Microprose MPI-500 - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 202 Old 05-23-2008, 09:28 PM
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I've already used both my coupons, so I can still purchase the MPI-500PT without a coupon and still get the $59.99 price and free shipping, right?
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post #62 of 202 Old 05-23-2008, 10:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tried View Post

I've been following the converter box forums for months now trying to sort all this out - still don't have it.

I know this has already been answered but I thought I'd throw my two cents in.

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Originally Posted by tried View Post

1. Could someone please explain the purpose and advantage of the "pass through" feature on a converter box?

You may need to receive analog signals even after 2/17/09. Low-power TV stations aren't necessarily going to convert on that date, and/or you may have your own equipment that outputs analog signals, such as a VCR, satellite receiver, etc. Pass-through lets you keep receiving analog signals without having to disconnect the converter box or futz with switches, signal splitters, or a rat's nest of video cables.

But pass-through can help even in a digital-only environment. It lets you "daisy chain" two converter boxes
so each can tune a different digital channel (say, the first converter box for a VCR and the second for a TV).

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Originally Posted by tried View Post

2. I have a TV with a built in VCR. Could you tell me how a converter box will work, or not work with this TV/VCR unit? Will a converter box on the antenna line automatically allow the VCR portion to work with the converted signal?

Yes, but when the converter box is "on" (not in pass-through mode) your TV/VCR will only receive one channel - the channel the converter box is tuned to. So you won't be able to record one channel while watching another.

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Originally Posted by tried View Post

3. Here's the one I am really confused about. I have three other TV's with external VCR units used for time shifting of movies. Will I need a converter box for each TV and a second converter box for each VCR, a total of six?

Maybe. If you want to record one digital channel while watching another, you'll need two converter boxes for each TV/VCR pair. Otherwise, one converter box per TV/VCR should suffice.

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Originally Posted by tried View Post

Then I think theres the question of how all three remotes, TV, VCR, Converter box, are going to work to control the intended piece of equipment without controlling a non intended piece of equipment. Will I have to buy a converter box for the VCR that is a different manufacture than the converter box that is connected to the corresponding TV?

Yes; if you connect two converter boxes to one setup (one box for the VCR and one for the TV), they should be different so the remotes won't conflict. Keep in mind that several "different" brands are actually the same underneath (e.g., Magnavox/Philco/Sylvania are basically identical, as are Insignia/Microprose/Zenith) so their remotes may still conflict.

You should connect the first box to the VCR with A/V cables, while sending the RF output to the second box. A Philco/Sylvania/Magnavox with pass-through sounds ideal for the VCR's converter box since these boxes can enable pass-through even while turned on. Another good VCR box would be the upcoming Dish Network DTVPal, which has a timer (you can set it to tune to desired channels at specific times), but it's not on the market yet.

If your TV has A/V inputs, use those to connect either the VCR or the second converter box, and use the RF input to connect the other device. If your TV only has an RF input, daisy chain the RF signal in this order: first (VCR) box, second (TV) box, VCR, TV. (The VCR will record from the first box via the A/V inputs, not the RF input.)
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post #63 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 12:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post

You should connect the first box to the VCR with A/V cables, while sending the RF output to the second box. A Philco/Sylvania/Magnavox with pass-through sounds ideal for the VCR's converter box since these boxes can enable pass-through even while turned on.

The Philco/Magnavox ONLY can enable pass-through when turned on and you have enabled it in the menu.

This is another reason why I recommend the MicroProse MPI-500PT* because it's PassThru mode worked different.
It was enabled by setting the box into standby mode by either pressing the power off button on the remote
or on the converter box it is a lot easier to use then the Philco/Magnavox and also saved energy.

I wish the NTIA would hurry up and add the MicroProse MPI-500PT* to the list.
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post #64 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 10:11 AM
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...The Microprose does however provide the best passthru option for those with EXPIRING COUPONS who cannot WAIT for the Zenith DTT901, unless you found another option?...

According to the manual pass-thru is on when the Microprose is in standby mode. http://www.microprosesystems.com/man...0PT-Manual.pdf
This would be great for my 85 year old mother or anyone who does not want
to deal with submenus.

My question is how is this different from other CECBs when they are on standby?
I found this Sanyo Pass-Thru Specs for the Microprose.
http://www.microprosesystems.com/man...0AL_080521.pdf
I'm geek challenged and have no idea how to interpret this info.
Could it be there is a y splitter some where in the unit?
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post #65 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 12:50 PM
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I'm confused about something.

