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Centronics ZAT 502 HD / RTC DTA1100HD / Digiwave DTV5000HD - Page 2

post #31 of 481
What happened to the images that douglas-b posted?
Did he delete them or did photobucket delete them?
post #32 of 481
There is a threat that claims this device can also do QAM tuning. Is that true?
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=179095
post #33 of 481
I just ordered one of these...will post my results once I have received it & hooked it up.
post #34 of 481
Quote:


There is a threat that claims this device can also do QAM tuning. Is that true?

Yes, it true for the clear cable QAM only---not all QAM.
When I connected my 502 to Cox I got about 6 or 8 HD signals that I could also get OTA plus a few shopping and misc ones. The good stuff stays encrypted to encourage the customer to upgrade to digital service.
post #35 of 481
Well, sure, for encrypted QAM, a tuner would have to also have a CableCard slot. There isn't such a digital tuner of the non-DVR variety; and, AFAIK, there never has been one. Clear-QAM is great for those who wish to get just local channels with cable, rather than an antenna.
post #36 of 481
Centronics doesn't list QAM in the online specs, and hasn't posted the manual online, so I researched it. Others had said they verified QAM from Centronics and other vendors, as well as the box, but nobody had used it. It sounded like it has an enabled QAM tuner, so, I decided to buy one.

I just got the 502, I haven't had a chance to try it yet. The box and manual specs. indeed list one Modulation mode as 64/256 QAM. Also listed are the Cable Frequencies of 57 MHz to 860 MHz / Cable Channels 2-135. The manual page on channel scanning mentions a choice of Cable.

Now, finally, I read today that someone is actually using QAM. I wish this info. was posted before, it would have saved me a lot of time and effort researching, oh well.
post #37 of 481
Quote:
Originally Posted by QZ1 View Post

Centronics doesn't list QAM in the online specs, and hasn't posted the manual online, so I researched it. Others had said they verified QAM from Centronics and other vendors, as well as the box, but nobody had used it. It sounded like it has an enabled QAM tuner, so, I decided to buy one.

I just got the 502, I haven't had a chance to try it yet.

Let us know how QAM works.
post #38 of 481
This unit weights more than a piece of bread like other $40 gov't approved tuners....which feels a bit like quality. The remote feels solid and the unit looks good.

The signal quality is excellent. I am feeding it a signal from an attic antenna and the digital signal is stunning.

The downside is that when you change channels only the number is shown (not the station callsign i.e. 25.1 WABC). It doesn't appear to have a guide although it shows a mini-guide for the channel you are on (shows for the next 4 hours).

Does well pulling in the digital signals and does it speedily showing the MHz it dials in on.

The audio output can be set for PCM mode if you wish to allow your receiver to decode and it supports up to Dolby 5.1.

For $80 or so...this is the best ATSC tuner with an HDMI jack I could find (in stock & for sale).
post #39 of 481
Thread Starter 
Images fixed on first page...
post #40 of 481
douglas-b:
Thanks for posting the screen shots again. They will help the people considering purchase.

It was the image of the two signal bars that did it for me.

As far as I can tell, the manual doesn't mention or show dual signal bars. It does, however, mention them separately: On page 6 it says "Signal quality of current channels" for the remote control SIGNAL button. When you press that button the two bars are displayed. On page 7 it says "Your receiver is equipped with a signal strength indicator to facilitate the optimum adjustment of the antenna."

Page 16 claims that the remote has some limited learning capability to add 5 functions for controlling the TV. I haven't tried it yet.

The model number is not on the outside of the box that it came in, only on a sticker on the bottom of the unit.
post #41 of 481
Quote:
Originally Posted by JC480 View Post

This unit weights more than a piece of bread like other $40 gov't approved tuners....which feels a bit like quality.

This unit is not eligible for the digital converter coupon, because it has HD video and Digital audio (Dolby Digital?) output; either one disqualifies it.
post #42 of 481
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

Let us know how QAM works.

