Panasonic DMR-EZ17K DVD Player/Recorder - Page 8 - AVS Forum
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post #211 of 440 Old 01-06-2008, 03:48 PM
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Jeff,

LOL! That reminds me of calling Dell Technical Support. Sometimes it's just guesswork. Back in the old days I would tell our techs that I brought a special tool to the office for use on a bad computer. The tech asked what the tool was. My response "a very large hammer; once its broken into little pieces you will have to find a new computer."

In this room there are just regular light bulbs in the fixtures and whatever light comes off two 13 inch RCA TVs and two Dell LCD monitors.

Did you know that back in the 1800's, before the common use of electricity, folks had to watch TV by candlelight?

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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post #212 of 440 Old 01-13-2008, 08:08 AM
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Earlier in this thread I described and linked to a post concerning the cleaning of Panasonic DVD drive lens, spindles, and related parts. My post characterized opening of DVD drives as being simple and straightforward, which it is for 2006 and newer models. (These DVD drives, with the exception of the several ribbon connections on the underside, are largely self-contained metal units somewhat like those found in computers.)

In the 2006 and newer models the opening of the Panasonic case, removing the DVD drive lid, cleaning the drive, closing of the drive lid, and closing the case takes less than fifteen minutes.

Yesterday came the first occasion I had to open a DMR-ES30V case for DVD drive cleaning. I found the DVD drive on this 2005 model to be a black plastic assembly with an operational mechanism partly extending from the right side, and what seems to be some type of interlock at the left rear. Due to some time constraints it was necessary to set aside the DMR-ES30V. I expect to return to this project as I have more time to determine the correct DVD drive opening procedure.

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

--Benjamin Breckinridge Warfield (1917)
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post #213 of 440 Old 01-13-2008, 09:36 AM
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I'll be interested in you results. I'm having problems with 2 of my 3 es-30's. They like to self check during finalizing, which either wipes out the disc, or makes it unfinalizable. Basically only able to play on Panny DVDR's. Keep us informed. Depending on your luck, I may try opening up mine. I'll admit, I haven't opened the case on any of my DVDR's. Now my VHS's were another story. I used to clean heads, tape paths, replace idler pulleys and belts. With the DVDR's I didn't figure I could do anything but run the lens cleaner disc through it, and hope for the best. Maybe I was wrong.
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post #214 of 440 Old 01-13-2008, 06:26 PM
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Jeff,

Today I set aside more time to clean the DVD and VHS drives of my original DMR-ES30V. This is the first Panasonic DVD combo recorder I purchased new in September 2005. After eleven months’ use there was a DVD drive failure. Panasonic replaced the DVD drive under warranty in August 2006. Other than that this DMR-ES30V has performed well; initially as the primary DVD recorder and later as the secondary DVD recorder, one of two Panasonics enslaved to Comcast digital cable boxes since new. This machine has had frequent heavy use.

I pulled this DMR-ES30V from service following a disc recording failure, a lock-up requiring a manual power down, a self-test without recovery, a channel up/down forced reset, after which I could eject the disc. (None of these measures have been needed on this machine since August 2006.) The failed disc had a chunk of debris stuck to the recording surface at the point where the recording ended. After removing the debris from the disc it could not be read on a DMR-ES35V.

Whenever I have a disc recording failure I remove the machine from service, clean the DVD drive, and either return the machine to service or swap it out with a standby machine. This machine was set aside for standby use.

DISSASSEMBLY AND CLEANING: See general information in the earlier post. On a DMR-ES30V the case cover and the front panel needs to be removed in order to give clearance for the DVD drive lid to be lifted somewhat at the front, slid forward, allowing the rear to disengage, following which the lid may be lifted off. The opaque plastic part (earlier thought to be an "interlock") seems to be a retainer/guide. Following the detailed instructions in the earlier link clean the lens, rubber and plastic spindle parts and hub area, and the circular hub in the DVD drive lid. Clean the VHS drive as well. Hold the VHS door open as the front panel is fitted back into place. Allow around 35 minutes for these procedures.

This DMR-ES30V DVD drive was found with a soiled rubber spindle and hub with loose dust and debris on the spindle and disc tray. The VHS tape path and recording heads were cleaned but the greased mechanisms were not serviced even though they had collected much dust and debris. The swabs were very dirty after the cleaning.

