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Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

Regular Visitor

Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

I've been having a problem with my Comcast service for about a month.  Picture blacking out, missing audio and pixelation.  I have 3 boxes in my house, 2 are straight cable, one is HD/DVR on the big downstairs tv.  This problem has been affecting my enjoyment of movies, tv shows, etc.  It seems to happen quite frequently lately and I've been missing entire lines of movies and shows.  It happens during regular viewing and viewing of my DVR'ed shows.  I called Comcast today and while the gentleman was very cordial, he couldn't explain why this is happening.  It seems to be happening to a lot of people.  He said Comcast is aware of the problem and they are working on it, and no, he couldn't tell me when the issue would be resolved.

 

I'm just frustrated that I signed up for triple play, and pay a lot of money each month for this service.  I know it's only tv, but I enjoy watching television and I hate to miss entire lines of dialogue during a movie or interview.  Am seriously considering a move to FIOS, although I've been a Comcast customer my entire adult life and have been satisfied with my high-speed internet and phone service.  I work in the media so watching massive amounts of television kind of comes with the job.

 

Not sure where to turn next...

Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

This could be caused by a weak signal. Check the connections to the cable box, especially the incoming coax, and eliminate any unnecessary splitters.

To check signal strength with a Motorola box, tune to the offending channel, turn off the box with the remote, then within two seconds hit "OK/Select." This will bring up the diagnostics screen. Select "Inband Status" (probably page d04) and look for "SNR" for the tuner(s). This value should be in the mid to upper 30s. You may be able to improve the signal strength by adding a signal amplifier to the incoming cable line.
Regular Visitor

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

WarEagle, I appreciate the response, but when the CSR at Comcast tells me he knows there is a problem and that they are working on it and no, he can't tell me when it will be fixed...that lets me know that this is not a weak signal problem.  I've seen too many posts on here and talked to too many people IRL who are running into these problems.

 

I have no splitters.  My coax is just fine, this just started in the last month.  Why won't Comcast address this problem?  Just tell me...things **bleep** right now, but they're gonna get better...?

 

I have tried to resolve the problem with the help of Comcast CSR but get nowhere.  I'm taking this to the air next week...I'm sure you'll hear about it.  Too bad the Comcast CSR didn't know he was talking to someone who has half a million cume listening to her every morning.  I don't even get a reply from Comcast...bad.

Contributor

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

If you've got three cable boxes, you must have at least one splitter to take the cable coming into your home and send it to three different wall sockets. I've experienced many occasions where tech support reps over the phone mis-diagnosed a problem i was having. It can be easy to mistake a wiring problem in your home for something else. For example, with a different cable company I spent months dealing with painfully slow internet and horrible picture quality. I kept being told that they were upgrading their systems and it's a problem with their network when in the end the source of the problem turned out to be a squirel nest in the junction box on the outside of my building

 

I'd really do what WarEagle suggested. Cable splitters don't really work like adding a power strip to a wall plug. When you hook up a cable splitter, each output coming out of it has a weaker signal. It'll only take you a minute to see if that's the cause and you could wind up saving yourself a lot of headache.

Message Edited by ChewyCashew84 on 01-04-2010 12:59 PM
Problem Solver

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

I get pixelation on Comcast bay area and comcast california during Kings and warriors but its not as bad as before and during cal bears basketball games it would pixelate like crazy like last year every so often I get this huge pixelation on my screen like someone took a color dump on my screen on BET,ESPN. on top of that on NBA tv the picture would totally cut out. and come back gladly it doesnt happen all the time and NHL network just cuts out interminttnly all the time...
Regular Contributor

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

I also have problems here south of Denver.  I've already had techs out to the house and the first time it was a pinched cable from the feed outside done during installation, then the second time they say everything looks fine.  I tried doing the test mentioned above when I have these issues and the reading is usually around 37-38. The pix problems are usually just on CBSHD and HBOHD and some OnDemand.

 

I also have a problem with our tv in the bedroom where I'll be watching Cartoon Network Adult Swim at night and every 15-20 seconds the screen will go black for a second or two but the sound is still there and that's the only channel it does it on so far in that room. That TV is direct cable, no box. The only splitters I have is down in the basement that the tech has checked and said is great and the splitter for the HD box which is fine. The last tech has checked every single connection, outside the house, down in the basement, and each outlet and all readings were good. The only thing that they could think of is the feed from the network which they can't do anything about.

 

Any other ideas that someone could suggest to try?

Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

Schimmy -- your signal seems strong enough.  Could be just a problem with the network.
Regular Contributor

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

Here in the Tucson outskirts we've been experiencing very short signal losses just on the dvr with HD.  The screen goes black like it's dead then comes back on, kind of like a hiccup.  It happens both on HD and digital channels and shows up on shows stored on the DVR as well as when we're watching live. No problems on the other set, which leads me to believe it has something to do with the DVR itself, since the set without the hiccups is connected directly to the cable.  Not worth a service call or changing the box because other than that, the reception is fine.
Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

It's probably a problem with the box, but you could try calling 1-800-COMCAST and having them send a signal to the box in hopes of clearing it up.  You could also check to make sure all the connectors are tight.
Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

I have some channels that are doing the same thing on one of my boxes. 11 channels are rendered useless.

Several of them are available on HD and those are ok.

 

However, the one I want to use most is not on HD. Right now I'm looking at Weatherscan and it's not doing anything. It's stuck. The date is correct, but the time shows 3:56pm, which is several hours aways.

 

A hit to the box did not clear up anything.

 

edited the number of channels rendered useless.