I will. I should be able to test it this weekend.
post #43 of 481
Ken H, the price of the 502 listed in the HD STB Synopsis should be updated. I assume, the 502 used to be, indeed, listed at $70; however, the manufacturer, Centronics, currently lists it at $85.50.
post #44 of 481




Same tuner (Samsung DTVS22D) as in the Apex DT502 and the Sunkey SK-801ATSC according to wiki:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_CECB_units

I made the file size a little larger (130 and 171 KB) than usual for the detail.
post #45 of 481
After connecting to Cox I picked up the following 21 channels with autoscan:

3.1 WTKR-DT
4.1
7.1 WGNT-DT
10.1 WAVY-HD
13.1 WVEC-DT
15.1 WHRO-Hi
15.2 WHRO World
15.3 Kids
15.5 VTC
33.1 WTVZ-HD
43.1 WVBT-HD
49.1 picked up on scan but didn't decode---screen says "WAITING"
I was able to pick up 49.1-49.4 OTA/8vsb
86.33529 (the signal bar gives the long number but
86.33532 the channel display on the front says 86.03 for these)
86.33559
86.33565
93.33525 ditto 93.03
93.33578
94.33468 ditto 94.03
94.33857
114.11

The scan screen said total "channels found 17." Silicondust.com lists 50 clear QAM for me; Cox has made some changes.
The 21 vs 17 count doesn't agree probably because of the way subchannels are counted OTA vs cable. The signals with a virtual number are pretty much what I get OTA with an antenna except the box is sensitive enough to get a few additional weak ones.

My little 8" LCD TV that does NTSC/ATSC/clear QAM didn't pick up 49.1 on cable either. Must be Cox. It also didn't pick up 3.1 for some reason.
post #46 of 481
Thanks for posting the pics, rabbit73.
The circuit board looks a lot cleaner than the 501. The little add-on boards with capacitors are gone.
post #47 of 481
Too bad... it seems like something you'd think every manufacturer of these boxes would include... simple timers not even depending on tv/psip guides for those who need to record a program while away... shame...
post #48 of 481
This receiver has been working out well for me.

As indicated in a previous post, you need an optical cable IN ADDITION to your HDMI cable for full Dolby Digital sound. Prior to the optical cable installation, I received L/R only.

Post optical cable, my receiver acknowledged the Digital Signal and my subwoofer was firing happily.

The video quality (on my Pioneer Kuro) is absolutely stunning. Very pleased with this box.
post #49 of 481
I got mine today, but haven't tested it yet. Glad to hear it's working out well for others. Centronics says it's now OOS again.

On a side note, I was puzzled to find PC World claiming the ZAT502 is a CECB:
"...if your amplifier has an S/PDIF digital audio input, consider investing in a DTV converter that has the corresponding digital audio output. Such models are generally more expensive; one example is the $80 Centronics ZAT502 HD, which is eligible for the $40 NTIA coupon."
LINK
post #50 of 481
Has anyone noticed whether the ZAT 502 HD outputs an anamorphic video signal through the S-Video port? That could be a major selling point to those of us with older analog tuner DVRs. My Motorola cable box only does letterboxed video via the S-Video output so recordings are a little squished.

Thanks,
Mike
post #51 of 481
Quote:
Originally Posted by zenoicus View Post

I got mine today, but haven't tested it yet. Glad to hear it's working out well for others. Centronics says it's now OOS again.

I didn't get a chance to fully test my 502 box, I will reporting on QAM soon, hopefully, as I promised.

Quote:


On a side note, I was puzzled to find PC World claiming the ZAT502 is a CECB: "...if your amplifier has an S/PDIF digital audio input, consider investing in a DTV converter that has the corresponding digital audio output. Such models are generally more expensive; one example is the $80 Centronics ZAT502 HD, which is eligible for the $40 NTIA coupon."

Yes, I read that, as well, but, it is incorrect. A silly mistake by them, they should know that boxes with HD video and/or DD audio don't qualify.
post #52 of 481
douglas-b & rabbit73:

Now that you have had the ZAT 502 HD for a while, are you still happy with it? I'm looking to buy for my 50" HD ready monitor and am really interested in your feedback. Anyone else have experiences after living with the box for a while?

Thanks!
post #53 of 481
Quote:
Originally Posted by daveannal View Post

douglas-b & rabbit73:

Now that you have had the ZAT 502 HD for a while, are you still happy with it? I'm looking to buy for my 50" HD ready monitor and am really interested in your feedback. Anyone else have experiences after living with the box for a while?

