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briteView BV-980H / Zinwell ZAT-980H thread - Page 3

post #61 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

I think 8Gb for a 60 minute HD title will need NTFS. That implies that stored titles are single files and playback stops at a title. I'll let you know tomorrow. I have a WD 1Tb USB drive. One of many unanswered questions.

For replacing the internal drive, a 1Tb drive (same make - WD10TPVT) would draw a little less power, be 2db louder, and a little higher. That assumes the on-board software will let you do it. To be determined.

It will be interesting to see the storage requirement for a 1hr recording at 480i, 720p, 1080i and 1080p. I suspect at 1080i you'll need roughly 13Gb, which brings up another interesting question. How does one accurately determine the total HDD space needed/used, when multiple broadcasts are programmed, one being 720p, the next 1080i and the last 480p?

As the 980H uses MPEG2 and MPEG4 codecs, I wonder what bit-rate they use for recording or is it auto-adjusted based on received content definition?

Now where did I put that old abacus?
post #62 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by stapler1234 View Post

It will be interesting to see the storage requirement for a 1hr recording at 480i, 720p, 1080i and 1080p. I suspect at 1080i you'll need roughly 13Gb, which brings up another interesting question. How does one accurately determine the total HDD space needed/used, when multiple broadcasts are programmed, one being 720p, the next 1080i and the last 480p?

As the 980H uses MPEG2 and MPEG4 codecs, I wonder what bit-rate they use for recording or is it auto-adjusted based on received content definition?

Now where did I put that old abacus?

I would suspect that the received bit stream is recorded without change, without re-encoding (at a different bit rate) the decoded picture being sent to the HDMI. That way, the PQ of the recording is exactly the PQ of the original reception. Re-encoding would result in a lower PQ. But that's just conjecture on my part, so I'll wait and see what the early adopters find out.

Also, I can't see how you'd get a 1080p stream into this device for it to record.
post #63 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by stapler1234 View Post

As to reading the external HDD on a PC, they state:
"You will not have to worry about losing the show when you remove the external hard drive from the brite-View HD DVR. You can plug in the hard drive to your computer and watch it."

If that statement is actually true, that feature would be worth it's weight in gold. Especially if the USB port will power a portable 2.5" external USB drive.
post #64 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by stapler1234 View Post

It will be interesting to see the storage requirement for a 1hr recording at 480i, 720p, 1080i and 1080p. I suspect at 1080i you'll need roughly 13Gb, which brings up another interesting question. How does one accurately determine the total HDD space needed/used, when multiple broadcasts are programmed, one being 720p, the next 1080i and the last 480p?

It's not the resolution but the transmission bitrate that determines recording size. From my experience with OTA TiVo HD recordings, I find the file size for a 1 hr broadcast ranges from ~4.5 GB (ABC) to ~8.5 GB (CBS). CBS (in my area) broadcasts a single subchannel at near max bitrate. Everybody else pollutes their bandwidth with multiple sub-channels of little value -- that lowers the transmission bitrate of their primary HD sub-channel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stapler1234 View Post

As the 980H uses MPEG2 and MPEG4 codecs, I wonder what bit-rate they use for recording or is it auto-adjusted based on received content definition?

Good question. As far as the digital tuners go, I suspect it just spools the transport streams as-received, like most DVR's, to provide original quality playback. ATSC is MPEG-2, I don't know about QAM. But the box also has a 480i composite analog input. That will require encoding, so it remains to be seen what choices are offered as to both bitrate and codec (MPEG-2 vs. MPEG-4).
post #65 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by stapler1234 View Post

It will be interesting to see the storage requirement for a 1hr recording at 480i, 720p, 1080i and 1080p. I suspect at 1080i you'll need roughly 13Gb, which brings up another interesting question. How does one accurately determine the total HDD space needed/used, when multiple broadcasts are programmed, one being 720p, the next 1080i and the last 480p?

As the 980H uses MPEG2 and MPEG4 codecs, I wonder what bit-rate they use for recording or is it auto-adjusted based on received content definition?

Now where did I put that old abacus?

I think you and frank70 are both right and closer to reality with storage time. I went: 320Gb = 40hr, 160Gb = 20hr, 80Gb = 10hr, then 8Gb = 1hr. I rounded of course, and my Sony needs 250Gb for 30hrs. Magnavox gets me 100hs on 500Gb at 480i. So the numbers are all over the place and until I get mine and time to test it, we can make good guesses. I wonder how "small" the USB device can be? If 16Gb, I picture a drawer full of small "shows". That's too cute.
post #66 of 293
Fedex delivered BV-980H. No packing issues.

