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The Official AVS Dish DTVPal DVR Topic! - Page 593

post #17761 of 18096
Guess you're using a "universal" remote.

Dish remotes are a bit of a PITA in that they combine functions differently than most others. On the Pal's OEM remote, or most Dish remotes, the Channel up/down buttons are the same as the cursor up/down buttons; and Dish adds the Page up/down functions as separate buttons.

Most universal remotes have separate buttons for channel up/down and cursor up/down, but don't have a page up/down function. How that maps when you use a Dish remote code is up to the manufacturer of the universal remote; many just map both the channel up/down and cursor up/down to the same functions, leaving you with no buttons at all for the page up/down functions.

So what to do? Well, I suppose you could do a factory defaults reset, but that's a bit of the PITA itself; the process rescans your channels and wipes out all your recording timers. (But it will keep your recorded shows, at least.)

If you can wait a few days, a cheap, easy solution could be just buying a Dish remote. Amazon always seems to have the Dish 20.1 learning remotes on sale; they make great replacements for the Pal's OEM remote.
post #17762 of 18096
It has been awhile since I've been here let alone posted. My two palDVRs had been working fine until one started going south a few days ago. I bought my first one (the PAL unit) in the first January they became available (for the regular price at the time) and the second from Sears about a year later for $199, both running the last firmware update, F208. My family and I have enjoyed them ever since (glitches and all). We got used to the failure to record every now and then and the time glitches twice a year during the time changes. When things got bad, I would do a hard reset and they would always work better.

Until last week. I was switching the Sears unit to new TV. It was necessary to unplug it for the shortest few minutes, When I hooked it back up I expected it to come back like after a power outage but it came up like it did when it was new - in the setup wizard. And it will not find any services when searching for channels. I cycled through that for a day or so, jiggling and removing the antenna as it searched but it would either not find anything or it would go blank with both LEDs lit. It stays like this more and more when I plug it in but every now and then it goes through the channel setup again. It will not respond to the remote at all. I checked it with the antenna working my other unit, which is working fine, but same result. It is not my reception. I suspect it might be one or both tuners have failed if it is not a software issue.

I finally opened it up and disconnected the HDD, plugged it in and got the drive error message (hoping to interrupt a software issue and get back control). I unplugged it, reconnected the HDD and plugged it back in. It comes on back with the red LED lit brightly and the green LED dimly lit. After a couple of seconds the green one goes bright like the red and still a blank screen again. Now when I disconnect the HDD its behavior doesn't change: LEDs lit, green brightens after a few seconds and no screen until I unplug it. I am hoping that this is intermittent and I will get back to the channel search when I wait and plug it in but don't know what I will do then. I took these recovery steps based on info found here although I haven't gone through everything in the last year or so. My older original PAL unit is still going strong - go figure. I'm hoping that someone can provide me with the next step toward a solution or I'll be getting a DVR+ to replace it since I believe in fate!
post #17763 of 18096
ucmerick, have you tried rebooting with the antenna disconnected? I had a similar situation about two months back where mine was practically dead and wouldn't respond to the remote. On a whim, I installed a new hard drive and rebooted the unit without the antenna connected. I had to do it a couple times but finally got a screen where the remote would work. I reset to factory defaults and it's been fine ever since. I'm still not sure if it was the hard drive or something got corrupted as I wasn't brave enough to experiment with the old drive once I got it working.
post #17764 of 18096
Paul210,

