Channel Master DVR+ Owners Thread - Page 162 - AVS Forum
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post #4831 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Warner2Bruce View Post
Can you add a splitter to the DVR+ that allows you to record two programs and watch another at the same time? If so, can anyone recommend something?
Do you mean a coax splitter, so you can feed the antenna signal to the DVR+ and TV at the same time? Of course. I'm doing it.

But be advised: You don't get something for nothing. This will cut signal strength by 50% to each device. That may or may not be a problem, depending upon a variety of factors.

As to recommending one...? Well, as long as it's not gold-coloured and sold at Radio Shack...

Amazon has a bunch of them. Pick one, I guess. I don't recall where I got the one I'm using.

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post #4832 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 02:37 PM
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Originally Posted by SEMIJim View Post
It's not boasting. It's just stating fact. How is one to judge the veracity of somebody's assertions absent some clue as to their knowledge, expertise, experience, etc.? Accept what they say at face value? Flip a coin?
Generally, by the track record of their posts over time. Otherwise, how is one to judge the veracity of somebody's assertions of their knowledge, expertise, experience, etc.?

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post #4833 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by qz3fwd View Post
That is the stupidest statement I have heard in a long time. Anyone can plug a coax cable into the wall then the other end into a router type device o he DVR itself. They must be delusional.
It may not be so dumb in all cases. My mast antenna is amplified and then goes through powered splitters (distribution amps) to run the signal to multiple rooms about the house without splitting loss. These distribution amps are not bidirectional so there are not two coax outlets in the house that have a clear bidirectional signal path between them. Moca would be impossible in my setup.

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post #4834 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 02:52 PM
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I stand corrected.
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post #4835 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 03:17 PM
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Has anyone had trouble getting the DVR to recognize an external hard drive? I am using the updated release of the firmware on a new unit. When I am on the DVR setup menu the selection for "connect external drive" is grayed out.

WD My Book Office 500GB: WD5000H1B-00

It connects to my PC without any issues or errors. I've deleted all of the files off the drive. Do I need to format it or set it up in any special way?

I could also try a WD 15000H1C8-00 but I'd have to clean it off first.
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post #4836 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 05:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
P.Smith refers to the DVR+ ability to record two programs while watching a previously recorded program from the HDD. I assume you mean to record two programs from the DVR+ two tuners while watching a third program live from the HDTV's tuner.

No problems adding a passive splitter as long as your antenna signal is strong enough to handle being split in two and still providing adequate signal strength for reception. If not, invest in a powered splitter so there is no signal loss.

Channel Master sells nice powered splitters (also called distribution amps). I use one at my main media viewing area so I can split the antenna to the HDTV, TiVo, AVR and Silicon Dust HDHR network tuner.
Yes I was referring to recording two programs while watching a third live. Right now, I am exploring different options for my setup. I have one DVR+, a base Roamio, and just picked up two mini's with the lifetime included for under $85 on each one. A Moca setup failed with the Mini's so the only option left I use them is an ethernet connection which I am not sure if anything else other than adding ethernet jacks where I want to use them. is it that simple? I don't want to get this thread off track so Kelson if you know would you mind pm'ing me. I am really weighing that option vs. adding a couple more DVR+'s (that is also why I inquired with CM regarding a whole home solution.
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post #4837 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
It may not be so dumb in all cases. My mast antenna is amplified and then goes through powered splitters (distribution amps) to run the signal to multiple rooms about the house without splitting loss. These distribution amps are not bidirectional so there are not two coax outlets in the house that have a clear bidirectional signal path between them. Moca would be impossible in my setup.
Yes, your setup sounds similar to mine.
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post #4838 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 05:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEMIJim View Post
Do you mean a coax splitter, so you can feed the antenna signal to the DVR+ and TV at the same time? Of course. I'm doing it.

But be advised: You don't get something for nothing. This will cut signal strength by 50% to each device. That may or may not be a problem, depending upon a variety of factors.

As to recommending one...? Well, as long as it's not gold-coloured and sold at Radio Shack...

Amazon has a bunch of them. Pick one, I guess. I don't recall where I got the one I'm using.

Jim
Yes that is what I was referring to. Have you tried the powered distribution amp? My Fox signal is weaker so I wonder if I would need one and make much of a difference so close to the DVR...
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post #4839 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Warner2Bruce View Post
Yes that is what I was referring to. Have you tried the powered distribution amp?
Distribution amp: No. I did try mast-mounted, low-rise preamp. It was a disaster. Too much signal. Made everything worse. Answered a question for me, tho: Was it lack of signal or too many signals (multipath)? The preamp making it worse pretty much confirmed it was the latter.
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post #4840 of 4856 Old 09-21-2014, 08:31 PM
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Originally Posted by johnsonrc5 View Post
Has anyone had trouble getting the DVR to recognize an external hard drive? I am using the updated release of the firmware on a new unit. When I am on the DVR setup menu the selection for "connect external drive" is grayed out.

