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New Visitor
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎02-20-2010

Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I picked up a cable card from my local Comcast service center.  Upon trying to activate it by phone, I was informed by a Comcast representative that I was given the wrong card -- I need a single-stream but was given a multi-stream. Upon returning the card and requesting the proper single-stream card, I was informed that single-stream cards are no longer available, nor would they ever be again.

Is this a joke?  So is Comcast just not compatible with TiVo or something?  I have had nothing but issue after issue with Comcast and its customer service from day one.  A technician is supposed to be fixing the issue tomorrow, but I really have no confidence in Comcast at this point.  Nothing ever works as it should, so why expect anything different?

Cable Expert
WarEagle57
Posts: 10,676
Registered: ‎12-31-2004

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Multi-stream cards are backward compatible -- that is, they will work in place of single-stream cards.

New Visitor
34jj
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎04-23-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I would like know how to make an M-Card work.  My Sony WEGA in an old one-way host (in addition to being single stream).  It recognized a card, tries to run setup and returns a copy protection error and says to contact my cable provider because the card is invalid.  The cablecard menu does not provide the pairing data.  Had a tech out here and he couldn't get any better results.

Contributor
Posts: 24
Registered: ‎07-02-2003

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I tried to put in an M card into my Sony WEGA today. This is going to be the spare TV and I'm not buying a box for it, but the card is supposed to give me the channels I pay for (unlike the dta). I did get it to partially work in that I get some channels, but it appears to be limited channels (major netwroks). No espn, no comedy, no tbs. I do get HD of the networks so at least I got that far.

 

Nobody on the phone knows for sure it it's the card, or the Tv or what.

 

My menu is not providing the pairing data (host ID etc). It says "this information is not available"

I have gotten the copyright protection error, but I still do get the limited channels.

 

M cards are supposed to be backward compatible, and I don't know why I get some channles but not other. The women on the phone in India weren't very helpful, but I called again hoping to get them to mail me an "s" card instead of an "M". The man I finally got In Delaware was much easier to speak to. He agrees it is probably the card, and I might need an "s". None of my branches stock it, but he seems to think the techs can get it at the warehouse.

 

I am doubtful they will show up with an "S" card. I doubt I will get someone with real knowledge though I was told they are all trained...training and knowledge are not always the same thing...

 

Without the pairing data I will never get the other channels. Nobody can tell me why the pairing data doesn't show up.

 

Anybody ever have luck putting a cablecard in a TV? It's such a good idea (no box!) but it never caught on.

Bronze Problem Solver
barbie123
Posts: 4,027
Registered: ‎10-18-2008

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Where did you get the M card? Was this card scanned onto your account?  You are right that M cards have replaced the S cards and should be backward compatible. Are you calling the cablecard number? 877-405-2298 The main number will not be any help. 

Contributor
Posts: 24
Registered: ‎07-02-2003

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I got it at my local comcast service center and I signed for it. When I called she did find it on the account. I called the number that was in the self install packet for the cable card. Just checked and it is the 877-4-5-2298 number.

 

Found my receipt for receiving the box. I assume this # is the serial #, PKGTDGWXC...or maybe not, but its the number in the space under where it says issued boxes and returened boxes. It doesn't list what the item was. It's an older M card, dated 2008. I think it was scientific atlanta, though it's not in front of me. It is multi stream and it is green. Maybe it is simply defective.

Bronze Problem Solver
barbie123
Posts: 4,027
Registered: ‎10-18-2008

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I would take that card back and swap it for another. Have them scan it onto your account and start all over again. Cards can and do work, they just have to be set up correctly. Good luck.

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Its. me again (anon959) for some reason I couldn't login as that....

Tech brought out 2 more M cards....same result. He had little clue about cable cards and his supv on the phone basically said I need an S card so too bad tough luck there are none.

 

Called again and was advised my tv is too old. (it is 8...and it's not like it was the last of it's kind..it's new enough to have hdmi and hd etc..) He didn't bother to try to figure out a solution beyond get a new tv or pay for a box.

 

I beleive it is the firmware in the cards. I don't think they successfully update and have probably been laying around the comcat office. I picked up 3 more today with same result. The girl said digital wasn't listed on all my outlets so she added it, but it didn't help. She at least tried to help.

