Channel Master DVR+ Owners Thread - Page 140 - AVS Forum
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post #4171 of 4611 Old 07-10-2014, 10:18 AM
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Update #1

I'll refrain from reciting the whole story and skip right to the Bottom Line: Monday, somebody from Channelmaster reached out to me. He agreed my situation could've been handled better, and gave me a choice: He'd send me a new remote or a pre-paid return label. During the conversation he reiterated his and CM's feeling that the DVR+ was a great product and that he felt that, had I been able to give it a fair go, I'd probably love it.

Well, when a vendor representative goes out of their way to reach out to me, I feel the effort should be rewarded by giving that vendor a chance to get my business. So I asked him to send me the replacement remote. Although I told him "no hurry," he overnighted it, anyway. I received it yesterday. Unlike the original remote: It works

Preliminary results and impressions...

First off: The tuners. Yep, they're a bit (?) weaker than that in our Samsung TV. There are several weaker, inconsequential, channels it didn't catch, and two that suffer breakup. Of those latter two: Only one is very important, and it's a duplicate (PBS). So, providing the thing passes the first stormy weather test on the other channels: We'll be okay with the tuner performance.

Networking: I ran into a couple issues. At first I thought I'd also gotten a bum WiFi adaptor. Turned out you have to explicitly check the WiFi radio button for it to see the adaptor. Once I did that, it was straight-forward... except... I found I couldn't perform a software update via WiFi. It tried, and failed. Luckily I have an Ethernet bridge right there, so I was able to supply it a wired connection for that. The upgrade went smoothly, after which I switched it back to the WiFi connection.

Other than those items... to be honest: I wanted to dislike the thing. The whole deal with the remote and so forth put me in a bad frame-of-mind regarding it. I wanted to dislike it, but I couldn't. In fact: So far the DVR+ strikes me as a very neat bit of kit!

Even the remote. I haven't tried to program it for the TV or anything, yet. Besides: I have an MX-500 Home Theater Master. But the remote, at least for running the DVR+, seems fine to me. Certainly not the worst I've ever used.

One thing, Channelmaster: I know it's a Channelmaster DVR. The PSIP pop-up when you change channels is nice, and the uptime delay is perfect, but could you maybe reduce the size of your self-advertizing banner, please?

Jim
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Last edited by SEMIJim; 07-10-2014 at 10:22 AM.
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post #4172 of 4611 Old 07-10-2014, 12:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
By any chance, can you tell what the make and model of the 2.5" HDD is? I don't see a sticker.
That really doesn't look like 2.5" to me. It looks like it's a special small form drive.

It's 2014 and you're still paying for television?
 

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post #4173 of 4611 Old 07-10-2014, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by SEMIJim View Post
I found I couldn't perform a software update via WiFi. It tried, and failed. Luckily I have an Ethernet bridge right there, so I was able to supply it a wired connection for that. The upgrade went smoothly, after which I switched it back to the WiFi connection.
Mine was the same thing... though I then tried a 3rd time, and forced myself to be patient, and it finally updated via WIFI. But as I recall the error it was showing seemed to imply that it was a WIFI issue, even though in hindsight I think it actually just needed more time. And when it did the firmware update it took a very long time to do the download. Literally about 10 minutes.
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post #4174 of 4611 Old 07-10-2014, 03:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEMIJim View Post
Networking: I ran into a couple issues. At first I thought I'd also gotten a bum WiFi adaptor. Turned out you have to explicitly check the WiFi radio button for it to see the adaptor. Once I did that, it was straight-forward... except... I found I couldn't perform a software update via WiFi. It tried, and failed. Luckily I have an Ethernet bridge right there, so I was able to supply it a wired connection for that. The upgrade went smoothly, after which I switched it back to the WiFi connection.
What were the firmware releases that you were trying to upload from and to?

Your experience was common until the most recent firmware upgrade, which I read as the fixed the bug not in the most recent firmware but rather in the previous one.

Chuck
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post #4175 of 4611 Old 07-10-2014, 05:01 PM
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What were the firmware releases that you were trying to upload from and to?
I don't know what version it was, but it's 108R (0.5) now.

