Homeworx HW-150PVR, Support and Discussion - Page 65 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1921 of 2229 Old 02-10-2016, 02:45 PM
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OMG

I swear I checked this and it worked. I used component video cables, which allow HD but are analog, but that shouldn't matter; the HW inserts the captions directly into the image, which is how digital tuners normally handle closed captions. They aren't passed to the TV for decoding as was done in the NTSC days.

There was a quirk: it worked differently live than on recordings. On live viewing the CC button loops through the various possible CC streams (CC1, CC2, CC3, etc.), while on playback of recordings it was a simple on/off toggle. I don't know how it chooses the CC stream on recordings; it probably just picks CC1.

On firmware versions that don't support this feature, pressing CC during playback of recordings just displays "Invalid," but on mine it toggles between "CC On" and "CC Off."
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post #1922 of 2229 Old 02-10-2016, 05:23 PM
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Nope. While recording (TimeShift or watching a recording in progress) it cycles through CC1, 2,... but nothing appears.
Playing previously recorded shows 'Invalid'.

I tried a composite cable (might try component later) and even the Line 21 CC didn't show up. I can't understand how they could even be stripping that.

If yours works, I assume it chooses the CC# selected in the menu. Are you saying you're getting it via HDMI or component.

And what version firmware did you say you had that works? I'd like to toss that back at the rep in an email.

I also asked about the Dolby on playback and he said he'd talk to the techs to look into it.

Last edited by DoctorM; 02-11-2016 at 12:08 AM.
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post #1923 of 2229 Old 02-11-2016, 08:53 AM
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Nope. While recording (TimeShift or watching a recording in progress) it cycles through CC1, 2,... but nothing appears.
Playing previously recorded shows 'Invalid'.
Sounds like they changed it back. In fact they made it worse; it should at least show up while recording. Not sure about time-shifting since you're basically playing back a portion of the recording you made earlier, but IIRC that worked too. (My HW-150 with the oldest FW is at my in-laws' home at the moment, so I can't check it.)

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If yours works, I assume it chooses the CC# selected in the menu. Are you saying you're getting it via HDMI or component.
Component. I'll have to move it to another room to try HDMI.

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And what version firmware did you say you had that works? I'd like to toss that back at the rep in an email.
V2.0, dated 27 Dec 2014.

Tonight I'll try to take a few photos.
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post #1924 of 2229 Old 02-11-2016, 11:01 AM
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Thanks. I appreciate it. What's weird is neither component nor composite deliver captions. Examining the recordings on my PC it LOOKS like Line 21 CC are being stripped. I wasn't aware that was possible without re-encoding.

I decided to give the Homeworx box a try because of the caption fix, but with that gone I'm going to return it and play wait-and-see.
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post #1925 of 2229 Old 02-11-2016, 03:59 PM
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It should be possible to strip the captions without transcoding, but I can't believe the Homeworx would do that, as it would be a lot more trouble to do that than to leave the captions as they are and just ignore them.
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post #1926 of 2229 Old 02-11-2016, 04:22 PM
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Took a recording, demuxed the video from it and ran it through CCExtractor. There are indeed Line 21 subs present in the recording.

That just means that Homeworx went out of their way to alter the analog video output to keep EIA-608 captions from showing up.
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post #1927 of 2229 Old 02-11-2016, 06:10 PM
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NTSC subtitles aren't required anymore now that digital options exist, and I guess this confirms that the Homeworx doesn't output a true NTSC signal, since HDTVs probably don't really care about input devices matching the spec.
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post #1928 of 2229 Old 02-12-2016, 10:40 PM
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Interesting email from support today. They claim to have tested Raw/Raw on HDMI connected to an AV receiver and played back a recorded program. DD 5.1 supposedly engaged. Their firmware was dated April 10, 2015 (as opposed to April 25, 2015). He attached the firmware and asked me to test it.

Sort of wish I kept the box one more day just to see if the DD would work... maybe even the captions.

Pretty messed up that a company has two firmwares called v4.1 but with different build dates.
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post #1929 of 2229 Old 02-13-2016, 08:08 AM
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Hang onto that firmware. If possible, upload it somewhere and post a link. Some of the more adventurous followers may want to try it on their own HW-150s....

