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My Black Screen Problem - HR20 Diary

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by markman07, Oct 9, 2007.

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  1. Oct 9, 2007 #1 of 17
    markman07

    markman07 Godfather

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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    Aquired HR20-100 last summer to join my HR10-250 (Directivo) connected to my main HD TV. Both connected to OTA.

    1. HR20-100 worked pretty good.

    - Had a few lock-ups when messing with Photos and Music but otherwise good until its final week.

    - A few weeks ago (Late Sept) while watching TV screen would go black and sound would go quiet. The GUI worked. Changing channels/ using trick play / fast forward worked for the first couple of days this happened. Happened again about three days later on a Sunday while trying to watch football. Gui worked but no picture / no sound. Nothing again worked. Did all the troubleshooting (reset via gui, red button reboot, unplug). Was occurring more and more. Started getting access card error messages. Eventually no less than a week after the initial symptoms the system no longer read any access card. Called Directv.

    2. HR20-700 (refurb) is sent to replace broken HR20-100. Arrives on a Friday.

    -Join the Cutters Edge and download latest firmware. VOD (DOD) included!. All seems to be just fine throughout weekend. Play around with VOD and Streaming pictures and music. Watch a few shows and use heavily on Sunday while watching football. Things looking good!
    - Monday (Oct 8) come home and turn TV on. HR20-100 stuck on picture with sound. Gui not responsive via remote or front panel. Have to RBR. Works fine through remainder of the day
    - Tuesday (Oct 9) come home and turn tv on. Image stuck again. No sound. GUI works fine. Choosing shows from My Play List it just asks me if I want to delete. When attempting to go to any channel I just get Black. Nothing appears to work. Reboot via Gui.

    The last couple of weeks seem to be causing me concern HR20. The HR10 has no problems to report. Still working fine. Hopefully things get better soon.
     
  2. Oct 9, 2007 #2 of 17
    jeffshoaf

    jeffshoaf Icon

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    Jun 17, 2006
    Is your HR20 powered through a UPS and/or power conditioner?
     
  3. Oct 9, 2007 #3 of 17
    dshu82

    dshu82 Icon

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    Jul 6, 2007
    Sounds exactly like the brand new one I put in on Saturday. Installed UPS last night, still no good. Freezing, black screen, sometimes sound or not. I have to call tonight when I have enough time to deal with CSR.
     
  4. Oct 9, 2007 #4 of 17
    markman07

    markman07 Godfather

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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    I have never had a UPS for any of my electronics. I do use those 6 prong power strips that have small protection but nothing like a big UPS. I have had numerous Directivos since they first came out, computers, tvs, HD TV, Stereo/receiver, etc and in 20+ years never had an issues due to power issues. Living in Minnesota things have always been fine. Of course it would be safer to have one and when some huge powerful storms are coming I sometimes will unplug things to protect myself.
     
  5. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    Well after a good 10 days of no problems, I came home today and when I turned on my TV I noticed the screen was stuck and no sound. The Gui and Menu's worked. I changed channels and all black. No matter what all black on all channels. I tried to check my transponder readings and then the system stuck on the background screen and never went any further. Had to Red Button Reboot.

    HR10-250 - no problems to report.

    Using the latest HR20-700 beta firmware (released 10/12/2007)
    ----------------
    10/22/2007 - Using the latest firmware downloaded Saturday night things seemed fine throughout the weekend. Used a lot including during Sunday (NFL ticket). I came home during lunch. Turned the TV on and the image was frozen with no sound. I could change channels but only got black. I would try to play something and it would ask me right away if I wanted to delete. Again it required a red button reboot. This is getting old. First my HR20-100 had issues and now it's replacement is having issues.
     
  6. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

    389
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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    This is getting old! Two days ago my wife reports that everything is black and the shows all ask you if you want to delete them.

    Today again turn on the TV. Screen is froze with no audio. The gui works. I can navigate to any channel (local, SD, HD) but just black with channel banner. I go into the Settings and do a test..everything passes! WHAT GIVES!~?

