DVICO Fusion 5 HDTV tuner - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 11:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Now that this card is shipping, it's time to start a fresh thread with solid information rather than speculation. If you've installed this card, please let us know your impressions. Here's the basic info on the FusionHDTV5 cards:

What?
The DVICO Fusion 5 is a new ATSC tuner card with the latest 5th generation LG chipset. It includes BDA drivers compatible with Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005, and also comes with its own homegrown PVR software. There are two flavors - Gold and Lite. The Gold includes bundled DVD creation software and an MCE compatible remote control and a different, later generation analog tuner than the Lite.

The new cards ship with driver version 2.99.09, which as of this date are newer than the drivers at DVICO's website.

Where
Read about it here:
DVICO Product Page

Buy it here:
Digital Connection: FusionHDTV5 Gold
Digital Connection: FusionHDTV5 Lite
CopperBox: FusionHDTV5 Gold
CopperBox: FusionHDTV5 Lite

What software can I use with this card?
DVICO's PVR software is serviceable. It uses TitanTV for an Electronic Program Guide and scheduled recording, and supports pause, rewind, and fast forward of live tv.

GotAllMedia supports the Fusion card.

There's a 3rd party plugin for Sage that supports the Fusion cards.

Media Center Edition 2005 is supported, and the DVICO drivers allow multiple (two?) cards to be used in MCE.

The big question for me is how much better is the new LG tuner for multipath and weak signal problems? DVICO says
Quote:


Enhanced reception rate using the LG's 5th generation tuner
Improved reception performance for wider distances and better multi-path rejection

Is it true?
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post #2 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 12:24 PM
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I don't know if it has improved multipath rejection. This is the first HDTV card that I've ever owned.

I hopefully will have my antenna set up this weekend.

I live about 50 miles from the transmitter, so I hope it works well.

I'll report back once I'm done.
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post #3 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 12:59 PM
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Thank you Steve for starting this thread. I got tired of reading too much speculation from other thread. I look forward reading reports of how well Fusion 5 handles multi-path signals in this thread.

Peter
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post #4 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
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'welcome. I have 2 fears with this card.

1) I buy it now to replace my F3 and it doesn't help my reception issues. or
2) It turns out to be killer and then it's out of stock and I can't get it.

Help me Obi-wan.
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post #5 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Schauer View Post

'welcome. I have 2 fears with this card.

1) I buy it now to replace my F3 and it doesn't help my reception issues. or
2) It turns out to be killer and then it's out of stock and I can't get it.

Help me Obi-wan.

That's why I don't want to be a guienna pig.
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post #6 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:11 PM
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I've got a 3 and a 5 up and running AOK. But, i am using one for QAM and one for OTA.

I'm not an OTA HD Expert, nor did I stay at a Holiday Inn last night. But, I can easily hook them both up to OTA and run some tests. Luckily for me, I already get great reception of all my locals. So, other than reporting back signal strength meter differences, is there any else I can test, or use to test, that might help other potential/current users? Suggestions welcome:-)
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post #7 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:13 PM
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I'm not sure that this is the best time of the year to be testing for long distance reception anyway. Propagation is pretty good right now, and my F3 is getting excellent reception from over 70 miles. It's in the middle of winter when I can't get much, and would like to know if the new tuner will help. 'Course, multi-path issues are probably more common, and more consistent. Can't wait to hear some actual test results.
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post #8 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:16 PM - Thread Starter
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NeoSG, from what I understand, the signal strength is only a very crude indicator of what's going on. It doesn't tell you what the signal/noise is, or anything about the multipath.

That's really a shame you have good reception.
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post #9 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:20 PM
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My F5 is on the UPS truck and I'm setup and ready to start testing.

I can compare the F5 to a F3 and MyHD MDP-120/MDP-130 cards. I have a Silver Sensor setup (w/o amp) and can get a good lock on the MyHD MDP-120 at 21% off one of my low power channels (28% to 32% on MDP-130) and no signal on the other LP channel. This will be a good test of the F5 to see if it can tune the "no signal" channel.
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post #10 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:21 PM
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Thanks for your heartful concern Steve

Any suggestions on tools or other apps I could use to help is any kind of testing for the benefit of others. I have gotten so much out of the this site in the past. Nice to try and returnt he favor.

