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post #3421 of 9018 Old 11-29-2006, 10:18 PM
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Icon,
I'm responding to your PM about the RDC here, although the 8300 tips and tricks could be more appropriate.
Lower RDC is better!. Basically it's the level the STB has to pump out to get a signal back to the headend. A higher number means it takes more signal to get back, and also generates more heat.
Note that the amplifier power is doubled every 3.5 db increase. If you are at 33db now, someone with 40 db RDC requires 4x the power (and generated heat) to get the return signal back to the Head End.

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post #3422 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 10:24 AM
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The problem that I raised yesterday, in Post #3392, has now apparently been resolved by replacing the apparently damaged eSATA enclosure with a new one (this time an Apricorn EZ-BUS-DTS-EKIT R). I installed the HD in the new enclosure and connected it to the 8300HD. The DVR recognized the presence of the external drive and, since the HD was already formatted, went directly to the warning about the correct disconnection sequence. At this point, I entered DIAG and saw that the 8300HD was not correctly reporting the external drive's free space. I then did a cold reboot, went back into DIAG and was glad to see that the free space report is now accurate. Since the HD did not need to be reformatted, I'd hoped that its contents would still be available. Unfortunately, they're not.

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post #3423 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 11:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Manatus View Post

The problem that I raised yesterday, in Post #3392, has now apparently been resolved by replacing the apparently damaged eSATA enclosure with a new one (this time an Apricorn EZ-BUS-DTS-EKIT R). I installed the HD in the new enclosure and connected it to the 8300HD. The DVR recognized the presence of the external drive and, since the HD was already formatted, went directly to the warning about the correct disconnection sequence. At this point, I entered DIAG and saw that the 8300HD was not correctly reporting the external drive's free space. I then did a cold reboot, went back into DIAG and was glad to see that the free space report is now accurate. Since the HD did not need to be reformatted, I'd hoped that its contents would still be available. Unfortunately, they're not.

The damage to the enclosure was done when you "accidentally bumped into the power button on the external drive enclosure, turning it off?"
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post #3424 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pepar View Post

The damage to the enclosure was done when you "accidentally bumped into the power button on the external drive enclosure, turning it off?"

Yes. After the 8300HD+external drive wouldn't work after the drive was accidentally powered off (while it was running), by process of elimination, I guessed that the source of the problem was most likely a malfunction in the enclosure's electronics, not the DVR or the external HD.

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post #3425 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 11:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Manatus View Post

Yes. After the 8300HD+external drive wouldn't work after the drive was accidentally powered off (while it was running), by process of elimination, I guessed that the source of the problem was most likely a malfunction in the enclosure's electronics, not the DVR or the external HD.

Well, that's GOOD, but puzzling.
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post #3426 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 12:10 PM
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The WD SE16 500GB drive arrived yesterday. I installed it in the Apricorn enclosure, which took all of 3 minutes, and hooked it up as per the "Passport" instructions. First time flopped, but a cold reboot of the 8300 did the trick. Formatted the drive and my storage space jumped to 597GB. I kind of was expecting something closer to 650GB (160 internal + 500 external), but I guess it's that old DOS convention where the actual space on a hard drive is less than the "advertised" space. Whatever; it's a whole lot more than I had! I've got room for some 60 HD movies now, I figure.

I did a test recording right after that and it was perfect (thank you Passport Echo!). Since I had the internal drive mostly filled up (even had some hourglasses appear on the list the day before; then I watched something and they went away), I guess everything new I record from here on out will end up on the external drive. It would be so nice if the software allowed for directing content to the drive of choice and programs on the list would show up in different colors depending on which drive they got put on, as per the "original" plan when these external drives were first proposed. Now, you really don't know for sure where the content will end up. Note that this drive is not one "optimized for streaming video" (it can thus serve double duty in a computer someday if need be), and is very quiet.

While the drive itself is very quiet, one thing that bummed me out a little is that the Apricorn enclosure's fan is very audible. I mean, it's not bad, and is probably pretty quiet relatively speaking, but it was jarring to actually hear it in my theater room that was heretofore quite quiet. I wonder if I can wrap something around the case (leaving the front and back open, of course) that would attenuate the sound somewhat...? Anybody have any ideas?
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post #3427 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pepar View Post

The damage to the enclosure was done when you "accidentally bumped into the power button on the external drive enclosure, turning it off?"

