Updated "laundry list". Related items are grouped together. Actually, there are now 69 separate issues.
The order of importance has been changed also;
1a. The Guide needs to include both tuners integrated together as one Guide no matter which input you are in. It's a real problem and inconvenience to have to switch back and forth between tuners to try to schedule programming. Especially if you have overlapping recordings. Also, more than one channels programming needs to be available. This is another real problem. You schedule one program only to find something better on another channel at the same time. If you forget what channel it was, you have to go back and find it, one channel at a time.
1b. The Guide really needs a subscription, Internet based full program data. PSIP Guide data is unreliable, spotty and inconsistent if it is there at all. I know this is well known to them, but I had to have this in the list. What good are three to six hours of listings? Anything less than one full week shouldn't be acceptable in this day and age.
1c.There is no ability for the system to save the existing data for each station in the Guide. After you stop on that channel, continue, then return, the data has to re-loaded every time on every channel.
1d. New glitch: When moving up (lower channel) in the Guide, the view window & data do not always get updated. Both remain from the previous channel. Press the right, then left navigation buttons will cause a refresh. This does not affect moving down in the list (higher channel).
2a. A Full manual recording option, no matter if there is Guide data or not, that is directly accessible from the Record button without going into the menu or Guide. There are too many times where one needs to modify the start and/or stop times either way. As this stands, other than diving into the main menu a number of layers deep, when in the Guide, there is no full manual recording available if there is Guide data of any kind on that channel.
2b. Allow adjustments plus and minus for the start and stop times. Not just one or the other. Programs do start early and end early.
2c. When there is a conflict, you have no idea (unless you can remember) where the conflict is. A conflicting entry should be allowed, but made inactive allowing the user to go to the "Upcoming Recordings" page so the two recordings could be edited and/or made active or inactive. Or, have a pop-up box appear to replace the current box with the following choices; 1. Allow new entry, 2. Allow existing entry, 3. Enter both, but make both inactive.
2d. Remove that “Active” check box in the recording options. One less thing to click through. That is already available in "Upcoming Recordings" if needed.
2e. There is no option to delete a scheduled recording while in the Guide. You have to exit, then wade through the main menu to "Upcoming Recordings" to do this.
2f. Remove the Sat. & Sun. entry. I can't see any purpose for this.
3. No ability to remember where playback was stopped. No ability to 'Mark' where you are or have the system do so when you hit stop or exit by mistake. One hour into a two hour movie, you have to leave, as soon as you press stop and place it in standby, when it comes time to pick up where you left off, guess what? You have to remember were you were and hit the 20 second skip xx number of times or use the fast forward to return to where you left off m(if you can even remember at all).
4a. Add one button access to Media Player Recordings on the remote and in the Quick Menu.
4b. Remove that pop-up open Media Player box when returning from standby. No need for it if that above was available.
4c. Pressing 'Exit' while in Media Player will completely exit you out of MP while watching a recording. Some confirmation is needed to prevent this.
4d. Shorten the manual recording file name in Media Player by removing the seconds and changing the year to two digits.
4e. Change the sort order from alphabetically to by time & date, naming the files in descending YY-MM-DD would work better for recording multiple programs.
4f. Allow renaming recordings while in Media Player for names that are incorrect or for manual entries.
5a. The output of this DVR been confirmed to be very dark with high contrast. You have to set the brightness to around 15 and the contrast around 80. It's way too dark at the default settings. These settings have to be applied separately for Media Player, you have to reactivate them each and every time you use MP since they won't take affect until you press each adjustment that you have changed.
5b. False contouring in blacks, shadows, dark scenes. This has been confirmed. Especially noticeable anywhere there are shadows and/or dark clothing, especially mens suits. Apparently, the default dark, contrasty video settings are to hide this problem. After extended testing, it now appears this Broadcom/ATI chipset is sensitive to lower bitrates. A difference of only 3MB/s will cause noticing the false contouring or not. I have compared the same program from two different sources and the one that had the higher bitrate transmission didn't have the problem. Not all programming is affected. This does not affect recordings played outside of the DVR.
6. The 20 second skip forward and back needs an option to adjust the amount of the time span (there wasn't any until I insisted on this), 20 seconds is not enough. Give the ability to set times in each direction. 15, 30, 60 & 120 seconds would suffice with 15 seconds back and 60 seconds forward as defaults. What is really needed is adjustable skip times from 15 seconds to five minutes. Even though, if you hold the Skip Fwd or Rev down, it will FF or Rev scan until you release it, a fixed amount with out holding the button would make things easier.
