The Official AVS Dish DTVPal DVR Topic! - Page 205 - AVS Forum
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post #6121 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 07:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord_Zath View Post

Yes, I saw that there were three different companies I could buy from. I'm asking specifically which one you guys agree is the best. SolidSignal seems kinda shady from the research I did, but I haven't found anything on the other two.

So can anyone please give me an actual answer? Thanks!

Hi,

I bought mine directly from Dish. Since this unit seems to be work in progress, I thought it best to buy from the manufacturer in order to make it easier to send back if I have too.

I hope this helps.

Ken M
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post #6122 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 08:47 AM
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OTA 62 guide data has been missing for days. Whats up? Is it just my system?
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post #6123 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 08:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by golinux View Post

Well, I've even tried the antenna directly to the DVR and it's still screwed up. I don't think it's the Pal though as the Zenith DTT901 and Zinwell have equally poor reception on 7.

FCC severely underestimated the power needed for the VHF digital transmitters.
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post #6124 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 09:11 AM
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Just a quick question for you folks in the Dayton, Ohio region: Is anyone around here receiving TVGOS guide info yet?

I understand that WHIO TV was having a problem with their encoding/transmitting box, but it's been a couple of weeks since I've gotten TVGOS, and I just need reassurance that the problem lies with WHIO, not my DTVPal!

Thanks!

Ken
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post #6125 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DB100 View Post

One of the TV channels in my area is weak. My 'DTVPal Plus' could hold onto it, while my 'DTVPal DVR' cannot. I just figured the reason is the DVR has two tuners, so wouldn't that mean the signal was being split internally? So it would make sense that a single tuner 'Plus' could get a channel that a double tuner 'DVR' couldn't.

Actually it is being split 3 ways internally, two to the tuners and one for analog pass-through to your TV. But they were smart. There's a low gain amplifier ahead of the splitter and that maintains the noise figure of the system. I used a spectrum analyzer to measure the signal level into the DVR and out of the DVR and it is a few dB stronger leaving the DVR.

I've run numerous tests on both weak signals and high multipath signals using my Sony SXRD as the tuner, the DVR as the tuner, and the output of the DVR going to the Sony and in no case have I seen more than a fraction of a dB difference in performance. That's so small that it's essentially identical performance.

The only thing I can say about the difference you experienced between the DTVPal and the DTVPal DVR is that you should run a number of tests over time since OTA signals vary a little bit all the time and very weak signals may teeter on the digital cliff over very short periods of time so one tuner might appear to be better than another in only a couple of tests.
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post #6126 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 10:03 AM
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Just a few comments.....

After all the positive comments about F208 I upgraded and it's fine. I'm especially happy that the audio start delay has been reduced to perhaps 1/2 second. That's essentially a non-issue for me now.

I use a Mac to download the upgrade and unzip the file on the Mac to the .exe file. Works fine.

I'm using a 1GB Kingston USB memory stick that was free when I purchased a 4GB card for a digital camera. It's called a DataTraveler, P/N CH 061108. Works fine in the DVR and with Macs and PCs.
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post #6127 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 10:35 AM
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Solid Signal shady? Not the experience I've had with them. I've made at least 10 purchases at different times for various items and never had a problem.

I too have had good luck with Solid Signal, and never a problem.
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post #6128 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 11:27 AM
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Last night I started watching a recording before it was finished and the part that was recorded after I started watching had alot of dropout and glitching. It may have been a strange coincidences, but the first hour and a half was perfect and the last half hour was like the signal was cut 20%. Anyone else had this happen, BTW I am still on 207.
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post #6129 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 11:42 AM
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Some general comments:

For years I've used a Panasonic DMR-E80H HHD/DVD recorder for my TV viewing. Commercials can be 6 minutes long on the Sunday news shows, and I don't know how anyone can watch live TV. Then digital TV hit and things started to change. My Panasonic was still chugging along, but once you've seen HDTV it gets harder to watch the analog recording. Then I stumbled on this Forum and learned about the DTVPal DVR and decided to try it out. Yahoooooo! I can now record in HD, plus record two shows at once.

I use two antennas, one points at a single weak channel and goes to the Panasonic, and the other to the DTVPal. I live in the mountains of western NC and don't get a lot of channels so I need to grab everything I can. I envy all the big-city folks on this forum who rattle off a long list of channels they get.

