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DirecTV "Whole Home" DVR Questions

post #1 of 240
Thread Starter 
Im looking at getting DirecTV.

They now offer a "whole home" DVR system. Questions:

If I get this option, can I still pause, FF and RW on the non DVR HD boxes? (this is more important to me than full program recording, in every room)

The "internet TV" option is a mandatory $25 to "professionally" install for the whole home option but is free for normal HD DVR boxes (just plug in ethernet with internet) Why is this? Whats different that users cant do this on their own?

If I do pay the $25 for a "professional" install of internet TV, will the tech pull the ethernet from my router to my box? (ie under the house in crawl space)

After the 1st or 2nd "free" options, why do I have to pay for a HD DVR in addition to a monthly fee? Shouldnt it be one or the other? (ie if I want 2x HD DVR's the second one is $100 plus a $10 monthly fee)

Thanks for any feed back.
post #2 of 240
You can FF or Rew on the non DVR receivers if you are watching a stream from a DVR, not if you're watching live TV.

It sounds like the $25 is for a DECA hookup for your router and you would need to be hooked up to your receivers with DECA as well. That will cost considerably more.

If you decide to go that way it is a really good set up. The problem is the CSRs know very little about how to order these and most installers have never set one up.

I use cat-5 from my receivers to a switch for multi-room viewing and it works pretty well. The switch connects to the router for Video on Demand. I will eventually switch over to DECA when they get it all sorted out. They are charging current subs $150 to install it and only $100 if you have been with them for a while. If you use your own ethernet set up it only costs $3 per month with no set up fee.
post #3 of 240
Actually I think almost all new installs are being done with H24 and HR24 receivers as long as they have them in stock. If not I believe they will install older units with DECA adapters for free as long as you order MRV as part of the initial order (they don't charge new customers the $99+$49 fee they charge existing customers).

It does sound like they are charging them $25 for the single broadband DECA unit to hook up to their home network (this is what the original poster is talking about). The installers are supposed to run RG6 cable to the router and then they will install the broadband DECA adapter and use a short patch cable to hook it up to your router. However, this RG6 run is like any other cable run they do, they may charge you extra for fishing the cable through walls or crawling around in a crawlspace/attic to run the cable. The free install only covers running the cable around the outside of the house and drilling it through 1 wall to get it into the room.

If the installer does not have a broadband DECA unit with him (they still aren't available in all areas I think) they can use a standard DECA unit with a 18volt power inserter they made for the DECA units or a 21volt power inserter from a SWM LNB if they don't have one of those. DO NOT let them try to just run a patch cable from your HD-DVR to the router as this is not supported and can cause problems (for some reason the techs seem to be doing this even though engineering has said it is a bad idea).

Hope this helps.

If you have any more questions I would suggest checking out the DirecTV Connected Home forum over at DBSTalk.com.
http://www.dbstalk.com/forumdisplay.php?f=137
post #4 of 240
Thread Starter 
Awesome, thank you both so much for the replies!

Time to read up on DECA hookups etc.
post #5 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by hardware_failure View Post

Awesome, thank you both so much for the replies!

Time to read up on DECA hookups etc.

Good luck!
post #6 of 240
DECA basically allows them to do ethernet over the existing coax feeding your Directv receiver. They install a device at the receiver and one at your router to tie the coax into your internet access.

This only works when you have an SWM set up in the house also.
post #7 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by joed32 View Post

It sounds like the $25 is for a DECA hookup for your router and you would need to be hooked up to your receivers with DECA as well. That will cost considerably more.

If you decide to go that way it is a really good set up. The problem is the CSRs know very little about how to order these and most installers have never set one up.

I use cat-5 from my receivers to a switch for multi-room viewing and it works pretty well. The switch connects to the router for Video on Demand. I will eventually switch over to DECA when they get it all sorted out. They are charging current subs $150 to install it and only $100 if you have been with them for a while. If you use your own ethernet set up it only costs $3 per month with no set up fee.

OK, I just read my first article about this Whole Home service this morning, called DTV to see about getting setup, and was told that in addition to the $3/month I'd have to pay $99 for the DECA setup (I currently have 3 HD-DVRs). I am knowledgable enough to be dangerous, never heard of DECA before, came here as a start to my research.

