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rcrevolution

join:2009-06-17
Bridgeport, CT

Does comcast also scramble digital channels now?

I currently have Cablevision and I moving to a comcats area.

Cablevision had recently claimed that they were making a switch to digital cable and that many of their channels would require a digital cable box to be watched. so channels like mtv tlc syfy, etc now arent there.

my question is did comcast do the same thing, or can I still rent two HD boxes for the primary tvs and then run a single cable from the splitter directly to a digital tv with no box and still watch all those channels, or are they not gonna be there just like on cablevisions service?

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
Anything that is not a local broadcast, or WGN, PBS, is encrypted. Did you expect something for nothing?

Curlee

join:2009-07-17
Issaquah, WA
reply to rcrevolution
We went through the Comcast digital conversion about the same time as the U.S. Digital Transition, and at least for now, everything SD is available in the clear in QAM. But that could change without notice.

rcrevolution

join:2009-06-17
Bridgeport, CT
reply to huhh8
no, but id expect that if I am paying that much per month for tv that they would at least allow the subscriber to watch standard definition tv without having to rent $6/m boxes.

RalphKramden

join:2007-01-10
Newtown, PA
reply to huhh8
said by huhh8:

Anything that is not a local broadcast, or WGN, PBS, is encrypted. Did you expect something for nothing?
That is currently NOT true in the Philly burbs. Everything that was avaialble via analog (plus a few extra channels) is currently available via clear QAM. Nice, but as Curlee said, it may not last. When they start encrypting, you will need a box for every TV. I recently received a DTA for my old Sony, no charge, and it works great AND I get more channels than I did with the analog hookup.

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
If you look at the allowed channels, those channels in the open have always been in the open as prev analogs.


rrlover

join:2001-03-25
Marlborough, CT
reply to rcrevolution
said by rcrevolution:

I currently have Cablevision and I moving to a comcats area.

Cablevision had recently claimed that they were making a switch to digital cable and that many of their channels would require a digital cable box to be watched. so channels like mtv tlc syfy, etc now arent there.

my question is did comcast do the same thing, or can I still rent two HD boxes for the primary tvs and then run a single cable from the splitter directly to a digital tv with no box and still watch all those channels, or are they not gonna be there just like on cablevisions service?
in areas that Comcast claims is all digitial you need at least a DTA to get expanded basic channels (ususally channel 20-99). digitial TVs with QAM will no longer be able to get those channels free. the only channels you will get is local networks/pbs.

comcast does provide 2 free DTAs in those areas. the DTAs only provide for those channels and 2-3 in the 100s. DTAs do not provide HD/VOD/TV GUIDE feature. cost is $1.99 @ month for each box beyond the 2 free.


joetaxpayer
I'M Here Till Thursday

join:2001-09-07
Sudbury, MA
said by rrlover:

in areas that Comcast claims is all digital you need at least a DTA to get expanded basic channels (usually channel 20-99). digitial TVs with QAM will no longer be able to get those channels free. the only channels you will get is local networks/pbs.
Funny, just got off another on line chat with Comcast and agent told me that my two non-carded tivos would continue to tune right through extended basic as they do now. I've now had three chats in two days, and know less now than I did on Monday.

neufuse

join:2006-12-06
James Creek, PA
extended basic is analog, so yes that is correct, but if any channels move to digital starter then you have a problem if the channel is not clear qam

andyross
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-04
Schaumburg, IL
reply to rcrevolution
In areas where they are rolling out DTA's, the expanded basic channels should be available in ClearQAM. In the future, Comcast may enable privacy mode, which scrambles the video and audio. (If it's similar to what I used to see for OnDemand porn, the TV tries to tune it, but just shows green blocks or freeze-frame of a previous channel that slowly shuffles and shimmers.)

The drawback of not having a DTA is that the channel numbers may be weird. You'll have to get used to numbers like 86-15, 86-12, etc.. instead of 45, 47.... The DTA's read a channel map so they can use regular numbers.

ak3883

join:2005-08-20
Portsmouth, RI
reply to rcrevolution
See this tread:
»[DTA] Sony XBR TV and DTA

Basically, they won't be scrambled(and can't be for current DTAs to even work), but once Comcast/Pace gets a waiver from the FCC, they will be "scrambled" and you will need at least a DTA on every TV.

This is only for areas that are transitioning to all digital or already have, areas that have not transitioned yet and are not giving out DTAs, those areas still have all channels but locals/basic encrypted.


joetaxpayer
I'M Here Till Thursday

join:2001-09-07
Sudbury, MA
reply to andyross
said by andyross:

In areas where they are rolling out DTA's, the expanded basic channels should be available in ClearQAM. In the future, Comcast may enable privacy mode, which scrambles the video and audio.
This is what I am hoping is the case for now. I wonder if I can trade back the DTAs for cards?

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
No, a Cable card takes the place of a box, not a DTA.


rrlover

join:2001-03-25
Marlborough, CT
reply to rcrevolution
My area of CT, as of Aug 28 will be all digital for the expanded basic and TVs will need a DTA, cablecard or regular STB to get those channels.