 

I have all the diagnostic codes etc and maybe there is someone at Comcast who knows what they mean. The man on the phone 2 days ago didn't even ask. He babble on about frequencies and how technology changes so fast and didn't care whether I got my channels, saying Comcast only has to provide the signal.

 

I get "copy protection error" call your compnay and report an invalid cablecard. No real reason from COmcast why I get that. The copy protect error shows up AFTER the tv tells me it found 526 channels, then it says  "searching", then the copy protect error.

I get internal secure micro serial #, (with #'s) secure software vers 3.14, then it says "waiting for update" under that....SO I don't think the card gets updated. why?

 

ANybody have any ideas? I do get a MAC address....

Bronze Problem Solver
barbie123
Posts: 4,027
Registered: ‎10-18-2008

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Might there be a firmware update for the tv? Are you calling the cablecard number? Try asking Sony if an M card will work.Thats all I got.

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I called Sony once and got not much info beyond unplug the tv etc....

I called the cablecard number. I will try Sony again tomorrow. I wish I knew it there was a Comcast person somewhere who actually knows anything. There are a lot of codes I can give them, but I don't know if they mean anything....

 

I still think it could be Comcast end....due to copy protection error and my TV obviously is reading the card and giving me channels 2-20 and the HD versions of same.

Bronze Star Contributor
sammsterling
Posts: 242
Registered: ‎04-14-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

maybe you can get a free cable box out of them.  tell them they cant get the card to work in your tv and you want a free box.  else it will be $9.95.  they might give you a $5 promo for a year.  it might be easier this way..... 

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Chatted with Sony. There are no firmware updates and says cable company provides host id...Actually she wrote to contact cablecard manufacturer to get host id....so I don't know....

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Sam, I tried that and the arrogant guy said it was my tv's fault for being so out of date and he was no use. I did file an FCC complaint on the website to see what I'm actually entitled to. They really haven't tried very hard to make this work for me. They sent one less than knolwedgable tech and I don't even know if I got upper level tech support. I will try that next.

Bronze Star Contributor
sammsterling
Posts: 242
Registered: ‎04-14-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

send an email here and explain the problem and a short history:

 

corporate_communications@comcast.com

 

yes, this is comcast corporate.  you will get a response....it works....i know...again, happy holidays

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Thanks Sammm, I sent off an email. I'll post back if I get a response. Thanks

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I did receive a call from Corporate, I think it was the complaint and compliment department in Delaware. Josh tried to get my card to cooperate, but he couldn't do to much. He said he'd have a tech come out and says this tech should be able to get an S-card from a warehouse. He didn't seem to think there weren't any out there. He said they will talk to the field supv to make sure a tech is assigned who knows what they are doing with the cards. I still think it is a problem in the cards programming so.....I'll post back after they come on Friday.

Gold Problem Solver
BruceW
Posts: 7,522
Registered: ‎12-03-2007

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.


whitall wrote: Chatted with Sony. There are no firmware updates and says cable company provides host id...Actually she wrote to contact cablecard manufacturer to get host id....so I don't know....

This is completely incorrect. The host ID is generated by the device the CableCard plugs into, not by the service provider or the card manufacturer.

Contributor
Darren_K
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎12-05-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

[ Edited ]

Anon/whitall, it looks like you still have some pending questions as I read this over. I can't promise to provide all the answers, but I'll at least narrow it down further.

 

Bruce is correct that the host ID is just that, the ID of the host device that the manufacturer (Sony in this case) assigns.

 

As you've indicated, the card isn't paired with the host. And without being able to access Sony's menu to obtain the host and data IDs, you won't be able to get this going. Based on this, it sounds rather odd to me your local office has given you more than one card being that they don't even have this basic information to continue. Not sure what path they were going down.

 

You do not need an S-card for this to work, as has been mentioned.

 

I am only familiar with the Motorola side and not at all with the SA/Cisco side of the world. It sounds like your system is using the latter. That being said, even if the card has a very old firmware, I would expect that it would still work.

 

You had mentioned having various diagnostic codes. While it is probable that each TV manufacturer might display their own errors, CableCARDs do have standardized ones, which I do have. If the card is generating the error, which is numeric in nature, I should be able to shed more light on that. However, to me, it really sounds like you don't need to look any further than Sony at this point, as you need to access their menu with the host and data values. One would think that should be easy to obtain, especially when calling them, but it sounds like that has been proven otherwise.

