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Official Employee


63 Messages

Thursday, August 10th, 2017 12:00 PM


ANSWERED: Can I buy my own DVR or cable box?

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​Can I buy my own DVR or cable box?​

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Off-Market TV Boxes

Cable operators purchase TV Boxes from TV Box manufacturers that they then rent to their customers. While these boxes are generally not intended for retail sale to consumers, some of the boxes find their way into the marketplace (lawfully or not) and are sold by resellers to consumers ("Off-Market TV Boxes").

If you have purchased your own Off-Market TV Box from a reseller, please take the time to acquaint yourself with the requirements of "Qualifying Equipment" pursuant to Comcast's Customer Owned Equipment Policy. Comcast will support such devices only if they comply with the requirements set forth in that policy.

You may contact us with questions or to find out if your new device meets the requirements of "Qualifying Equipment."

  • In addition, please ask the reseller who sold you the device for instructions for activation and troubleshooting problems.
  • Please be aware – not all models are supported in every location.
  • Resellers of these devices typically don't provide an On-Screen Guide with the device, but rather rely on Comcast's On-Screen Guide.
    • If an On-Screen Guide is available in your location and is compatible with the TV Box you purchased, Comcast will make that On-Screen Guide available for download – free of charge.

Note:These Off-Market TV Boxes available from resellers are different from retail CableCARD-compatible devices like TiVo that are specifically developed for consumers. They are also different from retail streaming devices such as Roku and Samsung Smart TVs that are compatible for use with the Xfinity Stream app as part of the Xfinity TV Partner Device Program.

For more information, please see FAQs about CableCARDs and Xfinity Stream for Xfinity TV Partner Devices.

Additional service information

Please also note the following service-related information for customer-owned Off-Market TV Boxes:

  • HD Service: If your Off-Market TV Box is HD-compatible, and you'd like HD service, and your Xfinity TV subscription doesn't include HD service, a charge for HD Technology* may apply.
  • HD DVR Service: If your Off-Market TV Box is DVR-capable and you'd like DVR service, and your Xfinity TV subscription doesn't include DVR service, charges for DVR Service* and HD Technology* will apply.
    • Note: Comcast DVR service is only available to HD customers.
  • Service to Additional TVs: To the extent that you use your Off-Market TV Box on secondary outlets, you'll be responsible for the applicable Service to Additional TV Fee.*
  • Customer-Owned Equipment Credit: Where Comcast rented equipment is offered and charged a-la-carte and not included in the package price, or where you're using an Off-Market TV Box as an additional outlet. You won't get a credit.
    • Instead, you simply won't be charged a rental fee when you use a customer-owned TV Box in place of a rented Xfinity TV Box.
  • Activation Process for CableCARD-Compatible Devices: As set forth in the Customer Owned Equipment Policy, CableCARD activation for customer-owned TV Boxes requires verification that the device has not been stolen from Comcast. Such verification can take up to several days.

*Note: These fees also apply to customers using our rented Xfinity TV Boxes.


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Device manufacturers, such as TiVo and Ceton, manufacture devices for retail that can use a CableCARD to access Xfinity TV service.

If you purchased a CableCARD-compatible cable TV Box from a reseller, it can also be used to access Xfinity TV service. (See off-market TV Boxes for more information.)

If you elect to use your customer-owned devices instead of renting a Comcast TV Box or TV Adapter, you must obtain a CableCARD from Comcast.

Note: Whether you use a customer-owned device, a Comcast TV Box or a TV Adapter for Xfinity TV on additional TVs, you'll be charged a Digital Service to Additional TV/TV Adapter Service to Additional TV fee for each additional TV.

How To Get a CableCARD

We support CableCARD-compatible retail devices, such as TiVo, SiliconDust (HD Homerun Prime), Ceton (InfiniTV), Samsung (Smart Media Player) and Hauppauge.

For more information on CableCARDs and frequently asked questions, learn about CableCARDs.

