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ViP HD DVR Audio related Issues - (Post your current audio related issues Here)


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259 replies to this topic

#126 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 01:53 PM

Just to make it clear what we see in our household (which gets no OTA and its locals from San Francisco), at this time the audio dropouts are as follows:

NBC and CBS: 2 to 4 per 1 hour show; instantaneous and mostly not disruptive to the Dolby on my A/V tuner; sometimes repeatable and sometimes not; same on my 722 and 612.

ABC and Fox: about the same as NBC and CBS on my 612 (which has no updated software) but far fewer on my 722 and limited to transitions and commercials; the totally disruptive dropouts on my 722 were eliminated with the software update.

Cable and Premium Channels: very infrequent, but they do happen and the effects are the same as NBC and CBS though mostly not repeatable.

These results are based on experiences over a long period of time during which my 722 was swapped out by Echostar Engineering to help with solving the ABC and Fox problem.

I do have to pay attention now or I miss many dropouts; in fact it has gotten to the point that I miss some my wife hears. If we weren't so involved with the problem, I doubt we would notice most of the dropouts except on NBC and CBS.

This problem was in no way related to anything other than the way Dish processes the data stream between the time they get it from the channel and the time it appears on my A/V system out of the Dish box. I say that with conviction because the problem was originally reported by customers with 622's and 722's after a major software update. I say that because the reports came from certain DMA's around the country; for example, in California the problem is in the San Francisco and Sacramento DMA's but has not been reported in Los Angeles.

I'm now getting a new problem with locals (particularly on ABC and Fox on my 722) where the audio will start to "burble" (like it's under water) then go silent sometimes with a video freeze. It's happening more and more, such as during the Oscars Best Picture review of the the nominees.

I'd say the new problem might be a developing problem with my 722, but something similar occurs on the 612, a problem which has been reported for a long time now. My gut tells me it's happening when I'm recording two HD streams while watching a recording and skipping through the commercials. I have experimented with the 612 and see the frequency of this problem fall off when I don't watch anything from it when it is recording.

Heat is not a problem. Signal strength is no longer a problem for some of the HD cable channels now that Ciel 2 is up.

:rant:
As you might guess, I'm not happy that Echostar has moved on to marketing Sling when it has not expended sufficient resources to produce reliably clean A/V signals through the existing ViP DVR's. For me, acceptable noticeable A/V signal loss tolerances aren't what I'm getting. My guess is that we wouldn't see these problems if Charlie had simply settled with TiVo instead of straining the processing capabilities of the hardware. My guess is that had the Fox and ABC problem been in LA and NYC every engineer working for Dish would have been moved to a special lab in one of those DMA's until it was fixed.

I certainly hope moman19 can drive by some lab in St. Louis and wave to a team of frustrated Echostar engineers who otherwise couldn't see or solve the problem sitting in the Rockies.

Sorry, Ron, but I needed to rant.
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#127 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 03:40 PM

.......There could also be a difference between 622 and 722. I have a 722 so I that could be a factor here.


There is ABSOLUTELY a difference between the 722 and the 622. I believe each uses a different Broadcom MPEG decoder.

While both my 622 and 722 suffered similar audio dropouts with earlier software releases, The 622 is completely cured while the 722 still has horrible and constant dropouts. I'm talking maybe 100+ drops per hour. Both are on L6.17. I think the 622 issues vanished with L6.16.
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#128 OFFLINE   Dr. Cool

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:34 PM

Couple of follow up questions. Is it limited to the programs you mentioned or are you seeing this across all content you are watching. Of the content you are watching what is the frequency you are seeing it (2 times an hour? 20 times an hour?). Does it happen 100% of the times. Is there one particular show it happens a lot on. I would like to see if it happens in my configuration.

There could also be a difference between 622 and 722. I have a 722 so I that could be a factor here.


