Can Anyone recommend the DTVPal DVR After Using it For One Year - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 82 Old 12-10-2009, 07:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

So I guess it's a matter of what you can tolerate.

That's really the key and the thresholds vary widely. Some people are willing to tolerate a lot to save a couple hundred dollars. It's like people with large-screen HDTV's who are willing to record in SD on DVD recorders for time-shifting. I don't get that one either.

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post #62 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 02:06 AM
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I was really happy with my DTVpal DVR for the whole 9 months I owned it. My wife would record all the kid programs for the kids and we would record all the stuff the kids can't watch and watch it after they went to bed. I would put probably 4 to 6 hrs of use in on it every day it was also my DTV tuner since my TV is only DTV ready. This last Tuesday my wife called me at work and said the DVR isn't working I came home and searched for answers to fix it online and tried upgrading the hard drive to no avail I am now DVR less. We are addicted and are going to go with a Tivo next time the 300 dollars I spent on this were a loss. I would be better off now if I would have just gone with the Tivo from the beginning but now that the Tivo has dropped in price I will gladly pay 2x the price for it with the lifetime sub. I just don't know how we can put up with this box I am willing to fix it myself but Dish will not sell parts and doesn't offer any kind of repair services. Again I didn't even make it a whole year with this product I still have VCR's and TV's that are like 12 years old and function like new and that is what I used to use everyday instead of the DVR. So if you are looking to save money, from my stand point your money is better spent going with the Tive I think it will first last longer that 9 months and if not it comes with a 1 year warranty and Tivo also has a repair shop for anything after that time. Any comments on this I am curious to know if I am the only one to have this issue we should get a running tallie. I know there are 4 other people at my work that we all thought this was a good idea and they haven't had any problems yet but the box has only been out a year I am currious to see if they start to drop with them as well see if this is a 1 in 10 kind of thing or more like 1 in 3 kind of deal. I did notice that my box ran hot and the other guys at work agree. When I opened it up it looked like it needed a bigger fan on it and could possible be saved by adding extra fans on the outside as a precausion to keep this box alive.

Again sorry for the grip session but I am angry and I don't usually get thsi way I just feel like I have been taken.
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post #63 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 05:26 AM
 
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Originally Posted by webmasterbill2 View Post

I wonder what the actual statistical failure/dissatisfaction rate is for this product. People are known to be more likely to state their dissatisfaction with an item than their satisfaction with it, so by nature the 'average' observable public comment on the PAL unfortunately would not necessarily be very positive.

Good points, Bill. Beyond even that, there is no reason to believe online comments have any relation to the actual level of satisfaction for a product and service. There is way too much of a bandwagon mentality online -- some suppliers are favorite targets of vitriol, while other suppliers seem to get a pass even in light of obvious failings. It's a essentially a popularity contents. The AVS Forum tries to be a bit better than that, though, but I think we would have to agree with you that it isn't immune from those effects.
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post #64 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 07:29 AM
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I know everyone wants a TiVO with lifetime service, but what if TiVO dies before your unit dies. (Never know in these times). Can you still make a manual recording with no guide info? The DTV PalDVR will work even if Dish and TVGOS go out of business. My HTPC tuner card will also still work assuming I download the software before they go out of business.

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 #65 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 07:52 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivartk View Post

I know everyone wants a TiVO with lifetime service, but what if TiVO dies before your unit dies. (Never know in these times). Can you still make a manual recording with no guide info?

It is impossible to answer the question, "What happens if TiVo ceases to exist?" until it occurs. The way our nation's laws are precludes an answer, since the law provides the courts the power to do things in such a situation that would nullify any answer to that question that might have been provided in advance.

If you're asking whether, right now, today, can you make a manual recording without a valid service contract on a TiVo HD, the answer is 'no'. A current subscription in good standing is necessary for setting up even manual recordings.

However, you're asking the wrong question. More specifically, you're presupposing part of the answer, i.e., that TiVo would "die". If TiVo reaches the point where it financial challenges are more than it can handle, then it will very likely be acquired by another company, who will consequently also acquire all of TiVo's liabilities and obligations, including those related to providing you service.
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post #66 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 12:08 PM
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I'm just waiting for the inevitable post with the customary "This isn't a TiVo thread - it's a DTVPal one - so can we please stop with the TiVo talk?".
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post #67 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 01:22 PM
 
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Hehe... and of course that would be posted right after the poster posting it posted a nasty piece about TiVo, eh? LOL!
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post #68 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

I'm just waiting for the inevitable post with the customary "This isn't a TiVo thread - it's a DTVPal one - so can we please stop with the TiVo talk?".

Sorry, I was trying to understand how the TiVO works in order to determine if you have a "Pro" to recommend the DTVPal DVR.

So, yes the DTVPal doesn't rely on any external service to exist in order to make a manual recording where the competition does.

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 #69 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 09:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivartk View Post

Sorry, I was trying to understand how the TiVO works in order to determine if you have a "Pro" to recommend the DTVPal DVR.

