digital cable, Satellite....confusion

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Tom_Price, Jan 2, 2003.

  1. Tom_Price

    Tom_Price Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey, I have digital cable by Charter. I don't understand how exactly it is digital. The receiver (by Motorola) has a Dolby Digital logo on the front of it, but there is no type of digital output on the back of the receiver at all. There is also no video out aside from a standard composite.

    My question is how do I get movies broadcast in 5.1 from HBO and the like if I don't have a digital output for that? BTW, what is the difference between satellite and digital cable?

    Thanks,
    TJ
     
  2. Jason_Els

    Jason_Els Screenwriter

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    Well TJ,
    The short answer is....you can't.
    I checked
    Charter's Cable Box User and Troubleshooting Guides and there are no digital ouputs on this box. What you see is what you get. The best you can get is stereo.
    If you have a digital receiver and/or a TV that can accept S-video I would call Charter and tell them this box is unacceptable. It's the lowest of the low. See if they have a box that has better outputs. This one is no better than your analog except that it gives you digital channels.
     
  3. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    "digital" cable is only digital for channels above 100

    Satellitte channels tend to be less compressed (though this may be changing for the worse) but overall the technologies are pretty much the same. Satellite also tends to be cheaper and you have more equipment choices
     
  4. Jason_Els

    Jason_Els Screenwriter

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    Not exactly true. Digital channels can exist on any channel number a cable company decides to assign them. All channels a subscriber receives on a digital cable system are received as digital regardless if the original signal is digital or analog.
     
  5. dave_brogli

    dave_brogli Screenwriter

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  6. Chris_HD

    Chris_HD Agent

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    I am a Charter Communications customer in Western Massachusetts. When I first ordered digital cable, the settop that was delivered was the Scientific Atlanta Explorer 3100. This box has both composite and S-Video output, as well as a coaxial digital audio output. All digital channels that were broadcasting Dolby Digital 5.1 audio were passed through just fine and decoded by my receiver. These were typically channels 100 and above.

    I now have Charter High Definition service. The 3100 was replaced by the SI 3100HD. This settop has the same outputs as the 3100 but adds a set of component outputs for high definition. It has a major flaw, where it does not scale or stretch 4:3 material for non-HD programming. Supposedly a new settop will be rolled out in the spring that solves this problem. In the meantime I use two inputs, one for HD, and one for the rest. I send the digital output to the HD input, and the analog ProLogic to the rest. This way I lose digital audio for everything (including digital music channels) except HD.

    Any questions let me know.
     
  7. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

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  8. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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  9. BruceSpielbauer

    BruceSpielbauer Second Unit

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    >>> All channels a subscriber receives on a digital cable system are received as digital regardless if the original signal is digital or analog
     

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