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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Now that a few folks who repeatedly complain about their problems have almost succeeded in making those of us with no problems with the HR20 feel guilty, I have been spending some time to try and help "diagnose" the potential source(s).

Having about 20 years experience in working in the software & hardware world, I know that pinning down a performance or problem is not an easy or quick process most of the time - but here are some thoughts.

Facts:

1) Most people are running the exact same HR20 box
2) Most folks are running with the same/current firmware version
3) Most folks are receiving the same D*TV programming (or optional programming in the case of NFL Sunday Ticket)

Variables:

1) Dish installations - Some have 3 LNBs, some have 5LNBs, signal strengths vary, location of the Dish (roof, pole, etc.) and cables connecting the dish vary, as well as proper grounding
2) Coax connectivity and corresponding multiswitches - I've heard from installers that some folks are still using R59U instead of R6U sat coax throughout their house, and numerous defective coax end connectors have resolved problems as well
3) Audio/video equipment - variables include optical, HDMI, DVI, and other connectivity
4) Connectivity/conversion switching - HDMI to DVI cables or through DVI switch, Component via multi-port switch, etc.
5) Projection/TV set connectivity - various versions of HDMI connections and HD presentation units/sets, as well as DVI or component connectivity
6) End user setup/configurations vary - Dolby on / Dolby off, 10880i or 720p HD, etc.
7- Remote Controls units - like any other electronic device, a few have been reported & found to be defective - pushing a button 1000 times won't work right if the button is broken/defective in the remote itself
8) Intangibles - moisture, temperature, etc.

Obviously, there are alot of variables.

If some folks have absolutely no problems (other than a few minor bugs already reported) with the exact same hardware, firmware, and programming as constants, it would appear to first look elsewhere for potential sources of user problems with the HR20.

Using logical diagnostic procedures, there are some basic steps one can take to narrow the source of the problem - examples:

1) If there are reception strength or signal problems - the dish, multiswitch, coax connectors, and the coax cables themselves must be thoroughly checked (not just inspected visually)

2) If there are audio issues, the amp/receiver connections & settings, the cables themselves, and the settings for audio (ie Dolby, etc.) must be thoroughly checked (not just inspected visually)

With complex technology, it only takes 1 weak link to make bad things happen. As I stated earlier, diagnosing the culprit to a problem is not an easy task, and I have found many people only do a quick visual inspection to try and find the source of a problem.

I have now heard of 15 different examples from 4 different installers regarding sources of problems that had nothing to do from the HR20 itself, including one or more of the following - bad or outdated (R59U) coax runs, bad coax connectors, mis-aligned dishes, bad or improper HDMI/DVI cables, defective or incompatible HDMI/DVI switches, defective multiswitches, and defective AV equipment (connections or settings). The classic case is the guy who had D*TV installers out to their house twice because he could not get Dolby surround at all, even though the HR20 was set up properly and all cables were new and proper - only to find out that the user's amplifier did not support Dolby (an older unit). :rolleyes:

If someone has performed try examination and tests to address all of the variables listed above and still have a problem with the HR20, my guess is that you have one of the small number out there of bad boxes. there certainly are some out there - as even with a 98% perfect rate, that accounts for at least 400-500 bad boxes in the market to date.

But before we quickly blame the HR20, or start ranting over and over again about how bad the HR20 might be for a particular user, it would be interesting to see how many of those same people actually do all of the proper diagnostics to first eliminate potential other factors that could actually be the real source of their issues. My guess is that's a very small number. It's much easier to complain first and have someone else figure out your problem.

People like Earl and a few others have spent alot of time with the HR20, and we should appreciate what they do for us to enjoy this great unit. Perhaps if everyone takes the responsibility to do more to determine potential problems up front, we could all be equally enjoying this fine new HD DVR technology to its potential.
 

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This is meant as a joke right HDTVfan? Your mantra that it's not the HR20 it's your inability to understand and use the HR20 is getting real old.

It's the HR20 that has problems for the most part.

Please provide sources for your assertions that only 400-500 boxes are bad. Or at least provide some coherent reasoning as to how you came up with that figure.
 

