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Cogeco Digital Conversion in KINGSTON - letters are out.

The letters, the notices, and the information flyers concerning the COGECO CABLE Digital Conversion are out in KINGSTON.

Some Key dates mentioned in the KINGSTON paperwork received:

Before Feb 10, 2012
- They'd like you to contact them, *IF* you need to make some Option choices or decisions regarding your service and equipment with them.

Starting the week of Feb 27, 2012
- Is when you are expected to receive any Digital Adaptors boxes (& remote) or Digital Receivers boxex (& remote) you may need or may have ordered.

March 13, 2012
- Some of the Analog channels above ch 13 will be converted to Digital / "will no longer be available" in Analog.

April 27, 2012
- "Last Opportunity to take advantage of the Digital Adaptor Offer"

For CUSTOMERS who are still ANALOG Only ...

They describe a few options ...

Seems they are offering Analog customers TWO (2) Digital Adaptors "Free of Charge" ... and giving a small discount as well for 12 months.

(Sounds like they'll send one (1) Digital Adaptor by default ... you must contact them to request the second free one ... or for other options described.)

You can get additional Digital Adaptors (#3 and #4) for $2/month each.

And there is a little additional flyer showing which of KINGSTON's previously Analog channels will be converted to Digital.

They give a web address to view channel listings / changes by location.
( It varies by location )

"For more information: visit cogeco.ca/digitalnow "
 

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Cogeco Kingston - Analog channels being migrated to digital

From a small insert flyer received in Kingston:

Mentions:

Here are the channels that will be migrated to digital and no longer available in Analog as of March 13, 2012

14 Much More Music
15 CNN
16 TLC
17 The Score
18 Musique Plus
19 A&E
20 CMT
21 E!
22 Spike TV
32 HGTV
33 W Network
35 The Discovery Channel
38 Bravo
39 TV5
40 City TV
41 The Food Network
42 Showcase
43 The History Channel
44 The Comedy Network
45 Teletoon
46 Speed Channel
50 Space
51 Family Channel
52 The Golf Channel
53 Sportsnet
54 TVtropolis
55 CNBC

For more information :
visit cogeco.ca/digitalnow
or call 1-866-560-8444


I went to the website mentioned above. cogeco.ca/digitalnow

You end up at web page with a pull down menu and you select your CITY, and then it presents you with a channel listing / table for your area.

Three columns in that channel list table showing:

Analogue Channels / Channels with Digital Adaptor / Channels with Digital Receiver

In white and blue back grounds - showing those channels being migrated.
... something like that.


Selecting KINGSTON:

There's a 4 Page, printable version of the table.

A red coloured "PDF" ICON appears in the top right corner "Printable Version".

I printed it out for reference back in Kingston.

If I understand the table correctly ...

Down the list, on pages 2, 3, and 4 of the printout, in the center column, it looks like the Digital Adaptor will give some extra channels not previously available with Analog cable.

... Channels after ch 97. Channels in the range 109-298 and 555, 596 are shown. (some other TV channels and Radio Stations in 281-298 ch range).

Also, in the first column, Analog Value Pack, not sure ... but it looks like some channels in the range 56-97 are shown in white, not blue, and I assume that might mean they will also remain on Analog / perhaps for a time.
These Ones Are:

56 CTV NEWSNET
58 TSN
64 Slice
67 TFO
68 CFTM Montreal
69 OLA
70 RDI
95 OLN
96 APTN
97 CPAC

Not totally sure how this will all work out ... guess we'll have to wait and see what happens back in Kingston after the migration date.

I wonder what has been happening in other COGECO areas.

Has anyone received similar letters and paper work elsewhere ?

How has the migration gone elsewhere out there in COGECO LAND ?
 

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Cogeco Digital ADAPTOR - how do you find them?

Great.

Wondering what the Cogeco Digital Adaptors are like.

What sort of outputs do they have?

Opinions or information on how they function.

Good / ok ? Setup? (should be fairly easy ... but wanted to ask)

Menus? Options?

How about the remote? Functions and features?

Any other information that you think might be important or useful on your Cogeco Digital Adaptor.

Any Manufacturer and Model number info on them that someone could look up on the internet to have a peek ?

Thanks.

( and oh ya ... when you hook it up - how is the service with the Adaptor? Channels all good / ok / all channels there as mentioned ? Picture & sound ok?
Channel switching speed? Functionality ? )

Anything you can think of ... sort of like an over all review ... thanks.
 

