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Got digital cable- now is there any way to....


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25 replies to this topic

#1 of 26 Bob Morgan

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Posted August 14 2001 - 02:10 AM

..., record a channel while watching another channel?
I have At&T Broadband if that is any help.
Anyone have any ideas?

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#2 of 26 Marty M

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Posted August 14 2001 - 03:01 AM

You can watch something through your TV tuner while recording something through the cable box by hooking up the TV and cable box with an A/B switch. You might contact your cable company for info on doing this. They might provide you with the materials to hook this up.

This what I do. It does mean that I am limited to channels 2-57 on my TV while something is being taped. When taping from the cable box be sure to turn the cable box to the channel you want to tape and set the VCR for channel 3 or 4, the same channel your TV is set for the cable box.
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#3 of 26 Andrew Beacom

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Posted August 14 2001 - 03:28 AM

Forget the A/B switch just use your VCR to switch. I got myself a splitter from RS and use it to split the cable between the TV and the cable box.

I can record the analog channels and the digital ones using this method. I can also watch the analog channels on my TV while recording something. The one thing I can't do is record 1 digital channel and watch another. I'd need another cable box for that.

Let me know if you need any pointers on how to do the setup. It's probably similar to what Marty is doing.



#4 of 26 MickeS

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Posted August 14 2001 - 04:12 AM

I do the same thing as Andrew.

If you can afford it and if you do a lot of recording on digital while watching other digital channels, you can of course always pony up the 10 bucks or so a month to get a second cable box to hook up to the VCR.

/Mike
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#5 of 26 Ian_Fisher

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Posted August 14 2001 - 02:02 PM

I hate to sound like a bonehead...I just got digital cable myself. I have a splitter that splits the cable going out of the cable box. It goes to both my TV, and my VCR. But, I've tried, and I'm only able to get ANY picture on my TV and VCR if I have their chanels set to 3 and then they show just what chanel the cable box is set to.

I also wanted my cable box to send the picture through my reciever (trough a yellow 'RCA'-type cable...I forget what they are really called), and then go from there to my TV, but again, when I have my TV set to the 'reciever' picture, I don't get anything... it has to go through the TV and I need the TV set to channel '3'.

What am I doing wrong?

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Ian M. Fisher
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#6 of 26 Dan_K

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Posted August 14 2001 - 02:10 PM

Ian_Fisher: Split the cable before it goes into the cable box. You will not likely be able to record premium channels, but you will be able to record normal channels.

The other option is to lease two digital cable boxes then you will be able to watch all channels while recording from any channel.

I hope that helps! Posted Image

#7 of 26 Ian_Fisher

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Posted August 14 2001 - 02:16 PM

BEFORE! yeah...that works better.

Posted Image

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#8 of 26 Bob Morgan

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Posted August 14 2001 - 06:28 PM

This is the 21st Century and there is no normal way to hook up a cable box to record one show while watching another?
Man, that really is something.
So, let me get this straight. I probably need another receiver to record The Sopranos while the family watches another show. Or, I can get a splitter, but I won't be able to record anything from HBO, or Cinemax? I mean I don't care whether it's analog, or digital. I just want to see the show. I work 3-11 full time. I work every other weekend. So, one week I can watch The Sopranos and the next I have to record it.
Then there is Buffy which is going to be rerun on FX. Then there is the new fall season coming up.
I gotta lot of shows to tape since I'm working during Primetime.
So, I'd be better off not having digital cable and just going back to standard cable. That way all I have to do is order HBO and I'll be able to record and watch a different channel.
Upgrade my a**.
Now, my VCR is around 5 years old. It tunes in 125 channels. Do the newer VCRs have more channels I can tune in, or is it still the same?

Andrew Beacom, if you could give me some advice on what type of splitter and how to set it up I would appreciate it.

All I can do is experiment right now as I am committed to 90 days of evaluation.

Thanks for all the replies.



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#9 of 26 MickeS

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Posted August 14 2001 - 06:55 PM

Quote:
So, I'd be better off not having digital cable and just going back to standard cable.

Pretty much. I HATE digital cable, except for the channel guide, and all the additional HBO channels.

However, even with analog cable you need a cable box to watch HBO (at least in my cable system), so you'd be stuck having to use a splitter just like for digital cable. That's why I keep digital cable. If I didn't have HBO, I'd skip it and live happily without any cablebox at all.

/Mike

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/Mike

#10 of 26 Andrew Beacom

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Posted August 15 2001 - 03:09 AM

Also in the WTF stakes with Digital Cable is that the box has no timer. I know someone at work with dish and she is able to program her Dish reciever to turn on/off during the day. With my digital cable box I have to leave the cable box on when I go to work. And forget taping more than 1 digital channel during the day.

I have the Radio Shack Gold Series 2-way cable splitter. My layout is actually a little compilcated due to PIP but I'll give you a run down and you can ask questions from there:

Wall -- Coax --> Splitter -- Coax --> Digital Cable Box -- (Line out) Composite (Line In) --> VCR -- (SVideo Out) SVideo (Video 1) --> TV and
Splitter -- Coax (Ant 1) --> TV -- (Ant out) Coax (Ant In) --> VCR -- (Ant out) Coax (Ant 2) --> TV

Clear as mud right? I normally watch cable via DCB->VCR->TV. TV has to be switched to Video 1 and VCR to Rear Line In. When I record analog channels I set the VCR to whatever the channel is as per normal recording. When I record digital stuff I set the VCR channel to Rear Line In and leave the DCB turned on AND set to the right channel.

