRs. But if I can get a decoder box that has an event timer, I'm set. Yes, it will be a pain in the *** to program both the box and the Mag and another pain to keep both clocks set exactly the same, but this is "doable".

I was even considering getting two DTA boxes since the Mag has two sets of auxiliary inputs for a two channel timer record capability but the full size box gets me an all channel capability again!

I know some people have said just get the TWC DVR and put the Mag in the closet. But the TWC DVR has a 200 hour maximum and the Mag over 1,000 hours so there is reason to stay with the Mag.

Thanks for "arming" me with the proper "ammunition" to go back to TWC!

Marty

www.linkedin.com/pub/martin-risso/71/599/a09
Cable card is still the law of the land. So they have to support customer owned DVRs.

My "customer owned DVR" on cable records thousands of hours (whatever you can get on a 4TB hard drive) and is essentially free to operate. Realize that your own DVR could have 4-6 tuners, full HD, full guide (no timers required), recording space limited only by the size of your wallet, all major streaming services, is multi-room, etc. I'd much rather consider that option than continue limping along with DTAs or crappy cable boxes and all the fees that go with them. The tiny cost difference doesn't justify all that pain.
 

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On a 515, is there any way to see if an in-progress recording is record-once?

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Cable card is still the law of the land. So they have to support customer owned DVRs.

My "customer owned DVR" on cable records thousands of hours (whatever you can get on a 4GB hard drive).
Wow - I'd love to get a look at your compression algorithm!
 
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