iView-3500STB Tuner & DVR Owners Thread - Page 151 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #4501 of 4528 Old 01-25-2016, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by mdavej View Post
Well, you can pay a bit more (~$350) for a stable product (Magnavox or Tivo).

I agree SSD on these is a terrible idea. Huge expense compared to HDD and will wear out quickly.
As long as we're naming alternatives, I'd also mention CM's DVR+ ($249 w/o the HDD). Although if you catch one of those $300-with-lifetime specials TiVo runs from time to time, that would arguably be the best deal.

BTW, I assume he was talking about a USB flash drive, not a SATA SSD plus a dock. The appeal of those is you can get small ones cheap (64GB for ~$25), so you can use them sort of like video cassettes in the old days. If that's how he wanted to use them, he'd probably record a few shows and keep them, rather than erasing and re-recording, so wear-out wouldn't be as much of a concern.

Last edited by JHBrandt; 01-25-2016 at 11:37 AM.
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post #4502 of 4528 Old 01-25-2016, 11:38 AM
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As long as we're naming alternatives, I'd also mention CM's DVR+ ($249 w/o the HDD). Although if you catch one of those $300-with-lifetime specials TiVo runs from time to time, that would arguably be the best deal.
Does CM have QAM tuners? I thought it was only OTA.

QAM is the only reason to choose iView over some other brand, as far as I can tell. That's the only reason I chose iView over Homeworx.
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post #4503 of 4528 Old 01-25-2016, 12:14 PM
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Yes, the DVR+ is OTA only. The OP didn't mention the environment, and I assumed OTA. That might have been an incorrect assumption.

For cable, I'd definitely recommend TiVo; it's the only DVR I know of that accepts a CableCARD. Clear QAM is an endangered species in the US.

BTW, the last HomeWorX I bought did come with QAM-enabled firmware. (Nevertheless, I assume Mediasonic still doesn't support QAM. I'm only using it in an OTA environment; the only thing I get via cable is Internet service.)
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post #4504 of 4528 Old 01-25-2016, 11:49 PM
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Much like NTSC eventually went away, isn't QAM, at least unencrypted, also eventually going away? That's what I heard.

In A/V reproduction accuracy, there is no concept of "accounting for taste". As art consumers we don't "pick" the level of bass, or the tint of a scene's sky, any more than we pick the ending of a book. "High fidelity" means "high truthfulness" , faithful to the original artist's work: an unmodified, neutral, accurate copy (or "reproduction") of the original with, ideally, no discernable adulterations: aka "transparency".
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post #4505 of 4528 Old 01-26-2016, 06:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m. zillch View Post
Much like NTSC eventually went away, isn't QAM, at least unencrypted, also eventually going away? That's what I heard.
Yes but unlike NTSC the only reason QAM would go away is because of the greediness of our pay TV providers They make more money renting STBs to everyone who's hooked up to their system than if those people used their own tuners, plain and simple! Oh of course they also make even more money if those said people get full fledged STBs or DVRs and they used PPV or similar pay services, something that a person using a clear QAM tuner would not have access to and therefor never be tempted to use.
As Abba said in their song......money money money.....
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post #4506 of 4528 Old 01-26-2016, 12:12 PM
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http://forums.solidsignal.com/conten...g-away-forever


If anyone has a more recent article, by all means, please post.

In A/V reproduction accuracy, there is no concept of "accounting for taste". As art consumers we don't "pick" the level of bass, or the tint of a scene's sky, any more than we pick the ending of a book. "High fidelity" means "high truthfulness" , faithful to the original artist's work: an unmodified, neutral, accurate copy (or "reproduction") of the original with, ideally, no discernable adulterations: aka "transparency".
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post #4507 of 4528 Old 01-26-2016, 02:39 PM
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That's ancient history. Clear QAM is already long gone most places, definitely every place in that article. The only reason I use it is because my school campus has their own clear QAM distribution system. For encrypted cable, I use cable card devices.
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post #4508 of 4528 Old 01-26-2016, 03:25 PM
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There are a few systems that still offer clear QAM, Verizon FiOS being probably the most important.

I think a big part of the reason cable companies wanted to encrypt everything is sheer laziness: if you don't pay your bill on time, if everything is encrypted they don't have to send someone out to disconnect you. They can disable your service automatically, and turn it back on from a computer screen.

But FiOS can do that anyway, since their fiber system works differently. So they don't have to encrypt everything just to be able to switch you off.
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post #4509 of 4528 Old 01-28-2016, 11:44 AM
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Iview 3500STB QAM256 compatible?