So, yes the DTVPal doesn't rely on any external service to exist in order to make a manual recording where the competition does.

When Replay went out of business and stopped selling/supporting their boxes, the ownership was still able to get guide data and continue using their equipment because someone picked up that piece of the business and continued to make money selling the guide data. I think it very likely the same would happen with TiVo were it to go down. Also the fact that you cannot make a manual recording without a valid account is a software limitation. If TiVo went down and no one were to pick up the guide data, a final software update could be sent to unlock the manual timer. I think holding out the possible failure of the company as a reason to not buy a TiVo is a straw dog.

Now that it is available at retail with a 2 yr warranty, buying a Pal DVR is much less of a risk than it was while the beta phase was going on. So now at $350 (including Sears warranty) it is $250 less than a TiVo HD ($180 less if you buy your TiVo lifetime activation on eBay; $150 less if you already have a TiVo and you are looking to buy a second DVR). So the question a prospective buyer has to ask their self is whether that cost savings is worth it. If they can tolerate the more limited DVR functionality and the recording unreliability, they will be happy with the Pal DVR and the money saved -- unless it dies in 25 months.

- kelson h

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post #70 of 82 Old 12-11-2009, 10:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

So the question a prospective buyer has to ask their self is whether that cost savings is worth it. If they can tolerate the more limited DVR functionality and the recording unreliability, they will be happy with the Pal DVR and the money saved -- unless it dies in 25 months.

Mine will probably be up for sale in a few weeks. A one year old unit that has had zero lock ups and 1 missed recording during that time. I guess I got lucky...I just like Windows 7 Media Center better and it eliminates a device from the rack.

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 #71 of 82 Old 12-12-2009, 12:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nugget_22 View Post

I was really happy with my DTVpal DVR for the whole 9 months I owned it. My wife would record all the kid programs for the kids and we would record all the stuff the kids can't watch and watch it after they went to bed. I would put probably 4 to 6 hrs of use in on it every day it was also my DTV tuner since my TV is only DTV ready. This last Tuesday my wife called me at work and said the DVR isn't working I came home and searched for answers to fix it online and tried upgrading the hard drive to no avail I am now DVR less. ...

Would you describe status of the failed Pal DVR in technical terms ?
What you see on screen when you reconnect power cord ? What LED is one ? Etc.
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post #72 of 82 Old 12-12-2009, 05:45 AM
 
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Originally Posted by sivartk View Post

So, yes the DTVPal doesn't rely on any external service to exist in order to make a manual recording where the competition does.

However, the DTVPal does rely on an external service (TVGOS) for program guide data. Not the same, I know, but still a reliance on an external service that folks should be aware of, especially in light of how many complaints I see have seen posted about TVGOS being lost from some market. Does the DTVPal allow you to direct its program guide toward another source -- an Internet source perhaps?
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post #73 of 82 Old 12-12-2009, 08:41 AM
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Originally Posted by bicker1 View Post

However, the DTVPal does rely on an external service (TVGOS) for program guide data. Not the same, I know, but still a reliance on an external service that folks should be aware of, especially in light of how many complaints I see have seen posted about TVGOS being lost from some market. Does the DTVPal allow you to direct its program guide toward another source -- an Internet source perhaps?

You can't use an external source for guide data, but you can schedule a recording with no guide data.
It looks at the following:

TVGOS data
PSIP data (required by FCC for stations to transmit)

Even if both of those don't exist (one sub-channel in my area), you can still schedule a recording just like a VCR. Choose channel, start time and duration.

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 #74 of 82 Old 12-12-2009, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by bfdtv View Post

Yes.

Beware of defective units on ebay, however, because Dish will not replace defective units after 90 days. If it were me, I would opt for a new unit from Sears, with the extended warranty for an extra $45.

You can still get a warranty if you buy on eBay. Here's how:

http://pages.ebay.com/help/warranty/buyer_overview.html
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post #75 of 82 Old 12-14-2009, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by P Smith View Post

Would you describe status of the failed Pal DVR in technical terms ?
What you see on screen when you reconnect power cord ? What LED is one ? Etc.

What I noticed is that it started to have more lock ups and was missing more recordings in the last 2 weeks or so. But when it finally failed it would try to turn on the screen it would flicker then it would just shut off with no LED's on. Once you unplugged it and tried to turn it on it would boot to the please wait screen then it would try to display the tuned data but instead it would either be black or would lock with the blue banner and a black screen. During boot it would have both red and green LED's on then it would go to green only and this would flicker when you would press button's on the remote. I think main chip got to hot and the majority of it is ok since it can boot as far as it does or the software some how got dumped on the floor but I don't know how to reload that. If you or anybody has any other suggestions I will try anything out?? I have nothing to loose.
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post #76 of 82 Old 12-14-2009, 11:15 AM
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First you could open it and see if a fan still working; then check the main CPU's temp after removing HDD and metal can's cap. Try disconnect HDD interface/power cable and run it disk-less.
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post #77 of 82 Old 12-14-2009, 01:35 PM
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I certainly cannot recommend the Pal DVR. I owned two of them one I received Dec.24th 2008 and the other I got in late Jan. 2009 the software, as most know was pretty terrible and by the time very early April came around(and after multiple live chats from two weeks after I received the second box) they agreed to swap my box only to find out by the time I had packed it up and shipped it that a new firmware was available that most likely would have fixed the rebooting/freezing. So got the replacement and they both worked for a while although I really disliked the timer type recording functionality. Then in Aug the same one I had swapped the tuner went out on. Then after over a week of multiple calls and incorrect info they said they would fix it so I called back to get the shipping tags sent out to me and was told that the RMA# I was given was over two years old and then she pretty much accused me of lying.

