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Guest Message by DevFuse

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HR24-500 OTA recording unreliable


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6 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   cover

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 09:34 AM

Just received an HR24-500 a few days ago. I record most shows OTA because the picture quality is significantly better than Memphis LiL.

Concerned about the problems elwaylite has experienced, I decided to set up a number of OTA recordings as a test. I tried to keep both tuners pretty busy recording OTA for most of an evening and night. I selected shows on most of the Memphis OTA stations, all of which show 90%-100% signal strength on the antenna meter.

Here are my results:

Total recordings attempted: 22
Successful recordings: 15

% failed: 32%

Almost 1/3 of the OTA recordings I attempted failed. And that was after I noticed an inexplicable yet persistent 792 (searching for OTA signal) error a couple of hours into the test and rebooted to correct it.

Of the recordings that failed, most were black/blank and went immediately to the "do you want to delete" prompt. A couple of them seemed to just lock up on a frame.

When I rebooted the box, ALL of the failed recordings were removed from the list. This smells like a software issue to me. I hope DirecTV is paying attention and working on getting it fixed.

Given the inferior picture quality of satellite LiL compared to OTA, if I can't reliably record OTA I'll have to think really hard about leaving DirecTV.

Edited by cover, 26 July 2010 - 09:54 AM.


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#2 OFFLINE   Jason Whiddon

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 09:46 AM

Hopefully D* will work on it, because it's pretty lame I paid for an AM21 I cannot use.
65" VT50 / BDP-S6200
X4000 / Outlaw Model 7125
Klipsch RF82 II and RC62 II / Hsu VTF-15H (2)
Directv HR44-200 / HR24-500

 


#3 OFFLINE   hasan

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 10:02 AM

Here are my results:

Total recordings attempted: 22
Successful recordings: 15

I hope it is software and now hardware and I hope DirecTV is paying attention and working on getting it fixed.

Given the inferior picture quality of satellite LiL compared to OTA, if I can't reliably record OTA I'll have to think really hard about leaving DirecTV.


No one has been a bigger OTA fan than I have been (look at my history of posts on these topics). I was also involved with the very first AM21s that came out (testing).

The one thing you can take a little comfort from is that the problem is in the firmware and they are working on it. I have already seen some results posted. (in a different forum).

As far as some sort of vastly superior PQ of OTA vs. MPEG-4 LIL, I'm sorry, I just don't see it. OTA is better, but only very, very slightly. The big advantage of OTA is it being virtually unaffected by precipitation attenuation. I have never lost an OTA signal due to precip.

The one disadvantage to OTA recording is how much space it takes up, because it's using MPEG-2. MPEG-4 is much more efficient.

If there is a "dramatic" difference between your HD-LIL and the corresponding OTA station, something isn't right. I have a 60" Samsung with a super sharp picture, sitting about 11' away, and I just can't see a world of difference. It's there, but it isn't dramatic, at least here.

I have AM21s on an HR21-200 and an H21-200 and they have performed very well, after some early firmware upgrades. The big problem has been getting the OTA channel listings right, because it is the channel data that determines where the AM21 "looks" for signals, as it can't do it on its own. This has been a long term problem in some markets, and a very bad problem when the HR20-700 was first released several years ago. The problem is not model (sat box) specific, it is a function of the firmware containing the proper signal information to cause the AM21 or internal tuners to look in the right place.

...hasan, N0AN

SlimLine5-SWiMLNB/DECA/WHDVR
HR44-700, WD20EURX 2 TB eSATA/ThermalTake Max 5 Enclosure

HR24-200, WD20EVDS 2 TB eSATA/ThermalTake Dock

HR24-200, H21-200. Samsung UN60C6400 60" LED/LCD

DirecTV since 1995


#4 OFFLINE   Jason Whiddon

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 10:10 AM

Glad to hear they are working on it. On another note PQ is subjective (my tv is 55"), and I can easily see the softness on D* locals vs OTA. A couple of my locals have subchannels and are already bad OTA, so it just makes Directv's PQ worse. Regardless, even if it is only a little better, the point is we paid for an HR24, we paid for an AM21, we expect to be able to record the highest PQ available.

I just dont get how a bug this simple got thru beta testing. I'd rank OTA for 1) reliability, 2) PQ, but PQ does matter to me very much, which is why Im with Directv and not Dish.

On the reliability note, I live in the rainiest city int he country, and have a UPS on my HR24 and EHD. It p's me off that I have to hope I dont lose signal right now on local recordings.

I know people will say "it's only tv", and I don't live my life around it, but I do like a lot of shows. We stay 1-2 weeks behind on purpose, and catch up when we can. Its nice when you sit down to watch something thats 2 weeks old, that was lost due to rain fade, or a DVR that can't work right with the AM21.
65" VT50 / BDP-S6200
X4000 / Outlaw Model 7125
Klipsch RF82 II and RC62 II / Hsu VTF-15H (2)
Directv HR44-200 / HR24-500

 


#5 OFFLINE   cover

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 10:27 AM

No one has been a bigger OTA fan than I have been (look at my history of posts on these topics). I was also involved with the very first AM21s that came out (testing).

