iView-3500STB Tuner & DVR Owners Thread - Page 113 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #3361 of 5006 Old 08-04-2014, 07:58 AM
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It has STB in the model name which is suggestive of it not being a DVR.

Is it a Digital VCR? Why yes I do believe so but that doesn't make it a DVR. What defines that is features above and beyond recording. Like series link like EPG grid like folder structures and semantic data.

OK if it was 2008 this box would be amazing and it's not the price bringing it down.

I looked at more expensive ATSC DVRs and same thing the dual tuner ones don't have an EPG grid.

A DVR starts with the EPG and here in America EPG is a real issue holding back a lot of these devices. This particular DVR cannot store EPG data which makes it useless as a DVR.

Last edited by duracell80; 08-04-2014 at 08:05 AM.
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post #3362 of 5006 Old 08-04-2014, 09:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duracell80 View Post
It has STB in the model name which is suggestive of it not being a DVR.

Is it a Digital VCR? Why yes I do believe so but that doesn't make it a DVR. What defines that is features above and beyond recording. Like series link like EPG grid like folder structures and semantic data.

OK if it was 2008 this box would be amazing and it's not the price bringing it down.

I looked at more expensive ATSC DVRs and same thing the dual tuner ones don't have an EPG grid.

A DVR starts with the EPG and here in America EPG is a real issue holding back a lot of these devices. This particular DVR cannot store EPG data which makes it useless as a DVR.
Educate yourself on the basic terms you're discussing. This is ridiculous.
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post #3363 of 5006 Old 08-04-2014, 10:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duracell80 View Post
... I looked at more expensive ATSC DVRs and same thing the dual tuner ones don't have an EPG grid.

A DVR starts with the EPG and here in America EPG is a real issue holding back a lot of these devices. This particular DVR cannot store EPG data which makes it useless as a DVR.
As far as I can tell, if you want a full function EPG based device, you have to pay for a guide subscription one way or another. The PSIP data transmitted by each station is generally not adequate for that purpose. Many of us would prefer not to pay for a guide.

The iView provides high quality recording capability very economically. Recording capacity is limited only to the number and sizes of drives you wish to use. Of course it helps to connect the drive(s) to a computer to rename and organize recordings you wish to keep.

There are many improvements I'd like to see on the iView. But it's not likely that it will ever satisfy your definition of a "DVR".
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post #3364 of 5006 Old 08-04-2014, 12:40 PM
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If you are open to using a PC in the mix, you should forget the iView and use HDHomeRun and Windows Media Center. Guide data is free on that platform, and it's a full featured DVR. I use WMC for my main system and iView where a PC is not convenient.
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post #3365 of 5006 Old 08-04-2014, 04:41 PM
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Originally Posted by mdavej View Post
If you are open to using a PC in the mix, you should forget the iView and use HDHomeRun and Windows Media Center. Guide data is free on that platform, and it's a full featured DVR. I use WMC for my main system and iView where a PC is not convenient.
The HDHR's are great aren't they? I have one in the basement and a cat 5 run into the office where the computer lives.

I have some great FFMPEG scripts that transcode the recordings to MP4. But it still remains not on my TV in the lounge. I have to run EPG collector a few times a day to get the gride view in XBMC through Media Portal on an Android TV box connected to the TV.

My issue is all of that isn't a box connected to the TV that non-techies can use.

The iView can get free EPG data. What it cannot do is save this meta data and thus make filenames such as showtitle-channel-date.mts which is my point about it being useless as a DVR.

If the iView saved to EPG data it clearly collects (ie it handwrites its own recording look up table), it can figure out what it has recorded.

Ok if it is a DVR, it's not a very self aware one. It's a dumb recorder like a VCR. In the sense that you record something but it never had any meta data on the tape.

I know what a DVR is and what is ridiculous is that one user who is handwriting a lookup table to match filename to show title.

That data is there the iView can read the EPG why shouldn't we expect it to save the show title in the filename? Thus becoming a usable DVR.

If it did save EPG data, it could create an EPG grid even with one tuner.

I'm talking about usability!!

Have I been over critical? Yes. Is this almost there as a DVR? Yes, the issue I've highlighted is a real concern and makes it less useful as a DVR.