Some confusion on page 6 - storage & output resolutions. Sorry, I read book first. Same as on-line. The bolder print on page 12 is caused by a sticker (page 12) on some of the remote keys.

Real confusion on page 14 for USB update. That should be resolved later when I try to apply its update.

Power block not polarized. Vampire use is 1 watt, power on goes to 8 watts. Only 9 watts when recording. Power Factor is .56 if anyone cares.

You are forced through setup. I like that. Setup gets a B or B-. Cable channels found: 360. Clear QAM I get: 138 including 40 music. Channel editor is not user friendly, but most aren't.

Sorry, power LED is really bright. And I don't need a bright red LED to tell me it is off. LED is covered now. Recording LED isn't too bad. Space used to record should be simple to figure out since they display it with the title. Next time.

Info button shows input resolution minus the "i" or "p". No signal strength indicator. Seems nobody tested 480p.

Playback of a recording is amazing. Not the content but the tricks needed to perform the action. Titles are saved as .ts file type. Is that good?

Off to do the update.
post #67 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
It's not the resolution but the transmission bitrate that determines recording size. From my experience with OTA TiVo HD recordings, I find the file size for a 1 hr broadcast ranges from ~4.5 GB (ABC) to ~8.5 GB (CBS). CBS (in my area) broadcasts a single subchannel at near max bitrate. Everybody else pollutes their bandwidth with multiple sub-channels of little value -- that lowers the transmission bitrate of their primary HD sub-channel.

Good question. As far as the digital tuners go, I suspect it just spools the transport streams as-received, like most DVR's, to provide original quality playback. ATSC is MPEG-2, I don't know about QAM. But the box also has a 480i composite analog input. That will require encoding, so it remains to be seen what choices are offered as to both bitrate and codec (MPEG-2 vs. MPEG-4).
For digital broadcasts, all this thing is doing is saving the broadcast bitstream (think of it as a file coming in over the air). The file size you end up with is determined by the broadcaster. ATSC is limited to 19 mbps. (About 8GB/hour). Rarely do you see Cable (QAM) bitrates over the ATSC limit, if ever. Seems most areas/chanels range from 11-18.
post #68 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by qz3fwd View Post
For digital broadcasts, all this thing is doing is saving the broadcast bitstream (think of it as a file coming in over the air). The file size you end up with is determined by the broadcaster. ATSC is limited to 19 mbps. (About 8GB/hour). Rarely do you see Cable (QAM) bitrates over the ATSC limit, if ever. Seems most areas/chanels range from 11-18.
OK. I don't see that you are saying anything different from what I stated?
post #69 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by qz3fwd View Post
For digital broadcasts, all this thing is doing is saving the broadcast bitstream (think of it as a file coming in over the air). The file size you end up with is determined by the broadcaster. ATSC is limited to 19 mbps. (About 8GB/hour). Rarely do you see Cable (QAM) bitrates over the ATSC limit, if ever. Seems most areas/chanels range from 11-18.
I like using bit rates also. Like (even) the 980H book states, you get 6MHz per channel, same as 1950. On my QAM channels they like to fill 3 subchannels when the .1 is HD in 720p or 1080i, and 10 subchannels when the content is 480i. My music is ED with 50 subchannels. As I lose NTSC/vsb channels, they get replaced with scrambled HD channels. My TV tells me they are there, but scrambled. That's why I rent the HD box.

Judging from the TVGOS listing on my Sony DVR (that I can't use to record - no CC) the OTA HD channels are 2 or three subchannels. That will increase I'm sure. I'm cable only so I can't give comments on 8vsb/OTA or satellite.

Want to know the first bad bug with the 980H? When setting a channel to record, the channel number entry does not accept the "-" key. My 980H came with same firmware update that is on the web site. Now I'm off to see if that can be fixed.
post #70 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

.........Want to know the first bad bug with the 980H? When setting a channel to record, the channel number entry does not accept the "-" key.....

Is the "." required to tune subchannels?
The Magnavox 2160A's tune OTA subchannels by just entering the 3 or 4 digit channel number. (The "." (dot) can be used, but isn't required.)
On the otherhand, my Samsung HDTV remote uses a "-" (dash) button instead of a "." (dot) button, and it must be used when tuning subchannels.
post #71 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Fedex delivered BV-980H. No packing issues.