    Why all the black screens? I am starting to think this is the same thing that maybe happened to my HR20-100. Back then I actually removed the access card thinking that might be the cause. It seemed to have permanently broke that unit and is why I ended up getting a new (refurb actually) HR-100 to replace it.

    I have never had any issues with any of my other 4 Directv tivos. My HR10-250 is right next to this one sharing the tv and it never has any problems. I am getting very frustrated.
     
  7. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    Dear Diary -

    Last night was the first time I recall, since I have owned an HR20-100, to have the black screen issue during primetime.

    My replacement HR20-700 had the issue last night while recording Boston Legal. I was switched over using the HR10-250 and around 9:30 CDT I switched over to the HR20 (both connected to same TV). The channel was black. Every channel was black. Gui worked.

    I decided this time to leave it over night to see if it fixed itself. I pushed the power button on the unit.

    Today I checked. Same thing. Banner still showed Boston Legal as the active program.

    A few things I noticed. The Favorite lists I had renamed were now named to their defaults (custom1, custom2).

    I did a test via the setup menu. Both SAT tuners failed and both OTA failed. I said it was connected to the network but not the internet.

    Odd issues. Again I had to reboot. (used the GUI to restart). After the reboot I checked to see if Boston Legal still recorded. No. Not even in the Play List. History says it was Cancelled.

    RECAP SO FAR -

    Oct 8, 9 , 19, 22, 24, 30

    --------------
    Other DVR's in HOME

    HR10-250 No odd problems
    Series 2 R 10- No odd problems
    Series 2 Hughes - No odd problems.

    I haven't even sent my HR20-700 back yet (another story) and this one is having the same issues.

    -------------
     
  8. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

    389
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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    The HR20-700 (my first ever HR20 unit) had the black screen issue at first and then the card reader stopped working. The HR20 is having these same issues but I dare not touch the card reader this time. I have gathered enough information where I guess I am ready to call Directv again soon. I just don't have hours to spend on the phone doing basic troubleshooting.

    What could be the cause of such an odd issue? I did get the new 5LNB dish when they installed my first HR20. I also got a new multiswitch at that time. Solve this problem and you will be my hero.
     
  9. Nov 4, 2007 #9 of 17
    markman07

    markman07 Godfather

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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    Watching the Colts - Patriots via NFL TICKET HD channel. I leave the room for a few minutes. Come back. Audio going but image frozen. Channel up one channel to see if that would fix it. The box reboots!

    Recap -
    RECAP SO FAR -

    Oct 8, 9 , 19, 22, 24, 30
    Nov 4 (rebooted)
     
  10. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

    389
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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    Navigating through channels and boom ..box reboots. Here on the counter I have my broken HR20-100 that is going back tomorrow. I was hoping this HR20-700 (the replacment) would get better over this month and a half but it is only getting worse it appears!!!

    Latest -
    Recap -
    RECAP SO FAR -

    Oct 8, 9 , 19, 22, 24, 30
    Nov 4 (rebooted)
    Nov 6 (rebooted)
    Nov 12 (had to reboot)
    Nov 13 (had to reboot), once rebooted on its own (after channel channels trying to get myself out of a black screen instance)
    Nov 14 (black screen...had to reboot via Gui)
    Nov 15 (sameas Nov 12-13-14)
    Nov 16 (same )
    NOV 17 (same)
    Nov 19 (same)
    FUnny thing is I can tell right away by looking at the top right where it lists your currently selected Favorities list. Instead of showing the name I chose it shows the default name (custom 1).
     
  11. Bista-Buster

    Bista-Buster Legend

    117
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    Apr 15, 2006
    Why don't you try taking your TiVo and hook it up to the Satellite antenna cables that are currently hooked up to the HR20 receiver.


    Do a swap and see if the problem follows. It might be a multiswitch going out on you.
     
  12. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

    389
    0
    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    I have 4 cables coming from the Multiswitch going into the living room. 2 into the HR10 and 2 going into the HR20. The other 4 cables from the MS go to two other Directivos (one in basement / one in br). I have not had ONE issue with any of the tivo based units. I am therefore thinking it isn't the multiswitch. Then again I am no multiswitch expert so maybe something is going on. Who knows.