Last edited by duracell80; 08-04-2014 at 04:50 PM.
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post #3366 of 5006 Old 08-04-2014, 05:01 PM
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I should add that I brought this not for myself. I can use it with its quirks, the people I brought it for are going to be utterly confused by the iView.

Anyways I didn't mean to cause offense, it's clearly for the price and lack of functionality one of the best out therw in this price range.

It's a converter box that can record like a VCR. It records based on time and date (like a VCR). The EPG as far as I can see is just a list of those V+ codes we had in the printed TV Guide in the 80's so you didn't have to program the start time and channel.

That simply doesn't make it a DVR.

EPG is critical to a DVR.

What would make it a DVR is if I could set it to record the Price Is Right (on a series link) and it know that the show doesn't air on the weekendso don't record it but on a Monday it is on an hour earlier and on a Tuesday it is on an hour later. (Just an example).

The iView cannot do that because the EPG is divorced from the scheduler.

Last edited by duracell80; 08-04-2014 at 05:13 PM.
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post #3367 of 5006 Old 08-05-2014, 10:57 AM
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I created a Windows Batch file to move recordings into channel folders.

You'll need to take your HDD or flash drive to your computer and move the following file to the HBPVR folder.

www.leejordan.org.uk/hbpvr/move2ch.bat

Create your channel folders based on your recording filenames and in the BAT file edit the line set "list =" with your channel names.

When you run this it will organise the recordings into channel folders to at least shorten the list of recordings.

What is very odd is my iView is creating files with dates 20 years into the future (in the meta data of the file).

So my filenames are like ABC-08022014-1830.mts but the date created shows up in Windows as 26/7/2034 .... anyone else see this?

I can't then rename the files from the date created because it's obviously not recording the date properly. I couldn't figure out how to further structure the files. I would like /ABC/MONDAY/recording-date-time.mts.
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post #3368 of 5006 Old 08-05-2014, 11:40 AM
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Couple quick questions on this tuner:

I cut the cord a couple months on cable. Have a OTA mounted outside and everything was fine. I just realized that I still have cable service for free. It is basic high def but at least I have ESPN, etc.

My bedroom TV is fine as it has an internal tuner but my great room Panasonic plasma is a model that doesn't have a internal tuner. I get the channels but they are not HD.

Will this tuner take incoming cable and run it to through via an HDMI cable to my plasma? I wouldn't really use the DVR stuff at all but for this price I would get it to have the free cable that could be cut any day.

Thanks.
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post #3369 of 5006 Old 08-05-2014, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by StumpZ View Post
Will this tuner take incoming cable and run it to through via an HDMI cable to my plasma?
Yes
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post #3370 of 5006 Old 08-05-2014, 01:24 PM
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Originally Posted by duracell80 View Post
My issue is all of that isn't a box connected to the TV that non-techies can use.
But mine IS a box connected to the TV that non-techies can use. You've just chosen a complex solution. A WMC PC will boot straight to the DVR (on the rare occasions it reboots), work with a normal IR remote, and has all the bells and whistles of a Tivo. Some members of my family have no idea a PC is running the show. For your other TV's, just use extenders. They're dirt simple as well and require no computer skills whatsoever. To the end user, they work just like a cable DVR.

I got an iView for one of my kids, and he finds it far more difficult to use than our WMC system.

I messed around with XBMC and all of that, but that experiment was short lived in my house.
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post #3371 of 5006 Old 08-06-2014, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by StumpZ View Post
Couple quick questions on this tuner:

Will this tuner take incoming cable and run it to through via an HDMI cable to my plasma? I wouldn't really use the DVR stuff at all but for this price I would get it to have the free cable that could be cut any day.

Thanks.
Yes. This is why i got 2. Loved the first one(without the 3-4 switch) got another one, had the switch and it didn't tune cable at all. I called the number in the first(or fifth?) post and and asked for the updated firmware from support. Teresa sent me Versions 1, 2, 2A and 3. 2 is what was on it, i put 1 on and it works fine- i haven't bothered trying 2A or 3 because 1 does what I want- tune digital cable without paying the monthly rental fee.