WD My Book Office 500GB: WD5000H1B-00

It connects to my PC without any issues or errors. I've deleted all of the files off the drive. Do I need to format it or set it up in any special way?

I could also try a WD 15000H1C8-00 but I'd have to clean it off first.
when you connect external HDD to DVR, it must reformat (only first time !) it and reboot
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post #4841 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 05:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warner2Bruce View Post
Right now, I am exploring different options for my setup. I have one DVR+, a base Roamio, and just picked up two mini's with the lifetime included for under $85 on each one. A Moca setup failed with the Mini's so the only option left I use them is an ethernet connection which I am not sure if anything else other than adding ethernet jacks where I want to use them. is it that simple?
Yes, all you need is an ethernet connection between the Roamio and Mini's. You will get a lot more information and targeted discussion in the Roamio thread here.

There is also this thread: New Channel Master DVR+ vs. Used Tivos with Lifetime Service

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post #4842 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 09:20 AM
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I have had the DVR+1TB for about five days now and have a few comments and observations.

My comments are coming from the perspective of using it without being connected to the internet. I moved My 1TB DTVpal DVR from the living room to the bedroom and put the DVR+ in the living room. I realize that Channel Master recommends connecting this thing to the internet for a more stable operation. Having recognized this, I am still going to judge it on its ability to work in a PSIP only environment. For me and my needs, the more the DVR+ relies on the internet to be reliable, the more it is in direct competition with TIVO. Reliable operation without being connected is an important feature to me.

I have decided that I am going to use the CM for a month in my living room. It will be asked to do the same job as the DVR it replaced. So there it is, sitting naked and in the wild. Can it win the starting position? Who knows at this point.

I am going to try to not say the "pal" word as much as I can, but since the pal is the DVR that I have been using for the for the last five or six years, that is like trying to spell Mississippi without any s's. I will do my best.


First off, I want to mention the size of this thing. Man, it is small. It is hard for me to believe it has a 1TB drive in it without a fan or two to keep it cool. I like its small, thin, discreet look. Say what you want about the pal, but I think we can agree, it is one ugly mother. So with just the looks and the footprint of the DVR+, it makes me want to like it.

I am also going to try to refrain from commenting on some of the UI operations until after I have used it for a month or so and give myself some time to adapt.

Setting it up and getting it going was easy and so I started setting some stuff up to record using the name based method. I was still getting used to this machine and figuring out any quirks it has but during the first couple of days it seemed to have missed a couple of recordings. It could be that it was operator error and I did something wrong, but it prompted me to look into a few things like firmware updates, signal strength, and manual recording operations.

I upgraded my firmware from 108 to 111 by downloading the file(from Channel Master) to a blank thumbdrive and then transferring the file via USB. I was slightly hesitant because i used the file provided for the DVR+16GB and then forced it on the DVD+1TB recorder. It all went well. I was wondering if the 1TB version DVR+ still used the 16GB memory of the other unit. I would say yes considering the successful firmware upgrade.

Next was the fine tuning of the signal. I hadn't done this in a couple of years and figured it would be a good time to resharpen my signal.

To access the signal strength of the current channel on the DVR+, you have to go pretty deep into the menu. At first I didn't think much about it but after about a dozen times going through this process, I started getting a little agitated. The menu screen that displays the signal strength times out in about three minutes, so you need to refresh it from time to time to keep it up and not have to go through the access process.

Due to the awkwardness of adjusting my antenna with the DVR+, I ended up using my other dvr/tv to adjust my antenna to maximize signal strength on all channels. It translated good to my DVR+, as all the channels have an excellent signal now. It did take 128 button pushes on the remote to prove this on all eight main channels. i haven't decided yet which is easier: checking signal strength with the DVR+ remote or getting up out of my easy chair and checking it on my other dvr/tv in another room.

Between work and life in general, I haven't been able to spend a ton of time with this thing. I was just recording randomly and sporadically, using most of the different recording options available:" Record just this program", "Record all programs with this name", and "Manual" recording.

At about day four(Sunday), I noticed that the DVR+ still missed at least one recording that I had set up. Again, it could of been my mistake. It seemed kind of random and trying to figure out what was going on using my memory and the "Recording History" got kind of messy.