If a CECB enables RF passthrough when it's on, you can have the ATSC channel to which the box is tuned going out the A/V outputs (or the S-video output if the box has it) while the RF signal continues out the RF output.  Therefore it can, for example, send one ATSC channel to a TV to watch and the RF from the antenna to a VCR that is recording an NTSC channel.  Another example would be the reverse: the A/V cables go to a VCR recording an ATSC channel and the RF continues to a TV.

But if a CECB provides passthrough only when it's off, how does that help in a chain?  Yes, it makes it more like the traditional VCR, and it saves power by not needing to be turned on to pass the RF signal, so I do see some advantages to the arrangement, but it renders the box unhelpful for daisy-chaining.  The only output is the same as the input, so you might as well leave the CECB out of the setup.

I suppose that the best of both worlds would be a box that passes its RF input through when it's off and *can* pass it through while it's on.  Does such a beast exist?
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post #66 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 12:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dattier View Post

I'm confused about something.

If a CECB enables RF passthrough when it's on, you can have the ATSC channel to which the box is tuned going out the A/V outputs (or the S-video output if the box has it) while the RF signal continues out the RF output.* Therefore it can, for example, send one ATSC channel to a TV to watch and the RF from the antenna to a VCR that is recording an NTSC channel.* Another example would be the reverse: the A/V cables go to a VCR recording an ATSC channel and the RF continues to a TV.

But if a CECB provides passthrough only when it's off, how does that help in a chain?* Yes, it makes it more like the traditional VCR, and it saves power by not needing to be turned on to pass the RF signal, so I do see some advantages to the arrangement, but it renders the box unhelpful for daisy-chaining.* The only output is the same as the input, so you might as well leave the CECB out of the setup.

I suppose that the best of both worlds would be a box that passes its RF input through when it's off and *can* pass it through while it's on.* Does such a beast exist?


NTIA should have allowed NTSC tuner(most of these boxes chip tuners have the capability built in for NTSC btw) that would have eliminated the whole
pass through issue.. and followed the law mandating such in tuners..
Oh well...


John
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post #67 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 01:30 PM
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This morning I noticed that the link to the Microprose webstore is missing from the product page, and there are no messages (news) either. Anyone know what's going on?
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post #68 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 01:36 PM
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When I was looking at the product description on their website, I noticed a link to user reviews. One of the 3 raved about the pass-through feature. I wonder how someone got a box to review. these didn't seem to be professional reviewers....maybe beta testers?

Dan
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post #69 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 02:03 PM
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One of the reviewers, Doug Malloy, is a member here. See his post at http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...6#post13839426
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post #70 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malouff View Post

The Philco/Magnavox ONLY can enable pass-through when turned on and you have enabled it in the menu.

I know. I was only recommending the Philco/Magnavox for the specific situation of using two converter boxes for a VCR hooked to a TV. In that particular case you'd want to have RF passed through the first box to the second even while the first box is turned on and sending the channel you want to record to the VCR's A/V inputs, which the Philco/Magnavox does.

In most cases the Microprose solution will be better. Simply turn it on to watch digital TV, or turn it off to watch analog TV. The Philco/Magnavox is much more cumbersome because you have to go into the setup menu to enable RF pass-through, and you have to leave the box on even when you're watching analog TV.

The extra energy usage isn't a lot - about 6 watts more with the box on than with it off, or about 1 kW-hour per week if you leave it on 24/7, which works out to about 50 cents per month on my electric bill. But it's still annoying because it's completely unnecessary.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Malouff View Post

I wish the NTIA would hurry up and add the MicroProse MPI-500PT* to the list.

I agree. The minor change of adding pass-through shouldn't require a complete re-evaluation of the box from scratch. The NTIA seems to be acting in a deliberately anti-consumer fashion with this issue.
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post #71 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 08:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dattier View Post

I'm confused about something.

If a CECB enables RF passthrough when it's on, you can have the ATSC channel to which the box is tuned going out the A/V outputs (or the S-video output if the box has it) while the RF signal continues out the RF output. Therefore it can, for example, send one ATSC channel to a TV to watch and the RF from the antenna to a VCR that is recording an NTSC channel. Another example would be the reverse: the A/V cables go to a VCR recording an ATSC channel and the RF continues to a TV.

But if a CECB provides passthrough only when it's off, how does that help in a chain? Yes, it makes it more like the traditional VCR, and it saves power by not needing to be turned on to pass the RF signal, so I do see some advantages to the arrangement, but it renders the box unhelpful for daisy-chaining. The only output is the same as the input, so you might as well leave the CECB out of the setup.

You're exactly right. That's why I recommended the Philco/Magnavox for the daisy chain situation: it can provide passthrough while turned on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dattier View Post

I suppose that the best of both worlds would be a box that passes its RF input through when it's off and *can* pass it through while it's on. Does such a beast exist?

