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HR20-700 HD channels problems

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by dinotheo, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. dinotheo

    dinotheo Godfather

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    Sep 21, 2006
    Hi all,
    I have been having some issues recently with an HR20-700. Recently it has lost the ability to display HD channels. If I go to the signal meter, all of my readings are good on all satellites. 86 being my lowest reading. With most in the 90's. (on the 103 and 99)
    It just displays a grey screen when I tune an HD channel. If I reboot it, the HD channels come back for a day or two and then the same problem occurs. So I just wrote it off to that receiver might be having hardware problems.
    That particular receiver is also the second farthest receiver (from my swim switch) that I have.
    So recently, I had an HR20-100 fail. It was working fine before the hard drive died (HD was flawless). DTV replaced it with an HR20-700. That location is the farthest from my switch. Well, two days later that "new" HR20-700 is having the same problems as my other HR20-700. Now I am starting to think that this may not be a coincidence as the HR20-100 that was there was fine.

    I just swapped one of the HR20-700's with an HR22. But it may take a few days for the problem to re-occur. I wanted to see if distance from the switch plays a role or if the problem follows the receiver. While I wait for a few days, I thought that I should pose this question to this forum.

    Has anyone run into anything like this?

    I find it odd that this problem is only affecting my HR20-700's. Nothing has changed on the switch or cabling side for well over a year and both of these locations were displaying HD without issues. (Especially the -100 that was replaced by a -700 from DTV).


    Thanks,
    Dino
     
  2. MysteryMan

    MysteryMan Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    Did you run a system test on the HR20-700?
     
  3. TomCat

    TomCat Broadcast Engineer

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    Distance to the switch (cable length) is rarely an issue; you should be able to go 125 ft without problems assuming good RG-6. If cable is long enough to show comparatively higher losses between SD and HD channels, you are already into the area where the DC loop resistance is preventing reliable switches (symptom: intermittent channels missing, both SD and HD). If you have SWM, levels are usually equalized regardless of the length, within reason.

    Without more to go on it could be either an alignment issue or a switch/cabling/BB filter issue (including the switch in the LNBF).

    Swapping cables or DVR positions can tell you a lot regarding health of the distribution; just remember to reboot so that if the cables get moved around the DVR can reorient itself to which cable is which (this is established or reestablished in the bootup).

    Losing just HD is a common sign of bad alignment. You must have at least one transponder on the HD sats (99 and 103) that is at least at 96-100 if you have LIL in your market, which you probably do, but poor alignment will still let SD channels through for the most part.

    So that is where to start if you are troubleshooting yourself. Try to narrow down what equipment is performing and what isn't, and try to narrow down what channels you get and which you don't. Swap cables, swap equipment, then reassess. Post back.
     
  4. MizzouTiger

    MizzouTiger Icon

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    Could it be a bad B-Band Converter?
     
  5. dinotheo

    dinotheo Godfather

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    Sep 21, 2006
    Folks,
    Sorry I forgot to mention. The diagnostics come up clean (ran them when they lose the HD channels). The only complaint from the diagnostic is that the phone line isn't plugged in.

    I also forgot to mention that I have 11 HDDVR receivers. None of the others are having problems. Only my 2 HR20-700s (I have no other HR20-700 receivers). This is why this problem seems odd to me. I can't imagine that cabling is a problem since the cables haven't been touched in years. And in the one location, the previous HR20-100 was working fine (until the hard drive died). When the -700 went in, the HD stopped working about a day or two afterwards.
    I've dealt with dish alignment issues in the past. And that was obvious to diagnose as the signals on the 103 and 99 sats were low. That isn't the case here.
    B-Bands are not the problem as these are connected to swim.

    Thanks,
    Dino
     
  6. inkahauts

    inkahauts Well-Known Member

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    I think we need more info to help. Can you describe or explain exactly how your entire system is wired up?
     
  7. dinotheo

    dinotheo Godfather

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    Sep 21, 2006
    I have a swm16 and wb616 running in parallel. I split every incoming coax from the dish and run each output from each split to both the swm16 and wb616. I diplex in OTA after the swm16. 8 of my HDDVRs are connected to the swm switch and 3 are connected to the WB616.
    At each swm connected receiver I diplex out the OTA. The affected receivers are both swm connected.

    One other thing I forgot to mention, this problem affects only satellite HD channels. OTA work fine.