Later that same day someone else said he would see what he could do and that he would call me back on Monday;he did call and I was finally able to send it in. Much more drama and a month and a half later they tell me that it is to be sent back to me unfixed. I told them just how unacceptable that was and he asked me to hold so he could look something up. Then three minutes later or so a woman picked up and identified herself as elevated customer care or something similar then she told me she would do her own inquiry and get back to me.

Four days later she called and said the reason it was to by sent back to me is that Dish no longer sells or supports that product. So then almost feeling like a smart ass I asked "So do I just get issued a refund then?" and to my total surprise she said "we can do that." ((((And had I known that it would have taken this much effort and cause this much stress I would have just sold it as broken on Ebay for $20.00.))))

With that I knew what I had to do so once my refund came in I bought a TiVo HD then quickly sold my working Pal DVR and once I got that money I bought another TiVo HD.

Yes they cost more but you don't have 60% of the thread based completely on problems and TiVo has name based recording.
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post #78 of 82 Old 12-14-2009, 02:18 PM
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And I can vouch for the above person that our market (MSP) has a good working TVGOS provider, WCCO CBS digital 4.1, so the problems can't be caused by a poor TVGOS stream.
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post #79 of 82 Old 12-14-2009, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by P Smith View Post

First you could open it and see if a fan still working; then check the main CPU's temp after removing HDD and metal can's cap. Try disconnect HDD interface/power cable and run it disk-less.

I took out the fan and plugged it into my CPU's mother board and it was turning just fine so, now I am not thinking bad fan. I did remove the metal can on the CPU and it was warm and I tried booting with hair dryer set on cool on it made not difference. I tried to put the Hard Drive in my pc today and it didn't like it I was just trying to reformat it and had some difficulty but I will continue to work at it I will keep you posted if I have any real improvement.
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post #80 of 82 Old 12-14-2009, 06:33 PM
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hello, i've had my dtvpal for about 9 months - it has been working great - its a f202 version (i'm afraid to upgrade to the f209, i've heard of many problems after doing a upgrade) - as i said its been working great, then a couple of weeks ago it started rebooting itself, not to often sometimes twice a day, somedays not at all - then yesterday the remote seemed to stop working - i have a sony tv working on pals remote also, everthing was working fine - then as i said the remote seemed to quit - i soon realized that i could only turn pal off\\on if the tv was off (if tv was on, i could not turn pal off\\on) - and most of the time all the buttons would not work on pal but would operate the tv just fine - then i realized the the remotes buttons for operating the pal would work if i had the remote about an inch away from the pal recievers window - it seems like, somehow the sony tv is overpowering the pal - i've put knew batteries in remote, i am useing pal's remote - i'm wondering if somehow the infered signal between the tv and pal somehow crossed - is there away to remove my tv's info from my pal remote - i've tried redoing the tv to the remote, it didnt change anything - anyone else haveing this problem, any idle of a way to fix this - i really like this unit - i've phoned the rep's, they are useless - thanks for any and all help
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post #81 of 82 Old 12-14-2009, 07:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david111 View Post

hello, i've had my dtvpal for about 9 months - it has been working great - its a f202 version (i'm afraid to upgrade to the f209, i've heard of many problems after doing a upgrade) - as i said its been working great, then a couple of weeks ago it started rebooting itself, not to often sometimes twice a day, somedays not at all - then yesterday the remote seemed to stop working - i have a sony tv working on pals remote also, everthing was working fine - then as i said the remote seemed to quit - i soon realized that i could only turn pal off\\on if the tv was off (if tv was on, i could not turn pal off\\on) - and most of the time all the buttons would not work on pal but would operate the tv just fine - then i realized the the remotes buttons for operating the pal would work if i had the remote about an inch away from the pal recievers window - it seems like, somehow the sony tv is overpowering the pal - i've put knew batteries in remote, i am useing pal's remote - i'm wondering if somehow the infered signal between the tv and pal somehow crossed - is there away to remove my tv's info from my pal remote - i've tried redoing the tv to the remote, it didnt change anything - anyone else haveing this problem, any idle of a way to fix this - i really like this unit - i've phoned the rep's, they are useless - thanks for any and all help

You should try the dedicated DTVPal DVR thread. You'll probably have better luck there.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1099071
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post #82 of 82 Old 12-14-2009, 07:55 PM
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thanks, i'll check it out
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