Yes, I'd also bet that the 622 and the 722 behave differently under different FW versions, assuming that they really have different AV processors.
My audio dropouts however are pretty consistent, here is what I could gather up to now:
(1) My wife's lineup is almost entirely made of HD channels and she *loves* to zap. When she is zapping, we *never* hear audio dropouts, no matter if it's OTA or Sat channels. So I can discard dropouts with live programming with almost 100% of certainty.
(2) Even when she's not zapping, if it's live there's never a dropout, at least with the shows she watches, like some on Food Channel (Emeril, etc.), HGTV, TLC (Jon and Kate plus 8, Seventeen and Counting). She always watches them live, and there was never a dropout.
(3) When we record, or there's absolutely no dropout (A&E "The Sopranos") or there are always dropouts, depending naturally on the FW version, such as more recently with HDNet "Enterprise." I don't record many series in HD however (most of the series that I watch I record in SD).
(4) Movies in HD or don't present any dropout or have always and consistently the same dropout pattern. It appears to me that the higher the quality of image, the higher the chance of dropouts, but there's no way to really know. B&W movies also have dropouts. Most of the movies that I watch come from HDNet Movies, MGM Movies and Universal, and it appears to me that all of them can be affected.
(5) The frequency of dropouts is very consistent across sources. No matter if it's an OTA show or a Dish movie, if there's a dropout, there'll be more to follow, and frequency, I would guess, is about one every 10 minutes. They are very short, but long enough to make the amplifier panel "blink" (as in a stream loss) and to make a word in a dialogue incomprehensible.
(6) *VIDEO IS ALWAYS PERFECT*. I find it amazing that only audio is screwed up, video processing should be much harder to get right, and yet it has never been affected.
(7) Since one of the latest FW upgrades I started to also have the "burble" or "metallic robot" sound that phrelin and others are talking about. It's less common than the audio dropouts, but for sure I never noticed them before. It's a pretty bizarre sound, I'd have noticed if it had been there before.
(8) I've never had audio dropouts with the defunct *ZOOM* channels, and I watched them a lot. Picture & sound of those channels were glorious relative to mainstream consumer standards. I was clearly a happier costumer then...

I always wondered if the hard drive isn't the culprit, but then, how is it possible that video is not affected???

Edited by Dr. Cool, 24 February 2009 - 05:40 PM.


#129 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:46 PM

Dr, Cool -- I'm sorry to say that your issue is far different from mine because in my case (and others in St. Louis) it is almost exclusively limited to the local HD channels. I don't see (hear) this at all on the channels you mention. This dovetails with Ron's explanation. I don't doubt that you're having some real issues, but they are most likely not related to what's going on down here and in a few other locations. I base this on the fact that I have not seen any similar reports from others in your location. But who knows????? It may be time to swap receivers and see what happens. Have you tried?

Phrelin and I used to have similar reports. But now he's getting issues on channel/receivers that work fine for me and Vice Versa. This illustrates how the issue varies from place to place and box to box.

Edited by moman19, 24 February 2009 - 05:52 PM.

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#130 OFFLINE   Dr. Cool

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:53 PM

Dr, Cool -- I'm sorry to say that your issue is far different from mine because in my case (and others in St. Louis) it is almost exclusively limited to the local HD channels. I don't see (hear) this at all on the channels you mention. This dovetails with Ron's explanation. I don't doubt that you're having some real issues, but they are most likely not related to what's going on down here and in a few other locations. I base this on the fact that I have not seen any similar reports from others in your location. But who knows????? It may be time to swap receivers and see what happens. Have you tried?

Phrelin and I used to have similar reports. But now he's getting issues on channel/receivers that work fine for me and Vice Versa. This illustrates how the issue varies from place to place and box to box.


Yes, I'm starting to consider doing it, if only to discard the possibility of hardware failure.

#131 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:53 PM

....I certainly hope moman19 can drive by some lab in St. Louis and wave to a team of frustrated Echostar engineers who otherwise couldn't see or solve the problem sitting in the Rockies......


Huh? I would grab them by the shorts if I could, but I know of no E* engineers in this part of the world.;)

So moving to Ciel 2 made no difference? That's bad. The St. Louis locals are currently on the 118 sat but are also supposed to move to Ciel 2. I was hoping the move might somehow magically resolve the issue.
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#132 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:57 PM

Yes, I'm starting to consider doing it, if only to discard the possibility of hardware failure.


