Solutions for overheating cable box? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 05-12-2014, 03:00 PM - Thread Starter
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I have a commercial environment where I've got a cable box (DC757X) in a rack and the audio cuts out every minute or two, due to the box overheating. If I put a big box fan blowing on it, it works better but still overheats. I had a DCT2000 before that had the same problem, but this newer box is worse for some reason. Both are spec'ed with a max operating temperature of 104F, which just isn't enough for the environment it must be in.

What are my alternatives? Are there standalone receiver/tuners that take a cable card and don't require a PC? This box is used for audio, if I couldn't get video output it doesn't matter, and I definitely don't need/care about HD.

How about one of the little "digital tuning adapters"? Can you buy those anywhere? The one the cable company distributes doen't take a card cable but I guess I don't know for sure if it receives the encrypted channels at all - the audio channels are encrypted so I need that. The other problem is that it doesn't have audio outputs, only RF.
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post #2 of 9 Old 05-12-2014, 03:17 PM
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Is there no way to put the box in a more hospitable environment and then cable the signal into the are where it is needed? Trying to keep electronics happy without proper cooling is always going to be a problem and you will likely have more failures that you want to deal with.

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post #3 of 9 Old 05-12-2014, 06:54 PM
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post #4 of 9 Old 05-13-2014, 05:04 AM
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If it's on some kind of shelf....Middle Atlantic makes a couple of sizes of "Clamping" rack mounts (OCAP-2 and OCAP-3), that don't block the vertical air flow. They are made especially for STB's.
Also, they have a thermostat-controlled Fan Kit, which is handy. I've used them inside cabinets.

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post #5 of 9 Old 05-13-2014, 05:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the responses. Unfortunately there isn't really an option to put the box in a more "hospitable" location, but to be honest there are two Directv receivers, two big audio amplifiers, various other gear like a DSL modem, firewall, wireless router, multiple switches and other stuff and the stupid cable box is the only one that has trouble with the heat. The environment isn't ideal, but it is what it is. I've already got it separated from the equipment below by several inches, and about a 1/2" above - I can try to improve on that but it is probably as much the fact that the room itself gets quite warm as the heat surrounding it. Otherwise having the box fan blow directly on it would help, but if the air being blown through it is already warmer than it would like it won't help much.

That Samsung GX-SM530CF is the sort of thing I'm looking for, but unfortunately per the specs in its manual it draws up to 25 watts and the operating temperature range tops out at 95F - even less than the cable box! Maybe that's conservative, but I probably don't want to buy one (and a digital audio to RCA converter) only to find out it overheats too. If I can't find anything else maybe it'll be worth a shot.
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post #6 of 9 Old 05-13-2014, 05:52 AM
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The manual recommends a minimum of 1" separation. The picture shows top and sides. What is the side clearance of the box in the rack?

Since heat rises, being above or between the other equipment in the rack and only a 1/2" clearance on the top may be part of the issue. Also, if the bottom of the chassis is vented (not solid sheet) that would allow rising heat to enter easily.

How about relocating the problematic device to the bottom of the rack?
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post #7 of 9 Old 05-13-2014, 07:40 AM
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Put it below the two amps. Add feet/spacers to whatever box is on top of it.

 

I had same problem(s) until I moved my amp to top of stack.

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post #8 of 9 Old 05-13-2014, 08:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wajo View Post

Put it below the two amps.
And the....two Directv receivers, various other gear like a DSL modem, firewall, wireless router, multiple switches and other stuff. biggrin.gif
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post #9 of 9 Old 08-05-2014, 08:19 AM
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I don't know if you ended up trying a Samsung GX-SM530CF or not. I have two of them, one rack installed and one that just sits out. Overheating is a major issue with both, but only when working over wifi. The rack mounted device overheats in about 30 minutes streaming over wifi, but doesn't overheat when used as a cable card device. The one that sits in open air can run wifi for 1-2 hours before it overheats.
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