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AM21 questions - power source, location...

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by Bluto17, Jan 13, 2009.

  1. Bluto17

    Bluto17 Legend

    Jan 31, 2007
    Hi all,

    I've been forced to make the AM21 plunge, since I had to replace an HR20 with an HR22. It should be here laster this week. This triggered a few questions:

    1. How is the AM21 powered? Does it have its own AC plug, or is it powered via the USB connection? (I *think* it connects to the HR22 via the USB, but correct me on that if I'm wrong...)

    2. Do I have to stack the AM21 on the HR22, or can I place it elsewhere? I have a vertical space issue where the HR22 is located. If I do place it elsewhere, are there additional (longer) cables I need to purchase?

    3. Does the AM21 require line of site with the D* remote in IR mode? Or can I bury the AM21 in a cabinet somewhere?

    Thanks for your help.
  2. Mike Bertelson

    Mike Bertelson 6EQUJ5 WOW! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Jan 24, 2007
    The AM21 connects to the HR2x's USB port but power comes from the wall outlet.

    For power the AM21 plugs into the wall and the HR2x plugs into the AM21.

    I have my AM21 stacked in between a HR23 and a HR21. It's all in a closed cabinet.

    Longer cables I think would be on you.

    The remote works on the the HR2x not the AM21. The receiver treats the AM21 as another tuner.

  3. Bluto17

    Bluto17 Legend

    Jan 31, 2007
    Thanks, Mike. You covered them all.
  4. Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

    Jun 18, 2006
    Moving this to the HD DVR Forum.
  5. turls

    turls Legend

    Jul 8, 2006
    I have a full rack and will not be able to put the AM21 anywhere near the DVR/HMC, in fact it will be a good 80-90 feet away in another room.

    Anybody done this?

    Any reason I can't use an extender/converter to take USB to Cat5e and make this work?
  6. carl6

    carl6 Moderator Staff Member DBSTalk Club

    Nov 15, 2005
    Seattle, WA
    I have never heard of anyone using an AM21 remoted from the receiver it is associated with. I have no idea if it will work. Please let us know what you find out.
  7. CCarncross

    CCarncross Hall Of Fame

    Jul 19, 2005
    WHen using an AM21, it plugs into the wall for power, but the receiver is plugged in to power through the AM21, so it needs to be close enough to use the power cable. Also there is a USB connection between the two. Maybe you can rig a way to get the power and usb hooked up but I would exhaust every option to mate receiver and the AM21 together within a few feet to alleviate any issues. To the best of my knowledge, USB does not work over those distances, but there may be an extender solution out there that will work for that distance.
  8. moghedien

    moghedien Legend

    Dec 3, 2007
    There are two cables that connect the AM21 and H/HR 21-24; the USB cable you mentioned and the power cord. In a traditional setup, you disconnect the power cord from the H/HR unit and plug it into the AM21, then plug in the power cord that originates from the AM21. You would probably need a second power cord in your proposed setup...
  9. mnassour

    mnassour Icon

    Apr 23, 2002
    We may also want to remember that in the computer world, USB connections are usually not long at all, IIRC the 2.0 spec limits them to about 16 feet (5 meters). Whether this applies to the AM21n, well, I'd bet it does.

    As for taking it co Cat5e, all you can do is try an extender BEFORE the installation over that length of cable and see what happens.
  10. kaminar

    kaminar Mentor

    Mar 25, 2012
    mnassour is correct about USB spec limits and extender..

    This might help:

    USB 2.0 Extender Cable (up to 82ft -- product ID 7644) >>

    Also, http://amazon.com has various products, good to read reviews..search the following >>

    usb 2 to cat5

    usb 2 to ethernet

    Good luck!


    PS: the monoprice item is not to be confused with 150ft USB extender (only for USB 1 and 1.1), which is used primarily for keyboards (low voltage)
  11. turls

    turls Legend

    Jul 8, 2006
    Thanks guys! I have an option that I am going to try that keeps it closer to the main unit. Otherwise, I'll have to try the options you suggest.

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