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HDTV Recorders > SA/Cisco 8*** series DVR's Tips and tricks using Cox's Passport Echo software
hdcrack's Avatar hdcrack 02:45 AM 01-25-2012
Been busy since my 11-18-2011 post. Finally got a chance to try again. Since last time I have changed my audio hookup from HDMI to optical cable for the cable TV. Was unable to reformat XHD (My DVR Expander 500GB) as the WD tech had suggested! Since This XHD had already been formatted when I first hooked it up to my SA8240HDC after the software update, my only option was to Accept when it was recognized by my DVR. Same issues; audio drops out, pixellation & picture freezes. I did try a new eSATA cable and had the same, exact bad results so, that proves it is not the cable. Either the XHD or power supply is bad or the SATA port on the DVR or the software update isn't the fix.

I went to channel 1999 & scrolled to DVR INFO & see Bad Cluster Count: -12(0). However, when I d/c the XHD that entry remains unchanged. Anyone with a working XHD see -12(0)? When scroll to SATA says authorized & several entries saying the drive is OK, when I d/c the XHD lose the entries stating OK since nothing connected but, still see Authorized. I wonder if that really means that the SATA port on the DVR is OK?

Cox tells me that this week they now offer a new model HDDVR for an EXTRA $10.00 per month compared to the current HDDVRs. Cisco 8642HDC with a 500GB HD. That s/b enough for 62.5 hours of HD programming. Figuring 8GB per 1 hr of HD. Supposedly Cox will NOT allow you to just go & pick it up & set it up yourself. They make you pay a service call of $79.99. BTW, Cox is raising all their rates now.

Anyone have any experience with this new Cisco 8642HDC with a 500GB HD? Why don't they let us install it ourselves? Additional programming required?

I'm undecided as to what to do next. I hate having only 20 hrs. HD capacity. WIth XHD prices still very high, I'm reluctant to get a new 1 TB one to try. If prices drop, I may yet try Bryan's WD Caviar Black.
Problems have been reported with the WD 1 TB My DVR Expander.

Anyone know how to force my XHD to reformat rather than just giving me the option to accept or decline using it with the DVR? I cannot hook it up to a computer.

Demodave's Avatar Demodave 11:06 AM 01-25-2012
The new DVR is Cox's Whole-Home DVR. Once you update to the new DVR and update your STB's to the newer Cisco model on your other TV's, you will have full DVR capability on up to 5 TV's. The system utilizes your existing coax to create a network between all of your TV's. The reason for the $80 installation cost is so Cox can check and upgrade your coax plus install needed filters on your main line.

http://ww2.cox.com/residential/lasve...us-package.cox
kingpcgeek's Avatar kingpcgeek 11:44 AM 01-25-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Demodave View Post

The new DVR is Cox's Whole-Home DVR. Once you update to the new DVR and update your STB's to the newer Cisco model on your other TV's, you will have full DVR capability on up to 5 TV's.

Yet you still get only two tuners for recording and a whopping 500gb of storage, welcome to 2005 Cox. Tivo is now offering a 4 tuner, 2TB DVR and DirecTV is offering a 5 tuner, 1TB DVR. Dish is offering a convoluted new solution that theoretically offers 6 tuners for recording as log as three of those are the major networks.

I have been waiting for years to see what Cox would come up with, now that they have its a dud. I am making the switch to Tivo, my 4 tuner DVR will be here Monday.
vegggas's Avatar vegggas 11:49 AM 01-25-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by hdcrack View Post

Been busy since my 11-18-2011 post. Finally got a chance to try again. Either the XHD or power supply is bad or the SATA port on the DVR or the software update isn't the fix.

I'm undecided as to what to do next. I hate having only 20 hrs. HD capacity.

Try a new Power supply - That can happen when the power is starting to fluctuate and can't sustain the current needed to record to the drive. Just get one with the same voltage, polarity and at least as many amps. It's all there on the side of the power supply and a replacement might be around your home or easily available at a variety of stores that sell any type of electronics.
hdcrack's Avatar hdcrack 12:48 AM 01-28-2012
Thanks to all who replied!

