4 Replies Latest reply: Nov 20, 2011 9:39 PM by chakkarinen RSS

    Can you use with a coaxial input only?

    jthespartan

      Hi there,

       

      I'm active duty military and am moving overseas in a few months.  I'm trying to figure out a way to stay connected while I'm abroad and someone suggested I check out Slingbox.  I read the FAQs, and have a good understanding of how it works.  I do, however, have a question.

       

      I don't want to conflict with others watching TV back home, so I'd like to hook up a Slingbox BY ITSELF in a separate room.  If I have a coaxial cable go directly from the wall to the Slingbox, do I also need to hook up a TV?  I understand I wouldn't get DVR functionality... that's okay because I'm just looking to access basic 1-99 channels. 

       

      Would that work?  And if so, how does it change channels?  Seems like it wouldn't work since there's no IR receiver (because no TV).

       

      Thoughts?

        • Re: Can you use with a coaxial input only?
          chakkarinen Apprentice

          Yes, you can use the Slingbox PRO-HD with coaxial input only, and without disturbing the TV viewing of the other folks where your SB is located; since the Slingbox Pro-HD has a built-in tuner.  Assuming you are getting TV signals for at least some channels directly out of the wall, then you can put a coax splitter on the line out of the wall, run one branch from the splitter to the "coax in" on the SB Pro-HD and the other branch to the "coax in" on the TV, or cable box, if the viewers at home require a cable box.   The SB can then stream those channels coming directly from the wall, while the TV can view channels.

           

          If you need to stream more channels (such as all of those that the cable box normally delivers), then you would need a second, separate cable box.   Some cable TV service providers (Comcast, for example) can provide a "no-frills" cable box, such as a Digital Transport Adapter, which you would put between the "coax in" on the SB and the coax splitter, to translate all of those encrypted, digital channels that the regular cable box handles.  If you do this, then you would need to use the IR blaster that comes with the SB Pro-HD to allow you to remotely change channels via the SB on the DTA.  But if you are satisfied with just the channels included in the straight coax feed from the wall, then no IR blaster would be needed.

           

          You will also want to verifiy that the UPLOAD speed of the Internet service at the location of the SB is fast enough -- typically several MBPS is necessary -- to support the streaming without causing video stutters or stalls.

           

          And BTW, thank you, thank you, for your service to our country -- my oldest son is a CTN in the Navy, and I know the country and the world is all the better for his service.

            • Re: Can you use with a coaxial input only?
              jthespartan

              Thanks so much! 

               

              Just so I understand you correctly, I'd use a splitter and route one cable to the SB and the other to the TV/Cable Box/whatever they're using in the home. And by doing this I won't conflict with what they're watching on TV?

               

              How does that work with changing channels?  The SB just uses its "internal tuner" (and not the IR blaster)?

                • Re: Can you use with a coaxial input only?
                  chakkarinen Apprentice

                  Correct, so long as you put a splitter on the incoming coax, and you ONLY connect one branch from that splitter to the INPUT coax port on the SB, and NOTHING is connected to the OUTPUT coax port of the SB, then the built-in tuner in that Slingbox Pro-HD will be used to control the channels -- and only the channels -- reaching the SB on your coax "in the clear" (i.e., unencrypted).  The SB will then stream those channels only through the ethernet cable connected to the ethernet port on the SB, then through your router and your modem to to Internet Land.   And once in Internet Land, you should be able to view that stream on any computer connected to the Internet anywhere (but only one computer can view the streaming signal at a time).

                   

                  But, as I noted, if you must use a cable box to view all of the channels that you desire on your regular TV, then you will need a similar, 2nd cable box to stream all of those channels through the SB.   In other words, the tuner in the SB Pro-HD can only view and stream the UNENCRYPTED signals on the coax branch.   To get the ENCRYPTED signals, you would need to add to that branch a second cable box, or Digital Transport Adapter or equivalent, to decrypt the encrypted signals.

                   

                  In the USA, cable TV networks are required by federal law to feed some unencrypted signal through their coax for viewing without the requirement of the contractee to install a cable box to translate.   These include the local affiliates of the big networks, plus any local community stations.  In my case, my local cable TV provider (Comcast) also provides some home shopping channels, some religious channels, some foreign language, and a few miscellaneous others.   Most are provided in SD format, but many of the mandated ones are also provided in HD format.   So, yes, I can and do have the capability to stream those channels that are broadcast "in the clear" on my coax WITHOUT disturbing what is being shown on the TV, so long as I have put the splitter in the signal and do not connect a coax cable from the output port on the SB to the TV.  Instead, I run a coax from the splitter directly to the TV, and a second coax directly from the splitter to the SB.

                   

                  Putting a cable box between the splitter and the SB provides lots more channels than the "in the clear" suite, depending on the level of cable TV service I have purchased.   Recall that the SB Pro-HD allows one to connect up to four devices to its input ports simulataneously for streaming (but only one port is streamed out at a time, and only one computer can view that one streamed signal at a time).   In my case, I have inputs to my SB Pro-HD from the "in the clear" TV channels on the coax input, and from a cable box/Tivo combo on the S-Video input connection.

                    • Re: Can you use with a coaxial input only?
                      chakkarinen Apprentice

                      A P.S.===   you definitely would want to do the purchase and setup before you go overseas, and then test out the viewing capability not only from within the local area network where your SB is located, but also from an Internet hookup that is outside of your local area network, such as a local Starbucks or Mickey D's.    If you can view the stream OK from those two sites, then you will very likely be able to view it with no problems from overseas. I use both the "stand alone" Sling Media Player software on my Windows PCs (XP, Vista, and 7) and the web browser plug-ins (on IE and Firefox) with equal success with both.