Not yet, as far as I know. It'd be easy enough to do: they'd just need an "Analog/Digital" button on the remote, similar to the "TV/VCR" button on most VCR remotes. Maybe one of the not-yet-available brands has figured that out, but we'll just have to wait and see.
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post #72 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DITTOTEX View Post

...The Microprose does however provide the best passthru option for those with EXPIRING COUPONS who cannot WAIT for the Zenith DTT901, unless you found another option?...

Well, it would, except the NTIA is being obstructionist and won't let you use your coupon for Microprose's pass-through model

For those with expiring coupons, the only option appears to be the Philco/Magnavox, which has pass-through but with some quirky drawbacks. (A few of the Philco's drawbacks can be gotten around with a good universal remote, but that'll eat up part of the $40 you saved with the coupon! If you're interested see my post at the Philco thread.)
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post #73 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 10:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post

...

Thank you.
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post #74 of 202 Old 05-24-2008, 11:33 PM
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Have you guys noticed the NTIA does not like any of the LG based boxes that feature Analog PassThru - Zenith DTT901*, Microprose MPI-500PT*, and the Insignia NS-DXA1-APT* none have not been approved by the NTIA?
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post #75 of 202 Old 05-25-2008, 12:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malouff View Post

Have you guys noticed the NTIA does not like any of the LG based boxes that feature Analog PassThru - Zenith DTT901*, Microprose MPI-500PT*, and the Insignia NS-DXA1-APT* none have not been approved by the NTIA?


I seriously doubt it's a like or dislike issue, probably just waiting in the
que for approval. "Pass through" models are a recent pheonomena or
afterthought for most of the manufacturers of these boxes.

Further, do you know if these boxes have even been submitted for
approval yet?
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post #76 of 202 Old 05-25-2008, 12:44 AM
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The ABT website is now offering to take pre-orders for the Zenith DTT901 for estimated July 2008 shipment @$67.00 with free shipping. (That's not bad--compare to $59.99 Circuit City price plus $7.01 shipping.) CAUTION: The DTT901 is NOT yet listed on the NTIA list of approved CECB boxes! Microprose has gotten into trouble for taking coupon pre-orders for its unlisted MicroProse MPI-500PT pass-thru box. NTIA listing of the Zenith DTT901 can't be far behind, however. ABT appears to be planning to accept coupons for telephone or in store orders only. If the DTT901 gets listed soon, you can use your expiring coupons on a DTT901 pre-order from ABT. See full specs and description at:

http://www.abt.com/product/18510.html

Quote:
"Zenith DTT901
$67.00

Zenith LG Black Digital TV Tuner DTV Converter Box - DTT901/ Converts Digital-To-Analog/ On Screen Program Information/ Easy Remote Control/ Advanced Closed Captioning/ 4 Aspect Ratio Modes/ Black Finish/ ETA- July 2008
New Item- Available For Pre-Ordering | Free Shipping

Note: At this time Abt is unable to accept NTIA coupons online. To use your NTIA coupon, please call or come to our retail store to purchase this item."
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post #77 of 202 Old 05-25-2008, 08:56 AM
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All of these LG Manufactures with "Pass through" models are not stupid of course they have filed a NOI with the NTIA.

These modifications to an existing CECB should have been an accelerated approval because they just needed to show the NTIA what modifications were made. We have known about these modifications for quite some time in these forums and the NTIA has as well.

I have also seen the pre-order for the Zenith DTT901* and would wait for NTIA approval before any order as this is the same thing that happened to MicroProse.
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post #78 of 202 Old 05-25-2008, 09:52 AM
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One difference, I saw Zenith/Insignia in the FCC approval list for their part modification and model number changes, and they submitted testing. I could have missed it, but I did not see Microprose doing that with the PT model.

If the NTIA did nothing more than look at Wiki for potential features issues, they would have found this and other approval issues (e.g., MaxMedia) much sooner. I feel bad for those of you who were counting on this box to use on expiring coupons.
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post #79 of 202 Old 05-25-2008, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TalkingRat View Post

If the NTIA did nothing more than look at Wiki for potential features issues, they would have found this and other approval issues (e.g., MaxMedia) much sooner. I feel bad for those of you who were counting on this box to use on expiring coupons.

Looks like it's a moot point anyhow. I just tried to order one (without a coupon) and Microprose's webstore is now saying they are out of stock By the time they're back in stock, maybe they'll have NTIA approval. But they probably won't be $59.99 with free shipping anymore.
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post #80 of 202 Old 05-25-2008, 02:49 PM
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A few days ago when the Microprose factory website had listed the MPI-500PT as available and coupon qualified, rather than order one online, I called their 800 number and got their voice mail message machine. I beleive my first call attempt was on May 19th. When I did not receive a return call in two days, I called again on May 21st and left a message again that I wanted to place an order. They did not return my call a second time and then I noticed that they changed their website to indicate that the MPI-500PT was not coupon qualified as has been recently pointed out on this forum.