Hi All,

Can anyone confirm the Iview 3500STBII's compatibility with QAM256 modulation? I am working on an integrated system consisting of two large displays conected to multiplexers, in order to display a significant number of video streams on each. I will be connecting this to a closed circuit HD cable feed, running QAM256 modulation. I am looking at using the aforementioned tuner to demodulate the signal, feeding each via HDMI into the respective multiplexers. Since I will be purchasing a lot of these (say 15+) for this system, I need to confirm that they will work. All the information I can find says "clear QAM compatible" but does not specify if it is QAM16, QAM64, or the required QAM256.

Thanks in advance!
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post #4510 of 4528 Old 01-28-2016, 11:46 AM
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I should also mention that the signal will be unencrypted.
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post #4511 of 4528 Old 01-29-2016, 03:46 PM
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@j-vaughn;, I am not sure. My best guess is that it probably works all the way up to QAM256, because most folks who have tried it with cable have been able to find at least something, and I assume cable systems generally use the same type of modulation on all their channels, with QAM256 being quite common. But the only way to know for sure would be to buy one and try it.

That said, the iView has a pretty spotty reputation with cable. The problems don't seem to stem from the type of modulation as much as the firmware's inability to properly identify cable channels. It often misses channels that other clear-QAM tuners find without problems.

The exception is firmware version V1, which doesn't even try to map cable channels to their virtual channel numbers. It just shows the physical RF channels and subchannel IDs. It doesn't even skip encrypted channels (even though it won't play them, of course).

V1 firmware can be quite a mess for a typical cable user, but it might be just right for your situation.
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post #4512 of 4528 Old 01-30-2016, 10:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jprc View Post
Btw, Pilule (or anyone else), for the files you already have, you can play the .mts1, .mts2, etc files in VLC without having to rename or convert or anything else. It's a free video player you can download that has more capabilities than the built-in windows player. You can also add all the file parts for each recording to a VLC playlist and it will play it as one continuous show without having to individually play each part. Just play the first file and all of them will be played in order.

And if you're not comfortable with the command line previously mentioned here, you can join the files with any video editor. There are many free ones you can download. And if you are overwhelmed by a full-blown video editor, you can download a simple mts converter that will easily join all of the mts parts into one file.
I tried VLC. It works great but the picture is a little fuzzier than Windows Media Player.

I would like to try some .mts file converter. Any suggestion? One that doesn't come with malware, perhaps? It seems that a lot of them come with unwanted software.

Thanks
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post #4513 of 4528 Old 01-30-2016, 11:46 PM
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What are your target codecs and container?
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post #4514 of 4528 Old 01-31-2016, 07:23 AM
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Try "handbrake" from handbrake dot fr

Its free, its open source and multi-platform and its mature (ie its been around for a long time).
And it contains no malware.
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post #4515 of 4528 Old 01-31-2016, 09:29 AM
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What are your target codecs and container?
I'm not sure what these terms mean???
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post #4516 of 4528 Old 02-04-2016, 01:22 PM
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I'm looking to cut the cord and get a digital antenna instead. I found the iview at Walmart for $35 and am wondering if it will suit my needs. I'm wondering if this device is compatible with a Series 2 Tivo. I'd like my Tivo to be able to change the channel on my digital converter box (via IR cable/IR blaster/serial cable). Has anyone had success controlling this box from a Tivo with an IR blaster? I also need to know if this box outputs Dolby Digital sound via the digital coaxial output. I want to connect the analog composite outputs to my analog Tivo for SD recording while still being able to watch live HDTV via the component video (my TV has no HDMI) and digital coax audio outputs. If this won't work for me, could anyone please suggest an alternate digital tv converter box that will?
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post #4517 of 4528 Old 02-04-2016, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by theGreatCornholio View Post
I'm looking to cut the cord and get a digital antenna instead. I found the iview at Walmart for $35 and am wondering if it will suit my needs. I'm wondering if this device is compatible with a Series 2 Tivo. I'd like my Tivo to be able to change the channel on my digital converter box (via IR cable/IR blaster/serial cable). Has anyone had success controlling this box from a Tivo with an IR blaster?
Some folks have successfully controlled the iView from an XBox One, but I don't know of anyone who's controlled it from a TiVo. You should probably see if your TiVo lists the iView in its remote control database. I think the Series 2 is older than the iView, but the iView may still have been added via an update from TiVo.
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I also need to know if this box outputs Dolby Digital sound via the digital coaxial output.
Yes, in RAW mode (a menu setting on the iView).
Quote:
Originally Posted by theGreatCornholio View Post
I want to connect the analog composite outputs to my analog Tivo for SD recording while still being able to watch live HDTV via the component video (my TV has no HDMI) and digital coax audio outputs.
All outputs are active whenever the iView is on, so your channel's video will appear simultaneously on both the composite (in SD) and component (in HD) outputs. Similarly the audio will appear on both the L/R stereo and digital coaxial outputs.
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If this won't work for me, could anyone please suggest an alternate digital tv converter box that will?
Just avoid the Channel Master CM-7001. IIRC its composite video output is only available if you set its component output to 480i, so it can't give you a channel in both HD and SD at once.

