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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 ?
July 1 marks the start of the Federal Communication Commission's requirement for 36-inch-plus screen televisions to have built-in off-air DTV tuners and for cable operators to make cablecards available to all of their subscribers.
End Customers Can Now Add Digital Cable Tuners With CableCARD to Their PCs
Obviously, TV tuners themselves are nothing new, but this product allows the easy addition of two, four or six CableCARD tuners to our Life|media servers.
The cable industry is working with TiVo to ensure that installation of CableCARDs and the adapter will be easy and seamless for the consumer.
The unit is available with CableCARD for US operators and with embedded CA for Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean.
30 /PRNewswire/ -- S1Digital is pleased to announce the immediate availability of Digital Cable Tuners with their Media Center solutions, enabling customers to watch and record premium high-definition TV (HDTV) via CableCARD, without the need for a cable set top box.
The company will showcase a number of advanced technology solutions including High Definition (HD) interactive STBs and digital video recorders (DVRs) based on OCAP and CableCARD designed specifically for US cable operators.
NEW YORK, April 25 /PRNewswire/ -- S1Digital, a leading builder of high- end Media Centers announced today they will be introducing CableCARD (OCUR) enabled Media Centers and Servers in early May.
The rules require cable companies to provide customers who lease set top boxes from their cable provider, and those who choose competitive equipment available at retail, with the same security module, called a CableCARD.
Viewed as a major milestone in cable's interactive digital evolution, this LG plasma HDTV has achieved Certification status as OCAP(TM)-enabled interactive digital television set, including the multi-stream CableCARD (M-Card) system, from a recently concluded certification by CableLabs(R).
In addition, Pace will feature removable security versions of its successfully deployed Tahoe HD DVR and Vegas SD DVR with CableCARD[TM] interfaces, as well as its newest CableCARD interface set-top box, the Miami HD.