Jim
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post #4176 of 4611 Old 07-10-2014, 05:53 PM
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could you maybe reduce the size of your self-advertizing banner, please?
I agree. PLEASE!
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post #4177 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 04:32 AM
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could you maybe reduce the size of your self-advertizing banner, please?
I agree. PLEASE!
Have you tried:

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post #4178 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 05:13 AM
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I believe he's talking about on his CM+, not here on AVS
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post #4179 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 06:17 AM
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I believe they are talking about on the CM+, not here on AVS
Whoops, sorry, totally misinterpreted that! I guess the "you" threw me off.
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post #4180 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 07:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
By any chance, can you tell what the make and model of the 2.5" HDD is? I don't see a sticker.
It looks like a Toshiba MQ01ABD100 1TB 5400 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 2.5" Internal Notebook Hard Drive Bare Drive
See the pictures at: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product...82E16822149377

Here's a better image of the DVR+ internal drive: http://www.zatznotfunny.com/2014-07/...carousel-75222
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post #4181 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 08:43 AM
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What do you think about swapping out that HDD for an SSD?
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post #4182 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 08:56 AM
 
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Wireless password issue solved

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Originally Posted by SoonerAJ View Post
Thanks for the information. This didn't fix my problem but it did lead me to the fix. DVR+ didn't like my complex password and it appears to be a bug. There are several patterns and types of passwords that just don't work. It's tough to narrow down exactly but one problem seems to be passwords with 2 special characters.

Here's an example of a couple that I can't get to work

1234567$#
1234567$!

Needless to say for those of us with complex passwords its a frustrating experience to have to work through this without any documentation explaining the DVR+ password requirements. I don't know if this was intentional on their part or if this is just a bug. Either way, I'm working now. But now I have to go back and reset my wifi passwords for all my other devices...

-AJ
I didn't see anyone post a fix for this but I ran into this yesterday and was able to get around it. Arenal04 pointing me in the correct direction by pointing out that the OS is Linux. If you use a dollar sign in your password you need to quote it to get the DVR+ to accept it:

If the password is 1234567$# then input: 1234567\$#
If the password is 1234567$! then input: 1234567\$!
If the password is 1234567\$! then input: 1234567\\\$!

Hope this helps

Last edited by Bill444; 07-11-2014 at 09:07 AM. Reason: more info
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post #4183 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 09:08 AM
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What do you think about swapping out that HDD for an SSD?
Why bother? Rotating media disks are good at large block sequential transfers, and cheap.

Chuck
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post #4184 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 09:16 AM
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Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill444 View Post
I didn't see anyone post a fix for this but I ran into this yesterday and was able to get around it. Arenal04 pointing me in the correct direction by pointing out that the OS is Linux. If you use a dollar sign in your password you need to quote it to get the DVR+ to accept it:

If the password is 1234567$# then input: 1234567\$#
If the password is 1234567$! then input: 1234567\$!
If the password is 1234567\$! then input: 1234567\\\$!

Hope this helps
Your fix makes total sense. As you pointed out, the backslash negates the special meaning of the immediately following character. Good call!
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post #4185 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill444 View Post
I didn't see anyone post a fix for this but I ran into this yesterday and was able to get around it. Arenal04 pointing me in the correct direction by pointing out that the OS is Linux. If you use a dollar sign in your password you need to quote it to get the DVR+ to accept it:

If the password is 1234567$# then input: 1234567\$#
If the password is 1234567$! then input: 1234567\$!
If the password is 1234567\$! then input: 1234567\\\$!

Hope this helps
Bill, very helpful first post! Welcome to the AVS Forum...
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post #4186 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Chuck Tribolet View Post
Why bother?
Noise, heat and power consumption.

Jim
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post #4187 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 09:31 AM
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Quote:
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What do you think about swapping out that HDD for an SSD?
If it's a stock SATA drive, it should be no problem. You should be able to use a tool like CloneZilla to clone the spinning rust drive to the SSD, providing the SSD is the same size as, or bigger than, the spinning rust drive. If the target drive is bigger: I think CloneZilla will, optionally (?), grow the filesystem(s) to take advantage of the greater size. Then you should be able to just plug it in and go.

That being said: 1TB SSDs are very spendy.

Jim
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post #4188 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 10:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEMIJim View Post
Noise, heat and power consumption.

Jim
Noise? I don't hear my spinning drive at all.

Heat? They've been selling this basic unit it Europe with an internal drive and doesn't seem to have been a problem.

Power Consumption? The Western Digital WD10JUCT 1T 2.5" AV drive consumes 1.4 watts when reading and writing, 0.59 watts just spinning, 0.18 watts sleeping. I'll go with the worst case of 1.4 watts. That's 12.3 kWh per year. I pay .36 for each additional kWh. so the drive costs $4.41 per year worst case. Now what's the price difference between spinning and solid state?

Chuck
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post #4189 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 01:23 PM
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And, don't solid state drives eventually lose their ability to record after a certain number of deletes? Aren't they recommended primarily for operating systems and permanent storage?

It's 2014 and you're still paying for television?
 

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post #4190 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 01:24 PM
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SSD not Worth It!