My question is why do they fail to return calls so one can place an order?
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post #81 of 202 Old 05-25-2008, 06:07 PM
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Perhaps, they have nothing to order.
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post #82 of 202 Old 05-26-2008, 01:18 PM
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I notice that today, only one box is listed (the non-PT). Yesterday, both PT and non-PT were listed, and there was a link to customer reviews of the PT.

Woops. I'm incorrect. The reviews are still there with the PT box. I just approached it using the wrong links. Strangely, the two options are with or without coupon, and the reviews are attached to the "with coupon" option. I thought that perhaps the PT box could be purchased without coupon, since this wouldn't involve NTIA blessings.

Dan
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post #83 of 202 Old 05-26-2008, 02:45 PM
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You are referring to these reviews:
Chris Townsend - This is a great box, works perfectly, does everything they advertised. Very happy, thanks.
Doug Malloy - Its essentially a Zenith box inside, but looks like more up to date components, plus the tv pass through feature.
Pass through is the easiest of any box - just turn the box to standby mode by pressing the standby button or the power button on the remote - thats it, not complicated procedures and confusion like the Philco box.
Sherry - I am very happy with the converter. I like the fancy screens and menus, very fast to find channels
and easy to setup, thank you.

The reviews are still attached to the "with coupon" because they will change it to the PT model again if they are approved .
You are also forgetting something important at the webstore
THIS ITEM IS IN STORE TEST MODE - DO NOT LIVE ORDER

They can't take orders because of NTIA approval and getting a notice from the NTIA.
Strange how MaxMedia-USA/ConvertMy.TV never got so much attention from the NTIA.
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post #84 of 202 Old 05-26-2008, 03:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malouff View Post

You are referring to these reviews:
Chris Townsend - This is a great box, works perfectly, does everything they advertised. Very happy, thanks.
Doug Malloy - Its essentially a Zenith box inside, but looks like more up to date components, plus the tv pass through feature.
Pass through is the easiest of any box - just turn the box to standby mode by pressing the standby button or the power button on the remote - thats it, not complicated procedures and confusion like the Philco box.
Sherry - I am very happy with the converter. I like the fancy screens and menus, very fast to find channels
and easy to setup, thank you.

The reviews are still attached to the "with coupon" because they will change it to the PT model again if they are approved .
You are also forgetting something important at the webstore
THIS ITEM IS IN STORE TEST MODE - DO NOT LIVE ORDER

They can't take orders because of NTIA approval and getting a notice from the NTIA.
Strange how MaxMedia-USA/ConvertMy.TV never got so much attention from the NTIA.

exactly
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post #85 of 202 Old 05-26-2008, 04:28 PM
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How are you guys getting to the webstore?? The link is gone from the Microprose product page.
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post #86 of 202 Old 05-26-2008, 08:38 PM
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See my third post below to see the Microprose webstore link for both the MPI-500 and MPI-500PT. According to the posting rules, I need to have 3 posts before I can post a URL link.
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post #87 of 202 Old 05-26-2008, 08:41 PM
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See my next and forth post below for the webstore link.
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post #88 of 202 Old 05-26-2008, 08:45 PM
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Finally I am able to post the webstore link for both the MPI-500 and MPI-500PT Microprose Converters below:
http://www.microprosesystems.com/sto...p?idCategory=6

They may be building a very good DTV converter but my personal opinion is that the Microprose website is somewhat amateurish and confusing.
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post #89 of 202 Old 05-26-2008, 09:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whemme View Post

Finally I am able to post the webstore link for both the MPI-500 and MPI-500PT Microprose Converters below:
http://www.microprosesystems.com/sto...p?idCategory=6

They may be building a very good DTV converter but my personal opinion is that the Microprose website is somewhat amateurish and confusing.

looks like just the MPI-500 is for sale no passthru yet
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post #90 of 202 Old 05-28-2008, 10:06 AM
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Has anyone had contact with MicroProse since the Holiday weekend? I ordered a MPI-500(w/pass-thru) using a coupon last week & they cancelled my order online. My guess is they have no MPI-500's to sell, only a ton of non-CECB listed MPI-500PT's. From a NTIA alert I found onlne it's really obvious MicroP has pissed them off!

I assume the folks at MicroP are busy trying to patch things up ASAP with the NTIA. I've called & emailed MicroP numerous times about my order, but to no avail! I've checked their website, nothing new there either. So anyone else have a clue how they're progressing?
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