MODEL COMPARISONS. As I have serviced and/or rebuilt several DMR-ES35V or DMR-ES15 models, here are some observations of differences between the DMR-ES30V and those models:

The DMR-ES30V DVD drive is of a more open design on the underside. This admits more dust and debris than later model drives. There is a greased bumper at the rear of the DVD tray above and behind the spinning disc. This would seem to attract more debris than the greased rod assemblies located below the disc tray.

The DMR-ES30V has a smaller fan than the DMR-ES35V. There is no fan on the DMR-ES15 model. The DMR-ES30V power supply is found on its own platform at the rear center; the DMR-ES35V and DMR-ES15 power supplies are incorporated into the right chassis motherboard (DMR-ES35V) or the main chassis motherboard (DMR-ES15). The DMR-ES30V front panel has two circuit boards; the right circuit board spans two thirds the width of the machine, carrying the comprehensive display and the right button switches; the DMR-ES35V display incorporates the remote sensor and is mounted at the front of the left chassis motherboard; the DMR-ES30V remote sensor is incorporated into the power button assembly, and, with the inputs, is part of the left front panel circuit board; the DMR-ES35V has smaller left and right front panel circuit boards that carry switches for the front panel buttons and inputs on the left. The DMR-ES15 has switch pad circuit boards mounted to the chassis.

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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post #215 of 440 Old 01-16-2008, 05:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txjohnr View Post

I recently purchased the EZ17K and have mixed feelings about it. Not sure if I should return it or not. On the good side, I've NEVER had any audio problems with it (no missing dialog on 5.1 downmixed recordings) and the recording quality is pretty damn good.

On the negative side, the recorder seems to have issues with DVD-R DL (dual layer) discs. I did try a couple of Verbatim DVD-R DL discs and the recorder was incapable of finalizing the discs. Upon trying, I'd get an error message saying "Finalization failed." They won't play back anywhere else now. Panasonic didn't have any good ideas as to why it did that. I managed to extract the video from the disc with my PC, but that was a pain in the butt. But what Panasonic said in the manual is true. There IS a gap where the layer change is. Probably about a three second loss of content.

I did have success with a DVD+R (dual layer) disc, however. It finalized, but took FOREVER to do so. I haven't noticed any gap during playback at the layer change, but i have not extracted the video with my PC to confirm that is the case.

DVD+RW works great, haven't tried DVD-RW or DVD-RAM yet.

One problem I do have with the machine is the "INPUT LEVEL" control in the "BLACK LEVEL CONTROL" in the "VIDEO" section of the "SETUP" menu. The setting only allows for a "Darker" or "Lighter" setting, which I hate. The original signal I want to record looks so much better and this recorder won't let me pass it through unaltered. I've tested it and it records either "darker" or "lighter" than the original. Its either too dark or washed out looking in comparison. In my opinion. But maybe I'm being nitpicky. Anyone know how to disable that setting?

Thanks,
John R

"I managed to extract the video from the disc with my PC, but that was a pain in the butt."
how do? thanks.
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post #216 of 440 Old 01-16-2008, 11:14 PM
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Jeff,

In a 1/6/08 post I wrote:

"Today neither Panasonic remote nor the Philips remote would power on the two DMR-EZ17s. This is unlikely to be related to the remotes as the Panasonics wouldn't power on by pressing the power button on the machines themselves. When I pressed the open/close buttons on the machines the Panasonics did power on and open their trays. Since then both machines have been functioning normally and are entirely responsive to the three remotes . . . Is this a previously reported bug and fix?"

Today the same condition affected my second DMR-ES30V. (This is not the machine that I recently set aside for standby use after cleaning.) This machine is set up on the same power strip as were the two DMR-EZ17 models mentioned on 1/6/08. This DMR-ES30V was most recently used for a scheduled OTA recording on the morning of 1/14/08. Today, while the display showed the correct time, the machine would not respond to its remote, the machine's power button, or the open command for the DVD tray. I unplugged the machine's power cord for one minute and then plugged it back in. Still no response. Then I inserted a videotape and the machine came to life and started playing the tape. Now this DMR-ES30V is functional once again and responsive to its power button and remote. (One Toshiba VCR, one Dell computer, and an HP printer sharing the same power source were unaffected.)

