Use My Own DVR vs. Cox's? - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 21 Old 05-09-2006, 04:38 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
If someone has asked this before, I apologize. We have Cox digital cable, HD, with their set top HD receiver with DVR. Would I be able to just get their HD box and use my own DVR, like the new one Polaroid has that has not only an 80 gig hard drive but can play, read and write DV-RW and DVRs? Could I still time record programs and then transfer what I want to keep from the hard drive to a DVR? Or is Cox's digital box and DVR so exclusive that it wouldn't allow me to do that?

Thanks,
CAL
caltroon is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 21 Old 05-09-2006, 05:01 PM
AVS Special Member
 
TerryB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Houston, Tx.,USA
Posts: 1,009
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Generally speaking the problem is you can't get access to the encrypted channels on the cable with the off the shelf DVR/HDD/DVD. They aren't built to use the two way communications to the cable company headend which gives service permissions.

TerryB
TerryB is offline  
post #3 of 21 Old 05-09-2006, 05:30 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
What I should have said is I still want to use a Cox HD box, just not the one with the DVR with it, which isn't a big savings, only like $10-15 a month, but I'd be able to do much more, like burn from the hard drive to DVDs. The Cox digital receiver with HD with a DVR is like $20 a month and just getting the digital HD receiver is $10 a month. Again, not a big deal, but more useful. Would your answer still be the same under these circumstances?
Thanks,
CAL
caltroon is offline  
post #4 of 21 Old 05-09-2006, 07:44 PM
AVS Special Member
 
TerryB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Houston, Tx.,USA
Posts: 1,009
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
The advantage to the HD DVR is the ability to play back the full blown HD. If that is not a concern, go with what you care about the most.

TerryB
TerryB is offline  
post #5 of 21 Old 05-09-2006, 08:08 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Ken H's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: Metro Detroit
Posts: 45,876
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 12
The only non-cableco HD DVR's are the two discontinued Sony models. All other DVR's will only work in SD mode.

'Better Living Through Modern, Expensive, Electronic Devices'

Ken H is offline  
post #6 of 21 Old 05-09-2006, 11:35 PM
AVS Special Member
 
WestCoastD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: California
Posts: 7,393
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked: 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
I still want to use a Cox HD box, just not the one with the DVR with it
Yes, you can do exactly what you're trying to explain.

I have my systems set-up to do this, and it works just fine. Only thing, like Ken H mentioned, you can only record to Standard Definition (SD) resolution (ie. 480i), which is fine with me, although you should be able to record any channel that you can view (whether it's a Standard-Def or Hi-Def channel).

Most of the popular Digital Video Recorder (DVR)/Hard Drive (HD) machines work just fine- ie. Toshiba's, Sony's, Pioneer's, Panasonic's, etc.,...(you notice I'm not using acronym's everywhere, isn't that nice :) ). I'm using a Sony RDR-HX715 in one set-up (living-room Home Theater) and a Philips HDRW720/17 in another set-up (in my bedroom). They both work fine.

I have Time Warner Cable, which provides Scientific Atlanta (SA) cable boxes. I'm using their popular SA Explorer 8300HD DVR model, the only cable boxes they're supplying in my jurisdiction. My local cable operator just disables the recording mode (from his computer) preventing me from using the cable box record function. Consequently, I'm not charged any additional cost's either, just the normal cost for a Hi-Def cable box.

Therefore I set-up my cable box/DVR with s-video OUT-> to DVR-HD s-video INP; DVR-HD s-video OUT -> to TV s-video INP. Then connect cable box/DVR component video OUT (or HDMI OUT) -> to TV component video INP (or HDMI INP). Hopefully your TV is new enough to provide capability to switch from one input (component video for example) to another (s-video for example) using the remote. This way you can record to your DVR-HD (in Standard Def), while, at the same time, watch TV in Hi-Def., and switch back-and-forth to view recorded play-back.

