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Weird Problem: Samsung LCD TV seems to be blocking Girder Commands

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi folks. I'm a long-time reader but I've never felt the need to post until now. I have a weird problem that has me utterly frustrated.

I have a Samsung LN-T4061 LCD TV hooked up to my ATI Radeon HD 2600XT via HDMI. I'm attempting to load and use Mediaportal with my remote using Girder 3.3 to send the commands. I had this setup working perfectly when my PC was connected via plain vanilla VGA but, for some reason, Girder just won't send IR commands when I'm hooked up to HDMI.

Furthermore, As soon as I turn my TV off, Girder starts responding normally and I can load and operate Mediaportal as before (although blindly). Turn the TV back on and Girder refuses to send the IR commands again. I've verified that the commands still work by using the "Test Command" function, it's just that it won't process the IR signals.

I'm completely at a loss as to why it's behaving this way and don't even know how to go about diagnosing it. Anybody have any ideas?
post #2 of 9
That's a good one?

While I don't have a firm answer to your problem but I would try Girder 4 or 5 trial. I know they made deep change into the generic serial plugin after 3.3.

I would post my Girder related problems on Promixis forum, the guys are very high skilled.

post #3 of 9
Just so I'm clear on your setup. Girder is controlling your TV via IR as opposed to your remote talking directly to your TV, right?

Have you determined if it is a problem with Girder receiving your remote's IR commands or girder sending the IR commands to your TV?

Bring up the log window, with the TV on and off, and press buttons on your remote. Does everything look right? I've never used version 3.3, but this is what I do with version 5 to diagnose problem.

Had you not said it worked fine with VGA, then I would have said that it sounds like your TV is interfering with your remote's IR signal, but now I'm not sure. Did anything else change? TV move to another room? More florescent lights in TV room or rooms close by? IR receiver moved? I've had lots of IR interference problems in the past, from nearby kitchen florescent lights and my LCD TV. Going RF fixed everything.

If your TV is not connected to your PC via serial, and everything works fine with the TV off, then I'd try to see if it really is IR interference. Turn off all the lights in the room and shield the IR receiver from the TV (move it and/or put your hands around it and the remote) and try it out.

Lastly, you should try out version 4 or 5 and check out the official forums. They've helped me before in the past with my setup. I had a weird problem and one of the developers quickly saw that I found a bug in version 5. He fixed it in a matter of hours and had a new release out.
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the quick replies!

I've been to the Proximis forum and read through some of the 3.3 threads but it doesn't look like anybody's still supporting this version. I actually tried ver 4 trial a few years ago but I just couldn't get used to the new look and feel. Since 3.3 was working fine for me (until last night) I really had no reason to upgrade. I might give the newer trial version a shot but I'd like to explore other options first. I've not checked any logs yet. Will do so this evening.

Some further info (I'm not at home right now so the following is from memory):

This is a dual-monitor setup with the TV as the secondary monitor with an extended desktop. My remote is trying to send my PC commands (load program, directional arrows, select, play/pause, etc.) via Girder for it to display and run Mediaportal on the secondary monitor. Again, this worked fine with VGA.

In fact, nothing has changed except swapping the VGA cable with HDMI. PC location, lighting, IR receiver (IRMan), and remote (Logitech Harmony 628) all remain the same. Girder commands still work using both the "Test Command" function and keyboard input plugin so it's definitely just an IR problem (sending or receiving I don't know, yet).

Could this be an HDCP issue? Or some other quirk of HDMI with which I'm not familiar?

Mysterious and very, very frustrating.
post #5 of 9
What you're really saying is that you press a button on the remote and it does something on the computer (via a IR receiver and girder as the software). But, with the TV on it does not work.

I'd guess the TV is transmitting something that is interfering with the IR signal. It's likely either the light from the screen or it's an electrical signal messing up the IR receiver hooked to the computer.

post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Well, I had some free time stop at home and fool around with the system. It looks like mslide and JoshDorhyke were right, there's some kind of signal interference coming from the TV.

I put up a low-tech IR shield around the receiver (dirty black dress sock) and was able to use my remote successfully. I don't know why this showed up now instead of when I bought the TV 2 years ago but I guess maybe I shifted some wires around or swivelled the TV a little too far. It certainly caused a major headache and a lot of wasted hours last night.

Oh well, at least I have a workable solution. Will upgrade the IR shield when budget allows or the next laundry cycle comes around, whichever comes first

post #7 of 9
Was just thinking, maybe the batteries in the remote are going dead and the signal is weaker?

I had a TV that would change channels and other strange things with curtains open and daylight in the room. They replaced the IR receiver parts and it quit acting up.

post #8 of 9
Thanks for this thread.
I was wondering why my mce led was always blinking or on all the time. I had the Ir receiver sitting on the top of my Samsung lcd tv moved it back against the wall and everything is fine..

post #9 of 9
I read about this problem somewhere else at AVS and the problem is the TV emits IR. It blocked someones AVR remote but the cover trick worked also. I think he used tape, don't remember.
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