At this point, I decided to do a factory default reset, on both the pal and the DVR+, to clear all clutter and history. I have decided to set all recurring timers on both DVRs to be exactly the same. All DVR+'s recurring timers will be made using the "Record all programs with this name" option and if one fails, I will make that timer a recurring "Manual" recording using either the "Weekly" or "Daily" option. I will note when a "Manual" recording fails.

I am mostly scheduling my pal to be exactly the same as the DVR+ so I can have a duplicate list of the schedule. I have had a couple of "what the heck just happened moments" with my DVR+ and I want to be able to double check my sanity against the schedule of the pal.

I am bound and determined to use this recorder for a month as my main OTA DVR without being internet aided. We'll see what happens. I gots to know.

Sorry about the length. Even though this post may be construed as negative, it shouldn't be. I do like a lot of things about this DVR and hope for the best.

Last edited by SoonerTheBetter; Yesterday at 09:37 AM.
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post #4843 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 10:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoonerTheBetter View Post
I have had the DVR+1TB for about five days now and have a few comments and observations.

My comments are coming from the perspective of using it without being connected to the internet.

Even though this post may be construed as negative, it shouldn't be. I do like a lot of things about this DVR and hope for the best.
I don't think anyone has reported on a long-term evaluation of using the DVR+ completely off the grid. This should be interesting. Fall season starts tonight so plenty of stuff to record that will recur on a weekly basis.

Things to look out for:
  • accuracy and stability of your PSIP-set clock
  • reliability of unattended updating of the PSIP guide
  • reliability of name-based recording using a PSIP guide

Reporting facts is neither positive nor negative.

- 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


Last edited by Kelson; Yesterday at 10:43 AM.
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post #4844 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 10:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
I don't think anyone has reported on a long-term evaluation of using the DVR+ completely off the grid. This should be interesting. Fall season starts tonight so plenty of stuff to record that will recur on a weekly basis.

Things to look out for:
  • accuracy and stability of your PSIP-set clock
  • reliability of unattended updating of the PSIP guide
  • reliability of name-based recording using a PSIP guide

Reporting facts is neither positive nor negative.



I already have a notebook(a real notebook made out of paper) out on the coffee table to take some daily notes about these exact subjects.

Yep, a new season. It's a good thing I have multiple OTA recording devices with HDDs for backup. It is time to dust off my old Phillips/Magnovox units. Not to mention the 250GB pal at my office/shop. I also have a WD My Passport Ultra 1TB HDD and an iView 3500STBII, arriving in couple of days, to throw into the mix. Fun times.

Last edited by SoonerTheBetter; Yesterday at 11:02 AM.
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post #4845 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 12:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoonerTheBetter View Post
I already have a notebook(a real notebook made out of paper) out on the coffee table to take some daily notes about these exact subjects.
Great.
What is p-a-p-e-r?
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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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post #4846 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 01:15 PM
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Has anyone else seen this: After upgrading to the 111R version of FW, I must adjust the volume on the home theater sound system (attached via optical cable) to at least 50% higher than when running the 108R version. I did a cold reboot, which improved an issue of out of sync video/audio, but it didn't change the need for added boost to my audio system. I am hearing impaired, but now I'm nearly reaching the top end of the volume on the sound system just to be able to hear the TV shows.
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post #4847 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 01:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TsarQuest View Post
Has anyone else seen this: After upgrading to the 111R version of FW, I must adjust the volume on the home theater sound system (attached via optical cable) to at least 50% higher than when running the 108R version. I did a cold reboot, which improved an issue of out of sync video/audio, but it didn't change the need for added boost to my audio system. I am hearing impaired, but now I'm nearly reaching the top end of the volume on the sound system just to be able to hear the TV shows.

I updated my firmware yesterday and it does seem like the volume was lower but I didn't watch much after updating. I will check tonight.

One thing I did notice though was after the update and resetting the DVR+ to the default settings, I couldn't enter my zip code when going through the set up process. I left it incorrect. I didn't have this problem when I originally went through setup with 108 firmware.
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post #4848 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 02:59 PM
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Does the DVR+ have an option to enable Dynamic Range Compression (DRC)? It's sometimes called "night time" mode or something similar. It's possible that the decreased volume is due to changes in such a setting, as DRC often tries to boost the volume of quiet parts to match the volume of loud parts, so as to make the entire program equally loud. This can cause audio distortion and clipping during playback, though, so it's possible that CM is trying to avoid that by reducing the output volume.
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post #4849 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 04:32 PM
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Originally Posted by P Smith View Post
when you connect external HDD to DVR, it must reformat (only first time !) it and reboot
Yes - I understand that - but I don't get a pop-up asking about reformatting. Also on the DVR setup screen there is no option to connect to an external hard drive. Any secrets to get the pop-up on a western digital drive?