I don't see how accidentally powering off the enclosure would be any different then purposely powering it off. Even if data was being written to the drive this should not happen. Clearly, something happened to the enclosure's electronics, either coincidently (but unrelated) with the power issue, or was brought about by the power being turned off. I'm not sure if the 'accidental' part of the power down is to blame.

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post #3428 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 12:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redjr View Post

I don't see how accidentally powering off the enclosure would be any different then purposely powering it off. Even if data was being written to the drive this should not happen. Clearly, something happened to the enclosure's electronics, either coincidently (but unrelated) with the power issue, or was brought about by the power being turned off. I'm not sure if the 'accidental' part of the power down is to blame.

That's why it's puzzling
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post #3429 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by archiguy View Post

The WD SE16 500GB drive arrived yesterday. I installed it in the Apricorn enclosure, which took all of 3 minutes, and hooked it up as per the "Passport" instructions. First time flopped, but a cold reboot of the 8300 did the trick. Formatted the drive and my storage space jumped to 597GB. I kind of was expecting something closer to 650GB (160 internal + 500 external), but I guess it's that old DOS convention where the actual space on a hard drive is less than the "advertised" space. Whatever; it's a whole lot more than I had! I've got room for some 60 HD movies now, I figure.

I did a test recording right after that and it was perfect (thank you Passport Echo!). Since I had the internal drive mostly filled up (even had some hourglasses appear on the list the day before; then I watched something and they went away), I guess everything new I record from here on out will end up on the external drive. It would be so nice if the software allowed for directing content to the drive of choice and programs on the list would show up in different colors depending on which drive they got put on, as per the "original" plan when these external drives were first proposed. Now, you really don't know for sure where the content will end up. Note that this drive is not one "optimized for streaming video" (it can thus serve double duty in a computer someday if need be), and is very quiet.

While the drive itself is very quiet, one thing that bummed me out a little is that the Apricorn enclosure's fan is very audible. I mean, it's not bad, and is probably pretty quiet relatively speaking, but it was jarring to actually hear it in my theater room that was heretofore quite quiet. I wonder if I can wrap something around the case (leaving the front and back open, of course) that would attenuate the sound somewhat...? Anybody have any ideas?

archiguy,

Good to hear the WD is working. I've been eyeing this drive too, but haven't made a decision yet. I missed the CompUSA deal a week ago. I have the same Apricorn enclosure. I'd be a little leary of wrapping the enclosure in acoustic-mat, or some such sound dampening material. Even with an internal fan, I would think the case needs some local exposure to help dissipate the heat - even though it runs relatively cool.(At least mine does, but then it's not a 500gigger either ).

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post #3430 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by pepar View Post

That's why it's puzzling


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post #3431 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 12:37 PM
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After it formats an external drive, Passport warns that it should not be "disconnected" before the DVR is powered (not just turned) off. I think that if any generalization can be drawn from my experience, that warning should be enlarged to include turning off, not just disconnecting, an external drive (whether accidentally or purposefully). I'm taking the further precaution of installing a hard plastic chastity belt over the drive's power switch, to avoid future mishaps of this sort.

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post #3432 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 12:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by archiguy View Post

While the drive itself is very quiet, one thing that bummed me out a little is that the Apricorn enclosure's fan is very audible. I mean, it's not bad, and is probably pretty quiet relatively speaking, but it was jarring to actually hear it in my theater room that was heretofore quite quiet. I wonder if I can wrap something around the case (leaving the front and back open, of course) that would attenuate the sound somewhat...? Anybody have any ideas?

Your fan is your friend. Don't do anything that would lessen the heat dissipation of the enclosure. Have you thought about modding the enclosure by swapping the fan for a quieter one with similar CFM?
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post #3433 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 01:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pepar View Post

Your fan is your friend. Don't do anything that would lessen the heat dissipation of the enclosure. Have you thought about modding the enclosure by swapping the fan for a quieter one with similar CFM?

Well, the only air intake/exhaust on the enclosure is on the front. Looks like it sucks in air at the top, then flushes it out at the bottom. The case itself stays pretty cool. Seems like I could wrap something like the acoustic mat that redjr mentioned around the enclosure without affecting the airflow around the drive or the grills on the front.

