DBSTalk Forum banner
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hello everyone.

I'm a newbie to your forum and to the dvr world. I'm a low end audio and video file. We currently have a sony kv-34xbr800 hd tv, and are using a sony sat-hd200 satellite receiver. im thinking about buying my wife the new directv plus hd dvr for christmas and just put us on the waiting list with directv for a unit.

But after reading some of the posts on your forum it sounds like the hr20 has some issues, and I'm a little concerned.

We would be using the unit like a vcr, just to record programs we would normally miss. and of course as a hd tuner. we currently get or local hd programming and hd package from directv.

I currently use the dvi connection from the sat. receiver to the tv, but do have an hdmi input on the tv. and use an optic cable from the sat. receiver to our a/v receiver for our audio/surround sound.

Do you think I'm opening a can of worms going with the hr-20? Or is it pretty much trouble free for what we will be using it for?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,880 Posts
First of all, welcome to the forum :D

Your questions have many different answers. Some people have had problems and some have not. I am in the "minor" problem camp; most of the issues I have experienced with my HR20 have been minor, and many have been fixed at one point or another with the barrage of software updates. There are others here that have had really bad experiences with the HR20 so far and I'm still not clear why mine works fine and others work like crap.

In terms of your Sony HDTV and the HDMI connectivity, I haven't seen many reports here of problems with the HR20 HDMI connected to a Sony TV. I have a Sony KDF50WE655, and the HDMI compatibility has been perfect since day 1. Hopefully someone here has your exact model # and would be able to tell you just how well it works with the HR20.

I say since you're already a D* subscriber, give it a shot.
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
It depends how patient and forgiving you are. It's fairly likely that at some point in time it's either not going to record a show or record it and when you play it, it will appear black. Sure it's upsetting when it happens but otherwise the unit is pretty well.

I'm in the minor issue camp as well. I get a few recordings that I can't watch but other than that I'm pretty happy. The unit has a lot of potential, so it's just a matter of getting working with the issues that do pop up and waiting for the latest code updates to come out.

Also, being on the west coast, you're basically going to get the new updates first, so if D* releases a buggy update, you're going to see it first. Those of us on the East cost have the luxury of having the West coasters test for us and if a release is particularly buggy, we won't even get it. Those are rare but they do happen. It's something to keep in mind.
 

·
Lifetime Achiever
Joined
·
21,331 Posts
2Tonedug,

Indeed, welcome to the forums. Your input is welcomed, your presence appreciated. (meant sincerely even if sounding a lot formal and fluffy :) )

Here is the approach I took. I had a very satisfactory AV setup at all my viewing locations, HD where I wanted, SD everywhere else. I knew of the HR20 and a bit of the problems some people experienced, but wasn't going to jump until I got a deal.

I happened to be on the phone with D* about my sports subs and I asked as I usually do, "whats the best deal on the HR20, new dish, etc.?" And they cut me an awesome deal. Basically shipping cost on multiple HR20s. Even tho I wasn't ready (actually, I didn't think the HR20 was ready) I jumped.

Because of the instability (had a lockup this morning, alas), I don't use the HR20s as my primary DVR. I still use my DTivos for that. I use the HR20s as receivers and backups. And as a receiver for a room that didn't have HD before, but can use it now. But I can't rely on the HR20s while I'm away on vacation.

I do like several of the features of the HR20. And I see promise in the future direction D* seems to be foreshadowing for the line. So when they are solid and stable, my "investment", mostly in the way of time and energy, will be worth it.

So, I suggest you ask yourself what your immediate goals are and what your medium-term goals are. If you can cut a great deal, you might want to get one now, knowing D* continues to have some growing pains. And continue to use your current VCR as a backup.

On the other hand, if you need a solid DVR right now with solid HD ability, I would suggest you buy a HR10-250 (DTivo) off ebay or from the few dealers that have one or two left.

HTH,
Tom
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the quick replys. Do the updates go directly to the unit? Via the phone line or through the satelite? Or do i have to get them online, and download them to the unit through a usb cable? Boy that would be a pain in the butt.

Tibber- The unit would be our main recorder. Our vcr just died, thats why I'm thinking of making the change. And as far as instability, it has to be better than that old vcr :lol: at least in the recording department.

My concern is in our regular tv viewing. My tv is about 4 years old, and is hd ready, no tuner built in. That why I went with the Sony receiver, it has built in hd tuner. Does the hr20 have the tuner built in?
 

·
Lifetime Achiever
Joined
·
30,092 Posts
The software updates are automatic and via the SAT connection.

And yes, the HR20 has two tuners built in for SAT, and two tuners built in for OTA (which should be activated shortly)
 

·
Lifetime Achiever
Joined
·
21,331 Posts
2tonedug said:
Thanks for the quick replys. Do the updates go directly to the unit? Via the phone line or through the satelite? Or do i have to get them online, and download them to the unit through a usb cable? Boy that would be a pain in the butt.

Tibber- The unit would be our main recorder. Our vcr just died, thats why I'm thinking of making the change. And as far as instability, it has to be better than that old vcr :lol: at least in the recording department.

My concern is in our regular tv viewing. My tv is about 4 years old, and is hd ready, no tuner built in. That why I went with the Sony receiver, it has built in hd tuner. Does the hr20 have the tuner built in?
You are very welcome.