The one thing about the DTVPal I miss the most, is I can't edit and archive a recording like I can with the Panasonic. If I could just move the recording over to an external drive in a Windows file format (say a .ts file) I could edit it there and back it up for safe keeping.
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post #6130 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 11:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTV Sparky View Post

Solid Signal shady?
Not the experience I've had with them. I've made at least 10 purchases at different times for various items and never had a problem.
I wouldn't hesitate making a purchase . I'm sure some may have had horror stories, but overall, I think there one of the more reliable online places to purchase from.

ditto
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post #6131 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tzdvl View Post

Just a quick question for you folks in the Dayton, Ohio region: Is anyone around here receiving TVGOS guide info yet?

I understand that WHIO TV was having a problem with their encoding/transmitting box, but it's been a couple of weeks since I've gotten TVGOS, and I just need reassurance that the problem lies with WHIO, not my DTVPal!

Thanks!

Ken

Still no TVGOS. I sent an email yesterday but don't have an answer yet. The engineer is Chuck Eastman @ 259-2111 or chuck.eastman@whiotv.com.
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post #6132 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DB100 View Post

Some general comments:

For years I've used a Panasonic DMR-E80H HHD/DVD recorder for my TV viewing. Commercials can be 6 minutes long on the Sunday news shows, and I don't know how anyone can watch live TV. Then digital TV hit and things started to change. My Panasonic was still chugging along, but once you've seen HDTV it gets harder to watch the analog recording. Then I stumbled on this Forum and learned about the DTVPal DVR and decided to try it out. Yahoooooo! I can now record in HD, plus record two shows at once.

I use two antennas, one points at a single weak channel and goes to the Panasonic, and the other to the DTVPal. I live in the mountains of western NC and don't get a lot of channels so I need to grab everything I can. I envy all the big-city folks on this forum who rattle off a long list of channels they get.

The one thing about the DTVPal I miss the most, is I can't edit and archive a recording like I can with the Panasonic. If I could just move the recording over to an external drive in a Windows file format (say a .ts file) I could edit it there and back it up for safe keeping.

I have an E85 but I am not familiar with the E80. If it has TVGOS I suggest you buy a DTVPal+. It has a mode that will convert the digital TVGOS to analog so you can still use it to record in SD then you can edit, skip for n minutes and all the good stuff that the Panasonic will do. If you set it for extended resolution it looks pretty good.

For something you want to keep you can play the DVR into the E80 and then edit it but that is a lot of work.
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post #6133 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 01:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WillN937 View Post

I have an E85 but I am not familiar with the E80. If it has TVGOS I suggest you buy a DTVPal+. It has a mode that will convert the digital TVGOS to analog so you can still use it to record in SD then you can edit, skip for n minutes and all the good stuff that the Panasonic will do. If you set it for extended resolution it looks pretty good.

For something you want to keep you can play the DVR into the E80 and then edit it but that is a lot of work.


Actually DTV Pal also has TVGOS Mode that you can test to use to pass TVGOS to E80/E85 to test if the setup will work for you.

You got to be nuts; you want me to pay to watch commercials?
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post #6134 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 02:47 PM
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>>For something you want to keep you can play the DVR into the E80 and then edit it but that is a lot of work.

What I want to do is preserve the HD aspect of the DTVPal recording. Passing it to the Panasonic would convert it to SD - not good.
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post #6135 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 02:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmz44 View Post

Thanks for the replys. No splitters involved. Each PAL has its own set of rabbit ears. Yes they are different brands. After today I don't dare try the set of ears in the living room. I have spent hours trying to tune in Ch 6 again after earlier messing with it trying to get both Ch 6 & 13. I should have left it alone with just Ch 6 & forgot Ch 13. Stupid me.

I've tried two separate sets of ears, tried moving the ears away from the PAL & TV & when those didn't work, went out & bought a new set of ears. Guess what. The new ears don't work either. I'm so frustrated I could spit.

I do think there might be something going on re how this PAL handles the VHF signal. I should get a total of 4 VHF stations and I only get 1 at this point:

Can't get Analog Ch 6 at freq 85000 on Digital Ch 6
Ch 13 at freq 207000 on Digital Ch 12
Ch 51 at freq 213000 on Digital Ch 13

All of the UHF stations come in fine (Digital Ch 26, 34 & 43). The other anomaly I can't reconcile is VHF Digital Ch 7 on freq 177000 comes in fine.

