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The Official AVS Dish DTVPal DVR Topic! - Page 384

post #11491 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by BargainHunter View Post

No dislike necessarily, just at the bottom of the current rankings (for me) when evaluating preferences.

I'd think everyone agrees with you on Dish's so-called warranty, that in some cases IIRC somewhere back in these 11,500+ posts I've also followed since inception--one or more early adopters reported Dish replacing one defective DVR with another defective and non-new DVR.

When I got mine at SEARS Dish had already discontinued the DVR. So I bet no 90 days either.

Due to many complaining. Although mostly from FR101 I still decided I wanted some protection. I knew they would never be able to fix or replace.
post #11492 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by keyboard21 View Post

2 years. I realize it is not the best. I figured it was better then 90 days and then nothing from dish. Also since I bought it when Dish had discontinued the product. I bet it was 0 days warranty from Dish the day I bought it

Yeah, and you can buy anything from Sears within two years. I really hate those short time limits.
post #11493 of 18096
Hello. Well, it's nice but dang it's almost huge as my old Toshiba W-627 VCR from a decade ago or so! I hope it doesn't get hot during the heat waves (can be up to 90F in my upstair room ).

Good news: I have the latest firmware when I checked through its network update on my cable modem service. At least I won't have to worry about bricking it. Darn that the company hasn't released new updates for a while.

Bad news:
#1: I had to keep my because I need to watch videos fullscreen to my old Sharp CRT TV (from 1996) through line in through S-Video to composite cables (adapter too).

#2: At the same time, old my VCR remote control (VC-625) stopped working! I am pretty sure it is the old remote control because in the past, it was not responsive well and sometimes I have to hit it hard with my hands to make it work again. Now, I think it is totally dead even after testing its two old AAA batteries and trying another pair.

Anyways, I noticed DTVPal remote controls can handle VCRs. However, I am confused with its instructions on "Mode" on the devices. Um, where is that? I cannot find its "mode" button text label on both remote controls. I can tell you my VCR is about a decade old because I remember buying it during dotcom days and when TiVo was very new and expensive.

Even if I did get its remote control to work, how would I tell the VCR to change input (e.g., line input (1 and 2) and channel 3) like on its old remote control (labelled "i. select")? I did not see one on DTVPal DVR's remote control.

#3: Do I remove or leave in the white card under my DTV Pal DVR in its card slot? Has anyone found use for it yet? Hacked it?

#4: Is there a way to tell DTV Pal DVR not to do automatic recording like VCR? There are times I don't want to record anything at all like during the summer time, winter breaks (like now!), etc. Or maybe I should unplug its AC to do that (is that OK?)?

Hmm, maybe I should dump both VCR and working CRT TV to get a cheap small HDTV?

Thank you in advance.
post #11494 of 18096
Quote:
Still disagree with the "experts" who claim leaving a hard drive running 24 hrs a day is less stressful than daily boot up cycles.
Power cycling a HDD in short periods of time would be a issue. BUT, having a HDD spin 24/7 is just plain stupid. No, it's not a energy use issue, it's a wear and heat issue.
I set my HDD's to spin down after 10 minutes on any PC I have worked on (mine and others) and have have done so for probably 10 years. The only failures were data related, not mechanical! Out of say, 20+ drives, only two had to be replaced. One under warranty fro a known manufacturing defect and the other because of age.
Quote:
I've come to believe that failure of the power supply board is what kills them, once that happens, it's dead in the water.
Power supplies can be repaired. Nothing proprietary there compared to the main board.
Quote:
Well, it's nice but dang it's almost huge as my old Toshiba W-627 VCR from a decade ago or so!
Huge???
This is a CECB STB.
It's much smaller than a standard rack width (17") piece of equipment. The HDD is suspended over the two circuit boards to compact it more. To it's favor it does run cool compared to older MSO provided DVR's.
post #11495 of 18096
phildaant;
"Mode' means the mode the remote is in; DVR, TV, VCR or Aux. The four buttons at the top of the remote.
It doesn't matter if that so called "Smart" card is there or not AFAIK.
The only "automatic" recordings are the one hour 'buffer" when the unit is 'on' and when you schedule a daily or weekly recording through the guide.
post #11496 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

Hmm, maybe I should dump both VCR and working CRT TV to get a cheap small HDTV?
This
post #11497 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by P Smith View Post

Reading all 11K+ posts here, I don't have a base for such conclusion. No one reported about power supply malfunction.
Personally, I fixed one TR-50 of a member here - it had corrupted flash content [FW] after attempted to update FW.
So far it IS one real reason of many 'dead' DTVPal DVRs.