A used Dish DTVPal or Channel Master CM-7000Pal would probably work, although a 2-tuner DVR is probably overkill for your purposes.
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post #4518 of 4528 Old 02-04-2016, 05:13 PM
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Yes a CM-7000 CECB would no doubt be able to be controlled by your Tivo as it uses some old IR codes, not sure about the newer iView, as JHBrandt said you might need to contact Tivo to see if they list a code for it.
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post #4519 of 4528 Old 02-04-2016, 05:58 PM
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Actually I was referring to the DVR that CM sold under a very similar part number (CM-7000Pal). But yes, CECBs like the CM-7000 (without the "Pal") probably use remote codes that work.

The only problem with CECBs is that by law, the best they could do was S-video (no HD outputs were allowed).
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post #4520 of 4528 Old 02-07-2016, 10:05 PM
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So my friends are over tonight watching the super bowl, and for some reason while we're watching, the 3500stbii just decides to delete the channel we're watching.

Now I can't exactly just "add" the channel number back, since the only way the scan works is through the actual bandwidth (mhz) number from the cable line. So I have to start the auto-scan ALL over again. And then figure out how to find the channel I was looking for.

What a complete piece of garbage. Time to find something new. Any recommendations?
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post #4521 of 4528 Old 02-08-2016, 07:59 AM
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Very frustrating I'm sure, unfortunately since it sounds like your using clear QAM you don't have a lot of reliable alternatives well other than a Tivo and that would require a CC and much more expensive than the lowly iView. You don't think there is any chance that your local cable company is using SDV where they can switch channels but there own boxes are able to follow the channel with no problem? Other than that I don't know what to say as to why your iView up and deleted a channel being watched, other than the overall quirkiness of the iView and clear QAM in general. If you have a clear QAM TV tuner does it ever flake out like that, or is it limited to the iView?
If your not adverse to involving your PC to watch TV you have several options but for reliable standalone boxes that work with QAM your choices are very limited indeed. Maybe someone else will come up with something better....
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post #4522 of 4528 Old 02-08-2016, 08:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by viper98912 View Post
So my friends are over tonight watching the super bowl, and for some reason while we're watching, the 3500stbii just decides to delete the channel we're watching.

Now I can't exactly just "add" the channel number back, since the only way the scan works is through the actual bandwidth (mhz) number from the cable line. So I have to start the auto-scan ALL over again. And then figure out how to find the channel I was looking for.

What a complete piece of garbage. Time to find something new. Any recommendations?
What jjeff said. Modern TVs typically have clear QAM tuners that work better than the iView, but if you're looking for something to record clear QAM, there are few good options besides TiVo and a PC.

Perhaps a used TViX? The bigger problem is, your cable company could decide to encrypt all channels tomorrow and wipe out any investment you make.
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post #4523 of 4528 Old 02-08-2016, 09:26 PM
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I have two other TV's hooked up directly without ever having an issue. They have "normal" channel numbers and never really lose anything. I use the iView because I'm running the output to a projector. I need to figure out what else I can do; I wish there was a quick firmware upgrade or something; I'm pretty sure I have the latest version.
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post #4524 of 4528 Old 02-09-2016, 09:23 AM
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I feel your pain. As I said most TV tuners work fine with clear QAM. I take it your projector lacks a clear QAM tuner though, so you need a box like the iView.

Channel Master sells a tuner called the CM-7001 that tunes clear QAM. I tried it for OTA use and hated it: it was expensive yet seriously lacking in features, so I wound up selling it on eBay. For OTA the iView is a far better box for about 1/3 the cost. But for clear QAM, the CM-7001 might be just the ticket for you.

BTW, iView continues to make their firmware ridiculously confusing. For what's supposed to be a single model (the 3500STBII) there are three different sets of firmware on their web site:

  1. V9 or V13 for older boxes without a channel 3/4 switch
  2. V1, V2, or V3 for boxes with a channel 3/4 switch
  3. Two versions (both labeled "V1" ) for newer boxes without a channel 3/4 switch

Using firmware from the wrong "set" could ruin your iView. Good grief.