Tomorrow I think I will head to Radio Shack & try a 4th set of ears. Any recommendations on type. Thanks

I was getting all the broadcast stations here in Scotia using a Winegard SS3000 antenna. Until CBS6 moved from UHF to low VHF channel 6. Then I tried adding a Terk HDTV plus amplifier. I am not using the UHF portion of this antenna. I just wanted the amplified rabbit ears. I added this to my Winegard by using a FM,VHF,UHF splitter/joiner . I have about 5 and a half feet of rabbit ear spread out parallel to the floor - not pointing up. I now get all available stations ...........
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post #6136 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 04:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WillN937 View Post

I have an E85 but I am not familiar with the E80. If it has TVGOS I suggest you buy a DTVPal+. It has a mode that will convert the digital TVGOS to analog so you can still use it to record in SD then you can edit, skip for n minutes and all the good stuff that the Panasonic will do. If you set it for extended resolution it looks pretty good.

For something you want to keep you can play the DVR into the E80 and then edit it but that is a lot of work.

E85 was the first with TVGOS, thus the E80H doesn't have it. I have one, somewhere...closet maybe. Composite out from the DTVPal to the E80H and you will get some very good SD widescreen recordings. If you use DVD-RAM's, it will maintain the 16:9 flag and it will fill your screen, otherwise the E80H places the image in a letter box which needs to be zoomed...not good.

At no point in your rambling, incoherent post were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this forum is now dumber for having read it.

My Little Theater
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post #6137 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 07:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DB100 View Post

>>For something you want to keep you can play the DVR into the E80 and then edit it but that is a lot of work.

What I want to do is preserve the HD aspect of the DTVPal recording. Passing it to the Panasonic would convert it to SD - not good.

For that, you need a TiVo HD. You connect it to your home network and send the recordings to your PC for editing and burning in HD/5.1 if you choose -- or keep them on a big HDD farm and send them back to the TiVo for playing.

- kelson h

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post #6138 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 07:26 PM
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I have since upgraded to F208. Everything seems to be working fine since then. Besides the previous mentioned quirks, has anyone noticed when playing back a recorded program, when it reaches the end of the program, the screen just stays on the last video frame and does not go back to the program information screen? The unit is not really locked up, but in previous versions when the video ended, it went back to the screen with the play, resume, delete, etc buttons. Now it appears to just hang on the last video frame till I switch channels using the guide etc. Am I the only one who noticed this? Like I said, F208 seems to have fixed most items, but this one seems to be happening every time the video ends.
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post #6139 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 07:34 PM
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I always hit Stop, then Delete when the closing credits have finished, so I never see the last frame in the title...
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post #6140 of 18294 Old 07-20-2009, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DB100 View Post

Some general comments:



I use two antennas, one points at a single weak channel and goes to the Panasonic, and the other to the DTVPal. I live in the mountains of western NC and don't get a lot of channels so I need to grab everything I can. I envy all the big-city folks on this forum who rattle off a long list of channels they get.


The one thing about the DTVPal I miss the most, is I can't edit and archive a recording like I can with the Panasonic. If I could just move the recording over to an external drive in a Windows file format (say a .ts file) I could edit it there and back it up for safe keeping.

I know how you feel about the not getting many channels as I too live in western NC. I was just wondering if you are getting TVGOS. I have read that some western NC channels have stat transmitting TVGOS , but I have not been able to pick it up yet.
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post #6141 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 04:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by outatime2001 View Post

I know how you feel about the not getting many channels as I too live in western NC. I was just wondering if you are getting TVGOS. I have read that some western NC channels have stat transmitting TVGOS , but I have not been able to pick it up yet.

It's my understanding that TVGOS is provided by CBS. I don't get CBS. I only get NBC, PBS, & FOX. With so few stations, the normal epg works fine.

Prior to getting the DTVPal DVR I was capturing HD programming on my laptop, using a USB external tuner and free software (GBPVR.com). This software downloaded programming information from SchedulesDirect (schedulesdirect.com). An account with SchedulesDirect costs $20 a year. The resulting program guide is very thorough, plus I found free software for my Palm pda that also used SchedulesDirect, and I had a complete listing there. So for now I'm covered on the programming guide front.