Perhaps there is such a thing as "tired electricity" that has caused three different Panasonics to fall asleep.

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

--Benjamin Breckinridge Warfield (1917)
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post #217 of 440 Old 01-17-2008, 05:36 AM
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Digado-Actually I do have a good idea what is happening with the es-30, but feel kinda sheepish talking about here, on this EZ-17 thread. But since you posed the question here, and after a search I did not really find any EXTENSIVE thread on the es-30, here goes:
There is a bug on the es-30 that I discovered years ago. I could also repeat it, and tried to get Panasonic to correct it, but no luck. Even back then I could not get them to fix bugs I found! This problem effected all 3 of my 3 es-30's, so I'm sure I just don't have the only machines with the problem.
The bug involves the timer again.(I guess sometimes things don't change..) Anyway if a person programs the timer for a DVD event, does not insert a recordable DVD and then turns the machine off, the next day you will have almost an impossible time turning it back on.

The first time I did this I had an event programmed in for 1 week into the future. I was using the DVDR for playing DVD's daily, and knew the event was not for a week in the future, so after playing the DVD I did not put a blank DVD in the tray, because I knew I would just be playing another DVD tommarow, and would only need to remove the blank again. Well the next day I went to turn the DVDR on and NOTHING. It had the clock along with a little red clock time icon lite(which should not have been lite since there was no blank DVD in the tray). I tried everything, power cycle, 30 min. unplug, bang on all the buttons, etc. I was panicking. My new $300 DVDR and it just sat there unresponsive. In desperation I called Panasonic, they had me try all the reset methods etc. all to no avail. Finally they told me to leave it unplugged overnight and try it in the morning. I did this and it was still unresponsive in the morning. So I called Panasonic back, the next person had me try all the previous things, still nothing. Finally he gave me a RMA number and was giving me instructions to send my new DVDR in for service, when he said, try to put a VHS in.
Well I did that and wala, it came on in full glory.

From then on I never left a VHS in the machine during power off. I figured if this ever happened again(which it did many times before I figured the bug out) if I did have a VHS in the unit, it may never wake up since I could not insert a tape to wake it up.

The bug turned out to be if you had a schedule programed in to record to DVD for a future date, and turned the machine off, with no recordable DVD in the tray, and tried to turn the DVDR on the next day, NO go. Now if you just turned the machine back on the same day it was fine, it had to do with midnight again. In this bug the clock icon was a good indication of what was going on, unlike the timer bug on the EZ-17. On the es-30 if you turned the machine off, with no disc inserted and a timer event programmed, the clock icon would not come on. As it should, it is telling you there is a problem. The bug happens after midnight when the icon then comes on, which it should not, since there is no disc inserted.
Digado-does my chain of events for your unresponsive es-30 fit your case?
And no, Panasonic never did fix this ES-30 bug, I tried the latest firmware a few years ago, and still the bug is there.
I did call Panasonic back years ago to tell them my findings and suggested they should pass the info on, for any customer calling with the same problem, but I got the opinion that my info stopped at the CSR I was talking to.... Nothing like reinventing the wheel with every call!!

Maybe there is a similar problem with your EZ-17, although personally I have not ran across it. And since it has no VHS to wake it up, I wouldnt have a clue how to wake it. Please document the occasions your EZ-17 does this, and try and figure a pattern. I have quite a log on all my Panny's documenting problems I've had. It sure helps for troubleshooting, something I would have hope the manufacture had done!!! You know, QC, product testing, all that stuff.

P.S. Sorry for the length of this post. It's just that I have never documented this problem before at AVS or any forum. I thought it might be helpful to someone. I suppose I should document on my "timer bug" thread, even if a bit late. To tell the truth I had actually forgot about it, until you brought it up. Probably not a lot of es-30 users out there anymore.
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post #218 of 440 Old 01-17-2008, 10:03 AM
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Jeff,

The DMR-ES30V scenario you described is exactly the one I experienced. After two and a half years of experience with two DMR-ES30V machines this is the first time this has happened. In recent months this DMR-ES30V has been the least used of my Panasonics set up for regular use. Currently this machine has one every-Monday half-hour program scheduled on PBS (OTA).

I should have mentioned two other pieces of information in my post:

1-The red clock timer indicator was on, just as you described. I thought that was odd as I knew there was no DVD in the drive.

