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HDTV/Rogers Cable Signal Troubleshooting/Signal Amplification

Discussion in 'Technology' started by Spinsah, May 5, 2009.

  1. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    Here is the background.

    I have moved into a place that is a century Victorian broken into a few apartments. I am on the second floor and my landlord is on the third. He pays for the Rogers VIP package and its included in my rent (Internet and digital cable including a slew of HD channels).

    I bought a Scientific America box off of craigslist and have hooked it up to my HDTV via component video cables. The cable comes into my living room and it runs to the cable modem and router after going to a splitter. There is another piece of preexisting cable that runs beheind the built in bookcase above the fireplace, so on the other side of that I used a female to female connector to run about 50' of chinatown RF cable around the room to the digital terminal. When I first did this, I was only getting regular channels and then a couple of HD channels that soon dropped out. Eventually the whole box crapped out and went to channel 998 indicating it was not getting a signal.

    I then ran cable before the splitter right into the digital terminal to test it and it worked fairly well, but I was still not getting in HDCBC (513?) and HD Global (515). I did some research online and went out picked up some proper R6 cable and ran that. This time I was still getting about 60 percent of all HD channels but while watching the TSN it started stuttering out until it was gone completely.

    Yesterday, I decided I was losing a few dB in the cable run, so I picked up a NexxTech Signal Amplifier, thinking the 10 dB boost would be more than enough.


    I picked up this type of amplifer because it had both a foward and reverse stream which should allow it to work with ROD. I hooked everything up and I was getting about 95% of HD channels, but still not HDCBC and HDGlobal (ROD would encounter a 'video error'). Not that I give a fuck about Global, but watching the NHL playoffs is pretty much the whole reason I want Rogers HD, so this is still a major pissoff. In the meantime I am using rabbit ears to tune in the HDCBC, but I really want to conquer the cable signal gremlin. Through all this my Internet on the same cable connection has reamained stable and brisk (transfer rates have often hit 900 kbps).

    I could call Rogers, but my landlord says if they come and see that the VIP package is shared between two apartments (even though it is the same old house/same addresss) they might cut one off and I would be stuck getting my own cable package. Is this likely to happen? I would think the techs would not give a fuck, but I could be wrong. It's not like we're stringing cable over to the house next door. Any insight?

    After blowing 60 bucks on this booster and making sure I have proper R6 cable the whole way around, I am at my wits end.

  2. Eclectic

    Eclectic TRIBE Member

    Umm...3 easy steps.

    1. Call Rogers.
    2. Complain about reception.
    3. Get a service tech out to fix it.

    Do they not do free service calls like Shaw does out in the West?
  3. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    As I detailed above, my landlord lives in the apartment upstairs (it is a converted Victorian) and he pays for Rogers VIP (up to four terminals, hdtv and Internet) my share is included in my rent. He is reluctant to green-light a tech visit for fear they might shut down the party. Hence, this whole DIY approach.

    I suspect Rogers techs would not really care, especially because the apartments are at the same address in the same house behind the same main door.
  4. workdowntown

    workdowntown TRIBE Member

    Don't call Rogers, the techs have been known to report and disconnect peeps who split the signal/buy boxes online/hack.
  5. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    I did buy the box online, and that is my right to buy a used box and not rent from them. All good there. I am also not hacking anything. My landlord who lives up the stairs (there are no formal apartment numbers or buzzers, just interior doors seperating us) pays for the VIP package (supports four terminals - mine is number two), so I think what we're doing is ethically alright. He is paying for the package for the house that he owns. Does that kind of grey area hold any weight with the techs? I suppose calling in a tech is a gamble no matter how you look at it...
  6. Eclectic

    Eclectic TRIBE Member

    Oh ok...never caught that before.

    Yeah, then you hit a 50/50 shot of getting a tech who will report it as 2 suites "sharing" cable or he won't care and he'll just fix it.
  7. Eclectic

    Eclectic TRIBE Member

    Actually, I believe this is incorrect.

    Rogers (and every other provider of cable/satelitte) can impose any sort of hardware restrictions on their service. You can't just randomly buy any Digital Terminal online and hook it up to any provider. Shaw uses only Motorola and Pace boxes out here in Saskatoon. They won't even connect another type of box.

