13 Replies Latest reply: May 9, 2012 8:05 AM by bobtallman RSS

    Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels

    KAC

      I recently installed a Slingbox Pro-HD. Our cable system (Insight Communications) publishes a list of its non-encrypted digital channels. I have 5 different brands of TVs that have digital tuners. They all tune all of the published non-encrypted digital channels properly when directly connected to the cable system (without a cable box). Although the Slingbox-ProHD detects all of these channels during a channel scan (97 viewable digital channels), it will only display a portion of the available non-encrypted channels. All local channels that are rebroadcast on the cable system work fine, however, most of the non-local stations (e.g. CNN, etc.) will not display. Instead, I get the "Weak or no video signal detected" error message.

       

      I have seen other threads related to this but I find no answer. I have the latest version of firmware installed in the slingbox and the latest version of desktop software. The cable RF signal is NOT weak. I have elliminated all amplifiers and even connected the incoming cable wire directly to the Slingbox. I am an experienced electrical engineer, so please do not suggest problems with the cable company, problems with my connections, problems with RF amplifiers, etc. Please do not suggest to "get a $10 per month cable box". I have an older analog Slingbox Pro that I could have used with an additional cable box if I wanted to go that route.

       

      I suspect this is a problem with the Slingbox internal QAM tuner. If that is the case, and if it can't be fixed with a software download, then I need to return the unit.

        • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
          ron-m

          I am in Bowling Green Ky And I have the same exact problem. I have spent 9 hrs redoing everything over and over. I personally think  Insight is  choking the band width and the  blocking the channels with a firewall on thier system. I too get all channels without boxes throughout my home on all tv's, perfectly . when i run a  bandwidth test  while routing through the  slingbox hd 300-100 i bought  today. Speedt chokes down to  1.5mps and same for upload...when i split it  to router then I go back up to 20mps down and 2.5 up. so the  sling box does have some role in the issue. However the  problems remain even when  cable splitter is used.. Any quality solutions would be great. Good luck... I am stumped

            • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
              KAC

              Hi ron-m,

                   It is impossible for Insight to restrict an unencrypted channel from one tuner and not another on the same cable connection. These stations are broadcast "in the clear" and insight's equipment can not monitor which tuners are receiving a particular channel. If Insight stopped sending a channel to the Slingbox in your house, none of your digital TVs could pick up the channel either. Try them both at the same time and you will see that only the Slingbox does not work. By the way, if you are meaning that Insight is blocking your video as the Slingbox sends it back upstream as TCP/IP packets, connect to the Slingbox while at home. The slingbox video traffic does not go through Insight's system while you are watching from home (i.e. on the same local network as the Slingbox unit). You will see that the channels will still not make it to your computer, even from home.

                  I spoke with Sling Media's "help" line today, and other than insisting that the channels are actually encrypted, offered no help. The channels are clearly NOT encrypted. I suggest that Sling Media contact Insight Communications to verify this, or come by my house to witness my TVs displaying the channels without a cable box. Oh, they did offer one more suggestion - take my Slingbox to a friend's house and try it there! Are you kidding me. This company is in complete denial regarding this problem. Send your unit back, as I am, if you need to tune all of the unencrypted digital channels without a cable box. If you fine connecting the Slingbox to your cable box componet or composite output, save a hundred bucks and buy a Slingbox SOLO without the digital tuner.

               

                  Regarding your bandwidth comments: I don't exactly understand the problem that you are describing (running a speed test while routing through your Slingbox), but my best impression is that when you have the Slingbox forwarding a channel through your upstream cable connection, you get a lower upstream data rate from the computers in your home. That would be expected since the slingbox uses most of the available bandwidth to send the video in the upstream. When you watch on your local area network at home, your upstream bandwidth is not used up by the Slingbox. I'm sorry if I misunderstand your bandwidth issue.

                • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                  ron-m

                  At any rate I HAVE A SOLUTION!!!!!! Strangely enough it is  the permissions on your browser that are causing the problem.  I never thought that they would block  only some of the channles ....but they doooo. Sorry I am excited. I was all set to  return the unit. I have read  dozens of these posts...all with the same problem... ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS the following and all is fixed... at least it was for me .  (1) launch your browse like normal to watch your slingbox . http://watch.slingbox.com/watch/sling_player

                  (2) double click on the  small eyeball icon at he bottom of your browser and a window will pop up. left click the link in the window that is from slingbox.