I don't know if I can get another, more quiet fan as this one seems to be designed to fit in this particular enclosure. It's actually in the center of the bottom of the enclosure, which has a "false floor" that the hard drive sits on. There is a gap between this false floor and the bottom-outside cover that acts as a plenum for flushing the hot air back out the grill on the front. Pretty ingenious design, actually. I haven't seen any others though; for all I know they're all made this way.
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Originally Posted by archiguy View Post

Well, the only air intake/exhaust on the enclosure is on the front. Looks like it sucks in air at the top, then flushes it out at the bottom. The case itself stays pretty cool. Seems like I could wrap something like the acoustic mat that redjr mentioned around the enclosure without affecting the airflow around the drive or the grills on the front.

I don't know if I can get another, more quiet fan as this one seems to be designed to fit in this particular enclosure. It's actually in the center of the bottom of the enclosure, which has a "false floor" that the hard drive sits on. There is a gap between this false floor and the bottom-outside cover that acts as a plenum for flushing the hot air back out the grill on the front. Pretty ingenious design, actually. I haven't seen any others though; for all I know they're all made this way.

Can you point me to a picture of your enclosure?
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post #3435 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 01:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pepar View Post

Can you point me to a picture of your enclosure?

I think that I can (same enclosure that I just installed today, I believe):

http://apricorn.com/pdf_product_manu...evision2.1.pdf (Look at page 7).

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post #3436 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 01:37 PM
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Can an external drive be set up in a room in the floor below where my STB is?
I'm talking about a total distance of no more than 8 feet from the STB to the external HD. My thinking is that this would eliminate any noise problems as archiguy mentioned and also keep it away from any unfortunate accidents as Manatus experienced.

TIA

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post #3437 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 01:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pepar View Post

Your fan is your friend. Don't do anything that would lessen the heat dissipation of the enclosure. Have you thought about modding the enclosure by swapping the fan for a quieter one with similar CFM?

pepar,

That enclosure fan is very unqiue and not easily removed and replaced with something different. When I put my drive in mine, I noticed the fan and it looks very similar to the type of fan used on video cards in laptops these days - very thin, only about 1/4-3/8" thick, but about 2- 2.5" in diameter. So, it's very flat. It looks like it was designed specifically for the enclosure. With enough time and effort anything can be modded, but in this case(no pun intended) I'm not sure it's worth the effort.

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post #3438 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 01:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Manatus View Post

I think that I can (same enclosure that I just installed today, I believe):

http://apricorn.com/pdf_product_manu...evision2.1.pdf (Look at page 7).

redjr's right, this is a proprietary - of at least custom-made - fan. No dice on "upgrading" it.
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post #3439 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 01:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LL3HD View Post

Can an external drive be set up in a room in the floor below where my STB is?
I'm talking about a total distance of no more than 8 feet from the STB to the external HD. My thinking is that this would eliminate any noise problems as archiguy mentioned and also keep it away from any unfortunate accidents as Manatus experienced.

TIA

I wouldn't think that would be a problem - you'd need an extension cord for the power and a long enough eSATA cable. That would probably be the ideal solution, in fact. Since you need to keep it running 24/7, it really doesn't matter where it is.

I'd attach a couple of pictures if I could figure out how to get "image shack" loaded on my computer.
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post #3440 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LL3HD View Post

Can an external drive be set up in a room in the floor below where my STB is?
I'm talking about a total distance of no more than 8 feet from the STB to the external HD. My thinking is that this would eliminate any noise problems as archiguy mentioned and also keep it away from any unfortunate accidents as Manatus experienced.

TIA

I'm not sure, but I think the max length on a shielded eSATA cable is about 3 meters. It might do 8', but still iffy. There might be some 'industrial' strength eSATA cables that would go further - but maybe not worth the added expense.

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post #3441 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LL3HD View Post

Can an external drive be set up in a room in the floor below where my STB is?
I'm talking about a total distance of no more than 8 feet from the STB to the external HD. My thinking is that this would eliminate any noise problems as archiguy mentioned and also keep it away from any unfortunate accidents as Manatus experienced.