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Yeah - he keeps saying those of us with real problems with this box are:
1. Imagining them
2. User error
3. Don't read the manual

and the list goes on. Let's see - the box can't even handle the time change right for manual recurring recordings! When a user says that, he shoots them down! He thinks just because the box works fine for him, for those who don't they must be complete idiots! This attitude of "the box works great for me therefore those who have legitimate problems are stupid" must stop now!
 

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wakajawaka said:
This is meant as a joke right HDTVfan? Your mantra that it's not the HR20 it's your inability to understand and use the HR20 is getting real old.

It's the HR20 that has problems for the most part.

Please provide sources for your assertions that only 400-500 boxes are bad. Or at least provide some coherent reasoning as to how you came up with that figure.
Geez, lighten up...he didn't say there were only 400-500 bad boxes. He posed a hypothetical that IF 98% of the HR20s in distribution were perfect, that you COULD have as many as 400-500 boxes that were not.

The boxes do appear to have some problems for some people (some major, some minor), but let's not put words in someone's mouth to bolster the case.
 

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hdtvfan0001 said:
Now that a few folks who repeatedly complain about their problems have almost succeeded in making those of us with no problems with the HR20 feel guilty, I have been spending some time to try and help "diagnose" the potential source(s).

Having about 20 years experience in working in the software & hardware world, I know that pinning down a performance or problem is not an easy or quick process most of the time - but here are some thoughts.

Facts:

1) Most people are running the exact same HR20 box
2) Most folks are running with the same/current firmware version
3) Most folks are receiving the same D*TV programming (or optional programming in the case of NFL Sunday Ticket)

Variables:

1) Dish installations - Some have 3 LNBs, some have 5LNBs, signal strengths vary, location of the Dish (roof, pole, etc.) and cables connecting the dish vary, as well as proper grounding
2) Coax connectivity and corresponding multiswitches - I've heard from installers that some folks are still using R59U instead of R6U sat coax throughout their house, and numerous defective coax end connectors have resolved problems as well
3) Audio/video equipment - variables include optical, HDMI, DVI, and other connectivity
4) Connectivity/conversion switching - HDMI to DVI cables or through DVI switch, Component via multi-port switch, etc.
5) Projection/TV set connectivity - various versions of HDMI connections and HD presentation units/sets, as well as DVI or component connectivity
6) End user setup/configurations vary - Dolby on / Dolby off, 10880i or 720p HD, etc.
7- Remote Controls units - like any other electronic device, a few have been reported & found to be defective - pushing a button 1000 times won't work right if the button is broken/defective in the remote itself
8) Intangibles - moisture, temperature, etc.

Obviously, there are alot of variables.

If some folks have absolutely no problems (other than a few minor bugs already reported) with the exact same hardware, firmware, and programming as constants, it would appear to first look elsewhere for potential sources of user problems with the HR20.

Using logical diagnostic procedures, there are some basic steps one can take to narrow the source of the problem - examples:

1) If there are reception strength or signal problems - the dish, multiswitch, coax connectors, and the coax cables themselves must be thoroughly checked (not just inspected visually)

2) If there are audio issues, the amp/receiver connections & settings, the cables themselves, and the settings for audio (ie Dolby, etc.) must be thoroughly checked (not just inspected visually)

With complex technology, it only takes 1 weak link to make bad things happen. As I stated earlier, diagnosing the culprit to a problem is not an easy task, and I have found many people only do a quick visual inspection to try and find the source of a problem.

I have now heard of 15 different examples from 4 different installers regarding sources of problems that had nothing to do from the HR20 itself, including one or more of the following - bad or outdated (R59U) coax runs, bad coax connectors, mis-aligned dishes, bad or improper HDMI/DVI cables, defective or incompatible HDMI/DVI switches, defective multiswitches, and defective AV equipment (connections or settings). The classic case is the guy who had D*TV installers out to their house twice because he could not get Dolby surround at all, even though the HR20 was set up properly and all cables were new and proper - only to find out that the user's amplifier did not support Dolby (an older unit). :rolleyes:

If someone has performed try examination and tests to address all of the variables listed above and still have a problem with the HR20, my guess is that you have one of the small number out there of bad boxes. there certainly are some out there - as even with a 98% perfect rate, that accounts for at least 400-500 bad boxes in the market to date.