Demodave, Good explanation & shows me this is not the option for me. I have only 1 HDTV & the others are SDTV & rarely used. Absolutely no interest in watching a show or movie on more than 1 TV. I set up my HT in the main room & that's where I want to watch. Not on my phone, or on a small TV or in bed etc. I realize many people think otherwise.

kingpcpeek, that TIVO 2TB model with 4 tuners sounds awesome! I think that would be 250 hours of HD programming storage! Does that mean you can record 3 different HD programs on 3 different channels all at the same time while you surf other channels? Or 4 programs & you cannot surf other channels? Even if you never record 4 at once that would help a lot with recording every show 1 minute b4 & one minute after. Would you please tell us how your new TIVO works with Cox TV service? Did you get a Cox Cable card & how much did the TIVO cost you & how much did Cox charge you for the cable card? I think you buy the TIVO + pay a monthly cost & a monthly cost for the Cox cable card too. + the Cox costs for the various packages. I'm sure costs are complex. This may be a solution for me.

Vegggas, Yes a new power supply would be a nice test. I don't have any spares lying about. I'd need to check all my other devices to see if any match the WD one (doubtful) & borrow it if I have it. Or buy one & maybe find out it was not the issue & waste money. BTW, I've had the power supply go bad twice on my LaCie XHD I use for Time Machine with my Mac. Each Time the issue was failure to mount. But, you're saying if it fluctuates, it may explain my symptoms. Here it is:
18W Power Adapter for My Book and My DVR Expander
A replacement or additional power supply for My Book external hard drives.
Model: WDPS037RNN
$14.99
http://store.westerndigital.com/stor...ctID.108411100


I would like to hear from others who got this software update for the SA8240 HDC & now use an XHD with good results. What XHD are they using?
hdcrack's Avatar hdcrack 01:24 AM 01-28-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by hdcrack View Post

Vegggas, Here it is:
18W Power Adapter for My Book and My DVR Expander
A replacement or additional power supply for My Book external hard drives.
Model: WDPS037RNN
$14.99
http://store.westerndigital.com/stor...ctID.108411100

No! Wrong for mine! I just looked.

My WD My DVR Expander 500GB is
model WD500F032

I looked & my power supply is:
Model ADS-24S-12 1224GPCU
Input: 100-240V 50/60 Hz
Max 700mA 50VA
Output: 12V 2A

http://www.amazon.com/Adapter-Extern...7738478&sr=1-2
kingpcgeek's Avatar kingpcgeek 12:19 PM 01-30-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by hdcrack View Post

kingpcpeek, that TIVO 2TB model with 4 tuners sounds awesome! I think that would be 250 hours of HD programming storage! Does that mean you can record 3 different HD programs on 3 different channels all at the same time while you surf other channels? Or 4 programs & you cannot surf other channels? Even if you never record 4 at once that would help a lot with recording every show 1 minute b4 & one minute after. Would you please tell us how your new TIVO works with Cox TV service? Did you get a Cox Cable card & how much did the TIVO cost you & how much did Cox charge you for the cable card? I think you buy the TIVO + pay a monthly cost & a monthly cost for the Cox cable card too. + the Cox costs for the various packages. I'm sure costs are complex. This may be a solution for me.

Tivo will be here today so I have not hooked it up. I believe a CableCard is $2 per month. You you can record 3 shows while watching another live, or record 4 shows while watching a 5th that has been recorded.
hdcrack's Avatar hdcrack 02:29 PM 01-30-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by kingpcgeek View Post

Tivo will be here today so I have not hooked it up. I believe a CableCard is $2 per month. You you can record 3 shows while watching another live, or record 4 shows while watching a 5th that has been recorded.

I am very interested in hearing how well it works with Cox HD programing! Any glitches, or audio dropouts or pixelation of picture freezes, etc.
BTW, where did you buy the TIVO, what model # & what did it cost you? If it works it was well worth it! I recall in 2009, Cox had major issues with Cable Cards & TIVOs would not work well with Cox.
bexx5's Avatar bexx5 04:27 PM 02-15-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by CottyGee View Post

Just responded to "Matt" about the beta testing. We'll see if I get a reply. Got a setup I just tried on a 8240HDC, which of course failed. Called Cox and spoke to a lady who told me they don't support DVR expansion drives. Hope I get a reply to test...


I also have an 8240HDC and live in Phoenix. Cox says I can't hook up an eSATA drive to it. Can you send me the Cox email address you sent your request to? Or do I have to be contacted by Cox first?

If I can't get the 8240HDC to work, is it worth asking Cox to get another model? If so, which one should I ask for?

Thank you!