If you're using an (up-converting) AV receiver in your configuration then you would connect cable box/DVR s-video OUT-> to DVR-HD s-video INP; DVR-HD s-video OUT -> to AV Receiver s-video INP; connect AV Receiver component video OUT (or HDMI OUT) -> to TV component video INP (or HDMI INP); connect cable box/DVR component video OUT -> to AV Receiver component video INP. The connecton types can vary depending on your device(s) inputs. I also connect any additional (left-over) DVR-HD output(s) directly to any extra TV input(s)- for example, connect DVR-HD composite video OUT-> to TV composite video INP to provide monitoring capability, especially if your TV has Picture-In-Picture (PIP) function. This configuration will allow you to switch from cable TV (Hi-Def.), to DVR-HD (Stand Def), using your receiver remote. With PIP function you can view DVR-HD playback in small screen while main screen is "live" cable TV broadcast, kind of neat.

You'll have to read the manual for your DVR-HD to properly configure the IR-Blaster and all related system set-up, it can be messy trying to understand but it works.

Good Luck!

PS: what specific DVR-HD, TV and Receiver models are you using, just curious?
WestCoastD is offline  
post #7 of 21 Old 05-10-2006, 12:00 AM
 
HDTVFanAtic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: 3rd Rock from the Sun
Posts: 8,143
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by WestCoastD
Yes, you can do exactly what you're trying to explain.

I have my systems set-up to do this, and it works just fine. Only thing. like Ken H mentioned, you can only record to Standard Definition (SD) resolution (ie. 480i), which is fine with me, although you should be able to record any channel that you can view.

As DVDs won't record HD either, that should not be a problem for him.
HDTVFanAtic is offline  
post #8 of 21 Old 05-10-2006, 05:45 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Nmlobo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Yorktown, VA
Posts: 2,475
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Maybe Cox will present you with a solution. They are investigating (through a survey) using TIVOs " . . . If Cox were to offer digital cable service with a TiVo branded DVR for about the same price as you are currently paying for satellite service each month, how likely would you be to switch from satellite TV to Cox cable that featured this TiVo branded DVR service?"
.
Nmlobo is offline  
post #9 of 21 Old 05-10-2006, 09:07 AM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Wow, what thorough replies. Thanks so much. I'm a "she," by the way, but the TV/Computer person in the family.
Obviously I can do what I want to do, but I should have said what equipment we have just in case that makes any difference. But it looks like it should work. Here's what we have: A Mitsubishi HD rear projection TV WS 55517 (which has something called Net Control), a Yamaha surround sound receiver, which I think actually controls the attached devices, a VCR (not digital, we only use it to play old videos) a Pioneer DVD (not HD, not DVR, just plays regular DVDs), and a Scientific Atlanta Explorer HD 8300 Digital cable box with DVR. We don't get the movie channels (we have Netflix) so the HD we get is all the local channels and the few others that are at present HD. I don't care about recording in HD.

I wouldn't even unhook the DVD we have, I'd still use it and really what I want to do is substitute a stand-alone DVR for Cox's receiver and DVR in one - the DVR part of it, that is. We don't even use the PIP capabilities of our TV, it's a new one, got it last September, and we never used PIP on our old one.

The only thing I didn't quite understand was the upconverting AV receiver. Are you talking about our Yamaha receiver? It's an RX-V457. It seems to me by what you say that I'd have to add one more hookup - from the cable box to the new DVR and from the DVR to the Yamaha receiver. All the TV has hooked up to it is a cable line (I think that's for PIP) and a big fat triple cable (two audios and a video of some kind?) and a single RCA type line going somewhere. All the major connections are in back of the Yamaha receiver.

I saw a Polaroid DVR at Wal-Mart for $219, 80 gig hard drive, writes DV-R and DR-RW. I thought that would do what we needed at a pretty good price.
You are being so helpful, all of you, thank you so much,
CAL
caltroon is offline  
post #10 of 21 Old 05-11-2006, 02:52 AM
AVS Special Member
 
WestCoastD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: California
Posts: 7,393
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked: 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
Wow, what thorough replies. Thanks so much. I'm a "she,"
by the way

Here's what we have: A Mitsubishi HD rear projection TV WS 55517 (which
has something called Net Control), a Yamaha surround sound receiver, which
I think actually controls the attached devices, a VCR (not digital, we only
use it to play old videos) a Pioneer DVD (not HD, not DVR, just plays
regular DVDs), and a Scientific Atlanta Explorer HD 8300 Digital cable box
with DVR.I don't care about recording in HD.