But before we quickly blame the HR20, or start ranting over and over again about how bad the HR20 might be for a particular user, it would be interesting to see how many of those same people actually do all of the proper diagnostics to first eliminate potential other factors that could actually be the real source of their issues. My guess is that's a very small number. It's much easier to complain first and have someone else figure out your problem.

People like Earl and a few others have spent alot of time with the HR20, and we should appreciate what they do for us to enjoy this great unit. Perhaps if everyone takes the responsibility to do more to determine potential problems up front, we could all be equally enjoying this fine new HD DVR technology to its potential.
I concur completely with you assessment. Our unit has had relatively few problems since the latest software update, but it definitely does still have some occassional issues. The one thing of note is that the latest problems seem to appear over time and resolve with a reset.

Both myself and the D* installers have checked and double-checked the RG6 feeds, multi-switch, grounds and dish so it appears to be a box issue, but my experience would lead me to believe that it is a cumulative type of anomaly. Maybe to do with the # of shows recorded (100+ recordings recorded and watched per week), or just some poorly written housekeeping process.

Despite my wife's complaints I think the box is very close to being rock solid. It doesn't miss recordings and with the exception of the bogus recording we had last night (resulting in a red button reset and loss of the episode) we have been able to get every show to play back with only a couple of minor glitches (freexing during FF a few times).
 

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hasan said:
Geez, lighten up...he didn't say there were only 400-500 bad boxes. He posed a hypothetical that IF 98% of the HR20s in distribution were perfect, that you COULD have as many as 400-500 boxes that were not.

The boxes do appear to have some problems for some people (some major, some minor), but let's not put words in someone's mouth to bolster the case.
So, it is a completelty meaningless statistic because it's based on nothing. That's MY point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
wakajawaka said:
This is meant as a joke right HDTVfan? Your mantra that it's not the HR20 it's your inability to understand and use the HR20 is getting real old.

It's the HR20 that has problems for the most part.
Then I guess you must know more than all of the installers, users, technicians, and D*TV itself, since there is not one fact in existence to support the HR20 being the source of many of the "reported issues" reported here. :rolleyes:

The few limited legitimate HR20 issues are already properly reported and in the resolution queue. If some of these others were, in fact, HR20 issues, they would impact almost if not everyone - and the fact is they don't. :nono:

It's amazing how a few posters here look for every opportunity to utter simple cutesy retorts and perform lame blame on the HR20 without much diagnostic work. It's a sad testimony to the "it's someone else's fault" mentality. :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
hdtvfan12345 said:
Yeah - he keeps saying those of us with real problems with this box are:
1. Imagining them
2. User error
3. Don't read the manual
Obviously this person did not read the first post here. None of these reasons were listed.
 

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hdtvfan12345 said:
Yeah - he keeps saying those of us with real problems with this box are:
1. Imagining them
2. User error
3. Don't read the manual

and the list goes on. Let's see - the box can't even handle the time change right for manual recurring recordings! When a user says that, he shoots them down! He thinks just because the box works fine for him, for those who don't they must be complete idiots! This attitude of "the box works great for me therefore those who have legitimate problems are stupid" must stop now!
It would be nice if the intemperate rants on all sides would desist as well. I'm not in one camp or the other. I've had VERY few issues in 4 weeks. That doesn't mean there aren't any. There are sooooo many variables to consider (I replied to another post HDMI vs Component outlining how messy the problem really is)

These problems have to be worked through in a calm, rational manner. Getting pissed (at an inanimate object, corporation or other user) accomplishes ZERO. Quite a bit of what hdtv fan offered was solid troubleshooting advice. Take what is valuable from his post(s) and simply disregard the rest. Your blood pressure will thank you.

None of this is easy for the those having major problems. Doses of empathy on one side and restraint on the other are in order.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
lguvenoz said:
I concur completely with you assessment. Our unit has had relatively few problems since the latest software update, but it definitely does still have some occassional issues. The one thing of note is that the latest problems seem to appear over time and resolve with a reset.

Both myself and the D* installers have checked and double-checked the RG6 feeds, multi-switch, grounds and dish so it appears to be a box issue, but my experience would lead me to believe that it is a cumulative type of anomaly. Maybe to do with the # of shows recorded (100+ recordings recorded and watched per week), or just some poorly written housekeeping process.