2-I made sure the videotape had the security tab pulled so it would autoplay upon insertion. This is important as an intact security tab may not have caused the machine to come to life, in which case I might have added another complicating factor.

By the way, I have noticed two quirks on the other DMR-ES30V:

1-After a while the clock looses a minute or two.

2-The tuner changes the channel, for no apparent reason, to PBS channel 10 even though no recordings were made or scheduled for that channel.

I have reason to believe that the DMR-ES30V bug is the same as that of the DMR-EZ17 models mentioned in my 1/6/08 post. I had been checking out both machines and had swapped discs back and forth the evening before and shut them off before midnight. Neither DMR-EZ17s had recordable DVDs inserted. I know that my first DMR-EZ17 did have scheduled recordings awaiting at about noon the next morning, but I doubt that the other one did, but it might have as I was checking out that machine's operation before giving it to a relative on 1/7/08. Pressing the DVD open button brought these DMR-EZ17 models back to life.

Thank you again for sharing your information and experience.

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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post #219 of 440 Old 01-17-2008, 10:08 AM
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Set clock manually (no auto-clock) and turn DST off (often called "Summer Time")?
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post #220 of 440 Old 01-17-2008, 12:15 PM
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Wajo,

Thank you for the tips.

Jeff,

I would hope that you might post your findings on a general Panasonic troubleshooting thread as it appears that the same bugs and design flaws exist in several models covering successive product generations.

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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post #221 of 440 Old 01-17-2008, 02:00 PM
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DigaDo-I will post the es-30 bug on the "missing scheduled events" thread maybe later tonight. I want to rewrite it. First one might have been confusing. Also the tape need not have the tab taken out. I never do that, and it woke up with a regular tape w/tab intact.
I've never noticed the time to be off on my es-30, and I always use autoclock set on, and DST on. I would suspect your local PBS station, or wherever the es-30 gets its signal. If that's the case, I would do as Wajo said, turn the features off.
As far as the different channels, I have had this happen several times to just one of my 3 es-30's. It goes to a channel that I never watch. It really never bothered me, but I did think it was odd.

I will try an experiment on my EZ-17 to see if it has the bug about having a event scheduled and no disc in it. I don't know if I have ever done this since I really never play on the EZ-17. I just record, so I always put a blank disc in the machine right after the first one is finished/finalized. I'm kinda scared to try this, because if I can't wake it without the VHS, but since you said the eject woke it up, I feel better. Plus the machine is still under warranty, but I hate sending things in.
It sure is funny how these bugs exist, and it seems to effect very few people. It's all in the manner of how a person uses the machine.
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post #222 of 440 Old 01-17-2008, 02:32 PM
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Jeff,

I'm not suggesting that you try this experiment.

I'm just saying that you should be aware that the DVD tray open button worked for two DMR-EZ17 models with January and February 2007 build dates.

The quirk I've noticed in the DMR-EZ17 scheduling menu, even after shutting down and powering the machine back on, the "OK" (Date) to record indicator for the remaining space on the inserted disc is almost never correct. When I know that there is room for one or more of the scheduled program(s) at the recording speed(s) I've selected, the menu still indicates that it can't record the program(s). But it does record it/them without problem. (The "OK" portion of the Schedule menu on my DMR-ES15, DMR-ES30V and DMR-ES35V models have always been accurate.)

I have to admit that I've not tried your test routine as I never use RW or RAM media and my DMR-EZ17 is set to record about six hours per week at EP (six hour setting). On older Panasonics, through careful scheduling and sometimes between two machines running in tandem, or with use of Flexible Recording to fit a recording to a partially filled DVD, I seldom (knowingly) exceed DVD media recording capacity. In those instances where I have exceeded the recording capacity I have found most, but not all older Panasonics just conclude recording without adverse consequences. But there have been a very few times where this occasioned lock-ups and/or a failed disc that can not be finalized.

And the bugs go on . . .

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

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post #223 of 440 Old 01-17-2008, 02:43 PM
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In the name of testing I'll give it a try. With all the repeats it's not like I'm using the machine that much anyway. Probably a good time to experiment. I won't blame you if it never wakes up, but you'd think Panasonic would have fixed this bug. After all the EZ-17 is more than 3 years after the es-30...which had that issue....
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post #224 of 440 Old 01-19-2008, 03:01 PM
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Anybody know what bitrate the audio is recorded in the ez17? Does it allow any adjustment or is it fixed?