UPDATE: I read further back and found the email address (AZ.CoxArizonaHelp@cox.com) originally posted by Bryan_CoxPHX. Hopefully I will receive a reply. Assuming this works, my next question is, which eSATA drive should I buy?
Bryan_CoxPHX's Avatar Bryan_CoxPHX 05:18 PM 02-15-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by bexx5 View Post

I also have an 8240HDC and live in Phoenix. Cox says I can't hook up an eSATA drive to it. Can you send me the Cox email address you sent your request to? Or do I have to be contacted by Cox first?

If I can't get the 8240HDC to work, is it worth asking Cox to get another model? If so, which one should I ask for?

Thank you!

UPDATE: I read further back and found the email address (AZ.CoxArizonaHelp@cox.com) originally posted by Bryan_CoxPHX. Hopefully I will receive a reply. Assuming this works, my next question is, which eSATA drive should I buy?

Cox AZ Social Media is using a new email address, perhaps because I posted the old one so much,

The new Email is CoxArizona.Help @ cox.com
hdcrack's Avatar hdcrack 03:01 AM 02-17-2012
I'll repost & if there is some issue, hopefully, someone will tell me.


We haven't heard back from kingpcgeek re his new Tivo. I did some research.
Tivo Premiere Elite Tcd758250 High-definition Digital Video Recorder

$499.99 from Tivo, slightly less from Amazon, same warranty.
Plus you MUST purchase Tivo service from Tivo. Either $19.99 per month or $499.99 up front for lifetime Tivo service.
You must hook your Tivo up to the Internet for it to work. If you are far from your router as is my case, you must purchase an adapter which is $89.99 for an N speed wireless adapter. It is a bit cheaper for a G speed one. But, if you already have an N router you probably should keep that speed. So, upfront costs are about $1,090! Possibly plus tax.

If I switched to Tivo from Cox HDDVR rental my net Cox bill will decrease $17.23, that is after deducting two charges for DVR & DVR service + adding $2.00 for the Cox Cable Card.

I Read through the Tivo manual (On their website) & it seems very impressive.

With this DVR you have 4 tuners (Cox has 2) So record 4 shows at once.
Up to 300 hours of HD programming on the 2 TB HD! I think Cox DVRs have 160 GB with Approx 20 hrs, HD space.

One button to FF 30 seconds! Still get the 8 sec RW function.

Programming overlap protection if have conflicts If you had a 5th show to record & it overlapped by 1 minute instead of not recording one show, it would just cut the 1 minute overlap on the lesser priority show.

Can order your list of shows to record entire season by priority just as with Cox. (Called Season Pass on Tivo)

Can add a 1 TB WD My DVR Expander to get even more space.

Can add padding b4 & after a show as with Cox (1 minute b4, etc.)

Has ability to burn DVD of many recorded shows if you purchase separate software from Roxio. On PC or Mac. Free desktop software for your computer.

I calculate the payback or break even period about 63 months so over 5 years. So the switch would be expensive. But, the Tivo DVR & service seems to beat Cox's DVRs & service by a large margin.

There is a 30 day guarantee where you can get all your money back.
You can also start out with the $19.99 per month & w/in that 30 days switch to the $499.99 lifetime service.

I may do this.

Would love to hear from anyone who has made the switch. I'm wondering if there are any issues with the service or anything I have not considered.
Bryan_CoxPHX's Avatar Bryan_CoxPHX 04:43 AM 02-17-2012
I can't speak for the TiVo Elite, But I love my TiVo Premiere - upgraded to a 2TB WD-AV WD20EURS HDD. (HDDs are too expensive to upgrade at the moment, due to shortages, I paid $79 for the WD20EURS in September)

If you do buy the Elite, get it from Amazon so you can save the tax, buy the $499 lifetime service, and purchase the 3yr extended warranty from TiVo after activation. If you only buy the regular Premiere for < $99, don't bother with the extended warranty, just upgrade the HDD when prices come back down. or buy an upgrade drive from Ebay: http://www.ebay.com/itm/BRAND-NEW-Ti...-/320627171474

You do not need to buy the TiVo Wireless N adapter, It would be cheaper to buy a 4-port wireless N bridge, or an N gaming Adapter, or an N router that will act as a wireless bridge. But wired is always best, especially if you ever plan on more than one TiVo and want to stream content between them.

Cox Copy Protects ever channel except locals, so you can't transfer any shows other than locals to a PC. (Orange County and New England are exceptions, I think)

I myself, am still considering an Elite purchase, but waiting to see if Cox delivers on the VOD and waiting for less random rebooting complaints, perhaps with the next software update.