My PAL unit is operating normally now! After posting, I continued to plug and unplug it after varying unplugged intervals. Whenever it rebooted normally and went into the setup wizard it seemed that the tuner (channel setup search function?) was super sensitive to the antenna input because if it was in the setup wizard service search and I touched the antenna it would go blank on me. (I would have remote on the setup screen intermittently too.) I had started looking at signal strength in the antenna point function and found that either the signals had strength or everything was zero, all or nothing. It appeared to me that it might not be the tuner(s) itself. I was hoping it was sensitivity caused by a software issue so I kept jiggling the antenna, trying with different connectors: slip on, screw on, ones with thick or thin wires. Nothing was working. All combinations or no antenna just didn't get through the channel search and every time I tried to connect or disconnect the antenna during the search it aborted/blanked out. I just got the LEDs and a blank screen. At that point, I used a splitter to lower the strength some since I am consistently in the high 90s in strength in LA on a lot of channels. After now going through the previous jiggling for many attempts, it started finding channels but would still abort before finishing the search. Then one time it aborted to a green vertically striped pattern. Something different (this wasn't insanity)! The next time it made it through the service search. It only found about half of my expected channels but I did have remote control upon completion. I immediately did a factory reset, removed the splitter and reran the setup wizard. It found all my channels and is working as expected. Maybe I waited too long between factory resets since I was resetting both units after every time change but this year I didn't do it in April and was intending to do it before the end of the holiday. I will do it regularly now for both. It now seems the best feature they left off this unit was a hard reset button; unplugging doesn't seem to be an adequate substitute with respect to the multitude of unforeseen software glitches. Regardless, I'm getting a DVR+. I wouldn't be surprised if they eventually go OEM with that unit. Its form factor is consistent with a plug-in module on the larger TVs initially. With power, antenna, web-connectivity, remote and output integration, in addition to the huge scale factor possible, this type of unit's cost of inclusion in some form could eventually be insignificant to the price of any TV.
post #17765 of 18096
Congratulations! smile.gif
post #17766 of 18096
Sounds like the firmware was jacking with the tuner's AGC somehow. Weird. Glad you got it working.

A recessed "factory defaults reset" button sounds like a great idea! A sensible "best practice" that (unfortunately) nobody will likely follow frown.gif

Interesting speculation about building the DVR+ into TVs in the future. It'd be easy enough since it's basically just a circuit board in a case. You might consider cross-posting that idea on the DVR+ forum and see how they react.
post #17767 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by ucmerick View Post

Paul210,

My PAL unit is operating normally now! ....
you got lucky this time ! smile.gif
post #17768 of 18096
My new year's resolution . . .

This is the year I am FINALLY going to be brave, open up my trusty PAL and blow it out!!!

(Anybody in the Austin area who would be willing to help out this first-timer?)
Edited by golinux - 1/2/14 at 10:27am
post #17769 of 18096
Not sure if someone did remark that, but anyway... after many years of using, troubleshooting and fixing, I come to interesting tidbit: channel numbers are in 70s.

Have you seen these ?

If yes, that means: DVR has found duplicate virtual channels numbers on different frequencies and then assigned the 70s number regardless of PSIP data.
In Bay Area I got ch 70, 71 and 72 using 1/4 pole type antenna [360 degree diagram].
post #17770 of 18096
You'd really never noticed that before, P Smith?  When the unit detects conflicitng virtual channel numbers, it bumps one channel or the other into the 70's.  Back when we had guide info from Rovi, that would mean only PSIP for the channel that lost the fight for its virtual channel number and got kicked upstairs, since the info from Rovi was matched up by virtual channel number.
post #17771 of 18096
never thought about the 70s as duplicates smile.gif
post #17772 of 18096
In my case, it is usually caused by heavy Tropo. So when I get a dupe of say. ch. 2.1 from Miami show up in the 70s I know right away to delete it.
post #17773 of 18096
Me too. I've seen the 70s channels. When the Pal receives another channel from atmospheric conditions with the same channel number as a local, it will put it at 70 and above. I go into menus to lock them out, then delete them. Seems to keep the same ones from reappearing.
post #17774 of 18096
I just rescanned and get 151 locked channels, none above 69, most with signal strength in 90s. I'm in the West SFV about 35 miles SW of Mt. Wilson using a 30 year old VHF/UHF directional antenna pointed at it ("flying" away). Great if you like infomercials - I hide more channels than not.
post #17775 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by ucmerick View Post

I just rescanned and get 151 locked channels, none above 69, most with signal strength in 90s. I'm in the West SFV about 35 miles SW of Mt. Wilson using a 30 year old VHF/UHF directional antenna pointed at it ("flying" away). Great if you like infomercials - I hide more channels than not.
I am about 20 miles SE of Mt. Wilson and using a RCA ANT751 antenna indoor in my upstair room closet. I get about 115 channels (wished it would tell me how many I currently have!). I did not see anything above 69 as well from previous scans (months ago). No new detected channels since then too. I never hid mine. I just leave them in. Haha. Yeah, too many foreign and infommercial channels!
Edited by phildaant - 1/2/14 at 8:16pm
post #17776 of 18096
I've gone back and forth between hiding unwanted channels and deleting them. One reason for hiding them is that if you delete them, they may come back! But that seems to be rare. In my case it's only happened with channels I receive only rarely, such as distant stations coming in via tropo. Channels that are always there never seem to come back if I delete them.

