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HR2x power consumption

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by redwings_fan, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. Mar 10, 2009 #21 of 110
    mcbeevee

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    If the XM music channels do not buffer, does that mean you would use less power (and have less wear on the drive) by switching to a XM channel before powering off? Of course, this would only apply until the next recording starts.

    :)
     
  2. Mar 10, 2009 #22 of 110
    cartrivision

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    From actual measurements I have taken, there is nowhere near a 6 watt difference between standby and on modes. As I recall, it was about a 1 watt difference, if that. Very little is turned off in standby mode, just a few LEDs and the video outputs.
     
  3. Mar 10, 2009 #23 of 110
    cartrivision

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    No, because the disk is always powered up and spinning. Furthermore, switching to an XM channel is no guarantee that the second tuner is not still being buffered. As has been discussed in various DLB threads, the HR2x DVRs are often maintaining a live buffer of both tuners (or just the background tuner if the foreground is tuned to an XM channel) even there is no "DLB capability" that lets you switch between both live buffers.
     
  4. Mar 10, 2009 #24 of 110
    dreadlk

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    Who the hell gives a crap if the DVR uses $10 or $20 a year!!
    Im paying $1200 a year on subscription, that $10 is the least of my problems. If you wanna be super green go out and buy a $1500 solar panel system, that small system can run it for free and make you a model citizen without the rest of us having to hear about it.
     
  5. Mar 10, 2009 #25 of 110
    DarinC

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    Unless you live someplace where you have no summer air conditioning costs, it doesn't work out that way. In the heating season, heating your home with waste heat from the DVR would be heat at the equivalent efficiency of electric resistance heat, which is generally somewhat expensive. So if you spend $1 to operate the DVR, the heat it puts out is less than what that same $1 would give you with natural gas or an electric heat pump. So operating the DVR in the winter isn't "free" UNLESS you have electric resistance heat, or something even more costly (like wood heat fueled by duraflames from 7-11). And in the summer time, for every $1 you spend to power your DVR, you might have to spend an additional $0.30-0.50 in air conditioning costs to remove that heat. And at least around here, our electric rates are about twice as high in the summer as they are in the winter. So the extra load on the a/c is much more costly than any savings on the heat bill in the winter.
     
  6. Mar 10, 2009 #26 of 110
    rudeney

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    Here's my math: Let's go with a nominal 35 watts consumption. Time 24 hours in a day is 840 watt-hours per day. Times 30 days in a month is 25,200 watt-hours per month, or 25.2kWh per month. At $0.10 per kWh, that's $2.52 per month to operate the DVR. I have five of them so that's over $12/month. It's not a lot, but it is a waste of money and energy. I do wish that at the very least these devices could be program to stop buffering and power down the hard drives when they are in standby and there are no recordings scheduled. Even if it cut the overall energy usage by only 25%, it would welcome.
     
  7. Mar 10, 2009 #27 of 110
    DarinC

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    I think at the very least, they should at least be smart enough to power down the internal drive if an external is attached. :rolleyes:
     
  8. Mar 10, 2009 #28 of 110
    billsharpe

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    If you got rid of four of those five DVR's you'd save roughly ten bucks a month in the electric bill plus $20 in monthly lease fees. Just a thought :sure:
     
  9. Mar 10, 2009 #29 of 110
    EricJRW

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    It's not the planet that needs saving, it's the animals on the planet (including us homo sapiens)... Once we are gone, the planet will take care of itself... May take a few million years, but it will right itself.

    OK, that being said, it does seem reasonable that there could be a user-selectable mode to conserve power.

    Why can't we not buffer? I've had plenty of devices that know how to wake up a few minutes/seconds before a scheduled event.

    I think the $10 / year (or pick your favorite number) times the number of DVRs always plugged in is a telling number. It's not really about the dollars, rather the energy being saved... Didn't we just go through the "kids unplugging power bricks" wave (though I got to say, if there is no load on the brick, is it really using that much power? But then again, multiplied by bricks in the wall <--- ode to Pink Floyd, it could be a lot).

    Anyway, +1 for a green mode from me.
     
  10. Mar 10, 2009 #30 of 110
    rudeney

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    But then I'd have four TV's without D*! :eek2:
     
  11. Mar 10, 2009 #31 of 110
    Tom Robertson

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    Long cables doesn't trump electric usage? :)

    I hear you, please don't take too much from my jocularity.

    Some tricky bits to consider:
    1) There are over 1,800 stations broadcasting in the US, with DIRECTV needing to carry all the guide data for all of them that are carried on DIRECTV in SD or HD or digital OTA. Many times that means carrying guide data multiple times for multiple sub-channels. At some point, it will be all stations.

    So for the moment, lets say the total number of guide channels is 4,000 (2*1800, plus 400 nationals) for simplicity. And the guide goes out 14 days.