BTW, by reading posts you can't make such definitive conclusion - you'll need to test those devices first.

Well, I do have a base for such conclusion..... I have two working units, and one foolishly purchased on EBay (posted about it here before) that is stuck on the boot screen. At the time I bought it, I wasn't aware of all the technical problems this machine had. I originally held off a year after the
DTVPAL came out, from buying one new, because of the hundreds of posts
on the Internet regarding failure and lack of customer service from Dish Network.
Now, the used unit from EBay, I was under the impression from the seller that hard drive failure was at fault, and mistakenly thought by replacing it,
the unit would work. No such luck. I am not an engineer, technician, or anything else, but I do know how to use a voltmeter ( from back in the analog world days ). The power supply board connects to the main circuit board by a series of push-on pins, and on this board are printed values.
When I checked these values, they were way off spec. (with the unit on).

Logically, if the machine boots, the hard drive spins, and there is video output, one would have to assume that incorrect voltages are being sent to the main board from the power supply. I don't know about electronic theory or how to probe capacitors and voltage regulators, to me it just makes the most sense. Since the components are Made in China, that should be an indication of future failure right there.

I believe corrupted flash content is way different than component failure, it
would have been beneficial if you posted exactly what you did.... then we can all learn from the experience.

The only way for me to tell if my theory is correct, is to pull one of the p.s.
boards out of a working unit, and see if that fixes the broken one.
I'm not about to do that, don't want to void any warranties, and wish the functioning units to stay operational as long as possible.

Many people that bought the PAL with the latest firmware, still reported failure and unrepairable units. On my broken machine, I've tried every possible suggestion posted in this forum, and a few of my own, nothing
will make it come back to life......
post #11498 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

Power cycling a HDD in short periods of time would be a issue. BUT, having a HDD spin 24/7 is just plain stupid. No, it's not a energy use issue, it's a wear and heat issue.
I set my HDD's to spin down after 10 minutes on any PC I have worked on (mine and others) and have have done so for probably 10 years. The only failures were data related, not mechanical! Out of say, 20+ drives, only two had to be replaced. One under warranty fro a known manufacturing defect and the other because of age.Power supplies can be repaired. Nothing proprietary there compared to the main board.Huge???
This is a CECB STB.
It's much smaller than a standard rack width (17") piece of equipment. The HDD is suspended over the two circuit boards to compact it more. To it's favor it does run cool compared to older MSO provided DVR's.

I never spin down my HDDs in my desktop PCs and rarely had problems with them. I still have old IDE/PATA HDDs! Now, CD and DVD drives is a different story. I have had a Plextor CD burner that lasted right after a year and its one year warranty expired (should had not kept my CDs in the drive often).
post #11499 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

Maybe I've missed it, but I'm not aware of anyone ever being able to actually get one of these repaired - 3rd party extended warranty or not.

That's exactly my point.... no one has ever reported getting it fixed or being able to order parts, or anything else. I even took my broken unit to a Dish Network authorized service center, on the phone the guy said they can repair DVR's, but when I showed him the DTVPAL, he freaked and practically had a heart attack..... explaining there's no way he can repair it.
Conspiracy theories, anyone ?

I completely agree with your statements regarding people here who condescend upon those with certain views or express their opinions other than the scope of what's "expected". Most of us don't have the time to read thru 300 + pages of posts, I myself had no idea the first page is "updated" on a regular basis
post #11500 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post

phildaant;
"Mode' means the mode the remote is in; DVR, TV, VCR or Aux. The four buttons at the top of the remote.
It doesn't matter if that so called "Smart" card is there or not AFAIK...

Thanks!

Now, "Mode" makes sense. Yay, I got DTV Pal remote control to work with my VCR. It took a while too! Um, is there a way to change/select VCR's line input (line 1/2 and channel 3) from this remote control like my old VCR remote control?

I removed the useless card then and taped it inside my hardcopy manual. I did not see any differences with and without it.