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Darren,

 

I thought "host" would mean the TV...Are you saying I would be able to get a host ID from Sony over the phone? Do all of their (same model) TV's have the same host ID #? I can't seem to find anybody at sony to help and am not sure what I am asking for and what dept would help me. Any ideas for if I call them again? Actually, the man today did not ask me the host info, but he should be aware from me email, which is quite clear that I do not have the host id info.

 

Maybe I will contact the same man at Sony that I had to contact regarding a part that was involved in a class action lawsuit and secret recall...He might at least know who to ask for help on this...

Contributor
Darren_K
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎12-05-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

You are correct that the host is the TV in this case. Sony would not be able to tell you what the ID is, rather they would/should be able to tell you how to access the menu where it is displayed. I assume you've tried accessing whatever menus you can, or searched the manual of the TV, or searched online. The data ID should be listed immediately below or next to it.

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Found this. Seems like my 

Problem....no host I'd and using a non "m" card solved it. That plus some tech knowledge. Below is info from 2 of his posts, then the link to where I read it.

 

 

 

Charter spent a few weeks changing out cards -- but it was always the same model Motorola M-card with the same rev firmware/hardware. That model card simply did not seem to be able to synch up with the Mitsubishi TV. When they finally brought in another model of card (at my repeated insistence), we immediately had pairing information including host ID, data ID and some other stuff they were looking for. 

As mentioned previously, it also helped to have an ace technician come in determined to "make it happen," as opposed to certain others who walked in the door lamenting their assignment to a cableCARD install and expecting to fail. Once on the scene, "Lewis" took charge of the situation, including badgering folks back at the central office or headend, talking to Charter management and tracking down RF signal quality like a bloodhound. 
 
And also this
 
Last week, Charter delivered some kind of voltage or signal spike to our system which took out both my wireless router (for computer connectivity) as well as my infamous Motorola CableCARD. Given the history of our account, a service manager came out to our house to fix the problem personally -- a very high caliber, technical guy with obvious experience with CableCARDs. 

He had a new CableCARD up and running within a couple minutes -- used the same Motorola card (MediaCipher P/N: 469140-003-00 -- not the M-Card) which I referenced above. He made a couple other comments which may be useful to others: 

1. He claimed that in his considerable experience with CableCARDs, the problem is rarely a malfunctioning TV or even a bad card. He has found that it is normally in the provisioning / activation actions of the cable company. In particular, he stated that the newer Motorola M-Card is an advanced multi-stream card designed to operate with multiple devices simultaneously and, as a result, is extremely sensitive to how the provisioning data (what channel packages you have paid for) has been entered into the cable company database. Often the fix is simply to delete this information in a given account and to rebuild the data in a certain sequence and manner, and then to reauthorize / reactivate the card. 

2. He also said that since technicians have no way to check the operation of a particular cableCARD in the field, the swap-out mentality for troubleshooting cableCARD issues is very common. He claimed that there were many cards in operation in my area -- most with no problems. 

Bottom line, his quick resolution of my problem was further confirmation to me that some cable technicians understand this technology and many do not. As someone who changed out our new TV twice in the troubleshooting process, I would not again jump at the idea that the TV is malfunctioning without a lot more work by the best tech my cable company had to offer. http://www.ecoustics.com/electronics/forum/home-video/176786.html
Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I got nowhere today. Today's tech knew more than the last guy, but I'm not sure he looked at all the diag codes and cable card info pages. He went out to his truck and called his supv after a few more attempts didn't work. His supv supposedly connected him to the cable card "guru" who didn't really have an answer. I think the concensus is that I need an "S" card that apparently they cannot get.

 

I asked about "rebuilding" my account as I referenced in my prior post. He said they can't rebuild it without the host info (yet I think the rebuild was meant to solve the no host info problem, soooo I am not sure that is correct.) I asked about the firmware update to the card, says can't update without the host id data either. Says there is nothing they can do....Do the field guys really understand the account provisioning side? I think the problem likes in the "copy protection error" and that is probably due to coding and/or the S vs M card.

 

I still think maybe an account rebuild would help, but I'll have to wait until Sunday or Monday to talk to the guy at corporate again.