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Thanks. That helps some.

Just from looking at the images in the manual and reading it, from the link above:

It looks like the Cogeco Digital Adaptor:

- only has an RF output and switchable for ch 3 or 4 out.
( ? no other type of outputs like composite or S-video or RCA audio L/R ? )

- has a volume control on the remote

- the Adaptor's Remote will work like a universal remote, perhaps to turn your TV on and off, with some setup - similar to how you set up a universal remote. ( I hope they provide some "direct code entry" method and lists, for the brands / models of TV )

- looks like it is powered by an AC Adaptor "Wall Wart".

- the IR Extender ( Remote Control Infrared Extender ) looks like an interesting feature.

- Since they sort of function "like" the digital boxes / are a digital device - they'll have to be hooked up, powered up, and activated with a call to COGECO with the serial numbers of the Adaptors written down and handy.

- will NOT allow or give "Cogeco on demand programming"

- will NOT give the "on screen channel guide" except perhaps the scrolling guide we get by tuning in to the scrolling guide channel ( ch 23 analog in Kingston currently ).


Thoughts:

... On the whole ... they look pretty good - for what they are designed to do.

We'll have to see when we actually get these "ADAPTORS" and hook them up and use them, how well they work in actual operation. But I'm guessing they'll work fine. Time will tell.

According to the channel lists Cogeco has, the Adaptors will give some extra channels not previously available on just Analog service.

Wish they had more "output" options on the Adaptor - like Composite Video Out and S-Video out and RCA stereo audio out L / R
(i.e. RCA outs - yellow white red and S-Video out options at the back)

Because - if, as they mention, the digital migration will provide a better and clearer picture ... one might want to take advantage of that by using something like an S-Video connection. (or even a Component -RGB connection, even if the Adaptors are not in HD - not in High Def. and even if you just have older TV's that are not HD - like older CRT's Cathode Ray Tubes - you might just want to hook up your TV or equipment that way, anyway)
 

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Cogeco - Forced Digital Migration

OK. I knew it would happen eventually, but I"m still not happy about it.

Got a letter in the mail from Cogeco saying that analogue service will be discontinued on July 4. It seems they've hired a bunch new CS Reps to handle the influx of calls. I spoke to one this morning who sounded about 12, and spoke to me ve-e-e-ry slo-o-o-wly so I could understand. :rolleyes:

Before I spill off on a rant, I'll ask here, as tech support didn't provide a satisfying answer, and you-all probably know better than they do. :p

I have Classic Analogue cable and I have a stand-alone DVR. Works great for my needs. I can record a show, watch a different show while recording, or chase a show that's still recording. Works great. Suits my purposes just fine.

So with the "Digital Adapter", I can only record the program that the adapter is currently tuned to. I get it, and obviously this is useless.

I do not want, nor feel I should have to pay for, a Cogeco PVR.

So, with the standard receiver or standard HD receiver, am I able to somehow set it up so I can record a program without having to leave it turned on and set to the channel I want to record?

I thought I saw on the Cogeco site says they can be programmed to turn on at set times, and presumably select a channel. It would mean programming both the Rx and the DVR to record a show, but at least it could be done. Tech Support said it wasn't possible, that I'd have to have a neighbor come to my house every day while I was on vacation to set the channel on the Rx so I could record different shows... :eek:
 

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My Pace box (non-DVR) allows me to set a "recording" in the guide, I then also set the DVD recorder as well. I haven't tried setting a "manual" recording, I generally just use the guide. So, I don't know how far into the future you'd be about to set it.

I should also add, my old Motorola box lost this features ages ago in a software update. Seems it was a bit too much for it, so the feature was dropped.
 

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Basically - when you get the digital adaptor, or take one of their digital boxes or PVR's - they begin to control your life.

[ Personally - I won't let them - I'd shut them out before they did get any sort of idea that they might control me like that. And then I went partly OTA. ]

Yes, you should be able to record the ch 3 or ch 4 analog output of the digital adaptor, and you will have to change the channel on the digital adaptor or digital box yourself.

There's something called an IR Blaster, which some use to change channels with a recorder timer, probably with a computer - gets complex.

Life generally gets alot more complex.

