It was a process. Not the normal one, for which I recognize that (a) I knew what I was doing and (b) we set up a non-standard system. But, even with me sidelined so I couldn't get in there and mess with my cables, it actually took less than an hour to re-rig the living room and kitchen.
So... there was nothing for it but to dive in.
The living set up is in a Pine Factory crate-type cube with at least one board pulled off in back for cables. TV on top and three shelves with various devices in various stages of usefulness.
-- Pull VCR. Disconnect coax output cable -- all F-type connectors -- and fish out a three-way splitter. Disconnect coax input cable from the outside world, removing a spliced in extension cable, and connect to single input side of splitter. Disconnect coax between TV and splitter.
-- Disconnect HDMI-to-micro-HDMI cable for Kindle Fire HD viewing from HDMI2 input -- and set aside. Connect new HDMI-to-HDMI to HDMI2 input. HDMI1 is used for the WiFi Blu-Ray player.
-- Find a free socket in the power strip attached to the back of the cube, connect power supply to cable box. Connect new coax from output of splitter to input of cable box. Plug in HDMI cable.
-- Lights come on cable box. Turn on TV. Still dark, of course.
-- The cable box says Pace, but the paperwork for them mentions Motorola. The Sony website for the RM-V310 7-component remotes says the code number for a Motorola cable box is 015. Press and hold SET, hold and release POWER, release SET. 015. OK. Now we resume using our remotes until weirdness strikes, at least on the Sony TV.
-- The kitchen TV is a GPX compact portable TV/DVD. Alas, GPX isn't in either remotes' database. And the original GPX remote stopped working or the IR sensor did. We might be able to scroll through all the possibilities on the cable remote, but not today.
-- But the kitchen installation was easy. Unscrew the coax and move to cable box input. Run new coax from output of cable box to little TV. Plug into little power strip behind the old compact microwave -- which mainly gets used as a pie keeper, but still works if we need two waves at once. Lights come on. Turn little TV on.
-- Ooh, we don't have to call in to activate the damming boxes, but there's a webpage. No dealing with customer disservice! Fire up the Kindle Fire HD! Turn on all the components. Set Sony to HDMI2, obviously, and the little TV? Set to 3 or 4, the usual VCR channels -- found that in small print on page 27 of the quick install guide, in a Troubleshooting page after pages about all kinds of crap we'd never use.
-- Fire up Kindle Fire HD Silk browser. Enter phone and ZIP. It has the two serial numbers. First command sent. Supposed to turn the boxes off. It's not instantaneous, but involves sequencing all the LEDs for several minutes. Wait a minute. Turn cable boxes back on. Second command sent. Activated. Wait at least ten minutes for the guide pages to partially load.
-- Set TV to Channel 3, get CBS in old format, as expected. 3.1 doesn't work. Of course it doesn't. It's only the HD channel's name. No, we need to input the perfectly logical mapping of 3.1 to, uh, looks up... Channel 782. And yes, if one wanted to watch 3.2, you'd go DOWN to 781. What kind of idiot comes up with such a ludicrous system? Oh yeah, a cable company. I hate cable companies. Those of you laughing your asses off, because you did this conversion ten, fifteen years ago... Yeah, you've been putting up with three- and four-digit codes for ten, fifteen years. And the cable companies STILL haven't come up with a more logical arrangement.
-- Living room works. Kitchen works. And look, with both TVs using the same setup, the timing difference in audio is acceptable. Using their own digital tuners, the two audios were never in sync.
-- And we're back in business.
-- Later, we'll clean up the cables. And maybe I'll take the coax from splitter to the quilt room analog TV and try to hook it up to the coax output directly, rather than get a third box. Sort of how we had the TVs set up in Laurium. Might need the HDTV converter box from downstairs that never worked well with the HD antenna. But, this is not that day.
Anyway, I got my late-night Deadliest Catch on right now and at midnight will switch to Le Tour De France. Thank goodness yesterday was a rest day! (grin)