Go for it. At worse, it eliminates a big variable. At best, your problem goes Bye, bye.
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#133 OFFLINE   Dr. Cool

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 05:58 PM

Dr, Cool -- I'm sorry to say that your issue is far different from mine because in my case (and others in St. Louis) it is almost exclusively limited to the local HD channels. I don't see (hear) this at all on the channels you mention. This dovetails with Ron's explanation. I don't doubt that you're having some real issues, but they are most likely not related to what's going on down here and in a few other locations. I base this on the fact that I have not seen any similar reports from others in your location. But who knows????? It may be time to swap receivers and see what happens. Have you tried?

Phrelin and I used to have similar reports. But now he's getting issues on channel/receivers that work fine for me and Vice Versa. This illustrates how the issue varies from place to place and box to box.


Although... Do you watch lots of *recorded* stuff from HDNet, MGM and Universal? Because one thing I can tell you: almost all dropouts that I have or come from these three Sat channels or come from OTA channels.

If you don't watch recorded shows from HDNET, MGM and Universal, then it could perfectly be that the problems that you have in the end are only different from mine due to differences in OTA streams.

Edited by Dr. Cool, 24 February 2009 - 06:04 PM.


#134 OFFLINE   CopyChief

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 11:25 AM

Dr Cool, I really think your issue is a different one than we're seeing, at least in St. Louis. I do record shows from non-local HD stations (including HDNet, we don't subscribe to MGM or Universal so I can't speak to those) and have never noticed as much as an audio blip on those.

On two of our satellite-delivered HD locals, the CBS and NBC affiliates, we're getting audio drops on nearly every network series. Drops occur both over the optical cable and on the TV2 coax connection.

The drops occur very frequently, at least every couple of minutes, and often in groups of two or three. They seem to last around half a second each. Often, they're repeatable with a rewind.

Another glitch seems as if it has become more common, too. Occasionally the video and audio will "freeze". I can rewind to get out of the freeze, and often I'm a minute or so ahead of where I thought I should be in the program. When I start playing again, there's often a drop right around the point of the freeze.

#135 OFFLINE   Dr. Cool

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 12:36 AM

CopyChief, thanks for the info.

#136 OFFLINE   Dood

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Posted 27 February 2009 - 07:57 AM

Well, I must say that I recorded Survivor last night on the local STL HD channel and there were NO sounds drops. None.

Have they fixed it or is this a tease?
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#137 OFFLINE   HobbyTalk

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Posted 27 February 2009 - 11:08 AM

Could be your local station has fixed their problem. Only way to know is to continue watching. I know at some times my local stations are terrible with my A/V receiver losing sync a lot. Most times there are no problems. I know I wish none of them would change audio formats between programming and commercials ;)
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#138 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 27 February 2009 - 01:47 PM

Well, I must say that I recorded Survivor last night on the local STL HD channel and there were NO sounds drops. None.

Have they fixed it or is this a tease?


That's KMOV (CBS), right? If you viewed it in a buffered state (not real time) and you're certain it was via sat and not OTA and you noticed no dropouts during the commercial breaks (I find most dropouts occur during film and not during video tape), it may have been resolved.

I hope you are right on all counts.
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#139 OFFLINE   Ron Barry

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Posted 27 February 2009 - 01:57 PM

Well it would be a fix at the sending end then since there was no update on the receiver end. People from St. Louis, report back in a few days or earlier if this truly is the case.
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#140 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 27 February 2009 - 09:31 PM

Well it would be a fix at the sending end then since there was no update on the receiver end. People from St. Louis, report back in a few days or earlier if this truly is the case.


Oh, if only it was true. After Dood's report, I thought I would check on tonite's episodes of Ghost Whisperer and Numb3rs on the local CBS afilliate........Audio dropouts all over the place. No change. Zero drops in real time. But hit the PAUSE button for a few seconds or SKIP BACK and I'm hearing several per minute. It's non-stop. Hit the LIVE button and they vanish!
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#141 OFFLINE   olds403

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Posted 28 February 2009 - 05:12 AM

I am still having the same audio dropout issues I have always had, starting with 6.14 and now with 6.16. They are very similar to Dr. Cool's issues. I also watch a lot of recorded material from HDNet, MGM, EncoreHD, but get them live also. Very short audible dropouts on both national and local OTA channels. I am using HDMI for video to TV and optical out for audio to AV receiver all the time.