New Questions:
1. My audio controls from DTV Pal DVR doesn't seem to change/toggle when using DTV Pal DVR (not TV). Mute and audio volume changes do not happen like my old non-DVR DTV Pal I had before. Any ideas? I use the internal speakers from my old CRT TV so it would be PCM stereo. Maybe I missed/misconfigured something?

2. Is there a way to move Closed Captionings/CCs down more on my TV like in its black bar when in widescreen mode?

3. Are there other DTV Pal DVR manuals, FAQ, readings, etc. beside the awesome posts and FAQ in this forum?
post #11501 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by joecass View Post

... I completely agree with your statements regarding people here who condescend upon those with certain views or express their opinions other than the scope of what's "expected". Most of us don't have the time to read thru 300 + pages of posts, I myself had no idea the first page is "updated" on a regular basis

Same here, but it hasn't been updated since May 11th, 2010. Good for me since not much changed and probably won't change for my new DTV Pal DVR.
post #11502 of 18096
When I checked these values, they were way off spec. (with the unit on).
I can tell you - first, when you're telling ... post the values, not your expression; second - those 'way off' (?) values could be a result of problems on component level of main board; third - if the device stuck in boot sequence, then the values shouldn't be "way off" or the boot will not happen.
We are at same position as a doctor and a patient - it's require physical visit, not phone/forum interaction. Or you must become the "doctor", ie learn electronics and how repair it.
post #11503 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooper View Post

The DTVPAL DVR only records from one input - the RF ATSC .

As for the rest - the modulator probably requires A/C power.

Question: Are there any devices that can do without AC power plugs if I want to replace my old VCR and since I can't control/select its line inputs due to its broken remote control?
post #11504 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by joecass View Post

Well, I do have a base for such conclusion..... I have two working units, and one foolishly purchased on EBay (posted about it here before) that is stuck on the boot screen. At the time I bought it, I wasn't aware of all the technical problems this machine had. I originally held off a year after the
DTVPAL came out, from buying one new, because of the hundreds of posts
on the Internet regarding failure and lack of customer service from Dish Network.
Now, the used unit from EBay, I was under the impression from the seller that hard drive failure was at fault, and mistakenly thought by replacing it,
the unit would work. No such luck. I am not an engineer, technician, or anything else, but I do know how to use a voltmeter ( from back in the analog world days ). The power supply board connects to the main circuit board by a series of push-on pins, and on this board are printed values.
When I checked these values, they were way off spec. (with the unit on).

Logically, if the machine boots, the hard drive spins, and there is video output, one would have to assume that incorrect voltages are being sent to the main board from the power supply. I don't know about electronic theory or how to probe capacitors and voltage regulators, to me it just makes the most sense. Since the components are Made in China, that should be an indication of future failure right there.

I believe corrupted flash content is way different than component failure, it
would have been beneficial if you posted exactly what you did.... then we can all learn from the experience.

The only way for me to tell if my theory is correct, is to pull one of the p.s.
boards out of a working unit, and see if that fixes the broken one.
I'm not about to do that, don't want to void any warranties, and wish the functioning units to stay operational as long as possible.

Many people that bought the PAL with the latest firmware, still reported failure and unrepairable units. On my broken machine, I've tried every possible suggestion posted in this forum, and a few of my own, nothing
will make it come back to life......


You have some Chineese Caps on the SMPS (power supply) that have failed, they may exhibit signs of failure i.e. swolen tops, leaking electrolyte, etc.... Some may just have to be ESR'ed to be diagnosed. It makes sense that you see the dish boot screen and it hangs there, PC mainboards do this with bad caps also..... Takes alot MORE wattage to drive the processor up to speed beyond the post/ boot pre screens.....

Many newer tv's are having bad chicom cap issues BTW......
post #11505 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

New Questions:
1. My audio controls from DTV Pal DVR doesn't seem to change/toggle when using DTV Pal DVR (not TV). Mute and audio volume changes do not happen like my old non-DVR DTV Pal I had before. Any ideas? I use the internal speakers from my old CRT TV so it would be PCM stereo. Maybe I missed/misconfigured something?

Unclear (to me anyway).

The mute and volume buttons should map to the tv mute and volume buttons. If they work in TV mode they should work the same way in DTVPAL mode.

Some useful info at: http://tech.dishnetwork.com/departme...tes/20.0.shtml
post #11506 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete-N2 View Post

Unclear (to me anyway).

