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My 501 p153 opinion

Discussion in 'General DISH™ Discussion' started by Mark Lamutt, Apr 4, 2002.

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  1. Apr 4, 2002 #1 of 20
    Mark Lamutt

    Mark Lamutt Your Neighborhood Liasion

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    Mar 23, 2002
    Ok, I posted last night that I received the p153 upgrade yesterday and that I would post my observations about it today...so here goes.

    First the really annoying thing about it that will make me want to throw it through the window:

    There is now sound leaked through the 501 to your receiver when using the 30 second skip forward and 10 second skip back buttons watching a pvr event or a time delayed "live" event. That is, pressing either of those buttons to jump forward or back produces a very audible sound. I suspect that it is the audio associated with the current video frame that is displayed when the buttons are pushed, and it is extremely annoying! The software never has had this problem before, and this is something that Dish really needs to fix very quickly!

    That's it for the negatives. Now on to the positives (as I see them):


    The search feature...This is pretty well implemented, considering that there is no way to connect a keyboard to the 501. Press the # key on your remote, and it brings up a screen showing an alpha numeric key pad. The pad isn't laid out like a typewriter (qwerty), but is ABCDEF...and so forth. To "type" in a search term, you can either use the arrow keys to move around the keypad letter by letter, or you can use the number keys on the remote to enter the letters. Pressing 2 cycles through A,B,C,2. If you hold 2 down, it cycles through them very quickly - maybe too quickly. But, it's not a bad way to enter data. You are limited to 15 characters to search for, but those 15 can include spaces as well. It searches all channels, including the ones that don't subscribe to, but at least in the resultant list, those channels are shown in red, indicating that you don't have them subbed. The search is pretty fast, considering that it's searching through 9 days worth of guide data. On my machine, the search took about 20 seconds or so to get all the way through. The results screen is well laid out, listing the results by day, and then by channel. If you press on one of the results, it will either switch to that channel (if the result is currently playing) or it will bring up the pvr timer screen, allowing you to set a timer for the event. There is a history screen that allows you to recall previous searches that you've done, so you don't have to re-enter the same search terms every time. Don't know how many searches are saved. All in all, I think that the search was well implemented.

    There is now a timers button on the pvr information screen that will take you straight to the timers section. I've wanted this for a LONG time - in fact I programmed my pronto to do that for me because I jump to the timers from the pvr screen all the time. Now the 501 does it for me. Very nice.

    Apparently the timer conflict screen has been reworked, but I haven't had a conflicting timer yet, so I won't comment on that.

    Others have been complaining that their HD's are very loud now after the upgrade, and that the channel changes are very slow now. I haven't experienced either of those things with my 501. Channel changing is just as fast as it's always been, and my HD is still nice and quiet.

    The Disk Drive option is now gone from the menu. I guess that means that Dish never intends to let us upgrade the drive size in our 501s... :(

    I don't subscribe to caller id, so I can't comment on its functionality.

    I didn't lose any recordings with the upgrade. Others have reported that there is a bug if you press cancel to make the little blinking timer icon disappear, especially if you have a back to back recording set up. I did exactly that last night, and it caused no problems for me (but then again, pressing cancel to get rid of the blinky clock never has caused me any trouble).

    Except for the audio now leaking through using the pvr skip functions, this upgrade seems to be a stable one that adds significant functional improvements to the 501.
     
  2. Apr 4, 2002 #2 of 20
    llunken777

    llunken777 AllStar

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    Mar 24, 2002
    I got the upgrade yesterday and have no sounds at all like you described when skipping forward or backward. Are you running your video and audio out through the RF or through the SVHS and RCA audio outputs? The Search history editing on mine doesn't allow for correcting or clearing of individual histories. Does yours?
     
  3. Apr 4, 2002 #3 of 20
    Mark Lamutt

    Mark Lamutt Your Neighborhood Liasion

    12,527
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    Mar 23, 2002
    I run svideo out and both toslink and rca audio out. The sound I was describing was happening on the toslink audio out. I didn't check the rca audio - I'll do that tonight. I'll also look at the history clearing and report back.
     
  4. Apr 4, 2002 #4 of 20
    Tony S

    Tony S AllStar

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    Mar 28, 2002
    I have had the new software for about a week and I haven't had any problem at all with the audio when using the skip buttons. I am using the S video with RCA audio outputs on the receiver.
     
  5. Apr 4, 2002 #5 of 20
    10056753

    10056753 Cool Member

    19
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    Apr 3, 2002
    ditto to tony. no sound problems on mine using svideo and rca audio. another note on the search is that it searches through the title AND the information section of the program. i was looking for the next CART race and i got about 50 programs with CART somewhere in the title or info. maybe if i put a "space" before and after CART it will narrow down the finds. my only two complaints...1) would be nice to exclude unsubscribed channels from the search. probably a marketing gimmick to make sure you see just how MUCH you are missing by not subscribing to other channels. 2) can't pause when the caller id comes up. first time it came up, this was the button i automatically tried to hit so i could then answer the phone. i guess i just have to learn to do "select, pause". not a big deal.

    my hard disk sound is no different and channel selection is the same speed as before. i would like to know for sure if we can no longer upgrade the harddrive with 153. i was considering this rather than buying the 721.
     
  6. Apr 4, 2002 #6 of 20
    Mark Lamutt

    Mark Lamutt Your Neighborhood Liasion

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    Mar 23, 2002
    We've never been able to upgrade the hard drive - during one of the tech chats last year, they said that it might be a possiblility that they would implement, but it looks like it won't happen now, with the menu option gone now. BTW, they had to get rid of it to make room for the Dish Home interactive crap that is already plaguing my 4900, and will soon infest my 501.
     
