PVI VeCOAX MicroMod - Experiences? - Page 2 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #31 of 170 Old 02-01-2017, 04:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpalmer2k View Post
I finally figured it out. It has to be a 2gb or less USB drive made by someone other can Sandisk. I had a horrible time finding one that would work. Finally I used my wife's ancient 1gb flash drive formatted with a FAT file system and it read it right away.
The MicroMod probably uses a fairly primitive checksum method to verify the validity of the firmware file, and probably can't deal with anything else on the drive. That is a known problem with some TV's that have USB update ports.
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post #32 of 170 Old 03-24-2017, 11:44 AM
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Hello everyone,

We just got a PVI VeCOAX MicroMod, and we're looking forward to getting it up and running. Unfortunately, we got the one defaulted to QAM and we need it in ATSC. PVI support has been unresponsive for the last 24 hours, and we are approaching our deadline. Would anyone be able to send me the files for ATSC configuration? I tried PMing some of the folks here that mentioned they had them, but since I'm a newbie with a low post count, it won't allow me to PM most users.

Any help would be appreciated.

Philip
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post #33 of 170 Old 03-24-2017, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip Loftin View Post
Hello everyone,

We just got a PVI VeCOAX MicroMod, and we're looking forward to getting it up and running. Unfortunately, we got the one defaulted to QAM and we need it in ATSC. PVI support has been unresponsive for the last 24 hours, and we are approaching our deadline. Would anyone be able to send me the files for ATSC configuration? I tried PMing some of the folks here that mentioned they had them, but since I'm a newbie with a low post count, it won't allow me to PM most users.

Any help would be appreciated.

Philip
Here are the instructions I got from PVI when I requested the firmware. You can download the firmware from my Dropbox by clicking here. Be warned you are going to have to find an older, very small, USB flash drive. I ended up finding an old 1gb FAT formated drive and it worked.

Here is the "quick start guide" another user was kind enough to share.

Code:
Thank you for contacting PVI tech support

Please unzip and copy the attached file to a standard USB memory pen ( NOT a sandisk or disk drives )

THE FILE NAME ON THE ROOT OF THE PEN MUST BE  update.jic  - do not change it !

Then plug it into the USB Port of your MICROMOD

1) The Display will show the pen is initializing
2) Press THE LOCK / ENABLE button
3) Navigate with the down arrow to USB then click ENTER
4) Navigate to UPDATE then click ENTER and then enter and select Yes to begin the updatge
5) It will count up to 99% 
6) When it is finished POWER OFF / POWER ON the unit

IT IS MOST IMPORTANT YOU TURN OFF THE MICROMOD EVERY TIME ONE UPGRADE FINISH TO LOAD
REMEMBER TO TURN IT OFF AND ON PRIOR TO ANY OTHER OPERATION

Follow the QUICK SETUP pdf to configure your micromod as needed

Please let me know

Thank you

Best Regards

PVI tech Support

Last edited by cpalmer2k; 03-24-2017 at 12:05 PM.
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post #34 of 170 Old 03-24-2017, 11:57 AM
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Thank you so much cpalmer2k! I'm going to try this out right away -- as soon as I find a small USB flash drive.
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post #35 of 170 Old 03-24-2017, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Philip Loftin View Post
Thank you so much cpalmer2k! I'm going to try this out right away -- as soon as I find a small USB flash drive.
Good luck. Finding one was a challenge. I updated my post with the "Quick Start" guide as well if you need that.
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post #36 of 170 Old 03-24-2017, 12:08 PM
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I actually found an old 1 GB generic, made-in-China drive that I cleaned off. Formatted it to FAT and dropped the file. Started the update process, and it seemed to freeze at 'Please Wait...32%' during the update. Now I'm holding my breath...
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post #37 of 170 Old 03-24-2017, 12:22 PM
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It still wasn't moving, so I pulled the plug and after rebooting it shows ATSC! I don't want to jinx it, but I think I'm good and will know for sure later tonight. Thanks again, cpalmer2k!
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post #38 of 170 Old 03-24-2017, 08:36 PM
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PVI support is third party, but it responds fairly well to emails, with varying response times. They eventually send the files requested by email attachment. The downloads site is useless with only a couple of older files.

It's not unusual for firmware updates of any type to hang when they finish. Most firmware has some sort of checksum, so if it works at all, you most likely have the whole thing intact.
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post #39 of 170 Old 03-24-2017, 08:44 PM
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They did finally reply later this evening. And since the original upload 'seemed' to only be partially successful, and since the encoded video was not being detected on my tv or DVR, I decided to retry with the files they sent me. It went all the way through to 100%. But after restarting it, now the alarm and USB lights just stay on, and the top line of the LCD is filled with 'blocks', and it never boots. I'm stuck. I've updated my ticket, buy any thoughts from you experienced folks on here?

