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Channel Master CM-7000PAL HD DVR - AKA Dish DTVPal - Page 8

post #211 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbyc View Post

I have had it lock up twice while using the guide; not sure but think I was just moving my fingers faster than it could think. Holding down the power button on the remote rebooted it no problem.

Bob C

I had this issue as well, using the browser buttons. I e-mailed CM support & they told me to make sure DST (daylight saving time) is off. After doing this it hasn't locked up on me to download the guide. I set it to download guide at 4AM.
post #212 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

Darn bugs!!! These newer toys are sure buggy compared to the older ones like my old CRT TV (1996) and VCR (from dotcom days).

I agree...it's all in the software! I didn't realize this when I bought my HDTV in 2005. I kept calling for repairs of 3 problems I had with the set. Toshiba replaced the mainboard and some other components all to no avail over a period of 7 months. Finally, they released a firmware upgrade that resolved the problems.

They rush new products to the market to try and beat competition without spending the time necessary to debug the software! We pay in frustration! Obviously, having to replace parts that are not faulty and paying for labor is less costly than spending time testing new products thoroughly!
post #213 of 705
Hello, all:

I have a friend who's looking for a DVR and the first thing that came to mind was this receiver. However, he lives in a poor signal area that is likely caused by multipath. His TV tuners will not receive all the signals, but a Zenith converter box will receive them.

I'm wondering if anyone here knows how the CM DVR compares with the Zenith converter box, since I've heard good things about the Channel Master converter boxes.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

- Trip
post #214 of 705
The CM7000 DVR is a Channel Master product in name only. This unit is manufactured by Echostar and is the same as the Dish Network DTVPAL DVR (Since discontinued).

I have the Dish version, and have been very pleased with its reception. It handles signals much better than my Sharp TV. The Sharp has severe reception issues at times and is unwatchable, while the DVR signal is rock solid. I am fairly close to the local transmitters, so the conditions I have are most likely due to multipath issues. The DVR has been excellent so far.

I also have two CM-7000 converter boxes, which are completely different than the CM-7000 DVR, and both have worked fine since the digital transition. They also handle the signals just fine.
post #215 of 705
The DTVPAL/CM-7000PAL DVR supposedly has the same tuner as the DTVPAL "Plus" CECB.

Based on that, I would figure that the CM-7000PAL DVR's tuner is better than average, but not quite as good as the Channel Master and Zenith CECB's.

One of the reasons the Zenith is top-rated is because of it's exceptional multipath handling.

I don't know about the later, "DTVPAL Plus", but I've had both the Zenith DTT-900 and the standard DTVPAL CECB's, and the PAL was nowhere near as good as the Zenith with multipath. Even the Channel Master, although it excels in the sensitivity department, can't match up to the Zenith for multipath handling.

I suppose the "Plus" version of the PAL could've improved upon that, though.
post #216 of 705
First, thanks to all who have posted here and in the "The Official AVS Dish DTVPal DVR Topic!". Much helpful info that I used to decide to purchase a refurb from CM Store. Also, thanks for the discount code to use there (shopcmstore).

I ordered it on April 21st (Thursday), it hadn't shipped by the following Wednesday, so I emailed them and asked what was up. I also told them to cancel the order if they could not ship it by Friday. The reply was, "Sorry for the delay, we just got some in, I will expedite and ship your order today." I was hoping that meant they would pull a new one and ship it in place of the refurb, but no, the unit I received was open box, the DVR was snug in the foam cradles but everything else, including the remote, was rattling around in the box. Also, the remote had no batteries. I received it Monday of this week and it has worked flawlessly, so far. After being on overnight it had 7-8 days of TVGOS data. The time has been correct every time I have checked it. My TVGOS comes from KTHV, ch11 in LR AR.

One question has come up so far: If if lock a station, then select "Hide Locked Channels", so the locked station doesn't show up in the guide, I cannot tune to that station. The manual says if I try to tune a locked station, I will have to enter the password. The stations I have locked are music video sub-channels. But when I turn to the channel, by keying in 01602, it doesn't ask for a password, just tunes to channel 16-1. To tune a locked channel, I have to un-lock the system. I don't need to see a schedule for continuous music videos, but would like to watch them occasionally. I searched for a solution, but found none, anyone have any ideas?
post #217 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnGa View Post

One question has come up so far: If if lock a station, then select "Hide Locked Channels", so the locked station doesn't show up in the guide, I cannot tune to that station. The manual says if I try to tune a locked station, I will have to enter the password. The stations I have locked are music video sub-channels. But when I turn to the channel, by keying in 01602, it doesn't ask for a password, just tunes to channel 16-1. To tune a locked channel, I have to un-lock the system. I don't need to see a schedule for continuous music videos, but would like to watch them occasionally. I searched for a solution, but found none, anyone have any ideas?