 

This guy did comment that we are in SA/Cisco area, making it harder to get the S card, the majority are on Motorola for which an S card might be available.

 

So, Am I to be out of luck because I live in the wrong part of the country for Comcast to be able to support me? Does the FCC ruling that cablecards need to be supported to allow all paid for channels not apply to me just because I live in NJ???

 

He mentioned it could be the TV firmware. I contacted SONY for the 3rd time to be told there are ZERO firmware updates for my TV model.

Bronze Star Contributor
sammsterling
Posts: 242
Registered: ‎04-14-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

i hate to intrude here, but why again don't you want to rent a cable box?  why go thru all this hassle????  i just do not understand.  maybe i am missing something...  thats all i am going to say

Contributor
whitall
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I don't want to rent a cable box for 2 reasons.

 

First, Comcast has an obligation to support my cable card without the box rental fee of $10-15. I don't know how much it is formsure, but I should not be out  approx $150/yr because they cannot or will not make it work. It is the principle of it.

 

Second, this is a tv that will not see much use. It is going in a basement that has furniture but not really heated or finished. It is fixed up a little, but not a finished space. We don't know how often it will be watched! Probsbly not enough to justify paying for a box. We do rent a DVD for family room and an hd box for a second floor tv. Comcast gets enough of my $ (about$180/month) and they are supposed to support the cable card fully, not just in the parts of the country where they feel like it. (per the FCC) I have to draw the line on tv expenses somewhere.....

Bronze Star Contributor
sammsterling
Posts: 242
Registered: ‎04-14-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

i just wanted to know and i completely understand.  down here the little RNG110 box is $9.95 and maybe a promo for $5 for a while.  of course we are motorola based here so if u are cisco base who knows how much it would be.  i totally agree that comcast like all cable companies are a ripoff.  i understand they spend millions on equipment upgrades, but lets face it, if you cable bill is more than your electric bill there is something wrong (it is that way everywhere).  the trick is to try to get promotions and i was getting mine renewed every year but now they are not doing it or doing it just when they feel like it.  hey i know all about cable for 20 years of the digital migration.  i actually had to go out and spend $500 for a tivo because they cannot provide a decent dvr.  they have the worst dvr's out of all 4 of them.  uverse, dish and direct all have drv's with many more hours of HD recording capacity and uverse has 3 streams i think and now dish has 6 and direct just came out with 5.  comcast only has 2 tuners right now and they use mpeg-2 compression while the rest use mpeg-4 which requires 4 times LESS space for recording.  THEY ARE ARCHAIC.   i am kinda stuck because i live in a condo and the association pays for basic cable which is about $70 and by basic i mean channels under 100.  but my tivo is an Premiere XL4 which has 4 tuners and 300 hours of HD (2TB drive in it).  yes it was expensive and also i have to pay $15 a month for the service to boot, but at least i can record whatever i want and not worry about filling it up like i did with their crummy dvr.  boy, this was long.  i could go on and on about how screwed up it was when i got the tivo because i did alot of research with both companies before i bought it.  i actually found out about tivo thru these forums!!!  LOL.  anyway i digress from the subject.  i wish you well in your fight with them.  i love to fight with them but Philadelphia (corp) is really clamping down.  i wish u good luck in your quest to get the right cable card (i have one in my tivo).  have a great weekend.

Contributor
Posts: 24
Registered: ‎07-02-2003

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

SUCCESS! :catvery-happy:

 

I did file an FCC complaint as well as email to comcastcares. Not sure what did it but the Executive Complaint Dept got involved as was trying to help me. Last I had heard they were working with the mfg of the Multi stram cards to make them compatible. OK, I left a message asking for a rate reduction or something to compensate me for needing to rent a box while the issue was worked out.

 

I didn't hear back directly on my request for a box, and maybe it was never received. I did get a call yesterday from some sort of technical guy and we discussed the problem. He went out to the warehouse (main local office) and searched and located ONE single stream card. He set up a tech to come out and he came today. Hedid put on an amplifier because where the set is now could use it, put the card in the set, phoned his guy (did NOT use the handheld scanner method) and IT WORKED.

 

The problem really was the M card vs S-card and this tech did know that some sets just can't take the M card.

IT WORKS! I get all my channels. Now lets see if anything scary happens on my bill......