The mute and volume buttons should map to the tv mute and volume buttons. If they work in TV mode they should work the same way in DTVPAL mode...

Doesn't DTV Pal DVR use its own volume control to feed to the TV speakers? I know the old non-DVR DTV Pal had its own volume control that doesn't control's TV. I think it just increase the audio volume to the TV speakers?
post #11507 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by lesterl View Post

You have some Chineese Caps on the SMPS (power supply) that have failed, they may exhibit signs of failure i.e. swolen tops, leaking electrolyte, etc.... Some may just have to be ESR'ed to be diagnosed. It makes sense that you see the dish boot screen and it hangs there, PC mainboards do this with bad caps also..... Takes alot MORE wattage to drive the processor up to speed beyond the post/ boot pre screens.....

Many newer tv's are having bad chicom cap issues BTW......

Ugh, they're still having problems? Is there a way to check with ones have bad caps before buying electronics? Can those busted caps can be replaced easily?
post #11508 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

I never spin down my HDDs in my desktop PCs and rarely had problems with them. I still have old IDE/PATA HDDs! Now, CD and DVD drives is a different story. I have had a Plextor CD burner that lasted right after a year and its one year warranty expired (should had not kept my CDs in the drive often).

I used to manage several DEC VAX systems and I asked the DEC repair guy what he had seen in the keep on vs shut down issue and he said the units that get shut down every night had a lot of failures initially but once all the infant mortality issues were solved he could not tell that it made any differance.
post #11509 of 18096
These are too darn expensive
post #11510 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by joecass View Post

That's exactly my point.... no one has ever reported getting it fixed or being able to order parts, or anything else. I even took my broken unit to a Dish Network authorized service center, on the phone the guy said they can repair DVR's, but when I showed him the DTVPAL, he freaked and practically had a heart attack..... explaining there's no way he can repair it.
Conspiracy theories, anyone ?

I completely agree with your statements regarding people here who condescend upon those with certain views or express their opinions other than the scope of what's "expected". Most of us don't have the time to read thru 300 + pages of posts, I myself had no idea the first page is "updated" on a regular basis

There is a big bar that says read this first and that it is keep up to date with lessons learned etc.

I think P SMITH said he had flashed a PROM for someone but that is the only repair I have heard of. My guess is that considering the price point and market this was intended to be a throw away unit if it failed. Too bad for some of us because I don't mind thwowing away $250 as much as I would hate to lose the capability this little box gives me.
post #11511 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

Doesn't DTV Pal DVR use its own volume control to feed to the TV speakers? I know the old non-DVR DTV Pal had its own volume control that doesn't control's TV. I think it just increase the audio volume to the TV speakers?

No, no dvr does you need to program your TV into the remote
post #11512 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

Doesn't DTV Pal DVR use its own volume control to feed to the TV speakers? I know the old non-DVR DTV Pal had its own volume control that doesn't control's TV. I think it just increase the audio volume to the TV speakers?

Many CECB's control the volume. The DTVPAL like most other VCR's and DVR's has a fixed output.

In other words No. So configure the remote in tv mode for your tv and then all "modes" will map (send) those tv volume codes.
post #11513 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

Doesn't DTV Pal DVR use its own volume control to feed to the TV speakers? I know the old non-DVR DTV Pal had its own volume control that doesn't control's TV. I think it just increase the audio volume to the TV speakers?

Pete is correct. Mute and volume control are mapped to the TV. If your TV displays when in mute you will see it when/if you get the thing to work.

Early on someone here recommeded the Harmony remote and after a while I bought one. It takes some doing to get it to work with the DTVPal DVR (they say they support it but what they really support is another Dish product that shares the same codes. Also if you have changed the remote ID it gets even more interesting.) But once you get everything up and working life becomes a lot easier and you have access to all the functions for every device.
post #11514 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by WillN937 View Post

Pete is correct. Mute and volume control are mapped to the TV. If your TV displays when in mute you will see it when/if you get the thing to work.

Early on someone here recommeded the Harmony remote and after a while I bought one. It takes some doing to get it to work with the DTVPal DVR (they say they support it but what they really support is another Dish product that shares the same codes. Also if you have changed the remote ID it gets even more interesting.) But once you get everything up and working life becomes a lot easier and you have access to all the functions for every device.