I also like that you can move the channels in the program to put them back in analog order. When Wowway went digital they were nice enough to scramble all of the analog channels so that you couldn't switch from ESPN on channel 27 to ESPN News on channel 28 by hitting the /\ button, now you have to punch in 69-28 and to get back 63-27 on my QAM flat panel. I'm too old to try and re-learn all of my favorite channel numbers in a four number format!
With the Iview, I put them all in order 2-78 and just cycle around with the channel /\ \/ buttons, just like I did with my first remote controlled TV back in the 70's! The Iview remote was easy to program the TV power and volume controls too, so I only need the one remote.
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post #3372 of 5006 Old 08-07-2014, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by duracell80 View Post
I created a Windows Batch file to move recordings into channel folders.

You'll need to take your HDD or flash drive to your computer and move the following file to the HBPVR folder.

www.leejordan.org.uk/hbpvr/move2ch.bat

Create your channel folders based on your recording filenames and in the BAT file edit the line set "list =" with your channel names.

When you run this it will organise the recordings into channel folders to at least shorten the list of recordings.

What is very odd is my iView is creating files with dates 20 years into the future (in the meta data of the file).

So my filenames are like ABC-08022014-1830.mts but the date created shows up in Windows as 26/7/2034 .... anyone else see this?

I can't then rename the files from the date created because it's obviously not recording the date properly. I couldn't figure out how to further structure the files. I would like /ABC/MONDAY/recording-date-time.mts.
Thanks; that will be useful, especially since the iView remote no longer has page keys.

The Homeworx HW-150 creates files with those weird creation dates too. You have to use the date from the file name, not the file's so-called creation date. But I'm not enough of a .bat expert to figure out how to convert "08022014" into "MONDAY"
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post #3373 of 5006 Old 08-07-2014, 01:52 PM
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Well, because of iview not having it's own clock, appending PSIP info wouldn't be very useful to most people since everyone I know sets their timer to begin several minutes before the program, so it would actually have the wrong program name.
Thought I'd mention how the DTVPal handles this. In theory the iView could do the same, although like you I'm not holding my breath

The DTVPal is also time-based, also gets its time from PSIP, and also lets the user add padding to the start of recordings. The Pal's trick is, if a recording is booked from the EPG, it remembers the start time of the event the recording was booked from, in addition to the true start time (after padding). Then it names the recording according to the PSIP data for the event start time, rather than the recording's actual start time.

That solution isn't without its own problems - for instance, if you edit a recording timer, the Pal "forgets" the event start time, and then you will get a recording with the wrong name - but it works well enough most of the time.
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post #3374 of 5006 Old 08-07-2014, 02:11 PM
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Folks, a quick question about the new 3500STBII boxes with the Ch 3/4 switch:

The old boxes (as well as clones like the Homeworx) controlled this via software. But the software-controlled boxes had 3 options:
  • Ch. 3
  • Ch. 4
  • Loop through (turned the RF modulator completely off and passed the coax input straight through to the coax output)
So, did iView remove the loop-through function?
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post #3375 of 5006 Old 08-07-2014, 07:00 PM
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Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
Thanks; that will be useful, especially since the iView remote no longer has page keys.

The Homeworx HW-150 creates files with those weird creation dates too. You have to use the date from the file name, not the file's so-called creation date. But I'm not enough of a .bat expert to figure out how to convert "08022014" into "MONDAY"
I have a PHP script working that will break down the date on the filenames. In a text file created by a BAT file and output a different BAT file to move files to day based folders.

Was thinking of putting this into a web app that could take a list of recordings and pop out a bat file giving the option to sort into day folders or channel folders.

We're in the process of moving house at the moment so forgive my lack of uploading what I have.
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post #3376 of 5006 Old 08-07-2014, 07:17 PM
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The DTVPal is also time-based, also gets its time from PSIP ... Then it names the recording according to the PSIP data for the event start time, rather than the recording's actual start time.
Was thinking about this. EPG data is present when you book an event. Eg you select "The Smipsons" to record (in effect it's not booking the showname but the time slot on that channel and you say do this again next week please.

So the show title could be added as a "recording label" as an extra field in the booking screen?

It's not a series link but every recording for that time slot on that channel will then be known as The Simpsons and we can then have filenames such as The_Simpsons-WUXP-date-time.mts (and thus show folders too)?