My experiences suggest that I would not want to depend on the HR20 as my only recording device, especially if I would have to explain to other members of the family why their favorite show did not record last night. And some months I seem to travel, and each time this past month, the HR20 has locked up on the first night of my travels, missing at least a weeks worth of recordings.

As for the the HD tuner, expectations are very high that this unit is rumored to have a very good, recent generation HD tuner. While I'm very happy with my DTivos tuners, I still am looking forward to the new ones in the HR20s.

Cheers,
Tom
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
2tonedug said:
My concern is in our regular tv viewing. My tv is about 4 years old, and is hd ready, no tuner built in. That why I went with the Sony receiver, it has built in hd tuner. Does the hr20 have the tuner built in?
Once OTA is activated, you shouldn't need that Sony receiver (if you have the HR20). The OTA feature is expected to be activated very shortly. I'm pretty sure before year end (unless something pushes it back). The HR20 will let you watch or record OTA signals and work as a tuner for you.

Also, I'd recommend against TOSlink. Even with a quartz cable, I'm not fond of the quality of sound that it delivers. If you're just using it for HT, then I guess it's OK but I can't recommend it for music.
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
nFavor said:
Once OTA is activated, you shouldn't need that Sony receiver (if you have the HR20). The OTA feature is expected to be activated very shortly. I'm pretty sure before year end (unless something pushes it back). The HR20 will let you watch or record OTA signals and work as a tuner for you.

Also, I'd recommend against TOSlink. Even with a quartz cable, I'm not fond of the quality of sound that it delivers. If you're just using it for HT, then I guess it's OK but I can't recommend it for music.
Thats ok about the OTA not being activated. My local hd stations come through the satellite and not an antenna. So thats no biggie. my question for nFavor is what is "HT". i thought the optic cable is best for audio. What do you use? the coax?
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
do you guys think i should wait for D* for the receiver. are the they only ones who sell it? does anyone know a better deal, like a group buy?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,880 Posts
2tonedug said:
do you guys think i should wait for D* for the receiver. are the they only ones who sell it? does anyone know a better deal, like a group buy?
Your local electronics store, such as Best Buy or Circuit City, may have them. If you go through D* directly, you may be able to get a deal out of them.
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
2tonedug said:
Thats ok about the OTA not being activated. My local hd stations come through the satellite and not an antenna. So thats no biggie. my question for nFavor is what is "HT". i thought the optic cable is best for audio. What do you use? the coax?
HT is Home Theater. I think you'd be fine for HDTV and HT with optical but it does make a difference if you're using the system for high end music listening. Coaxial is typically better. The only problem there is that it doesn't have the bandwith for 7.1 audio, which leads us to HDMI. I prefer MIT cables but they are pretty expensive.
 

·
Lifetime Achiever
Joined
·
21,331 Posts
nFavor said:
HT is Home Theater. I think you'd be fine for HDTV and HT with optical but it does make a difference if you're using the system for high end music listening. Coaxial is typically better. The only problem there is that it doesn't have the bandwith for 7.1 audio, which leads us to HDMI. I prefer MIT cables but they are pretty expensive.
nFavor,

Are you saying you have experienced higher data error rates with optical or that the sound "feels different" between optical and coaxial? They are the same digital data, just different transport (which can lead to different error rates.)

Cheers,
Tom
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Do you guys think the problems with the hr20 not recording at times, will be fixed eventually with software updates? Or will they always posses these problems? From what I'm reading on the forum is not everyone is having this problem. Is it just the older units? Or luck of the draw?
 

·
Lifetime Achiever
Joined
·
21,331 Posts
2tonedug said:
Do you guys think the problems with the hr20 not recording at times, will be fixed eventually with software updates? Or will they always posses these problems? From what I'm reading on the forum is not everyone is having this problem. Is it just the older units? Or luck of the draw?
I think so. I hope so. I'm planning that they will.

Now, some of the people who read the R15 forums (which is a year older half-brother to the HR20) indicate that they are still missing some recordings...

Cheers,
Tom
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
will the hr20 work with my current 3lnb dish... as you can tell i want to arm myself will all the information i can before i make the plunge.
 
Joined
·
189 Posts
My Hr-20 is working well with a 3 LNB dish.
 

·
Lifetime Achiever
Joined
·
30,092 Posts
2tonedug said:
will the hr20 work with my current 3lnb dish... as you can tell i want to arm myself will all the information i can before i make the plunge.
St Louis Cardinals Fan said:
My Hr-20 is working well with a 3 LNB dish.
Other then not being able to recieve the MPEG-4 signals (Which could be your HD-Locals), it will work just fine.
 

·
AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Earl Bonovich said:
Other then not being able to recieve the MPEG-4 signals (Which could be your HD-Locals), it will work just fine.
Earl, I just put us on the waiting list for a hr20 at D*. they said it would be 2 to 3 weeks before they get them in. Do you think I should have them install a 5 LNB dish while their out here? I do get get my local HD channels thru D*, Los Angeles stations. So if i will have to get a 5 LNB eventually I may as well have them do it now.
 

·
Lifetime Achiever
Joined
·
30,092 Posts
2tonedug said:
Earl, I just put us on the waiting list for a hr20 at D*. they said it would be 2 to 3 weeks before they get them in. Do you think I should have them install a 5 LNB dish while their out here? I do get get my local HD channels thru D*, Los Angeles stations. So if i will have to get a 5 LNB eventually I may as well have them do it now.
Sure, why not... hence your 2nd appointment when they bring the HR20, will be much shorter.
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top