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· New Member
5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK... so I had my brand new HR34 installed this past Saturday. I've been a DirecTV customer for 15 years, so when I spoke to the reps on the phone, after being passed around a bit, I was able to get it for free with a $20 install. I already had two HD DVRs plus 3 other HD receivers in the house. We have had the Whole Home DVR set up for some time now, and love it.

Initially, the install went smoothly and it was terrific, until it came time to hook it into my stereo system. Who is the brain surgeon that decided this unit didn't need to have an Optical out for audio?? The old ones have it - and my stereo receiver is an older unit without HDMI connections... so I have used the Optical out to get the best audio through my system. Of course, the old stereo receiver doesn't have Coax audio inputs either, so i was left with having to use plain old L + R audio out/in to connect. There goes my surround sound. I ordered a Optical to Coax converter, but it hasn't come in yet. It's just a pain in the neck! Why would they remove Optical??

Anyway, the receiver had a few glitches the first day. Things didn't record properly, a few 'tuner not available' messages, etc. Then it downloaded a software update and all of these went away.

I did have a problem with streaming to one of the HD Receivers in the house. We have one of the newer H25 little receivers. Until I got the HR34, this unit worked fine with Whole Home, streaming from both of my HD DVRs. Once the HR34 was hooked in, however, it wouldn't stream properly. It was buffering like crazy, choppy, wouldn't load from the HR34 at all... and the connections from the other two HD DVRs wasn't great either (it had never been a problem before). I restarted all of the receivers a few times, waited a while, and tried again, and the problem seems to have gone away. Not sure what it was, but it seems to be solved now.

Now... i just get to enjoy it. It's so nice to be able to set my season passes (sorry, old Tivo terminology - I REALLY wanted to like the DirecTivo HD I beta tested, but it didn't do Whole Home so it was useless to me!)... anyway, I can set them and not worry about conflicts anymore. We're 'grandfathered' in to get both east and west coast broadcast network affiliates, so many times I'd have to get the west coast feeds of shows when there were more than 2 things on at the same time. now, I just set them all up, and I can watch 4 or 5 shows recording at the same time. Very sweet!!

I love it. I got a great price on it (essentially, free), but I would have paid for it anyway (maybe not the $400 they're asking for, but I would have paid something). But it's awesome. Apart from the lack of Optical output. :)

Gene on Long Island

· Legend
103 Posts
Unfortunately most new equipment is losing the optical audio ports. Pretty much all home theater A/V units now come with HDMI connections. The reason you were having so many issues with your HR34 at first is because it takes 3 - 4 days for all of the background software to get up and running seamlessly. After about a week you should be good to go, and once the HD Guide is ready for download you'll really be good to go. Make sure to play around with the picture-in-picture function also as it's awesome!
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