    Did you call in to have your box added to the account? Most of the signals and premium channels need to be authorized and added by Rogers in order for you to receive them don't they?
    Last edited: May 5, 2009
  8. oddmyth

    oddmyth TRIBE Member

    A few more troubleshooting steps you could try if your landlord is up for it.

    1. Try using his box in your apartment and your box in his.
    2. Try turning his TV off and having yours on.
    3. Does your landlord get those channels coming in OK?
  9. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    As long as it is a Rogers box no longer registered on their network then everything is kosher with used terminal being sold. I called and activated it no problem.
  10. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    I haven't tried my box in his place, good call. I do know he is getting in the channels that I am having trouble with...


    Thanks for the help so far...keep it coming!
  11. lobo

    lobo TRIBE Member

    Some of the digital terminals allow you to get into their service menus and scroll to the page which shows your signal strength per channel. What model do you have?

  12. workdowntown

    workdowntown TRIBE Member

    Yup, they need to authorise the box.

    nvm just saw Spinsah's post.
  13. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    sa 4250hd
  14. workdowntown

    workdowntown TRIBE Member

    Last edited: May 5, 2009
  15. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    Thanks, man. Checking it out...
  16. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    I still have two questions:

    1. Why is ROD not working now? It will load but gets an error when it STB trys to send back information. I thought getting a bidirectional amp would avoid this?

    2. Why would certain HD channels not work and most others will (all but Global and CBC work from what I can discern)?
  17. lobo

    lobo TRIBE Member

    I think it's related to signal strength. With digital, it either works or it doesn't once the signal is too poor.

    Another question, how is the cable being split once it comes in? Did Rogers put a 4way splitter to allow for the 4 connections? It could also be the RG run from that splitter all the way to your room.

  18. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    I'm going to look into that tonight, lobo. Thanks!

    Ideally, I'll be able to setup the booster where it comes in.

    The thing with ROD is, it allows me to view menus and it loads everything but then it craps out when I try to engage programming. I wonder if the upstream on my NexxTech device is to blame?
  19. videotronic

    videotronic TRIBE Member

    I'd check the first splitter in the chain. Some of those things are mad sketchy
  20. KiFe

    KiFe TRIBE Member

    sorry to hijak this thread... no point starting another cable/hdtv thread

    question: Does anyone elses HDPVR have issues with the audio dropping signal for breif seconds every once in awhile? I've noticed that this happens almost exclusively on the highdefinition channels.

    is this a known issue? Anyone else have the same problem?
  21. Eclectic

    Eclectic TRIBE Member

    I'm with Shaw and it's a known issue.

    It doesn't happen enough to really bug me yet though...usually once during a 30 minute episode.

    During sports though it really pisses me off.

    I've got a Pace "Aspen" digital terminal though. Not sure if that makes a difference.
  22. SneakyPete

    SneakyPete TRIBE Member

    HD Porn doesn't come with the Rogers VIP package, Spence.
  23. praktik

    praktik TRIBE Member

    Audio drops are not unique to Rogers equipment or service, all service providers have the issue and I think its a combination of factors:

    - HDMI issues (set top box not playing nice w/ TV or amp - or vice versa)
    - issues from the source

    Sometimes it can be due to encoding issues at the broadcaster - sometimes box firmware will make the problem worse.

    But I think most of the time the issue has very little to do with the set-top box and more to do with issues from the source/HDMI.
  24. Spinsah

    Spinsah TRIBE Member

    I posted my situation on that form and one of the mods shut down my thread because I was seeking help for an illegal setup. I probably wouldn't feel right just stealing cable, but considering my landlord is paying for the VIP package and using one STB (entitled to four), I really think ethically it ain't no thang. It makes me miss Teksavvy and how tuned into issues around broadband they are.
  25. praktik

    praktik TRIBE Member

    digital home is a great forum but they have zero tolerance for pirate discussions (and the ones that are allowed are confined to very narrow parameters). To be honest though, I think the active moderators there really do make the forum a better place.

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