Once you hide a channel, it disappears from the Guide and you cannot tune it manually. To see it again (to the best of my knowledge) you must Add the channel through the menu (which includes a password). Then you can tune it and it is back in the Guide. It is basically all-or-nothing.

AJ
post #218 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by A J View Post

Once you hide a channel, it disappears from the Guide and you cannot tune it manually. To see it again (to the best of my knowledge) you must Add the channel through the menu (which includes a password). Then you can tune it and it is back in the Guide. It is basically all-or-nothing.

Has anyone actually tried to timer record to a locked channel (using a manual timer program, I assume)?
post #219 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by wajo View Post

Has anyone actually tried to timer record to a locked channel (using a manual timer program, I assume)?

That doesn't work. When you go manual (Menu/Timers/Create), you must select a channel from a list, which doesn't include hidden/locked channels. Only after you select a channel (which isn't hidden/locked) can you then input start and end times.

AJ
post #220 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by joel27nc View Post

I had this issue as well, using the browser buttons. I e-mailed CM support & they told me to make sure DST (daylight saving time) is off. After doing this it hasn't locked up on me to download the guide. I set it to download guide at 4AM.

How do you set a time for the download? I thought it just happens automatically whenever, when it has been Enabled to use the TVGOS.
post #221 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvMyDVR33 View Post

How do you set a time for the download? I thought it just happens automatically whenever, when it has been Enabled to use the TVGOS.

TVGOS updates do happen automatically. The manual suggests that enabling updates, allows you to set a time for it to update the guide, but that info is wrong. That time is when it will reboot and then go out and check for a firmware update on the internet. In fact if you enable updates, and leave the default time set to 1:00am it will actually interrupt the first TVGOS download of the night which runs from 12:56am to 1:21am.

Mark
post #222 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trip in VA View Post

Hello, all:

I have a friend who's looking for a DVR and the first thing that came to mind was this receiver. However, he lives in a poor signal area that is likely caused by multipath. His TV tuners will not receive all the signals, but a Zenith converter box will receive them.

I'm wondering if anyone here knows how the CM DVR compares with the Zenith converter box, since I've heard good things about the Channel Master converter boxes.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

- Trip

I live in the DC area. It all depends on your antenna and line of sight. I use an amplified signal roof antenna even though I live along the DC Beltway (due to nearby buildings interfering with line of sight Your antenna should be strong on the UHF side (only a couple of stations broadcast VHF and they are in the high band VHF).
post #223 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvMyDVR33 View Post
How do you set a time for the download? I thought it just happens automatically whenever, when it has been Enabled to use the TVGOS.
I think it's preset to 1AM. I changed mine to 4AM.
post #224 of 705
I have this CM device hooked up to an antenna and am very happy with the picture and mostly with the functionality. One big problem though. There seems to be no way to record only a specific program like TiVo season pass. If I want to record American Idol, for example, it will record M-F at the same time, like an old VHS recorder. Am I missing something? I have not updated the software since I bought it in January as it is not on my net yet.
post #225 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by joel27nc View Post

I think it's preset to 1AM. I changed mine to 4AM.

Look up a few posts from this and see what mabuttra replied to me. The update is for firmware, NOT the guide, therefore it should be disabled as there is not going to be new firmware.
post #226 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike734 View Post

I have this CM device hooked up to an antenna and am very happy with the picture and mostly with the functionality. One big problem though. There seems to be no way to record only a specific program like TiVo season pass. If I want to record American Idol, for example, it will record M-F at the same time, like an old VHS recorder. Am I missing something? I have not updated the software since I bought it in January as it is not on my net yet.