 

I hope this card keeps working because it may be the only one out there.........

 

To those who blamed my set and believed the backward compatible story...Told you so! :cattongue:

New Visitor
BiiRad
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎03-23-2013

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

I'm in the same Boat with my Sony Wega. Just got an M card (514517-012-00) from Comcast yesterday and spent hours and hours with different people on the phone including the card line. They seem lost without the host information showing up. The transport cheapo box has a terrible picture so I want a better picture and use one remote. From what I see on here I have to find an S card. I have some of the basic channels showing up but none of the premium. Seems like Sony should have a software update to accept M cards. This is my lower level workout/rec room so I don't want to rent another box for occasional use. I hope more techs can help out with info on this.
Contributor
Posts: 24
Registered: ‎07-02-2003

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Sony won't bother updating old technology. (even though it's not really "old). Comcast gave me the impression it's in the cards themselves that need programming updates. They told me they were working with the mfg of the cards. Try emailing comcastcares or one of those addresses you can find on this board. I got called by some executive department and it got the ball rolling. A man in my area went out to the actual warehouse and dug through the cards and found one. You need someone to physically check your locations warehouse, and if necessary have someone check at other warehouses. Trick is getting someone to go look, because it's hard to get the right person on the phone. I did complain to the FCC when Comcast told me too bad tough luck that my tv was old. I questioned their responsibility to locate a functioning card for me. the FCC did contact Comcast so I don't know if it was my complaint or my email to comcastcares or what. I don't remember the exact email I sent to. Good luck. It worked so easily with the right card!
New Visitor
BiiRad
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎03-23-2013

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Thanks for the info!! I would think (as it was earlier posted that the M cards are backwards compatible) that there would be no problem. I'll get a hold of Comcast cares to resolve this.

New Visitor
saru4u
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎04-04-2013

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Did you receive any compensation for the request? Also do they charge you monthly fee for those cable card(s). 

 

I have 2 TV's that I picked up cablecards for. Sony which at one point worked with the premium channels and Samsung with kept on giving me the error code 161-1. Yesterday a tech came by and couldn't fix the error code but was able to re-send the signal to the Sony TV and had that working. Today he came back with his boss/co-worker for the Samsung TV. While troubleshooting they switched cards around with both of my TV's and noticed that my Sony TV was showing channels with both but Samsung was not. So they NATURALLY blamed the TV and gave me a stb for the Samsung. So I said fine and be done with it. Later when I come back home and turn on my Sony TV... Guess What? My HBO's are not showing up anymore. I figured maybe they just need to send the signal again. The rep sent the signal multiple time plus tried to reboot the card and simply told me to call back after 20-30 mins if nothing works. Well it doesn't work. I'm about to just give up and get Directv (since I'm not obligated to stick with comcast, have other options) but was just hoping that if only if I can get this card to work I wouldn't have to pay the dreadful receiver fees.

 

So is it worth for me to try solving this and going through even more of a hassle? Or should I just give up and switch? (Mostly depends on the card fees). 

 

The frustrating part is that the everyone is such imbecile's. How do they not know anything about a product their company provides? This is sooo frustrating & waste of my time. 

Recognized Contributor
MikeWolf
Posts: 603
Registered: ‎10-11-2011

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

You were told correct, Single stream cards have been discontinued in favor of multistream cards which allow up to 6 and 8 streams rather then a single stream card that allows only one stream as the name implies. You would need to make sure that the hardware (the TiVo) is capable of using a multi stream card in place of a single stream card. What series is your TiVo?

Recognized Contributor
MikeWolf
Posts: 603
Registered: ‎10-11-2011

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

whitall, The secure software version being 3.14 is correct as that matches what I'm seeing on my own Cisco/SA Mulitstream cablecards. Comcast is rolling out a firmware update for the cablecards for Cisco/SA markets If you are seeing "waiting for update" under the "CA Time:" then that indicates that there is a connection issue between the cablecard and Comcast. It very well can be a frequency issue if the cablecard is trying to "call home" on a freqency the television doesn't support on it's tuner. On my cablecards it connects on 555Mhz for one and 666Mhz on the other.

If you go to the Cablecard menu and scroll down to Diag Screen,  what is the OS Ver: ?