Message Edited by Queen-Evie on 02-12-2010 09:24 PM
Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

It's the tuscaloosa blizzard, Evie. 
Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

Our blizzard turned out to be fizzle. It snowed, in fact it is still snowing, but what little stuck has already melted. And what's coming down now isn't sticking.

 

The issue started sometime yesterday. I noticed it last night around 10:00.

 

If it doesn't resolve by Monday, I'll replace the box. There are few recorded things I still need to watch before taking the box back to the Comcast office.

Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

Progress is being made. Weatherscan is no longer stuck in a time warp. It's still scrambled-looking but the time is now correct. Doesn't do me any good though, if I can't see what's being shown on the screen.

 

Some of the other channels which were scrambled are now telling me "currently unavailable and should be available shortly".

 

Dear Comcast, please define SHORTLY. In my world, it does not mean 3 hours later and still no picture on the screen.

 

UPDATE: It's all fixed now. All channels are working.

Message Edited by Queen-Evie on 02-13-2010 09:08 AM
Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.


Queen-Evie wrote:

 

UPDATE: It's all fixed now. All channels are working.

Message Edited by Queen-Evie on 02-13-2010 09:08 AM

Well, it seems it didn't stay fixed for long. All the channels that were wonky a few days ago are doing the same thing again. Weatherscan is telling me "currently unavailable and should be available shortly".

 

edit: This morning all 11 channels were working. At 6pm today all channels were working.

It's now 7:33pm, and the same 11 channels are messed up again. Based on my experiences of the past few days, they will be working tomorrow morning. 2 dvr's are not affected, only the one I use is.

 

 

Message Edited by Queen-Evie on 02-15-2010 07:36 PM
Regular Visitor

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

I am having the same issues just outside Houston. Almost every channel is pixaliziing (or tiling), audio is interrupted and sometimes lost. I am on second dvr/hd box since December, both had hits from cs to no avail. Pulled the power and reset MANY times. Kicker is that service techs have been out 4 times, no wirin g issuees inside only 1 splitter installed by tech, one for tv one for internet. Lst tech replaced old connector ourside, said would fix issue... but not the case.

 

I have watched this problem and tried to make sense of it. It appears to be an issue of overloaded supply lines into our area. At peak times, ballgames, popular shows, it starts. At 3am when all you get is infomercials not an issue. Why cant our tech service guys get the lines boosted if that is what it takes, or replace the defective entry lines from the LE's and line amps if those are the problem.

 

I'm getting very tired of paying for an inferior product! Shame on Comcast for not delivering to the consumer what they advertise. With the $$$$ Billions they make as a corporation, surely thay cn afford to fix the problem

Expert

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday-every evening the same 11 channels went wacky.

The next morning, they were fine.

I expected it to happen Wed. night, but it didn't. Hopefully whatever caused the issue has been fixed.

Frequent Visitor

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

I'm in the Atlanta area, and have had blackouts, pixelation, picture glitches, and even more aggravating, the sound will suddenly drop to less than half the normal levels, and I have to turn either the set, or my headphones up almost all the way, just to hear. This is very irritating, sometimes lasts hours, & Comcast has no clue as why that is happening.

 

I've had techs out to the house, the first time telling me the brand new modem, and the box, were both "older models", and were replaced. However, nothing they've done have as yet, got the signal to work consistently.

 

Especially frustrating is that before the "upgrade" my signal was FINE, and I was also able to record one show, while watching another, without having to pay nearly $20 more per month, and was able to program my VCR to record various shows per night, no matter what channels. Now, I can only set it to record whatever channel I must manually leave it on!  

 

THIS IS RIDICULOUS! I GET LESS OPTIONS, A LOUSIER SIGNAL, FLUCTUATING VOLUME, UNSOLVABLE PROBLEMS, AND I GET TO PAY TWICE WHAT I WAS PAYING WHEN I HAD NONE OF THESE ISSUES!

 

New Poster

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

Just wanted to add that we've been having this blackout/greenscreen problem (1-2 seconds) as well in Richmond, VA. It happens on regular, DVR and on-demand. My research made me think it might be the Motorola box, but I might try having techs send a signal to clear it up.
New Poster

Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

Just curious if you happen to have an in-line filter installed:

 

http://www.mmn.hu/PPC/0608_PPC-Catalog-Complete2007.pdf

 

The Silencer Series NB Windowed High Pass Filters - Ingress mitigation has always been an important aspect of providing qualtiy upstream communications, with the introduction of oIP and other advanced services, ingress mitigation is a must.  Distortion, delays and dropped calls can all be attributed to ingress, window filters supress ingress noise allowing active services such as cable modems and STB return carriers to pass.  PPC’s SNB series is a major breakthrough in Windowed High Pass Filter performance. PPC’s signature Silencer ® Series design utilizes 100% Surface Mount Components in an extremely compact, sleek package with superior electrical and mechanical performance.

 

When Comcast installed Motorola boxes [1 downstairs, 1 upstairs] in my house about 8 years ago - they installed SNB6-5/13 6kV filter on the cable outlet downstairs.  

 

Recently - I have noticed what looks like Digital corruption on specific channels on both boxes [mainly 2 and 59, but randomly can happen on other channels].  Tonight - it was extremely bad on Channel 2 [ABC].  I had forgotten this filter was installed and decided to remove it.  Once it was removed - no more "digital corruption" - so far my internet and cable service seem to be fine.

 

Message Edited by koloumb on 03-03-2010 11:57 PM
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Re: Picture glitches, blackouts, pixelation.

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