Despite my wife's complaints I think the box is very close to being rock solid. It doesn't miss recordings and with the exception of the bogus recording we had last night (resulting in a red button reset and loss of the episode) we have been able to get every show to play back with only a couple of minor glitches (freexing during FF a few times).
Thanks for restoring my faith that there are still some people who understand reality/ :)
 

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wakajawaka said:
So, it is a completelty meaningless statistic because it's based on nothing. That's MY point.
Then make your point, don't misrepresent what someone actually said. There's enough confusion in these threads from the near hysteria some people react with, we don't need to deliberately confuse matters further. (If you'll read my other posts, you will see I agree with many of your basic points....I just don't like some of the tactics.
 

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My receiver had ZERO problems until the last two updates. None, nada. No signal problems, no error messages, all recordings perfect, nothing. Same hardware setup on the roof and switches/cables, etc. The 2 updates are the ONLY variable that changed. How's that for pinning down a performance problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
hasan said:
It would be nice if the intemperate rants on all sides would desist as well. .....There are sooooo many variables to consider (I replied to another post HDMI vs Component outlining how messy the problem really is)

These problems have to be worked through in a calm, rational manner.
Thanks for your rational comments. That's where this whole thread started....a clear explanation of the variables involved in diagnosing the potential problems a few are reporting with the HR20. It took 9 minutes for the boo-bird naysayers to jump in with their unfortunate and unfounded retorts. It's also clear those same people didn't read the first post. For some unknown reason, they seemed insulted that the HR20 itself might actually not be the source of everyone's problems (which is a fact). And you wonder why people have this attitude. :eek2:
 

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ktabel01 said:
My receiver had ZERO problems until the last two updates. None, nada. No signal problems, no error messages, all recordings perfect, nothing. Same hardware setup on the roof and switches/cables, etc. The 2 updates are the ONLY variable that changed. How's that for pinning down a performance problem.
Wrong. Passage of time....a potentially VERY important variable. (that in your case I dismiss). Chances are the updates broke something for you in the HR20 (I don't mean physically). From other posts you probably aren't the first to have an update break a previously functioning HR20 (see the HDMI thread)

I think you have pinned down something important and can hope that the next update helps ya.
 

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I myself have had very few problems with the HR20, but let's face it, it was released with bugs! No misaligned dish or bad coax or connections, will cause deleted or canceled recordings or system lockups (requiring resets)!

All other issues people may be having with the HR20, I agree, "user error", unable to properly troubleshoot, inflate the negatives, and may not be attributed to the HR20 at all!
 

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hdtvfan0001 said:
For some unknown reason, they seemed insulted that the HR20 itself might actually not be the source of everyone's problems (which is a fact). And you wonder why people have this attitude. :eek2:
No, some of us are insulted by your frequent suggestions in other posts in this forum that our problems are the result of "user error", "not reading the manual", and in general suggesting we are clueless! That's what we are insulted by! And you wonder why people have this attitude toward your posts? When you start this thread off with the first sentence saying "Now that a few folks who repeatedly complain about their problems have almost succeeded in making those of us with no problems with the HR20 feel guilty" you wonder why that isn't inflammatory?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
hdtvfan12345 said:
No, some of us are insulted by your frequent suggestions in other posts...
So you didn't read the first post and are ranting about other unrelated things - I get it. :rolleyes: You're clearly looking for a verbal fight - based on your sub-name and your comments. I see you are a "new poster" wiht the same kind of comments as 3-4 other select naysayers here. We see what you're up to. Now you're on ignore.

Thanks to those with the couple of good/positive comments and observations.

Perhaps those of us with legitimate concerns and efforts can jointly try to help others narrow the source of their problems. Sorry about those distrupters here who try and hijack a thread all the time.
 

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hdtvfan0001 said:
So you didn't read the first post and are ranting about other unrelated things - I get it. :.

Perhaps those of us with legitimate concerns and efforts can jointly try to help others narrow the source of their problems. Sorry about those distrupters here who try and hijack a thread all the time.
I read your first post and your first sentence as I said above. Funny about you talking about hijacking threads. How many have you hijacked when someone posted a legitimate problem and then you post the inane response "I never had that problem so it must be user error". Yeah, that's real helpful.

Pot, kettle, black.
 
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