Some confusion on page 6 - storage & output resolutions. Sorry, I read book first. Same as on-line. The bolder print on page 12 is caused by a sticker (page 12) on some of the remote keys.

Real confusion on page 14 for USB update. That should be resolved later when I try to apply its update.

Power block not polarized. Vampire use is 1 watt, power on goes to 8 watts. Only 9 watts when recording. Power Factor is .56 if anyone cares.

You are forced through setup. I like that. Setup gets a B or B-. Cable channels found: 360. Clear QAM I get: 138 including 40 music. Channel editor is not user friendly, but most aren't.

Sorry, power LED is really bright. And I don't need a bright red LED to tell me it is off. LED is covered now. Recording LED isn't too bad. Space used to record should be simple to figure out since they display it with the title. Next time.

Info button shows input resolution minus the "i" or "p". No signal strength indicator. Seems nobody tested 480p.

Playback of a recording is amazing. Not the content but the tricks needed to perform the action. Titles are saved as .ts file type. Is that good?

Off to do the update.

I agree, it took me a while to figure out how to playback recordings( under File Management ). It's weird, since on page 11 the manual states "Note: The "File Management" function allows you to playback or delete the recorded program on the external hard drive." It seems like it treats the internal hard drive the same way as an external one.
post #72 of 293
Who in their right mind would call it File Management? Yeah, that's not going to confuse someone's wife/parents/friends.

Sounds like the UI isn't exactly up to Apple's standards in the intuitive department.
post #73 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by stapler1234 View Post

Is the "." required to tune subchannels?
The Magnavox 2160A's tune OTA subchannels by just entering the 3 or 4 digit channel number. (The "." (dot) can be used, but isn't required.)
On the otherhand, my Samsung HDTV remote uses a "-" (dash) button instead of a "." (dot) button, and it must be used when tuning subchannels.

The 980H does not support vsb/analog/NTSC channels. On the 515H the subchannel dot isn't needed because it will, in DTV mode, jump to the closest higher QAM/8vsb channel. The 980H only has a "-" button and it can (must) be used to tune a channel. Problem is with setting a channel to record. Then the "-" is ignored. Workaround is to tune to the channel first, the set the recording, since the channel number is filled in already. I already sent them an email. I feel this will be one of many.

Should you have a tuner that works with everything, then entering "26" means you get "26". My TV works that way. To get 26.1 or 26-1 I only need to do a channel up should I enter "26" and wait for the short white noise and subsequent quiet "no signal" display. That doesn't work with the 980H.

As a cable user, most of my subchannels have four decimal points. Those are ignored by the 515H and Panny EZ28 which only care about the significant numbers. That's a blessing.
post #74 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by TNO821 View Post

Who in their right mind would call it File Management? Yeah, that's not going to confuse someone's wife/parents/friends.

Sounds like the UI isn't exactly up to Apple's standards in the intuitive department.

I've just started. It gets better. But should you be in the buying mood, turn off your computer, sip some wine, and watch a DVD.
post #75 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post

If that statement is actually true, that feature would be worth it's weight in gold. Especially if the USB port will power a portable 2.5" external USB drive.

Should the 980H's USB power output be lacking, an inexpensive, self-powered USB hub would solve most USB external drive power requirements. (Amazon has them from $5.59 up.)
LL
post #76 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by stapler1234 View Post

Should the 980H's USB power output be lacking, an inexpensive, self-powered USB hub would solve most USB external drive power requirements. (Amazon has them from $5.59 up.)

I don't know the bit-rate for USB. Kelson? Should you be able to run 1080i/DD5.1 via USB? Don't know. This is not an "idle curiosity" question either.
post #77 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by qz3fwd View Post

Can you take closup pics of the board identifying who provides the hardware (Broadcom, Sigma, Motorola, etc...) and a couple pics of the EPG and recording list?

How in the heck did the warranty seal become broken between the factory and your front door????

Thanks-great job.

The only hardware name I recognized under the hood was Western Digital.
I couldn't tell what brand chip was underneath the heat sink.




Recording scheduling screen. Repeat options are( by date, individual days of the week, Mon.-Fri., Mon.-Sat., Everyday ).
Start & Stop times are hour/minute( 00:00, uses a 24hr clock only ).



You'd think it would allow recording playback off of this screen.



