Jump to content


Welcome to DBSTalk


Sign In 

Create Account
Welcome to DBSTalk, like most online communities you must register to view or post in our community, but don't worry this is a simple free process that requires minimal information for you to signup. Be a part of DBSTalk by signing in or creating an account.
  • Start new topics and reply to others
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get email updates
  • Get your own profile page and make new friends
  • Send personal messages to other members.
 
Guest Message by DevFuse

Photo
- - - - -

My first 100 Days with the HR-20


  • This topic is locked This topic is locked
54 replies to this topic

#41 OFFLINE   hasan

hasan

    Hall Of Fame

  • Registered
  • 5,780 posts
  • LocationOgden, IA
Joined: Sep 22, 2006

Posted 12 July 2007 - 08:26 AM

Hasan, I've read elsewhere about this. A couple people were missing some digital locals. They found out the missing stations weren't showing up on Zap2It. They contacted the stations to find out they weren't submitting guide data to Tribune. The stations started submitting guide data, they showed up on Zap2It and the next day they appeared on the HR20 and could tune to them.

Now I have no idea if this works all the time but it seems to be the crux of the OTA issues. If Tribune isn't tracking the station then the HR20's don't know anything about them. So make sure the stations are submitting guide data to Tribune and properly identify their frequency.


That is an excellent suggestion! Of course, I knew I could do this, but silly me, I expected D* to do the follow-up, as they are the ones not delivering on the service that they purchase from Tribune. I find it ...well...disconcerting that I have to chase down their problem. They've been told many times. Why won't they do the leg work?

In any case, I'm afraid when I call these stations, I'm going to get a "blank stare" (excuse the mixed metaphor) when I say, "You need to send your channel information to the Tribune Company". I can just hear them saying, "Who are they?" "How do we contact them?", "What are we supposed to send them?"

If anyone knows (since it appears I'm going to have to do D*'s job for them) EXACTLY where this info is supposed to be sent at "Tribune", and what that information is, PLEASE, PLEASE tell me, and I'll begin the odyssey of chasing down the individual stations.

I have no addresses, no contact person, nothing about Tribune.

...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


...Ads Help To Support This SIte...

#42 OFFLINE   veryoldschool

veryoldschool

    Lifetime Achiever

  • Moderators
  • 41,391 posts
Joined: Dec 09, 2006

Posted 12 July 2007 - 08:31 AM

VOS,
I've gone through the entire troubleshooting routine on this one. Not only changing cables, but changing multiswitches. I also think it's one of those issues that happens a lot more than it is reported because it's only going to be seen on certain occasions and then only if the person is recording two shows at the same time.
I'd live with this issue if DirecTV would fix some of the other bugs I've noted.

Clearly I haven't run across this.
What exactly is it?
You watch one & record another. Since the tuners will swap for each channel change if there is no recording, you won't see it until the "bad" tuner is used for recording?
Or when you only set up two recordings?
The program doesn't record?
Just trying to get a handle.
A.K.A VOS

#43 OFFLINE   Fish Man

Fish Man

    Godfather

  • Registered
  • 439 posts
Joined: Apr 22, 2002

Posted 12 July 2007 - 08:38 AM

Clearly I haven't run across this.
What exactly is it?
You watch one & record another. Since the tuners will swap for each channel change if there is no recording, you won't see it until the "bad" tuner is used for recording?
Or when you only set up two recordings?
The program doesn't record?
Just trying to get a handle.


The unit will get into a mode where it will NEVER record 2 programs at once. Each recording that fails will be listed as "canceled" in the history list for the reason that it conflicted with the one that DID record.

When it is in this mode, and is recording one thing off the satellite, you can still watch another satellite delivered channel. (Both SAT tuners obviously are working.)

But, again, it will NEVER record 2 things at once. (Reboot, clears the "mode".)

Signal strengths on both SAT tuners look good on all sats when in this "mode".

"Smoking gun" indication of this mode appears on the info screen, where one of the SAT tuners will not have the word "record" at the end of its description.

Like I posted above:

SAT Tuner 1: MPEG2, MPEG4, Record
SAT Tuner 2: MPEG2, MPEG4,
ATSC Tuner 1: Record
ATSC Tuner 2: Record

Again, I'm at work and this is from memory, so wording is almost surely not exact. However, note the lack of the word "record" at the end of the line about SAT 2. Note also the comma. It is always present in this "mode".