EDIT: Fwiw, some test recordings from the digital tuner suggests that the ez17 employs 128 kb/s audio in ep mode and 256 kb/s audio for lp/sp mode. I presume xp mode will be 256 kb/s or higher, but I did not check. I don't know how they handle audio for FR mode, but I presume it would follow the same trends as ep/lp/sp/xp modes.

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post #225 of 440 Old 01-20-2008, 12:02 AM
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I also have this other observation, and I have no idea if it is normal behavior or another bug. I noticed that if you leave the player on, just doing nothing, it seems to "shutdown" by itself after some time period. I have no idea how long it takes, but I notice it has done so if I leave the house and then come back some time later. The important detail here is that when I come back to find it in this state, the red clock is never activated (even though it should be, and would be had I shut it off manually).

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post #226 of 440 Old 01-20-2008, 05:13 AM
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MrHanky-Not sure about your audio question, but the power down thing is something you can change in the setup. I have mine set for 2hrs, but I believe you can also select 6hrs or never turn off by itself.
I'm more worried about your red clock missing. That would tell me that it MAY not record your next scheduled program. That would be poor. Since you might see the machine off, and think everything was good to go with your next event! I can't remember if I ever tried to have the machine turn off by itself, and then see if it caught the next scheduled event(on second though I'm thinking maybe it did not record, you could try a test). If it didn't, I would call that another bug.
I sure wish Panasonic had NOT changed the EZ machines so they need to be OFF to start a scheduled event. On All my previous Panny DVDR's it doesn't matter if the DVDR is off or on, it will start a scheduled event. I sure liked this feature coming from VCR days, where all mine needed to be off. Seems like Panasonic took a step BACKWARDS with the EZ machines.
But remember the red clock on these EZ machines is not a reliable indication if the recording is going to actually work(at least in regards to the timer bug I've documented)
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post #227 of 440 Old 01-20-2008, 01:48 PM
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I was thinking this behavior plus the behavior you guys have been trying to solve may be related. Maybe there is something faulty about the automated shutdown function. I'm presuming that the ez17 needs to trigger a similar function (if not, the same function) when it is at the end of a scheduled recording. So maybe this is suggesting that if it has to shutdown automatically, it is not properly enabling the triggering/timing mechanism for the next recording. This would also explain how manually powering up/down the device after the 1st recording is an effective solution to ensuring the 2nd recording takes care of itself (because it then effectively becomes the "1st" recording, at that point).

Another thing I wonder if you guys have tried- what if the 2nd recording is scheduled to be immediately following the first recording (so that no complete shutdown is allowed to occur)? Do you find that the 2nd recording then occurs reliably? I know this would not help you in actual circumstances if the scheduled times are not sequential. I was just wondering if you had tried a sequential scheduling scenario to see if it behaves differently. If so, that would be another indication that the timer bug has something to do with the auto-shutdown process.

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post #228 of 440 Old 01-20-2008, 03:44 PM
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That's a maybe.......Actually for the most part sequential recording seem to record all the time. It mainly seems to be after the machine is off, and then goes across midnight. Then the next recording is not likely to record, without the power cycle.
I said maybe, because one of my U99 errors that locked up the machine, and made me exchange the machine, happened on a sequential recording. I had an event 7-8pm on one channel, then 8-9pm on another channel. The first event finished fine, then during the post recording mini finalizing the machine displayed 000000 for several minutes, followed by U99, which never cleared.
I don't think this is related to the bug, rather just a fluke.
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post #229 of 440 Old 01-22-2008, 08:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjeff View Post

In the name of testing I'll give it a try. With all the repeats it's not like I'm using the machine that much anyway. Probably a good time to experiment. I won't blame you if it never wakes up, but you'd think Panasonic would have fixed this bug. After all the EZ-17 is more than 3 years after the es-30...which had that issue....

When I tried the test of programming in a scheduled event and turning off the DVDR on both my EZ-17 and ES-25. They both passed the test. That is the little red clock icon never came on, and the machine powered up normally the next day. So from this one time test, I'll assume the problem is more with the es-30 than the EZ-17 or ES-25. Note I only tried this one time, but on my es-30 it seemed to lock up all the time doing this test.
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post #230 of 440 Old 01-27-2008, 11:19 PM
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I have several DMR-ES35V, DMR-ES15 and DMR-EZ17 models.