This is the only screen I've been able to get recording playback from( under File Management ).
You can't even tell what's recorded.



PSIP based EPG. Has to load every time used( 10 to 15 seconds ).



Page 2 of my EPG seldom loads, it usually times out & crashes.



Page 3 of my EPG.
post #78 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by tno821 View Post

who in their right mind would call it file management? Yeah, that's not going to confuse someone's wife/parents/friends.

Sounds like the ui isn't exactly up to apple's standards in the intuitive department.

rotflmao!:d

I agree, it should be simple to access internal recordings in a DVR.
post #79 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

Better be ready to wear your kid gloves when mentioning this unit as a possible alternative around the DVD Recorders forum.

Not everyone in the DVD Recorder Forum is a head case: sometimes it just seems that way. I would welcome a really well-designed unit of this type at a competitive price. About 70% of the folks I recommended a Magnavox DVD/HDD recorder to are using it strictly for off-air timeshifting, plus they love the six hour background recording buffer. But realistically, the Magnavox models are not going to be around forever at Wal*Mart: its astonishing they remain available at all in 2011. So something like this Brite-View/Zinwell thing could be a good substitute for the many Mag owners who never make DVDs. The Channel Master didn't really cut it for price and other reasons, lets see if this unit evolves quicker and better.

Of course, all bets are off once the cable subscribers start ripping into it because the Clear QAM feature doesn't work like they expect it to: it never does, they never get it thru their heads the fault lies with the cable company, so recorder after recorder gets tagged as a "lemon" because of Clear QAM issues. I really wish mfrs would just come right out and say "Clear QAM is BS, the FCC is delusional, please don't buy this thing if you have cable" - it might shift attention toward more productive features and topics.
post #80 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by OPPIZ View Post

rotflmao!:d

I agree, it should be simple to access internal recordings in a DVR.

When entering the channel to record, was it already there or did you supply the "-"? Simple test: being tuned to your WWHO, try to set a recording for your WOSU.
post #81 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Not everyone in the DVD Recorder Forum is a head case: sometimes it just seems that way. I would welcome a really well-designed unit of this type at a competitive price. About 70% of the folks I recommended a Magnavox DVD/HDD recorder to are using it strictly for off-air timeshifting, plus they love the six hour background recording buffer. But realistically, the Magnavox models are not going to be around forever at Wal*Mart: its astonishing they remain available at all in 2011. So something like this Brite-View/Zinwell thing could be a good substitute for the many Mag owners who never make DVDs. The Channel Master didn't really cut it for price and other reasons, lets see if this unit evolves quicker and better.

Of course, all bets are off once the cable subscribers start ripping into it because the Clear QAM feature doesn't work like they expect it to: it never does, they never get it thru their heads the fault lies with the cable company, so recorder after recorder gets tagged as a "lemon" because of Clear QAM issues. I really wish mfrs would just come right out and say "Clear QAM is BS, the FCC is delusional, please don't buy this thing if you have cable" - it might shift attention toward more productive features and topics.

It doesn't care about cable. Clear or scrambled is considered a valid channel and turned on and a "favorite". You can manually edit the channels. I think there may be a maximum channel count that you can change to "skip" at one time without saving.

One hour of HD 1080i uses 7616MB. 720p needed 5551MB. Output resolution and recording resolution likes to run home to 480i a lot. It also prefers to stay powered on when a recording is finished. It's only 8 watts, but still a bug. I still need to try sequential and contiguous recordings to see if the 980H can do that.

I wonder who's grave they dug up to get the code for a 10 minute wait before a HDD recording.
post #82 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

When entering the channel to record, was it already there or did you supply the "-"? Simple test: being tuned to your WWHO, try to set a recording for your WOSU.

It was already there.


Select Edit, then Add a new schedule from the screen above to get to the one below. You can scroll thru your recording source options on this screen.


Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeKustra View Post

Output resolution and recording resolution likes to run home to 480i a lot. It also prefers to stay powered on when a recording is finished.It's only 8 watts, but still a bug. I still need to try sequential and contiguous recordings to see if the 980H can do that.

I wonder who's grave they dug up to get the code for a 10 minute wait before a HDD recording.

I noticed this also, mainly when I switch my TV video source. This too. I'm going to try it a few months before I probably grab another CM-7000PAL. It's really too bad Solid Signal dumped the CM-7000PAL in favor of the BV-980H( http://www.solidsignal.com/pview.asp...&sku=&more=yes ).
post #83 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by OPPIZ View Post

It was already there.