TIA

Within the cable length limits of eSATA and if it gets adequate ventilation, you can stick it anywhere.
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post #3442 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 08:50 PM
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OK, so I have been looking for an answer to resolve a problem I was having with my SATA drive and I'm coming to the conclusion that there is no solution. To repeat, the problem was that during recording, I would get occasional picture distortion throughout (such as macro-blocking). This would occur not only during playback, but WHILE a program was actually recording live. I've tried many workarounds, hoping I would not have to sacrifice all my recordings on my external drive, but it seems that I have exhausted every possible angle. Tonight for the first time, I unplugged my SATA drive from the 8300HD, reset the box, and recorded an HD program to the internal drive; the recording was absolutely PERFECT, just as it always used to be before the addition of the external drive. Now that there is no doubt in my mind that the SATA drive was the problem, I am going to just break down and buy another SATA drive. This is where I need help. I need to know if there's anyone on here who has found a drive/enclosure combination that records just as flawlessly as the internal drive of the 8300HD does. I'm talking about NO picture glitches, digital breakup, macro-blocking, whatever. I know this kind of thing is common SOME TIMES, but it should definitely not happen as often as it did when I had my external drive. The type of SATA drive I had was a Seagate 500GB drive (7200 RPM, 16 MB Cache) and a Coolmax USB/SATA enclosure. I have heard often times around here that a drive over 300 GB or so can cause the kind of picture breakup I was experiencing. Is there any truth to this? I've also heard some of the Western Digital SATA drives seem to work well, but all this I still need confirmation of by someone here. Also, the Seagate drive I had was NOISY as HELL. I swear, especially like in scenes of a movie where it's quiet, that freaking drive made so much noise. So I guess that was two problems I had: a noisy drive and those "hiccups" in the picture. For reference, my 8300HD is a SARA, version 1.88.22.1 ( as seen in my signature). So again, anyone on here who has found a drive/enclosure combo that works completely glitch-free, I'd be more than appreciative if you could point me in the direction of where I might find one. Thanks in advance for helping me end my frustration.

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post #3443 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 10:07 PM
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Originally Posted by cuzzin View Post

OK, so I have been looking for an answer to resolve a problem I was having with my SATA drive and I'm coming to the conclusion that there is no solution. To repeat, the problem was that during recording, I would get occasional picture distortion throughout (such as macro-blocking). This would occur not only during playback, but WHILE a program was actually recording live. I've tried many workarounds, hoping I would not have to sacrifice all my recordings on my external drive, but it seems that I have exhausted every possible angle. Tonight for the first time, I unplugged my SATA drive from the 8300HD, reset the box, and recorded an HD program to the internal drive; the recording was absolutely PERFECT, just as it always used to be before the addition of the external drive. Now that there is no doubt in my mind that the SATA drive was the problem, I am going to just break down and buy another SATA drive. This is where I need help. I need to know if there's anyone on here who has found a drive/enclosure combination that records just as flawlessly as the internal drive of the 8300HD does. I'm talking about NO picture glitches, digital breakup, macro-blocking, whatever. I know this kind of thing is common SOME TIMES, but it should definitely not happen as often as it did when I had my external drive. The type of SATA drive I had was a Seagate 500GB drive (7200 RPM, 16 MB Cache) and a Coolmax USB/SATA enclosure. I have heard often times around here that a drive over 300 GB or so can cause the kind of picture breakup I was experiencing. Is there any truth to this? I've also heard some of the Western Digital SATA drives seem to work well, but all this I still need confirmation of by someone here. Also, the Seagate drive I had was NOISY as HELL. I swear, especially like in scenes of a movie where it's quiet, that freaking drive made so much noise. So I guess that was two problems I had: a noisy drive and those "hiccups" in the picture. For reference, my 8300HD is a SARA, version 1.88.22.1 ( as seen in my signature). So again, anyone on here who has found a drive/enclosure combo that works completely glitch-free, I'd be more than appreciative if you could point me in the direction of where I might find one. Thanks in advance for helping me end my frustration.

I haven't done a lot of recording per se, but I noticed a glitch every now and then without the SATA drive attached. I personally don't think HD recording has been perfected yet!

I do know, that at least in my 8300HD box is a WD 160GB 7200 SE drive. So, TWC in Upstate, NY uses SA boxes configured with WD drives. I don't think the SE line of drives is optimized for video streaming either. I'm seriously looking at the WD 500GB 7200 SE SATA drive to put in my Apricorn enclosure. Seems to be a safe bet.

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post #3444 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 10:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cuzzin View Post

So again, anyone on here who has found a drive/enclosure combo that works completely glitch-free, I'd be more than appreciative if you could point me in the direction of where I might find one. Thanks in advance for helping me end my frustration.



