FiOS TV + CableCARD + MacBook Pro = works?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Zipforia, Sep 25, 2013.

  1. Zipforia macrumors member

    Dec 11, 2010
    I have FiOS tv plan and want to get a cableCARD for my MacBook Pro so that I can watch all my (premium channels and local, if I can) on my computer. Will this work?

    I have few questions regarding this:

    1. Is this even possible with FiOS?
    2. If so, which cableCARD would you recommend?
    3. Do I need another set top box in my office for this to work? Or is this as simple as attaching a coax cable from my wall to the cableCARD then attaching the cableCARD to my mac via USB?
    4. Will Verizon charge me because I'm doing this?

    Thank you in advance...and if you can...please explain it as simple as possible (and limit the acronyms) since I'm a newbie to this whole thing. Thanks again!

  2. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    Except for media servers, I am not aware of any computer from any manufacturer that accepts CableCARD. CableCARD is a PCMCIA card that takes the place of your cable provider's set top box. It decodes the provider's scrambled signals and allows the built-in tuner of your digital TV or DVR to handle program selection. CableCARD is provided by your local cable franchise for its programming. Best Buy and Frye's do not sell them. You cannot use a CableCARD from Time Warner to decode programming on Verizon FiOS or Comcast Xfinity.
  3. Zipforia thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 11, 2010
    Ah! That is good to know.

    So then I guess I need to rephrase my question:

    Having a FiOS TV plan, how can I watch my channels on a Mac without having to get another Set Top Box? I have a coax out in my home office that is connected to my FiOS (in other rooms, the coax out is connected to a Verizon set top box to watch TV). What can I connect to the coax out to watch TV from my Mac? Thanks!

  4. Jstarko0329 macrumors newbie

    Jun 9, 2007
    There aren't many options for OS X and CableCARD due to the restrictive licensing that CableCARD requires. The only option I can think of that fits your needs is the HDHomeRun Prime. However, it requires Windows.
  5. Outrigger macrumors 68000


    Dec 22, 2008
    As far as I know, there is no way to watch every single channel on your macbook or any computer thats offered through your set-up box, without actually getting another set-up box. Fios so far hasn't offered a watch any channels on your mobile devices/computers like that of Time Warner and such. Even if you get another set-up box, you would have to get another device (Elgato EyeTV ($169) in order watch it on your computer.
  6. waw74 macrumors 68030

    May 27, 2008
    you do understand that with cablecard you still need a tuner (box of some kind)?
    the card goes into that tuner, and lets you access the encrypted channels, it's nothing more than a key.

    you will have to rent the card from verizon, on Time warner it's cheaper than a cable box. (last time i checked it was $2-3 a month)

    the problem is the copyright flags. Currently the only thing that can handle these is windows media center.

    some broadcasters set these, others don't, you'll need to search the web to find out if fios does or not.
    apparently Time Warner Manhattan marks everything copy-once.

    siliconDust is supposedly coming out with a tuner in the next few months that has cablecard and onboard h.264 hardware re-encode, so it takes care of the copy flags.
    (It was announced in January for summer release, now they're saying by January next year)

    from their current tuners
  7. Zipforia thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 11, 2010
    Thanks for the info, guys.

    Maybe I'll just run a wire from set-top-box to EyeTV.

  8. Giuly, Sep 28, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2014
  9. ftaok macrumors 603


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    Have you looked at Slingbox? It's a box you plug into your FiOS STB and it allows you to watch the output of that STB over the network. They have SD and HD models as well. Some models even have a tuner, but not with CableCard.

    The catch is that you are tying up that STB, so your Mac would be watching whatever the connected STB is tuned to, or vice versa.

    If that's not a problem, then Slingbox could be for you. They have competitors in the arena as well. The Vulcano and Broadway might also suit your needs.

    Last point, if you're not interested in watching live TV, you could get a Tivo and connect the Tivo with the Mac (via network) to offload recorded shows.

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