The PSIP data I talk about is present when you book the event (not when you record the event).

To mimick series link you could say have another field in the booking screen for number of weeks or days. Please record this for 10 weeks and cease after that?

I propose this solution because it lines up with the way the iView works at the moment (doesn't save metadata) there must be a file that keeps the booking schedule and that's where I propose sticking the showtitle.

Ideally you'd want it to save the metadata in a text file with the same filename as the recording or even better in the actual MPEG2 file (so that FFMPEG could read it too).

Last edited by duracell80; 08-07-2014 at 08:10 PM.
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post #3377 of 5006 Old 08-07-2014, 08:30 PM
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Heck even if we could edit the "channel name" field to be the show title it would help a whole lot in trying to find what we want to watch (which file is for which show). I guess that couldn't happen because it then wouldn't know what channel to tune in for the recording?

Certainly if iView could give us a "recording label" it would certainly help (ideally the label would be the show selected from the EPG when booking from the EPG).

It reminds me of a manual recording in Windows Media Center when EPG data is missing. You can modify the recording title from channel name to a more descriptive title.

Last edited by duracell80; 08-07-2014 at 08:37 PM.
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post #3378 of 5006 Old 08-08-2014, 11:50 AM
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All of the above sounds feasible in theory. The only potential stumbling block I foresee is the amount of memory available for the list of timers. It's likely stored in flash ROM or perhaps non-volatile RAM, since it survives both a power loss and swapping the HDD; so there may not be much room for additional fields like recording labels (at least, not without reducing the number of timers that could be created).

I suppose all our speculation is mostly academic. I don't expect importers like iView, Mediasonic, etc. to invest any more than a bare minimum in firmware development. At around $40/box, these guys aren't exactly making huge profits to invest back into better products.

Nevertheless, the bottom line is: adding a simple recording label to each timer, defaulting to the show title but editable, and using that label in the filenames of recordings would probably help folks a great deal once they had more than a handful of recordings to hunt through - and it's simple enough that it doesn't seem like too big of a request. All the other stuff - letting the user limit the number of weeks recorded, saving the show title in the recording as metadata, etc. - would just be gravy.
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post #3379 of 5006 Old 08-08-2014, 01:39 PM
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3500stb

Does anybody have the firmware upgrades? Had V2on box tried V13 on post 5 and it did nothing and
when reading the info it said V13 STB3500II, so I downloaded the firmware from Iview web-sight
which is V6. It worked some what but I'd like to try something newer.At V13 I reset the box and also unplugged it then tried scanning for channels and nothing each time.With V6 the info says STB3500 and not STB3500II.
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post #3380 of 5006 Old 08-08-2014, 02:13 PM
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IView made the bad decision to reset their firmware versions to V1 when they changed hardware. This has caused a lot of confusion.

If you got the "new" STB3500II (recognizable by the channel 3/4 switch on the back), then it came with V2 and the newest version is V3. These firmware versions are not on iView's web site yet; you have to contact iView support and get them to email them to you.

All the firmware versions from V6 through V13 were for either the original 3500STB or the "old" STB3500II (which lack the aforementioned channel 3/4 switch). They won't work with the "new" STB3500II.

To be fair, most of the importers of this box made the same bad decision - not just iView. So it was probably driven by the firmware developer.

Personally, I probably would have gone with a 3-digit version for the new hardware. It would've been pretty clear that V101 was for different hardware and not just the next upgrade from V13.

Last edited by JHBrandt; 08-08-2014 at 02:17 PM.
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post #3381 of 5006 Old 08-08-2014, 02:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
Folks, a quick question about the new 3500STBII boxes with the Ch 3/4 switch:

The old boxes (as well as clones like the Homeworx) controlled this via software. But the software-controlled boxes had 3 options:
  • Ch. 3
  • Ch. 4
  • Loop through (turned the RF modulator completely off and passed the coax input straight through to the coax output)
So, did iView remove the loop-through function?
I'd also be interested in knowing the answer, if they've removed the loop though then all the more reason to install a splitter before the iView
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post #3382 of 5006 Old 08-09-2014, 01:37 AM
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Hey guys, just a short question.

