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The Heat Problem - A Rant

Discussion in 'ViP612/622/722/722K DVR Support Forum' started by phrelin, May 21, 2008.

  1. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

    Jan 18, 2007
    The well-known heat issue is being discussed on another thread in way that troubles me to the point I need to rant.

    I've been building computers for over 25 years. The one on which I'm typing this rant get's very hot, or it would if it weren't for the fans I have on it. If the computer didn't have the hard drives in it, it could probably fly (just joking). Yet, when I put two additional drives in it for a few days, it still started to overheat dispite the large always running fans. Had I wanted to keep those drives in there, I would have had to add another fan. Heat is a known problem associated with computers.

    Also for a considerable time, I have had component audio-video systems. Like many, I don't like looking at a/v components or wiring and have an old Kenwood a/v component cabinet that I built into a custom home theater space in my home. I have an HP small tower computer for a/v use located in another cabinet next to a rather large backup power supply.

    Until September of last year I received my television only through two 508 sd receiver/recorders stacked on top of each other inside the component cabinet.

    I never had a hint of a heat problem with any of that equipment including the HP computer.

    But I have a 722 now. Because of everything I read about the 622, I tore the back off the a/v component cabinet (reinforcing it structurally in another way). I did leave on the cabinet the glass door which has air flow space around all four sides. The 722 sits on a shelf by itself. The two components in the shelves below it are not normally on. For any component I have, there is more than enough air flow, except the 722.

    A week ago the 722 started overheating during a warm spell when the room it is located in was at about 83 degrees. I have now purchased and placed a laptop cooling fan under the 722 (USB powered, but I had to buy a 120v adaptor plug as I'm using the USB port). It appears to be reducing the temperature. But I've noticed that the unit still gets hotter than I want before its internal fan shifts to full speed and with the help of the external fan effectively cools it.

    Which leads me to my opinions.

    The 722 is an a/v component intended to sit in the average home attached to an HD tv and a surround sound system. While some electronic buffs might call it sleek and attractive, the average home decorator would call it an ugly black box that must be placed in a cabinet by the home owner along with the other a/v ugly black (or silver) boxes. This 722 should have been designed to be part of an a/v system because it's not a computer, it is an a/v component that uses computer technology.

    I'm now reading on various threads that the failure problems associated with 622/722 units may frequently be caused by the stupidity of the Dish customer who didn't realize he had to keep the unit in the refrigerator. Yeah, that's sarcasm. Because the truth is the 622/722 units have a serious design flaw.

    These units, containing some fine engineering, weren't designed from the ground up to be used within typical a/v system cabinents or this heat problem wouldn't exist. For us on this board, let's keep in mind that reasonable a/v use of these boxes is exactly that - reasonable use. Unfortunately, if you are reasonably using your 622/722 as an a/v component in an a/v component cabinet with other a/v components, it may overheat. You may have to use an external computer fan to keep it running. Or you may have to move it.

    Or as one post suggested, you should drill holes in your cabinet. (If you need, I can suggest a suitable drill bit to use on that antique armoire along with a reference for a good divorce lawyer.)

    But let's not blame this problem on the customer. The boxes have a design flaw.

    Oh, and as a side note, about every two months I have to pull my computer out, open it up and vacuum out the accumulated dust that starts to block the air flow. On the other hand, the Dish maintenance tech hasn't been out to do that on Dish's 722 yet....
  2. wje

    wje Godfather

    Mar 8, 2006
    New England
    I keep mine in an AV cabinet with a back, equipment over it, and only about 2" clearance on each side. My disk temps are fine, staying in the 110 deg. range. No overheating problems at all....

    but, it wasn't always this rosy. I used to have fairly high disk temps, and spent a lot of time fiddling around trying to figure out what the problem was. What I discovered, which might have some applicability to others, was that if there was less than about 5" of clearance above the box, an air circulation pattern would develop where the hot air coming out of the left side just went right over the top and was sucked back into the right side by the fan.

    My easy fix was to use a narrow piece of foam running front-to-back sitting on top of the box to block the circulation. Presto, temps went down by 10 degrees.
  3. phrelin

    phrelin Hall Of Fame DBSTalk Club

    Jan 18, 2007
    Thanks for the idea and for suffering through my rant.

    That's a problem I was trying to solve even with the open back and USB fan. When I monitored external case temperatures and checked air flows it was quite clear that just having "a tunnel" with sides and top and bottom, the internal fan was creating a recirculation pattern.
  4. Rob Glasser

    Rob Glasser Hall Of Fame Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

    Feb 22, 2005
    I used to have a similar setup to you but instead of an open back and closed front I left front open and had a closed back. In this setup I had an AVR, 2 722s, and a DVD player all in the cabinet. With everything in standby the 722's were just warm, but after an evening of watching TV they'd be very hot, but never had any issues because it.

    I wanted to be able to close the glass door, so I ended up cutting a hole behind my AVR and 2 722s and mounting a cool-vent-I system I picked up on ebay to suck in cool air from behind the cabinet and drilling a couple of 2" round holes in the ceiling of the cabinet, on the left side, and put a couple of ultra quiet PC fans connected to an AC adapter on top that sucks hot air out. Finally I put a couple of ultra quiet PC fans, on the same AC adapter, inside the cabinet. One to blow the cool air coming in across the 722's and another on the left side of the 722's that blows the hot air up and away from the 722's.

    With this configuration my average 722 temps have actually dropped with the door closed 24x7 vs no fans and the door open 24x7.
  5. HobbyTalk

    HobbyTalk Hall Of Fame

    Jul 14, 2007
    There are many pieces of AV equipment that have heat problems. A visit to the AVS forums will show it's not limited to the 622/722.

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