Chuck,


Agree with you. Plus if you have the TV on and you can hear the drive spinning you have a drive issue....it's about to fail. If the TV is off and you hear the drive you have another issue.
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post #4191 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 02:03 PM
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I've been lurking on this forum for a while and finally bit the bullet as many of the original issues seemed to settle down with the latest software release. Here is my review after about 3 weeks of use.


Order/Shipping: Took advantage of the free Father's Day Shipping. Ordered on Sunday and received the box (Iowa) on Friday. Ordered the DVR+ with a 6' HDMI cable. Ordered a WD My Passport 1.5 TB external hard drive (USB powered) for expanded storage from a different vendor.


Setup/Tuners/Network: Very simple wizard and easy to get set up. I first installed without hooking up the hard drive and did an initial scan. My opinion is that the tuners in this unit are very good. They picked up every station I would have expected and a few I did not even know about. Granted, I am comparing this to the CM7400 which had a well below average tuner in my opinion and missed many of the smaller stations. I have a CM-2016 antenna mounted in my attic that is pointed in the general direction of the TV towers about 15 miles away. The antenna feed is split twice before getting to the DVR+. Again, very happy with all the stations this thing hauls in. I did not purchase the WiFi adapter but rather bought an old router much cheaper that I converted into a wireless bridge/repeater that provides wired internet to both the DVR+ and my Blue-ray player. Upon initial scan PSIP data was instantly there but about 2-3 minutes later the network and rovi icons were in place telling me I had the extended guide. Also very happy with this as I lived with PSIP before with the 7400. After about 2 days I was prompted to download version 108R as I believe it came with 106R. Updating seemed to take forever and I almost panicked and started over. Left it and came back later to see it progressing. I can't comment on any noted differences between 106R and 108R.


Hard Drive: The My Passport Ultra 1.5TB USB3.0 Portable Hard Drive (WDBMWV0015BBK-NESN) works with this unit. Plugged it in, it was instantly recognized and formatted. It will power down on its own out of the box after about 30 minutes in stand by mode with no recordings scheduled. I have not had issues yet with the stuttering during playback. Not sure I have had a situation with two recordings and one playback going on yet as it seems like this might put the processor to the test and increase the likelihood of this happening (speculation).


Audio/Video: I utilize the toslink optical audio connection to my older amplifier in order to get the 5.1 surround. Works fine but I needed to get a mini-plug adapter to fit in the DVR+ whereas the amplifier has the other connector that is more squarish. The HDMI is set to deliver 2.0 stereo to my TV when amp not in use. Picture quality via HDMI is excellent.


Remote: This is my biggest disappointment with the DVR+. They made such a great product, but the remote is borderline junk. Upon first use the, DVR+, I experienced the remote lag mentioned in this forum. In some cases nothing happened and in others there was a very slow response. I set it to control my TV and it seemed like the remote would work 50% of the time to control the TV. I might have a defective remote, but I don't understand why it would work some of the time or if I seemed to pressed the button harder. Button placement is also poorly laid out. My remedy was to purchase the Dish 20.1 learning remote for $6 on ebay also mentioned on this forum. I highly recommend this remote to anyone not satisfied with the DVR+ remote. Its learns all the commands from the DVR+ remote very easily. After programming this new remote, the DVR+ response became almost instantaneous with no lags observed.


OK that is my review. When fall rolls around and I/my wife really put this thing to the test we will see if continues to meet our expectations. For now, I'm a very satisfied customer and would recommend it. Thanks to all for the observations and input that I have been able to use to better my experience with this thing along the way.
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post #4192 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 02:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GopherClone View Post
Remote: This is my biggest disappointment with the DVR+. They made such a great product, but the remote is borderline junk. Upon first use the, DVR+, I experienced the remote lag mentioned in this forum. In some cases nothing happened and in others there was a very slow response. I set it to control my TV and it seemed like the remote would work 50% of the time to control the TV. I might have a defective remote, but I don't understand why it would work some of the time or if I seemed to pressed the button harder. Button placement is also poorly laid out. My remedy was to purchase the Dish 20.1 learning remote for $6 on ebay also mentioned on this forum. I highly recommend this remote to anyone not satisfied with the DVR+ remote. Its learns all the commands from the DVR+ remote very easily. After programming this new remote, the DVR+ response became almost instantaneous with no lags observed.
It's good to hear that overall the DVR+ is meeting your expectations. Have you tried the original Channel Master remote since you started using the Dish 20.1 remote? Is there a noticeable delay with it from the time you push a button on the remote until the power indicator lights up indicating the command has been transmitted? It's more likely that any delays in response are happening inside the DVR+ or that the DVR+ isn't receiving the signal properly and the command has to be repeated.
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post #4193 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 03:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dkreichen1968 View Post
And, don't solid state drives eventually lose their ability to record after a certain number of deletes? Aren't they recommended primarily for operating systems and permanent storage?
SSDs have come a long way since the days people were dousing cold water on them