Would also like to here from kingpcgeek, to see how everything is going, any problems with the TA rebooting or the TiVo Elite? Cox still hasn't updated the TA firmware to the latest version F.1501 which is supposed to help with stability when using 4 Tuners.
kingpcgeek's Avatar kingpcgeek 07:20 AM 02-17-2012
I bought my Elite on Amazon (Yogi Computers). Paid $445 + free Prime shipping, but as everything electronic on Amazon prices change daily. I see today it is up to $496.

No problem buying extended warranty from TiVo, in fact they pushed it. I am going month to month right now. Maybe later this year I'll plunge for the lifetime.

As far as Cox the CableCard activation was a breeze, even though it did do about a 20 minute download to update the firmware on the card which should be considered a good thing. Tuning adapter also required an activation call, but that was done in a couple of minutes.

As far as performance, zero reboots of the TiVo so far. One time when I came home after work I got the message that no TA was found. I turned the TA on and off and it was back. Unfortunately there were two recordings at that time and they stopped when I turned it off. Note to self, no reset of TA when recordings are happening.

There have been several times that all 4 tuners were active and I haven't seen one hiccup during that time.

Speed wise, even with the latest update to TiVo the HD menus are still slower then a Cox DVR. And you get audio drop outs when you are doing things on TiVo menus that you don't get with the Cox DVR. Some steps are shorter with Cox as well, such as playing your recordings.

Season pass, new episodes only doesn't seem to work right all of the time. It sometimes records an old episode, like this past Saturday it recorded Alcatraz.

Would I go back to Cox? Nope, I returned the DVR on Tuesday. The 4 tuners has me hooked. I can set all of my season passes without thinking about another show that might be on at the same time. I never used OnDemand, but if I really needed to there is a TV with a Cox HD box sitting in my living room, so I really have the best of both worlds.

The iPad app is the best way to set recordings. Last night I was in bed with the iPad going through the HBO/Showtime/Startz programming for the next 2 weeks setting all of the movies I want recorded. I setup most of my season passes waiting in a doctors office using my iPhone. My one gripe about season passes is that the default is to record new and old episodes. Every time you create one you have to edit it to say new episodes only. Why can't I set my own default?

Now if Cox could get us our Plus channels things would be all good. I did verify with another tech this past week that all of the plus channels are added to my account. But alas they are still not working.
domino92024's Avatar domino92024 01:35 PM 02-17-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by hdcrack View Post

I'll repost & if there is some issue, hopefully, someone will tell me.

I think the problem with your post is that it has nothing to do with this sub-forum's title: "SA/Cisco 8*** series DVR's Tips and tricks using Cox's Passport Echo software." It looks like a review of a TiVo to me.
Bryan_CoxPHX's Avatar Bryan_CoxPHX 06:35 PM 02-17-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by kingpcgeek View Post

I am going month to month right now. Maybe later this year I'll plunge for the lifetime.

You only have the first 30 days to change your mind on monthly vs lifetime. After 30 days you may be stuck with monthly for at least the first year. After the first 30 days it is at the sole discretion of TiVo. I would call TiVo to find out for sure.

(ii) When purchasing a TiVo Premiere Elite box from TiVo directly or from a third party retailer at $499.99, you may only subscribe to the TiVo service on a monthly basis for $19.99 a month with no commitment or you may purchase a Product Lifetime Subscription (defined below) for a onetime fee of $499.99.
kingpcgeek's Avatar kingpcgeek 08:19 PM 02-17-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan_CoxPHX View Post

You only have the first 30 days to change your mind on monthly vs lifetime.

Thanks for that info. I guess its lifetime for me now.
TedBPhx's Avatar TedBPhx 01:38 PM 02-27-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by bexx5 View Post

I also have an 8240HDC and live in Phoenix. Cox says I can't hook up an eSATA drive to it. Can you send me the Cox email address you sent your request to? Or do I have to be contacted by Cox first?

If I can't get the 8240HDC to work, is it worth asking Cox to get another model? If so, which one should I ask for?

Thank you!

UPDATE: I read further back and found the email address (AZ.CoxArizonaHelp@cox.com) originally posted by Bryan_CoxPHX. Hopefully I will receive a reply. Assuming this works, my next question is, which eSATA drive should I buy?

I live in Phoenix and have COX. Traded my SA8240 for a new Cisco 8642. Went down to the retail COX store at 7th and Bell and swapped 'em. No charge. Easy to hook up myself. Had to call for activation despite what the store clerk said. Supposedly, according to COX clerk, the drive is twice as large.

