Work in progress
I received an email in July inviting me to "sign up for a trial of our brand-new, next-generation video service. Your participation and feedback will be vital in helping us shape the future of our technology."
The Arris DCX3600-M was installed within a couple of days, so I've been living with it for almost two months now. I was never contacted by TWC for my feedback. But AVS might be a better place.
1. Very large hard drive with lots of room for HD recordings.
2. Elegant, small remote control which lights up when it is moved or touched. It lacks the myriad (and often confusing) buttons of the old TWC remote.
1. The Arris seems to respond faster than the old STB, but still not fast enough. For example: press '8' on the remote; eventually the TV shows the number '8' - if you're lucky. But the remote must issue a stream of IR commands for '8', because you're just as likely to get '88' or even '888'. This is especially aggravating if you're trying to input more than one number. Trying '82' might get you '82' if you're very fortunate, but it's more likely to give you '882' or '8882' or '822' - you get the idea.
2. 'Pause' and 'play' are the same button - and therefore the same IR command. As the remote issues a stream of IR commands, the chances of getting the DVR to go into 'play' mode instead of 'pause' are 50/50 (and vice-versa). This is very frustrating (and sometimes infuriating). I'm guessing the old box had identical commands for play and pause, but I never had his level of frustration.
3. A solution to these issues would be to modify the remote to issue one command at a time instead of a stream of commands. I don't know how easy it is to implement this.
4. TWC has chosen to allow only IR commands. Apparently the Arris box is capable of being controlled by Bluetooth. It's a great shame TWC chose not to activate this option.
5. The DVR menu is much changed from the one we are all familiar with - and not for the better.
a) To erase a show you have recorded but no longer want you have to press 'play' - wait for the recording to play back, then 'stop', then 'OK', then 'OK' again (for "are you sure you want to erase this?"). There is no option to simply erase the recording without going through this annoying procedure.
b) Once you have finished watching and erased a show, you will be presented with a screen listing similar shows you might want to watch. This might have seemed like a good idea to the programmer, but is instead very annoying. If I've recorded, say, a news broadcast to watch at a more convenient time, I don't need to be told about six other news shows before I'm able to continue. There should be an option to disable this "useful" feature.
c) This problem has almost been fixed, but for a time when you chose to record a program or series, the 'original' or 'original and repeats' option was either missing or hard to find. As a result I now have 14 recordings of the MTV Music Awards show. See 5a above to realize how annoying this is.
The whole DVR menu feels very clunky. I know the old menu for the Scientific Atlanta boxes was a bit outdated, but at least it was clear and easy to understand. This one needs a redesign from top to bottom.
That's it for now. I'm wondering whether to stick with this Arris or go back to the old STB with its smaller hard drive, but mush less frustrating interface.