Thanks,
Philip
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post #40 of 170 Old 03-25-2017, 08:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Philip Loftin View Post
They did finally reply later this evening. And since the original upload 'seemed' to only be partially successful, and since the encoded video was not being detected on my tv or DVR, I decided to retry with the files they sent me. It went all the way through to 100%. But after restarting it, now the alarm and USB lights just stay on, and the top line of the LCD is filled with 'blocks', and it never boots. I'm stuck. I've updated my ticket, buy any thoughts from you experienced folks on here?

Thanks,
Philip
It sounds like the file you received was corrupt or did not copy to the USB drive fully. File attachments can be corrupted in an email chain. I can't remember now if PVI support zips the file attachments, which is the best way to send them, since the unzip process will fail if a file is corrupted.

It's possible that a good firmware file would load at power-on from the USB drive. Possibly try that with the file you downloaded from the dropbox link from Cpalmer2k.
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post #41 of 170 Old 03-26-2017, 06:06 PM
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I retried the file from Cpalmer2k and turned it back on. No such luck on that option. It just immediately goes to alarm/USB lights on and nothing else happens. I may have to send it in for service unless the PVI team can tell me a way to force it to read the USB drive in this state. The files they provided were in a link to their support site, and it had downloads links from there.
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post #42 of 170 Old 03-26-2017, 07:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip Loftin View Post
I retried the file from Cpalmer2k and turned it back on. No such luck on that option. It just immediately goes to alarm/USB lights on and nothing else happens. I may have to send it in for service unless the PVI team can tell me a way to force it to read the USB drive in this state. The files they provided were in a link to their support site, and it had downloads links from there.
The support web site is a mess and doesn't make a good impression. I have seen on it the link to more files, on a site called quickinstallnow.com, but it requires entering a 13 digit number from the bar code label, and mine doesn't have 13 digits.

They may have setup boot files available. Its also possible there are switches inside on the circuit board. Upgrade instructions for older models require changing the switch settings.
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post #43 of 170 Old 06-13-2017, 06:14 PM
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Was this ever solved? I'm thinking of buying a used Micromod 2, but it too is QAM and I need ATSC, at least initially. It sounds like a real pain to switch. I'm assuming there's another file for switching from ATSC back to QAM?

Is the MicroMod 2 just the same as the MicroMod but with two channels instead of one? Of course with two channels, maybe switching the outputs uses different files, since there are two outputs.

The used Micromod 2 doesn't have any documentation with it. Is there somewhere I can download a User Manual?
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post #44 of 170 Old 06-13-2017, 07:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Maike13 View Post
Was this ever solved? I'm thinking of buying a used Micromod 2, but it too is QAM and I need ATSC, at least initially. It sounds like a real pain to switch. I'm assuming there's another file for switching from ATSC back to QAM?

Is the MicroMod 2 just the same as the MicroMod but with two channels instead of one? Of course with two channels, maybe switching the outputs uses different files, since there are two outputs.

The used Micromod 2 doesn't have any documentation with it. Is there somewhere I can download a User Manual?
The Micromod 2 is a dual channel version of the Micromod, but should not be confused with the new Minimod 2, which has only one channel, but adds features such as the ability to select ATSC or QAM in setup, without re-flashing the firmware:

http://www.provideoinstruments.com/1...OD-2_p_17.html

They have a strange web presence, with overlapping web sites with different items, an even odder support site with links to nowhere. However they do answer questions and will probably email you the manuals. (Different manuals for ATSC and QAM). You can register here:

http://pviusa.kayako.com/
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post #45 of 170 Old 06-13-2017, 08:02 PM
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I'm in the same boat you are. I just purchased one of these "used" VeCoax 2 channel models and am expecting the headaches to begin as soon as it arrives.
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post #46 of 170 Old 06-13-2017, 09:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Channel99 View Post
The Micromod 2 is a dual channel version of the Micromod, but should not be confused with the new Minimod 2, which has only one channel, but adds features such as the ability to select ATSC or QAM in setup, without re-flashing the firmware:

They have a strange web presence, with overlapping web sites with different items, an even odder support site with links to nowhere. However they do answer questions and will probably email you the manuals. (Different manuals for ATSC and QAM). You can register here:
Thanks for the reply. I'll see if I can get a manual from them.
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post #47 of 170 Old 06-13-2017, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by cpalmer2k View Post
I'm in the same boat you are. I just purchased one of these "used" VeCoax 2 channel models and am expecting the headaches to begin as soon as it arrives.
Thanks for the reply. I'd love to hear how you get on with it. I'd particularly like to know how you switch the RF output. The spec sheet is a bit ambiguous as to how you switch from QAM to ATSC. It says "Switch Via Software" which sounds like using a file on USB like the single channel version, but then goes on to say "Yes, can switch on-the-fly between RF Out TYPE. As example form USA QAM cable to USA ATSC Off Air - just select on the rf menu" which sounds like you can select from the internal MicroMod 2 menus, but could, I suppose, be referring to menus that come up when you run the usb software.
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post #48 of 170 Old 06-14-2017, 10:14 AM
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Well I requested a manual for the MicroMod 2 from PVI support so we'll see what happens.
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post #49 of 170 Old 06-14-2017, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by cpalmer2k View Post
I'm in the same boat you are. I just purchased one of these "used" VeCoax 2 channel models and am expecting the headaches to begin as soon as it arrives.
Thanks for the message. Unfortunately I can't reply because I don't have 15 posts yet. This seems pretty dumb. I can see not being allowed to initiate a message, but not being allowed to reply seems to penalizing the person who sent the message, which doesn't make too much sense. Anyway, PVI sent me some files this afternoon and, if you can message me with a way to get them to you, I can send you what PVI sent me.

Hope you see this.
Meanwhile I'll see if I can get my posts up to 15. Only 7 to go :-)
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post #50 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 05:49 AM
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I owe 2-CH VeCOAX for few days now and I shared my learning curve under link below.
One thing to remember about these modulators is that single channel models do not support Virtual Channel Table which may be a problem for some applications like mine. That's why I went with two channel version and this one works very well. The eBay sellout is a real bargain considering I paid triple the price for brand new unit. I just hope that eBay units have the right firmware and are still within warranty otherwise you may not be able to download alternate binary files from manufacturer website if needed. I could be wrong though depending on how they were registered after purchase. If they were at all. Good luck.

Now some technical info. There is no problem with the hdcp, everything works. The built in MPEG-2 coder maximum encoding rate is only 19.5Mbps whether for ATSC or QAM modes. For ATSC it is more than you need but for QAM may not. The manufacturer explains this limit by referring to 80Mbps total platform limit which splits into four channels of the platform they use in their more expensive products which results in about 20Mbps which is what limitation is. I would think 2 channel modulator would have 80 meg split in two so I could generate high bitrate streams in QAM mode that is obviously not a case for VeCOAX series and cannot be done. One thing to mention is that my 2-channel modulator uses universal 4 channel firmware in ATSC mode with two out of 4 channels disabled manually otherwise it doesn't work at all.

I use my modulator in ATSC mode and it works very well even with linear or multi-channel audio which I tested to work fat from HDMI toslink or inputs.
Although modulator accepts up to 1080p resolution on input, the output is up to 1080i [REMOVED: "which comes as no surprise considering J.83b standard"/REEMOVED]. Oh, and 24p input is not accepted just in case you hook up a Blu-ray with that mode enabled you have to switch to 60p or 60i to get a picture through modulator.

https://r.tapatalk.com/shareLink?url...e_type=t<br />

Sent from my SM-N910T3 using Tapatalk

Last edited by esdwa; 06-15-2017 at 07:20 AM.
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post #51 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 06:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esdwa View Post
Although modulator accepts up to 1080p resolution on input, the output is up to 1080i which comes as no surprise considering J.83b standard.
Just a minor correction. ITU-T J.83B is a transmission standard for cable 64QAM and 256QAM. It has no concept of the resolution being sent in the Transport Stream. In fact, it's the same standard for the downlink in DOCSIS cable modems (where IP packets are encapsulated in Transport Streams).

The 1080p@60 limitation is part of the MPEG-2 video standard. 1080p@60 was added in 2009, but AFAIK, it's never been implemented in any product. Mostly because H.264 had come into the limelight by then.

https://www.itu.int/rec/T-REC-H.262-200903-S!Amd3/en

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post #52 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 07:18 AM
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Indeed, so I remove the
"...as no surprise considering J.83b standard."

What remains reflects what this modulator does and don't. Hope some find it helpful. Thanks.

Sent from my SM-N910T3 using Tapatalk

Last edited by esdwa; 06-15-2017 at 07:53 AM.
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post #53 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 11:38 AM
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Confirmed. The VeCoax Micromod 2 has hardcoded video bitrate limitation set to 19.5Mbps. There is no way to set higher bitrate (pic.1) even for QAM which supports up to 38Mbps - see pic.2 and Bitrate Act/Max status. Such attempt using web interface the modulator uses results in bitrate parameter returning to its previous value (always <= 19500 kbps). I suppose the limitation might be related to encoding platform hardware capacity (most likely FPGA based) but since I see the modulator also supports much more demanding H.264 encoding algorithm, I am thinking it might be limitation due to licensing restriction or just a choice between product functionality and its reliability. Because when it works, it gets hot, really hot

Anyone has another idea about the possible cause of such limit? Are there encoders supporting QAM modulation with higher bitrates available?
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post #54 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 01:02 PM
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The 19.5 Mbps limit seems arbitrary. Encoding at high bitrates doesn't take any more horsepower (at least not on the encoders I used to work on). I've got a 70 Mbps MPEG-2 clip of Big Buck Bunny on my website.