The way I read the above, tuner 2 is "active" (and, indeed, you can watch live TV off of it) but the firmware has decided it will not RECORD from it for some reason.

#44 OFFLINE   veryoldschool

veryoldschool

    Lifetime Achiever

  • Moderators
  • 41,391 posts
Joined: Dec 09, 2006

Posted 12 July 2007 - 08:45 AM

The unit will get into a mode where it will NEVER record 2 programs at once. Each recording that fails will be listed as "canceled" in the history list for the reason that it conflicted with the one that DID record.

When it is in this mode, and is recording one thing off the satellite, you can still watch another satellite delivered channel. (Both SAT tuners obviously are working.)

But, again, it will NEVER record 2 things at once. (Reboot, clears the "mode".)

Signal strengths on both SAT tuners look good on all sats when in this "mode".

"Smoking gun" indication of this mode appears on the info screen, where one of the SAT tuners will not have the word "record" at the end of its description.

Like I posted above:

SAT Tuner 1: MPEG2, MPEG4, Record
SAT Tuner 2: MPEG2, MPEG4,
ATSC Tuner 1: Record
ATSC Tuner 2: Record

Again, I'm at work and this is from memory, so wording is almost surely not exact. However, note the lack of the word "record" at the end of the line about SAT 2. Note also the comma. It is always present in this "mode".

The way I read the above, tuner 2 is "active" (and, indeed, you can watch live TV off of it) but the firmware has decided it will not RECORD from it for some reason.

Thanks, I've read some posting of this, but mistook this for the "old tuner #2" problem.
Rarely do I find two things to record at the same time, but about once a week I do for the HBO/Starz premiers. So far haven't been bit with it.
A.K.A VOS

#45 OFFLINE   jonaswan2

jonaswan2

    Icon

  • Registered
  • 895 posts
Joined: Oct 29, 2005

Posted 12 July 2007 - 08:51 AM

That is an excellent suggestion! Of course, I knew I could do this, but silly me, I expected D* to do the follow-up, as they are the ones not delivering on the service that they purchase from Tribune. I find it ...well...disconcerting that I have to chase down their problem. They've been told many times. Why won't they do the leg work?

In any case, I'm afraid when I call these stations, I'm going to get a "blank stare" (excuse the mixed metaphor) when I say, "You need to send your channel information to the Tribune Company". I can just hear them saying, "Who are they?" "How do we contact them?", "What are we supposed to send them?"

If anyone knows (since it appears I'm going to have to do D*'s job for them) EXACTLY where this info is supposed to be sent at "Tribune", and what that information is, PLEASE, PLEASE tell me, and I'll begin the odyssey of chasing down the individual stations.

I have no addresses, no contact person, nothing about Tribune.


Well TMS has a pretty long contact list page. I have no clue who you should tell them to contact, but the TV operators should know.

http://www.tms.tribu...m/contacts.html

#46 OFFLINE   TBoneit

TBoneit

    Hall Of Fame

  • Registered
  • 2,250 posts
Joined: Jul 27, 2006

Posted 12 July 2007 - 09:08 AM

$800 for the series 3 and $8 to $13 a month, Ouch


Well if you like Tivo and want a good DVR for cable/OTA

Also a possibility is that one of Tivos specials was taken advantage of.

Right now Tivo is running a promo where they sell you a new series 2 Tivo for $299 and transfer the lifetime sub. Only Product Lifetime Service subscriptions activated before June 15, 2003 series 1 are eligible. Of course you are paying them $200 over the price for a new series 2 that you have to pay monthly for.
http://www.tivo.com/...series2plt.html

Someone on a video forum mentioned that they have also run that sort of special for Series 3 Tivos also. No mention of price for that was given.

So presuming that Tivo stays in business, With the pricing below, anything over 1 year with the one year plan is gravy. Per the Tivo website http://dynamic.tivo....eries280hrDTDVR
$16.95 per month with 1-year plan Reduced from $19.95
$14.95 per month with 2-year plan
$12.95 per month with 3-year plan

Being somewhat pessimistic I'm not sure what will happen to Tivo when they lose all revenue from DirecTV. Or I'd most likely jump on it to replace my aging Tivo Series 1.

