Ok, just got a HR20-100 installed......

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by amahdi, Jan 31, 2008.

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  1. amahdi

    amahdi Legend

    Sep 30, 2002
    Yesterday the installer hooked up my HR20. Was there for several hours and a few issues are still pending. Would appreciate anybody's help as I am experiencing some problems.

    Scenario:The installer hooked the HR20 to my 47" Philips HDTV. He ran the 2 satellite wires to the HR20 (there is some sort of adapter that that wires go into before going into the HR20). I also have a Hughes TIVO receiver in my other room (Non-HD).

    1) For some reason when I switch channels – some channels don’t come and the message says (can’t remember the exact wording) “Searching for signal in Satellite tuner 2 (771)” and there is a blank screen. However other channels come fine. Then, some of the same channels are heavily pixilated – they freeze and you can’t even see the screen. This happens a lot on channels 70,71, etc and other regualr channels as well. Then at times the channels are fine. Weird thing was that my Hughes receiver in the other room (non-HD) was getting the same signal for the same satellite but was working fine. The installer changed the wiring, changed that adapter thingie but nothing worked. He said he is going to come tonight with a new receiver. My question was what is causing the problem. We tried to isolate it but couldn’t. Hopefully with the receiver change it does the trick.

    2) Do all the HD Channels broadcast all programs in HD or is it the one’s that have “HD” next to them. For eg, I was watching channel 7 (WABC) which is in HD but some programs such as OPRAH didn’t have HD next to it. Same thing with CNNHD – is it always in HD or only some programs. Sometimes I just feel that the quality of the picture isn’t that amazing as I had thought.

    3) Does HD quality depend on the signal strength. I get signal strength between 70-90 so that should be ok I guess. Only reason I ask is sometimes, for example, while watching a College Basketball game on ESPN that was in HD – it really wasn’t that great quality picture. Does getting a better HDMI cable make it better?

    4) The Guide doesn’t even show programs after Feb 4th – is that normal?

    5) The installer accidentally removed my old Direcv Dish instead of just adding the new HD dish and this basically screwed me over because with the old dish I was getting “International” channels. Now I can’t. When I called Cust svc they said that the installer could have put a bipolar connection. He will be coming tonight so I will tell him re-install the old dish as well. Hopefully he won’t charge me.

    I will probably have more questions but would appreciate your help in this.

    Thanks in advance!
  2. say-what

    say-what Active Member

    Dec 14, 2006
    New Orleans
    1) this could be a dish allignment issue, you mention that signals are between 70-90, but you need to be more specific. Go into the Sat menu and check signal strength on 103 (c) - might be "b" in the national release - and report back the readings for each transponder as set on the screen

    2) Just because a station broadcasts in HD that doesn't mean all the programming is in HD - meaning 16:9 format. Some of the shows were not recorded in HD and some are still recorded in the old 4:3 format

    3) With HD, you either get a viable signal or not - as long as the unit is able to receive a strong enough signal, you won't notice any difference between the low and high end. Now if the signal is too low, the unit won't be able to decode it and you're going to lose your picture and/or suffer severe macroblocking

    4) The guide takes several days to fully populate. Within 24 hours you will have the bulk of the data, but it can take longer to get the full 12-14 days for all channels.

    5) You can't use the old hardware for the new 5lnb dish, but if you used a secondary dish for International channels, that would need to be connected via a multiswitch.
  3. mjones73

    mjones73 Icon

    Jun 20, 2006
    1) Swap the cables and BBCs coming into the DVR, see if the problem stays on tuner 2. If it does, it's a bad tuner in the DVR. You can verify this by going into the signal strength link off of the main signal meter page, it gives you signal strength on each tuner, check the various sat transponders, I had issues with my first HR20-100 where tuner 2 was always too low on the 110 sat so none of the older MPEG2 HD channels would show on it.

    2) Not all programming on HD channels is HD, if it's got sidebars on it, that's a good indication it's SD upconverted.

    3) Long as you have a good enough signal to lock on, the PQ should always be the same. A different HDMI cable won't make a difference either. Was the game actually in HD?