I'm replying to this particular post becuase it reflects some of my confusion. I have all 3 DTV HD-DVRs connected to my home network via ethernet. Some time ago (5-6 months?), I noticed that I was able to "see" all 3 DVRs on my PS3, although I was unable to play any of the recordings (I assumed that they were recorded in some proprietary format). The point is, the DVRs are definitely visible on my network, if the PS3 can see all 3, shouldn't they be able to see each other? Should I be able to use this new Whole Home service without adding the DECA setup?
post #8 of 240
You should be able to. You will need to call and have it put on your account. A lot of the CSRs still don't know that they can activate it without a DECA set up.
post #9 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by joed32 View Post

You should be able to. You will need to call and have it put on your account. A lot of the CSRs still don't know that they can activate it without a DECA set up.

Yeah, the CSR I spoke with yesterday seemed perfectly willing and even eager to help, spoke with (I believe) two different supervisors during the call, trying to find out some way to do it, but none of them knew how. I explained to him that my PS3 was able to see the DVRs on the homw network, so he agreed that there should be some way to do it.

In the interim, I revisited this thread last night before your reply and realized that I'd skipped that DBSTalk link in my eagerness to post my question, so I followed that link last night and followed the suggestion of sending an email, we'll see how that goes.

Thanks for the response and advice!
post #10 of 240
I am a new DirecTV customer and had the whole home DVR installed. The installer didn't seem too confident with his install of the service. He put a DECA box on my HR24 and HR22 and not the the H24 I think is the model. As far as I have learned the 24 boxes have DECA built in. He was out of DECA to broadband adapters so he couldn't hook it up for on demand to work.

After he left I unplugged the power from all the boxes and plugged the ethernet in to my network switch, then plugged the power back in. At this point the whole home dvr worked and on demand worked on both dvr boxes.

So basically I uninstalled the DECA thing cause it wouldn't connect to the internet without some box they didn't have. My way works just fine, lol.
post #11 of 240
I would still have them come back out and finish it. I'm waiting until they know how to do the installations before setting one up. Home network still works.
post #12 of 240
ok heres the scoop, all rec must be HD 21-100 or higher h20- will not work, hr20 dvr will work with system and all DVr must be HD dvr 20-100 and up. It all starts at the dish with a swm or swim LNB arm install then one wire to splitter that is for the swm set up, from the splitter it will go to all rec on acc . B4 going into rec it will go into a deca box or doggle. The deca will have a coex and a ether net conect out . both go into each HD rec and HD Dvr on acc. If you have any SD rec on acc you must have a stop filter on them. After all set up you name the dvr and rec on acc " livin room" bedroom" and so on. Then you call DTV and ask to actv the whole home dvr on your acc. This will not show up untill install deca and swm , that is why CSRs have not seen it for install yourself setups. That is why if you do set up you must e-mail DTV, tech to get it actv. If you do set up yourself, you have no tech support from DTV , If DTV set up full support and tech help if anything goes wrong. Yes HR 24 have built in deca. also you need the deca network box to hook up PC 2 TV and Direct on demand. With this you can see all content on your DVR in anyroom with a HD rec. You can also record from any HD rec to your HD dvr. you will be able to use your HD rec just like a DVR in all rooms you have a HD rec. Also you can view content from home computers , video, slide shows, ect on your TV. yes the swm and deca hardware is 99.00 and yes its 49.00 for install, And IF you have H20 rec on your acc DTV will upgrade them for free. You can do alot more with this set up and there are tv apps to download to your computer.
post #13 of 240
Just turned on the whole home DVR service within the past hour. I have 2 HR23's and a non-DVR HD receiver, all networked via ethernet through a simple Netgear 10/100 switch. Called customer service and got a very helpful CSR. We discussed my setup and she agreed to activate it as is, although she was pretty sure they would have to install additional equipment. Multi-Room showed up on my menu after a few minutes and I was able to view all recorded programs on all machines, even the non-DVR receiver. No extra installation or equipment charges, and just a prorated charge for the remainder of the month, after that just $3 a month for the service. As the previous poster mentioned, though, I probably shouldn't count on tech support for this setup. So about $50 for the switch and some Cat5 cable, a CSR willing to work with me, and I'm up and running.
post #14 of 240
I have a DVR (HR23) and HD Reciever (H23).