Another reason for hiding them is for convenience in case you change your mind and decide you want them back. If a channel changes formats (say, from infomercials or color bars to something worth watching), you can just unhide it, rather than rescanning the RF channel, thus bringing back maybe 3 other unwanted subchannels along with the one you wanted, then having to delete the other 3 again.

So, maybe hide the channels from 100 miles away, and the ones you aren't sure about; and delete the rest?
post #17777 of 18096
I think it comes back because your deleting a default channel number given temporarily because the channel number assigned to that frequency is occupied. A full rescan will always correct the two channel changes that have occurred in the channel line up but it will delete your timers. I guess you could find the matching frequency of the newly added 7X channel in your existing channel line up and delete that channel and the 7X one, but you might have to reacquire the new channel to have it acquired at its correct channel number because you deleted it with the old assigned frequency. I've haven't tried it yet to verify.
post #17778 of 18096
70s channels means - it's same virtual channels receiving from other station on different freq
post #17779 of 18096
Perhaps I'm in the minority, but I prefer tuners that don't scan for new channels on their own. If I delete a channel, I want it to stay gone, and it's easiest to achieve that if channel scans only occur when I elect to perform them myself.
post #17780 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post

Perhaps I'm in the minority, but I prefer tuners that don't scan for new channels on their own. If I delete a channel, I want it to stay gone, and it's easiest to achieve that if channel scans only occur when I elect to perform them myself.
the feature came from a new world of constant changes in OTA digital era ; too many of them happening sporadically ... new stations, new sub-channels, names , virtual numbers, etc
post #17781 of 18096
Well, it worked for a few days anyways! But it apparently has a failed tuner(s). It started locking up and a soft reset would get it working, But after two days it has lost all the channels and now shows all channels with a signal strength of 143 with the green strength bar going off the right of the display even when the antenna is not connected. A channel scan quickly goes through in one second with nothing found. And there are regular multi-colored screen glitches between now visibly slower screen transitions that look like scrambled signals. I don't see any indication that it could function again without repair so I am declaring it dead. It was a refurbished unit bought at Sears for $199 that lasted 3 years so I got good value out of it. I bought my remaining original Dish unit 5 years ago this month!
post #17782 of 18096
I recall I fixed one with such issue (that time the SS value goes to ten thousands range eg 16 bit word), it was AMD T316 demod chip ...
post #17783 of 18096
P Smith have you seen any power supply capacitors fail in these? Interesting about the demod chip. Thanks!
post #17784 of 18096
yes, saw/fixed a couple with bulged electrolytic capacitor
post #17785 of 18096
Not on topic - have been on AVS forums for years with 'immediate notification'. Switched to Mozilla Firefox and no loner get notifications.
If you know the answer - great - if not where can I find out what the problem is?
post #17786 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by bernieoc View Post

Not on topic - have been on AVS forums for years with 'immediate notification'. Switched to Mozilla Firefox and no loner get notifications.
If you know the answer - great - if not where can I find out what the problem is?

Go here to post about your issue . . .
post #17787 of 18096
Quote:
Originally Posted by bernieoc View Post

...h 'immediate notification'. ...?
Did you click the little box and select the right dropdown?
post #17788 of 18096
notification problem solved
turns out my mail provider 'bounced' some messages and that put me in the 'don't send anymore catagory.
The powers that be reset me to ok and i am now receiving notice
Thank you
post #17789 of 18096
I updated my previous post regarding daisy-chaining an inexpensive Homeworx in front of the DTVPal to record a third show at once. Mediasonic has improved the RF loop-through function on the Homeworx.
post #17790 of 18096
Guys, you know me, what I'm offer here...

I don't want to violate forum rules or be a target for DVR+'s shills ...

But, just in case, if you need my help ... take in consideration the my post http://www.avsforum.com/t/1481183/channel-master-dvr-owners-thread/1320#post_24227014

Sure, you could catch me in Europe then, but the shipping cost eek.gif
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