If you think of anything, just let me know.

hey wait, I know. I could rig up a power converter, and drive my computer and a monitor around town until I get a bad signal, lol
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post #11 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NEOSG View Post

I'm not an OTA HD Expert, nor did I stay at a Holiday Inn last night. But, I can easily hook them both up to OTA and run some tests. Luckily for me, I already get great reception of all my locals. So, other than reporting back signal strength meter differences, is there any else I can test, or use to test, that might help other potential/current users? Suggestions welcome:-)

Go to Radio Shack and buy about 10 4 to 1 splitters, and hook them all up in line, followed by an attenuator.
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post #12 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:31 PM
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Does the Qam support on it? I had one of the first 3 cards that the qam didnt work on, so on top of wanting better ota, i would like working qam.

MI
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post #13 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:32 PM
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I would love a comparison between the fusion 5 and the HDTV Wonder. As of right now the HDTV Wonder studders a bit even with a strong signal.
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post #14 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skiguy411 View Post

I would love a comparison between the fusion 5 and the HDTV Wonder. As of right now the HDTV Wonder studders a bit even with a strong signal.

Isn't the HDTV wonder only an OTA hd tuner?
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post #15 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 01:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmansg1 View Post

Isn't the HDTV wonder only an OTA hd tuner?


correct

It's the job of the salesman to give honest and accurate product info and let the customer decide if it fits their needs.
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post #16 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 02:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Incorrect. There's an analog tuner on the HDTV Wonder as well as a digital tuner. The analog tuner isn't recognized by MCE with the ATI drivers, but there's a hacked set of drivers that lets it somewhat work in MCE.

This is also off-topic. Cliff, where's that dang UPS guy? I need some anecdotal evidence.

There's a thread on the HDTV Hardware forum where someone reported that the 30" LG display with the built-in 5G tuner didn't do anything extra for him.
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post #17 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 02:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skiguy411 View Post

I would love a comparison between the fusion 5 and the HDTV Wonder. As of right now the HDTV Wonder studders a bit even with a strong signal.

Are you using ATI MMC or Windows MCE 2005? What graphics card are you using? I started with ATI MMC and I had nothing but problems. I now use Windows MCE 2005 with latest NVIDIA DVD decoder and it works great. No stuttering at 720p or 1080i. In order to have smooth playback at 1080i, I had to replace the cheaper FX5200 with higher-end GeForce 6600GT graphics card. Try set your video output to 720p and see if it still stutters.

Remember Fusion 5 will most likely not solve weak signal problem. It supposed to solve multi-paths problem. There's a difference.

Peter
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post #18 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 02:31 PM
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Steve, I don't know. Still waiting here at 5:30 PM.

I noticed something about a small UHF antenna. I moved the Silver Sensor 2 feet to the right on my patio railing and the signal level increased 30%. Still can't tune the LP Fox channel.

I also noticed that thread about the 30" LG TV.
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post #19 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 02:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NEOSG View Post

Thanks for your heartful concern Steve

Any suggestions on tools or other apps I could use to help is any kind of testing for the benefit of others. I have gotten so much out of the this site in the past. Nice to try and returnt he favor.

If you think of anything, just let me know.

hey wait, I know. I could rig up a power converter, and drive my computer and a monitor around town until I get a bad signal, lol

If you can get all the local digitals, including our WB that is broadcasting at half the power of my microwave oven, that is a pretty good start. If you're looking for a tough signal to pull in, try the toronto stations. If you're in Amherst it should be ~50 miles. I can pull in a 13% signal from the CBC on an MDP-130...not enough for a picture but enough to tease me. I'd like to know if you have any more luck with that Fusion-5
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post #20 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 03:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skiguy411 View Post

As of right now the HDTV Wonder studders a bit even with a strong signal.

PMFJI: My Fusion II card started studdering. After playing a lot with my ant., thinking I was getting multi-path, I finally determined the cause.

It was the Netgear WiFi pci card. Not its driver or interupt me thinks, but the WiFi signal being transmitted and being picked up by the FII.
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post #21 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 03:05 PM
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Hello i was wondering how you guys use the fusion when you have multiple sources you want to input. Such as an OTA antenna and cable since the fusion has only 1 input do you use a switch a-b box? i just purchased this card and was wondering my best choices for multiple inputs.
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post #22 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 03:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weren1 View Post

Hello i was wondering how you guys use the fusion when you have multiple sources you want to input. Such as an OTA antenna and cable since the fusion has only 1 input do you use a switch a-b box? i just purchased this card and was wondering my best choices for multiple inputs.

I'd just let a vcr or a cable box decode the analog signals and send them to the s-video/composite port.
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post #23 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Karyk View Post

Go to Radio Shack and buy about 10 4 to 1 splitters, and hook them all up in line, followed by an attenuator.