In my setup the coax cable from the TV to the VCR is what allows it to time shift. The coax cable from thr VCR back to the TV (Ant 2) is used for PIP. I think this last cable is unnecessary as I can get away with watching Video 1 and using Ant 1 for PIP. This cable does allow me to watch analog channels and have PIP while the VCR is in use (I think) but it's not something that I recall ever doing.



#11 of 26 Michael*K

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Posted August 15 2001 - 03:28 AM

I have basic analog cable, since I insist on being able to watch one thing and tape another. If I got a cable box for HBO, for example, I should spilt the coax before it reaches the box, right? Then run the line out of the box to the VCR and run the other line from the splitter to the TV? I guess I'd have to watch any premium channels through my VCR, but I'd still be able to watch basic on the TV while recording, correct?

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#12 of 26 Andrew Beacom

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Posted August 15 2001 - 06:52 AM

Michael,

Correct. The cable box can be hooked up straight to the TV but since this would mean no recording I don't know why anyone would do it that way.


#13 of 26 David Oliver

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Posted August 15 2001 - 09:10 AM

Try this then...TV, digital cable, VCR, DVD, and Tivo. So many wires....
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#14 of 26 Marty M

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Posted August 15 2001 - 10:52 AM

As I previously stated, I have my cables split and have an A/B switch. I can record any channel on my cable box, including all the HBO's. I don't think it will record in stereo though.

When I want to record something I set the cable box to the channel I want to record, I set the VCR to channel 4, or 3 in most cases, I switch the A/B switch and can watch basic channels through the TV tuner. My daughter lives in Lafayette, IN and they have new Motorola digital cable boxes that has a button on the remote to switch from cable box to TV tuner. Apparently Motorola has taken over General Instrument. I intend to call my local Insight Cable company to see if they are going to provide these boxes. The remote is also very nice.

This works fine for me. I seldom record much anymore. Also, in our area, I believe an extra cable box costs about $3 - $4.

[Edited last by Marty M on August 15, 2001 at 05:56 PM]
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#15 of 26 Ken Chan

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Posted August 15 2001 - 11:21 AM

What irks me about digital cable is the marketing message that being digital is automatically better. Heck, Morse code is basically digital communication. For anyone that remembers CGA, that was digital. While you basked in the glory of all four(?) colors -- black, white, green, and purple -- there were other computers with four thousand evil analog colors.

Yes, there are benefits, a channel guide and consistency of transmission -- you get the exact same overly-compressed low-quality picture that left the central office. I'll stick with analog cable so I can use my PIP and POP, thank you.

While we're at it, why is the analog cable box so hot all the time, even when it is "off"? It probably rivals my refrigerator for the biggest heat-generator in the house, and it's not even doing anything useful.

//Ken

#16 of 26 Andrew Beacom

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Posted August 16 2001 - 02:56 AM

>>you get the exact same overly-compressed low-quality picture that left the central office.<<

My analog channels are the same quality they were before I got digital cable and most of the digital channels are better. The Encore movie channels for example are are among the best TV channels I have ever seen.

As with everything else there is no standard from area to area. Dish and DirecTV are supposed to be higher quality yet you hear complaints about poor quality and signal compression with these also. It just depends on your local area.

I am able to use both PIP and POP btw.

Marty,

I have Insight also. Do you have a GE with Dolby Digital printed on the front of the box but only analog audio out and composite video out on the back? Thats what I got.



#17 of 26 Marty M

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Posted August 16 2001 - 04:26 AM

Andrew,

My cable box has the same thing as yours does.
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#18 of 26 Gord Lacey

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Posted August 16 2001 - 05:53 AM

Here's my setup for my digital cable...

Coax split (#1) with one going into VCR 1, then coax into TV - This allows me to record any regular analog channel and watch any analog channel on TV. This is a regular non-digital cable setup.

Coax split (#2) going into Digital cable box, RCA Out from Digital Cable box into VCR 1 rear input, Coax into VCR #2, Coax from VCR #2 into VCR #3, Coax from VCR #3 into ANT input on the Sony Wega - This allows me to record whatever is on the digital cable box on VCR #2 and VCR #3 (this is the only source they can record from) or record the digital cable on VCR #1 using the RCA input from the DC box. I can also watch digital cable on the TV using the "Ant" input on the TV.

S-Video from Digital cable into TV and digital audio into receiver - This is how I normally watch digital cable, selecting the input on the TV.

So this configuration allows me to watch and record a digital signal on up to 3 VCRs, record a digital signal on 2 VCRs and tape an analog channel and watch either digital or analog (analog can be different from the one taping), or a few other combinations.

Why do I need 3 VCRs? Duh....I watch lots of TV. It was also handy when Sopranos was on and I had friend who wanted to borrow tapes. I'd tape it on one VCR for myself, and tape another "lender" tape that I didn't expect to ever see again. I know it's extreme, but we're living in extreme times! I know some of you understand Posted Image

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#19 of 26 Bob Morgan

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Posted August 16 2001 - 06:00 PM

Damn, these double shifts are going to be the death of me!
Guess what? I DON'T GET F**KING FX. I have all these goddamn channels and no FX channel. WTF?
I am NOT a happy camper at the moment.
Anyway, thanks for all the replies. I appreciate it.
Yours steamingly,

Bob "F**cked in the ass again" Morgan
Jeez, I just assumed......
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#20 of 26 David Williams

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Posted August 17 2001 - 05:47 AM

Quote:
Guess what? I DON'T GET F**KING FX

Bob, I feel your pain. Posted Image No Buffy can drive you insane... I've been living in a UPN & WB-less world for 6 years now. Now with Buffy syndicated I can enjoy what all those people are talking about... hopefully one of the networks in Ohio will be carrying Buffy in weekend syndication.
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