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Are any receivers responsive?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by stroh, Nov 16, 2012.

  1. Dec 4, 2012 #281 of 545
    JeffBowser

    JeffBowser blah blah blah

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    I've already derailed this thread enough, and seen enough threads on this subject to go down this path here (and again), but thanks.:)

    :lol:
     
  2. Dec 4, 2012 #282 of 545
    harsh

    harsh Beware the Attack Basset

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    Sloppy code is not something to aspire to nor facilitate/encourage in any way.

    Assuming that CPU power will fix everything was what hampered Pee Cees and Macs from doing serious tasks (like simulation and 3D modeling) until dedicated display engines came on the scene.

    Channel changing shouldn't require a lot of horsepower, but if the DVR is focusing on other things, it may take a while; especially when its focus doesn't prioritize user input.
     
  3. Dec 5, 2012 #283 of 545
    bobcamp1

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    It's just as fast with FIOS's MPEG4 channels. MPEG2 vs. MPEG4 has nothing to do with channel changing speeds. The FPGA(s) in the chipset should be the device(s) performing the video decoding. That leaves the on-board CPU to handle other things, like processing remote control commands and guide data.
     
  4. Dec 5, 2012 #284 of 545
    veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    since I don't have FIOS, I can't compare, but I can with my AM21 and it's faster with MPEG-2
     
  5. Dec 6, 2012 #285 of 545
    bobcamp1

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    OK, then in a properly designed box, it shouldn't matter at all whether it's MPEG2 vs. MPEG4. The video decoding should be handled by an FPGA or two within the chipset, leaving the on-board CPU free to perform other tasks. Plus now you've got the AM21 involved in your test, so it's not really the same test. You can compare D* with a Series 3 Tivo box if you want -- that's MPEG4 and the channels change really fast (less than a second) with native off using the same chipset as an HR22.

    Tivo worked really hard to develop the code and the tools necessary to use Linux in their boxes, as Linux doesn't come with any of the necessary embedded tools (Linux sucks, especially as an embedded OS).

    http://www.tivo.com/opensource/linux/index.html

    Google has done the same with Android. They've both made dozens of kernel modifications as well. Where's D*'s source code and tools? There are also all kinds of tricks you need to use to get Linux to work in an embedded application, and embedded programming itself is very different from PC programming.

    I'd bet that you could take the existing D* boxes and have a team of true embedded software engineers completely rewrite the software so that it's much faster yet keeps all the existing functions. But that would cost a lot of money, so that's not happening.
     
  6. Dec 6, 2012 #286 of 545
    veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Waiting 6+ sec for a resolution change shouldn't happen.
    I still question channel changes of < 500ms, but that's because my TV can't.
     
  7. Dec 6, 2012 #287 of 545
    Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Until D* start losing subs en masse, they're not gonna change the way they do business. There is a method to their madness.

    Rich
     
  8. Dec 6, 2012 #288 of 545
    veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Some might see this as: There is madness to their method.
     
  9. Dec 6, 2012 #289 of 545
    Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Yeah, there is that. Not gonna change while they're on top. Too many satisfied lemmings (like me). Fast enough for me, their HRs are.

    Rich
     
  10. Dec 6, 2012 #290 of 545
    JeffBowser

    JeffBowser blah blah blah

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    I have to believe there are some good engineers deep in a basement somewhere who are deeply embarrassed by the output.
     
  11. Dec 6, 2012 #291 of 545
    tigerwillow1

    tigerwillow1 Legend

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    You're probably correct. During my years as a low-level and embedded programmer there were many times when the engineers said "it's not finished yet", and the management said "ship it". There was often a crisis project a few months later to fix the problems, usually bug fixes and performance enhancements, at a higher cost than just doing it right the first time. When hardware isn't finished, it looks like it isn't finished. With software, you copy it onto a disk and put a pretty label on it while the ugliness inside is invisible to the eye.

    From the marketing and management perspective, if you get your product out too late, somebody else will beat you and capture market share. But if you push out a bad product too early and get a bad reputation attached to it, it's toast. Does D* get more customers with a snappy DVR that doesn't do much else, or a dog-slow DVR that does a dozen other things? Only the Marketing geniuses can answer that. For me, if the poor performance pushes me over the cliff to E*, I won't be back unless E* screws something up even worse.
     
  12. Dec 8, 2012 #292 of 545
    pappasbike

    pappasbike Godfather

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    Just got an HR34 a few days ago. It's on the current software release. It replaced one of my two dvrs, both HR21s. The remaining 21 is in another room connected with the whole home service but rarely watched on that tv.

    I can't speak for the other DTV dvrs but the 21 that got replaced was one of the slowest, most aggravating piece of equipment I've ever used. It reminded me of when I first got a computer and was on a dial up internet service. The new 34, and granted it's only been a few days, is far faster in almost every function than the 21. Actually that aspect alone is almost worth the price I paid.
     