The DVR is more responsive to rew and play controls.

Was having stutter and pixelation issues when playing the buffer this morning but a reset, pulled the power cord, fixed it.
cejack4's Avatar cejack4 09:01 PM 06-16-2012
So here I am. Trying to get the same update on the same DVR box 8240HDC that's over at my dad's house.

The telephone support says there is no firmware update. (Wrong.... see my previous posts with pictures.)

It would be nice to have the regular phone support people notified of this stuff. I guess there must be some reason. Oh well...

Anybody in Las Vegas had to request the firmware update recently willing to tell me where to go to get this done quickly for my dad's DVR unit?

Thanks in advance.

Of course I posted on the Cox Las Vegas wall. Will see what happens and post back.
cejack4's Avatar cejack4 01:24 PM 06-20-2012
Just in case anybody was wondering how my setup looks with a Western Digital Caviar Black on Cox Las Vegas' system with a Scientific Atlanta 8240 HDC I have posted the following pictures:

450
450

The problem I am having with setting my pop's unit up is that he has the following version:

3.1.093

I'm wondering what the protocol is for this. He purchased a WD Caviar Black drive as follows:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136828

Tried various power on and power off methods and no drive is being recognized or prompted for format on the new firmware Cox flashed to the unit.
cejack4's Avatar cejack4 01:42 PM 06-20-2012
Perhaps this drive isn't compatible. I thought just about any Western Digital Caviar Black was supposed to be compatible. This one is an Enterprise Drive. So maybe not.

I'm checking the list here:

http://baseportal.com/cgi-bin/baseportal.pl?htx=%2Fxnappo%2Fmain

The drive I tried wasn't on that list so perhaps this is the problem.

I presume that this list is just as good for the 8240HDC as it is for the 8300HD.

Perhaps I should get one of these:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136533

Seems like $99.99 after considering the $20 promo code is starting to get pricing on these drives back down to reasonable levels.
Bryan_CoxPHX's Avatar Bryan_CoxPHX 06:43 AM 07-07-2012
RE: 8240HDC (Silver DVR) and Formatting a New External HDD

Not sure when it happened, But I just noticed the "beta" Passport Version the DVR was running has been updated, again. I checked to see if it would prompt for the removal of the Ext HDD, and it does. I have not tested to see if it prompts for a Format of a NEW Ext HDD.
I will check and report back before I return it to Cox. My recent purchase of a 4-Tuner TiVo Elite/XL4 has made the 8240HDC redundant.
I have now tested this latest version and it does indeed prompt for a Format.

Prior beta version:
Passport Vers: 3.1.091
OS Vers: PowerTV 6.20.75.106sp

New Passport version:
Passport Vers: 3.1.124
OS Vers: (did not change, PowerTV 6.20.75.106sp)
I have now tested this latest version and it does indeed prompt for a Format.

AFAIK, there is no firmware for using an Ext HDD on the 8642HDC (Black DVR) running Passport.
jmmesch's Avatar jmmesch 12:52 PM 07-07-2012
How does one check Passport version?
domino92024's Avatar domino92024 01:30 PM 07-07-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmmesch View Post

How does one check Passport version?

In the diagnostic pages section.
jmmesch's Avatar jmmesch 02:25 PM 07-07-2012
I tried getting there, but with this new remote, I can't find that page!
Bryan_CoxPHX's Avatar Bryan_CoxPHX 08:35 PM 07-07-2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmmesch View Post

I tried getting there, but with this new remote, I can't find that page!
The Diagnostic Menu is on a channel, In Phoenix it is channel 1999. Look through the guide and you should find it listed as DIAG,

You can also press Select and Exit (on the Box) simultaneously to access the channel. You may need to deactivate Parental Controls to view the channel, my 4240HDC requires this every time, but not the 8240HDC.
jmmesch's Avatar jmmesch 08:41 PM 07-07-2012
My 8240HDC in Phoenix has Passport Echo 3.1.085!
Bryan_CoxPHX's Avatar Bryan_CoxPHX 08:50 PM 07-07-2012
That version is the initial release that does not support an Ext HDD on the 8240HDC,
http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r25173512-AZ-8240HDC-will-no-longer-Format-a-New-External-HDD

• Version: Passport Echo 3.1.085 - Sep 13 2010
• OS Version: PowerTV 6.20.75.103sp - Jun 2 2010
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