    I did switch the two cables coming into the HR20 and the two coming into the HR10. After two days the issue has occurred again.
     
  13. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

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    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    I don't expect anyone to read my original thread on the black screen issues I have had with my HR20. First the HR20-100 and its replacement HR20-700.

    http://www.dbstalk.com/showthread.php?t=103912 full details.

    But I have noticed something that tells me right off the bat that I am going to have to reboot.

    As you know when you see the channel banner it also shows the name of your currently selected favorites list. If I turn on the TV and it shows the Default Fav Name: custom 1 instead of the name I setup for the currently selected favorite., I know I am going to have to end up rebooting. When I see this I know that if I turn to any channel it will be black. If I try to play something from the playlist it will ask me if I want to delete it. The gui works fine and I reboot using the menu. A few times changing channels when in this black channel state it will reboot the unit but only a small percentage of the time has this happened.

    So please offer any help if you can, trying to pinpoint the cause - if this was a multiswitch issue or hardware issue with the unit itself why is the name of my favorites list being changed to the default name? Does this seem more like a software issue than a hardware issue? Would a hardware issue cause this name change?

    NOTE: I have three other units connected (HR10-250, HR10, Hughes Series 2). None of this units have had ANY issues during this same time period.
     
  14. RoberMR

    RoberMR AllStar

    70
    0
    Oct 23, 2007
    Markman, sorry to hear you're having so much trouble with your unit(s). This is a shot in the dark, and you've probably tried this already, but I thought I should mention it anyway ...

    Have you checked the internal temp of the unit? Sometimes, even if it says it it "normal" it may be too high for the unit and one of the components may be flaking out. Do you have the luxury (spacewise) to point a small electric fan at where the unit is? This way you can have the temp come down and stay down for an extended period. If this eliminates the problem, then you could come to the conclusion that it is a hardware issue that's causing the unit to malfuntion. I have owned ReplayTVs, various DirecTivos and now the HR20-100 and cooling down the unit acting up usually solved these kinds of issues.

    I hope this helps.
     
  15. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

    389
    0
    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    Thanks for your suggestions. The more help I can get the merrier!

    I can try that. I am willing to try anything. It appears to happen almost once a day if not sometimes a few. The receiver is sitting by itself on the top of my components cabinet. (wide open). I checked and it says the temp is 122. Is this normal? Of course if I try to check the temp when things are going nuts it says some outrageous temp like 30!

    I don't have the protection plan yet the replacement is no more than 6 weeks old so I think i am still covered. Yet I am afraid to call for another replacement when I have to worry not getting an HR20 (I need/want ota).

    Just odd this weird thing has happened twice with my first HR20-100 and now this.
     
  16. RoberMR

    RoberMR AllStar

    70
    0
    Oct 23, 2007
    In my experience 122 is pretty high even though according to the manual and the software it may be "normal". There may be a component in there worth $.16 that may be a little bit marginal and can raise havoc with the system. And of course, the software in these boxes don't have enough defensive code to act gracefully when something like that happens. I just checked the temp on my HR20-100 and it says 100 degrees. I do have a fan that blows the warm air that comes out the back away from the machine. I also have 4 1/2 inch rubber blocks under each of the little feet under the machine to raise it a bit and allow more air to circulate around it. We keep the house at about 68F degrees in the winter and no warmer than 75F in the summer. The case is barely warm to the touch. This is that way I like to keep them.

    Anyway, you may want to give some of these things a try and se if it helps.

    Good Luck.
     
  17. markman07

    markman07 Godfather

    389
    0
    Dec 22, 2005
    Minnesota
    Well I made a change and haven't had any more lock-ups since last Friday. This is the first time where I have gone more than one or two days without a lockup. I turned off the Native Resolution feature. I also removed 480i and 480p. So maybe now I have just jinxed posting this but then again I am hoping it continues to not lock up anymore.
     
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