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Pixellation & 8801 Code

Pixellation & 8801 Code

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Copper Contributor Weezknight
Copper Contributor
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎07-31-2009
Message 1 of 10
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I'm brand new to FiOS and have been really enjoying the service.  It seems, though, that each day a handful of channels are very pixellated and then just turn off, with the message to call and provide an 8801 quick code.

 

This morning it was at least Showtime2-West (and could've been others).  Last night it was Nick2, The N, and Noggin.  The night before it was a different group of channels.  Are these just general "outages" that occur from time-to-time?  It just seems that at any given moment I always have some channels that are unavailable, and I'm just wondering if this is something I need to worry about?

 

During install all of my boxes tested "very high" according to the installer, so I know my coax isn't a problem.  Also are there are certain channels that are unavailable completely.  Since install the "Soundtrack Channel" has never worked, and I know there are 1 or 2 others.

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Bronze Contributor II
Bronze Contributor II
Posts: 206
Registered: ‎11-21-2008
Message 2 of 10
(15,232 Views)

Well, mine might be the same problem you see.

 

My cable comes in perfect, 100% signal strength on all channels but two which has a 50% signal strength

 

I tried new cable, etc, no luck.

 

So I am assuming it is a FiOS headend or node error, just too tired to report it and have their tech have me try 200 things we know wont work (like power box, power tv, put finger in air towards east coast, not try west coast, do phones work, etc etc.) and then tell me they will report it, and nothing happens to my report.

 

Contributor pderby
Contributor
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎07-31-2009
Message 3 of 10
(15,227 Views)

I'm a new Verizon FIOS/TV customer as of July 22.  I have exactly the same problem.  My setup is 3 set top boxes, two HD and one standard.

 

One of the HD boxes receives all the channels just fine.  The other HD box receives all but 11 channels, so hundreds of channels work fine these 11 have problems. (I spent an hour working my way through the entire set of channels).  Five of them pixelate, 6 of them get no signal.  These same 11 channels come in just fine on the other set top box.   

 

I've called Verizon and got "canned advice" like unplug and plug in the set top box, unplug and plug in the coax cable, etc.  None of these remedies did anything.  I did call and got a Verizon employee in the Salt Lake City call center that seemed to know what she was doing rather than just reading screens to me.  This employee did a reset of just the problematic set top box reloading the encryption codes into the box.  These codes are used to decode the signal.  This fixed 2 of the pixelated channels.  Her advice was to swap out the set top box if the problem continued.  This evening I'm going to trade the set top box locations and see if the problem "moves" with the swap or stays.  It is my understanding that Verizon has to reset the unscramble codes, that power cycling the box  or removing and reattaching the coax doesn't reload the descramble codes into the set top box.  I may be wrong on this....

 

I don't think it is a signal strength problem.  The installer checked the signal strength and it was well within spec.  The channels with the problems don't clump around any specific frequency, either.  All the coax seems to be sound and the connectors are all solid and high quality.  With around a 1,000 channels coming in just fine it is hard to believe the fiber or coax is the problem!

 

 If the problem "moves" I'll have Verizon ship a replacement set top box.

Copper Contributor Weezknight
Copper Contributor
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎07-31-2009
Message 4 of 10
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Well I spent about a half-hour on the phone with Verizon support.  We moved the HD-DVR box to another room and all of the channels came in perfectly, so it was not a STB issue.  Even though it was getting a perfect signal, the CSR seemed to believe it was a coax problem, which they would charge me for.

 

I decided before they dispatched a truck that I'd check things out myself.  Lucky for me I had 2 runs of cable running parallel in our basement.  The installer had used the RG6 cable marked "digital" that Dish Network had installed.  Next to that was a 15-year old RG5 coax cable that the previous owner of my house had run to split his signal throughout the home.

 

Long story short, the "new" RG6 cable that Dish had used was garbage.  As soon as I switched to the 15-year old cable, I had all of the channels coming in perfectly, without any pixellation.

 

Anyone having this problem should look into installing a new cable run as it seems that even if the tests are reading "perfect" there may be some minor flaws in the cable that will mess up some channels.

 

Message Edited by Weezknight on 08-03-2009 04:12 AM
Contributor pderby
Contributor
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎07-31-2009
Message 5 of 10
(15,137 Views)

Weezknight, I have the same situation with pixellation on one HD set.  Before condemning the RG6 that was installed when my house was built 10 years ago a couple of questions.

 

-  Are there any splitters on your Dish Network cable that are not on your old cable?  Just wondering if your solution might possibly have been getting rid of splitters or bad terminators rather than the cable?

 

If both cables have good RF connectors on the ends and no splitters, then sounds like bad coax was definitely your culprit!

 

Congratulations on solving your problem. 

 

 

Copper Contributor Weezknight
Copper Contributor
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎07-31-2009
Message 6 of 10
(15,115 Views)
There were no splitters on the cable.  This was a straight run from the new Fios splitter to the TV.  The only difference was the RF connector on the one end.  It looks like the Verizon installer had cut the RG6 to shorten the run a bit and then crimped a new connector on.  Perhaps he made a bad crimp, but the others he did were top notch.  I'm just wondering, since Dish does all the cabling for free, if the RG6 was really that good of a quality to begin with?
Contributor pderby
Contributor
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎07-31-2009
Message 7 of 10
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Well, if the cable was in interior walls and it worked for the Dish Network HD signals, it would seem it would work for the FIOS HD signal, too.

 

If the Verizon installer did crimp a new connector on, that might be the problem.  It just takes one stray wire to short to the coax jacket to internal wire and you have a problem.  

 

But since you had a "backup" coax that works, you are all set! 

Bronze Contributor II
Bronze Contributor II
Posts: 206
Registered: ‎11-21-2008
Message 8 of 10
(15,007 Views)

Mine was a crimp problem too.

 

I cut off the one Verizon put on, and did one myself carefully cutting the extra shield wires, voila!  All channels!

 

Gold Contributor III
Gold Contributor III
Posts: 2,325
Registered: ‎08-05-2008
Message 9 of 10
(14,993 Views)

@philhu wrote:

Mine was a crimp problem too.

 

I cut off the one Verizon put on, and did one myself carefully cutting the extra shield wires, voila!  All channels!

 


I'd be surprised if Verizon put on a crimp connector.  The industry standard is now a compression fitting (more robust and more reliable).

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Contributor pderby
Contributor
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎07-31-2009
Message 10 of 10
(14,989 Views)
Yes, compression connectors are better than crimped connectors, but either one will cause problems if just one tiny, fine shielding wire is in the wrong place and shorts to the transmission wire.   My installer also used compression fittings and it looks like he did a great job, but I still have pixellation and will probably put new compression connections on my cable just to be sure that isn't the source of my problem.  Will probably be a couple of weekends from now.  Too many things to do with higher priority!
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