    And each guide entry is fairly long xml by the time you get all the title, ratings (with detail), actors, directors, etc.

    All that adds up and isn't easily stored entirely in memory. (Not all 14 days--plus the incoming data.)

    So the disk has to spin to store and update databases--at least every so often. (Big key, that last bit...) :)

    And at least one LNB needs to stay hot all the time.

    Now, could DIRECTV find a way to spin the disk less than "all the time"? And turn off some of the LNBs and tuners?

    Yes. I know they are smart enough to find a way to make it happen. It might be very difficult.

    2) But I think they have a list of stability and features that they want much more first.

    Once they have all that in place, they can focus on greening.

    Now, another approach you can take, coming very soon, will be to replace some or more of your HR2x with H21/22/23 that don't have a disk. Let them be clients from the HR2x(s) that remain. That will reduce your electricity significantly and even let you turn off the receivers at will with an external power switch.

    So, in a way, DIRECTV is also attacking the issue.

    Cheers,
    Tom
     
  12. Mar 10, 2009 #32 of 110
    BattleZone

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    Again, what happens when one of the networks changes a show schedule a few hours before a show starts? Today, the DVR would get the updated guide data and adjust, as many people have actually seen happen. But if the DVR was powered down, it would miss those changes and you would lose recordings. Inevitably, customers wouldn't understand that they were making this compromise when they enabled "green mode" and would raise all kinds of hell with DirecTV for "including such a stupid feature!"

    Anyway, as I pointed out before, a DVR is a luxury item, and has already been designed to reduce its power consumption to near its practical limit, which is around half the power needed to run an average (i.e., 75W) lightbulb.

    Your time and energy, not to mention money, would almost certainly be better spent addressing the much larger users of energy in your home. Frige/freezer, A/C, heater, electric stove/oven, lights, and TVs all use far more power than your DVRs. If $2.50/month, or even $10/month is too much money to spend on the DVR, then you're probably living above your means in the first place.
     
  13. Mar 10, 2009 #33 of 110
    dennisj00

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    Lots of good arguments and examples, but be sure that EVERY unneeded light bulb (driveway gas lights included!) in your house are OFF before you worry about the DVR using excess energy. ONE 60 watt light bulb uses almost twice the DVR.

    IIP above is right, there are much bigger energy wasters in the average house. . . if your heat pump, central air or refrigerator / freezer is over 10 years old, you're wasting MUCH more energy.
     
  14. Mar 10, 2009 #34 of 110
    rudeney

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    Trust me, I have enough cabling in the house already! :)

    Not that it helps with today's current IRD's, but a GB or two of flash memory would probably handle that.

    Yeah, but my PI can handle that.

    Oh, don't get me wrong, I'm not a "green freak", and in fact I'm not really even concerned about the money, but it is wasteful and I hate to waste anything.


    Yes, that does sound promising! :)
     
  15. Mar 10, 2009 #35 of 110
    rudeney

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    OK, guilty as charged! I have a whole-house light control system and I have lights come on automatically, including several hundred watts of outdoor landscape lighting. I did replace my gas coach light with an electric conversion. It saved me about $30 per month on the gas bill!
     
  16. Mar 10, 2009 #36 of 110
    David MacLeod

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    anyone remember the Dennis Leary song "I'm a A__hole?"
    deals with lot of environmental issues
     
  17. Mar 10, 2009 #37 of 110
    dennisj00

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    Great example! Even though it's pretty, I've never understood landscape lighting . . .
     
  18. Mar 10, 2009 #38 of 110
    rudeney

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    I guess when it comes down to it, it is for looks. Most of my lights are on my fence. I do have two up-lights on some trees. Part of the lighting is also on our screened porch, and we do use it quite a bit. I'm sue I could save some money by turning it off when we aren't out there, but it sure is nice to see it through the windows. It makes the yard seem more inviting and safe. The good news is that no one ever "forgets" to turn it off. The computer does that at 10:45pm each night.
     
  19. Mar 10, 2009 #39 of 110
    dennisj00

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    Not so bad, only 3 or so hours a night. . . if all the resorts / developments / houses did that it would reduce consumption quite a bit. But so many are on all night - for no one to see. Or at least so few to see. . .
     
  20. Mar 10, 2009 #40 of 110
    gitarzan

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    If all set-top boxes sold in the U.S. met the ENERGY STAR specification, the savings in energy costs will grow to about $2 billion each year and greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced by the equivalent of greenhouse gas emissions from about 2.5 million vehicles - energystar.gov

    Only DirecTV and AT&T have set top boxes that are energy star certified. Great job DirecTV.

    The Dish VIP 622 HD DVR uses more electricity than many full size kitchen refridgerators. I've tested with a watt meter for a 30 day period.

    3 or 4 HD DVR's in a house in a state with high electricity cost will easily exceed $100 per year.
     

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