It's a real disappointment to me that local newspapers don't support local digital programming. Their Sunday edition has complete program listings for cable, but nothing for digital. I stopped buying the Sunday paper for that reason.
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post #6142 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 06:20 AM
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Has anyone been able to find a new training manual for TVGOS for the digital system?
I Emailed and then called Sony, but they were of no help what so ever.
Perhaps someone here with a newer tv which has a later version of TVGOS using the digital guide could check it out with their tv manufacturer. Sure would be helpful to know what screens and pertinent information is needed on order to acquire a grid and listings.
Thanks,
Michael
PS;posted this on the DHG-HDD and TVGOS forums as well.
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post #6143 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 07:24 AM
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Just a comment about my experience with the F208 firmware upgrade.

I decided to upgrade last weekend (from F206 to F208), primarily for the change to one-hour units in the No Information Available periods when there is no guide data.

Although I've been getting TVGOS data for a while on the "main" channels (xxx.1), I was getting limited guide info (< 24 hours) on many of the "sub" channels (xxx.2, etc.). I just assumed that the local stations weren't providing that info on all the sub-channels.

To my surprise, since the upgrade, I am now getting more guide data (multiple days) on those same "sub" channels. So now that I can finally record on those "No Information Available" periods, I don't really need it .

Not sure why the F208 upgrade triggered that, but it was a pleasant surprise.

Anyway, I would recommend that most folks upgrade to F208, if they are having any issues on an earlier firmware release. As I recall, we haven't heard of any downside to the F208 upgrade on this forum, and there are definitely some benefits.
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post #6144 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 08:00 AM
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Another positive experience with Solid Signal !

.

There he goes again... Good Ol' R. Reagan's favorite Troll line !
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post #6145 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 08:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Dmon4u View Post

Another positive experience with Solid Signal !

I finally took the plunge and ordered on Sat. Just received shipping notice and it's scheduled for delivery tomorrow. Very satisfied so far.

I was looking at a used unit on ebay, but they seem to hold value good, as the last one I followed ended at $229. Not worth it to me saving less then $30 and getting no warranty, even though it is only 90 days.
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post #6146 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 08:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vcbaker60 View Post

Just a comment about my experience with the F208 firmware upgrade.

I decided to upgrade last weekend (from F206 to F208), primarily for the change to one-hour units in the No Information Available periods when there is no guide data.

Although I've been getting TVGOS data for a while on the "main" channels (xxx.1), I was getting limited guide info (< 24 hours) on many of the "sub" channels (xxx.2, etc.). I just assumed that the local stations weren't providing that info on all the sub-channels.

To my surprise, since the upgrade, I am now getting more guide data (multiple days) on those same "sub" channels. So now that I can finally record on those "No Information Available" periods, I don't really need it .

Not sure why the F208 upgrade triggered that, but it was a pleasant surprise.

Anyway, I would recommend that most folks upgrade to F208, if they are having any issues on an earlier firmware release. As I recall, we haven't heard of any downside to the F208 upgrade on this forum, and there are definitely some benefits.

Can anyone else with 208 confirm this? I'm running 206 and it's working well enough that I don't want to mess with it unless I know that the upgrade will provide program info for the subchannels. I record kids programming off of the PBS Kids subchannel because it's in SD and therefore uses less storage, but a lot of the recordings have no description of the episode. I would upgrade to F208 if it fixes that.
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post #6147 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 08:23 AM
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Thanks for the feedback. Precisely what I needed!

I'll be ordering this in a few days!
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post #6148 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 08:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cgreco View Post

Can anyone else with 208 confirm this? I'm running 206 and it's working well enough that I don't want to mess with it unless I know that the upgrade will provide program info for the subchannels. I record kids programming off of the PBS Kids subchannel because it's in SD and therefore uses less storage, but a lot of the recordings have no description of the episode. I would upgrade to F208 if it fixes that.

I get all sub-channel TVGOS data in my area (3 PBS, 1 CBS with Retro TV) with F206...so maybe, maybe not.

At no point in your rambling, incoherent post were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this forum is now dumber for having read it.

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post #6149 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 08:38 AM
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I upgraded to F208 on 7/10 and have been very happy with the upgrade except for one occasional annoyance that was mentioned by someone else some time ago. Since the upgrade I have had the inactivity countdown timer show up 4-5 times every time within 5 minutes of turning the unit on. It was set for 4 hours and after the second time I disabled it all together since I always turn the unit off when I'm not watching. It has continued to appear even after I disabled the inactivity timer.