7a. Optical audio level is apparently very low. Since the volume control has no effect, it can't be adjusted.
7b. Audio controls have no effect on analog or optical outputs. Only HDMI is affected.
7c. HDMI apparently passes only two channel, variable PCM uncompressed stereo audio. (Which is the only output that can be adjusted.) Apparently, they think everyone justs connects the HDMI cable to their TV.
7d. There is no audio at all when the timeshifting mode is activated. Only when you are watching the delayed portion of the recording is there audio. There is audio on the HDMI output.
8a. An attached external enclosed hard drive does not spin down anymore when the DVR is on, only when in standby wfrom the 2nd last firmware release. Why have it run when the this is only being used as a tuner? (Yes, you can disconnect the drive, but you shouldn't have to.)
8b. After three or more consecutive recordings are finished or recordings over 90 minutes in length (not verified), DVR does not go back into Standby. It appears you can do two and it will go into Standby two minutes after the last timer recording is finished.
9. Nothing preventing you to place the DVR in standby to prevent stopping a recording in progress. You will loose the recording if standby is pressed accidentally. Some confirmation pop up is needed.
10. A timer recording from standby looses the 1st 45 seconds of the program due to the boot time if the recorder was in standby. Booting from standby should start one minute early so the recorder is up and running.
11. There is no clock backup if there is a power outage. User intervention is needed to power up so the DVR can get a clock update.
12. No 1080i for older HDTV's w/o a 1080p input. 480p is also missing which was removed from the early firmware. Some TV's have limited aspect options with some resolutions. Sometimes the 480 choice works out better. This should be restored.
13a. Internal disc format utility; Between the lack of any information right from the start back in April up to the present with the release of the owners manual, this has been a problem. This can only be used with a drive that is already formatted. The owners manual makes no mention of this. It isn't a problem with these pre-packaged combo enclosures & drives, but it makes this useless with any bare drive that doesn't already come formatted to NTFS. If you have to format the drive in a PC, why do it again here? Separate components are always better than some pre-configured package. You have control over each item. Obviously, ePVision doesn't understand this.
13b. Add the ability to format any drive even if it is already formatted,
13c. Add a progress bar to let one know where in the formatting the utility is. Also with a timer to show how long it's been since the process started.
13d. Add the ability to defrag the drive.
14. Remove the pop-up box when powering the DVR up that asks to open Media Player. The missing one button access and/or a Quick access entry to MP would replace that annoying step.
15. GoTo & Guide buttons on the remote need to be swapped. GoTo needs to be renamed to Return as it is on most other devices. GoTo means something entirely different than what it does here and is confusing. The button for GoTo is larger and should be for the Guide. Apparently ePVision realizes this as they pack a separate slip in the box stating the use of the GoTo button. It's also mentioned in the manual a few times.
16. Those small, somewhat identical, circular Menu icons are hard to read and decipher. They all look the same, except the sub menu you are in. Plain text is needed instead cutesy icons. It's confusing to guess at a icon, then read the text above and to the right of that icon. Substitute icons for plain text by moving the text of the sub-category to the far left column replacing the associated icon. The GUI in their Media Switcher was better. It appeared that was easier to navigate.
17. Ability to turn clock display off when in standby, substituting a single 'dash' to indicate standby. Also, disable the red LED in the standby mode since it is confusing to have represent two functions; record & standby.
18a. Change the “Recording List” to “Recording History”. Since it is just a history, not what is actually on the hard drive. It's confusing since one would assume these recording are still available.
18b.Reoccurring recordings only record the first instance. Anything after the 1st recording will not record even though it shows in the "Upcoming Recordings" list. The status column only shows a green check mark for the initial recording of a program that is setup for repetitive recordings (daily, weekly etc.), but disappears afterwards..
21. Re-enable the analog channel noise reduction that was removed. The highest setting did make a difference, thought not as much as it should. This is unlike the digital version that was removed. That made no difference that I ever noticed.
22a. Speed play is useless as it stands due to inter-reaction with the audio sampling when using AC3. Using PCM, the problem is not there. This just happens during FF, Rew is Ok. The sample rate is terrible making the feature worthless. You can't see enough frames to make any sense out of the video.