#47 OFFLINE   Ken S

Ken S

    Hall Of Fame

  • Topic Starter
  • Registered
  • 6,201 posts
Joined: Feb 12, 2007

Posted 12 July 2007 - 09:13 AM

Clearly I haven't run across this.
What exactly is it?
You watch one & record another. Since the tuners will swap for each channel change if there is no recording, you won't see it until the "bad" tuner is used for recording?
Or when you only set up two recordings?
The program doesn't record?
Just trying to get a handle.


VOS,

Here's how I discovered the problem

I was recording one show and went to record another. The HR-20 came back with the you have stop the first recording to do that message.
I thought...hmmm...I thought this thing could record two shows at once.
So, I tried a few combinations of trying to record two shows and it keeps balking.
So, I run the system test...everything comes back as having passed (Tuner 1 and Tuner 2).
So, I go into the Sat Setup and look at the signal on Tuner 1 and then switch to Tuner 2 and both are receiving signal.
Hmm..
Try to record two shows again...no luck
So, I go back to the Sat Setup and go to signal meters (where it displays both tuners at the same time...and bingo...Tuner 1 is fine, Tuner 2 is showing 0.)
So, it appears both tuners may work...but not at the same time.

I reboot the machine and it then shows signal on both tuners in the Signal Meters screen and agrees to record two shows at once.

Now, every so often (if I know I'm going to be recording on both tuners) I go to Signal Meters to check to make sure it's working.
It doesn't happen (or I don't notice it) that often, but it's something I have to be aware of.
I have seen this issue on two of our boxes. Once on one and twice on another. The third has probably never been called on to use both tuners at the same time.

It's an annoyance, but compared to the other issues...

#48 OFFLINE   veryoldschool

veryoldschool

    Lifetime Achiever

  • Moderators
  • 41,391 posts
Joined: Dec 09, 2006

Posted 12 July 2007 - 09:33 AM

KenS,
This is so close to the "bad tuner #2 (or #1)" bug, but may just be a subset.
I have so little tolerance for things like this, that I'd be getting the box replaced. If after that it I found it returning only then would I start to think it was software.
As [I think I have posted] there was a batch of bad tuner #2 some months ago, that really was bad hardware. I don't know what was the cause down in Mexico, but they built a bunch that all had a problem very close to this.
A.K.A VOS

#49 OFFLINE   YDKCooKiE

YDKCooKiE

    Cool Member

  • Registered
  • 19 posts
Joined: Apr 17, 2007

Posted 12 July 2007 - 10:10 AM

I'll be honest, I came from Time Warner cable which used the SA 8300HD DVR - I wasn't terribly impressed, the UI looked like something out of the Commodore days of computing, and I couldn't get the channels I wanted due to the fine folks at TWC arguing with some network executives over where they put the network on their service.

That said, I've had no problems using the HR20 that I have, and it's features are at least comparable, if not better than, my old 8300HD. So far I'm impressed, and I can't say I've had a TiVO to compare to, so I'm perfectly happy with what I've received. I haven't seen many of the issues that folks here complain of, such as pixellated images, audio not matching up, much of that just hasn't been my experience.

The only thing that's annoyed me thus far was the scroll speed within the guide, which is mostly fixed, and I had already made it a habit of stopping a show from recording 2-3 minutes after the actual "Scheduled end" due to the fact that a lot of network execs allow their shows to go over the one hour limit. All in all, I've been impressed, and I'm about 4 months into my service.

#50 OFFLINE   Ken S

Ken S

    Hall Of Fame

  • Topic Starter
  • Registered
  • 6,201 posts
Joined: Feb 12, 2007

Posted 13 July 2007 - 06:24 AM

What other upnp devices do you have ? I have multiple PC and windows home servers,xbox and others and do not have lockup problems.


Wireless cameras from Panasonic have UPnP enabled as does my router. It's really not all that obscure.

If I turn all the UPnP devices off and plug my network cables in the HR-20s will boot properly. If I put the UPnP devices back online and reboot the HR-20 it will invariably lock during the boot-up sequence.

I haven't tried since the last patch because the patch notes had nothing about the issue and, frankly, I'm getting tired of debugging the HR-20.