This is by no means as frustrating as the multiple nightly reboots previous to F206 but still a bit annoying.

Additionally for those that upgraded FW and are not getting TVGOS and/or more guide data may well be due to the unit being reset as part of the upgrade process so now it's looking for TVGOS data again.
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post #6150 of 18294 Old 07-21-2009, 09:09 AM
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Here is some insight into why some USB Flash Drives work on the Dish DTVPal DVR, and some do not. First a few comments on Dish's lack of support or help with this problem.

Dish's coders probably do not have the full knowledge needed to provide an on-board OS that has the ability to talk to ALL the USB Flash Drives out there. There are many variables and it may be beyond their abilities. Their support people have no clue about the issues involved and their marketing probably does not allow for the expense of troubleshooting these kinds of problems. After repeated questions, their response, even though they are the ones requiring the use of a USB Flash Drive to update their firmware, is the following - believe it or not!

"We do not compile a list of compatible or incompatible non-Dish equipment"
'Unfortunately, as stated before in my previous emails, we do not have this information. Our engineering department does not publish logs of compatible or incompatible non-Dish equipment, so I do not have the information to provide to you."


I contacted the big three of USB Flash Drives and here are the results, with the last response the most useful.

SanDisk= They did not offer any meaningful support - only links to subjects not related to my questions. Another message 2 weeks later that did not speak to my questions and did not offer useful information.

Kingston= A reply which seems logical:

Hello,

It is true that all USB devices require a driver to work in an OS. But the driver that is needed is the same for almost all USB storage devices. For example, When you plug a USB drive into a Windows computer, it uses the built in USB mass storage driver. It is very rare for a USB storage device to need an external driver. This usually only occurs if the device does not meet certain standards that should be common to all USB storage drives.

So the problem is unlikely a driver issue. I suspect the problem has more to do with a hardware conflict. It is possible that the DVR is not compatible with specific components the flash drives are made with. USB drive makers build their drives using a variety of components. For example, drives made by the same company with the same part number may be made with different brands of components. Although these components would have the same specifications, this could create a situation where one works and another may not. Although this type of thing is very unusual with USB flash drives being used in computers, we have seen it occur with devices such as SD cards being used with digital cameras or CF cards in embedded systems. Because this device is not a traditional computer, this type of hardware conflict may occur with this DVR and some USB flash drives. If this is indeed a hardware issue, it either cannot be resolved or must be resolved by some type of firmware update.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to reply to this e-mail with full email history. Thank you for using Kingston on-line technical support.

Regards,

Glenn Neumeister
Kingston Technology
Technical Support

Crucial= They gave the most details

Thank you for contacting us. Your assumptions are partially correct. There is a generic set of USB drives in Windows, that enables nearly any USB drive to work with that operating system. This is usually also the case with Linux systems, however, one of the disadvantages of Linux is that there are a lot more variables in the OS than you would find in Windows.

It is possible that the USB drive needs to be formatted a certain way, for example FAT16 instead of FAT32, or FAT32 instead of NTFS. It is also possible that drives above a certain capacity may not work. I apologize for the vague answer, but without knowing more about the driver itself, the Linux kernel and versions, as well as the USB drives that worked and did not work, it is hard for me to be specific. Add to the above that the kernel used on the DVRs may well be a customized one, and you end up with far too many variables and not enough information to be able to say anything for certain.

The long and short of it is that although USB drives may not be entirely the same they are still similar enough for one generic Windows driver to cover them all. Unfortunately, Linux is far more picky, and a custom Linux would be even more so. As much as I hate to say it, your best option is to try and obtain a list of USB drives known to work with the DVR, and use drives from that list.

If you have further questions, please contact our technical support department. Try our 24-hour online chat service at http://www.lexar.com/support/. At Lexar, we are committed to providing high-quality products and reliable service and support.

Best Regards,

Kicki Lindahl
Technical Support Analyst
Tel: (800) 363-4309
Fax: (208) 363-5501
mailto:crucial.support@micron.com

BOTTON LINE=

You will get no help from Dish support.
You are on your own to find a USB Flash Drive that works.
A current model drive from any of the big three "may probably" work.
There is a remote chance that Dish may issue a firmware update in the future to help with this problem.

I leave it to others to compile a list of good drives and post the information in a useful spot.
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