22b. If a recorded program is paused during playback, the video freezes but the audio continues playing for an additional 5 seconds. This happens when AC3 is in use. When the video stream is resumed by hitting play, there is no audio until the video "catches up" to the point where the audio originally paused (another 5 seconds). The HDMI output behaves normally.
23a. Rename "Picture" to Video in the Main Menu. Picture is a non technical, childish term. Note, the proper term of "Audio" is used instead of "Sound',
23b. Move Dynamic Contrast out of that 'Advanced' menu so all A/V adjustments are in one sub-menu. Then delete "Advanced" since nothing would be under that heading anymore.
23c. Remove Color temperature since it has no noticeable effect.
23d. In the Video (Picture) sub-menu, once you selected a item, you can't scroll up or down to the next item to adjust without returning to the previous screen. This is not a problem using the Quick menu.
24. Change 'Video' to 'Recordings' in Media Player. “Video” is more a term relating to a input or a "video" from someones camcorder. Originally this was labeled "Movie" until it was change per my insistence. Also change "Movie" to "Recording" in the delete confirmation box.
24. Do not allow any channels to get added to the channel list when doing a direct entry. There is a 'Find Channel" function for this. Since the analog function of RF input 2 is disabled, entering any channel number that is empty, will automatically just add that to the channel map. Just another another entry to "skip".
26. Media Player; Use skip fwd & back to move through the pages instead of channel up/down like it is in all other menu functions where this is used. Consistent and less confusing.
27. Disable channel up/down while in Guide. It's too easy to hit and accidentally exit from the Guide.
28. You can not record on tuner one if you are using one of the inputs to the switcher.
29a. Add USB support for a keyboard[/B] to make it easier to use U Tube. Trying to use the on screen keyboard gets old real quick.
29b. Using You Tube, the aspect control has no effect. No full width. If you try to watch a 16x9 clip, it is squeezed down to 4x3.
29c. U Tube can not be used when recording. Accessing U Tube will stop all recordings.
30. Timeshift; Duplicate use of the skip fwd. & back function for slow motion is confusing. Use the separate orange & blue buttons for this and leave the skip & back functions the same.
31. Inconsistent time format. Some are shown as 12 hr., others as 24 hrs. In the US, 12 hrs. is preferred.
32a. There are too many 'Aspect' choices. Normal is the proper setting for probably 95% of the material available without distorting the image just to fill the screen.
32b. For analog & SD channels; Normal, Direct & 4:3 are identical. For HD channels; Direct & Full Screen are identical.
32c. Direct should be 1:1 pixel mapping, it isn't. Normal is.
32d. 4:3 will 'narrow' a HD channel. I can't see any need for this. Since it is the same as normal, remove it.
32e. 'Panoramic' disproportionately stretches the screen, mostly the extreme edges. Remove that.
32f. 'Zoom1' is ok for proportionally expanding a 'postage stamp' image, but 'Zoom2' over stretches the image vertically & horizontally. Remove that.
33. Trying to record and use the USB speed test causes conflicts. Disallow testing while recording.
34. Improve the signal level display to expand the resolution of the reading. Five "bars" are too vague.
35a. Remove the "Lock" feature as it can cause issues if one forgets the pin number.
35b. The 'Lock" feature can be easily overridden just by powering off the DVR and powering back up via the mechanical power switch (not standby).
35c. Doing a factory reset doesn't restore access to the front panel buttons. Since this only records non-premium channels, there shouldn't be a need for it, other than locking out the front panel.
36. Ability to manual edit the channel number (along with the stations call letters) for entries that get a bad channel number from improperly ID'ing the virtual channel number from the actual physical number
37a. File size listed in Media Player isn't always correct. Many recordings will show 1245KB (wherever that number came from).
37b. Ability to edit the file name of the recording, especially when it was a manual recording, preferably within Media Player.
38. Modifying a recording in the "Upcoming Recording" menu, will not show any added record time when you 'pad' the end time of a program to extend the recording longer.
39. The display on the unit will not show a channel change entry until that channel is actually changed like it does on screen. It would be nicer if the entry on the unit would duplicate what is seen on-screen, especially if you have "music" CATV channels available and are using the tuner just to listen without a TV on.
Added entries about reoccurring recording entries, format utility, aspect choices, analog noise reduction, grouped Media Player issues together.
Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way.
The Internet is no place for streaming video.