Originally Posted by sk1d
everytime I call all they do is reset my cable box or cable modem, and when that doesn't work 99% of the time, they book a service call for sometime next week, all of that after i've waited on hold for around a half hour.
That has been my experience too. Never had I had problems with signal levels before I bought my 6208. So I call to complain that some channels (the NHL channel, and couple of others), take eons to come in, and then once they are in they look fine. I also tell the CSR that it is interesting how the channels that wont come in are all located "high" in the frequency spectrum, as indicated by the "test mode menu". The CSR then told me that using the menu will "void my warranty"... I laughed at him so hard, as there is nothinig that can be changed in that menu. I also said that I came across it by accident, and if you dont want us to see it, you should lock it out.
Anyhow, so they kept me on hold for the usual 20 minutes while they talked amoungst themselves, went for coffee, answered a few more calls. We went through hooking the box into the wall directly (no splitter), switching cables etc. They said "we have to send a tech to look at your signal problems". I said OK, fine. So I had to be home from 5-8 or something like that, so I come home from work an hour early just to wait until 8:15 when the guy showed up.
Instantly, he looked at my high quality splitter and blamed that. (the same kind he eventually replaced it with, as Shaw came in and installed that one for the last owners). He also said that the cable I was using (quad shield Belden RG-6) was substandard quality, and the combination was causing the problem. I showed him the problem I was having, and he said, "oh yes, that is signal". He pulled out his little signal box and checked my line, replaced it and the splitter, and showed that there was a 0.2 db increase at 500Mhz when he replaced my cable and splitter with his. He tried to convince me that 0.2 db was huge in signal terms.
He left, without staying to check if the HUGE signal increase of 0.2db solved my problems. Of course it did not.
I decided to borrow a friends "IFR" spectrum analyzer, as I thought it might help me find out what the problem was. There was beautiful signal right up the spectrum until I reached about 604Mhz, where the signal started to get noisy. I decided to call Shaw and get directed to their signal problems resident tech to indicate my findings, pointing to an upstream cable problem that was not located within my house. He asked me how I found this info, and I explained how I found it using a spectrum analyzer. Instantly he reamed me out for hooking "non-approved" equipment to the line, and explained how it was a criminal offence to inject signals into the cable line. I simply just hung up, in absolute disgust, for an absolute lack of technical knowledge.
12 days later, I received a call from some guy who apologized for the last guy, and explained how with my tip they were able to find a broken coaxial connector on their main feedline amplifier for the block, and the problem should now be fixed. I turned on my TV, and amazingly enough, the problem was gone.
This reminded me of the days I used to live in West Vancouver before Rogers took over shaw. I was an avid scanner listener, and I would always wonder why my scanner would always get weird noises on particluar frequecies which would stop the scan. More research yielded that these were cable video carrier frequencies. So using some direction finding techniques, I located the problem on the pole outside my house. The hardline (coax) feeding the amplifier has been stretched and pinched in a windstorm, and the solid copper shield was split wide open. I called shaw, and they said they would send someone to look at it. Well 3 months went by and nothing. Every time it rained, our cable would go to hell, and their solution was to install a new amplifier, completely missing the REAL problem. It came to the point that I had to flag down a shaw truck I saw driving by one rainy day, and show him exactly where and what the problem was. He looked at it and said "wow, that is pretty serious... How long has it been like this?". Needless to say, it only took them another 8 months to replace the hardline run. There was another problem up the street, and me and a friend solved that one by climbing the pole and tightening the connector ourselves.
So I would have to say that they do solve problems, they just have to listen to some people that may be smarter than them on the subject from time to time.