I have my internet connection coming into my Apple Airport Extreme router which also has the wired ethernet ports connected to the wired network in my home.

I've had the DVR plugged into my network (wired connection in bedroom) and it can get downloads of on demand programming over my internet connection. I never plugged the receiver into the internet because it can't record from the internet and the port was stated as "for future use" in the users manual...I suppose this is the future use? Could I just plug the receiver into my home network (wired connection in living room) and then ask that the service be activated?

When I called they wanted me to have the $99 install and I just said I wanted to wait and found this forum on Google. Seems like it would be great if just having both boxes on my home network would create the same connection they want to install.
post #15 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guild63 View Post

Just turned on the whole home DVR service within the past hour. I have 2 HR23's and a non-DVR HD receiver, all networked via ethernet through a simple Netgear 10/100 switch. Called customer service and got a very helpful CSR. We discussed my setup and she agreed to activate it as is, although she was pretty sure they would have to install additional equipment. Multi-Room showed up on my menu after a few minutes and I was able to view all recorded programs on all machines, even the non-DVR receiver. No extra installation or equipment charges, and just a prorated charge for the remainder of the month, after that just $3 a month for the service. As the previous poster mentioned, though, I probably shouldn't count on tech support for this setup. So about $50 for the switch and some Cat5 cable, a CSR willing to work with me, and I'm up and running.

The Netgear switch is good, I use one too. I did have a $15 switch hooked up before and it worked just as well.
post #16 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by BruiserB View Post

I have a DVR (HR23) and HD Reciever (H23).

I have my internet connection coming into my Apple Airport Extreme router which also has the wired ethernet ports connected to the wired network in my home.

I've had the DVR plugged into my network (wired connection in bedroom) and it can get downloads of on demand programming over my internet connection. I never plugged the receiver into the internet because it can't record from the internet and the port was stated as "for future use" in the users manual...I suppose this is the future use? Could I just plug the receiver into my home network (wired connection in living room) and then ask that the service be activated?

When I called they wanted me to have the $99 install and I just said I wanted to wait and found this forum on Google. Seems like it would be great if just having both boxes on my home network would create the same connection they want to install.

Yes, just plug that non-DVR receiver into your network and you should be good to go, that's what I did and it worked just fine. See my post right before yours. It might take some convincing on your part to get the CSR to activate the service without the additional equipment, but you really don't need it if your machines are connected via ethernet. For my part, I used the argument that if the beta testing phase worked via the ethernet, why wouldn't it work now. Give it a shot.
post #17 of 240
I managed to convince the CSR to turn on my multiroom service last night without the networking. She seemed quite irritated that I was telling her to do something that wasn't in her book. She kept saying they had been trained on this and that it is necessary to have the DECA adapters installed. I just told her to turn on the $3 service and if it didn't work I would call back to get the network set up. She agreed to do that. I then got stuff networked all on my own and it's working great!

One confusing thing to me....my internet comes into my house and is connected to my Apple Airport Extreme Base Station....from there I connected the physical ports on the back of the base station to the wiring in my house...one port to the bedroom, one to the living room and one to the office. I have a switch in the bedroom to handle multiple items (mac mini, DVR, and slingbox). I also have a switch in the office to handle multiple computers. For some reason when I plugged the living room HD receiver into the living room socket, it can't see the DVR. I even removed the switch in the bedroom and plugged the DVR directly into the wall so that both the DVR and the HD receiver were effectively plugged right into my router and they still didn't see each other. Then I put a longer ethernet cable on the living room Receiver and ran it to the switch in the bedroom and reconnected the DVR to that as well and voila they worked. So somehow when the connection only goes through the switch it works fine but the boxes can't see each other through the router....not sure why that is?? I may play with it more. I suppose I could put a switch in the media cabinet with the router and distribute to the rooms via the switch rather than from different ports on the back of the router, but it just doesn't make sense to me why the router prevents the connection.....maybe I need to change something on the router settings???