We don't even use the PIP capabilities of our TV, it's a new one, got it
last September, and we never used PIP on our old one.

Hi:

I'm a "He", by the way.

You have quite a TV (52"), it's very nice! IT has built-in up-conversion- which means it converts Standard Definition (SDTV) video to Enhanced Definition
(EDTV) video quality. Looks like it has (02) s-video inputs, (02) component
video inputs, and (01) HDMI input. Also has PIP/POP capability, good.

Essentially up-conversion can "magically" upgrade the picture quality of
cable television channels and/or video output from a DVD, DVR or VCR player
(without going into a long elaborate explanation).

You have the ever popular SA 8300HD cable box as well, no problem.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
The only thing I didn't quite understand was the upconverting AV receiver.
Are you talking about our Yamaha receiver? It's an RX-V457. It seems to
me by what you say that I'd have to add one more hookup - from the cable
box to the new DVR and from the DVR to the Yamaha receiver. All the TV has
hooked up to it is a cable line (I think that's for PIP) and a big fat
triple cable (two audios and a video of some kind?) and a single RCA type
line going somewhere. All the major connections are in back of the Yamaha
receiver.

I saw a Polaroid DVR at Wal-Mart for $219, 80 gig hard drive, writes DV-R
and DR-RW.
The Yamaha 457 is a decent AV Receiver, although it does not have built-in
up-conversion capability, not a problem. Only dictates how the connections
need to be routed, moreso.

I'm not hands-on experienced with Polaroid DVD or DVR players, anyway looks
like the one your referring to is model No. DRM-2001G . Should work okay.
Alhough I can't seem to locate a manual or user guide at Polaroid's
web-site, preventing me from knowing all connectivity specifications.
However, I'm sure it at least has an s-video input and a component video
output. You'll have to go through the manual/instructions after you
purchase it to better understand set-up details. I believe it has an "IR
Blaster" of some kind to automatically switch channels on your cable-box
for programming recordings.

You'll definitely need to learn more about the popular cable/connection
formats- ie. composite, s-video, component video, and HDMI. You can either
go on-line and do a search on these terms, or look around this forum. The
device manuals also have diagrams on cable types as well- ie. for example, look on page 14 of your Yamaha 457 manual, it has pretty good diagrams and explanations of the various cable types.

Anyway, I'm not going to attempt to guess what the ("big fat" triple) cable's you're describing on your TV set-up are. Instead, I suggest you start from "scratch" and remove all your cable connections and re-install a new configuration.

There are probably 5 different configurations you could go with, I'll describe a few-

[1] Use your Yamaha receiver as your central point of control (or switching) along with separate speakers for Home Theater (HT) "Surround Sound", and 2-channel stereo for music. With this set-up you can use your Yamaha remote to switch from CableTV, to DVR-HD, to VCR- to watch TV and movies (in Stan-Def & Hi-Def in full "theater surround"), listen to music, record CableTV programs to your DVR, etc.,...You would need a complete 5.1 speaker set (ie. 2 fronts, 2 rear-surrounds, 1 center, and a sub-woofer). Also, this configuration does not include your Pioneer DVD player, you would [not] necessarily need to use it.

[2] Use your Yamaha receiver as your central point of control (or switching) along with the two "built-in" surround speakers on your Mitsubishi TV. With this set-up you can use your Yamaha remote to switch from CableTV, to DVR-HD, to VCR- to watch TV and movies (in Stan-Def & Hi-Def), listen to music, record CableTV programs to your DVR, etc.,...However, the the major difference here is your audio capability would be limited to a less powerful 2-channel stereo surround format. You could play music as well. Also, this configuration does not include your Pioneer DVD player, you would [not] necessarily need to use it.

I would go with configuration #[1] as much as possible to provide the most enjoyment. Here's a quick & dirty detailed set-up description:

(a) Connect SA8300HD s-video OUT-> to Polaroid DVR-HD s-video INP; connect Polaroid DVR-HD component video OUT -> to Yamaha component video INP ("DVD A" connection). Also connect one analog audio RCA pair (1 red & 1 white) from SA8300HD audio OUT 2 (Left & Right) -> to Polaroid DVR-HD analog audio INP; connect one digital optical audio cable from Polaroid DVR-HD digital optical audio OUT -> to Yamaha Digital (optical) Input 1, or connect one analog audio RCA pair (1 red & 1 white) from Polaroid DVR-HD analog audio OUT-> to Yamaha analog AUDIO inp "DVD" (Left & Right).

