Cable TV Help Topics

Here are some tips for the most common user related issues.



Digital TV Connection in Your Dorm Room

Make sure your TV is plugged in to a working electric outlet. Locate the TV outlet in your room and connect one end of the coaxial cable to it and the other end to the "CATV" or "VHF IN" on your television. Do not connect to the "UHF IN" on your television.

Your digital television must have a QAM tuner (Quadrature Amplitude Modulation) to work with the school's cable service. The QAM tuner allows your TV to receive high definition cable programming without a cable set top box. Unfortunately, some less expensive TVs come with a low quality QAM tuner that may not be able to pick up all the digital channels. You should verify the specifications when you purchase your TV. 


A NTSC (National Television System Committee) tuner is not compatible. This TV will require a digital-to-analog converter box to view television signals. (see information below to purchase a converter).


An ATSC (Advanced Television Systems Committee) tuner can receive digital signals but is not compatible with the school's cable system.


Here is an informal compatibility reference for newer devices. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information. You should verify the specifications when you purchase your TV.

     Coby - Model TFTV3229 32" has a compatible QAM tuner

     Dynex - Only limited models have a QAM tuner

     Element - Some models do have a QAM tuner that can be unlocked with a code. 

                   ELEFW-195 is NOT compatible 

                   ELEFW-328 is NOT compatible

     Insignia - Only limited models have a QAM tuner
     LG - Most models since 2007 have a QAM tuner

     Olevia - Model 226-T11 has a compatible QAM tuner

     Samsung - All models since 2009 have a QAM tuner 
     Sansui - Model HDLCD3212C has a compatible QAM tuner

     Sony - Most models since 2007 have a QAM tuner
     Sylvania - Do not appear to have QAM tuners
     Toshiba - Most models since 2007 have a QAM tuner
     Vizio - Model VOJ320F1A has a compatible QAM tuner

     Westinghouse - Some models do have a QAM tuner. Try activation code 14159

                          DWM32H1G1 is NOT compatible

                          DWM42F2G1 is NOT compatible



How do I program my digital TV to receive all the University channels?

If you have a digital TV not connected to a cable receiver, it is important to do a channel scan on your TV to ensure you are viewing all the available analog and digital channels. Exact details on how to auto program or auto tune digital TVs vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and from model to model.  These instructions are generalizations that are meant to describe the way most TVs accomplish this feature.  For best results, refer to the owner’s manual for the specific TV you are working with. Most TVs will take between 20-45 minutes to complete this function.

Using the TVs remote control, follow these general steps:

   Step 1:  Press the “Power” button to turn on the TV
   Step 2:  Press the “Menu” Button
   Step 3:  Select “Set-Up”
   Step 4:  Select “Antenna” then “Cable”
   Step 5:  Select “Auto Program/Auto Tune/Channel scan” then “OK”



How to address common reception issues?
No picture on one or all channels, no color, buzzing sounds, dark or rolling pictures, stations on wrong channel, vertical bars, snowy pictures, etc. Typically these types of problems can be a result of a system wide issue, in room cabling issue or the television and/or connected devices to the television.

First, check to see if a neighbor in another room is experiencing the same problem. If not, if possible, try to connect your television to another outlet where another television is not experiencing a problem. If a neighbor is experiencing the same problem or the problem is associated with your outlet, please call helpdesk support as per the procedures for your school.

Second, disconnect any other devices attached to your television, such as digital receivers, DVD player, Xboxes, etc. so that the coaxial cable is connected directly from the television to the outlet. If this addresses the problem, then reconnect the devices to isolate out the device creating the problem. If you have an external Blu-Ray player or game consul , make sure the accessory consul and the television are both set to the same channel (3 or 4).

Last, adjust the fine-tuning settings on your television. Check your television’s user guide for more information.

Dark picture? Slowly adjust your TV's brightness and/or contrast control

Rolling picture? Slowly adjust your TV's vertical hold.

Picture leans to side? Try adjusting the "horizontal hold" on your TV.

Can't tune in desired channel? Determine if you are able to tune the channel using the tuning buttons on the digital receiver or Blu-Ray player. If so, the problem is likely your remote control. Make sure the channel is not restricted by the parental control feature or has not been subscribed to for billing purposes.



How do I make my analog TV work on the school’s digital cable system?
If you have an older analog television and your school cable system is digital, your television cannot receive the signal without use of a digital-to-analog converter box. 

Campus Televideo has tested and recommends Technicolor DCI 401 because it is a “100% compatible” model. The box is made by the manufacturer of the COM1000 and is $108.00 shipped. All standard definition and high definition channels will pass through the converter and display on an analog television.  Your high definition (HD) channels will be scaled down and will not be in a true HD format but will be viewable.

There are cheaper set top box converters that are 99% compatible (occasionally has closed caption or EAS freeze).

Click here to purchase DCI401

Click here to download DCI401 User Manual 


Why does my digital TV show channels with decimals or dashes? 

On a digital cable television system, the “physical” channel numbers have decimals or dashes. However, some systems are designed to also provide “virtual” channel numbers (VCNs)  that present the channel as a digit whole number. Unfortunately, different model digital TVs have different types of channel tuners and not all tuners can pick up the VCNs. 

If you have a digital HDTV that will not recognize the whole number virtual channel after a channel scan, be sure to check the settings in the set-up menu – including setting the clock if your TV has one.  If this does not work, your TV tuner is probably not capable of presenting the virtual channels and you have the following options:

  1. Do nothing and use the physical channel numbers. You can tune to sub-channels just as you would tuen to a normal channel. 
  2. Purchase a newer model HDTV with an NTSC Clear QAM tuner that you know can recognize whole number virtual channels.
  3. Purchase a set-top box with an NTSC Clear QAM tuner that will recognize the VCNs. This could be either the latest model TIVO or you can purchase the above mentioned set-top box model: DCI401 for $136.



Why do I only get channels up to Channel 13?

Most television sets have settings to enable reception from either an Off-Air Antenna or from Cable service. The campus cable system requires your television to be set to "Cable" (or "CATV", "CATV - IRC"). If your television is set to "Off-Air" (or "Antenna") you must change this setting to enable reception of all cable channels. This setting may be changed either by moving a switch or by following menu prompts for set-up. Refer to your owner's manual for more details. You will need to reprogram/scan your TV once you make the change.



How do I connect my computer to the CATV system?

Television signals may be viewed on your computer by using a special PC TV card. Refer to the equipment manufactures manual for installation details. Be aware that performance and quality varies according to the equipment used.


How can I record shows on TV?

To record programs you must have a recorder such as TiVo or Boxee.