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A digital cable TV activation system from the OpenCable project of the CableLabs research consortium ( Introduced in 2003 and sometimes called "Plug and Play TV," the CableCARD contains the customer's account information as well as the channel assignments and decryption algorithms used by the cable provider. The CableCARD is housed in a Type II PC Card module, and as of mid-2007, all new set-top boxes in the U.S. support CableCARDs.

No Set-top Box and More Accuracy
When a set-top box is used, depending on the type of box, TV set, connection and digital format, unnecessary video processing may take place in the chain from set-top box to TV. However, a CableCARD can be plugged directly into "Digital Cable Ready" TVs, DVRs, media servers and PCs, thus eliminating the set-top box and ensuring the most accurate decoding and scaling (see upconvert).

S-CARDs, M-CARDs and tru2way
A Single-Stream CableCARD (S-CARD) provides one tuner for viewing one channel, while the latest Multi-Stream CableCARD (M-CARD) supports up to six tuners for simultaneous watching, recording and picture-in-picture (PIP). Two-way interaction was added with CableCARD 2.0 for video-on-demand, and a "tru2way" logo certifies that the TV is a two-way CableCARD device. See DVR and set-top box.

Plugging In a CableCARD
This Panasonic TV is CableCARD ready, and the card need only be inserted into the slot. (Image courtesy of Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company.)
References in periodicals archive ?
The Tuning Adapter is intended to work on any Unidirectional Digital Cable Ready Product (UDCP) that has a USB connector and necessary firmware.
Sharp introduced a 65-inch Digital Cable Ready AQUOS at CES, which it claims is the industry's largest LCD HDTV.
CableLabs[R] today announced that, along with TiVo, Motorola, Scientific-Atlanta, BigBand Networks and C-COR, it has developed a new solution that extends the functionality of certain Unidirectional Digital Cable Ready Products (UDCPs) that use CableCARDs[TM] to access switched digital services previously unavailable to such devices.
5 /PRNewswire/ -- LG Electronics today introduced 20 liquid crystal display (LCD) television models -- led by three large-screen Digital Cable Ready HDTVs with built-in 160-gigabyte high-definition digital video recorders (DVRs).
commends the Federal Communications Commission for its recent actions to allow consumers continued access to cable programming through Digital Cable Ready (DCR) televisions.
Slated for the first-quarter 2006, both units incorporate XD Engine and HDMI inputs and are Digital Cable Ready -- allowing for digital cable reception, including HD programming, without the need for an external cable box.
Cox Provides High-Definition Digital Cable Services on Samsung Interactive Digital Cable Ready (iDCR) OCAP-Based HDTV
The new Digital Cable Ready plasma HDTVs can store up to 14 hours of digital high-definition programming or 62 hours of digital standard-definition programming.
The LG 71SA1D is a digital cable ready model that eliminates the need for a separate set-top box to receive high-definition and premium digital cable programming.
They are Digital Cable Ready (DCR) and include a CableCARD(TM) slot for standard and high definition broadcasts.
Stunning 71-inch Digital Cable Ready Model Introduced for Custom Installers
All DLP(TM) Cinema Series models are Digital Cable Ready with a CableCARD(TM) slot.