(b) Connect SA8300HD cable box component video OUT -> to Yamaha component video INP ("DTV/CBL B" connection). Connect one analog audio RCA pair (1 red & 1 white) from SA8300HD audio OUT 1 (Left & Right)-> to Yamaha AUDIO inp "DTV/CBL" (Left & Right).

(c) Connect your Pioneer DVD s-video OUT -> to Yamaha s-video "VCR IN". Connect one analog audio RCA pair (1 red & 1 white) from the Pioneer DVD audio OUT (Left & Right)-> to Yamaha AUDIO "VCR IN" (Left & Right).

(d) Connect Yamaha component video "MONITOR OUT"-> to Mitsubishi component video INP 1. Connect Yamaha composite video (or s-video) "MONITOR OUT"-> to Mitsubishi composite video (or s-video) INP 2.

(e) Connect one Polaroid DVR-HD s-video (or composite video) OUT-> to Mitsubishi s-video (or composite video) INP. This connection can be used to monitor DVR-HD playback using TV PIP/POP (split-screen) function.

(f) You would probably have to connect one video coax cable (F-pin) from your SA8300HD CABLE OUT-> to Polaroid DVR-HD cable IN. This is to provide a cable connection to your Polaroid DVR-HD for recording set-up purposes. An IR Blaster (LED-like component) will also connect to the back of your Polaroid DVR-HD an be positioned in front of your SA8300HD cable box.

(g) Follow speaker connection diagram from your Yamaha V-457 manual (pg. 13) to configure 6-speaker configuration (for 5.1 surround-sound). You would'nt need the one surround-back speaker (unless you desire to).

Anyway.......you will have to study the connection diagrams (from the manuals) for all the devices you plan to use. Try to identify the specific connections I'm describing, then figure out what, and how many, cables you will need to get first. Then re-connect your complete system.

If you want specifics for configuration #[2] let me know.

Good Luck, and have fun! (I know all this may seem intimidating, but it's not)................
WestCoastD is offline  
post #11 of 21 Old 05-11-2006, 09:22 AM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Thank you so much. The number one hookup through the Yamaha is what we have now, as described. We do have the 5 surround sound speakers as well as a subwoofer. That stuff is easy to hook up.

The big fat triple cable is composite. I had forgotten what it was. It's the monster cable compositie video audio.

When the guys from Ultimate Electronics installed all the stuff they said they weren't totally going by the hookup instructions in the manual as they had to do a few things differently. Actually, it's the 55 inch Mitsubishi. I think they hooked up the VCR wrong as even though it's not a digital one, the new $500-$1,000 rare ones that are compatible with this Net Command, I think we still should be able to switch to it and record incoming tv. We can't - we can only watch prerecorded tapes. However since I know now I can hook up this new DVR and record what I want to keep on DVDs that doesn't matter anyway.

I think I'll make a photocopy of the back of our receiver and play around with the wires on paper first . I found the features list on the Polaroid web site and since it says real time recording and live video time shifting, I'm sure the Yamaha will be able to handle switching to it as it does the TV and DVD. I think I have all the cables I need if I decide to just replace the DVD I now have with the new one that does it all. If all this may require is a small amount of switching, I may just leave the layout as it is and just add the new DVR into the scheme of things.

I appreciate the clarity of your explanations and instructions. Makes me crazy when someone who has a lot more technical knowledge than I do talks only in techno terms because they think it sounds impressive.

I'm going to label and mark all the connections I have now so I can go back to things if I have to. This may turn out to be fun. It sure will be learning.