                     It will say something like    http://analytics.sling.com/analyticsgif?env=prod&ta...  chose to always except cookies from this site.

                   

                  (3) click on the settings tab on the window. your internet privacy window will pop up. click on sites button. In the address of website  area key in

                   

                  sling.com  then click {allow}

                   

                  then key in

                   

                  slingbox.com   then click {allow}

                   

                  click  {ok} button that window will close leaving your internet properties window still open

                  click {ok} button and that window will close leaving your privacy report window still open

                  click {close}  and lastly adjust your quality on your watch window to  minimal or some lower setting till it  spools up and then you are done.

                  your unit should now work  and all channels should be there...

                   

                  Good luck worked for me  HOPE IT WILL FOR YOU AS WELL!!!!!

                   

                  Let me know if it worked for you as well.

                  I never found the solution  out there I figured it out myself.

                   

                  Message was edited by: ron-m

                    • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                      KAC

                      Hi ron-m,

                          I think we are experiencing a different problem. I am using the SlingPlayer Windows application to view video, not a browser. In any event, I tried the browser interface and have the same problem as with SlingPlayer. I tried both Internet Explorer and Thunderbird, but didn't see an "eyeball" icon at the bottom of either browser. I searched around for similar settings and didn't see them. I suspect that since you are not using the local SlingPlayer that your router had not been configured properly to allow the Slingbox data to pass when your Slingbox was setup.

                           Before you fixed your problem, were you able to watch any channels at all? Can you now tune in all unencrypted channels? Try CNN. Here in Louisville CNN is 33.5.

                        • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                          ron-m

                          Yes I can tune CNN cnbc foxnews. Syfy history. All channels here are in digital format .

                          I did set up the port forwarding in my router prior to any of my posts. I will say this.

                          I noticed that my router had set up another ip address in addition to the

                          192.168.0.254 (static address) that the set up assistant had me to set up. The router had set up 192.168.0.05 all on its own

                          I deleted this one and saved the changes. Having 2 ports doing the same thing will cause a conflict.

                          Most routers will use .1-.253 as addresses it will assign itself.   .254 will be treated as a static address that will stay as a constant

                          For the port (5001)to tunnel in and out with. Thus the setting.

                          I hope that perhaps this might help. 

                          I did notice that before I cleaned up the ip conflict the scans during set up said anywhere from 0 to 96 channels found. But when I

                          Attempted to view them the message of low or no video would appear on all but a few lower local channels.

                          After I corrected these issues my stream rate went from 27 kps to over 1.2 mps upto 5 mps on almost every channel and the other channels now appear.

                          I have also tested on my iPhone4 and iPad  on 3G and all stream well with as few as 2 bars. I had my wifii turned completely off on my phone. I shared

                          My Internet over to the iPad and it too worked just fine. I am on AT&T. My iPhone is jail broken and I have the 3G unrestrictor so sling will run on 3G.

                          I also created a hot spot on 3G and logged into it with my laptop (win7)  and it also streamed in just fine. I tested all these various ways. Because they are the ways I will use it myself.

                          • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                            ron-m

                            CNN is 33.5 here too and tuned in no problems.

                            Just to clarify. I too am using only the coax. From the wall no cable box at all.

                            The comment about my bandwidth was to say that when I ran the coax into my sling box

                            Input and then from its output onto my cable router.  It affected my speeds in a big way. If you have done this as well

                            I would suggest you split the coax and give the router a clean path not through the sling box. I have nothing connected to the coax output on my sling box.

                             

                              • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                                ron-m

                                Please forgive my spelling. I am keying these replies on an iPhone 4 as I am

                                 

                                Making breakfast for one ofmy daughters.

                                The phone will often respell or chose a word all on its own. 

                                • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                                  KAC

                                  Hi ron-m,

                                       Thanks for all the feedback. As you suggested, I do split the cable signal off to the cable modem before it gets to the slingbox - so not an issue there. My slingbox RF output is not conencted to anything. I have also double checked my router settings and everything looks good there.

                                       I think the bottom line is that we have different problems. Yours was a routing issue. Mine is a tuner issue. My tuner always find all of the published unencrypted digital channels during a channel scan, and it also only works with the same subset of those every time.

                                       I think based on the fact that your HD Pro will tune CNN on 33.5  and mine will not, I will exchange this unit for another one and see if my problem is actually a defective tuner. If that doesn't fix the problem, I will just return it and use my existing analog Slingbox connected to the DVR component output.