... although I suppose there's no way to know for sure which HW-150 boxes it's compatible with in advance.

Mediasonic's firmware versions have always been a complete mess. Most of the "old" boxes came with a 2-digit version number, but it didn't always go in sequence. IIRC it was V3 (very short-lived and quickly replaced by) V10, then V12, V8, V13, and V14. I think there were even a few boxes with V18!

Then they started the new series boxes over again at V1.0. The new boxes seem to have decimal points in their firmware version numbers. Those are the ones most likely to be compatible with the firmware they sent you.
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post #1930 of 2229 Old 02-13-2016, 09:37 AM
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I think I read somewhere that v4.1 is for boxes that formerly had v4. I don't recall it ever being considered correct for any other box, but maybe.

I like how you say the 'more adventurous' considering there seems to be only 3 of us that follow this thread.
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post #1931 of 2229 Old 02-13-2016, 02:16 PM
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Maybe more lurk ... like me.

Captions don't work in playback for me either. Which is partially why I never integrated this impulse buy into my regular "workflow". I routinely turn captions on, so it isn't as useful as I thought it might be.

v/r,
C-F
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post #1932 of 2229 Old 02-13-2016, 04:41 PM
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OK, just to make sure I'm still sane, I just made a short 2-minute recording to double-check. Closed captions do work on mine.

I apologize for these pictures being upside down. I'm left-handed so evidently I turned my cell phone camera the wrong way, and I didn't want to mess around with an image editor just to upload these.

Anyway, the first image shows the firmware version where CC works; the second shows what happens when I press the CC button during a recording (I get "CC*ON" instead of "Invalid") and the third shows an actual caption while playing back the recording.

So apparently the firmware developer managed to get this working once. I'm just totally baffled that:

  • They broke it again
  • Mediasonic denies that it ever worked
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post #1933 of 2229 Old 02-14-2016, 10:06 PM
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Thanks. I'll keep watching this thread. If they ever fix that, I'll be buying again right away.
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post #1934 of 2229 Old 02-14-2016, 10:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Klaatu58 View Post
Just flashed iView firmware V3 onto HW V1 firmware box and iView remote works fine. Guess the demodulators matched. Now when turned on, the box shows "iView" rather than HomeWorx. Man, that was too easy. Didn't even have to reset to factory defaults after the flash or rescan channels. Only had to re-enter time zone and language settings; all others transferred including timer data.

Am using HDMI so can't comment on HW's outputs (especially the analog audio outputs) operating, though.

Also nice about the iView remote is that it uses AA rather than HW remote's AAA batteries.
This sounds like what I need to do, but there are so many versions of iView and HomeWorx that I could still use some further advice, please.

I have iView 3500STBII with CH 3/4 switch (serial no. 1504...) that successfully decodes FioS Local TV channels IF AND ONLY IF it is loaded with what is now called "V3" firmware on the iView support site.

Would like more boxes like this, but when I order now I get new box without CH 3/4 switch, and although iView support is happy to send various firmware, nothing they send works for me for this new box.

So I guess if someone knows where to get an older iView box (I'm told serial number must be less than 1510...) that would be one solution, so please feel free to suggest where to get these...

Another idea is, as per above quote, maybe we can we load the iView "V3" firmware onto some HomeWorx box. But which one?? If I look on Amazon, I see:
-HW-150PVR which looks like no CH 3/4 switch
-HW 180STB (OLD version) which looks like CH 3/4 switch
-HW 180STB (NEW version) which also looks like CH 3/4 switch
-HW 220STB which looks like CH 3/4 switch and ALSO rest of rear panel looks identical to my iView box that works

Any idea as to which (if any) of the above Homeworx box would work if loaded with the iView "V3" firmware?

Also on this thread people speak of getting Homeworx firmware but I don't see that on their site, so if one wanted to recover the Homeworx box original firmware where would one get it?

