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I am not sure if this topic has been previously discussed here. I could find nothing on the matter...

I have just moved to a new condominium apartment in Bangkok which is covered by UBC Cable. I have an old set-top box (it was there): the brand is Scientific Atlanta, model 8603.

Although, the CATV converter seems to work when I connect it and power it on, it does not seem to unscramble the TV channels. In fact, when I tried it today, the only channel I could clearly receive was A1 (Adventure One, I think).

Is there any way I can have this CATV converter fixed in order to receive UBC TV channels? That would spare me from having to purchase (or rent) a new set-top box.

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It is my intention to subscribe anyway. In fact, in case I need to get a new box from UBC, I was thinking that perhaps I could use the old box I have with a 2nd TV set.

I am just wondering if there are any people on this forum who use (or who know how to use) the Scientific Atlanta box and could share their knowledge...

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You probably need a Smart Card to help the box decode the signals.

There was a discussion a few weeks back about where to get the cards.

UBC will not help, they only want to supply all the equipment!!

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This is the old analog converter box used by UBC and it has to be programed by an unlock code addressed to the number of the bottom of the box as to what channels are to be unscrambled. There should also be a remote control to operate it - although there are push buttons on front that can be used. UBC is trying to convert to digital signals (with customer paying the cost) so do not know how long a lifespan these converters will have. All new channels are only available using the smart card type digital system.

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You probably need a Smart Card to help the box decode the signals.

There was a discussion a few weeks back about where to get the cards.

UBC will not help, they only want to supply all the equipment!!

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Thanks all for the valuable input!

As Firefoxx and Lopburi said, my set-top box does not have a smart card reader. But it has a remote control, and push buttons on the front.

I understand that UBC does not support this (old) equipment any longer. So, if this unit needs to be re-programmed by an unlock code to operate, as Lopburi said, I doubt UBC will help.

So, the question is: can I have this box re-programmed somewhere by someone else, or by myself?

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UBC said they won't support it? That's strange, I'm still using the same system at my house, and it's getting the signals fine. I know that they're pushing for a move to digital, but the majority of cable subscribers are still using the old analog equipment. Not many people want to pay the extra baht for very little improvement/content.

Problem with other people doing the reprogramming, even if it's successful, is that it probably won't last very long. If it did, then the set top box should still be working from the last owner's use.

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Firefoxx is right many of us are still using these converters and they were all re programed about a month ago as UBC changed channel numbers. They may not accept new subscribers using this system but if the apartment complex only has the analog wires can not understand the problem - well other than trying to talk with UBC.

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Firefoxx and Lopburi, I think I understand what you mean. Perhaps I should call UBC again, and see if they still stop taking subscribrs with the Scientific box.

Firefoxx, what do you mean by "other people doing the reprogramming"? Isn't it either UBC or the user who does it? Who else could do it and why?

There is something I would like to understand about the 8603 box. How do you actually re-program it, when you have a new code? I can't see any code-entering function on the on-screen menu.

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There is something I would like to understand about the 8603 box. How do you actually re-program it, when you have a new code? I can't see any code-entering function on the on-screen menu.

surely you don't see functions like this :-) but some combination of buttons while turning box on will initiate re-prog mode, and after few hours "googling" things will go the right way...

the problem is - it won't work long enough - say few days only. after - you have to do it again.

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Firefoxx and Lopburi, I think I understand what you mean. Perhaps I should call UBC again, and see if they still stop taking subscribrs with the Scientific box.

Firefoxx, what do you mean by "other people doing the reprogramming"? Isn't it either UBC or the user who does it? Who else could do it and why?

There is something I would like to understand about the 8603 box. How do you actually re-program it, when you have a new code? I can't see any code-entering function on the on-screen menu.

You are not supposed to be the programer - they send a programing code to your unit based on the serial number - on the old units a jumper wire had to be in place to allow this function but the newer box does not have this wire/jack on the outside.

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All right, so, if I get correctly what Lopburi says, the subscriber has no control over this re-programming of the unit with the unlock code. It is all remotely done by UBC.

This seems to contradict what Oleg_Rus said about the subscriber's ability to initiate the re-programming mode. Oleg_Rus, could you elaborate on this, and explain further how you the subscriber can do that?

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Well, no more details from Oleg_Rus...

I am not sure what I can do with this old Scientific Atlanta box. Perhaps nothing... If anyone has a suggestion, please let me know...

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