Professional Installation

To schedule an installation appointment, please contact us.


A CableCARD Getting Started kit with easy-to-follow instructions can be shipped to your home or work address. See Pair or Activate Your CableCARD for instructions.

Contact us to find a Comcast Service Center or Xfinity Retail Store where you can pick up a CableCARD Getting Started kit.

CableCARD Self Installation Kit.


What is a CableCARD?
A CableCARD is a device roughly the size of a credit card that can be used with a compatible third-party device to access Xfinity TV services. Comcast supports CableCARD-compatible devices such as TiVo, Ceton, or Silicondust. (This is a non-exhaustive list.)

If you subscribe to Xfinity TV service, you have the option of purchasing a third-party CableCARD-compatible device from a retailer. You can also purchase a CableCARD-compatible cable TV Box from a reseller. This device can also be used to access limited Xfinity TV services. (See about off-market TV Boxes for more information.)

If you choose to use a customer-owned device instead of renting a Comcast TV Box or TV Adapter, you must obtain a CableCARD from Comcast.

How do I get a CableCARD?
For information on getting a CableCARD, please see instructions on getting a CableCARD.

Once I get a CableCARD Getting Started kit, how do I activate my CableCARD?
Once you receive your CableCARD Getting Started kit, go to the Xfinity CableCARD activation and pairing tool at and refer to these easy-to-follow instructions on pairing/activating your CableCARD.

Why is Comcast offering CableCARDs?
Comcast is committed to working with manufacturers of retail devices, including manufacturers of CableCARD devices, in order to provide you with more choices to access and enjoy Xfinity TV services. Comcast will continue to support retail CableCARD-compatible devices well into the future.

For any questions about your CableCARD, please call 1-877-405-2298.

If I have a CableCARD device, do I still need my Comcast TV Box or TV Adapter to get Xfinity TV?
You only need a CableCARD device, Comcast TV Box or TV Adapter for each TV connected to Xfinity TV service.

Can I access the same features and services with a CableCARD that I currently enjoy with my digital cable service?
Retail devices that support CableCARDs (like TiVo) have their own features, which may include on-screen program guides and DVR service (if supported, DVR service may require a separate subscription) that are supported by the retail device manufacturer. All linear (non-IP) channels that are part of your Xfinity TV service will be available. Some retail devices also support additional services*. Please refer to your owner's manual or manufacturer's website for additional information on your device.

For more information on TiVo devices, please visit the TiVo website.

Do CableCARDs offer parental controls?
Currently CableCARDs don't have parental control functionality, although Comcast does pass V-chip data to the CableCARD device. V-chip is a generic term for technology used in television set receivers which allows the blocking of programs by ratings that are content-based.

Please review the owner's manual for your CableCARD device to learn what parental control functionality may be available.

Why does my on-screen guide look different from the digital cable TV Box guide?
CableCARD-compatible retail devices use a guide provided by the device manufacturer, which is different from the guide provided by Comcast. As a result, the guide content from the manufacturer may not always match Comcast's guide. For more information about your guide functionality and features, please consult the owner's manual for your CableCARD-compatible device.

Will I be charged to use a CableCARD?
In most cases, a CableCARD in a customer-owned retail CableCARD device is free as long as there are no other pieces of equipment on the account.

What are the fees associated with Service to Additional TV outlets?
Whether you use a customer-owned device, a Comcast TV Box or a TV Adapter for Xfinity TV on additional TVs, you'll be charged a Digital Service to Additional TV/TV Adapter Service to Additional TV fee for each additional TV if you subscribe to an Xfinity TV service above Limited Basic.

Why am I not able to view all of the Xfinity TV content that I subscribe to if I remove my CableCARD from the host device or move it to another device?
If you remove the CableCARD from its host device, the CableCARD will possibly be unpaired from that device. If this occurs and you lose some or all of your Xfinity TV content, you'll need to call 1-877-405-2298 to re-pair and reactivate the unit.

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