Can you have sub-channels on one RF channel with this modulator?

Ron

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post #55 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by dr1394 View Post
Can you have sub-channels on one RF channel with this modulator?

Ron
Yes, it does support VCT, so I have for example assigned ch.100-1 to input #1 and ch.100-2 to input #2. Works well.



Sent from my SM-N910T3 using Tapatalk
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post #56 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by esdwa View Post
Yes, it does support VCT, so I have for example assigned ch.100-1 to input #1 and ch.100-2 to input #2. Works well.
Cool. I'd say that they're expecting users to use QAM with multiple sub-channels. Unless it's not a very good MPEG-2 encoder, it's going to be difficult to tell the difference between 19.5 Mbps and any higher bitrate.

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post #57 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 02:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dr1394 View Post
Cool. I'd say that they're expecting users to use QAM with multiple sub-channels. Unless it's not a very good MPEG-2 encoder, it's going to be difficult to tell the difference between 19.5 Mbps and any higher bitrate.

Ron
Good point. I have tested the modulator sending some high bitrate HD material in 1080 (source varying between 20-28Mbps) and it was hard to tell the difference when switching between RF and HDMI input of my TV sets including large 60" LED. However, there was maybe few seconds with high moving scenes with lots of details from entire several hours of materials I watched where 19.5Mbps was not enough and I could see the encoder choking (no skipping just RF image went below HDMI quality).

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post #58 of 170 Old 06-15-2017, 04:13 PM
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Originally Posted by esdwa View Post
Good point. I have tested the modulator sending some high bitrate HD material in 1080 (source varying between 20-28Mbps) and it was hard to tell the difference when switching between RF and HDMI input of my TV sets including large 60" LED. However, there was maybe few seconds with high moving scenes with lots of details from entire several hours of materials I watched where 19.5Mbps was not enough and I could see the encoder choking (no skipping just RF image went below HDMI quality).

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You might want to play with the delay on the modulator a bit. I know on the single channel version I tested that was a big issue. But, if you put the delay higher the modulator allowed itself more time to adjust and encode the material. This resulted in a smoother picture, even if the delay was longer vs the original source.
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post #59 of 170 Old 06-19-2017, 04:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpalmer2k View Post
You might want to play with the delay on the modulator a bit. I know on the single channel version I tested that was a big issue. But, if you put the delay higher the modulator allowed itself more time to adjust and encode the material. This resulted in a smoother picture, even if the delay was longer vs the original source.
Thanks for the pointer, will definitively try doing that.
One thing I tried recently with 2-CH Vecoax was recording to my d-vhs atsc tuner equipped deck mixed content using one of video inputs and sound using optical input in the modulator where I fed multi-channel recording. The modulator properly passed through and mixed sound along with the re-encoded video which resulted in excellent quality output of mixed old material I recorded one before with crystal clear soundtrack. I know, I could do that all on the PC without modulator and vcr but I just wanted to do another experiment and... have some more fun.
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post #60 of 170 Old 06-22-2017, 07:20 AM
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Encoder Out & RF output setup for European DVB-T RF mode

Hi,

I wanted to test DVB-T compliant tuner built in my Panasonic DMR-EZ49V using subject PVI VeCoar Micromod 2 RF modulator which support DVB-T. Although default setting for RF output under DVB-T modulation results in tuner tuning the modulator (two for 2 channels generated by modulator) properly with max. signal strength shown on the signal bar, there is no picture on that channel, I am getting message "No service" instead.

I suppose the issue may be in the TS packet configuration which can be defined in separate encoder output parameters list menu of my modulator, like :

* for 1st input/ch output
Service Provider = PVI
Program Name = HD1
Service ID =0x1
PMT PID =0x100
Video PID =0x101
Audio PID =0x102
PCR PID =0x103
Major Channel Number =0x1
Minor Channel Number =0x1
Source ID =0x1
Short Name =HD1

and 2nd intput/ch output
Service Provider =PVI
Program Name =HD2
Service ID =0x2
PMT PID =0x200
Video PID =0x201
Audio PID =0x202
PCR PID =0x203
Major Channel Number =0x2
Minor Channel Number =0x1
Source ID =0x1
Short Name = HD2

Can anyone help, please.
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