Comcast states (again in my area) that even TVs with QAM turners will NOT be able to get those channels (20-99) w/o a box or card from them. thats what was told to me by letter and email.

this is not in all areas to date.

ak3883

join:2005-08-20
Portsmouth, RI
Come back here on Aug 29th and tell us the results of a QAM scan on your TV.


heat84
Bit Torrent Apologist

join:2004-03-11
Fort Lauderdale, FL
reply to rcrevolution
Since the day broadcast analog was killed this is what my QAM tuner picks up:»www.silicondust.com/hdhomerun/li···p_477553

Well the line-up's changed a few times since then. I guess what they're doing is like they did with analog where you didn't need a box to get the channels on the lowest tier. Anyone with a digital cable ready TV can get the Digital Starter Extra tier without a box.


joetaxpayer
I'M Here Till Thursday

join:2001-09-07
Sudbury, MA
said by heat84:

Since the day broadcast analog was killed this is what my QAM tuner picks up:»www.silicondust.com/hdhomerun/li···p_477553

Anyone with a digital cable ready TV can get the Digital Starter Extra tier without a box.
Well, Heat, I think this answers my question, thanks, finally an answer I understand. Now it's a matter of getting TiVo and Comcast talking to provide the guide data. But even without that, the TiVo should work to surf channels and manually record. Again, thanks. I'll know in January what I get.

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
reply to heat84
Keep in mind, every market is different. Some only get the basic line up, with the HD for the the local origination stations, nothing extra.


joetaxpayer
I'M Here Till Thursday

join:2001-09-07
Sudbury, MA
said by huhh8:

Keep in mind, every market is different. Some only get the basic line up, with the HD for the the local origination stations, nothing extra.
Wouldn't all DTA tunable channels be QAM tunable on the TiVo or TV?
If it's only basic lineup then how can DTA help those with dig starter?

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
Only what is offered in the market Open QAM is what the DTA will have avail. Keep in mind, a DTA is the same as a QAM tuner in newer sets. Its purpose is for those parties that have a older NTSC tuner only set to be able to pick up those channels in Digital, that can only be picked up by a QAM set.


joetaxpayer
I'M Here Till Thursday

join:2001-09-07
Sudbury, MA
said by huhh8:

Only what is offered in the market Open QAM is what the DTA will have avail.
Just reconfirmed with CC on chat that Dig Starter will remain unencrypted.

She also offered that if I were surfing, I'd also see any unencrypted VOD on my node. Of course I can't order it, but if my neighbor does, there it is. Strange. Not that I'd spend any time surfing for VOD.

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
CSRs do not know doo doo, so really it did not accomplish anything.


heat84
Bit Torrent Apologist

join:2004-03-11
Fort Lauderdale, FL

3 edits
reply to rcrevolution

Why not send the channel and program data too?

Since they're unencrypting digital starter, why don't they send the channel and program data for those channels? Maybe they will eventually. Is that encrypted? I get it for a few of the local channels.

Why are they moving the channels around? FNC was 104.32 until yesterday. Now its 103.32? They moved WGN from 105.25 to 115.25. Those are a couple examples but there's more.

andyross
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-04
Schaumburg, IL
It's not the entire digital starter level being encrypted. I assume some Digital starters that are not broadcast (typically broadcast subchannels) and not in standard/expanded will remain encrypted.

Welcome to the fun world of ClearQAM. They will often rearrange the frequencies as analogs are removed, or if there are other issues. Sometimes they just swap sets of channels. You don't notice this with a cable box or DTA, as they use a channel map sent to convert 'normal' numbers to the correct frequency and subchannel.


caster665

@sbcglobal.net
all OTA stuff is not encrypted and at there ota numbers

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
said by caster665 :

all OTA stuff is not encrypted and at there ota numbers
We are not talking about OTA. The conversation is about CATV providers encrypting their provided telecasts, whether it is from a Local broadcaster, or anything in the Basic/Expanded lineup. If OTA was encrypted, then there would have to be a box (ie STB) to decrypt the OTA.


joetaxpayer
I'M Here Till Thursday

join:2001-09-07
Sudbury, MA
said by huhh8:

said by caster665 :

all OTA stuff is not encrypted and at there ota numbers
We are not talking about OTA. The conversation is about CATV providers encrypting their provided telecasts, whether it is from a Local broadcaster, or anything in the Basic/Expanded lineup. If OTA was encrypted, then there would have to be a box (ie STB) to decrypt the OTA.
I read caster to mean "any OTA channels provided on cable cannot be encrypted, and they appear (on cable) as the same number as their broadcast version."

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
The CATV providers are encrypting everything. Only thing that CATV providers need to provide under cur. reg's is a way to watch the programming (Free DTA, STB if you wish to pay for more).


joetaxpayer
I'M Here Till Thursday

join:2001-09-07
Sudbury, MA
said by huhh8:

The CATV providers are encrypting everything.
I don't know their long term intentions, but for the next set of changes, this is not true. The Digital starter offering remains unencrypted QAM from all that I've seen.

huhh8

join:2009-07-31
Market to market is different. Some are encrypting, while others are not.