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AM21 and Genie/C31


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34 replies to this topic

#21 OFFLINE   jangell2

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 10:45 AM

And they also work with the R22. In fact, even if you don't have DirecTV HD if you hook an AM-21 to an R22 you can record all off-air channels in HD. Trust me, I know!!

That brings up a couple of questions: 1) Do you get a guide when using the AM21 this way? and 2) Would my old HR20 (which has OTA built-in) be usable to record OTA and would I have a guide with info in it?

Here's a third question: why the heck did they get rid of built-in OTA? I don't want OTA to get rid of DTV, but to supplement it when there's rain fade.
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#22 OFFLINE   CCarncross

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 11:18 AM

That brings up a couple of questions: 1) Do you get a guide when using the AM21 this way? and 2) Would my old HR20 (which has OTA built-in) be usable to record OTA and would I have a guide with info in it?

Here's a third question: why the heck did they get rid of built-in OTA? I don't want OTA to get rid of DTV, but to supplement it when there's rain fade.


1) Yes, you get guide data for the channels that are tunable in your zip code(s) entered during setup.

2) The HR20 works the same way it always has but you have to keep it activated if thats what you're asking. They are door stops if they arent activated on your account.

They got rid of built-in OTA because most dont use it at all so to add the cost of OTA to each and every unit was not cost effective. They removed it and made it an option for that small percentage of customers that still use it.

Rain fade or not I use OTA for all my network recordings/viewing, mpeg 2 is much smoother when it comes to trickplay functions, always has been and probably always will be, and I dont have to horse around with switching recordings back and forth between OTA and SAT locals...OTA just works, always unless the local station is having issues which is rare. I also see a slight improvement in PQ. MPEG2 takes more disk space but I use 2TB drives on all my DVR's so its not an issue for me. Another added bonus to OTA is if a dvr dies, all the OTA recordings can be played back on any other dvr because they are not encrypted or "married" to the dvr that recorded them. This is a real bonus for me.

#23 OFFLINE   JosephB

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 07:18 PM

Does this include the older AM21? I'm looking at coming back to DirecTV and have one of the first generation AM21s (not the smaller, slimmer one)

#24 OFFLINE   xzi

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 09:24 PM

Does this include the older AM21? I'm looking at coming back to DirecTV and have one of the first generation AM21s (not the smaller, slimmer one)


I'm using one of the first AM21's ever made (part of the beta way back when) and I'm using it just fine with an HR34 and Samsung RVU--both work great.

#25 OFFLINE   tkrandall

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 09:39 PM

Another added bonus to OTA is if a dvr dies, all the OTA recordings can be played back on any other dvr because they are not encrypted or "married" to the dvr that recorded them. This is a real bonus for me.


I did not know that. Are you using external esata drives?

#26 OFFLINE   CCarncross

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 09:51 PM

I did not know that. Are you using external esata drives?


Since Oct 2006 or shortly after when eSATA support was originally enabled, I ran out and bought a 500GB drive literally that same week....and I record all my network programming from the OTA versions of the stations...I can literally move the external drive to any of my HR2x dvrs and all the OTA recordings play back fine. Another reason if I'm going to watch series from the networks(CBS, ABC, etc.) I want to record from OTA.

#27 OFFLINE   digitalbrad

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 10:17 PM

I can happily say that my new upgrade to the HR34 worked great with my AM21N. My OTA channels work and updated channel guide populated them after a few hours. I now have OTA channels on all TVs instead of just the main set.

#28 OFFLINE   jangell2

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 03:45 PM

I can happily say that my new upgrade to the HR34 worked great with my AM21N. My OTA channels work and updated channel guide populated them after a few hours. I now have OTA channels on all TVs instead of just the main set.

What was the installation like? Did you have to do things in a special sequence? Any tips you'd like to provide?
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#29 OFFLINE   jangell2

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 07:36 PM

My AM21 came today and it installed easily. The instructions that came with it are pretty good.

The only problem is that my local PBS station didn't show up as one of my local stations. Is there someplace I can look at on DTV to see what they consider local to me?
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#30 OFFLINE   tkrandall

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 08:09 PM

I don't know of a place you can see what they have in their database

What kind of receiver did you hook the am21 to? If not an hr34 then you are 100% dependent on the list of OTA stations and subchannels for your market that directv maintains. There is no scanning capability to add additional stations. It's a station list download that happens during setup.

If hooked to an hr34 then I believe you can scan for additional channels not in the downloaded database and the receiver will let you tune to it, but it will have no programming info in the guide if that station is not part of their database.

#31 OFFLINE   jangell2

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:40 AM

I don't know of a place you can see what they have in their database

What kind of receiver did you hook the am21 to? If not an hr34 then you are 100% dependent on the list of OTA stations and subchannels for your market that directv maintains. There is no scanning capability to add additional stations. It's a station list download that happens during setup.

If hooked to an hr34 then I believe you can scan for additional channels not in the downloaded database and the receiver will let you tune to it, but it will have no programming info in the guide if that station is not part of their database.


I'm hooked up to an HR34. Does the AM21 or HR34 do the scanning for additional channels?

What strikes me as weird, is that I get my local PBS channel from DTV, so they recognize it as a valid local for me. Why wouldn't it also be valid for OTA? I've never been able to bring it in with my rabbit ears. If the AM21 can't see it via the rabbit ears, would that prevent it from even listing it?
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#32 OFFLINE   TMan

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 01:36 PM

Based on information in this and other dbstalk threads, I've ordered an AM21N.

I haven't experienced reception problems due to weather yet, and frankly I don't know how much or little to expect that to be a problem, but it will be nice to have an OTA backup method to tune the big 4 network broadcasts, and gain access to recording the occasional subchannel. I'm only ten miles from our area's transmitters, so I'm sure my little antenna will do nicely with the AM21, just like it did with my TiVo.
October 2012 DirecTV subscriber - HR34(Genie)/C31/C31 - AU9-S-SWM Five LNB - Premier

#33 OFFLINE   Beerstalker

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 10:11 AM

I'm hooked up to an HR34. Does the AM21 or HR34 do the scanning for additional channels?

What strikes me as weird, is that I get my local PBS channel from DTV, so they recognize it as a valid local for me. Why wouldn't it also be valid for OTA? I've never been able to bring it in with my rabbit ears. If the AM21 can't see it via the rabbit ears, would that prevent it from even listing it?


Yes, I believe if the HR34 scans and doesn't see the channel because your antenna won't receive it, then it doesn't add it to the line-up. I'm betting if you get a longer range antenna that it will show up if you run the AM21 setup again.
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#34 OFFLINE   TMan

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 09:17 PM

Finally hooked up my AM21 tonight. The snowstorm knocked out the sat signal until I cleared the dish, so I figured I ought to get redundancy for my locals going. All seems well.
October 2012 DirecTV subscriber - HR34(Genie)/C31/C31 - AU9-S-SWM Five LNB - Premier

#35 OFFLINE   jamsys

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 10:33 PM

Not a big poster here, but I am at a loss. I havent used my HR34 that has the AM21 connected to it for a while. Got a new projector and brought up my guide. All the OTA channels are gone... Did a resetup, and I dont get the opportunity to edit the OTA channels like I do on my HD24 w/ the AM21....

Ok, poss bad cable.. Swapped the OTA cable, and it located all my channels.... About 6 hours later, went to 7-1 and it kept giving me 'searching for OTA antenna etc' DTV told me to shove it, as even tho my service plan covers all DTV appliances, the AM21 isnt a Satellite box and they refuse to do anything...

Any ideas??? I just got a new 4k projector and the compressed local signals over DTV look like crap

Scott




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