Six of those I have opened for DVD drive spindle, hub, and lens cleaning have varying degrees of leakage of the largest electrolytic capacitor on the right chassis motherboard (on combo recorders) or the chassis motherboard (on DVD recorders without VHS sections). These are still functional recorders even with the leakage but I realize that these capacitors will need to be replaced at some point.

This brings up my question. Does the choice of the Quick Start "on" or "off" setting have any relation to longevity of electrolytic capacitors?

"A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME WILL SMELL AS SWEET. BUT IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT WHATEVER WE CHOOSE TO CALL A ROSE WILL POSSESS THE ROSE'S FRAGRANCE."

--Benjamin Breckinridge Warfield (1917)
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post #231 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 05:31 AM
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If they were easy to get at, you could measure and see if there was any voltage on the caps when the unit was off, then remeasure with QS on. If turning QS on made them have voltage on them constantly, it could shorten there life.
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post #232 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 09:22 AM
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I'm waiting on delivery of my first DVD recorder, an EZ17, and have been reading the owner's manual online in preparation for initial set-up. I have basic cable(no set top box) daisychained, [cable from wall to 1st vcr rf in] [1st vcr rf out to 2nd vcr rf in] [2nd vcr rf out to rf in on a Philips 32" LCD HDTV.] Whenever I want to watch something from my VCRs, I change my TV channel to 3. I'm trying to figure out how to include the EZ17 into this mess. I don't see anything about switching the TV to a certain channel anywhere in the set-up of the EZ17, so I assume the RF signal is just being passed through the EZ17. Is this correct? If that's the case, even if I am only using the EZ17 as a tuner, would I need to switch my TV to whichever component input has the cables coming from the EZ17's component output? Hope someone can decipher this, because I sure can't. LOL

Danny in Yorktown, VA
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post #233 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 10:01 AM
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The RF output from the EZ-17 only carries the signal input into the RF in connector. It DOES NOT carry any out put from the recorder, either from the tuner or from the DVD.

In order to see the output from the recorder, you need to connect the outputs from the back of the recorder to the TV, either the composite video (yellow connector), the S-video connector, or the component video (green, blue and red connectors). Plus you have to connect the audio out (red and white connectors).

Component is the best, followed by S-video and composite.

RG
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post #234 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 10:13 AM
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hokiewolf, What kind & "HOW MANY INPUTS" does you tv set have?
Yes, you are correct the EZ17's Antenna Output only a Passes on the antenna signal just like a splitter would & it doesn't send any A/V directly from the recorder.

For your tv to receive a picture from the recorder it must get it though one on the TVs Audio / Video Inputs.

ANTENNA CONNECTIONS:
Line Coming Into House Goes directly into the EZ17 Ant. IN
EZ17 Ant. OUT goes to VCR 1 Ant. IN
VCR 1 Ant. OUT goes to VCR 2 Ant. IN
VCR 2 Ant. OUT goes to TV Ant. IN

AUDIO/VIDEO CONNECTIONS:
EZ17 A/V OUT goes to TV A/V IN
VCR 1 A/V OUT goes to VCR 2 A/V IN
VCR 2 A/V OUT goes to EZ17 A/V IN

The way I have it Daisy Chained you can record from either of the VCRs to the EZ17 incase you want to dub Tapes to DVDs.

You can also still watch the VCRs on CH3 or from the INPUT on the EZ17.

TV - Same as before
EZ17 Set TV to Input
VCR 1 & 2 Set TV to Channel 3 Same as before

(You can also get VCR 1 & VCR 2 by setting the EZ17 to INPUT)
(To WATCH/Record VCR 1 set VCR 2 to INPUT)