Thanks!

I love mine. I wish it had a master "guide" for all the channels I can scroll through. But lacking that, it's a great box...and one of the few that has an HDMI port out.

The video signal is stunning and the Dolby 5.1 comes through beautifully.
post #54 of 481
Thanks JC480! Initial reviews are great but seeing how people like the products after a break in period are helpful, too.

-dma
post #55 of 481
hi there who sold you that sat502hd,
post #56 of 481
Centronics
post #57 of 481
centronics is on backorder and dont even know when they will be geting any.
post #58 of 481
I finally got a chance to fully test the 502.

I knew about the HDMI only passing PCM audio.
(Although, at first, I forgot I had read it, so I wasted too much time testing, until I thought to look at this thread again.)

Anyway, so then, I connected an Optical cable, and assigned it with the AVR, but I still was only get PCM.
So, Then, I un-assign HDMI, and assign Component, (which I had connected at the same time as Optical, just in case.)
So, then the combo of Component and Optical gives me AC3 audio.

Has anyone been able to use the HDMI video with Optical audio?
It was implied, but not stated.
I was able to do this with my DVR and AVR, (but the TV/CBL label, when assigned to any HDMI input on the AVR, wasn't passing HDMI sound, so maybe that is why Optical worked).
If others have this working, I need to try this with the DVR and AVR and another input label, to see if the AVR is the issue or not.

However, with Optical, the box volume/mute doesn't work; (it just appears w/o effect).
Testing again, with HDMI, volume still works, so it is the Optical that apparently disables it.
Is anyone using the box remote to control Optical audio?

If this a quirk, this makes one need to use the AVR remote, or at least the AVR codes.
I don't know if the box remote can be control the AVR, but certainly my URC univ. remote can, and I will be using the URC, anyway.

The problem is that when using the AVR's mute, it leaves 'MUTING' on the screen.
I have to see if I can change that; if not, it could cause burn-in on the plasma I will be getting.
Normally, when I use volume pass-through, I always change the mute function back to the source device.
Since, it doesn't work it this case, I will have to just reduce the volume a lot instead of muting.

I do indeed get all of the HD Locals via QAM, however, no channel info. and no virtual channel mapping; the latter would be nice.
Is anyone getting virtual channel mapping with QAM?

Without it, I know that if a channel(s) moves to a frequency not previously scanned, I would have to rescan.
At least, though, supposedly, the majors stay in the same range, so I could find one or more moved channels easily.
If the whole range moves, then find one channel, and the rest are easy.
I hear they move them infrequently, so hopeully, it isn't that annoying.

Overall, I like the 502, the A/V quality is excellent.
post #59 of 481
Quote:
Originally Posted by QZ1 View Post

Has anyone been able to use the HDMI video with Optical audio?
It was implied, but not stated.

Yes, I am doing just that through my Onkyo TX-SR576. The ZAT-502 is connected to the AVR via HDMI to HDMI-2 and TOSlink to Optical-2.

In the AVR Setup, I assigned HDMI-2 as the Input for Cable/Sat and Optical-2 as the Digital Audio for Cable/Sat. The 576 allows me to toggle between HDMI audio (PCM only) and Optical audio (AC3) via a Digital Input button.

Volume / mute controls for my ZAT-502 do not operate on the optical output just as you described.
post #60 of 481
I should have known the answer to that question, is to assign it to TV/CBL on my AVR, and it should work. I know why I didn't, (I used SAT instead, and renamed it to ATSC/QAM), because at first, I was expecting to use the audio portion of HDMI, so I knew not to use TV/CBL. Then I remembered, in order to get AC3, I needed to connect Optical, but it didn't work, of course. I didn't think to change the source assignment to TV/CBL; I'll see if that works.

I don't recall a Digital Input Button on my Denon 3808, but I will check, as I don't get audio on the TV/CBL assignment. I don't think I ever was, because when I lost audio on my DVR, I am almost sure it was because I changed assignments; and no a/v comp. gets audio with TV/CBL on my AVR.
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