  7. Apr 4, 2002 #7 of 20
    10056753

    10056753 Cool Member

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    Apr 3, 2002
    bummer. 30 hours seemed like sooooo much time...until my kids figured out how to record scooby doo and pokemon.

    chi
     
  8. Apr 5, 2002 #8 of 20
    salsas

    salsas New Member

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    Apr 5, 2002
    I love the PVR 501. I must have bought it just at the right time because I bought it 4 days ago, and the 153 software had just barely been released. The software downloaded to my PVR the first night I had it. I have the S-Video link and RCA a/v that work great. I can't believe the picture quality after recording. It's excellent; just like watching live tv. I don't have any funky sounds when using the 30 second forward/10 second back buttons. The caller-ID works great. The search feature is nice; although, I would like it if the unsubscribed channels findings were not listed in the search results. It would be nice if the PVR could recognize to record a show no matter what time or day it's on. Slow motion is something that maybe Dish could implement. All in all, they have done a great job with the PVR 501, and I'm sure more software improvements will be on their way. The 35 hrs. of storage is sufficient for my needs. The best part is that there is not a subscription fee to use the PVR 501.
     
  9. Apr 5, 2002 #9 of 20
    Mark Lamutt

    Mark Lamutt Your Neighborhood Liasion

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    Mar 23, 2002
    Welcome to our little place in the world here, Salsas! :hi:

    I agree with you about the 501 - I got mine when they were first released, and I've been about 99% pleased with it since then. Slow motion would be nice, and I think that it's doable - the screenshots I've seen of the 721 indicate that it may have the slo-mo options, so it may be possible that the 501 will get them at some point.
     
  10. Mark Lamutt

    Mark Lamutt Your Neighborhood Liasion

    12,527
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    Mar 23, 2002
    I finally got around to doing some more testing about the annoying bug that I listed in my first post in this thread - that the audio leaks through when using the pvr skip functions. It only is a problem using the toslink output on the 501 - rca audio out is still silent as always. This is very strange, as none of the audio code should have been touched to release this upgrade. Dish, are you reading this?
     
  11. Craig Fogus

    Craig Fogus AllStar

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    Mar 24, 2002
    That's strange! I only have a Toslink audio output (no RCA) and Svideo, and I do not notice any sounds like you describe. I do notice a lag now when I skip ahead or back it takes a couple seconds for the audio to kick back in. Maybe it is your AV receiver? I have a JVC RX-1028. FWIW
     
  12. DishDude1

    DishDude1 Godfather

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    Apr 12, 2002
    I don't hear anything through my toslink when searching.
     
  13. Mark Lamutt

    Mark Lamutt Your Neighborhood Liasion

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    Mar 23, 2002
    DishDude1 -

    Welcome to DBSTalk!

    What kind of receiver do you hook your 501 to? I'm wired through a H/K AVR110, and still have the audio problem. I'm getting used to it, but it's pretty annoying.
     
  14. EvanS

    EvanS Legend/Supporter

    262
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    Mar 27, 2002
    Mark,
    I connect my 501 to a JVC 8000, both TOS and RCA...no audio problems at all.
    Does your HK "auto sense" the audio for the DBS input or do you have it hard-coded to use only TOS OR analog? I have heard of this "feature" and have also heard that most people do not use it due top various scan-type issues
    Evan
     
  15. Neil Derryberry

    Neil Derryberry Hall Of Fame

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    Mar 23, 2002
    My 501 is hooked to my Sony str-de835 via toslink, and I don't have this issue...
     
  16. Mark Lamutt

    Mark Lamutt Your Neighborhood Liasion

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    Mar 23, 2002
    Evan,
    I connect my 501 via svideo and toslink directly to my receiver, and via composite video and rca to my vcr, and then from the vcr to the receiver. So I have the option of switching between audio inputs on the H/K depending on what I'm doing with the vcr and what I'm watching on the 501. When I switch the audio input on the H/K to optical 2 (what I have the 501 toslink connected to), the receiver automatically jumps into DD mode - either 5.1 or 2.0 depending on the program source.
     
  17. DarrellP

    DarrellP Hall Of Fame

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    Apr 24, 2002
    Mark, I just RMA'd my first 501 and it did NOT have the audio sound you describe when coming off of Pause or Skip. But the replacement unit does. It only occurs on the analog audio feeds and not the Digital.

    The way I discovered it was while watching just the TV sound and not my HT. The analog sound goes through my TV and the Digital goes through my HT receiver.

    Due to that reason plus the timers screwing up all the time and the hard drive registering 60db on my sound meter, Dish is replacing it with another one.
     
  18. brmann

    brmann Legend

    107
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    Apr 22, 2002
    I run svideo out and both toslink and rca audio out. The sound I was describing was happening on the toslink audio out. I didn't check the rca audio - I'll do that tonight. I'll also look at the history clearing and report back.
    _________________
    Mark Lamutt
    Administrator

    Mark, I realize this may be a very basic question but what
    exactly are you referring to when you reference tslink? I know s-video and rca and rf (or coax) but don't know what toslink is.

    Thanks

    Burt
     
  19. Mark Lamutt

    Mark Lamutt Your Neighborhood Liasion

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    Mar 23, 2002
    Burt,

    Toslink is digital optical audio. It's one of the options to get digital audio out of a device, with the other being digital coax.
     
  20. djrobinn

    djrobinn New Member

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    Nov 22, 2003
    Salsas & Mark, you guys will be happy to know that the slow-motion feature has been in place for a while now. Just press the Pause button and the skip backward or skip forward buttons to advance or reverse frames in slow-mo...

    Robin
     
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