Thanks,
CAL
caltroon is offline  
post #12 of 21 Old 05-11-2006, 01:09 PM
AVS Special Member
 
WestCoastD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: California
Posts: 7,393
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked: 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
We do have the 5 surround sound speakers as well as a subwoofer. That stuff is easy to hook up.
Great!..........well that takes care of the major 5.1 HT surround piece.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
The big fat triple cable is composite. I had forgotten what it was. It's the monster cable compositie video audio.
You sure this is a composite video cable? Make sure, it sounds like it may be a component video cable (ie. 3 RCA cables bundled together into one 3-ended video cable?). I did'nt want to guess. Component Video is the only analog method of passing a Hi-Def signal, very important.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
However since I know now I can hook up this new DVR and record what I want to keep on DVDs that (VCR recording) doesn't matter anyway.
Yeah.......my connection configuration is designed to [only] allow for viewing VCR tapes, and not recording to VCR. I figured you would only care about recording to your new DVR. I have my system set-up this way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
I think I'll make a photocopy of the back of our receiver and play around with the wires on paper first
There you go! You're on the right track! This is the way to do it! Photo-copy all your device rear layout diagrams (or even images). Sometimes you can find rear-view images on-line by doing a search of the product model number.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
I found the features list on the Polaroid web site and since it says real time recording and live video time shifting, I'm sure the Yamaha will be able to handle switching to it as it does the TV and DVD.
Yeah........the Yamaha is configured to be able to switch from one device to another, or from TV to DVR to VCR. Only now your new Polaroid (DVR) will be connected to the Yamaha "DVD" selection (or input) on your remote.

Only thing, your VCR will be connected to your TV via-different input (s-video or composite video) than your other devices (which are component video). So you will have to learn how to use your TV remote to switch from one input to the other. This is due to the limited quantity of (component video) inputs on the Yamaha, understand what I mean here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
I think I have all the cables I need if I decide to just replace the DVD I now have with the new one that does it all. If all this may require is a small amount of switching, I may just leave the layout as it is and just add the new DVR into the scheme of things.
Fine, just make sure your current connection set-up matches my configuration #[1].

Have fun!...........


PS: here's some quick & dirty info on cable connection/types-

Video cables:
1. component video- essentially 3 RCA cables joined together (green "Y", blue "Pb", red "Pr" designations). Will pass up to Hi-Def (HDTV) quality video.
Also, need to provide one analog audio pair (or one digital audio cable) along with a component video cable to pass audio from one device to another.

2. s-video - single cable, with special round connector (with micro-connections inside). Will pass up to Enhanced-Def (EDTV) quality video. Also, need to provide one analog audio pair along with an s-video cable to pass audio from one device to another.

3. composite video- essentially 1 RCA cable (usually yellow designation). Will pass only Standard Def (SDTV) quality. Also, need to provide one analog audio pair along with a composite video cable to pass audio from one device to another.

Audio cables:
1. analog audio- refers to 2 RCA cables, or "pair" (usually designated by red & white, right & left respectively).

2. digital optical audio- refers to a single special optical cable, also referred to as a "TosLink". Highest quality digital audio sound.

3. digital coax audio- refers to a single audio cable with "coax" type connections on both ends. Provides high-quality digital audio.
WestCoastD is offline  
post #13 of 21 Old 05-12-2006, 08:51 AM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Yes, you're right, they are component cables. When we want to use the VCR we have to go into the Mitsubishi's Net Command screen and switch from Yamaha to VCR. Then we have to change the input on the TV/VCR switch to VCR. It's all because of this Net Command thing. Fortunately we don't watch videos very much anymore, except for the ones we haven't been able yet to get on DVD. We've slowly been replacing all our VCR tapes with DVDs. So sounds like yours is hooked up exactly like mine is.

If we keep using our other DVD player we can also use one of the other Yamaha inputs for the new DVR - there are lots of them unused - CD, MD/CR-R, V-Aux plus two buttons up there, one with one star above it, one with two. That's probably if you have more equipment. Looks like the Yamaha can control 9 devices. I don't even use that remote - I have a One For All 8910 that controls everything. So we have lots of places to plug things in. Since the new DVR would be compatible with Net Command and the Yamaha (unlike the VCR) the Yamaha should be able to automatically control it just like the other one. I've printed out everything you've written, so I'll soon take the plunge!
Thanks,
CAL
caltroon is offline  
post #14 of 21 Old 05-12-2006, 09:57 PM
AVS Special Member
 