    4) It will show two weeks out once it's fully populated, that can take a couple days after first activation.

    5) Not sure
  4. amahdi

    amahdi Legend

    Sep 30, 2002
    Thanks for all your advice. The installer is coming back tonight and I will ask him to change the receiver. I must say Directv receivers are really faulty judging from other posts that have similar problems.

    By the way - is "BBC" that adapter that goes into the Satellite receiver in each tuner? What does it stand for. Thanks.
  5. Michael D'Angelo

    Michael D'Angelo Lifetime Achiever

    Oct 20, 2006

    BBC-Broad Band Converter
  6. Feb 1, 2008 #6 of 13

    amahdi Legend

    Sep 30, 2002
    Thanks for all your help. The installer came yesterday and changed the receiver (I got a black HR21-700) - it works perfectly so far. Old receiver was the problem.

    Two questions:

    1) How do you activate 30 second "SKIP" instead of "SLIP"

    2) I put my HD format in 1080i stretch. Is there a format which will automatically make non-HD programming come on the screen without the bars on the sides. I have to always press format and then choose 420 crop and then it changes to full screen.

    Thanks again...
  7. Feb 1, 2008 #7 of 13

    BattleScott Hall Of Fame

    Aug 28, 2006
    MENU>>SEARCH...>>KEYWORD>>30SKIP>>ALL>>DONE will toggle to skip mode.
    Same sequence with 30SLIP will toggle back.

    The 'Stretch' and 'Crop' settings will only apply to SD channels. The pillar bars are part of the image on the HD channel so the stretch and crop do not apply. You have to use the TVs aspect control for them.

    HOWEVER, I MUST WARN YOU: This thread is now bound to be hi-jacked and turned into another "why would anyone want to???" argument:new_cussi
  8. Feb 2, 2008 #8 of 13

    amahdi Legend

    Sep 30, 2002
    I tried the "Menu, Search, Keyword, 30SKIP, ALL, DONE" but its still doing Slip. Is there anything wrong that Im doing.

    Also regerading this picture on the screen - reason I ask is if I am watching a show on ABC that is NOT in HD - do I have to press the format button everytime to get the "full screen" with no side bars. I dont like the side bars. I just want a format that automatcially chooses the resolution and adjusts whenever I switch channels and if i goto a non-HD channel - I dont want to see the side bars....
  9. Feb 2, 2008 #9 of 13

    jgrade Godfather

    Sep 30, 2006
    If the program is sent with sidebars, like ESPN does frequently, then you can't do anything about it, since technically they are sending a 16x9 picture that they are cropping. Some of the local channels do that too. You have no options here.

    If you have the setting on the HR-20 to stretch and the picture still looks 4x3 then the provider is sending you a full screen picture but adding the bars prior.

    I think I am repeating myself, but it may not be clear.

    Just try ESPN. You will see the sidebars are marked ESPN. This is a great way to know that the provider is sending the bars not the HR-20.
  10. dwlevy

    dwlevy Mentor

    Sep 4, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    You want to set your HR20 to "Native" resolution mode. Go to "System Setup">"HDTV" and on the "Video" Tab/screen the first option is "Native". Turn it on.
  11. DrummerBoy523

    DrummerBoy523 Godfather

    Jan 9, 2007
    Franklin, TN
    In the HDTV menu, set the format to STRETCH.
  12. BattleScott

    BattleScott Hall Of Fame

    Aug 28, 2006
    I believe what they are after is a setting that will stretch or zoom an HD Channel when 4:3 programming is being shown. This is not possible as the Pillar bars are being broadcast as part of the image. They are not being put there by the receiver (you can demonstate this by changing the pillar bar color in the HR setup from black to another color, it has no effect). The HRxx does not know that the image that is being received is a 4:3 image with pillar bars, it only sees a full 16:9 image and displays it as such without any image transformation.
  13. bwaldron

    bwaldron Impossible Dreamer

    Oct 24, 2005
    No options? This may not be true. Many recent HDTVs are able to use their aspect/stretch modes on HD channels as well. So one can stretch the 4:3 picture within the 16:9 frame to get rid of the pillars, if that is what they desire.
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