Don't know about prices, but wouldn't it be better just to get a few large attenuators? You only lose about 7db or so with the 1 to 4? splitters.
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post #24 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Schauer View Post

...GotAllMedia supports the Fusion card...

I've NEVER been able to get my Fusion 3QAM card working with GAM, using QAM, that is. No one else on the GAM forum seems to be able to make any concrete suggestions on how to get it to work, either, though some have mentioned that they've been able to mysteriously get it to work. I gave up once the paid version of the program came out (v4). If anyone can get any of the Fusion cards to work in QAM mode in GAM, please let me know.

Thanks,
jawgee
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post #25 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil Laffoon View Post

I'm not sure that this is the best time of the year to be testing for long distance reception anyway. Propagation is pretty good right now, and my F3 is getting excellent reception from over 70 miles. It's in the middle of winter when I can't get much, and would like to know if the new tuner will help. 'Course, multi-path issues are probably more common, and more consistent. Can't wait to hear some actual test results.

I'm not a scientist, but that sounds opposite to common sense to me, about reception in the spring being better than in the winter. I would think that all of the blooming trees would get in the way of the reception. Just curious...

Thanks,
jawgee
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post #26 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 04:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jawgee View Post

I'm not a scientist, but that sounds opposite to common sense to me, about reception in the spring being better than in the winter. I would think that all of the blooming trees would get in the way of the reception. Just curious...

Thanks,
jawgee

Plus cold air contains less H2O to attenuate the RF signal.
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post #27 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 04:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cliff Watson View Post

Plus cold air contains less H2O to attenuate the RF signal.

But, the warm moist air of summer and fall provide good temperature inversion conditions that reflect the RF signals back to the ground. Which is necessary for reception for those of us beyond the RF horizon.

I know it's not summer yet. But it sure feels like it here. Anyway, reception is good now, and it wasn't during this past winter.
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post #28 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 04:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Schauer View Post

This is also off-topic. Cliff, where's that dang UPS guy? I need some anecdotal evidence.

There's a thread on the HDTV Hardware forum where someone reported that the 30" LG display with the built-in 5G tuner didn't do anything extra for him.

Steve,

UPS guy arrived and have had time to do some testing and comparison to MyHD MDP-130 card.

The sensitive of F5 Lite and MDP-130 are absolutely identical! That's the good news and the bad news is that no OTA digital channels were found on the channel scan and some analog channels were missed. I was able to tune DTV channels by manually adding them to the list.

I tested both F5 Lite and MDP-130 connected to the same Silver Sensor using a splitter to both cards. On the high end (strong signal) both cards display about the same signal levels, however where the signal level is reduced the F5 gives a false indication of signal strength. With a combined -26dB tap the MDP-130 was still locked onto a signal at 21% and the F5 was still locked at 60% indication. A slight rotation of the antenna to the point that no video could be decoded from both the MDP-130 indicated 13% and F5 was showing 50%.

I started with the SS antenna in the optimal location and proceeded to add taps to the line until reducing the signal to be lowest threshold level. Channels where lost at the same time on both cards as the level was reduced. I then checked for signal lock (or lost signal) on off axis antenna position. Again both cards lost the signal at the same position.

Steve, this is not anecdotal evidence. I use pure scientology principals for this test.
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post #29 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 04:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MDK View Post

If you can get all the local digitals, including our WB that is broadcasting at half the power of my microwave oven, that is a pretty good start. If you're looking for a tough signal to pull in, try the toronto stations. If you're in Amherst it should be ~50 miles. I can pull in a 13% signal from the CBC on an MDP-130...not enough for a picture but enough to tease me. I'd like to know if you have any more luck with that Fusion-5

I'll give it a go. I've got the list of the toronto/ontario stations from remotecentral.com, so I'll tinker over the weekend and report back. I may need to wait until Tuesday when the E* guy comes to do my installation. I was going to hit him up to move my antenna from the attic to the roof. But, we'll see how it goes with it in the attic. Yeah, I spoke too soon, the WB is such a week signal for me too. But, again, I didn't stay at a Holiday Inn last night either:-) Till later.....
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post #30 of 2932 Old 06-03-2005, 04:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cliff Watson View Post

Steve, this is not anecdotal evidence. I use pure scientology principals for this test.

I didn't know you were from L.A.

Seriously though Cliff, it sounds like you were very thorough and I appreciate the feedback. I had a sneaking suspicion the claims might have been a bit overblown, but I was hoping.

How would you compare the sensitivity of the MDP-130 to the previous Fusion? Were they fairly even as well, or is the 5 an improvement?
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