The one thing you can take a little comfort from is that the problem is in the firmware and they are working on it. I have already seen some results posted. (in a different forum).

As far as some sort of vastly superior PQ of OTA vs. MPEG-4 LIL, I'm sorry, I just don't see it. OTA is better, but only very, very slightly. The big advantage of OTA is it being virtually unaffected by precipitation attenuation. I have never lost an OTA signal due to precip.

The one disadvantage to OTA recording is how much space it takes up, because it's using MPEG-2. MPEG-4 is much more efficient.

If there is a "dramatic" difference between your HD-LIL and the corresponding OTA station, something isn't right. I have a 60" Samsung with a super sharp picture, sitting about 11' away, and I just can't see a world of difference. It's there, but it isn't dramatic, at least here.

I have AM21s on an HR21-200 and an H21-200 and they have performed very well, after some early firmware upgrades. The big problem has been getting the OTA channel listings right, because it is the channel data that determines where the AM21 "looks" for signals, as it can't do it on its own. This has been a long term problem in some markets, and a very bad problem when the HR20-700 was first released several years ago. The problem is not model (sat box) specific, it is a function of the firmware containing the proper signal information to cause the AM21 or internal tuners to look in the right place.


Glad to hear there are more of us out there that are OTA fans and that DTV is working on the issue.

I was careful to avoid describing the OTA picture as vastly or dramatically superior. It's not and many, perhaps most, people wouldn't notice the difference until it was pointed out. I would say that OTA picture quality is significantly better than from the satellite. The picture on the MPEG4 locals is softer and is much quicker to pixelate during fast action (e.g. sports) when then whole screen needs to be redrawn. I suspect this is not because there's an inherent problem with MPEG4 - picture quality on national "cable" networks is outstanding - but because DirecTV is unwilling or unable to provide as much bandwidth as the LiL channels really need. I understand that it is difficult and demanding to retransmit locals into every market - I just want a reliable OTA option for those of us bothered by the picture quality. I dare say most of us who frequent DBSTalk have spent a great deal of money over the years in order to get the best technology and picture quality possible.

I have definitely seen the problem with OTA channel listings and frequency assignments on my HR20s. When one OTA channel was selected, the box would tune to a different OTA channel or just to an empty frequency. It got particularly bad around the time of the national HD cutover, but hasn't seemed to crop up noticeably but a couple of time since then. That doesn't seem to be the problem I'm seeing currently with the HR24-500, since the box seemed to recognized the recordings were bad and deleted them from the list upon reboot. If it had just tuned to the wrong frequency, I'd expect to see a "searching for signal" type of error in the recording history.

#6 OFFLINE   Jason Whiddon

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 10:29 AM

Glad to hear there are more of us out there that are OTA fans and that DTV is working on the issue.

I was careful to avoid describing the OTA picture as vastly or dramatically superior. It's not and many, perhaps most, people wouldn't notice the difference until it was pointed out. I would say that OTA picture quality is significantly better than from the satellite. The picture on the MPEG4 locals is softer and is much quicker to pixelate during fast action (e.g. sports) when then whole screen needs to be redrawn. I suspect this is not because there's an inherent problem with MPEG4 - picture quality on national "cable" networks is outstanding - but because DirecTV is unwilling or unable to provide as much bandwidth as the LiL channels really need. I understand that it is difficult and demanding to retransmit locals into every market - I just want a reliable OTA option for those of us bothered by the picture quality. I dare say most of us who frequent DBSTalk have spent a great deal of money over the years in order to get the best technology and picture quality possible.

I have definitely seen the problem with OTA channel listings and frequency assignments on my HR20s. When one OTA channel was selected, the box would tune to a different OTA channel or just to an empty frequency. It got particularly bad around the time of the national HD cutover, but hasn't seemed to crop up noticeably but a couple of time since then. That doesn't seem to be the problem I'm seeing currently with the HR24-500, since the box seemed to recognized the recordings were bad and deleted them from the list upon reboot. If it had just tuned to the wrong frequency, I'd expect to see a "searching for signal" type of error in the recording history.


Same thing I see. Shows on Syfy look better than Lost on ABC via Directv.
65" VT50 / BDP-S6200
X4000 / Outlaw Model 7125
Klipsch RF82 II and RC62 II / Hsu VTF-15H (2)
Directv HR44-200 / HR24-500

 


#7 OFFLINE   cover

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Posted 26 July 2010 - 10:30 AM

I know people will say "it's only tv", and I don't live my life around it, but I do like a lot of shows. We stay 1-2 weeks behind on purpose, and catch up when we can. Its nice when you sit down to watch something thats 2 weeks old, that was lost due to rain fade, or a DVR that can't work right with the AM21.


Exactly. As we mentioned in another thread, you and I have been giving money to Apple and Amazon respectively to get shows that were missed due to recording issues.




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