                                   

                                  Thanks again ...

                                    • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                                      KAC

                                      I exchanged the unit for a different one, and had the same problem. I decided to bang on the problem for another two days and think I have found a very inconvenient work around. Apparently the Slingbox cannot determine what resolution to set for the channels that are not displaying (i.e. are being reported as "Weak or no video signal detected"). In all cases I have tested so far, the channels that don't work are being broadcast in somthing less than 640x480 (VGA). In many cases the channels are being broadcast at 320x240, so if the video resolution setting is changed from "Automatic" to "320x240", the "Weak or no video signal detected" message will go away and the channel will be played properly (the proper resolution setting has to be found by trial and error). To change this setting in SlingPlayer, go to the Settings/SlingPlayerOptions/Encoding tab. To change it in the Web interface, click the "Auto" word at the bottom right of the playback window and select something other than "Auto" until your channel displays (the "Good" setting works for most of the channels I have tested so far). Obviously you don't want to use the "Good" setting for HD channels, so this work around is a pain.

                                       

                                      Just to be clear, the problem is not a bandwidth issue. The problem occurs here on my home network where I get more than "7000 kbps" streaming rate for HD channels using "Auto" mode. When the channels that will not play in "Auto" mode are played in "Good" mode, the rate is about "2000 kbps".

                                       

                                      I noticed that this problem was originally reported in a separate post over a year ago. It's amazing that SlingMedia hasn't fixed it by now. Can it be fixed SlingMedia?

                                       

                                      Now I have another problem. Two of my 96 unencrypted channels play in slow motion (CNN is one of them). It is one of the channels that requires the above fix before it will even play at all. Now it displays properly but the play speed is in extreme slow motion (video and audio). It is not the normal slow buffer start-up, it is VERY slow and the audio playback of a high pitched woman's voice sounds like a very, very deep man's voice playing back about 1/10th speed. When this is happening, the playback position icon on buffer indicator at the bottom of the playback window falls far behind the "live" position. I can find no way to make it play at normal speed. Again, this is not a bandwidth issue. The slow motion playback is very smooth and not choppy at all, and the playback position is far from the "live" position in the playback buffer. See my separate post on this issue.

                                        • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                                          ron-m

                                          I had same outcomes as you still on some Chanel's  

                                          I went over to insight office and got a mini box. Now every channel works flawlessly. I use the ir adapter

                                          And set up the box on the sling box as a Comcast 1104. The box they give you may differ. I have only the one box and I use it only on the sling box  

                                          I guess that the mini box levels out all of the resolution issues. All channels tune quickly and don't drop out at all. Look

                                          Great on mobile as well and function with guide function as well. The box is at no charge till June 2013   .75 a month after that.

                                          All my issues now solved. I left all other tvs alone in house. Good luck. The box was the key.

                                            • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                                              KAC

                                              Hi ron-m,

                                                   I have an Insight mini-box on one good quality analog tv that I have and can't part with yet. The picture quality from the mini-box is terrible, but may look ok on a cell phone. You may get as good or better result by skipping the mini-box (i.e. the inherent digital to analog and then analog to digital conversions) and then setting your Slingbox resolution to 320x240 and leaving it there. Or - maybe this is what you decide to do after Insight starts charging for the mini-boxes. The mini-box is not an option for my purposes. I have an older Slingbox Pro with an analog tuner that I could have used with the mini-box. I wanted to tune to the digital channels directly, and especially the HD ones, to watch at high resolution on a large screen computer elsewhere in the house.

                                               

                                              Thanks for the suggestion though.

                                                • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                                                  KAC

                                                  I spoke with slingmedia support today regarding these issues. The agent connected to my computer and he verified the problems. There are no fixes. He finally agreed to forward a request for a fix to engineering, but he advised me not to expect any result. He furthermore told me not to expect the digital tuner in the slingbox to work like a digital TV tuner. What? Is it a digital radio tuner? I am guessing what he wanted to say was that I shouldn't expect the tuner to work properly.

                                • Re: Pro-HD will not tune some non-encrypted QAM cable channels
                                  bobtallman

                                  ANy updates on these issues?  I installed coax from wall to Slingbox coax in and seem to get all channels but the picture quality and remote response is not good.

                                   

                                  Any ideas how to improve?