#51 OFFLINE   Ken S

Ken S

    Hall Of Fame

  • Topic Starter
  • Registered
  • 6,201 posts
Joined: Feb 12, 2007

Posted 13 July 2007 - 06:31 AM

KenS,
This is so close to the "bad tuner #2 (or #1)" bug, but may just be a subset.
I have so little tolerance for things like this, that I'd be getting the box replaced. If after that it I found it returning only then would I start to think it was software.
As [I think I have posted] there was a batch of bad tuner #2 some months ago, that really was bad hardware. I don't know what was the cause down in Mexico, but they built a bunch that all had a problem very close to this.


VOS,
It may be hardware, it may be software, but it has happened on at least two of my machines. I'm almost getting embarrassed to call Crutchfield and ask for new machines although they have been nothing but apologetic and responsive when I've asked to make returns.

As for calling DirecTV for the returns...I loathe calling them...it always turns into long hold times and three calls and then waiting for an appointment for a guy that won't bring a replacement box anyway. I hear they may actually ship boxes now, but if it meant having my contract extended I wouldn't do it.

At some point in time you just say...it's not worth the time and effort...I'll just hope something better comes along or the new ownership at DirecTV deems it important enough to make their "flagship" device a bit more reliable.

#52 OFFLINE   markmicallef

markmicallef

    New Member

  • Registered
  • 7 posts
Joined: Jul 14, 2007

Posted 14 July 2007 - 07:13 PM

You may have a lemon, I have had mine 3 months. It has recorded every thing asked
and I have not lost any recorded shows, knock on wood.
Mark Micallef
Chino, CA

___________________________
HR20-100 | Mitsubishi 52" 1080 DLP | Onkyo Receiver | Klipsch front speakers | Bose Rear speakers | Polk Audio Sub | Tripp-Lite UPS
Sony SAT60 in Bedroom

#53 OFFLINE   Ken S

Ken S

    Hall Of Fame

  • Topic Starter
  • Registered
  • 6,201 posts
Joined: Feb 12, 2007

Posted 14 July 2007 - 10:10 PM

You may have a lemon, I have had mine 3 months. It has recorded every thing asked
and I have not lost any recorded shows, knock on wood.


Umm...it would have to be three lemons...also some of the problems are easily replicated. But...that doesn't mean everyone is going to experience, or even notice, the issues.

#54 OFFLINE   HouseBowlrz

HouseBowlrz

    Godfather

  • Registered
  • 294 posts
  • LocationCentreville, VA
Joined: Jul 15, 2007

Posted 21 July 2007 - 08:09 PM

HR-20: Positives for me (Meaning the good things I have found and use with the HR-20. Other people probably utilize other benefits like OTA)

1. Having an HD picture can be spectacular.
2. The Prioritizer is a nice feature and allows for the user to make more decisions about what is/isn't recorded.
3. The UI isn't bad...It's different, but on par with the Tivo.
4. The HD holds a LOT more SD programming than my Tivo did.
5. I don't have to reprogram in SORT and 30-second skip after a device reboot.
6. The List with folders is a nice way to organize the programming.
7. The space remaining/used bar is helpful (hopefully, it's accurate).


I've had my HR-20 since mid-October 2006; had I found these forums when I purchased my widescreen, I'd have given thought to finding something else on e-Bay. :lol:

I agree with all seven positives ... it took me some time to get used to the User Interface and, since I still have my DirecTiVo upstairs, sometimes forget which is which. That's just me suffering from CRS ... :eek2:

The Cons
1. The Box is unreliable in handling its basic function. Recording shows. There are several problems with the box in this regards.
- The HR-20 has problems starting and stopping a show on time. It is almost mandatory to "pad" record requests if you want the first few seconds or last minute of a show.
- The HR-20 just will not record some shows that appear in its guide. Setting a Series Record is no guarantee that you'll record those shows. (See my other posts on Wiggles & Blues Clues)
- The HR-20 will not populate it's To Do list for hours (and maybe days) after you set a Series Record making it even harder to determine if your show will be recorded.


