Remember that getting a fix (via a bin) is one thing, but finding a fix that will LAST is another. All the signs point to the fact that cardless FTA is on its last legs.
The CS plastic solution is expensive but it is likely to offer much better uptime. If you have a CS, then if you can find $250 for a reader and open card, you will probably far more TV than the people spending $180 - $200 on a VS.
hate to tell you but the viewsat and coolshat fix has a better chance than the card solution. charlie can send out an ecm and loop the cards running in their charlie boxes. the rom 102 card in the coolshat is auxed which means it can not be looped. there is no known unlooper for charlie cards.which will make the cards useless until an unlooper is developed.viewsat is $139 delivered on fleabay homer take your $500 bucks you are planning to spend on cards and get your wife a tattoo like this one