Anyway the bedroom and living room share a common wall, so it's not too hard to run the cable until I get it figured out. In any case the service charge by DirectTV seems pointless. I guess it's easier to have a "one size fits all" solution for the CSRs to sell, but it seems like a lot of unnecessary connections will be made for people who could otherwise work it out on their own. They should at the very least have some suggestions for people willing to give it a try on their website.
post #18 of 240
The problem with doing it without the DECA is that the CSR are only supposed to do it that way. Doing it through a Home Router without DECA modules is Unsupported by DirecTV and was used initally for Beta testing from a lot of the Direct Users. When the Official MRV platform launched it left a lot of folks who already had it set up and working well with a problem. DirecTV and some of the online DirecTV forums (?fora) set up a procedure for those who wanted to use their own network setup, but was supposed to bypass the CSR step and do it by email.

The first 2 posts of the line outline a step by step method and email is the preferred way to avoid any confusion though going through Phone is possible, obviously it can be troublesome to help what will quickly become a small minority of users.

http://www.dbstalk.com/showthread.php?t=177590
post #19 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by BruiserB View Post

I managed to convince the CSR to turn on my multiroom service last night without the networking. She seemed quite irritated that I was telling her to do something that wasn't in her book. She kept saying they had been trained on this and that it is necessary to have the DECA adapters installed. I just told her to turn on the $3 service and if it didn't work I would call back to get the network set up. She agreed to do that. I then got stuff networked all on my own and it's working great!

One confusing thing to me....my internet comes into my house and is connected to my Apple Airport Extreme Base Station....from there I connected the physical ports on the back of the base station to the wiring in my house...one port to the bedroom, one to the living room and one to the office. I have a switch in the bedroom to handle multiple items (mac mini, DVR, and slingbox). I also have a switch in the office to handle multiple computers. For some reason when I plugged the living room HD receiver into the living room socket, it can't see the DVR. I even removed the switch in the bedroom and plugged the DVR directly into the wall so that both the DVR and the HD receiver were effectively plugged right into my router and they still didn't see each other. Then I put a longer ethernet cable on the living room Receiver and ran it to the switch in the bedroom and reconnected the DVR to that as well and voila they worked. So somehow when the connection only goes through the switch it works fine but the boxes can't see each other through the router....not sure why that is?? I may play with it more. I suppose I could put a switch in the media cabinet with the router and distribute to the rooms via the switch rather than from different ports on the back of the router, but it just doesn't make sense to me why the router prevents the connection.....maybe I need to change something on the router settings???

Anyway the bedroom and living room share a common wall, so it's not too hard to run the cable until I get it figured out. In any case the service charge by DirectTV seems pointless. I guess it's easier to have a "one size fits all" solution for the CSRs to sell, but it seems like a lot of unnecessary connections will be made for people who could otherwise work it out on their own. They should at the very least have some suggestions for people willing to give it a try on their website.

Bruiser, I used a switch that I dedicated just to the DVRs and the receiver, then tied that into my router. The little Netgear 5 port 10/100 switch like I used would probably take up next to no space in your media cabinet. It actually doesn't even need to be connected to the net in order to work, I disconnected the switch from the router and it worked as well as before, but I plan on leaving it connected so I can use the On Demand features. Anyway, good luck.
post #20 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guild63 View Post

Bruiser, I used a switch that I dedicated just to the DVRs and the receiver, then tied that into my router. The little Netgear 5 port 10/100 switch like I used would probably take up next to no space in your media cabinet. It actually doesn't even need to be connected to the net in order to work, I disconnected the switch from the router and it worked as well as before, but I plan on leaving it connected so I can use the On Demand features. Anyway, good luck.

WOW! I did not know that the switch did not even need to be hooked up to the router to work! That is awesome! I was in the beta testing for this and never knew that. Thanks!
Chris
post #21 of 240
ok, so pretend you are talking to a newbie here

I have two dvrs HR20 and HR22 and I just had the tech install the whole home service, which effectively killed my ondemand/Directv2pc service. I had a basic set up of running an ethernet from my netgear router to the back of the HR20. The HR22 was not networked.

Now the end of the ethernet is still sitting in my entertainment center unplugged....what should I do? I tried to use a splitter, but can't seem to get that to work. Would a simple 5 way switch work? Remember I dont necessarily care if the HR22 can access the internet.


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-029-_-Product
NETGEAR FS605 10/100Mbps Desktop Switch 5 x RJ45 do the job?
post #22 of 240
When you ordered the Whole Home DVR service they were supposed to ask you if you use on demand/tv apps/etc. If you tell them yes they would have set you up for a whole home DVR install with internet connectivity. This includes an extra broadband DECA adapter (or a standard DECA adapter with power supply if the broadband unit is not available) that bridges your DECA network to your homes ethernet network.