It was very noticeable on my local Fox channel last night. Trying to watch the news and sometimes it was difficult to understand because the audio dropouts will obliterate a word here and there. I have seen no change in dropout behavior with any update.

#142 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 28 February 2009 - 07:43 AM

I am still having the same audio dropout issues I have always had, starting with 6.14 and now with 6.16. They are very similar to Dr. Cool's issues. I also watch a lot of recorded material from HDNet, MGM, EncoreHD, but get them live also. Very short audible dropouts on both national and local OTA channels. I am using HDMI for video to TV and optical out for audio to AV receiver all the time.

It was very noticeable on my local Fox channel last night. Trying to watch the news and sometimes it was difficult to understand because the audio dropouts will obliterate a word here and there. I have seen no change in dropout behavior with any update.


Are you located in the Detroit DMA and locked onto the 118 sat? That might point to a common cause. If so, we may have to wait for E* to move us onto the 129 bird, which is in the cards anyway. But no clue as to when.

I don't know if such a move will change anything but it would clearly eliminate a variable.
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#143 OFFLINE   Ron Barry

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Posted 28 February 2009 - 03:43 PM

Oh, if only it was true. After Dood's report, I thought I would check on tonite's episodes of Ghost Whisperer and Numb3rs on the local CBS afilliate........Audio dropouts all over the place. No change. Zero drops in real time. But hit the PAUSE button for a few seconds or SKIP BACK and I'm hearing several per minute. It's non-stop. Hit the LIVE button and they vanish!


Thanks for the feedback moman.. Would have shocked me but was hoping it to be true.
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#144 OFFLINE   olds403

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Posted 01 March 2009 - 02:35 PM

I am in the Lansing Michigan DMA, my satellites are 110/119 and 61.5. Which satellite I see should have no bearing on my OTA through the 722, which I also have dropouts on. I believe it is some sort of audio processing problem in the 722. I get the dropouts on pretty much all the HD channels I watch, OTA and Satellite. I may get them on SD channels too except I don't watch those often enough to notice.

#145 OFFLINE   CopyChief

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Posted 01 March 2009 - 02:48 PM

I can confirm that I still have the drops, too, in St. Louis. Not much appears to have changed.

For what it's worth, this week I wrote to both local stations affected by the problems, and they said they are aware of the issue and are "pressuring" Dish to fix the problems.

I know a lot of their customers have been "pressuring" Dish, too, and we see how far that has gotten us since October, so I'm not feeling especially hopeful on this day.

#146 OFFLINE   Kevin Brown

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 08:04 PM

I only had the FOX/ABC dropout problem to a slight degree before. But overall dropouts got worse with 616. I now have 617, and I think things are much improved !!

#147 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 12:28 AM

I only had the FOX/ABC dropout problem to a slight degree before. But overall dropouts got worse with 616. I now have 617, and I think things are much improved !!

Do you have a 622 or 722?

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#148 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 09:19 AM

I am in the Lansing Michigan DMA, my satellites are 110/119 and 61.5. Which satellite I see should have no bearing on my OTA through the 722, which I also have dropouts on. I believe it is some sort of audio processing problem in the 722. I get the dropouts on pretty much all the HD channels I watch, OTA and Satellite. I may get them on SD channels too except I don't watch those often enough to notice.


I must have missed the fact that your issues are from OTA channels. That's probably unrelated to this discussion as I believe most reports in this particular thread point towards the locals via sat. But then again, I have no doubt that your issue is very real and perhaps there is a common cause.
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#149 OFFLINE   moman19

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Posted 03 March 2009 - 09:20 AM

Do you have a 622 or 722?


Great question. I look forward to hearing his response. In my case, only the 722 has this issue.
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#150 OFFLINE   Dood

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Posted 04 March 2009 - 09:04 AM

I was wrong, the problems are now worse than ever.

I just watched Big Bang Theory and counted 588 drops. I then watched Two And A Half Men and counted 444 drops.

As soon as my contract is up I am done with Dish Network. They have not fixed the problem and have done nothing but lie to me.

I see now why DirecTV is gaining so many customers and Dish Network is losing so many.
Dood-




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