WestCoastD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: California
Posts: 7,393
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked: 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
If we keep using our other DVD player we can also use one of the other Yamaha inputs for the new DVR - there are lots of them unused - CD, MD/CR-R, V-Aux plus two buttons up there, one with one star above it, one with two. That's probably if you have more equipment. Looks like the Yamaha can control 9 devices. I don't even use that remote - I have a One For All 8910 that controls everything. So we have lots of places to plug things in. Since the new DVR would be compatible with Net Command and the Yamaha (unlike the VCR) the Yamaha should be able to automatically control it just like the other one. I've printed out everything you've written, so I'll soon take the plunge!
Thanks,
CAL
Hi:

yeah........you want to be careful which inputs you use. "CD", "MD/CR-R" are both audio inputs [not video]. Look at pg. 10 and try to understand.

"V-AUX" is your only extra [video] input available, it's located on the Yamaha front panel (bottom of pg. 17, top of pg.18 in manual).

The statement on pg. 63 can be somewhat mis-leading (ie. "You can control up to 9 different components" etc.,...). What they're referring to here is the Yamaha remote control's ability to be custom programmed to control other devices (like your "One For All 8910" remote does).

Since you don't watch many VHS tapes these days (like most of us) then your VCR should be "low-priority" in the system configuration. I would give priority to your (new) Polaroid DVR-HD, the SA8300HD cable box, and your other Pioneer DVD. You can just use your Yamaha front-panel ("AUX") composite inputs to connect your VCR whenever you want to watch a VHS tape.

Therefore, I updated the configuration #[1] to reflect this change (in step c). You may want to print it out again.

Now all your devices will correspond to the following inputs on your Yamaha receiver:

Polaroid DVR-Hard Drive = "DVD"
SA 3800HD cable box = "DTV/CBL"
Pioneer DVD = "VCR"
your old VCR = "AUX"

This should make everything clean and nice now.


Good Luck!

PS: it would be a big help to know what Yamaha video inputs your devices are connected to right now. That way I could tell you exactly what to do if you just want to add your new Polaroid DVR-HD, and keep everything else as is.
WestCoastD is offline  
post #15 of 21 Old 05-13-2006, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
That's exactly what I'd like to do - just add the new DVR to all the rest and not have to change out everything else. I just want to be sure that it's in the proper sequence so that it will record from cable like Cox's DVR does now. In the next couple of days, I'll put out the TV and get behind it and write everything down. I like your ideas. I'll be back in a couple of days (after this whole graduation weekend is over) with what I have where, especially how Cox's stuff is hooked up now.

I don't think the VCR is cabled in to interfere with all this anyway, since it's separately controlled and not one of the high end digital ones. I'll look and see.

Thanks much, have a good weekend!

CAL
caltroon is offline  
post #16 of 21 Old 05-16-2006, 04:33 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Okay, I spent some time behind the entertainment center and made a drawing of everything. I hope this is clear, if not let me know:

On the back of the Yamaha sound receiver:
left to right
Digital Optical Input - Goes to Pioneer DVD's Optical port
Underneath that is DVD Optical Output which goes to cable box's optical audio out

next to the right is Multi Channel Input - there are eight of them

O O
O O
x x
O O
The two x'd ones go to the VCR L and R Audio

Next are nine "holes" that say Sound Component Video

Pr Pb Y
DVD 1 1 1 1 go from Sound to DVD Sound & Video
DTV\\Cable 2 2 2 2 go from Sound to Cable Box
Tuner 3 3 3 go to the TV Tuner

The last section is all the speakers, and they're all easily hooked up - the
center, the two front, the two surround and the subwoofer

I hope this makes sense.

CAL
caltroon is offline  
post #17 of 21 Old 05-17-2006, 09:31 AM
Member
 
thebigbezona's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Windsor, CT
Posts: 18
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I am not sure why you would want to give up the HD-DVR? Unless you plan on burning a LOT of DVD's, I would expect you would spend way more time watching shows you have recorded on the DVR, and losing the ability to record HD.

For me, since I watch virtually nothing in real time, not having the HD-DVR would be the same as not having HD at all.

You CAN have both. I do this now with a TiVo with DVD recorder, and my HD-DVR box from Comcast. I have a second, standard cable box for the TiVo.