You could look into a recorder or receiver that receives QAM - and see if COGECO there has unencrypted digital channels on QAM. But the QAM channels keep moving channel assignments, and could get encrypted at any time. Not a real solution.

Real solution: Dump Cogeco. The content / for the price - sort of sucks anyway. That is what I noted.

For now, in Kingston, we carry on with the 2 Digital Adaptors they (were forced) to give us - when we declined (ignored) any offer they sent us to switch to digital ourselves. [ We "waited them out" haa haa ]

We too were grandfathered on an older analog cable package - and Cogeco had to do something with us.

... but if it were solely my choice - I would have handed COGECO back their digital adaptors long ago. Cancelled service. And be done with them.

They don't listen to customer requests and suggestions either.
Cogeco = Block Wall (my personal experience)

Oh well ... maybe things will change in time. Not sure.



tried setting a "manual" recording
my old Motorola box lost this features ages ago in a software update
Yup - that's how they begin to "Control your life".

I rest my case.
 

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Not everyone feels the same way as you mrvanwrinkles. A lot of people dont use vcrs or dvd recorders any more, and have switched to a technology called PVR which has been around for the last 10 years or so, sure it costs more, but whos to say VCR's didn't cost so much when they were first introduced? i remember my dad paid 400 and up for a VCR back in the day. At the end of the day it comes down to this ,if you want Cable TV, then there you go, if you want the ability to record one show while watching another (dual tuner) then the only way to go is PVR, as the DTA box is a single tuner, and your old vcr and dvd recorders tuner are now incompatible, also pretty much obsolete.

I'm not trying to defend the cable company for this type of decision, but at the same time, i also see the need for technology to ADVANCE, its 2013, and were still using ANALOG cable signals? and for some reason people dont wanna let go? wow, if you just thinka bout it and look at the big picture and not just care about yourself but realise your discision prevents companies from advancing in technology, maybe you will understand a bit more about the big picture here? just sayin.
 

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Yes, I understand your discussion Paolo.


Kingston has a bit of a situation with the default BDU there.


In Kingston, content and channels have slowly been downgraded or removed, or moved away to other services and "tiers".

And prices have consistently and regularly been increased.

... over the years. (many years)


These issues has been brought up with the BDU in person by me - several ways and several times.

They're only response has been: Sorry, that's just the way it is, and we don't feel we can do anything for you.

And:
You need to get a Full HD box / possibly with PVR, and pay more monthly for our equipment rental, and also pay a fair bit more for different channel packages, to get that same sort of content you used to get before ... or to get some of the content and channels you are asking about.

We've been a very long time customer of theirs.

We get the distinct impression it's a bit of GOUGE and Money Grab.
The way they set up the channel packages and prices etc.
The "Game" they play with the prices and the channel packages.

... and this is not unique to just Kingston
(many mention the same thing in many different places and with many different BDU's)


So ... the household decision has just been sort of NEUTRAL so far.

We'll just KEEP the existing BDU service that we have, by default, and do NOTHING different or new for now.

Change nothing for now.

They keep making offers for more TV service, or "internet service" and "home phone" service.

But we just decline. No thank you.


Personally - having analysed it myself - I see better options with SHAW Satelite there in Kingston.

Many other Kingston residents - people I know - moved off BDU cable there, and went to a different service. ex. SHAW sat, or BELL sat. for many of the same reasons.

The default BDU there ... it may just take more time for their services and prices to improve.
[ Maybe, not sure ]

They're not HUGE like ROGERS or BELL - they're a little smaller, and that must pose some challenges for them.

Also - they've been in the process of doing their Digital Migrations, in all their areas - and seems they still are in that process.

So there are ongoing issues.

Bottom Line:

What we would be willing to pay, for the sort of content we would actually like.

What they would like to charge us for that, and the hoops we'd have to jump through to get it,
all considered ...
(with the necessary channel packages and special equipment rental or purchase required)

We are just way too far apart on what that number is.

So we just stay with the default "Basic" package we have always had - just for some reception.

And watch less TV, do something else, or get some alternate content via OTA .

[ We just don't have all the TIME, nor do we even WANT to watch all the channels and nonsense content that would HAVE to come along with those few channels that we really do desire ]


... the thing has been so "expoited" and "over-complicated" to the point that it is no longer entertaining nor desireable.

I watch a few key shows and programs that are of interest to me ...
And all the rest is just excess.