On mine currently is OS Ver: PKEY 1.5.2_F.p.2401

Comcast is currently rolling out firmware version 1.5.2_F.p.3001

It's possible your television may need a firmware upgrade itself but seeing that it's a fairly older model, you may be out of luck. Panasonic for example was the last company to build cablecard supported televisions until I believe 2006 or 2008 and on only 2 models at that.

Recognized Contributor
MikeWolf
Posts: 603
Registered: ‎10-11-2011

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.


whitall wrote:

Chatted with Sony. There are no firmware updates and says cable company provides host id...Actually she wrote to contact cablecard manufacturer to get host id....so I don't know....


This is incorrect, the Host ID is the device (TiVO, television, set top box) that the cablecard is installed in. The Cablecard ID is what is supplied by the cable company via the cablecard itself.

Recognized Contributor
MikeWolf
Posts: 603
Registered: ‎10-11-2011

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.


BiiRad wrote:

Thanks for the info!! I would think (as it was earlier posted that the M cards are backwards compatible) that there would be no problem. I'll get a hold of Comcast cares to resolve this.


It's one thing for the M card to be backwards compatible with older devices, it's another for the older devices to support the newer M card, and that right there is the unknown since some devices may need a firmware or software update to recignize the newer technology while others may be just too old to.

New Visitor
saru4u
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎04-04-2013

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Went by the local Comcast Office to see if I can get one of those S-Type card rather than M-Card. They said Comcast only has one type of cards, the type that you received. 

Contributor
Posts: 24
Registered: ‎07-02-2003

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Mike, I think Bill and saru4u have Televisions, not Tivo's. I had a TV that required a single stream and I believe they do to.

 

You guys will have to somehow get to a person who has physical access to go into a warehouse and dig through the cards looking for an S.Email comcastcares or one of those addresses where you can get to someone who can help you.

 

Saru, is it you who had trouble with a Sony and Samsung? Once you paired a card with the Sony they became "Married." I believe the card has to be reprovisioned or reformatted or something before it can go into a different device once it was paired. That could be part of the samsung problem.

 

If the cards were programmed to be truly backward compatible they TV's shouldn't need firmware updates. The M cards need to be programmed to work with the devices that are out there. People should not have to buy new TV's because Scientific Atlanta or Comcast can't write a program to make them work with devices that are designed for S cards. Comcast just has no incentive to do it. Comcast could also find a way to inventory where it's small stash of S cards are located. How hard could that be? Maybe they could be centralized in one location per region and ordered by local offices for specific usage where M cards have failed to work. Doesn't seem to tough to me...The one I got was just kind of laying there in the pile from what I understood.

Recognized Contributor
MikeWolf
Posts: 603
Registered: ‎10-11-2011

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

From what I've been told by one of the warehosue managers, Comcast is supposed to have returned the S cards back to the manufaturers for credit for M cards already so I'd be very suprised to see a few forgotten cards still around. I know alot of people, especially those with Verizon FiOS have been having problems with their series 3 and HD TiVo's due to more copy protection for HBO not supported with the older single stream cards forcing them to swap out for the multistream variety. The same could happen with Comcast.

New Visitor
katyvic
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎07-01-2013

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

The Comcast supplied Motorola type 'M' CableCARD is NOT compatible with my Sony WEGA TV, despite the M card specification which states that M cards are backward compatible with S type cards.

I tried three different Motorola M type CableCARDs, provided by Comcast.
For what it is worth, the specs on one of the three cards that failed was this
SN: MA0929ZJ0600 (SERIAL NUMBER)
UA: 000-00197-03677-162
MAC: 0023EE6AD6C7

Though I made more than a dozen calls to Comcast support over this, and they shipped me another (redundant) DCT set top box and other equipment, which only wasted my time connecting and activating, finally, after continuing to fail in activating the CableCARD, Comcast phone support recommended I have a local installer come out: to the tune of around $40 charge!

I told the phone support person that I though installation of equipment was free, especially since the FCC requires that Comcast provide CableCARD support and since I have tried, repeatedly to do the installation myself.

To no avail, after checking with her supervisor, this support person told me: sorry, but no - you have to pay.
To which offer, I declined.

Next, went back (once again) to my local Comcast office and this time got a different cler, and recounted my problems, yet again, and THIS TIME, I was offered a FREE installation of the CableCARD. Yippee!