I am getting confused the Ch ¾ switch topic. I do not care for the remote, just want simple peace of mind watching cable TV on my HDMI monitor.
Soo, which one to order on Amazon: a) original 3500STB or b) version II ??

EDIT: After some browsing I found the answer. Will change my Amazon order to the original..

PS4, Playstation 3D Display, Bose SoundDock Series III, GoPro Hero 3+, 13'rMBP, iPad 2, iPhone 4s, iView 3500STB (ordered on Amazon)
For sale: DVDO VP50 (FW v1.04)

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post #3383 of 5006 Old 08-09-2014, 02:30 AM
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Note that if your cable TV is encrypted, the answer is neither. The iView can only tune clear QAM and not encrypted channels that require a cable box.
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post #3384 of 5006 Old 08-09-2014, 03:00 AM
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Thanks, I know. We already tested it on a TV with embedded cable tuner. It's not encrypted..

PS4, Playstation 3D Display, Bose SoundDock Series III, GoPro Hero 3+, 13'rMBP, iPad 2, iPhone 4s, iView 3500STB (ordered on Amazon)
For sale: DVDO VP50 (FW v1.04)
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post #3385 of 5006 Old 08-09-2014, 06:32 AM
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In my experience, no matter what you order from Amazon, you'll get the STBII 3/4. I hope you have better luck than I did.
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post #3386 of 5006 Old 08-09-2014, 08:51 AM
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Can someone share the beta firmware for stbii 3/4. I had the luck to receive on wednesday this new box but it is useless as is. I bought it to record tv on usb external drive but there are no channels to tune it.
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post #3387 of 5006 Old 08-09-2014, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
IView made the bad decision to reset their firmware versions to V1 when they changed hardware. This has caused a lot of confusion.

If you got the "new" STB3500II (recognizable by the channel 3/4 switch on the back), then it came with V2 and the newest version is V3. These firmware versions are not on iView's web site yet; you have to contact iView support and get them to email them to you.

All the firmware versions from V6 through V13 were for either the original 3500STB or the "old" STB3500II (which lack the aforementioned channel 3/4 switch). They won't work with the "new" STB3500II.

To be fair, most of the importers of this box made the same bad decision - not just iView. So it was probably driven by the firmware developer.

Personally, I probably would have gone with a 3-digit version for the new hardware. It would've been pretty clear that V101 was for different hardware and not just the next upgrade from V13.
The stb I have is the older 3500STB not the 3500STBII. I downloaded from post #5 , and when stb was upgraded info said FWv13,
3500STBII.I read somewhere about a reset by pushing buttons on the remote. Are you supposed to do that after loading firmware?
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post #3388 of 5006 Old 08-09-2014, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeffsochoa View Post
Can someone share the beta firmware for stbii 3/4. I had the luck to receive on wednesday this new box but it is useless as is. I bought it to record tv on usb external drive but there are no channels to tune it.
I tried to, but the file size was too big-
usb_upgrade_all_flashV3.bin.zip is too large. Max allowed: 98KB
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post #3389 of 5006 Old 08-09-2014, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by New2Me4Sure View Post
I tried to, but the file size was too big-
usb_upgrade_all_flashV3.bin.zip is too large. Max allowed: 98KB
Please send it to me at my email. I already sent you my email to you by private message.
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post #3390 of 5006 Old 08-10-2014, 04:56 PM
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Originally Posted by rene52 View Post
The stb I have is the older 3500STB not the 3500STBII. I downloaded from post #5 , and when stb was upgraded info said FWv13,
3500STBII.
Are you sure? Read previous posts; you may have gotten an STBII even if you ordered an older 3500STB. If it came with the nice remote (with the TV section that can be learned from your TV's remote) then it's an STBII.

V13 should be compatible with both the older 3500STB and the STBII unless you have the ch 3/4 switch. If you have that switch, don't install V13; it won't work. You need V1, V2, or V3 from iView.
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Originally Posted by rene52 View Post
I read somewhere about a reset by pushing buttons on the remote. Are you supposed to do that after loading firmware?
They say you're supposed to although many folks skip that step. To reset, push the "menu" button, move left twice to the System (next to last) tab, then move down three times to "Restore Factory Default" and press OK.
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