I would also be a little wary of a product like this from a company with no history of making a DVR. You might be better off looking at one of the HUMAX TiVo DVD recorders - yes, it's more money, but it's a mature product, and TiVo definitely has the best DVR functionality around.

It also has capability that the Poloaroid simply doesn't - like TiVo to Go, which allows you to save your recodrings from the TiVo to a computer over a wired or wireless network, which you can then burn to DVD, transfer to a portable video player, etc. This is actually way more useful in reality than a DVD recorder for me.

It's also the only TiVo still available where you can still buy the lifetime service, thanks to their agreement with Humax.

Not trying to "bash" your decision - you have your own criteria, just want to give an alternative point of view to consider.
thebigbezona is offline  
post #18 of 21 Old 05-18-2006, 09:32 AM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Thanks for your input. I don't watch much TV, period, but when I do it's 90% movies - either from Biography Channel, Netflix, Hallmark, etc. I tend to like to watch the same movies over and over again if I like them. I'm not one to watch a movie once and then never see it again. So most of what I watch on BBC America, Biography (Poirot, Midsomer Murderes, Sherlock Holmes) I want on DVD. We don't have an HD DVD and I couldn't care less about burning a DVD in HD. I never even watch HD as we only have the local stations plus a couple more in HD. So it's a priority for me to be able to have what I want to watch on permanent DVDs. All a DVR with just a hard drive gives you is the ability to watch what's on the hard drive. I want to be able to keep these things on DVD.

I notice there are lots more DVRs with both a burning drive and a hard drive around now and the Polaroid was a possibility but everyone else has them out, also. I really don't have any interest in having the greatest sound or picture or whatever. I still listen to audiotapes and even have some 8-tracks. So the DVR with +/-R, RW really is the best thing. I just need the help in the sequence from the cable box to the DVR input.

Hope that explains things!
Thanks,
CAL
caltroon is offline  
post #19 of 21 Old 05-19-2006, 02:05 AM
AVS Special Member
 
WestCoastD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: California
Posts: 7,393
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked: 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
Okay, I spent some time behind the entertainment center and made a drawing of everything. I hope this is clear, if not let me know:
CAL

Hi:

Just noticed your post here..................guess I was "out-to-lunch".

yeah, a different, more established DVR brand [would] be a wiser choice- ie. a Sony RDRHX715; Toshiba RDXS-35, RDXS34, RDXS54; Pioneer DVR-633H-S, DVR-533H-S; etc.,...

However, we can make your Polaroid work for you as well, I'm not too concerned about that.

Using your SA8300HD cable box for [only] cable televsion access is just fine. You can always choose to use the built-in DVR-HD if you wish. Although your cable company will charge you a service fee for recording, I'd rather not pay them any more than they're already getting. Also, the SA8300HD can [not] burn archived recordings onto a DVD for you to keep.

I'd rather have my own DVR-HD anyway (even though it can't record in HD resolution). They are wonderful machines.


Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
On the back of the Yamaha sound receiver:
left to right
Digital Optical Input - Goes to Pioneer DVD's Optical port
Underneath that is DVD Optical Output which goes to cable box's optical audio out

next to the right is Multi Channel Input - there are eight of them

O O
O O
x x
O O
The two x'd ones go to the VCR L and R Audio

Next are nine "holes" that say Sound Component Video

Pr Pb Y
DVD 1 1 1 1 go from Sound to DVD Sound & Video
DTV\\Cable 2 2 2 2 go from Sound to Cable Box
Tuner 3 3 3 go to the TV Tuner

The last section is all the speakers, and they're all easily hooked up - the
center, the two front, the two surround and the subwoofer

I hope this makes sense.

Most of this I can make sense of. Too bad, if you were like 30 or 45 min away I'd just drive over and configure everything for you in an hour.

Anyway, we'll figure it out. You'll have to learn to understand the rear panel layout (I think you can, no problem).

If you notice each input and output section has a square (or rectangular) border around it. If you read from the left (sometimes underneath) of each section you'll notice the input name (ie. FRONT, SURROUND, SUB WOOFER, CD, IN, OUT, etc.,...).