You're not missing anything -- the unit is doing what it's supposed to do. If you want name-based recording, you need to buy a DVR that has a monthly subscription to a TV guide like TiVo does. Because this DVR has no monthly fee, it performs time-based recording (like a VCR) and not name-based recording. While it would be possible to use TVGOS information to do name-based recording, the unit has not been designed to do that, and it's unlikely that such a functionality will ever be added.
post #227 of 705
That's too bad and a major shortcoming. But, I have enjoyed a few unexpected episodes of "Kitchen Nightmares," so I've got that going for me...
post #228 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post

You're not missing anything -- the unit is doing what it's supposed to do. If you want name-based recording, you need to buy a DVR that has a monthly subscription to a TV guide like TiVo does. Because this DVR has no monthly fee, it performs time-based recording (like a VCR) and not name-based recording. While it would be possible to use TVGOS information to do name-based recording, the unit has not been designed to do that, and it's unlikely that such a functionality will ever be added.

How come there are no non-subscription DVRs that can do name-based recordings? I always avoided those subscription ones.
post #229 of 705
"I'm wondering if anyone here knows how the CM DVR compares with the Zenith converter box, since I've heard good things about the Channel Master converter boxes.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

- Trip"
I have both Zenith and DTV Pal DVR in Roanoke mkt (Altavista) Bothh work well (good)
I can see no diferance.
Bernieoc
post #230 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post

How come there are no non-subscription DVRs that can do name-based recordings? I always avoided those subscription ones.

TiVo is non-subscription if you pre-pay up front.
post #231 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

TiVo is non-subscription if you pre-pay up front.

Yeah, but very expensive though when I last checked years ago. Or did the prices fall recently? :/
post #232 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
TiVo is non-subscription if you pre-pay up front.
The fact that you can pre-pay doesn't change the fact that you are still being charged, unfortunately.

Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post
How come there are no non-subscription DVRs that can do name-based recordings? I always avoided those subscription ones.
I suppose there are several possible reasons for this. One of them is that, to my knowledge, TiVo has several DVR patents in the United States which prevent other companies from making competing DVRs. If other companies try, TiVo will sue them. TiVo and Dish Network recently reached a DVR settlement on this very subject.

Another potential reason is that the monthly fee is the only way for TiVo to make money, and even though they're charging that fee, TiVo is still doing very poorly financially. The consumer electronics field has developed so quickly that people expect to pay unrealistically low prices for things, and the only way companies can still make money by selling gadgets is to subsidize the hardware cost by making people pay extra fees after the fact. That's why you can buy an expensive cell phone for less than $100; the carrier loses money when selling you the phone, but they make up the loss by making you pay through the nose for your coverage and data plans. Without the contract, you'd need to pay three times more for the same phone.

In the same way, a DVR has to have relatively decent hardware to do what it needs to do, since HD content requires quite a bit of processing power to decode during playback. I would imagine that TiVo sells each DVR unit at a substantial loss, but they recoup most of that loss through the monthly fee. Any company wanting to sell an OTA DVR without a monthly fee would have to charge what consumers would consider a ridiculous price, because they would have to make all their money selling the hardware, which is hard to do. If you combine the economic disincentives with the specter of litigation from TiVo, it's not very surprising that there's essentially one DVR maker in the United States.

On a side note, a friend of mine in the UK told me that TiVo tried to pass their "monthly fee for something that should be free" system there, and they essentially got laughed out of the market, because nobody would pay a recurring fee to record TV shows there. Unlike the US, Europe has a wide variety of DVRs available that have no monthly fees. Unfortunately, since Europe uses DVB and the US uses ATSC, you can't import a European DVR for use in the United States.

I find it surprising that people find it such a hassle to have to "set the timer" to record their programs. To me, time-based recording is just fine, because I'm not going to pay a fee every month for TiVo to read the TV guide for me. I'm perfectly capable of doing it myself, and while it would be nice to have an OTA DVR that was smart enough to do name-based recording from PSIP or TVGOS information, I don't think it's worth paying such a large amount of money for a minor feature.
post #233 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post
...I find it surprising that people find it such a hassle to have to "set the timer" to record their programs. To me, time-based recording is just fine, because I'm not going to pay a fee every month for TiVo to read the TV guide for me. I'm perfectly capable of doing it myself, and while it would be nice to have an OTA DVR that was smart enough to do name-based recording from PSIP or TVGOS information, I don't think it's worth paying such a large amount of money for a minor feature.
Ditto. I have been using VCRs and OTA feeds for most of my life. I am cheap.
post #234 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by phildaant View Post
Yeah, but very expensive though when I last checked years ago.
Yes, but you get what you pay for. Anyway, my post was in response to your lament as to why there are no fee-less, name-based OTA DVRs.
Answer = There is. Maybe not at your price-point, but nonetheless there is one.
post #235 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
Yes, but you get what you pay for. Anyway, my post was in response to your lament as to why there are no fee-less, name-based OTA DVRs.
Answer = There is. Maybe not at your price-point, but nonetheless there is one.
Thanks.
post #236 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post
The fact that you can pre-pay doesn't change the fact that you are still being charged, unfortunately.
I'm sorry, your supposed objection doesn't make sense. TiVo charges a simple purchase price for their equipment, after which there are no recurring fees. Yes it may be higher than you wish to pay, but such is the cost for a high-end unit with a very rich feature set that works with total reliability. You get what you pay for.