Don't lose sleep over it. It's not the first time we consumers have been dumped on. I will reserve judgement until I hear back from BV. They might really want to sell these things and, like others, were rushed to get them out the door and use us as beta testers and will fix things.

Or not.

Still testing, but this might be another insect. I set two recordings sequentially on two different HD channels. Then I tuned to an SD channel and turned the 980H off. It seems my HD channels will be recorded in SD. I will have to try the opposite.
post #84 of 293
Not a good sign when even rudimentary Day 1 tests don't pan out well. Can't imagine they felt it would leave a good impression. And even if they end up hammering out issues, I imagine the average consumer targeted by these guys doesn't want to learn how to perform the update.
post #85 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by TNO821 View Post

Not a good sign when even rudimentary Day 1 tests don't pan out well. Can't imagine they felt it would leave a good impression. And even if they end up hammering out issues, I imagine the average consumer targeted by these guys doesn't want to learn how to perform the update.

I can't give much real feedback yet. I am cable only. I have no guide. My cable feed is strange (84.1401 is NBC HD) and really really dislike dumping on a product.

But I think the only profit here is for J&R selling stuff sent back. I really had high hopes for a basic HD recorder. Right now I'm doing a recording test of an SD channel after switching to an HD channel before power off.

On a positive note: no problems with sequential recordings. You can view the recording process, watching the time and HDD use change. No real diagnostics is sucky too.

But, yeah, not a good first impression. I work for the next two days, so I will have little time until Monday.

Trying to update via USB drive was simple. The 980H said it wasn't needed. I hope that is true since there are no release notes. That link doesn't work either.
post #86 of 293
Boy, looking at those screenshots, I can't believe they managed to create a UI that's even worse than their digital converter boxes from a few years ago. I wouldn't be shocked if the timers also have problems like those on the converter boxes. Hopefully they will actually provide firmware updates for the DVR, but they are going to have to really revamp the UI before I would even consider a single-tuner DVR.
post #87 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by visualsensation View Post

Boy, looking at those screenshots, I can't believe they managed to create a UI that's even worse than their digital converter boxes from a few years ago. I wouldn't be shocked if the timers also have problems like those on the converter boxes. Hopefully they will actually provide firmware updates for the DVR, but they are going to have to really revamp the UI before I would even consider a single-tuner DVR.

I guess you are saying they have made a bad second first impression. That's how I feel.
post #88 of 293
So looks like the BV/Zinwell DVR amounts to a "poor man's version" of the CM-7000, in much the same way that the CM-7000 amounts to a "poor man's version" of an HD TiVo. That makes sense in light of their relative pricing, in round numbers $200, $400, $800 inclusive of lifetime subscription fees right?
post #89 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrpastore View Post

So looks like the BV/Zinwell DVR amounts to a "poor man's version" of the CM-7000, in much the same way that the CM-7000 amounts to a "poor man's version" of an HD TiVo. That makes sense in light of their relative pricing, in round numbers $200, $400, $800 inclusive of lifetime subscription fees right?

$200, $400, $600 (the price dropped on TiVo)
post #90 of 293
Quote:
Originally Posted by CitiBear View Post

Not everyone in the DVD Recorder Forum is a head case: sometimes it just seems that way. I would welcome a really well-designed unit of this type at a competitive price. About 70% of the folks I recommended a Magnavox DVD/HDD recorder to are using it strictly for off-air timeshifting, plus they love the six hour background recording buffer. But realistically, the Magnavox models are not going to be around forever at Wal*Mart: its astonishing they remain available at all in 2011. So something like this Brite-View/Zinwell thing could be a good substitute for the many Mag owners who never make DVDs. The Channel Master didn't really cut it for price and other reasons, lets see if this unit evolves quicker and better.

Of course, all bets are off once the cable subscribers start ripping into it because the Clear QAM feature doesn't work like they expect it to: it never does, they never get it thru their heads the fault lies with the cable company, so recorder after recorder gets tagged as a "lemon" because of Clear QAM issues. I really wish mfrs would just come right out and say "Clear QAM is BS, the FCC is delusional, please don't buy this thing if you have cable" - it might shift attention toward more productive features and topics.

I found all my QAMs with very little trouble...now if only they stay put and not move around. EPG does not work on QAMs.
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