I was told that the installer would call me a few hours before the appointment time, to confirm, but all I got was a robo-call, not even from Comcast, but from "Toll Free Call" on my caller ID display, which I normally do not answer. In this case, since I knew to expect a call, I did answer, and confirmed my appointment.

I had hoped to alert the installer - as I had already alerted Comcast phone support, and the local Comcast office, several times - to please come prepared with an S type CableCARD, since the M type cards do not seem to be compatible with my TV.

No such luck, since the Comcast robots do not accept such comments.

Finally, my local installer, James (Tech #2508) arrived, and was a very intelligent and capable person. With the help of his supervisor (Evan Wilkes), James managed to locate an S type CableCARD, in a neighboring county (my county had none). He installed it the next day and my problem was solved. Finally.

THE MORAL OF THIS STORY IS:

1) Do not believe those who tell you that M type (multi-stream) cards are backward compatible with S type cards.

That may be what the paper specification says, but hardware, and reality, is the only truth we really know.

Only type 'S' (single stream) Motorola CableCARD will work in my Sony KD-36XS955 36" 4:3 FD Trinitron WEGA HDTV

2) Don't give up on CableCARD installation - it is well worth it because:

a) Your TV tuner is vastly superior to the Comcast set top box which: feeds you unwanted ads; can't go 'back' more than one single step in navigation; makes managing favorite channels very difficult
b) Comcast spies on your TV viewing habits; S cards don't have that 'cool' interactive capability of sending your habits to the NSA

3) You can probably purchase an older S type CableCARD on ebay and get it activated, if Comcast does not have any S type cards available in your area. I am just guessing on this, but in my case, I would have gladly paid the price for a card and risked the possibility of Comcast not being able or willing to activate it.

SEE ALSO:
https://customer.comcast.com/help-and-support/cable-tv/purchasing-a-cablecard/

>Note: If you subscribe to a video service level above Limited Basic and you have additional televisions connected to Comcast video service there will be an additional monthly service charge for your additional television outlets regardless of whether you lease equipment from Comcast or provide your own retail devices. If, however, you own a retail device, including a CableCARD device (e.g., TiVO or CableCARD equipped television) with an activated CableCARD installed and are subscribing to a Comcast video service that includes equipment as a part of the service, Comcast will issue you a monthly Customer Owned Equipment credit. Customer Owned Equipment Policy.

Recognized Contributor
MikeWolf
Posts: 603
Registered: ‎10-11-2011

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

multistream cards and single stream cards may look the same but they don't work the same. Host devices that were designed to use single stream cards will see a multistream card as a single stream card, however some older host devices may not if the firmware or software on the host isn't compatible for whatever reason. I'd contact the television manufacturer and see if there is an update to address this. Comcast very rarely if at all carries single stream cards anymore since pretty much all devices have multiple tuners now and don't support single stream cards (yup, card is backwards compatible but not the host itself) so you were very lucky the tech was able to find one. Who cares if the NSA may or may not monitor your tv habits, you got something to hide? Even if that was true, S cards and M cards would both do it, no clue where you'd even get that from. You cannot purchase a cablecard off of ebay that is not stolen from a service provider because they are not sold to the general public. Even if you were able to obtain one, no service provider will activate it because of it's ill gotten means and the card would have to be registered in their system prior to it being issued onto your account which can only be done at the equipment warehouse and not by a technician either at a service office or home visit or over the phone beacuse they dont have access to that logistics system, and since it wouldn't be in their system they wouldn't be able to activate it since they ask for the serial number and card ID which they match to their records, no records equals no activation. Service providers are very strict about this because they dont want possibly modified or stolen cards in their system due to it being a security risk to the rest of their network and even more so rouge employees stealing them and selling them illegally. Even if it was remotely possible to put at customer owned cablecard or set top box on a service providers system, they wouldnt offer any technical support on it so you'd be up a creek without a paddle on that front, and when it comes to moving or changing service providers they'd probably ask for it back because they'd assume it's theres. Can't have it both ways here. Can't own your own cablecard because it can't be entered into the system to be activated, and if it COULD be, they'd at that point consider it their property and demand it back and charge you accordingly if you don't return it, and no they wont reemburse you for it.