The first (small-narrow) section on the left are the DIGITAL INPUT. This is fairly straight forward (I think you understand this section). The first two are optical (or square)- #1 has "DVD" designation (going to your Pioneer optical OUT), #2 has DTV/CBL designation (going to your SA8300HD optical OUT). The bottom one is a digital coax input #3 (which I guess you're not using?).

Next (to the right) is the MULTI-CH INPUT section. This section is "shaded" around the inputs themselves. There should only be a total of 6 multi-channel inputs. You should'nt have anything connected in this area. These are used for a specific type of multi-channel audio configuration.

Below the multi-channel input section are the analog AUDIO inputs for CD and MD/CD-R designations. There should only be 6 inputs in this section. If you notice below the bottom inputs it reads "AUDIO" and "R" and "L". This means audio inputs, right & left, respectively. The bottom pair of inputs are MD/CD-R "OUT (REC), right & left; The next (or middle) pair are MD/CD-R "IN (PLAY)", right & left. The top pair are CD, right & left. You should'nt have anything connected in this area.

Next (to the right) are the analog AUDIO and VIDEO inputs for DVD, DTV/CBL and VCR designations. There are two pairs of columns of inputs, or a total of 18 inputs in this area (one column for AUDIO the other for VIDEO). Looks like you have your VCR audio connected to VCR "IN", right & left, respectively. But where is the VCR video input connected?

Below these inputs are a small section with 1 input with SUB WOOFER OUTPUT designation. You should have your sub-woofer connected here, correct?

Next (across to the right, and up top) are the COMPONENT VIDEO inputs (Pr Pb Y) with DVD A, DTV/CBL B and MONITOR OUT designations. Looks like you have your Pioneer DVD connected to "DVD A"; SA8300HD cable box connected to "DTV/CBL B"; TV connected to "MONITOR OUT". This is fine!

Below the component video inputs is the "TUNER" section. It has AM/ANT, GND and FM/ANT designations. Only thing connected here is your antenna [if you're using one], otherwise no worry.

And the rest are all the speaker inputs, you seem to have these under control.

Anyway, to configure your new Polaroid DVR-HD device you will have to remove the VCR AUDIO (left & right) connections (you mentioned above).

Then follow these steps (from previous instructions):
(a) Connect SA8300HD cable box s-video OUT-> to Polaroid DVR-HD s-video INP; connect Polaroid DVR-HD s-video OUT -> to Yamaha s-video VCR IN.
Also connect one analog audio RCA pair (1 red & 1 white) from SA8300HD cable box audio OUT 2 (Left & Right) -> to Polaroid DVR-HD analog audio INP;
Connect one analog audio RCA pair (1 red & 1 white) from Polaroid DVR-HD analog audio OUT-> to Yamaha analog AUDIO VCR IN (right & left respectively).

If you study your Yamaha manual (pg. 10) you can figure all this out (I bet). Or by looking at the back. Also, need to look on back of cable box to get familiar with where all the inputs are I'm describing (or if you have an SA8300HD manual, look at rear panel connection diagram).

Let me know when you get your new DVR.

One more thing, to use your VCR- just connect VCR video OUT to Yamaha (front panel) "AUX" VIDEO IN. Connect VCR analog audio RCA pair to Yamaha (front panel) "AUX" AUDIO IN.


Good Luck!
WestCoastD is offline  
post #20 of 21 Old 05-31-2006, 01:57 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
caltroon's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 9
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Still working on getting the DVR. Now Wal-Mart has opened a new Audio Video section with at least a half dozen of these DVRs with the hard drive and ability to write to DV-R & RW so now I'm in the process of comparing and looking. I printed your instructions so as soon as we decide on what we're going to do, we attempt a hookup.

You have been so helpful, I really appreciate it. Obviously you know what you're talking about. Maybe soon in the future we'll have transporters like on Star Trek and instead of writing down advice we can just beam to each other's areas, take care of the problem, and beam right back out again!

Thanks,

CAL
caltroon is offline  
post #21 of 21 Old 06-02-2006, 02:59 PM
AVS Special Member
 
WestCoastD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: California
Posts: 7,393
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 28 Post(s)
Liked: 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by caltroon
Still working on getting the DVR.
No problem, I'll be here when you're ready.
WestCoastD is offline  
Closed Thread HDTV Technical



Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off