The problem is many CSRs are not asking customers if they use On Demand, etc. and just set up the Whole Home DVR install without the internet connection option. If that option is not set up most installers will refuse to provide you with an extra DECA adapter because they won't get reimbursed for it.

You need to call DirecTV and tell them that they did not ask you about On Demand and you should have been set up with Whole Home DVR service with internet connectivity. Tell them that they need to send you a broadband DECA adapter, or have a tech come out and install it for you. They may try to charge you $25 for the adapter, but you shouldn't have to pay since it was their neglect that caused the issue.

If you have any further questions let me know and I will try to help.
post #23 of 240
ok, big thanks for that...so I will assume then that the internet line needs to run through DECA to work at all. I was just hoping there was a way around needing the extra DECA adapter.

That is interesting that you say that becasue of two things:

1) the tech had to unplug the ethernet line on the back of the HR20, so he must have known right there that I needed it

2) I did ask him about the internet/ondemand set up, and if it still worked and he said that I did not order that, and that I would need to call back and order it seperate. Point being, I did not know I needed to order it at all!

A little training would go a long way!
post #24 of 240
Although not supported, to save $49 and a service call, try connecting your internet-connected ethernet cable to the unused port on the HR22 (it has 2 ports). It should work and allow connection of both DVRs to the internet.

SMK
post #25 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by RoyGBiv View Post

Although not supported, to save $49 and a service call, try connecting your internet-connected ethernet cable to the unused port on the HR22 (it has 2 ports). It should work and allow connection of both DVRs to the internet.

SMK

This will work, however it is not recommended. The two ports are not like a regular ethernet switch, they take up CPU cycles from the DVR. Doing this will give you access to On-Demand etc. but it will also cause your DVR to slow down, and it may start causing other problems too.

A better way to do it would be to use an external network switch. You could take the network cable that the DirecTV installer unplugged from your DVR and hook it up to one of the ports on the switch. You would then unhook the network cable from your DVR and hook it up between the DECA adapter and your new network switch. Finally you would hook up another network cable between the new switch and your DVR. So the new switch would be hooked up to your router, the DVR, and the DECA adapter. This will help keep the network traffic from slowing down your DVR, but it still may cause some issues if other devices on your ethernet network start trying to access the DECA network.

The best solution is to just call DirecTV and have them come install another DECA adapter like they should have done to begin with.
post #26 of 240
thanks for this tips and hints.

I did, in fact, call directv today, and after explaining that I was not told that this was an issue (internet vs whole home) she put me on hold for about 10 mins. I did ask if she would just send me the DECA adapter, but no dice....I had to get the tech out here.

Long story short....they are coming Saturday morning to finish the job, and for free. It is better that way to get the proper set up all the way around. I will let you all know how that goes.

Just for clearification....with the 'proper' set up, does the directv2PC still work?
post #27 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by CCONKLIN1 View Post

WOW! I did not know that the switch did not even need to be hooked up to the router to work! That is awesome! I was in the beta testing for this and never knew that. Thanks!
Chris

When my switch is plugged into the router I have to reset the router from time to time so I leave it unplugged except when I want to D/L some VOD stuff. MRV seems to be more solid when it's unplugged too. No receivers dropping off the play list.
post #28 of 240
Is it possible to do this by wireless?

All my receivers are not close to a network cable.
post #29 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by trussdude View Post

Is it possible to do this by wireless?

All my receivers are not close to a network cable.

Some people report it working well with wireless and others can't get it to work. If you can try it without spending much money give it a shot. If you have to spend $80 or so you might as well have Directv install it and have a solid setup. If you get a good installer.
post #30 of 240
I am trying to understand how this all works. My home is wired with Coax and I currently use Comcast Cable which I detest. I have one Cat 5 line in an upstairs bedroom for internet connected to an Apple Airport Extreme. My understanding is that if I want the DTV Whole Home DVR set-up, I do not need to connect anything to a Cat 5 line as it works over the Coax. Is this correct?

If I want internet connectivity (what does that accomplish?) or On Demand, then I need to connect one of the DTV boxes to a Cat 5 line? Is this correct or can I connect to the phone line like I used to years ago?
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