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AM-21 questions...

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by bnwrx, Oct 15, 2013.

  1. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Well, Florida is a lot flatter than Colorado so not surprising that you have more trouble receiving more distant channels - mountains tend to block RF very effectively :)
     
  2. mroot

    mroot AllStar

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    I have a question for everyone. I have the AM-21 and it works very nice. I live in the Omaha area and get all of the locals perfectly. However, I am perplexed by one issue.

    I can record the local CBS afflilate (KMTV) and it plays back just fine. However, when I record the local NBC affiliate (WOWT), the recording shows up in my playlist, but as soon as I try to play it back, it pauses for a second and then immediately shows Delete Recording!

    It's almost as if WOWT is not allowing me to record their OTA stuff.

    Does anyone have an answer to this or is there anyone in the Omaha area using the AM-21 and experiencing the same thing?

    Thanks for any replies.

    Mike
     
  3. JosephB

    JosephB Icon

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    Are you able to watch live TV from the station exhibiting this problem? What is the signal strength for that station?
     
  4. mroot

    mroot AllStar

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    Yes. I have great signal strength on all local channels and sub-channels. Watching live is always excellent. No dropouts or pixelization.

    Signal strength shows 85% on one tuner and 100% on the other.

    This is for all channels. NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX and the CW.
     
  5. JosephB

    JosephB Icon

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    Broadcast content cannot be tagged to restrict recording, I don't even know if DirecTV's DVRs look for a CCI bit from an AM21. Whatever is happening, it definitely should not be.
     
  6. mroot

    mroot AllStar

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    Mar 12, 2006
    I checked recording on all of my OTA stations.

    I found the only channel that does this is WOWT's main channel, 6.1. Subchannel 6.2 records just fine.

    I am really confused.
     
  7. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Iowa
    Do you also get that station via satellite? Can you record it that way?
     
  8. mroot

    mroot AllStar

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    Yes, we do. But we want to be able to record this channel when it's raining, so we got the AM-21.
     
  9. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Feb 14, 2013
    Iowa
    Interesting that you can record it then. That station must be setting the ATSC Redistribution Control Descriptor, i.e. the "broadcast flag" for OTA broadcasts. I guess the AM21 recognizes it, but the setting must be lost or ignored for Directv's rebroadcast so you can record it via satellite.

    It might be set in error, since you wouldn't think it would be left on 24x7, unless the station owner really hates DVRs. You could try emailing a technical/engineering contact for the station and see if they can explain. If it is in error maybe they'll turn it off for you. Or maybe the flag isn't trying to prevent you from recording, but is set to a value the AM21 doesn't expect, and it is an AM21 issue. If so, I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for Directv to fix it :)
     
  10. mroot

    mroot AllStar

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    Mar 12, 2006
    Yes, our channel 6 (WOWT) is carried by DTV, as are all of the locals (except subchannels).

    Not knowing what control TV stations may have over that, it seems strange that I can record their subchannel just fine.

    I didn't buy the AM-21 from DTV, not not sure what help they would even give me. I don't think it's a problem with the AM-21, since I can record all the other channels and subchannels in Omaha.

    That is why it is so puzzling.

    I wish there was another Omaha DTV subscriber using the AM-21 that is on this forum.
     
  11. JosephB

    JosephB Icon

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    The broadcast flag can be set per stream or per program, so if it really is a broadcast flag issue, it's not necessarily odd that you can record their subchannels but not the main channel.

    A DirecTV DVR should be able to record even protected content. How is your DVR connected to your TV? HDMI or component? And, are there any devices in the chain, such as HDMI switches or audio receivers?
     
  12. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    Feb 14, 2013
    Iowa
    The problem may be the fact the AM21 connects to the receiver via USB. There are really weird and consumer unfriendly rules around content protection, and it may be that protected content can't be sent unencrypted over a USB link, as that would theoretically allow it to be copied.
     
  13. JosephB

    JosephB Icon

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    I highly doubt that is the case. DirecTV wouldn't build a device that was not fully ATSC compliant. Making the USB interface compliant with whatever is necessary to make it compliant with the broadcast flag would be trivial.
     
  14. slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    I'm not suggesting it is not compliant, I am suggesting that it is and that's why this is happening. Because it sends the digital signal to the receiver via USB, the broadcast flag may disallow that. Since ATSC signals are broadcast unencrypted, therefore one would assume the AM21 sends them to the receiver unencrypted. Though I guess that doesn't explain why it works when he's watching live, and is only a problem when he's recording.

    The root of the problem is the local station setting the flag. I'm not aware of any local stations doing so, or if they do certainly not doing so all the time. It may well be unintentional on their part.
     
  15. nola56

    nola56 New Member

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    Aug 15, 2008
    All but 26-2 that is NOT in the guide or available on the AM-21 since DTV hasn't updated their database.
     
  16. coconut13

    coconut13 Member

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    You can easily get 26.2 ANTENNA TV New Orleans by using a secondary zip. You would have the wrong guide info, but you can pick-up the channel.
     
  17. JosephB

    JosephB Icon

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    My point is, if it worked in the way you suggest, it would be non-compliant. I highly doubt this is what is going on. It's more likely to be a misconfiguration at the broadcaster with the broadcast flag.

    It could also be a problem with their encoder, and watching live the AM21 can handle it, but recorded there are some errors in the bitstream it can't handle. We really need to hear from someone else in his DMA who has an AM21 to see if they have the same problem. It could also be some weird problem with his DVR or AM21.
     
  18. mroot

    mroot AllStar

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    I agree, it would be nice if there was someone in my DMA to confirm this problem.

    I have the satellite receiver going through my Yamaha receiver vis HDMI and then HDMI to my Panny.
     
  19. JosephB

    JosephB Icon

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    Nov 14, 2005
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    I don't think it is an HDMI handshake/HDCP issue, because you'd have trouble watching live TV and you'd have problems on other channels like HBO as well.
     
  20. mroot

    mroot AllStar

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    I received this email from the Chief Engineer at WOWT this morning:

    "The AM-21 is made to work with the DirectTV DVR receiver. WOWT transmits the same as all the local channels. I would call DirectTV and see if they have any ideas. Please keep me informed as your progress."

    I think I will hook the AM-21 to my upstairs DTV DVR and see what the results are.

    Mike
     

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