Thanks!
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post #1935 of 2229 Old 02-14-2016, 10:31 PM
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What the heck is a 220stb? That's news to me. I know the 180stb is actually a step down from the 150pvr, does the 220stb actual have refinements?
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post #1936 of 2229 Old 02-15-2016, 07:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rramjet View Post
Another idea is, as per above quote, maybe we can we load the iView "V3" firmware onto some HomeWorx box. But which one??
Any idea as to which (if any) of the above Homeworx box would work if loaded with the iView "V3" firmware?
I'd be happy to reveal my HW box's version but not sure where to find it.
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post #1937 of 2229 Old 02-15-2016, 07:50 AM
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Also on this thread people speak of getting Homeworx firmware but I don't see that on their site, so if one wanted to recover the Homeworx box original firmware where would one get it?

Thanks!
I believe you have to email Mediasonic. Also, they're unlikely to send you a firmware file just because you ask for it. You probably have to have a problem or complaint with your HW box that new firmware might fix.

BTW, you can't match HW and iView firmware by the channel 3/4 switch. AFAIK no HW-150 has ever had a channel 3/4 switch, but V1-V3 iView firmware works on V1.0 HW boxes anyway. On the iViews, the switch was just a handy external marker for an unrelated internal chip change. Both HW and iView made the same chip change, but only iView added that channel 3/4 switch.
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post #1938 of 2229 Old 02-15-2016, 08:06 AM
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What the heck is a 220stb? That's news to me. I know the 180stb is actually a step down from the 150pvr, does the 220stb actual have refinements?
I hadn't heard of it either. I found nothing at Amazon, but there is a 220STB on Mediasonic's website: http://www.mediasonic.ca/product.php?id=1450334285#tab1. It does have the component video and coaxial digital audio outputs that were removed from the HW-180, and it has a channel 3/4 RF output switch. Also it looks like it may have an iView-like LED display, although it's hard to tell because none of their photos show the box powered on.

The unique thing is a "Karaoke" function. I have no idea how this is supposed to work, but there are two Microphone inputs on the front panel. Other than that, it does look a lot like one of the iViews with the channel 3/4 switch. It does come with one microphone.

The remote resembles the HW-180 remote, so the firmware may also be similar to the HW-180. The HW-180s have their own firmware series. I have no idea if HW-150/iView 3500 firmware is compatible with the HW-180 or HW-220. If it is compatible, I assume loading iView firmware would require an iView remote (and probably disable the Karaoke function).

Edit: I finally found it at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Mediasonic-HOM.../dp/B01ARGXJ90. They have it for $60 (free shipping). Makes sense that it costs a bit more, due to the included microphone. It'll be interesting to follow this box.

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post #1939 of 2229 Old 02-16-2016, 09:16 PM
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I'd be happy to reveal my HW box's version but not sure where to find it.
Don't know about HW, but for iView go to Menu-->System-->Information to find hardware and software versions. If you can find it yes please post.
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post #1940 of 2229 Old 02-16-2016, 09:33 PM
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Don't know about HW, but for iView go to Menu-->System-->Information to find hardware and software versions. If you can find it yes please post.
That doesn't necessary give you the hardware version. The HW version is hard-coded into the software - it's not read from the actual hardware configuration. So what is listed there may or may not give accurate information, depending whether the devs bothered to change the HW version to match the actual hardware configuration (some versions they definitely didn't) and whether it is the original software the box came with.
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post #1941 of 2229 Old 02-16-2016, 09:35 PM
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I believe you have to email Mediasonic. Also, they're unlikely to send you a firmware file just because you ask for it. You probably have to have a problem or complaint with your HW box that new firmware might fix.

BTW, you can't match HW and iView firmware by the channel 3/4 switch. AFAIK no HW-150 has ever had a channel 3/4 switch, but V1-V3 iView firmware works on V1.0 HW boxes anyway. On the iViews, the switch was just a handy external marker for an unrelated internal chip change. Both HW and iView made the same chip change, but only iView added that channel 3/4 switch.
Well my problem would be that their box didn't work for me after loading iView firmware, and I wanted to try to restore it before returning it But I hoped maybe someone else might have saved a copy of the firmware so I could do this without involving Mediasonic directly. Is there a copy saved anywhere?