The monthly subscription model is a choice the buyer can make who doesn't want to pay the full price of the unit up front. It's the buyers choice whether to finance the purchase by adopting a subscription model or not. The TiVo is inherently fee-less.
post #237 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
Yes, but you get what you pay for. Anyway, my post was in response to your lament as to why there are no fee-less, name-based OTA DVRs.
Answer = There is. Maybe not at your price-point, but nonetheless there is one.
That's not really true. Your argument is like saying a car is free if you pay cash in full at the dealership instead of taking out a loan. It may be cheaper if you pay in full at the beginning, but you still had to pay all the money, so it's hardly "fee-less". The fee just isn't recurring if you pay it all initially.
post #238 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleron Ives View Post
That's not really true. Your argument is like saying a car is free if you pay cash in full at the dealership instead of taking out a loan. It may be cheaper if you pay in full at the beginning, but you still had to pay all the money, so it's hardly "fee-less". The fee just isn't recurring if you pay it all initially.
You're just spouting nonsense. How is your example different from buying anything at all, including a Pal DVR.
post #239 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

You're just spouting nonsense. How is your example different from buying anything at all, including a Pal DVR.

I agree. Part of the cost of the DTVPal is for the software development that went into creating the TV guide. That cost just isn't as obvious as the TIVO fees.

Also there is at least one name based TVGOS driven recorder. The Sony DHG-HDD250/500. However, on ebay they are more expensive than the DTVPal/CM-7000Pal.

Mark
post #240 of 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

You're just spouting nonsense. How is your example different from buying anything at all, including a Pal DVR.

You said that TiVo offers a fee-less DVR because you can pay the whole cost up front, but that "whole cost" isn't just for the DVR itself.

The cost of a TiVo is the price of the DVR hardware itself + a fee for the right to access TiVo's TV guide. You have the option of paying a monthly fee for the TV guide, or you can pay a lump sum when you buy the DVR to get "lifetime" access to the TV guide. Some people may save money by paying the one-time fee if they plan to use the TiVo for a long time. If the monthly TV guide fee is say $15 and you use the TiVo unit for 3 years, you would pay $540 in TV guide fees. If you buy the "lifetime" TV guide access, you might only pay $300 extra, and thus you'd save some money. You're still paying for the TV guide either way, so saying that the "lifetime" subscription option is the same as getting a fee-less TiVo box isn't true. You do avoid the monthly fee, but you spent quite a bit of money on the TV guide in either case.

When you buy a Dish DTVPal/CM 7000-Pal, you pay for the DVR hardware/software itself, and nothing else. There's a substantial difference between that and the payment structure for TiVo. If you don't pay the monthly TV guide fee for TiVo and you don't buy the "lifetime" subscription either, your TiVo box is almost entirely useless. I've asked before if you can use a TiVo without the subscription like a VCR and do time-based recording, and everyone I've asked has said you can't. Either they're wrong, or newer TiVo boxes work differently than old ones.

Also, the "lifetime" access has historically been for the lifetime of the TiVo box, not for your lifetime. If your unit dies or you want to get a new one with more features or tuners, you may have to pay TiVo again to either transfer the subscription to a new box or to buy an entirely new "lifetime" subscription. I'm not sure what their current policy is.

The base price of a Dish DTVPal/CM 7000-Pal may be higher than TiVo since TiVo can afford to sell the hardware at a loss and make up the difference with TV guide fees (either through "lifetime" or monthly options), but the actual cost of a TiVo depends on how long you want access to the TV guide, hence why I said it is not a "fee-less" DVR. If I failed to make myself clear before, I apologize. I don't think this is "spouting nonsense", but perhaps my information is incorrect, in which case I apologize for that as well.
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