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Hardware Support Discussions related to using various hardware setups with SageTV products. Anything relating to capture cards, remotes, infrared receivers/transmitters, system compatibility or other hardware related problems or suggestions should be posted here.

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  #1  
Old 11-28-2007, 05:19 PM
PosterBoy PosterBoy is offline
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Encrypted HD QAM content into Sage

Here is an interesting article I read about combining a cable box with an AverMedia M780 board to get encrypted HD Cable content into Windows Media center without a cable card. I wonder if this option is workable under sage


http://www.hometoys.com/article.php4?displayid=980

I'm not sure how you would get Sage to change the channel properly but...
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  #2  
Old 11-28-2007, 06:46 PM
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stanger89 stanger89 is offline
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First lets just discuss the premise (assuming the info is accurate). If you had a cable box that would remodulate HD into clear QAM and output it, yes you could run that into a QAM tuner and record it. Basically it would work exactly like it does today with NTSC, you'd setup your source on the tuner input, tell it not to change channels, and you'd use an IR blaster to tune the box.

Now, that said, there seem to be a significant number of "problems" with that article:
  1. I find it difficult to believe that such a simple solution is out there and that this is the first we've heard of it.
  2. Related to 1, but I've only heard of one box remodulating a digital signal into a clear form, the Dish Network 6000 reciever with the 8VSB modulator installed. This would do exactly like the article discribes, remodulate the tuned channel into clear 8VSB (vs QAM). However it's been obsoleted and is no longer available.
  3. Why would they modulate to QAM, that's a much tougher modulation than 8VSB and much less compatible.
  4. To the best of my knowledge, Media Center doesn't support QAM tuning on anything but a DCT or the HD HomeRun (which fakes MC out by pretending QAM is 8VSB).

It's very cool if true, but I would approach it with a great deal of skepticism.
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  #3  
Old 11-28-2007, 07:07 PM
fyodor fyodor is offline
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The AverTv has a plugin for doing QAM. If the article is not full of crap, I am betting that it replaces the analog tuner, which is why Media Center can still use it in combination with an IR blaster.

http://msmvps.com/blogs/chrisl/archi...6/1265318.aspx
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  #4  
Old 11-28-2007, 07:31 PM
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evilpenguin evilpenguin is offline
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I don't buy it, but I bet plenty of people around here have the right equipment to check it out.
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  #5  
Old 11-28-2007, 08:03 PM
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mattdcknsn mattdcknsn is offline
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I think my Verizon HD box is the motorola one mentioned in the article.

If so I don't think there would be a problem hooking it up to any QAM tuner, it should be able to get the signal. I'll try and give it a shot, whenever I can find the time.
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  #6  
Old 11-28-2007, 08:51 PM
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mattdcknsn mattdcknsn is offline
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Well I tried to plug the RF output into my only QAM tuner at the moment (an HDHomerun) I got some sort of signal on channels 1-4 but the HDHomerun program couldn't recognize it. I have an Avermedia 180 I'll try and use later.
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  #7  
Old 11-28-2007, 09:43 PM
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Might want to grab a copy of TSReader (Lite), and see what it can make of the signal.
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  #8  
Old 11-28-2007, 10:11 PM
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mattdcknsn mattdcknsn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post
Might want to grab a copy of TSReader (Lite), and see what it can make of the signal.
I'll give it a shot tomorrow. Forgot about that program.
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  #9  
Old 11-29-2007, 12:18 AM
jpwegas jpwegas is offline
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My bet is that someone at the guy's cable company bumped the "off" switch on the QAM encryption box and he just didn't realize that all his channels are currently clear QAM.

--John
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  #10  
Old 11-29-2007, 08:00 AM
mikesm mikesm is offline
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I would be very surprised if this were true. Not because the output is in the clear, but because the STB's don't have QAM modulators in them. Mot boxes have had RF remodulation in them for some time. They output a signal on channel 3-4 for old sets with no inputs. I have never seen any documentation on a Mot box that said it had digital re-mod in them.

Because of the way that the box is laid out, I doubt that they would actually pass the the original encrypted stream through. It would almost have to be shipped out in the clear digitally.

The RF re-mod is an optional feature in these high end boxes, so it may be the case that folks could have special ordered a QAM modulator, but I doubt it.

However, I doubt it was just passing through all the cable signal and the original signal was in the clear. That port has an RF modulator attachd to it and doesn't do passthrough as far as I recall.