Way back when the networks actually had an abundance of quality programming (in the 70's and 80's), there was always three or four minutes following the credits of one until the start of the next. Now, the credits of the previous are rolling as the introduction of the next are starting ... (watch "Law & Order" on TNT - gawd, I hate that)

I've learned to pad a minute on each end of the show ... never hurts.

4. On occasion the HR 20 will shutdown a tuner without warning. Programs won't record and even their system test will not report the problem.


Yeah, that happened to me a couple of nights ago ... I came down one morning and, after turning on the TV, saw "No Signal" floating on the screen. Remote was non-responsive so it was RBR (red button reboot). This was happening on a more regular basis when it was connected to my home network; this past week, I was not connected to my home net.

10. The HR-20 Remote tends to suffer from key bounce...meaning pressing a key once may trigger that function/character being entered twice on screen.


I've had a couple of replacement boxes sent (back in the Fall and Winter) and on one of those occasions, a remote was included. I started using the second remove because it had larger keys as well as the hopes that the key bounce was related to the remote. Not so, I still get the bounce ... :(

11. Audio dropouts, audio/video sync issues and pixelation and other PQ issues.


Most times, it's usually with the HD channels ... happened several times during today's British Open on ABC.

I live under the flight path for northbound approaches to IAD (Dulles International) so I'm used to an occasional "blip".

12. Connecting the HR-20 to a network where UPnP is active will cause the HR-20 to lockup and cease operation. It will also prevent it from rebooting properly until the network cable is removed. This isn't a huge problem now because I don't need/want to play music or display pictures through the HR-20, but it will be if they require the network connection for their Video on Demand services.


I plugged mine in as well, especially since the techs said it should not be causing problems I had been having. What got me very frustrated was when I had shows recording concurrently with Season Pass and the second one (which started one minute later) didn't record for consecutive weeks. I disconnected the RJ-45 and things worked like they should.

I have a few things in my NAT'ed home network: Win2K desktop (wireless), WinXP Pro laptop (wireless), Linux Slackware File Server, Linux Smoothwall Firewall, Vonage VoIP box, Netgear Wireless Access Point, Netgear Print server connected to Epson Stylus 740.

As it's been a few months (and a couple of national releases) since I disconnected the RJ-45, I plugged it back a little while ago. If I start to have issues again, I'll take it back out.

(I know it doesn't have Dual Live Buffers but that really doesn't bother me all that much)


I've asked their techs about it many times over ... I can see where they sent it: circular file. :mad:

I hope that the coming change in ownership of DirecTV brings about some serious changes in the way they handle this device, quality control and technical support. They may be working on some of these issues and fix them in a future patch....they may not...DirecTV doesn't seem to acknowledge issues like mine in a knowledgebase or in their forums.


I've often asked the techs to check their knowledge base and while they might/might not acknowledge that the problem is out there, they won't indicate more than that. I find that frustrating as I'm a believer in having a documented knowledge base that is shared with all.

If some of you consider my evaluation unfair...remember it's MY evaluation of the HR-20s that I purchased and use. Your experience may be different for the better or worse.


I like seeing these kinds of posts because it shows I'm not the only one with issues ... again, if I had found these forums months ago, I may have saved myself a lot of frustration with the techs on the phone.

Something else I need to add to the CONS list: after a reboot, the program guide beyond the first several hours to one day is gone. Anytime my DirecTiVo reboots, the long term guide data was still there. I always worry that if a reboot occurs within a few hours of a Season Pass recording, the show won't record.

Overall, it's not a bad box; it still has bugs that need to be solved. I recall the techs telling me the HR-20 was rushed out to market with the expiring agreement with TiVo. Again, that's what *they* told me. :rolleyes:


:goodjob:
Centreville, VA, 20120

DirecTV Subscriber: since January 2000
NFL Sunday Ticket: since 2000 NFL Season
Hughes Series 2 DirecTiVo (modified): October 2003, connected to RCA 27" Standard
DirecTV HR-20 HD-DVR: October 2006, connected to LG 42" Widescreen HD LCD

#55 OFFLINE   DawgLink

DawgLink

    Woof Woof Woof

  • Registered
  • 1,542 posts
  • LocationWashington, DC
Joined: Nov 05, 2006

Posted 21 July 2007 - 08:38 PM

Some have horror stories, I have none

DVR has worked fine since Day 1




spam firewall