    Thanks,
    Dino
     
  8. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    While I don't know why you're having problems with "just HD", you have loaded the SWiM-16 to the max. This means you're using the highest SWiM channels on both legs.
    It might be worth looking at the SWM screen [same menu as the SAT levels] and check what the nine channels show.
    Since all the SWiM channels are being used, you'll need to have every receiver on signal screen, so each receiver frees up the SWiM channel they're using. If you don't, then you'll read zeros for the channels being used by other receivers.
     
  9. dinotheo

    dinotheo Godfather

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    Sep 21, 2006
    Thank. I'll wait for it to fail again and then I will go into the swm signal meter to see the signal levels. Since it is currently working, I don't know that checking now will give me any info. Plus I don't recall which receivers are on swm16 and which are on wb616, so I'd have to go to all 11 and get to that signal meter. I know that I can check for b-bands to see if they are on swm or not, but many of my receivers are hidden in closets, in equipment racks, etc...so it would not be feasible for me to get up to them to check for the b-bands.


    Thanks,
    Dino
     
  10. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    While I do understand doing the whole thing could be a pain, it might be worth "just" checking the one with problems.
    If it is using the highest channels, then you'll get a reading for on #1 because it's the guide and then 8 & 9, which would show if it's good or weak.
    What type/size of splitters do you have and "about" how long is the coax to this receiver?
     
  11. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    If this helps, I have eight 20-700s and none of them has this problem. Why didn't you get another SWiM to replace the Zinwell switch? I have 12 HRs on two SWiM 16s and have no problems.

    If you put those 20-700s on, say, the 22-100 coax feeds, do you still see those problems?

    Rich
     
  12. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Not that this would affect the problem here, but I wonder why the WB616 isn't just being run off the SWiM-16 "legacy" ports, and skip the loss of the splitting of the feeds from the dish, like your second SWiM-16 is.
     
  13. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    DIY installation perhaps? Seemed kinda strange when I saw the two mixed on one system.

    Rich
     
  14. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    If I had to be paying for it, I'd have still used the old switch too because "it works". Maybe the splitters were there from having 2 WB616s before. You did yours with two dishes didn't you?
     
  15. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Had two dishes before the DECA install. Now I have one.

    Rich
     
  16. dinotheo

    dinotheo Godfather

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    You nailed it. I had 2 WB616's before. I swapped in a swm8 for a wb616 a couple of years back and swapped out the swm8 for a swm16 last year. Back then I had to split and run in parallel rather than hang the wb616 off of the swm because I was also using a separate dish at 95. (international) DTV has since dropped those international channels....so come to think of it, I should be able to quickly re-route my setup to have the swm16 run straight from the dish and then feed the wb616 from the legacy ports. I didn't previously change the cabling because my setup has been running just fine for a while so I didn't want to mess with it.

    Also, my DTV home run box is behind the screen of my dedicated HT. It is a permanent screen so I have to remove it to get to the box. So, I get a little lazy if I have to get to it. Maybe a Saturday afternoon project is needed today.

    Thanks,
    Dino
     
  17. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    So, how did you make out? Too lazy? I suffer from laziness too. Not a horrible affliction....:lol:

    Rich
     
  18. inkahauts

    inkahauts Well-Known Member

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    You still have the swim 8? If so, I'd chain that off the swim 16. Get rid of all diplexing, and simply use all the second lines to feed the ota so they are all kept separate. Let's you keep everything more isolated. Plus sets you up for deca someday.
     
  19. dinotheo

    dinotheo Godfather

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    Sep 21, 2006
    I did actually get around to it. Took me much longer than I would have liked. I had the coax connectors on pretty tight.

    So far so good, but it has only been about a day.


    I also do still have the swim8. I've been tossing around the idea of replacing the WB616 with it. Chalk that up to, I haven't had time to get around to it. Darn kids. :)
     
  20. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Be really careful with those tight coax connectors. At the base of the coax barrels on the back of the HRs there is what passes for D*'s idea of a lock nut. If that really thin nut is loose and the connection is tight, the barrel will turn and the delicate connector inside the box will break and you'll have to replace the HR. Always best to tighten up that "lock nut" before you put a wrench to the coax connector. And then use two wrenches, one on the lock nut and one on the connector. "Lock nut". Amazing what some companies will do to save a few cents.

    I'd catch that idea you've been tossing around and do it. First, I'd swap it for a SWiM 16. Then I'd have D* enable MRV. You're missing something really good.

    Rich
     

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