I would be very interested if anyone could pick up any kind of QAM signal from that jack. If so, it means they have a digital remod in there. Rather than try this with a PC tuner, I would recommend that someone hook up a TV with a builtin QAM tuner to that output and do a scan. It could be 64-QAM or something not normally on the plant, and the signal is designed to be recieved by TV's, so I think testing with a TV is best.

thx
mike
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  #11  
Old 11-29-2007, 08:05 AM
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m1abrams m1abrams is offline
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Wow, if that article is true that would be assume. My guess is it is not, however if anyone has that hardware give it a shot and let us know.

I have an SA 4250 which does have an RF output, might have to try it on my HDHomerun.

What is also interesting if this is true it means that you would not need more than one STB for as many QAM tuners as you have.
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  #12  
Old 11-29-2007, 08:38 AM
jpwegas jpwegas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m1abrams View Post
What is also interesting if this is true it means that you would not need more than one STB for as many QAM tuners as you have.
If it's really doing QAM remodulation (which I doubt) then it is probably only doing it for the station the STB is currently tuned to. Remodulating ALL the channels at the same time seems very unlikely.

--John
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  #13  
Old 11-29-2007, 08:57 AM
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m1abrams m1abrams is offline
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Well I am not sure how QAM in encrypted, however my bet (based on how most things are encrypted) is that the decryption happens prior to demodulating the QAM signal. If that is the case you would not need to remodulate the signal just decrypt it which yields an unencrypted QAM.
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  #14  
Old 11-29-2007, 09:28 AM
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stanger89 stanger89 is offline
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Actually it's the data in the transport stream (carried on the QAM) that's encrypted. When I still had cable, you could tune anything with the MyHD (and record) and if you openned the recording up in TSReader it would list out all the channels, showing which were, and weren't encrypted.
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  #15  
Old 11-29-2007, 09:32 AM
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m1abrams m1abrams is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post
Actually it's the data in the transport stream (carried on the QAM) that's encrypted. When I still had cable, you could tune anything with the MyHD (and record) and if you openned the recording up in TSReader it would list out all the channels, showing which were, and weren't encrypted.
Oh well then yea you would need to remodulate the signal. Wonderer where this blogger got his data then?
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  #16  
Old 11-29-2007, 10:11 AM
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m1abrams m1abrams is offline
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Ok did a bit more digging and came across this thread talking about it.
http://thegreenbutton.com/forums/2/2...howThread.aspx

The poster of the Derek chimes in around page 3. Skip the parts about them debating MCE being able to tune QAM unimportant to us. Sounds like if this works at all it probably only works on FIOS systems. Do FIOS even encrypt the QAM signal?
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  #17  
Old 11-29-2007, 10:20 AM
fyodor fyodor is offline
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Reading his post I now think he's full of crap. He seems to be saying that VMCE just picks up the QAM like an analog source. I am hoping to be proven wrong, but at this point I think it's bullsh*t.

Here's the pinpoint link.

http://thegreenbutton.com/forums/per...ad.aspx#224314


Quote:
Originally Posted by m1abrams View Post
Ok did a bit more digging and came across this thread talking about it.
http://thegreenbutton.com/forums/2/2...howThread.aspx

The poster of the Derek chimes in around page 3. Skip the parts about them debating MCE being able to tune QAM unimportant to us. Sounds like if this works at all it probably only works on FIOS systems. Do FIOS even encrypt the QAM signal?
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  #18  
Old 11-29-2007, 10:26 AM
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m1abrams m1abrams is offline
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I am wondering if in fact he might be just recorded the downsampled analog signal of the HD channels. I currently do that now because it is much better quality than the non-HD channel even though it is still SD quality in the end.
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  #19  
Old 11-29-2007, 10:34 AM
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mattdcknsn mattdcknsn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m1abrams View Post
Ok did a bit more digging and came across this thread talking about it.
http://thegreenbutton.com/forums/2/2...howThread.aspx

The poster of the Derek chimes in around page 3. Skip the parts about them debating MCE being able to tune QAM unimportant to us. Sounds like if this works at all it probably only works on FIOS systems. Do FIOS even encrypt the QAM signal?
I have FIOS and it does encrypt most of the channels, I can get the locals via the HDHomerun but all other channels are encrypted.
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  #20  
Old 12-01-2007, 08:04 PM
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gblinckmann gblinckmann is offline
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Question Possible way to get HD Cable into Sage

Has anybody seen this article? Although they are talking about Windows Media Center, it looks like it just might work for getting HD Cable into Sage. I don't have a cable box to try this with, but if someone would like to give this a try, I'm sure that a LOT of people would appreciate it if this works.

http://www.hometoys.com/article.php4?displayid=980

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