  13. Dec 8, 2012 #293 of 545
    lparsons21

    lparsons21 Hall Of Fame

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    The HR21 I used to have was the sole reason I switched to E* a couple years ago. The price, channels, picture quality, all of those other things that D* does at least somewhat better were overshadowed by the oft occurring urge to throw the remote through the plate glass window! :)

    When I came back to D*, I had a bit of a hassle with them and ended up at the office of the president. I was adamant that I would get 2 HR24s for free, and only HR24s. That's what I got and overall have been pleased.

    That said, there are times the HR24-500s I have decide to get sluggish, but generally a quick switch to channel 1 for 30 seconds or more cures most of that.

    If I had to get HR21s again, I wouldn't be with D* long enough for them to get them shipped to me.
     
  14. UhClem

    UhClem Cool Member

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    As it should be!! (All else being equal [see bottom])
    Before anything can be displayed, from an MPEG-2 or -4 stream/transmission, the decoder must sync up by waiting for an I-frame (a full-field Initial frame at the beginning of a [full] GOP [ie, Group Of Pictures]). For satellite transmissions (where bandwidth efficiency translates to multi-megabucks), MPEG-4 can, and will, utilize a longer GOP than MPEG-2. Therefore, on average, the sync-up time will be longer.

    ---- bottom ----
    A fair mpeg-2 to -4 timing comparison must be based on a (roughly) similar a/v sequence at the same resolution. Does the AM21 receive any HD signals using MPEG-2? (Obviously, it does get MPEG-4 HDs)

    --UhClem
     
  15. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    The AM21 is an OTA tuner for the receivers, so it only gets MPEG-2.
     
  16. Mike Greer

    Mike Greer Hall Of Fame

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    An update - I received the update to 0x062C on the morning of November 28th and that obviously restarted my receivers. Yesterday December 9th I had to once again restart the HR24-500 I use the most.

    It started doing its usual thing - push a button and nothing happens... Push it again nothing happens.. Then after some minutes it catches up and acts on at least some of the button pushes.

    In this case I walked in and my wife said 'Check this out...' and hit the REW button to show me. Nothing happened - just kept on playing live TV. She hit it again and nothing happened. I then took the remote and hit record then tried to make it do anything - nothing worked it just kept playing live TV. I figured it was going to catch up just as it has in the past... and it did about 5 minutes later. It started to rewind then it started to record then it came up the playlist and moved down the list a couple of lines. Finally everything was back to normal.

    After that I figured it was a good time to try to do the channel 1 trick to see if it would work the same as if I restarted. I put it on channel 1 for a little over a minute to be sure.

    Later in the day the same thing happened. I tried to play a recording and it wouldn't respond to the remote. Same as usual.... Except this time my son was playing a recording from the troubled receiver on another receiver and then a message came up saying that the bedroom receiver had been removed from the network and playback was no long possible. So apparently when it stops responding it also drops off the network or at least stops responding to the other receivers.

    I just waited a few minutes and it recovered - never misses a beat on what it is doing then responds to the remote command from 4 or 5 minutes earlier and back to normal. Normal except that if I don't restart it the trouble will return soon. Sometimes 30 minutes later sometimes a couple of hours but it always does it again.

    Apparently whatever is happening is not fixed by going to channel 1 in my case. After restarting yesterday all is well.

    I'm sure that if I don't restart it every week or so the problem will come up again. It has never done this except for 8, 9 ,10 sometimes 12 days after a restart.

    So - I guess I'm back to restarting once a week just keep the receivers working.

    I could just tell customer service the thing is dead and they'd send me a replacement. Trouble is what will the replacement be and I'll have to give up a bunch of unwatched programs just on the gamble that what they send 'may' fix the problem. Hell, with my luck, I'll probably get one of my old HR22s back!

    I think I'll just set up the series recordings on the other receivers and slowing get this down to no unwatched recordings. Then I'll decide if I call and give them the 'it just won't power up' line or wait until some future version of software fixes it. Can you imagine trying to explain what happens to a CSR? I'd rather tear off a fingernail with rusty pliers or just dump DirecTV than go through the torture sessions of having to convince them there is a problem. If they send a tech they'll restart the receivers and all will be well for 9 or 10 days and then I'll be back to square one.
     
  17. Richierich

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    Rebooting once a week can't be a bad thing and can't hurt anything unless you are Recording something. :)
     
  18. TMan

    TMan Legend

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    What is the channel 1 trick?
     
  19. hasan

    hasan Well-Known Member

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    Tune "live" to channel 1. Let it sit there 30 seconds (or more, but 30 should do). This is said to clear up sluggishness, somewhat. I have tried it...it usually helps on my HR20-700, HR21-100.
     
  20. Mike Greer

    Mike Greer Hall Of Fame

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    Yep - except that it is a pain in the a$$!

    I've been restarting on Sundays but timing is always an issue - especially because it takes soooooooo long to restart.
     

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