Thanks!
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post #4850 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 05:41 PM
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I upgraded to 111R this weekend.


Good:
  • KTVU now gets Rovi information for us folks in the SF Bay area!
  • I like that you can swap external drives without rebooting. (Not sure about the hard drive spinning all the time but at least mine isn’t getting very hot.)
Bad:
  • When booting my WIFI never connects to the Internet. It says it’s connected to the router but not the internet. If I click on connect it connects fine. (Maybe I’m not waiting long enough).
  • I can no longer use the “.” key in the Rovi guide! If I want to select channel 7.1 it only shows 71. The “.” key works fine when changing the channel. Anyone else experience this? If this is only me I’ll try a factory reset.
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post #4851 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 05:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoonerTheBetter View Post

At about day four(Sunday), I noticed that the DVR+ still missed at least one recording that I had set up. Again, it could of been my mistake. It seemed kind of random and trying to figure out what was going on using my memory and the "Recording History" got kind of messy.
My experience with recording from PSIP information is hit and miss. I have missed some recordings. Sometimes I can see the show in the guide but it doesn’t show that it will be recorded. If I “update” the recording timer it picks it up. For a while my PSIP data stopped updating andI had to reboot.

My Rovi and manual recordings have been rock solid. Never missed one.
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post #4852 of 4856 Old Yesterday, 08:22 PM
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Originally Posted by MattFromPhilly View Post
When it was done I selected the show to delete it. When it refreshed, that left only a single show so the folder went away. But it came back showing me a different folder.
I had the same thing happen. I deleted a show from a folder and lo and behold I suddenly found myself in a completely unrelated folder. It only happened the one time. This was shortly after updating to 111.
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post #4853 of 4856 Old Today, 03:35 AM
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Forcing stereo audio

While researching this product I came across a .pdf file of its user manual that says if audio is sent to a surround sound capable device then it was impossible to force stereo audio output. Could any owner confirm this please? I know it's unusual but I absolutely need it to pass stereo pcm over hdmi.

Thanks!
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post #4854 of 4856 Old Today, 07:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsdevops View Post
My experience with recording from PSIP information is hit and miss. I have missed some recordings. Sometimes I can see the show in the guide but it doesn’t show that it will be recorded. If I “update” the recording timer it picks it up. For a while my PSIP data stopped updating andI had to reboot.

My Rovi and manual recordings have been rock solid. Never missed one.
Last night, I tracked my problem down to a specific channel. Channel 6(ABC) and its two subchannels will not accept a a name based recurring timer using the "Record all programs with this name" option. I will explore my manual options tonight. All other channels work and record properly.

When I do try to record ABC with the "Record all programs with this name" option , it does exactly what you are saying. It doesn't flag the program name in the guide grid with a red record marker, and it doesn't record the show.

Last edited by SoonerTheBetter; Today at 08:01 AM.
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post #4855 of 4856 Old Today, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TsarQuest View Post
Has anyone else seen this: After upgrading to the 111R version of FW, I must adjust the volume on the home theater sound system (attached via optical cable) to at least 50% higher than when running the 108R version. I did a cold reboot, which improved an issue of out of sync video/audio, but it didn't change the need for added boost to my audio system. I am hearing impaired, but now I'm nearly reaching the top end of the volume on the sound system just to be able to hear the TV shows.
Yes, I have to turn my volume up quite a bit more than usual after the 111R upgrade on both my TV and/or surround system. I can't remember if it was that way before the firmware was updated but I don't think it was. I have only had the unit for a few days.
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post #4856 of 4856 Old Today, 11:02 AM
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I got this straight from the pdf owners manual concerning audio.


Setting your digital audio options

Many programs and events, especially those broadcast with high-definition video, also feature
multiple audio channels to enhance the enjoyment through your home theater. The following options
on your DVR+ can be used with other compatible equipment:

• HDMI can be set to Stereo only if you are not connecting the HDMI output of your DVR+ to
a device capable of multi-channel surround sound. The default setting for this output is Auto
Stereo/Surround, which will output the best audio option present in the broadcast.
• Optical Digital Audio can be set to Stereo only if you are not connecting the OPTICAL output of
your DVR+ to a device capable of surround sound. The default setting for this output is Multichannel,
which is supported by most equipment which will accept optical digital audio input(s).
• Midnight Mode helps you keep from disturbing others in your home by compressing the
dynamic range (that is, how big a difference there is between the loudest and quietest sounds)
of the digital audio output signal. The default setting for this mode is On.
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