For Picture Quality a lot is going to depend on how strong your Antenna Signal is too because it's really been split by the time it gets to the TV connection & that's why you want to connect the antenna cable 1st to the EZ17 so it can record the best signal possible.
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post #235 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 01:19 PM
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I agree, I would really never watch any of your VCR's through CH3 output. You will get better PQ using composite connections, even for the VCR's. If your TV only has one composite, just hook up the EZ-17 to that input, and continue to watch your VCR's through CH3.
Don't be tempted to hook up your EZ-17 through the line input of either of your VCR's. I tried that, thinking I could use the RF modulator of the VCR. Well it didn't work. I kept getting macrovision problems, even though I was not trying to record the signal, only pass it through the VCR. Actually one of my VCR's, a newer Sammy, allowed the pass through signal w/o macrovision problem, and would only get dark if I tried to record the signal, but it's better to feed the TV with the DVDR signal direct, and avoid the VCR pass through.
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post #236 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 05:34 PM
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I split the cable coming from the wall & feed the HDTV with one side & the EZ17 with the other. EZ17 Ant Out goes to ES20 (another Panny DVD recorder). ES20 Ant Out feeds S-VHS recorder. IOW the 3 recorders are daisy chained. I seem to recall passing the RF thru the ES20 & then to the HDTV, but this caused picture problems. That's when I decided to split the original signal from the wall (and before I got the EZ17).

The EZ17 & ES20 component outs go to the HDTV, and their optical outs go to the receiver. The S-VHS S-Video out goes to the HDTV, and L&R audio go to the receiver.

ES20 S-Video goes to the EZ17, along with L&R audio. This lets me copy a disc. I've copied tapes, but I have to swap cables around. I guess I should get a few more cables.
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post #237 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 09:00 PM
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Mike99, I still like the idea of having the Main Cable TV Line going directly into the recorder first (The Recorder That Is Going To Be Used The Most).

That way you are not recording a split signal but the best possible signal available without Amps. from that line.

In other setups if I needed more antenna connections I would then use a splitter on the line that came out of the first recorder & if the signal wasn't up to par then I would add a Signal Amp. onto the line coming out of the recorder & work from there.

There are really a whole bunch of ways to daisy chain the antenna cables so you really have to experiment to see which works best & I hate to say it but the best is really a Signal Amp. with enough outputs on it to go to each piece of gear you have so the signal remains exactly the same to each item that needs an antenna connection.

But that's just me. If your happy with the signal you record then that's all that counts.
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post #238 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 09:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rgazzara View Post

The RF output from the EZ-17 only carries the signal input into the RF in connector. It DOES NOT carry any out put from the recorder, either from the tuner or from the DVD.

My cable splits at the wall and 1/2 feeds two VCRs and the LCD HDTV, the other 1/2 feeds only my cable modem. Since the EZ17 RF connectors are just passing the signal through, I wonder if I could put the EZ17 first in line in front of my cable modem(for high speed internet). If my internet speed suffers, I'll know it's a no go, but I'm curious if anyone else has ever hooked their DVD recorder up on the same line that eventually feeds their cable modem.
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post #239 of 440 Old 01-28-2008, 10:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill1313 View Post

hokiewolf, What kind & "HOW MANY INPUTS" does you tv set have?
Yes, you are correct the EZ17's Antenna Output only a Passes on the antenna signal just like a splitter would & it doesn't send any A/V directly from the recorder.

Bill, AV1 and AV2 on the back of the TV have both component inputs as well as composite inputs for video and L/R audio. AV3 and the Side Panel each have composite inputs as well as an S-video input. The TV also has an HDMI input on the back, but I don't think that would apply to the EZ17, would it?

Bill, I want to thank you and the others for your detailed explanations. You gave me exactly the information I so poorly requested.
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post #240 of 440 Old 01-29-2008, 12:36 AM
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hokiewolf,

Correct, the EZ17 does not have an HDMI output.

I also suggest trying both component 480i and component 480p output. For me the 480i looked a bit better. IOW the TV was a doing a better job at converting the signal than the EZ17. The same held true for the ES20, which others also previously commented on. However I only noticed this on programs I recorded. There did not seem to be a difference with commercial DVDs.

"Way back when", I did try having the TV daisy chained at the end of the ES 20 and/or S-VHS and the picture was distorted, at least on some of the channels. I previously did try passing thru the EZ17 then to the TV just to see what would happen and all looked OK. But after my earlier experiment I just felt better having the TV get a direct feed vs going thru another component. A Comcast tech was out to do some troubleshooting and checked my signal strength and said it was very good, so I felt my split would be OK. Of course YMMV. Try hooking up your EZ17 before and after your main split & compare the PQ. There may be no perceptable difference.
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