 

Cablecards that are generally sold online are stolen from a service provider by a customer who didn't return it and was charged the full amount of the card which is pretty pricey. The service provider then looks at the records of that customer and blacklists the serial  number and card ID so it cannot be reactivated in another location. If someone attempts to activate it, a red flag is raised and some nice men with badges in suits show up, since these devices are registered with the Federal Communication Commission. This is all true, I've seen it happen.

New Visitor
katyvic
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎07-01-2013

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

wrote:

>Who cares if the NSA may or may not monitor your tv habits, you got something to hide?

 

Exercising our rights (not priveleges) doesn't imply guilt or suspicion.

Thanks for letting us all know which side of the 4th Amendment you live on.

 

New Visitor
katyvic
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎07-01-2013

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.


MikeWolf wrote:

>Cablecards that are generally sold online are stolen from a service provider by a customer who didn't return it and was charged the full amount of the card which is pretty pricey. The service provider then looks at the records of that customer and blacklists the serial  number and card ID so it cannot be reactivated in another location. If someone attempts to activate it, a red flag is raised and some nice men with badges in suits show up, since these devices are registered with the Federal Communication Commission. This is all true, I've seen it happen.


Well, I would thank you, if you had any credibility, but since you attacked me on the 4th Amendment issue, I am wary of trusting you on anything you say.

 

But, assuming you are correct about Comcast policy - your opinion contradicts published Comcast policy, as per the link I previously published.

 

Can you provide any verifiable sources of your opinion that Comcast will not support arbitrary purchase of S cards, despite the official published claims to the contrary?

 

Recognized Contributor
MikeWolf
Posts: 603
Registered: ‎10-11-2011

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

[ Edited ]

Common sense, not being a conspiracy theorist, and the fact that whatever policies your reading could very well be out of date and null at this point since sometimes things get forgotten to be udpated. You are more then welcome to waste your money and try it yourself for all I care.

New Visitor
katyvic
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎07-01-2013

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

[ Edited ]

[post deleted]

Service Expert
Queen-Evie
Posts: 14,150
Registered: ‎02-04-2004

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Mike is not a Comcast employee. As my signature states

 

Comcast employees must be authorized to post in the forum in an official capacity. Employees posting here have their names in red and are designated as employees. Names not in red are customers.

 

To all participating in this topic:

Please keep the discussion civil.  Flaming will get you nowhere. If it gets out of hand the topic will be locked.

 

 

 



 


Comcast employees must be authorized to post in the forum in an official capacity. Employees posting here have their names in red and are designated as employees. Names not in red are customers.

This is done to protect customers and for assurance that they are dealing with a Comcast employee.
Non-Authorized Employees are allowed to post but cannot state they are employees nor can they allude to being employees.

New Visitor
rearly
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎08-03-2012

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

Thanks for this thread.  I've been on the phone with Comcast/Xfinity for over 4 hours across two days even including and office visit where they told me to go home and call back to tech support (arg!).

 

Anyhoo, I was trying to do the Motorola M-Card in the Sony WEGA and could tell I would get nowhere without a "host ID" which tech support was "consistant" in needing.  I think I better understand the TV is supported to generate this in cooperation with the card (despite the message at the top of the screen that reads, "This message is proivded to you on behalf of your cable company"

 

Best I can tell I won't be able to generate this host ID until I get an "S" card, which best I  can also tell, is likely only available at the city dump....or I'll try eBay but I'll keep my receipt in case the black helicopters show up as prophesized somewhere else in this thread.

 

Anyhoo (again) I can getting nowhere with the tech support but I'm confident I'm in the same boat as the original posters here.  Thanks for taking the time to post.

 

I think the lesson with these Cablecards is "You have to WANT IT BAD!"  Thanks again.

 

Regular Problem Solver
Posts: 563
Registered: ‎05-21-2009

Re: Multi-stream/Single-stream cable card.

[ Edited ]

Comcast may not activate a CableCARD you provide. You need to check with them first to find out for sure.

 

Years ago after I bought a Sony WEGA I was tempted to get a CableCARD from Comcast. I forgot about it because cable companies only support one-way when useing a CableCARD. That means no cable guide, on-demand or pay-per-view. That made it not worth the bother.

 

BTW, CableCARDs early on supported two-way communications. The problem was cabled companies could not get their act together and agree to support them  that way. That is probably why CableCARDs disappeared from TVs.