Here's a structured longevity test series that reached 600TB of rewrites w/o failure, plus long power-off data retention tests. After 1 petabyte (15 zeros) of constant rewrites... not single write for data retention purposes... only half the drives are dead! All U.S. scientific research libraries are contained in 2 petabytes!
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post #4194 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 05:16 PM
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Flash memory cells have limited write lifetime. The link you cite states that up front because that's just a fact of physics. The SSD drives don't fail quickly because they are constructed with lots of extra memory cells that are put into play as the initial ones are worn out. They excel as OS drives where they can boot a system like lightning and the OS files are mainly read from and not written to. Using an SSD in a write intensive application is not recommended -- using them for a DVR is just a waste of money.

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post #4195 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 06:50 PM
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The point of the linked test is that SSDs are now durable enough that the limited number of write cycles is no longer a concern. You can write such an obscene amount of data to them before they fail that you'd never be able to reach it during normal use. The only reason SSDs are bad for DVRs at this point is that they are not cost competitive with HDDs in terms of capacity. DVRs need high capacity and don't need high speed, whereas SSDs give high speed but low capacity, the opposite of what you want for DVR storage. That will eventually change as SSDs get cheaper, but that's still a few years away from being reality. The durability concerns related to SSDs have already been addressed, though, so manufacturers are well on track to making HDD technology obsolete across the board.
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post #4196 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 07:17 PM
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Flash memory... [excels] as OS drives where they can boot a system like lightning and the OS files are mainly read from and not written to. Using an SSD in a write intensive application is not recommended --
That is no longer accurate. Recent designs are estimated to have an MTBF that exceeds even Enterprise-class spinning media. I just built a new home server/desktop employing a pair of 240GB Intel SSDs in RAID1. I certainly would never have done such a thing if I hadn't performed my due diligence and educated myself on modern SSD performance.

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using them for a DVR is just a waste of money.
In your opinion

Jim
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post #4197 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 07:23 PM
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I just wanted to jump in and say I've had my DVR+ for about a week now and love it!

I cut the cord a little over a year ago and was doing fine with Roku and Aereo. I wasn't thrilled with Aereo and in most cases I get better reception with my Winegard amped antennas. I'm watching more network tv now with the antennas and DVR+ than I ever did with Aereo.

It was an easy setup, both the box and the remote. I've got a 2T WD hard drive hanging off of it and it recognized it immediately and formatted it. I see some of you have problems with the remote and it's fine for me with the exception of one thing, there is a lag with the fast forward skip. I'm getting the hang of it, but it's still irritating.

One thing I wasn't happy with is that I can't watch it on all my tv's. Then I got to thinking that when I had a dish, I had to have separate boxes to watch the dvr, and with my roku, I have to have one for each tv, so it's not really any different.

I think I may see a slingbox 5000 in my future. ;-)

When I told a friend I made this purchase and that I may be buying a slingbox, he said "Isn't this getting expensive just to cut the cord?" I told him "No. It's not about saving money anymore, now it's an obsession!"
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post #4198 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 07:34 PM
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It a appears the folks in the HTPC section have been doing the math. They are tossing around stuff like recording 4 shows at a time for 24 hours a day would mean a 120GB SSD should fail in 9 years.

As for heat, I have a DVR+ without a hard drive, it is very hot. I would think that adding a HHD would make this even hotter. Possibly, by adding a HHD something would fail much sooner than a DVR+ without a HHD.

Was hoping for someone would say something about a performance improvement. Have seen references to stuttering. Would the SSD resolve this or am I misunderstanding the issue?

Clearly, the biggest issue of using an SSD would be cost.
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post #4199 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 07:50 PM
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DVR+ single channel scan

I can't find documentation of how to do a manual channel scan and can't figure out the interface. I'd like to add a single channel. I enter "05" for the channel but it doesn't scan channel 5 successfully. Has anyone figured out Manual Channel Scan?
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post #4200 of 4611 Old 07-11-2014, 09:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post
SSDs are bad for DVRs at this point is that they are not cost competitive with HDDs in terms of capacity. DVRs need high capacity and don't need high speed, whereas SSDs give high speed but low capacity, the opposite of what you want for DVR storage.
Exactly. Low capacity, high speed, high cost -- none of which are needed for a DVR. Recording video streams uses just a small portion of a HDD's available bandwidth. SSD is expensive overkill.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SEMIJim View Post
In your opinion
If it makes you feel good to spend as much for a 256GB SSD as one would spend for a 3TB HDD to put in a DVR, who am I to argue.

- kelson h

The bitterness of poor quality lasts long after the sweetness of the low price is forgotten . . . life is too short to drink bad wine

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