Try Western Digital, I've been running the 320gb and 500gb 16mb cache versions for two months and they are absolutely glitch free even at full capacity.
Give any of this drives a try :
500gb drive free shipping and less than 30cents per gig.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822136003
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822136014
I experimented using Coolmax, Vantec and Sabrent I don't noticed any difference in performance maybe in cooling but these drives run very cool and quiet.
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post #3445 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redjr View Post

I haven't done a lot of recording per se, but I noticed a glitch every now and then without the SATA drive attached. I personally don't think HD recording has been perfected yet!

I do know, that at least in my 8300HD box is a WD 160GB 7200 SE drive. So, TWC in Upstate, NY uses SA boxes configured with WD drives. I don't think the SE line of drives is optimized for video streaming either. I'm seriously looking at the WD 500GB 7200 SE SATA drive to put in my Apricorn enclosure. Seems to be a safe bet.

Ok, so the 8300HDs themselves use Western Digital drives? If thats the case, WD should be a safe bet, right? And yeah, I know a glitches do pop up on rare occasions, but they were all over the place with my Seagate drive. As far as the WD drives go, is there any particular type you should look for or would any WD SATA drive do?

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post #3446 of 9018 Old 11-30-2006, 11:07 PM
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Try Western Digital, I've been running the 320gb and 500gb 16mb cache versions for two months and they are absolutely glitch free even at full capacity.
Give any of this drives a try :
500gb drive free shipping and less than 30cents per gig.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822136003
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822136014
I experimented using Coolmax, Vantec and Sabrent I don't noticed any difference in performance maybe in cooling but these drives run very cool and quiet.

Thanks for the reccomendation. So the WD drives seem to be the way to go from what I'm reading around here. I believe I might be able to drop by my BestBuy store and pick one up. There is no special type of WD SATA drive I need to be looking for right? As long as it is a Western Digital SATA, will I be all set? I'll probably give the 500 GB a shot.

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post #3447 of 9018 Old 12-01-2006, 01:50 AM
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Please forgive me if this has already been covered in this thread. Yes I tried a search and got frustrated sifting through a lot of pages only not to find my answer. Maybe its here, I dont know.

Anyways, are you able to take the external drive and connect it to a computer and watch content from the computer instead of the 8300? Are you able to move files on that hard drive? Can you take the recorded programs and move them onto another drive on your computer or are you only able to delete them?

All I got when surfing this thread was the mention that the content can only be deleted. I am looking for confirmation on this and the other questions so any help is greatly appreciated.
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post #3448 of 9018 Old 12-01-2006, 04:21 AM
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Thanks for the reccomendation. So the WD drives seem to be the way to go from what I'm reading around here. I believe I might be able to drop by my BestBuy store and pick one up. There is no special type of WD SATA drive I need to be looking for right? As long as it is a Western Digital SATA, will I be all set? I'll probably give the 500 GB a shot.

I don't think it's the drive that's the problem. You're on SARA; that's the problem. That software package doesn't seem to handle big drives as well as Passport - that's what I've gleaned from this thread. Passport seems to be much more "forgiving".

If you're on SARA, the smart money says to stay with smaller drives "optimized for streaming video". Anything else seems to lead to problems.
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post #3449 of 9018 Old 12-01-2006, 04:27 AM
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Anyways, are you able to take the external drive and connect it to a computer and watch content from the computer instead of the 8300? Are you able to move files on that hard drive? Can you take the recorded programs and move them onto another drive on your computer or are you only able to delete them?

The external drives seem to be locked into the specific DVR that formats them. They can't be moved to another DVR, nor can they be attached to a computer. Thus, the files on the external drive are accessible only by the DVR that originally recorded them.

However, some smart guy ought to be able to crack the code and remove those restrictions; it's just computer code, after all.
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post #3450 of 9018 Old 12-01-2006, 04:33 AM
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Please forgive me if this has already been covered in this thread. Yes I tried a search and got frustrated sifting through a lot of pages only not to find my answer. Maybe its here, I dont know.

Anyways, are you able to take the external drive and connect it to a computer and watch content from the computer instead of the 8300? Are you able to move files on that hard drive? Can you take the recorded programs and move them onto another drive on your computer or are you only able to delete them?

All I got when surfing this thread was the mention that the content can only be deleted. I am looking for confirmation on this and the other questions so any help is greatly appreciated.

Programs recorded on an external drive connected to a SA8300HD can be viewed only on the DVR that recorded them, not even on any other 8300HD and not on any computer. Search this and related threads for "encryption" and "file system" for lots of info on these topics.

Forsan et haec olim meminisse juvabit. -- Popeye

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