[ EXCESS ... ie. all that Reality and Idiot TV, Violence and bad stuff, bad Movies ... rots your mind ... and wastes your time anyway. I consider that neither actual content nor entertainment, nor educational nor interesting ]

No point in paying big bucks each month for very little that you actually watch - or even have the time to watch, nor even want to watch.

No sense in over complicating your life that way.

There are so many alternative activities and entertainment out there - compared to that.
ex. Tuesday deal day at the movie theatre. ( see a movie for just around $5 )
+ + + many other things ... too many to mention here - many alternatives to just watching BDU TV.

... they've priced and over-complicated themselves into irrelevence / possible extinction
 

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Cogeco is a pretty large cable system, they serve many large communities such as Hamilton, Burlington, Niagara, Windsor, Kingston, Peterborough, Pembroke etc.

All the BDU's that you mentioned have all forced customers to upgrade in some way. Both Rogers and Shaw Cable are migrating customers to digital just as Cogeco is doing and like Cogeco usually only provide one terminal or adapter free of charge.

Shaw Direct has migrated it's HD from QPSK to 8PSK and forced existing subs to get 8PSK compatible receivers and both Shaw Direct and Bell Satellite are forcing subs to move to MPEG-4 for HD.
 

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Well, I can't help but think some bean counter at the cable company had the realization that once everything is digital they can make more revenue by forcing customers to rent their (from what I hear) crappy PVR, since there is no other way to record.

But what about this "Tune Timer" function.

According to this:
http://cogeco.ca/web/resources/pdf/support/user_guides/tv/welcome_guide_en_q.pdf

I can do this:
-------------------
I want to record a digital channel while I am not home, what do I do?
  • Make sure your TV and VCR are set to channel 3.
  • Program your VCR to turn on at the appropriate time and make sure it remains
  • tuned to the proper input channel. Then you can turn off your VCR for Timer recording.
  • Set up Tune Timer
    1. go to MAIN MENU, then SETUP, and then TIMERS
    2. enable Timers by using right arrow button and set the desired date, frequency, time, duration, and channel for a program.
  • Ensure that the MUTE function is off.
------------------

Is the "Tune Timer" function what I'm looking for?
 

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Well, 45 minutes on the phone to Cogeco, and 6 transfers later, they finally ventured to confirm that "Tune Timer" will allow you to program the receiver to automatically turn on and off and tune to a specific channel. That's certainly better than the first answer I got which was, while on vacation, have a neighbor come over every day to change the channel on your receiver. :eek:

I asked about a "cooling off period" if I wasn't happy, since usually they lock you in for 12 months with a slight discount. They offered to let me pay full-pop for a month, then if I decide to continue I can call and still get the 12-month discount.

Fair enough.
 

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We got the same letter in the Burloak system. We lose one channel we watch through clear QAM.

We got an e-mail that they are changing our line up. We lose 3-5 channels and our price goes up!! :(
 

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In a Cogeco mailing received yesterday is a request for those who are using analogue TV's to put in an order for digital adapters / receivers by July 1st 2013.

A complete cessation of analogue broadcasting via Cogeco Cable will commence July 22nd 2013 in our area (east Hamiltion / Stoney Creek).

FYI

A zinger (not) in the letter, but on the web site for those don't read all the way though things:

"Important: Please be aware that if you do not accept delivery of the digital adapter and migration from the Classic Cable TV service to the new digital Classic Pack, we will be obligated to remove TV service from your Cogeco subscription."

Cameron
 

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^^^^
I'd expect that if they know you don't have at least a digital adapter, you're not going to be receiving TV from them. In that case, charging for something a customer is not getting might be considered fraud.
 

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^^^ The thin edge of the wedge is in the second paragraph of the last post by cableredneck.

The fact that the obvious isn't stated in the physical letter will catch, particularly older viewers, by surprise. It's no secret that many just don't (or can't) understand the nuances of all these technical changes and end up after some automatic rule / change takes place, a mass of confusion takes place.

And how about those who ONLY have analogue service... Will Cogeco hit them with a cancellation fee on top of the final bill when they don't understand things?

Poor marketing and communication I think...

Cameron
 

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I can't see Cogeco cancelling someone's service because they would lose money. I believe the adapters and receivers are free for now. CamDAB is probably correct in assuming that older viewers, and those less technically inclined, will have trouble with the receivers and adapters.
 
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