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OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes

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Bronze Problem Solver

OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes

We’ve been experiencing something odd the past few months. Occasionally while watching an OnDemand TV show, the video will go black as a commercial ends. Audio continues.

It’s not a huge deal when watching OnDemand in real-time (so to speak) because the fix is to stop OnDemand, then start the show again from where you stopped. The video is back. (And so far, the restart puts one back right where you are supposed to be, that either being the next commercial, or the show segment following the commercial.)

The bigger hassle is whenever, just before all go to bed, someone does OnDemand of a show nobody else wants to watch, and records it to our DVD/VHS unit. Next morning, the person wanting to watch carries the disc or tape downstairs to where we have another DVD/VHS unit and monitor (but no cable feed). Then they sometimes find the show is audio only until its end, ruining the attempt to view it without bothering all the others.

We’re SD, could it be a flaky box? Has anyone else seen this occur?
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Contributor

Re: OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes

First of all, how are you watching these shows (i.e. DVR, Set-top box)?

Personally I do have a VHS/VCR unit, but I've never plugged it into the DVR I use, so I can't really say why the show's video is not recording until the end, other than a poor video cable connection from the cable box to the VCR.

 

As to the issue of watching On Demand programs, I've had that problem a couple of times too, although the issue is somewhat equipment specific.

After changing to a new DVR a year ago I haven't noticed the problem as frequently.

 

All that being said, sometimes it's also a front-end issue, where Xfinity itself is to blame for the lag...

 

So, please post your type of box, so that I (or somebody else) can truly get to the root of the problem, although I can advise you to looking for an equipment exchange/upgrade from Xfinity.

 

Good luck!

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Problem Solver

Re: OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes


@ForrestS wrote:
We’ve been experiencing something odd the past few months. Occasionally while watching an OnDemand TV show, the video will go black as a commercial ends. Audio continues.
[...]
We’re SD, could it be a flaky box? Has anyone else seen this occur?

I am also SD, and have occasionally noticed a commercial go audio-only, but the video (so far) seems to resume either in the next commercial or when the show resumes.  My "theory" on this (for what it's worth) was that they wete trying to stuff an HD commercial down an SD pipe; so far it hasn't carried over into the resumed show.

 

A couple years back there was something like this that a particular commercial would predictably do to my On Demand viewing.  I can't remember what the fix was, whether I exchanged the box or managed to convince someone that some magic signal needed to be inserted when shows resumed.

 

It might be worth figuring whether a particular commercial (or commercials)  triggers your problem.

 

I think that there are multiple issues (of which this may be one) related to them "chopping up" the shows for On Demand and inserting different commercials.  My guess is that they make changes to the process without rethinking it "from the top."

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Re: OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes


@DVR11 wrote:

First of all, how are you watching these shows (i.e. DVR, Set-top box)?

...

So, please post your type of box, so that I (or somebody else) can truly get to the root of the problem, although I can advise you to looking for an equipment exchange/upgrade from Xfinity.

 

Good luck!


Motorola set-top SD box; no DVR.  See pics of front and back of box atop DVD/VHS unit.  Setup is coax cable into box, its coax output to DVD/VHS unit (always on Chnl 3), its coax output to TV.

 

Thanks.

 

 

0976BB68-61CE-4B7B-ADD6-D4AB81003F31.jpeg
6E6B6D49-DB8B-4182-A54C-55334582F3C4.jpeg
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Bronze Problem Solver

Re: OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes


@CactusThorn wrote:

I am also SD, and have occasionally noticed a commercial go audio-only, but the video (so far) seems to resume either in the next commercial or when the show resumes.  My "theory" on this (for what it's worth) was that they wete trying to stuff an HD commercial down an SD pipe; so far it hasn't carried over into the resumed show.

 

A couple years back there was something like this that a particular commercial would predictably do to my On Demand viewing.  I can't remember what the fix was, whether I exchanged the box or managed to convince someone that some magic signal needed to be inserted when shows resumed.

 

It might be worth figuring whether a particular commercial (or commercials)  triggers your problem.

 

I think that there are multiple issues (of which this may be one) related to them "chopping up" the shows for On Demand and inserting different commercials.  My guess is that they make changes to the process without rethinking it "from the top."


Our experience is that once the video goes black out of commercial, it stays black if you do nothing.  (As borne out by what is seen on the disc or tape.)

 

We originally thought it only occurred on ABC shows, but the other day if happened on a CBS show too.  Good idea to try to remember what commercial was playing just before the video goes dark.  (Easy enuf when doing the overnight recording, not so much viewing live as we tend to zone out during many commercials or take a hike to the fridge.)

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Bronze Problem Solver

Re: OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes

Attempt to get a medium-res photo of the set-top box's back, in case anyone can make out a serial number.  First time I tried, the forum page displayed something indicating a problem, not the photo itself.

 

 

 

 

E3052C38-442B-4368-BBAC-C0DC5B7C9206.jpeg
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Contributor

Re: OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes

Thanks for the photos!

 

The only thing I could see is that since you have an older set-top box (the Motorola) the internal components may be worn out.

Now I'm not a Comcast salesperson, and I'm not trying to get you to buy something, but I might suggest getting a newer set-top box from Xfinity. 

 

I would recommend the Pace PX022ANM/Samsung SX022ANM, which is comprable to what you have at the moment.

It is a set-top only box with SD but no HD.

 

But I do want to make it clear that it is likely not the VCR's fault, and you should hold onto that, if nothing else...

 

Good luck!

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Re: OnDemand goes audio-only after commercial sometimes

Oh, and an extra note, the reason On Demand might not be working right with your box is because the box is older and might be having a hard time supporting Xfinity's programs.

See, nowadays with Xfinity's equipment, they update it periodically, and gradually they phase out upgrades/general service with the older stuff.

Eventually they end up forcing you to get new boxes because it no longer is supported on the newer platforms they are creating (this happened with one of our set-top boxes a couple of years ago).

 

Sooner or later you'll have to replace it, and although it might seem like a bad thing, new units are a lot better.

They generally are more energy-efficient, are faster, and like I said earlier, can support newer Xfinity programs.