But it sounds promising--I did understand that the CH 3/4 switch per se is not necessarily the issue from the previous posts. If I understand correctly, iView V3 firmware should work on HW V1.0 boxes? If I just order any "new" HW box, can I assume I will get V1.0?
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post #1942 of 2229 Old 02-16-2016, 09:43 PM
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Well my problem would be that their box didn't work for me after loading iView firmware, and I wanted to try to restore it before returning it But I hoped maybe someone else might have saved a copy of the firmware so I could do this without involving Mediasonic directly. Is there a copy saved anywhere?

But it sounds promising--I did understand that the CH 3/4 switch per se is not necessarily the issue from the previous posts. If I understand correctly, iView V3 firmware should work on HW V1.0 boxes? If I just order any "new" HW box, can I assume I will get V1.0?
No, you can't assume which box you will get. There are several hardware versions and all are still being sold new. Unless it is an open box/used item or you find someone willing to open it and set it up to find the software version on it, most likely the seller will not be able to tell you with accuracy which box it is.
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post #1943 of 2229 Old 02-17-2016, 07:56 AM
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Well my problem would be that their box didn't work for me after loading iView firmware, and I wanted to try to restore it before returning it But I hoped maybe someone else might have saved a copy of the firmware so I could do this without involving Mediasonic directly. Is there a copy saved anywhere?

But it sounds promising--I did understand that the CH 3/4 switch per se is not necessarily the issue from the previous posts. If I understand correctly, iView V3 firmware should work on HW V1.0 boxes? If I just order any "new" HW box, can I assume I will get V1.0?
Most likely you'll get version 4.0 or later. (iView is already up to version 5.0.) But iView V3 firmware may still work on a V4.x HomeWorX. There's no way to know for sure.

I suppose what you could do is write down the HomeWorX firmware version you get, then try the iView firmware, and if it doesn't work, just tell Mediasonic you have both a HomeWorX and iView, and they're so similar you mistakenly updated the HomeWorX with the iView firmware. (Of course that assumes the iView firmware doesn't completely brick the HomeWorX so you can reload the firmware Mediasonic sends you iView's firmware update page is pretty scary.)
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post #1944 of 2229 Old 02-17-2016, 08:01 AM
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That doesn't necessary give you the hardware version. The HW version is hard-coded into the software - it's not read from the actual hardware configuration. So what is listed there may or may not give accurate information, depending whether the devs bothered to change the HW version to match the actual hardware configuration (some versions they definitely didn't) and whether it is the original software the box came with.
Not to mention the fact that @Klaatu58 already (successfully) updated his HomeWorX with iView firmware, thus overlaying whatever hardware version info was coded into the original firmware.

There might be some info printed on (or in - I assume it's out of warranty by now so it'd be safe to open) the box itself, but I wouldn't know where to look.
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post #1945 of 2229 Old 02-17-2016, 08:20 AM
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My Amazon orders indicate I have the Mediasonic HW-150PVR (http://www.amazon.com/Mediasonic-HW-.../dp/B00I2ZBD1U), purchased in July, 2014. I also found a filed called "usb_upgrade_all_flashV31.bin" on one of my hard drives. It's size is 3175KB.
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post #1946 of 2229 Old 02-17-2016, 08:25 AM
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A firmware update Mediasonic once sent you, perhaps?
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post #1947 of 2229 Old 02-17-2016, 08:36 AM
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Actually, I think this is the iView firmware V3 that I flashed onto my HW-150PVR box to make the iView remote work to address rramjet's question.
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post #1948 of 2229 Old 02-17-2016, 12:42 PM
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I have a copy of that file I downloaded from iView's web site some time ago. Mine is named "usb_upgrade_all_flashV3.bin;" almost the same except without the "1". It's the same size as yours, so there's a good chance it's the same file (iView V3 firmware).

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post #1949 of 2229 Old 02-17-2016, 04:14 PM
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A lot of talk about flashing iView firmware to the Mediasonic, but I have to ask why? The prices are fairly close and the Mediasonic, afaik, has superior firmware.

What's the purpose?
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post #1950 of 2229 Old 02-17-2016, 04:46 PM
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A lot of talk about flashing iView firmware to the Mediasonic, but I have to ask why?
What's the purpose?
iView's remote is better than HW's for reasons already mentioned. Flashing iView firmware V3 onto a HW V1 firmware box enables iView's remote to control HW's box.
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