The new "V1" firmware releases are significantly larger than the others (6MB vs about 3MB). I don't know why.
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Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
Some folks have successfully controlled the iView from an XBox One, but I don't know of anyone who's controlled it from a TiVo. You should probably see if your TiVo lists the iView in its remote control database. I think the Series 2 is older than the iView, but the iView may still have been added via an update from TiVo.
Yes, in RAW mode (a menu setting on the iView).
All outputs are active whenever the iView is on, so your channel's video will appear simultaneously on both the composite (in SD) and component (in HD) outputs. Similarly the audio will appear on both the L/R stereo and digital coaxial outputs.
Thanks for the info. Tivo doesn't support this device. They have a list of devices that I'm sure is at least 10 years old. They aren't going to do anything for Series 2 owners, and as this is an old device and I have a lifetime subscription (so they can't make any more money off of me) and they want to "encourage" me to upgrade (they even recently removed the internet access apps, which really steams me as I liked to stream reggae on Live365 while cooking). Luckily, I found a web page showing it's possible to hack your Tivo and capture and put in your own IR translation file. I decided to go with the iView and got it today. I'll figure out the Tivo part later. Of course Walmart decided to delay the shipment of my antenna until next Tuesday, so I don't have a DD source to test yet. Interestingly, my box has three digital audio settings, including two RAW settings: PCM, RAW HDMI ON, and RAW HDMI OFF. I haven't the slightest idea what the difference is between the last two is.
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post #4526 of 4528 Old 02-10-2016, 01:20 PM
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I'm guessing TiVo intended the IR blaster feature to be used with things like satellite receivers, AT&T U-Verse, and the like, where the TiVo's own tuners couldn't be used. Let us know if you're able to hack it to control the iView.

PCM is supposed to decode the DD audio, down-mix 5.1 to stereo if necessary, and send the decoded stereo sound to both the coaxial and HDMI ports.

RAW HDMI ON is supposed to send the raw DD audio to both the coaxial and HDMI ports.

RAW HDMI OFF is a hybrid; it's supposed to send the raw DD audio to the coaxial port and the decoded stereo sound to the HDMI port. This is because some older TVs don't support DD audio, so they need the decoded audio to play anything; but you can still send raw DD audio to an AVR via the coaxial port, and get DD 5.1 surround sound from your AVR if the channel you're watching has it.

If your output is getting raw DD audio, the iView's volume control won't work, unless you lower it all the way to zero (or press the iView's Mute button). Any other volume level from 1-32 is about equal to a volume setting of 24 in PCM mode (at least it was on the TV I tried it with).
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Originally Posted by JHBrandt View Post
I feel your pain. As I said most TV tuners work fine with clear QAM. I take it your projector lacks a clear QAM tuner though, so you need a box like the iView.

Channel Master sells a tuner called the CM-7001 that tunes clear QAM. I tried it for OTA use and hated it: it was expensive yet seriously lacking in features, so I wound up selling it on eBay. For OTA the iView is a far better box for about 1/3 the cost. But for clear QAM, the CM-7001 might be just the ticket for you.
Hi JH,

What would you say you hated about the CM? Did you ever have any problems with it?

For anyone, has anyone tried the CM on clearQAM? As much as I don't want to spend the money for another more expensive TV box, it may be worth it just because of the iview hassle.
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The CM-7001? Well, it did tune digital OTA stations and had component & HDMI outputs. But IIRC that was about it for the plus side.

On the minus side? Well, let's see:

  • No way to delete or hide unwanted channels. If it picked it up during a scan, it was in your channel list - period.
  • No "favorite channel" list, so you couldn't mitigate the above problem by only surfing favorite channels.
    (By the way, the CM-7000 CECB had both of the above features, so I rather expected them in a product labeled the CM-7001.)
  • No way to manually scan individual channels, so you couldn't even get around the above problem by simply not scanning unwanted channels in the first place.
    Basically, the box forced me to surf through a thicket of unwanted infomercial and Spanish religious channels, rendering the "channel up" and "channel down" buttons on the remote useless.
  • It did have something it called an "EPG:" current and upcoming program only. (The CM-7000 CECB showed the next 12 hours of programming.)
  • The final straw was that if you set the HD outputs to any resolution above 480i, the SD (composite and RF) outputs were effectively disabled by replacing the channel's video with a cryptic message! So if you're using the SD outputs and accidentally hit the button to change the resolution, you lose your picture and have no idea how to get it back! Not a huge deal, but after the above, I was about ready to throw the ^&#$ thing through the TV!
    (You'll note that, despite its own issues, the iView has none of the above drawbacks.)
  • And all that for the low low price of $140, enough for three iViews with $$ to spare. (Although to be fair, I did get 15% off so I "only" paid $119.)

In short, it's an extremely basic, no-frills (and I mean no frills) tuner, which would be fine for $25. Shockingly, when I sold it on eBay it went for about $70

However, it was supposed to tune clear QAM, and despite its drawbacks, I doubt it'd give you the headaches the iView does with clear QAM. Just try to pick one up used on eBay rather than shelling out for a new one from CM.
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