Thanks all. That was weird that the non-DVR DTV Pal had its own volume control. Heh.
post #11515 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by zoro View Post

These are too darn expensive

What are too expensive? Please quote!
post #11516 of 18096
Just for kicks, I was curious what ports it had when connected on my LAN:

# nmap 192.168.0.5
Starting Nmap 5.00 ( http://nmap.org ) at 2011-01-02 14:12 PST
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46470 > 192.168.0.5:995 S ttl=39 id=31768 iplen=44 seq=2134850063 win=4096
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46470 > 192.168.0.5:21 S ttl=40 id=18540 iplen=44 seq=2134850063 win=1024
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46470 > 192.168.0.5:587 S ttl=43 id=63783 iplen=44 seq=2134850063 win=4096
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46470 > 192.168.0.5:23 S ttl=39 id=19814 iplen=44 seq=2134850063 win=4096
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46470 > 192.168.0.5:443 S ttl=40 id=6861 iplen=44 seq=2134850063 win=1024
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46470 > 192.168.0.5:80 S ttl=53 id=62434 iplen=44 seq=2134850063 win=2048
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46470 > 192.168.0.5:256 S ttl=49 id=3284 iplen=44 seq=2134850063 win=2048
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46471 > 192.168.0.5:256 S ttl=42 id=8650 iplen=44 seq=2134784526 win=3072
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46471 > 192.168.0.5:80 S ttl=43 id=28491 iplen=44 seq=2134784526 win=4096
sendto in send_ip_packet: sendto(5, packet, 44, 0, 192.168.0.5, 16) => Operation not permitted
Offending packet: TCP 192.168.0.123:46471 > 192.168.0.5:443 S ttl=41 id=7756 iplen=44 seq=2134784526 win=2048
Omitting future Sendto error messages now that 10 have been shown. Use -d2 if you really want to see them.
All 1000 scanned ports on 192.168.0.5 are closed (850) or filtered (150)
MAC Address: 00:08:89:E8:04:20 (Echostar Technologies)

Nmap done: 1 IP address (1 host up) scanned in 15.44 seconds


No open ports. Darn. Is this DVR's network connection only used for firmware updates? Or is there more to use with it that we can hack into?
post #11517 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

Ugh, they're still having problems? Is there a way to check with ones have bad caps before buying electronics? Can those busted caps can be replaced easily?

I make a fair living replacing caps and the sort.... I do TV repair....
post #11518 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

Thanks all. That was weird that the non-DVR DTV Pal had its own volume control. Heh.

The Non DVR one was setup to vary the audio output so they could sell a cheaper remote (no TV control codes) with the box IIRC.......
post #11519 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by lesterl View Post

You have some Chineese Caps on the SMPS (power supply) that have failed, they may exhibit signs of failure i.e. swolen tops, leaking electrolyte, etc.... Some may just have to be ESR'ed to be diagnosed. It makes sense that you see the dish boot screen and it hangs there, PC mainboards do this with bad caps also..... Takes alot MORE wattage to drive the processor up to speed beyond the post/ boot pre screens.....

Many newer tv's are having bad chicom cap issues BTW......

I wouldnt take your words as real troubleshooting ...
Hope you know what is the word WATTAGE really mean.
Also, if telling us about bulged electrolytic capacitors what usually using for decrease noise and ripples on rails, then the passage has no sense - "It makes sense that you see the dish boot screen and it hangs there".
Hope you can use scope and watch how those rails performing during boot sequence in addition to verbal skills.
post #11520 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by P Smith View Post

When I checked these values, they were way off spec. (with the unit on).
I can tell you - first, when you're telling ... post the values, not your expression; second - those 'way off' (?) values could be a result of problems on component level of main board; third - if the device stuck in boot sequence, then the values shouldn't be "way off" or the boot will not happen.
We are at same position as a doctor and a patient - it's require physical visit, not phone/forum interaction. Or you must become the "doctor", ie learn electronics and how repair it.

I agree..... had the values written down, but don't know where I put them.
It was something like.... spec was 12v, reading = 25v, spec was 5v, reading was 15v, etc.

Don't have the time or inclination to become an electronic technician
Some day I'll find someone local with sufficient technical expertise to tell me
whether I'm correct or not, and if the boards are repairable
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